A Light to the Gentiles
“…I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.” (Isaiah 49:6)
These words were presumably directed to the Son by the Father as the triune God prepared to implement the ancient promise that a Savior would come to bring salvation to a world lost in sin. That salvation would not only be the restoration of Israel as God’s elect nation, but also would reach the Gentile nations and spread to the ends of the earth.
The old prophet Simeon referred to this prophecy when he took up the infant Jesus in his arms, and said” “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss[a] your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel.” (Luke 2:29-32).
Similar prophecies occur in other Old Testament passages as well. “I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles” (Isaiah 42:6). “Arise, shine, for your light has come…Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn and the glory of the Lord rises upon you” (Isaiah 60:1, 3). The latter verse apparently prophesies even the coming of the Magi to worship the child Jesus in Bethlehem.
Paul used this truth as he preached to Gentiles in Antioch and elsewhere. “For this is what the Lord has commanded us:“‘I have made youa light for the Gentiles, that youmay bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’” (Acts 13:47; also note Acts 26:23). In fact, Jesus not only enlightens both Jews and Gentiles, but is “the light of the world” (John 8:12).
He’s Only a Prayer Away.