By: Dr. Jacquelyn Simmons
Scripture Reading: Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish. Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the LORD, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel. Behold, I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: thou shalt thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water. I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree, and the myrtle, and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree together: That they may see, and know, and consider, and understand together, that the hand of the LORD hath done this, and the Holy One of Israel hath created it (Isaiah 41:10-15;17-20).
The prophet Isaiah amazingly prophesied more than one hundred forty years that God would free his people, Israel, from Babylonian and later Persian bondage under the reign of King Cyrus the great.
If you will note in our aforementioned text, God said several times, “Fear not, I will help thee.” And he did! He freed three groups of Israelites at different intervals to return to Jerusalem to perform various tasks: 1) Zerubbabel, an ancestor of Jesus Christ, to rebuild the temple, after all, it was prophesied that Jesus Christ would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2)
2) Ezra to guide his people to return to the Covenant; 3) Nehemiah to rebuild the city’s wall.
God’s greatest promise to his created world is the gift of eternal life to us who accept his Son Jesus Christ. Trust Him!