Isaiah 45

God Chooses Cyrus to Fulfill His Purpose

Who did God select to fulfill His purpose?
Isaiah 44:24-28 praise God as Creator (44:24) of all things and as the Lord of history (44:25-28). As the Lord of history, God frustrated the omens of diviners and the knowledge of wise men (44:25). This is a reference to the efforts of nations to get a word from their gods when they felt threatened by Cyrus.

As the Lord of history, God spoke regarding the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the cities of Judah (44:26). As the Lord of history, God announced that He would use a pagan (see 45:4, “Though you have not known Me”) ruler named Cyrus to accomplish His purpose (44:28). Psalm 119:91b states, “For all things are Thy servants.”

As the Creator of all things and the Lord of history, God can use anything or anyone He desires to accomplish His purpose in the world. God would grant Cyrus military successes in order to put him in a position to help His people (45:1-3, 5). God would do these things for the sake of His people (45:4) and that men and nations might acknowledge Him (45:6-7).

God had made His choice. God would use Cyrus (rather than someone from the line of David) despite any objections from His people (who were like vessels of clay arguing with the potter) about working to accomplish His purpose through a pagan ruler (45:9-13). Note: Read Ezra 1:1-4.

Practical Consideration: All things are God’s servants.
Psalm 119:91b declares that all things are God’s servants. God’s people had a difficult time accepting that God would use a foreign nation to punish them and a foreign ruler to deliver them. We should remember that everything in the universe is at God’s disposal to use as He desires to fulfill His purposes. We are in no position to argue with God regarding the instruments He chooses to use to accomplish His divine purposes.

All Nations Called to Salvation

What call did God issue to the nations?
God called the nations to forsake their worship of idols and turn to Him for salvation. The message of verse 14 is addressed to Jerusalem. Other nations would recognize the work of Cyrus as divinely ordained by Israel’s God and consequently acknowledge Him as the One true God.

Verses 15-17 tell of the judgment awaiting those who reject God. In verses 18-19 God declares that He has openly spoken the truth for all to hear. In verses 20-21, the idols of the nations are again challenged to prove themselves. Verses 22-23 are an invitation to all men to turn to the Lord for salvation (see also 45:6). Verses 24-25 affirm that those who turn to the Lord will be justified while those who reject Him will be ashamed.

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