281: Isaiah 61:1c


The Prophecies of the Messiah: Prophecy 281

The Messiah will set free—all those who have been held in Abraham’s Bosom, awaiting the sacrifice of the Messiah for their sins.

Old Testament Prediction:

Isaiah 61:1c “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound…

New Testament Fulfillment:

1 Peter 3:18-20 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water.

Ephesians 4:8-10 Therefore He says: “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.” (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)


There is likely a dual meaning to this 281st prophecy from Isaiah 61:1c.

First, Jesus came to set free all of us who were held captive by our sins. Therefore, a universal application of salvation and deliverance by Isaiah’s prophecy of the coming Messiah.

Second, it is certain that the captives of Isaiah’s prophecy in chapter 61:1 is also a specific reference to all those who died during the Old Testament, believing in the coming Messiah, who were carried to Abraham’s Bosom to await His sacrifice for their sins.

We learn of these captives from Jesus in Luke chapter 16:

Luke 16:19-31 “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’ Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’ Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’ 

It is clear that Peter was also writing concerning this same group who had died previously and were waiting for the completion of the Messiah’s sacrifice for their sins. The place where the righteous dead were kept, prior to the coming of the Messiah, is described by Jesus as “Abraham’s Bosom.” This place of comfort was separated from the place of the unsaved, by a great gulf or wide expanse that separated the two places.

Two Chambers of Luke 16 reduced

“…between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us…”

The unsaved were held in Hades. They remain there to the present day. It is here in Torments, or Hades that Jesus describes all those who have died without believing in the coming Messiah. They will remain in Hades until their final judgment at the Great White Throne, described in Revelation 20.

Revelation 20:11-13 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works.

The important difference between those who are called unsaved in Hades and the saved in Abraham’s Bosom is found in the above verses, from Revelation 20:11-13:

Those in Hades are there because they made a decision during their life on earth—to refuse the coming Messiah and His sacrifice to take away their sins. Instead, having rejected the only means by which God has provided for the forgiveness of our sins, they have condemned themselves.

Some people believe that if their good works outweigh the bad, and they are a basically a good person—that God will accept them into heaven. This is a false and untrue belief, which is not supported by the word of God.

The Bible teaches that there is no one good, no not one and All have sinned and fall short to of the Glory of God.

Romans 3:10,12 As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;…They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”

Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

All people, for all time, require a Savior. Either we choose to pay for our sins ourselves, or we appoint Jesus to pay for our sins. Either way, all sins will be judged and punished.

The wonderful news today that every person should be made aware of is that Jesus has paid for all of our sins and there awaits no judgement for anyone who places themselves under the covering of Jesus sacrifice for all sins.

Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus…

The promise of this 281st prophecy from Isaiah is that the Messiah will set at liberty those who are held captive by their sins, as well as those who were taken to Abraham’s Bosom. When Jesus rose from the dead, He carried all of these captives from the Old Testament back to heaven where they remain to the present day. Abraham’s Bosom has remained closed since Jesus resurrection and today anyone who believes in Jesus as their Savior, when they die, they are taken immediately to heaven to be with the Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:8 ...to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.

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