19 “Though you were ruined and made desolate and your land laid waste,
now you will be too small for your people, and those who devoured you will be far away.
20 The children born during your bereavement will yet say in your hearing,
This place is too small for us; give us more space to live in.’
21 Then you will say in your heart, ‘Who bore me these? I was bereaved and barren; I was exiled and rejected.
Who brought these up? I was left all alone, but these—where have they come from?’”
Leaving chapter 46, we move past chapter 47 describing The Fall of Babylon (15 verses), chapter 48 about Stubborn Israel (11 verses) and Israel Freed (11 verses), chapter 49 about Israel once again becoming The Servant of The Lord (7 verses) and the Restoration of Israel (19 verses) from which our verses come today.
Before going to the second part of chapter 49 where our verses come from today mention must be made of what the Lord God says in verse six
“It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept.
I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”
Where it is clear it is not enough to restore Israel, but Israel is to be a light unto the world via the future Messiah, Jesus who said:
I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen [Israel]. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. John 10:16
Then in the verses for today where we read of the land laying unused during the Babylonian captivity, but now will be too small (or narrow) for all the converts that will be made from the Gentiles (verse six). It is there the dividing wall between the Jews and Gentiles will be broken down by all those who follow the Messiah Jesus.
Yet your children Israel will believe and say this place is too small for us when the number of believers grows beyond expectations. This will occur when the believers include great numbers of Gentiles as well as Jews.
Concerning these great numbers, eventually Israel will say in their hearts with great wonder where have they come from? How did this happen when I [Israel] was bereaved and barren; exiled and rejected? These questions point to the miracle of the future work of the Jewish Messiah, Jesus, and the conversion of the Gentiles which we know from the New Testament caused great deal of discord initially on the question of how Gentiles were to become a followers of the Messiah. Many believed a Jewish conversion was first required, but the Apostles Peter and Paul made it clear becoming a Jew was not a requirement.
It’s Friday – have a Great Weekend and remember to Go To Church!