THE RESTORATION OF ISRAEL THROUGH GOD'S SERVANT, JESUS CHRIST
This chapter has several important concepts about restoring Israel in the future:
1. God has prepared a special Savior/Servant to deliver His people 49:1-7
V 1 Listen and pay attention sets the tone for this prophecy.
God's revelation of Himself and His purposes was meant to be heard, understood, and acted on!
"O islands. . .peoples from afar"
These parallel phrases show the universal implications of the "servant's" task including us--Gentiles.
"The Lord called Me from the womb; From the body of My mother He named Me."
Here is clear prophecy that Christ would be a man born of woman.
V 2 We are told that the word goes forth out of his mouth is like a sharp, two-edged sword—This is Revelation.
"In the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me."
Here messiah is a very special arrow used in the hand of skilled warrior. The Servant's task is specialized and specific. This thought is captured by the recurrent NT phrase "in the fullness of time". God acts on His timetable.
V 3 He said to Me, “You are My Servant, Israel, In Whom I will be glorified".
Here Israel and Messiah are both servants. While Israel failed their service to God, Jesus would finish and complete that service.
V 4 But I said, “I have toiled in vain, I have spent My strength for nothing and vanity."
So in Jn 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. He was despised, rejected and crucified. He said 'I have labored in vain.'
Here we see how Jesus feels at end of his ministry. I have failed and been forsaken by the disciples, rejected, and alone. My own people rejected me. My ministry is wasted. But my trust is in the lord. John the Baptist and the apostle Paul both felt this way.
So too we may feel have failure. Our life work seems wasted. But we too can trust in the lord. We cannot give anything to God in the sense of contributing to Him or His work. He does not need us. Ministry is God’s gift to us. It was created by God to give us a way to occupy our time in such a way that we can do something eternally significant.
"Yet surely the justice due to Me is with the Lord, And My reward with My God.”
Our hope is in the lord and our reward for service comes from him. That is where our focus is to be.
V 5 Here is what God the Father says in return:
"And now says the Lord, who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant,"
Here Jesus acknowledges his incarnation again. And it was for two purposes:
1. To bring Jacob back to Him, so that Israel might be gathered to Him (For I am honored in the sight of the Lord, And My God is My strength)".
2. I am going to throw in some Gentiles too. You have been running around in Israel for three years hard labor but here is the big prize.
V 6 He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also make You a light of the nations So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”
Do you think I do not appreciate what you have done? I am going to throw in a gentile bride. How is that? This means God can do exceedingly abundantly above what we can think or pray! Who can know what God is accomplishing through our service?
V 7 “Thus says the Lord (the Father) the Redeemer of Israel and its Holy One,
To the despised One (Jesus his Son), To the One abhorred by the nation (to this present day) To the Servant of rulers (he came to serve not be served)" “Kings will see and arise, Princes will also bow down"
Wait until the 2nd advent and all of the kings of this world will bow down to you! God is going to turn that all around. His first advent was humiliation. His second advent will; be exaltation. How is that!
"Because of the Lord who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel who has chosen You.”
Again the lord will faithfully fulfill his covet through Jesus for Israel.
V 8 Thus says the Lord "In a favorable time I have answered You, And in a day of salvation I have helped You; And I will keep You and give You for a covenant of the people."
This refers to the Messiah and to the nation. Jesus has been given as an inheritance. It is the people, their land, and His rule.
"To restore the land, to make them inherit the desolate heritages;"
2. This special Servant will bring all of His people back to Israel 49:9-21
V 9 Saying to those who are bound, ‘Go forth, to those who are in darkness, ‘Show yourselves.’
Will Jesus accomplish that? Yes he will. The nation of Israel will be delivered from bondage and oppression as they believe in Jesus and come to Him.
"Along the roads they will feed,
And their pasture will be on all bare heights.
V 10 “They will not hunger or thirst,
Nor will the scorching heat or sun strike them down;
For He who has compassion on them will lead them
And will guide them to springs of water.
V 11 “I will make all My mountains a road,
And My highways will be raised up.”
V 12 “Behold, these will come from afar;
And lo, these will come from the north and from the west,
And these from the land of Sinim.”
This is all the re-gathering of Israel when the messiah comes back. All the believing Jews of the world are coming back. God is clearing the highways for their return making it easy for them.
And what happens when all of these believers gather in the land?
There is praise and worship based on a restored relationship with god!
