Isaiah Chapter 45  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Bible: Isaiah 45
Isa 45:1

“Cyrus.” “Cyrus” is a proper name, unlike Ahasuerus, Xerxes, or Artaxerxes, which are all titles. Cyrus reigned over Persia for 30 years, from c. 559 to 530 BC. Isaiah prophesied during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, which would be at the most from 776 BC (the start of the sole reign of Uzziah) to 697 BC (the end of Hezekiah’s reign). It is unlikely that this prophecy of Isaiah was at the very end of his reign, and thus likely that this prophecy was given at least 150 years before Cyrus reigned. Foreknowledge of this type and accuracy can only be accomplished by God, which is why doubters say that this part of Isaiah could not have been written during the lifetime of Isaiah, but had to be written after Cyrus reigned and then adjusted to make it seem like a prophecy. But there is no real evidence that this prophecy was not written by Isaiah. This kind of historically verifiable prophecy is one of the reasons that we can believe that the Bible is the Word of God, not the words of humans.

Isa 45:2

“The bars of iron.” The “bars” of a city gate were the strong wooden beams that were placed behind the doors of the gate so they could not be opened and could withstand pounding from the outside without giving way. Those bars were the origin of the shout “Bar the doors!” when an enemy would approach. The bars would not normally be made of iron, that was a hyperbolic way of saying that even if the city seemed impregnable, that God would be able to conquer it.

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Isa 45:7

“I make peace and create evil.” God does not “create evil.” That would be against His character and contradict the fact that He is love. Love and evil are mutually exclusive. This is the common Semitic idiom of permission, in which God (or anyone else) is said to actively do something that they were only related to in some way. In this case, God gave people free will, and also gave them laws, rules, and norms that made a distinction between good and evil. Thus, when spirit beings or humans did evil of their own free will, by the idiom God was said to have caused it.

[For more on the idiom of permission, see commentary on Romans 9:18.]

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Isa 45:14

“bow down.” The word translated “bow down,” shachah (#07812 שָׁחָה), is the same Hebrew word as “worship.”

[For more on bowing down, see commentary on 1 Chronicles 29:20.]

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Isa 45:21

“There is no other god besides me.” There are many other places where Yahweh acknowledges the existence of other gods, and He consistently reproves people for worshiping them. But here He qualifies the other gods. There are no other gods besides Yahweh who are righteous and are saviors.

Isa 45:22

“all you ends of the earth.” The “ends of the earth” is put by metonymy for all the people who live on earth. God’s message to every person on earth is to look to Him to be saved.

[See figure of speech “metonymy.”]

Isa 45:23

“every tongue will swear.” The meaning of “swear” must be understood from the scope of the whole Word of God. It is well represented in Philippians 2:11 when it is alluded to and stated as “every tongue will confess.” In the context of Isaiah, and in the context of Romans 14:11, where Isaiah 45:23 is quoted, the meaning is not “swear allegiance,” as some English translations have, but “swear” to the authority of God as Creator and Lord, and in the NT swear to the authority of Jesus Christ as the one who has been invested with all authority by God (cp. Matt. 28:18).

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