Listen to Me, you coasts and islands…
Isaiah 49:1-2 …. pay heed, you peoples far distant.
The Lord called and named me before I was born. He made me His spokesman. My reward is to be with God.
Isaiah 49:3-6The Lord said: Israel, you are My servants, through whom I shall win glory. My [Isaiah’s] task is to bring back Jacob to the Lord, that Israel would be gathered again to God. Is it too simple a task for you, to restore the 12 tribes of Jacob and bring back the survivors of Israel? They will be a light to the nations, so that My salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.
Isaiah 49:7-8 The Redeemer and Holy One of Israel says: You were once despised and in subjection, but the Lord has chosen you and kings will honour you. In the time of My favour, I will answer you and will help you on the Day of Deliverance. I have formed you and destined you to be a light for the peoples, restoring the Land and living once more in its desolate places.
Isaiah 49:9-11 I say to the captives: go free – to those in darkness: come out. Everywhere there will be pasture, water in plenty. It will not be too hot, for the One who loves them will guide them along highways and level paths.
Isaiah 49:12-13 They are coming – some from far away, the North, West and the lands of the South. Shout for joy, you heavens, earth rejoice, burst into song you mountains. For the Lord has comforted His people and has compassion on them in their distress. Reference: REB, NIV, KJV. Verses abridged.
pay heed you peoples far distant…. Jacob, the 12 tribes of Israel, plus everyone grafted in by reason of faith and righteousness, still scattered around the world. Part of Judah have now returned to part of the Land.
Almost all of the Book of Isaiah, relates to the restoration of the Israelites to the Promised Land. They are destined to be a ‘light to the nations’ and spread the gospel around the world. The Lord will answer their prayers for help on the Day of deliverance, which is the same Day as the terrible Day of the Lord’s vengeance and wrath. Isaiah 30:26, Isaiah 63:4, Zechariah 9:14-17.
There is the issue of the ten lost tribes, but all of that is irrelevant in the light of New Testament teaching, Ephesians 2:11-15 and many other verses; making it plain that ethnicity has no bearing on who is an Israelite of God. Faith and obedience is the only criteria.
Then, His people, Christian Israelites, will settle in New Israel. Genesis 15:18-21. They will live there in safety and prosperity. Ezekiel 34:11-31, Hosea 2:14-23.
‘so that My salvation may reach the ends of the earth’. This will be achieved by the 144,000- 12,000 selected from each tribe, who will go out in pairs to preach the Gospel of the coming Kingdom of Jesus. Verse 3; ‘My servants, through whom I shall win glory.’ Isaiah 66:19, Rev 14:1-7
It will not be too hot and the Lord will guide you along highways….. This is a reference to the fire and extreme heat of the Lord’s Day of wrath, the literal day of fire, earthquakes, storms and tsunamis, that precedes this gathering of His people. Read Isaiah 35:1-10
No mention is made of the Millennium reign of Jesus, therefore this restoration of Israel is before that event. This is in order for His people, the Christian Israelites to fulfil their destiny, to fulfil the promises made to the Patriarchs, and to prepare for the Return of Jesus. It is them who say: Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord..
Bruce McKerras March 2011 t