What does Isaiah 43:19 really mean?

19 Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.


Setting the Scene for Isaiah 43:19

In Isaiah chapter 43, we find the prophet Isaiah speaking on behalf of God to the Israelites who are in exile in Babylon. The scene is set in a desolate land, with the Israelites feeling hopeless and disconnected from their homeland. The prophet Isaiah is delivering a message of hope and restoration from God to his people.

Surrounded by a group of weary and downtrodden Israelites, Isaiah stands tall, his voice echoing across the barren landscape. The Israelites had been taken captive by the Babylonians due to their disobedience to God, but now Isaiah brings them a message of redemption and a promise of a new beginning. The prophet’s words are filled with reassurance and comfort, reminding the Israelites that God is about to do something new in their midst.

As the Israelites listen intently, their hearts are stirred with a newfound hope and faith in God’s promises. Isaiah’s message of restoration and renewal fills them with a sense of anticipation and excitement for the future that God has in store for them. The scene is one of transformation and renewal, as the Israelites are reminded of God’s faithfulness and his ability to make a way even in the most desolate of circumstances.

What is Isaiah 43:19 about?

Isn’t it amazing to think that even in the seemingly barren and desolate areas of our lives, God promises to create something new and beautiful? This verse from the Bible offers hope and assurance that no matter how challenging or difficult our circumstances may be, God is always at work bringing forth new life and possibilities. Just like how water sustains and brings life to dry land, God’s love and grace can transform our situations and renew our spirits.

When we find ourselves feeling stuck or overwhelmed by the “wilderness” or “wasteland” in our lives, we can take comfort in knowing that God is there, ready to make a way for us. This verse reminds us of God’s power and creativity, offering a message of hope and renewal. It encourages us to trust in God’s plan, even when we cannot see how things will unfold. So let’s hold onto this promise and have faith that God is working behind the scenes to bring forth something beautiful and life-giving in our lives.

Understanding what Isaiah 43:19 really means

1. Introduction and Context
Isaiah 43:19 is a verse filled with hope and promise. It reads, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” To fully grasp the depth of this message, we need to consider the historical context. Isaiah was speaking to the Israelites during a time of exile and despair. They were facing uncertainty and longing for deliverance. This verse assured them that God was actively working to bring about transformation and renewal.

2. Exploration of Key Phrases
The phrase “I am doing a new thing” is particularly powerful. It signifies God’s ongoing work in the world, constantly bringing forth renewal and change. This ties back to other biblical promises of renewal, such as in Revelation 21:5, where God declares, “I am making everything new!” The idea of God doing something new can be both exciting and daunting. It challenges us to let go of the past and embrace the unknown with faith.

3. The Promise of Transformation
“Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” This question invites introspection. Are we aware of God’s work in our lives? Often, we can be so focused on our struggles that we miss the signs of God’s intervention. This echoes Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 13:16, “But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.” It’s a reminder to stay spiritually alert and attuned to God’s presence.

4. God’s Provision in Desolation
“I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” This imagery of transformation in desolate places is profound. The wilderness was a place of danger and scarcity in biblical times. God’s promise to create a way and provide streams symbolizes His ability to bring life and hope where it seems impossible. Similarly, Psalm 107:35 states, “He turned the desert into pools of water and the parched ground into flowing springs.” This underscores God’s power to provide and sustain us in our most challenging times.

5. Relevance to Modern Readers
Today, many of us face our own “wilderness” experiences—periods of difficulty, uncertainty, or transition. Isaiah 43:19 reassures us that God is at work, even in our most barren circumstances. It encourages us to trust in His ability to bring about positive change. This is relevant not only in personal struggles but also in addressing broader societal issues. God’s promise of renewal can inspire us to seek justice, peace, and restoration in our communities.

**6. A woman who lost her job felt like she was wandering in a wilderness of despair. Despite her efforts, new opportunities seemed nonexistent. However, she clung to the promise of Isaiah 43:19, believing that God was doing a new thing. Eventually, she found a job that not only matched her skills but also aligned with her passion for helping others. This experience mirrored the creation of “streams in the wasteland,” illustrating how God’s provision can manifest in unexpected ways.

**7. Isaiah 43:19 is a testament to God’s transformative power and faithfulness. It invites us to perceive His work in our lives and trust in His provision, especially in challenging times. Reflect on your own life—are there areas where you need to trust God’s promise of renewal? How can you remain open to the new things He is doing? God is always at work, making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland, providing comfort and hope as you ponder these questions.

How can we discern God’s new work in our lives?

One way we can discern God’s new work in our lives is by being attentive and looking for the signs of change that He brings. Sometimes, God works in unexpected ways, and His new work may not be immediately recognizable to us. We can be more receptive to the ways in which God is moving in our lives by keeping an open heart and mind.

God’s new work is often accompanied by a sense of transformation and renewal. We may experience a shift in our perspectives, attitudes, or circumstances that indicate God is doing something new within us. This can be a time of growth, challenges, or blessings that signify a new chapter being written in our lives by God’s loving hand. Praying for wisdom and discernment is important as we seek to discern God’s new work in our lives. We can better understand God’s will for us and recognize the ways in which He is at work by seeking His guidance and staying connected to Him through prayer and His word. God’s new work is an opportunity for us to grow in faith, trust, and obedience as we follow His leading into the new things He has prepared for us.


Hey there! Imagine your life as a smartphone that’s ready for an exciting update. Isaiah 43:19 is like the notification that it’s time to let go of outdated apps and install something new. Take that leap of faith, trust the upgrade, and see what amazing features come next. Are you ready to hit the “update” button on your life?