by Pr. Dave Mann
The political machinations of the world are no match for the sovereignty of God. The Lord of heaven and earth will use whatever tools are necessary to bring about his will.
God established his chosen people to share the plan of God with all the nations of the earth. But they did not prove to be faithful servants. So, the Lord sent messenger after messenger to remind his people of their calling. Despite the multitude of prophets and years of preaching, the people of God did not listen.
Eventually, the Lord sent Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, as his agent of judgment. The people of Jerusalem were carried off in captivity for seventy years of exile. But Nebuchadnezzar himself was judged by the Lord, and the Persian/Mede empire conquered Babylon.
Then, the Lord motivated the Persian emperor, Cyrus, to do an amazing thing–to grant freedom to the Lord’s people to return to Jerusalem and even to provide funding for the reconstruction of the temple. Cyrus, though he was no devoted follower of the Lord’s commands, was used by God to bring about his will. God is able to use even those who are not of his calling. Note the startling ways that Ezra and Isaiah refer to Cyrus, a pagan king.
Ezra 1:1 — the Lord moved the heart of Cyrus king of Persia
Isaiah 44:28 — Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd and will accomplish all that I please
Isaiah 45:1 — This is what the Lord says to his anointed, to Cyrus
Isaiah 45:13 — I will raise up Cyrus in my righteousness: I will make all his ways straight.
It is not only the godly and devout people whom God uses to work his ways on earth. He can also utilize anyone and everyone to bring about his purposes.
Do you sometimes feel that those who care nothing about the righteous paths of the Lord surround you? Do you feel as though you live as a captive, alone in the world? Is the world growing darker and darker with scoffers and mockers gaining ascendency? Never fear, God can still bring about what he wills.
Lord God of heaven and earth, you alone are sovereign. You will bring about your will in your way and in your time. I look for your hand to be at work in my life and in the lives of all, believers and unbelievers alike. Hold my heart firm in your grasp so that I remain confident that your purposes will prevail. In Jesus’ name, I pray and live, Amen!