Summary: This is the first verse of Isaiah 53, "Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?” But, what is the "arm" of the Lord, and what "report" is Isaiah speaking of?
Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?
Who hath believed our report?
Believed. Isaiah is incredulous that his people, the Jews, would not believe. As wondrous as the miracles were which Jesus wrought, and as powerful as the doctrine was he taught; very few embraced it, and in general they shut their eyes against all evidence, and refused to hear or understand. So, the Lord speaks to His people in John 10:38 and 14:10 in order to confirm the Scriptures:
But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.
Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.
Now, while Gentile nations have heard and believed the gospel, in general, the Jews, to this day lie in unbelief, having rejected the Wisdom of God, Jesus Christ (1Corinthians 1:24). Most Jews today are still waiting for their Messiah, their deliverer, their King, even though Jesus has already come.
Report, speaks of the Old Testament prophets’ prophecies that a Messiah, a Deliverer, would come. It is the message they preached, and the implication is the same today. Just as we have the Gospel today, so too, they had the Gospel then. Our report as Christians is the Gospel. Our command is to share it with others (Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 1:8). That is what we are called to do as believers. That’s our part. But, we cannot believe the report unless God first does a work in our hearts:
But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: … (6) For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2Corinthians 4:3).
In the beginning, the Spirit of God moved upon the void and darkness giving life in Genesis 1. And it is the same today. His Spirit must also move upon the void and darkness in the heart of we who are born dead in sin:
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).
The Gospel is hid to everyone who sits in darkness, everyone who was ever born, which is why the Lord tells us to teach, to share, and to witness. But, the giving of sight to see Jesus Christ is of God, because “salvation is of the LORD” (Jonah 2:9), lest anyone should boast in their own ability (Ephesians 2:9).
Therefore as Christians, we must do what God calls us to do which is share the report - the Gospel, and humbly plead to God to grant others understanding like we were once given. It is all of God, and it is God who must bring us to see our need of Christ:
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day (John 6:44).
That’s why GOD gets the glory in HIS salvation, because He works in us:
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: (13) Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13).
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).
And to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?
In the Bible, a reference such as this to the arm speaks of power. In this verse, the arm of the LORD is His power to deliver, His power to deliver the Jews from their past circumstances (Egypt, their wanderings, their enemies) and His power to save us from our sinful and condemned condition. The arm of the LORD is:
1. The Messiah, Jesus Christ:
But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God (1 Corinthians 1:24).
2. The Gospel:
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek (Romans 1:16).
The reference here in Isaiah is to Jesus Christ and His Gospel. The arm of the LORD is Jesus Christ, His power in salvation in overcoming the darkness of the human heart. The arm of the LORD is His power to save in overcoming sin and our condemnation by His Gospel.