The Mirage and the Pool
Isaiah 35:7
And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay…

The mirage — what is that! In place of an enticing lake, the traveller finds only ground "dry as a bone," as my Arab guide expressed it. So the mirage stands as the emblem of the sham, the pretence. And the pool — what is that? It is the patch of real water found in the desert; an oasis, around which may be found palms, shade, and refreshment. The pool is the real thing; it offers refreshment and contentment. To an Oriental the mirage becoming a pool meant a transformation from illusion to reality. The entire picture is a permanent mirror of human life.

I. Let us look at THE MIRAGE. It appeals to a need of our nature. To the thirsty traveller the mirage offers water and fruit. Our nature is full of needs. We are not self-contained; we must continually receive help from without. Our senses, our minds, and our hearts cry out for their food, and their cry is natural In reply to their cry, both the real food of our nature and the mirage present themselves. The real and the sham are before us, and we have to choose between them. Alas! too many follow the mirage. In vain old travellers warn the younger ones.

II. Let us look at THE POOL. No one would go after the mirage if they knew it was the mirage. Men want reality, and they think they seek it until a humiliation reveals the fact that they have been chasing an illusion all the time. Now, the message of the Gospel is a message of reality. The Gospel offers to transform our illusions into realities, by offering to transform us. Bring God into life, and the traveller sees reality everywhere. The reality touches every part of his nature.

1. His senses. He is neither ascetic nor libertine, but remembers ever that his body is the temple of the Holy Ghost. Because God's temple he will seek, by proper exercise, to preserve its beauty. The senses, being the transitory and lower part of our nature, will never be allowed to occupy the dominant place in life.

2. His mind. He to whom God is the supreme reality will take care that he never allows a partial knowledge of any subject to interpose itself as a thick veil between his soul and God.

3. His heart. When a man finds God he finds Him who is love, and when he rests in that love he experiences no shock of disappointment. And the other loves that are permitted to us, when exercised within the circle of the larger love, are harmonious with it, and so bring us peace and joy without ahoy.

(F. C. Spurr.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes.

WEB: The burning sand will become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water. Grass with reeds and rushes will be in the habitation of jackals, where they lay.

The Mirage a Reality
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