V 13 "Shout for joy, O heavens! And rejoice, O earth! Break forth into joyful shouting, O mountains! For the Lord has comforted His peopleAnd will have compassion on His afflicted."
This is Israel! There is no peace for the world until Israel is in a right relationship with God. Peace comes from out of Zion. Truth comes from Jerusalem. So we watch Jerusalem today because we know how this story is going to end. It is easy to be on Gods side when you know who is going to win the battle.
Now back to reality. After all of this glorious truth we come back now to Israel in Isaiah’s day who is saying:
V 14 But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me, and the Lord has forgotten me.”
Oh woe is me. Pity party. God has forgotten me. God does not love me anymore.
God says to that:
V 15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child And have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you."
God has a mothers love for them. Do you feel forsaken? He has not forgotten us, Hebrews 13:5-6!!!
5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you."
6 So we can confidently say, "The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?"
V 16 “Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands;"
God has them where he can keep his eye on them.
"Your walls are continually before Me." That is the city of Jerusalem.
V 17 “Your builders hurry; Your destroyers and devastators Will depart from you."
I am going to bring your children back snatching them from hand of enemy.
V 18 “Lift up your eyes and look around; All of them gather together, they come to you.
As I live,” declares the Lord, “You will surely put on all of them as jewels and bind them on as a bride."
PT: All Israel is coming back and having their identity restored and the Tribes are back in the land and the Messiah ruling there. The promises to Israel are all coming true. Just as the promises already fulfilled in the past, so too are the ones yet in the future.
V 19 “For your waste and desolate places and your destroyed land—Surely now you will be too cramped for the inhabitants, and those who swallowed you will be far away."
Their enemies will be far far away with not enough room for the Israelites in the land.
Even though they had been reduced to a small number, even while in Babylonian captivity. Even though scattered throughout the world for generations.
V 20 “The children of whom you were bereaved will yet say in your ears,
‘The place is too cramped for me."
V 21 “Then you will say in your heart, ‘who has begotten these for me, since I have been bereaved of my children and am barren, an exile and a wanderer? And who has reared these? Behold, I was left alone; from where did these come?’” Make room for me that I may live here.’
If you know anything about history of Israel you know they have lived in exile in small little communities often persecuted. A hard life for 2000 yrs. but now they are all coming back. Miracle of miracles, though millions have died they will return out of nowhere in vast numbers overrunning the country.
3. The entire world will submit to Israel and honor Israel's God 49:22-26
V 22 Thus says the Lord God, "Behold, I will lift up My hand to the nations
And set up My standard to the peoples; And they will bring your sons in their bosom,
And your daughters will be carried on their shoulders."
Lots of Jews have returned to the land the last 100 years from nations all around the world and today Israel is this large melting pot of Jewish people from my nations.
Jews from China, Africa, and South America all learning Hebrew with different skin colors and that's a miracle since 1948 and even before. God is using the nations to harbor and grow these Jews from all nationalities!
But that is not this return in Isaiah. This is the re-gathering when Messiah comes back. This time it is all believers. Now it is mostly unbelievers.
V 23 “Kings will be your guardians, And their princesses your nurses. They will bow down to you with their faces to the earth And lick the dust of your feet; And you will know that I am the Lord; Those who hopefully wait for Me will not be put to shame."
PT: The kings of the earth will consider it a privilege to serve the Jews. This is exactly the reverse of what it has been for 2000 years.
V 24 “Can the prey be taken from the mighty man, Or the captives of a tyrant be rescued?”
V 25 Surely, thus says the Lord, “Even the captives of the mighty man will be taken away, and the prey of the tyrant will be rescued."
PT: It does not matter to god how ferocious their enemy may be God is able to fully deliver his people and he will. So much so that they will no longer surrounded by her enemies. This has been the case throughout Israel’s history.
"For I will contend with the one who contends with you, And I will save your sons."
V 26 “I will feed your oppressors with their own flesh, And they will become drunk with their own blood as with sweet wine; And all flesh will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior And your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.”
Yes. God will do this for Israel. This will happen when Jesus returns to the earth to reign over it from Israel and Jerusalem.
1. Understand that there is a future for the land of Israel. There will not be peace in the world until Israel is finally at peace with god.
2. Until then we are to take the gospel to both the Jew and gentile. Today God is building his church not re-gathering Israel. Our mandate is the gospel and discipleship.
3. We cannot imagine what God can do in and through and with circumstances that seem so hopeless. If God is anything, he is able to do more than we could ask think or imagine and that includes your life situation today.