Short Bed Narrow Cover

Isaiah 28:16 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. (or “will not act hastily” or “will not be disturbed”)

Isaiah 28:20 For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it: and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.

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Audio of Sermon: 

Sermon Notes: If you have ever had a loved one in the hospital and you had to stay with them you’ve been introduced to discomfort. Hospital food is rough. If you stay overnight with a loved one you have enjoyed those torture devices they call a pull out bed. The pull out bed is made for a small child or a tiny human. The bed is too short to rest on without bumping your head or your feet hanging off. It’s miserable. And the blankets the hospital gives you to cover yourself with are just too short. You stay uncomfortable the entire time. If you happen to fall asleep, don’t worry – someone will come in and wake you up to see if you’re sleeping.

God uses an example like this today in our text.
Circumstances sometimes force you into a short bed and narrow covers.
You can’t help what circumstances force upon you.

God in our text today isn’t talking to people who are – by want of circumstance – forced to lie on a short bed and cover themselves with a narrow sheet. In our text today the Lord is talking to His Old Testament people. Israel had become worldly. They had drifted away from God’s Word.

Her rulers and priests gave lip service to God but in practice had nothing to do with God. God draws a picture that is quite disgusting. When a people get away from God things become ugly. The Lord said:

Isaiah 28:8 (KJV)  For all tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is no place clean.

The Leaders, both religious and secular, became worldly. The Lord charged:

Isaiah 28:7 …. priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment.

The farther a people turn from God and His Word, the dimmer the vision and judgement gets.

Israel departed from the Word of God. By departing from God’s Word, they could not find rest. Any nation and any person who departs from God’s Word will not find rest.

God is our rest. His Word is our strength. Oh, that we would all cling to Him! As Jesus formed His Church He told us

Matthew 5:13-16 (NKJV) You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. 14 You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

God’s believers are the salt of the earth.
Salt is not only a seasoning, it is also a preservative.
Salt shakers on the table are there so that bland food can be seasoned for better taste.
Salt in larger quantities is injected into meats as preservatives to keep mold and bacteria at bay.
You who believe are God’s salt.

You who believe are the Light of the world.
Christ shines through us as we cherish His Word.
God’s people are to be God’s salt and light in America,
just as Israel was meant to be God’s salt in Canaan.

When the salt of God’s people becomes corrupted by the Word of Man and does not stay in the Word of God then it is good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. We must not emulate the darkness, nor befriend the evil. We must shine as God shines through us, reflecting His glory to a lost and dying world.

Worldliness Makes A Short Bed With A Narrow Cover

The group Focus on the Family noted that:

A recent nationwide survey completed by the Barna Research Group determined that only 4 percent of Americans had a “biblical” worldview. … Barna says, “Although most people own a Bible and know some of its content, our research found that most Americans have little idea how to integrate core biblical principles to form a unified and meaningful response to the challenges and opportunities of life.”

God gave us His Word as a cherished Treasure, as a most Dangerous Book that the world despises. The world offers no solace to people, but God’s Word does. The Prophet said:

Isaiah 28:20 For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it: and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.

To depart from God’s Word and God’s Leadership brings us into an uncomfortable state. From the beginning of human history there has been a battle for the mind. The devil and his worldlings teach one set of ideas, the Creator Who loves us another. Jesus prayed for us before His crucifixion, saying:

John 17:14–15 (ESV) I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because THEY ARE NOT OF THE WORLD, JUST AS I AM NOT OF THE WORLD. 15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.

The Devil and his followers are always twisting the truths of God.
God’s children are called to teach His truths to their children,
and their children’s children.

Isaiah 28:9 (KJV)  Whom shall he teach KNOWLEDGE? and whom shall he make to understand DOCTRINE? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

Those children that God gives us – precious children – must be taught the knowledge and doctrines of God. Before Israel went into the Promised Land God told His people:

Deuteronomy 6:1-10 (NKJV) Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the Lord your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, 2 that you may fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. 3 Therefore hear, O Israel, and be careful to observe it, that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the Lord God of your fathers has promised you—‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’ 4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. 6 “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. 10 “So it shall be, when the Lord your God brings you into the land of which He swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give you large and beautiful cities which you did not build,

A loving God gave Israel Canaan, and a loving God gave us our America. Do we teach our families about the Lord Who loves us so? Is our priority God’s Word, or a football game? Is our priority showing our children the truths of Scripture, or teaching them the latest Grand Theft Auto video?

We are in the Christmas Season.
Do our children know
why this is such a special season?

