For To Us A Child Is Born

9: 6-7

    DIG: How does Isaiah define Messiah? What expectations would this arouse in you if you heard Isaiah pronounce it? What type of Son or Ruler would you expect to arise? How would this be different than in the past? How would it make you feel?

    REFLECT: How does the New Covenant interpret what this prophecy means (see Matthew 4:12-17; Luke 1:32; John 8:12)? Of the titles given here, which fit Jesus as you know Him? How does He reign in your life?

    The end of war lies in the coming of a Person. Here Isaiah spoke of the Deliverer who will achieve the changes in the nation that the prophet had been speaking. Messiah’s coming would lead the nation into joy and prosperity, which had been missing for years and years. His coming will fulfill the promises of Abraham and David about the messianic Kingdom. Once again we see the child motif (7:14-16, 8:1-4 and 18, 9:6). He will grow up to be the Deliverer (9:7), not a sign of deliverance, but the Deliverer Himself. He will achieve the changes needed for the nation to prosper both materially and spiritually.

    For us a Child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over His kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this (Isaiah 9:6-7). The Messianic Kingdom will be administrated through an absolute monarchy with a definite chain of command and lines of authority. The absolute monarch will be Jesus Christ. The delegated authority will be split into two branches: a Jewish branch of government and a Gentile branch, each in turn having a chain of command (see my commentary on Revelation Fi - The Government of the Messianic Kingdom).

    Jesus the Messiah will rule as King. That Jesus Christ will sit upon the throne of David (Jeremiah 23:5-6, 33:14-17) in Jerusalem (Psalm 24:7-10), and rule Israel and all the Gentile nations of the world (Isaiah 9:6-7; Zechariah 14:9) is clear from both the TaNaKh (Psalm 2:6-8) and the B'rit Chadashah (Luke 1:30-33).

    Justice, holiness, and righteousness will characterize His reign so that the innocent will receive justice and the guilty will be condemned (Psalm 72:1-19). He will rule as a sovereign monarch with a rod of iron (Revelation 12:5, 19:15), and in the power of the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 11:1-5). Consequently, Christ will be both King of Isra'el and King of the world.436

    There will be a Gentile branch of government (20:4-6). Both Gentile believers that were raptured before the Great Tribulation and the Tribulation martyrs who were the souls seen under the golden altar of incense in heaven (6:9-11), will rule with Christ during the Millennium. The martyrs were beheaded either because they refused to worship the beast or his image, or they refused to take his mark on their forehead or on their right hand. Therefore, the Church and the Tribulation martyrs will co-reign with the Messianic King over the Gentile nations (see my commentary on Revelation Fc – The Sheep and the Goats). They will be Christ’s representatives and carry out His decrees to the nations. With Him, they will rule with a rod of iron (2:27, 12:5, 19:15).

    Because the Jews are to be regathered in the Land of Israel and possess it once again, all the Gentile believers will live in the Gentile nations where they will carry out their ministry of ruling with a rod of iron. They will visit Israel, visit Jerusalem and worship in the Messianic Temple, but they will live and minister among the Gentile nations.

    During the Messianic Kingdom, the different Gentile nations will have kings over them. All kings will bow down to Christ and all nations will serve Him (Psalm 72:11). These kings will have their natural bodies, while the believers ruling over them will have their resurrected bodies. While the kings will have dominion over the various nations, they themselves will be under the authority of the Church and the Tribulation martyrs. Accordingly, in the Gentile branch of government, the chain of command will be from Christ to the Church and Tribulation martyrs, to the kings of the Gentile nations, and finally, to the Gentile nations themselves.

    There will be a Jewish branch of government. The absolute monarchy of the Messiah will extend to Israel as well as to the Gentile nations. But directly under Jesus, having authority over all Israel, will be the resurrected David, who will be given the dual titles of king and prince. He will be a king, because he will rule over Israel (Jeremiah 30:9; Ezekiel 34:23-24, 37:24-25; Hosea 3:5), and he will be a prince, because he will be under the authority of the Messiah. The Gentile nations will have kings, and Israel will have a king. The difference is that the Gentile kings will have their natural bodies, while David will have his resurrected body.437

    On two occasions, Jesus promised the twelve apostles that they would rule over the twelve tribes in the Messianic Kingdom (Mathew 19:28; Luke 22:28-30). We have no idea which apostle will rule over which tribe. The answer to that question will have to wait until the Millennial Kingdom comes.

    In addition to king David and the twelve apostles, there will be others simply identified as princes. So the King, the Lord Jesus Christ, will reign righteously, and princes will rule justly (Isaiah 32:1 NASB). These princes will be in positions of authority, and their character will be righteous (Ezekiel 45:8). The resurrected Zerubbabel could very well be among those future princes (Haggai 2:20-23).

    Judges and counselors will also be appointed in the Messianic Kingdom. ADONAI, says: I will restore your judges as in days of old, your counselors as at the beginning. Afterward you will be called the City of Righteousness, the Faithful City (Isaiah 1:26). This position of authority will be particularly connected to the City of Jerusalem. These judges and counselors will be responsible for ruling justly. There will be no travesty of justice in the Millennial Kingdom.

    The final link in the chain of command of the Jewish branch of the Messianic government is that Israel will rule over the Gentiles. This was part of God’s promise to Israel: For ADONAI your God will bless you, as He promised you – you will lend money to many nations without having to borrow, and you will rule over many nations without their ruling over you (Deuteronomy 15:6 CJB). Ruling over the Gentiles will be part of Israel’s reward for obedience. Moses said: If you listen closely to what ADONAI your God says, observing and obeying all his commands which I am giving you today, ADONAI your God will raise you high above all the nations on earth (Deuteronomy 28:1 CJB also see Deuteronomy 28:13).

    In addition to the statements found in the Torah, the Prophets also describe Israel’s future ruling over the Gentile nations. For ADONAI will have compassion on Jacob – He will once again choose Israel and resettle them in their own land, where foreigners will join them, attaching themselves to the house of Jacob. Peoples will take and escort them to their homeland, and the house of Israel will possess them in the land of God as male and female slaves. They will make their captors captive and rule over their oppressors (Isaiah 14:1-2 CJB also see Isaiah 49:22-23 and 61:6-7).

    Therefore, the chain of command in the Jewish branch of the Messianic government will be from the Messiah, to King David, to the twelve apostles, to the princes, to the judges and counselors to the nation of Israel, who will rule over the Gentile nations.


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