Bringing good news of the redeeming Saviour, v9, the returning Lord, v8, the reigning King, v7.
The battle has been won, the long years of captivity are ended, the holy city and its temple will rise from the ruins, peace and joy and plenty will enjoyed across the land.
This was fulfilled following the decree of Cyrus in 539 BC. But how complete was that fulfilment?
Neh 9:36 tells us that the return of the exiles was not all they hoped it would be: “We are slaves today, slaves in the land you gave our forefathers.”
At the beginning of the New Testament, we meet those who are still waiting ‘for the consolation of Israel,’ Lk 2:25; for ‘the redemption of Jerusalem’, v38.
The redeeming Saviour. Ethiopian eunuch was reading Isa 53:7, ‘He was led like a sheep to the slaughter’. Acts 8:35, ‘Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.’ Isa 53:12, ‘He was numbered with the transgressors’. Lk 22:37, ‘What is written about me is reaching its fulfilment”.
The returning Lord. Mal 3:1 – “See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple,” says the LORD Almighty.” Mk 1:2; Jn 1:14.
The reigning King. Zech 9:9 ‘Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’ ‘This took place to fulfil what was spoken through the prophet,’ Mt 21:4; cf. Mt 1, 28.
Rom 10:12ff too applies this to the gospel of Jesus Christ. ‘”Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” [Joel 2:32]. How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”’
If it was right for those first hearers of Isaiah’s message to awaken, rejoice, and move into action, how much more for us, ‘on whom the fulfilment of the ages has come’, 1 Cor 10:11; us for whom the good news has been set free from all its geographical, religious, and ethnic limitations.
If the bearers of this message messengers of the gospel have been entrusted to proclaim peace, to bring good tidings, to proclaim salvation, to say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” then let us support their mission with our prayers and our purses.
Why? Because they have beautiful feet.