Ezra 1:1 begins with a reminder that God’s purposes are always fulfilled:
“Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying:” — and following was Cyrus’ decree that he would gather God’s people back to Jerusalem, and rebuild the temple of Yahweh there.
Things had looked bleak for the people of Israel, since Jerusalem had been destroyed by Nebuzaradan, and the people had been carried away into exile into Babylon. It looked to all the world like the history of Israel had ended tragically. But God had promised through Jeremiah that His people would be regathered, and that He still had a purpose for them. Now, 70 years later (II Chronicles 36:21), after many had forgotten anything about Israel, God stirred the heart of Cyrus, who was not a Jew, to rebuild Jerusalem and gather Israel.
This scripture is another reminder for us that God’s purposes will always be fulfilled. Even when we forget about them, or it looks like all is lost, or we lose faith, or when it takes longer than “we think” it should take, God’s will WILL be accomplished — even, as in the case of Cyrus, through the words and deeds of lost people!
God’s purposes are as certain for us as they were for Israel in Cyrus’ day. Even when things do not seem hopeful, God will bring about His purposes for our personal lives, our families, and His kingdom’s work through our churches. Just as He moved the heart of a pagan king in Israel’s behalf, God can move heaven & earth, stir hearts, send proclamations, and give direction in our day as well. If His purpose for you has not come, then it is not time. If the door did not open, then you can have every confidence that HE was the One who caused it to remain shut, and that His door will open in His time. This scripture is a call for us to trust Him. God’s purposes will be fulfilled!