9/17 Isaiah 49:6

6 he says: "It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to bring back the preserved of Israel; I will make you as a light for the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth."

In this chapter, God calls His servant, Israel. When you try to share the suffering servant songs of Isaiah with Jews, they will tell you that their rabbi teach that the servant is Israel. Our verse for today tells us that the Servant raises up the tribes of Jacob (Israel's old name) and brings back the preserved of Israel. They don't bring themselves back or raise themselves up, so who is this new Israel. Israel means "one who prevails with God." Revelation 5:5 tells us that the Lion of the tribe of Judah has conquered. Jesus has prevailed over sin and death. He has prevailed so that mercy might triumph over judgment (James 2:13).

Jesus not only raises up the Jews, such as the apostles, and brings back the preserved of Israel after they were scattered over the earth, but He has become a light to the world. Every nation on earth has heard the Gospel. God's salvation (which is what Jesus' name means) has reached the end of the earth! Even this very devotional thought is going out to the end of the world as part of the fulfillment of this verse. While you are reading this in America, someone is reading it in South America, Asia, Africa, the islands of the sea, and everywhere the internet is available. God's salvation, Jesus, is touching lives in every remote corner of the planet.

He is our light (John 1:9). We were in darkness, but the One who is the light of the world is illumining our hearts with His truth. He is making us His lights to share with those in darkness the victory He has won for them. His children are obeying His command and going to the uttermost parts of the earth with the good news of what Jesus has done for us (Acts 1:8). That is a demonstration that God does indeed love the world; and at the same time, He loves you personally.

Consider: You are living in an age when more people are living than at any other time in history. The gospel is reaching out to those billions of people wherever they live. What a privilege to have His Word, a lamp to our feet and a light to our path!