Do we speak in this blessed season of the miracle that Christmas is, that the Eternal Christ, the Son of the Living God, and how He lowered Himself to be born of a Virgin? Do we speak of His Manger, that food trough He borrowed to be His crib. What great love is this that Christ came from the palace of Heaven to this fallen earth. Do we share with our children and grandchildren the immense love of God revealed to Shepherds, to Wise Men, and to Angels on the day of His Virgin Birth – a birth prophesied throughout the Old Testament.

Or is all of our talk of Santa, of The Elf On The Shelf,
of lit trees and presents greedily opened?

There is nothing inherently wrong with imagination and fantasy.

One of my favorite movies is the original Miracle On 34th Street, and right behind that It’s A Wonderful Life with the great Jimmy Stewart. And I certainly do not mean to be the Grinch Who Steals Christmas (which was a delightful Dr. Seuss movie). But the reason many young people today have forsaken God and His Church is because all they were taught growing up was worldly video games. The television was their baby sitter, and they heard nothing of Christ or of our Creator.

The child must be made still to hear of the Lord Who loves them.
Biblical thought is taught – passed on – from parent to child.
God must be preeminent in our families first, then He will be preeminent in our Churches.

The Bible is a miraculous Book written by a miraculous and very real God.
Do we believe what He says, or what man says?

  • Do we believe that the earth was created in six literal 24 hour days? Few people believe this anymore because more time is being spent watching what misinformed scientists have said rather than focusing on the Book. As you read the Creation Account in Genesis it clearly states:

Genesis 1:1-5 (KJV)  In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.   [3]  And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.  [4]  And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.  [5]  And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. AND THE EVENING AND THE MORNING WERE THE FIRST DAY.

Throughout the account God uses language to show us the six steps of creation are literal days. “And the EVENING and the MORNING were the FIRST DAY”. He repeats this formula for every day of creation. The earth was created in six literal days – 24 hour periods of time. “But Pastor, the scientists said on television last night …” I don’t care. I believe God and His Word. Do you?

  • Do we believe that God created all things according to His standard? Man was formed, then the anilals. Eve was formed from Adam’s rib. This was the prototype of marriage. Do you believe this, or what the LGBT crowd has told you? The Bible says:

Genesis 2:21-24 (KJV)  And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;  [22]  And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.  [23]  And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.  [24]  Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

Marriage is of God, not of man. Adam was first formed, then Eve. On the basis of this doctrine is what God used to form a family. They were to “multiply, and fill the earth”, not hop from bed to bed. It is not all right to sleep with someone to whom you are not married.

The world says sexual sin is “complicated”.
God says it is a short bed with a narrow cover.

  • Do we believe that morality begins with God? Have you ever thought about the forbidden fruit of the Garden of Eden? What was it? Were Adam and Eve forbidden to eat of the Tree of Life? No. They could eat of life all they wanted. God wanted them to have eternal life. But what tree was forbidden?

Genesis 2:16-17 (KJV)  And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:  [17]  But of the TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Why THAT tree? Because God determines right from wrong, good from evil. God establishes the standards, not the majority nor the consensus. God does.

The child must be taught the Word of God, and we must learn His Word. It must be the filter on all our thoughts. What did the Apostle say?

Romans 3:4 (NKJV) … let God be true but every man a liar.

His Word is to be cherished. We need to HEAR and DO His Word.

  • Do we understand that disobedience to our loving Creator leads to discomfort?

Isaiah 28:11-12 (KJV) For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. (12) To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: YET THEY WOULD NOT HEAR.

Israel rejected God’s Word and lost her nation. The stammering lips that God spoke of was the Assyrians – the barbarians who would come in and take over their nation. When I think about stammering lips today I think of the nonsense you see on television. The newscasters, the talking heads, they have no solutions to the problems that ail us. The doctors have not a clue. But God knows. God is able.

God spoke to His people, and speaks to us today. Do we want a short bed and narrow covers, or do we want the REST that only God can provide. God offered a rest for the weary, a refreshing. The first use of the word “rest” is is the Hebrew MENOQAW (Word: מנוחה Pronounced men-oo-khaw’) which means “a place to recline”. The second use of the word “rest” is the Hiphil Imperative NUAQ (Word: נוח Pronounced noo’-akh), which means “to be caused to rest”. God said “I offered you a double rest – a place to recline, to lay down your burdens.” But Israel would not hear, so disaster struck.

