Brighton Church of Christ
“Cyrus” (Ezra 1:1)
It is exciting to read about Biblical prophecies and their fulfillment. A prime example of this is seen when we read the seventh word in the first verse of Ezra. Cyrus is mentioned as a man who made the proclamation that allowed the Jews to return to Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity (Ezra 1, 6:3-5).
Were you aware that God had already chosen Cyrus for this work 150 years before he was even born? This is true! Read Isaiah 44:28-45:7 and see Cyrus named by God as the one who will perform this work. I find it fascinating that God named Cyrus as the man who would accomplish this work before Babylon had conquered His people! Notice the same book that promised the people’s captivity by Babylon (Isa. 39:6-7) also promised that they would one day return when Cyrus was in power! Jeremiah’s prophecy is referenced in the book of Ezra. Though it does not speak of Cyrus, it speaks of the seventy years of captivity the people would endure before being allowed to return (Jer. 25:12, 29:10-14).
Thus, we see how God’s word prophesied an event and how it was fulfilled. God’s word is truth (Jn. 17:17). It is not to be treated lightly or with disdain, for God fulfills His promises! Cyrus coming into power is but one example of fulfilled promises by God!
Since God has fulfilled promises in the past, do we not think He will fulfill His promises today? He promised to save all of those who believe and are baptized (Mk. 16:16). He promised to bless all of those who are in Christ (Eph. 1:3; Acts 2:39). He promised never to leave or forsake His children (Heb. 13:5). He has promised that Christ will one day return for His children and bring them to Heaven (I Thess. 4:13-18; I Cor. 15:51-58). He has promised that one day we will see the Lord face-to-face (I Jn. 3:2). He has promised Heaven for the faithful and Hell for the disobedient (Matt. 25:31-46)!
If God can make a promise and fulfill it centuries later, such as in the case of Cyrus, rest assured, God can make a promise to us in the Bible and perform it whenever He pleases! Let us not doubt but trust the true words of God. Let us take comfort in passages such as Ezra 1 and know we serve the same God today (Rom. 15:4)!
Jarrod M. Jacobs