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The Ruole Of Cyrus The Great In Israel's Developing Understanding Of God

3615 words - 14 pages

THE ROLE OF CYRUS THE GREAT IN ISRAEL'SDEVELOPING UNDERSTANDING OF GODA RESEARCH PAPER SUBMITTED TOIN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FORTHE COURSE OTSB661, ISAIAHLIBERTY BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARYLYNCHBURG, VASATURDAY, DECEMBER 28, 2013ContentI. Abstract 3II. Introduction 3III. Oracle Concerning Cyrus 4IV. The Role of Cyrus in Isaiah 4V. Who Was Cyrus the Great? 5VI. Cyrus' Relationship with Israel 6VII. The Conditions in Israel 7VIII. The Guiding Mindset of Isaiah 8IX. The Monotheistic Beliefs of the Jewish Nation 10X. The Reasons God Favors Cyrus 11XI. Conclusion 13XII. Bibliography 15ii3AbstractGod's divine revelation is seen here through the life and times of Cyrus the Great, king of Persia. The pivotal role of Cyrus in Isaiah illustrates how the actions of Cyrus correlated with Israel's developing understanding of their relationship to God. Isaiah viewed Cyrus, both a military and political victor, as the Lord's instrument in the release and return of captive Israel to Jerusalem and Judah. Here God is seen as the Lord guiding the political actions of the day.IntroductionIsaiah, the prophet of the exile, saw God as the Lord of history guiding the actions of the day. In addition, Isaiah viewed Cyrus the king of Persia, both military and political leader and victor, as the Lord's instrument in the returning of captive Israel to Jerusalem and Judah. Accordingly, this essay will argue the pivotal role of Isaiah, and demonstrating how his actions indeed correlate with Israel's developing understanding of their relationship to God.The relevant material to be addressed regarding Cyrus' role in Israel's relationship to God is plentiful. They include the historical setting for Cyrus' role within Isaiah, God's participation in the events, Israel's reaction to the involvement of such an outsider as Cyrus in their affairs, the rebuilding of the sacred temple, and how God's use of foreign powers expanded Israel's understanding of Yahweh, the God of Israel. Furthermore, clarification of the term "anointed" as applied to Cyrus will receive consideration. Additionally, reaffirmation that God's provision of Cyrus leads to Israel's liberation will be addressed.[1: Elliot, Mark W., (Ed.) Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture: Old Testament XI Isaiah 40-66. Chicago, IL: InterVarsity Press, 20007, 71.]4It will be demonstrated how Cyrus, "God's servant," holds a unique place within the history of Israel. Cyrus appears destined to save Israel as well as fulfill Israel's mission on behalf of the God of Israel. Importantly, Cyrus is also seen as one whose edit and command served as a foundation for the return to Judah and the erection of the temple. It will be argued that Cyrus is God's chosen instrument through which God accomplishes His gracious purposes, since it is through Cyrus that God reveals Himself to both Israel and the whole world. Thus, revelation will been seen through the life and works of Cyrus the Great of Persia, as well as Cyrus' role...

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