It is not God’s fault when you reject His offer and drown in your sins. You can choose to curl up on a short bed of worldliness and under the narrow cover humanism, but in time you will be uncomfortable. You draw the cover to your chin and your feet will be left cold. Or else he will shift and portions of his body will drape from the bed. So it is with the wisdom of this world. It may seem satisfactory at first, but in time it is a miserable mess.

Isaiah 28:15 Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves:

We cannot compromise with the darkness. We must remain in the light that is our Christ. The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), and we are not to be employed by sin or satan. We are to love our Lord.

Our Rest Is Jesus And His Word

Isaiah 28:16 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.

The Scripture God spoke through Isaiah is repeated by the Chief Apostle Peter, who said:

1 Peter 2:5-6 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. (6) Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.

This is how we know this text speaks of Christ. Let’s break down what God said:

Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone

God speaks to us with His Covenant Name. He is Lord GOD, ADONAI YAHWEH (אדני Pronounced ad-o-noy’ + יהוה Pronounced yah-weigh). This is the same name God used in:

Genesis 2:4 when it says He created the Heavens and the earth
Genesis 2:16
when God warned Adam not to eat of the forbidden fruit
Genesis 2:18 when God made woman to be a helpmeet for man
Genesis 3:21 when God clothed fallen Adam and Eve with the fur of animals

This great Covenant Name of God is used throughout the Scripture every time God does a great thing for mankind. It is the Adonai Yahweh, the Eternal God, Who lay in Zion for a foundation a stone. God says “There is but one foundation by which you can have a relationship with Me, and that is the foundation that I have laid”. That foundation is Jesus Christ.

Zion is the city of God, and the foundation of that city is Jesus Christ. The foundation of God’s Church is Christ. This is the Rock upon which His Church was formed. The Apostle said:

1 Corinthians 3:11 (NKJV) For no other FOUNDATION can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

The Father lay in Zion the foundation, a Stone that is Christ. He is what His Church stands upon.

The foundation of the Church is not human opinion, but Divine Ordinance. We are built upon the writings of the apostles and prophets, built upon this Book of Books, this Sacred Text, this Holy Work. Christ is the Chief Cornerstone holding foundation to walls. His Spirit binds us together. His Blood brings us into His Family. His sacrifice cleanses us from sin. His resurrection stands as a guarantee of Heaven.

Jesus Christ is the sure Stone we stand upon. It is He Who is …

Revelation 1:17-18 …. the first and the last: (18) I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive forevermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

Jesus Christ is the Foundation Stone of His people.
He is also the Tried Stone.
a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation

  • Jesus Christ is the Tried Stone.

Hebrews 4:15 (NKJV) For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.

Jesus suffered what we suffer, and more. But He stayed the course and kept His eyes on the Father. He was tried. Though Pilate agreed to execute Jesus he did so saying (Matthew 27:24) “I am innocent of the blood of this just person”. As the Scripture says:

1 John 3:5 (NKJV) And you know that He {Jesus} was manifested to take away our sins, and IN HIM THERE IS NO SIN.

Jesus Christ has also been tried by many believers over thousands of years. They have found Him to be the rest for their souls. People who have trusted in Him have found that He is indeed a bed that they can stretch out on, and a cover they can rest comfortably under.

  • Jesus is the Precious Cornerstone. The Scripture declares

Ephesians 2:19-21 (NKJV) Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF BEING THE CHIEF CORNERSTONE, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord,

Those who are truly saved see Jesus as “precious”, (Word: יקר Pronounced yaw-kawr’), costly, highly prized, a pearl of great price. This is what Peter says in:

1 Peter 2:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,

We know that we are saved by faith in Him, and that we keep on being saved by faith in Him. He is Precious. But Jesus is also our Precious Cornerstone.

  • Jesus Is The Sure Foundation.

We have the promise of God that all who believe in Jesus “shall not make haste”. Another version puts it this way, “He who believes in it will not be disturbed”, or “the one who trusts will never be dismayed”.

Those who trust in the provision of God in Christ Jesus have found a sure rest for their souls. Let life throw its worst at you. If you are trusting in Christ then you know that everything will always come out just fine.

Isaiah trusting in Christ was protected, though Israel fell. Daniel trusting in Christ was safe in the lion’s den. David trusting in Christ stood over a dead Goliath. Joseph trusting in Christ rose from slavery to second in command of mighty Egypt. Moses trusting in Christ led God’s people from Egypt through the Red Sea, while the enemies of God drowned. Paul trusting in Christ preached and established Churches throughout the pagan Roman empire.

The believer trusting in Christ will be blessed. He will never be discouraged and never be disturbed.

Those who trust in Christ will ultimately triumph!

May God touch your hearts with His Word.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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