Isaiah delivered a message to the “watchmen” of Israel –“I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest, and give Him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth.” Is 62:6-7 The Septuagint uses an orthopedic term for “establishes” that literally translates as “MAKE STRAIGHT”. Yahweh wants things MADE STRAIGHT so that Jerusalem will become the praise of the earth.
The LORD is never impressed with “straight theology” and “crooked ways”. We should never deceive ourselves into believing that agreeing with Him in how we should be acting is acceptable; NO – He demands conformity to His will in speech and conduct. Consider this verse in Proverbs 16:1 with the same Greek word “make straight” – “Let the heart of a man consider righteousness in order that his FOOTSTEPS SHOULD BE SET STRAIGHT by God.” God demands our walk equal our talk.
Jeremiah says it even stronger: “Thus says the Lord, SET STRAIGHT your ways and your practices and I will settle you in this place. Do not persuade yourselves with lying words because they will not benefit you in saying this is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord. For if in SETTING STRAIGHT, you should SET STRAIGHT YOUR WAYS and YOUR PRACTICES, and in DOING you SHOULD DO JUSTICE between a man and his neighbor, and the foreigner, and the orphan, and the widow you should not tyrannize and innocent blood you should not pour out in this place and after strange gods you should not go after to your own hurt; THEN I WILL SETTLE YOU in your place, in the land which I gave to your father from age to age. But since you rely on false words, you WILL NOT BE BENEFITED.” 7:3-8
The things that Yahweh wants straightened are not limited to our mind. The repentance He demands is both internalized and externalized in “fruits meet for repentance.” He demands that relationships between men BE MADE STRAIGHT. We are no more right with God than we are with our fellow man; no man that is blamable with his fellow man is blameless with His God.
Words are cheap and so is much of our “sound doctrine”- in reality, our doctrine is no better than our deeds. If our theology and profession of faith do not impact every relationship we have, our religion is just as vain as the white wash painted upon a wall ready to collapse. It might make us look better, but we are living in peril even while we make a good impression.
If Jerusalem is to become the praise of the earth, the bride (New Jersualem) will have to make herself ready. The only way for bride to make herself ready is to put on white linen, fine and clean – the fine linen is the RIGHTEOUS ACTS of the saints. John warned us not to be deceived – “he who DOES what is righteous, IS RIGHTEOUS, just as HE is RIGHTEOUS.” STRAIGHT WAYS are RIGTHEOUS WAYS.
Jesus made the CROOKED WAYS STRAIGHT and if we are following Him, all our ways will be MADE STRAIGHT just like His. He was blameless before God and men - His disciples, once fully like Him will be also.