The Stirring of God

“The Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and put it in writing” (Ezra 1:1).

King Cyrus was not a believer! He did not know God, but God knew him. Cyrus would speak about God by name, calling him ‘the LORD’ (Ezra 1:2-3), but knowing the name or knowing some theology; does not make you a believer.

Yet… We must Trust that God has a Plan!

I too, struggle with fear and anger over the direction of the American Culture… and our World. I hear the news and hate the liberal spin. I am concerned about a presidential process that seems to limit the voice of conservative followers of Christ. I am fed up with government and terrorist threats. I also find myself wrestling with fear over the economic future of my family. I want change… but I hate how we are changing!

…But God!

Here is the powerful reality I often forget – God is at work in the “Big Picture!”

Listen to what God says about this man 200 years before he was born: “I call you by your name. I name you, though you do not know Me” (Isa. 45:4). God says, “You don’t know Me, Cyrus, but I know you!”

What we see in the Book of Ezra is the stirring of God, pointing out once more; that nothing is beyond His reach! Here is Our Amazing God, proving that He alone is able to fulfill His great purpose in the Earth… and for His people.

  • What did Cyrus do? “…he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and put it in writing” (Ezra 1:1).
  • Here is what that proclamation said: “The LORD, the God of Heaven… has charged me to build Him a House at Jerusalem… Whoever is among you of all His people, may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem… and rebuild the House of the LORD” (Ezra 1:2-3).

Some Context:

You might remember: the old Babylonian kings took people by force from the lands they had conquered and forced them to worship their Babylonian gods. That was what we see as we read the book of Daniel. Daniel and three godly young men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were deported to Babylon and pressured to worship the Babylonian gods. But they said, “We’d rather go into a fiery furnace than worship your gods. We worship the only true God, the God of the Bible.” And then along comes this new king, Cyrus, who saw that this kind of suppression would never match the power of Jehovah… the God who was bigger than a fiery furnace! It would be better to let these people live in their own lands and worship their own gods. So in his first year, with his heart being stirred by God; he made a proclamation allowing God’s people to return to their own land.

Scriptures says something amazing was going on… “God was stirring the spirit of Cyrus!”

Behind all the events that took place and all the motives that may have been in the king’s heart, God was at work by His Spirit. God works by stirring up hearts, and God can move in the hearts of people who do not even know Him. No heart is beyond the reach of God. Who would have imagined that a great work of God would begin in the heart of an unbelieving king? This is the greatest encouragement for prayer and for witness… ask yourself, “is anything too hard for Your God?”

This is our testimony – “Our God is Bigger!”

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