Saturday, June 13, 2009

An Unlikely Tool

Isaiah 45:1-6
(1) 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:
(2) "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,
(3) 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.
(4) 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.
(5) I am the LORD, and there is no other, besides me there is no God; I equip you, though you do not know me,
(6) that people may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the LORD, and there is no other.

Think about this for a minute. Cyrus was not going to be a Jew. In fact, he would be king of the nation that took the Jews into captivity. Yet here is described as God's "anointed." This has a couple of implications.

First, it shows that God is indeed sovereign. This was written before Cyrus came into power and yet it predicted exactly how things would go. Cyrus would be instrumental to the rebuilding of the temple.

Second, it shows that God works in ways that we often do not comprehend. I'm pretty sure it would be tough for a Jew to think of Cyrus as someone that God calls His own. Yet here it is in black and white.

What do we do with this? I think that it makes us take a moment to look with awe at the amazing sovereign power of our God. It also should keep us from putting Him in a box regarding how He operates. I consistently pray for the salvation of many people that seem like hopeless cases. But if God could use Cyrus He can find ways to save these folks. He saved me after all.

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