Messianic Prophesy Fulfilled

Isaiah 45v1-4

Thus says the LORD to His anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have grasped, to subdue nations before Him and to loose the belts of kings, to open doors before Him that gates may not be closed: “I will go before you and level the exalted places, I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut through the bars of iron, I will give you the treasures of darkness and the hoards in secret places, that you may know that it is I, the LORD, the God of Israel, who call you by your name. For the sake of my servant Jacob, and Israel my chosen, I call you by your name, I name you, though you do not know Me. (ESV)

This chapter reminds us:

  1. God is at Work
    God calls a pagan Persian king to deliver His people from Babylon and take them back to Jerusalem – almost like a second Exodus. God used him so that all the nations of the world would know that God was at work and that the Gospel would go out through Christ to all nations. We may not see it, but we know that He is building His Church – His Israel.
    In History there will be times when it doesn’t seem like God is at work. When Isaiah uttered his prophecy the people did not like the plan. God’s people of that day couldn’t understand how God would use a pagan King. The people questioned what God was doing and even had the audacity to say that God’s plan wouldn’t work. However, God rebukes them (v9).
    How often do we complain about what God is doing? We also often don’t understand His plan and complain about it. Graciously, God reminds them that He is in control and encourages them to ask about the future but not to tell Him what to do (v11). Not only would Cyrus defeat the Babylonians, but would give God’s people the instructions to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple and city.

  2. The Vastness of God’s Plan
    The Jews needed to trust God much further than that they could see, because God’s plan went further beyond just taking them back to Jerusalem. God’s plan would extend to all nations would come to faith and worship God. In an amazing way this small group of Jews were kept intact, so that an earth shattering event could take place that even changed our calendars from B.C. to A.D. (Gal. 4:4)! The tragedy of the Babylonian exile would eventually lead to the birth, death and resurrection of the Messiah and a restored Jerusalem.
    How often are we like the Jews in Isaiah’s time – we only see the immediate presence and lose sight of God’s eternal plan. We need to learn to trust God’s further than we can see Him. He promises that His people will never be destroyed (v17).
    In His earthly ministry the Lord Jesus again and again spoke of the mystery of God’s kingdom. We don’t always see it, but it is growing – a little mustard seed that became an enormous tree (Mat. 13).

  3. Invitation to Worship the Messiah (v20)
    Idolatry moves God to the side-line of our lives – it puts something else in His place and gives it the glory that should be His only. We don’t have wooden idols – it is much more subtle: celebrity cults, modern science, drugs, sport and sadly still the Babylonian gods of astrology (what the stars foretell) in papers and magazines. In verse 22 God extends the call of salvation to all nations – the verse that led to the conversion of C.H. Spurgeon, a restless and uncertain teenager who in the providence of God was saved. This God still calls today (v 23) to all peoples and nations to be saved and bow the knee to Christ the Lord (see Phil. 2:9). He is the Lord of Isaiah 45 and His call is universal: “Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth, for I am God, and there is none other.” He calls them to bow the knee, leave their idols and worship God alone. This one and only God promises to be the personal Saviour of all who believe and trust in Him.