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Lowell Brueckner

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God Creator or Gods Formed


41. An expository study of Isaiah, chapter 44


Have you considered the many things in your life over which you have had no control? The family into which you were born, the time and place of your birth, your name, and your physical features are all things, which were decided for you. You had no choice in the matter. In the earliest stage of your life, you were totally dependent on others for care and sustenance. You were left in their hands to be moved, fed and put to sleep. They did your thinking for you.

As children, we yearned for freedom and independence, for the day that we could leave our parents’ house and be on our own. So we got a job and lived in our own place. Soon we found that we were not as free, as we thought we should be. There were bills to pay and our employer thought that we ought to obey his wishes. Then we married and found that our area of freedom was smaller, because now we had to share our existence with another. Then children came and chipped away even more at our little independent world.

Israel's Only Salvation


40. An expository study of Isaiah, chapter 43

What the Spirit says now

We see in the book of Revelation that Jesus gave different messages to each of the seven churches. He concluded each message with the words, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Rev.2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). Although every Christian should be occupied with a systematic study of the entire scope of revelation, there is a more specific word, which the Spirit of God applies in different places and in different times. We must be attentive to that which the Spirit says to the church now.

I want to keep reminding you to have your Bible open to read along, as we go through the chapters. I assume that you will do that, as I make comments. You will notice that verse 1 begins with the words “but now”. The preacher of Ecclesiastes claims that there is a time for everything (Ecc.3:1-7) and the preacher of the gospel must be sensitive to the Spirit in order to know specifically what He wants the people to hear at any given time. There is a time for rebuke and there is a time for comfort. The prophet Isaiah knows how and when to do both.

“But now”, after the warning of judgment delivered at the end of chapter 42, it is time for God to comfort Israel. There is no comforter like the Holy Spirit. He inspires Isaiah to begin with Israel’s creation. The Lord continues to create; He creates individuals in the wombs of their mothers and He creates whole nations. Comfort begins with the knowledge that we are created beings and therefore we have purpose and care from our Creator.

Spurgeon, Ryle and the Jews


I want to present to you an important study for our times, according to two of the most important figures of the 19th Century, C. H. Spurgeon, a Baptist preacher, and J. C. Ryle, a bishop in the Church of England. I have gotten my material from two sources: One on Spurgeon from Dennis M. Swanson of The Master’s Seminary and the other on J. C. Ryle from the Middletown Bible Church. My purpose is to use the direct quotes from these two men and not to refer to personal comments, which the sources may have added.

The object, which we will pursue, will be to see the viewpoint that each of these men had, concerning the return of the Jews to their Promised Land. This is an extremely important issue in our day, because Israel was reestablished as a sovereign nation in 1948, fulfilling prophecies which are 2,500 to 2,700 years old. Yours and my viewpoint on the subject will determine, whether or not we have concrete evidence to point to the soon return of Christ to reign upon the earth.

Spurgeon and Ryle were contemporaries, both English, and died just before the beginning of what is known as the Zionist Movement… the return of the Jews to Palestine from all points of the globe. Without further ado, let us first allow Charles Spurgeon to relate to us his view on a pre-millennial rapture of the church. He will also show that there will be two resurrections, that of the just, separate from that of the unjust. Later, of necessity, both Spurgeon and Ryle will tell us about the literal interpretation of Bible prophecy:

The Servant Christ


39. An expository study of Isaiah, chapter 42

A Messianic prophecy

“Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights” (v.1). Having shown us that He is able to raise up a servant, who will restore the Jew to his homeland, God is now saying that He can and will do more for His people. Here is One, who will carry out the purposes of God incomparably beyond what Cyrus can do. He comes to this earth, as a Servant, meek and lowly of heart. “Though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Phil.2:6-8). The apostle Paul, of course, speaks of Jesus Christ.

This Servant will bring to pass the eternal will of God, conceived before the foundation of the world and designed to extend into the countless and measureless eons, after time will be no more. He is chosen and upheld in the heart of a delighted God: “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Mt.3:17). It was proclaimed by the Father at His baptism, when the Holy Spirit came upon Him. His ministry began and continues as a work of the trinity and just so, it is prophesied in our first verse. “I (the Father) have put my Spirit (the Holy Spirit) upon him (the Son).” It is our pleasure to consider a chapter, which begins with an unmistakable reference to the Messiah. The Jew today joins us in the conviction that this passage refers to the Messiah, although, of course, he is still awaiting His coming.

In his Gospel, Matthew quotes directly the first four verses of this chapter, showing that the inspired writer is satisfied that Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled them. The message and demeanor of the Christ will not be aggressive (v.2), something which we should take into account, concerning our evangelistic and missionary efforts. We can take personal comfort in the fact that Jesus will not break the bent reed nor put out the lowest flame, but in compassion will straighten and strengthen them both. He was not a revolutionary, mustering the strong to fight, but a Savior, calling the weak and wounded to His side (v.3). 

Only God Foretells the Future


38. An expository study of Isaiah, chapter 41

We have read of Assyria and its king recently in the book of Isaiah. Not only is there prophecy concerning this empire, but we have learned some of its history, particularly that which relates to its invasion of Judah. Isaiah foresaw the Babylonian Empire and he spoke of the satanic influence upon it.

A message to the nations

In this chapter, Isaiah begins to prophesy concerning Cyrus of Persia and we will learn much of him in the following chapters. He becomes a prominent figure, who is even named by Isaiah in 44:28 and 45:1, long before his birth (see also 41:2, 25; 45:13; 46:11). In the books of Ezra and Nehemiah, he has much to do with the return of the Jews to their land and the rebuilding of their temple.