6 “I will strengthen the house of Judah, And I will save the house of Joseph. I will bring them back, Because I have mercy on them. They shall be as though I had not cast them aside; For I am the Lord their God, And I will hear them. 7 Those of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, And their heart shall rejoice as if with wine. Yes, their children shall see it and be glad; Their heart shall rejoice in the Lord.
Verse 6 transitions from God’s future plans for Israel to a personal narrative of what He intends to do for the nation that repents. He will both empower and repatriate His people to national glory. The glory will rest in her Messiah.
“I will strengthen the house of Judah,
God said that He will “strengthen” the southern tribe of Judah.
And I will save the house of Joseph.
Joseph was the father of the two northern tribes (Ephraim and Manasseh). Thus, the entire nation, both north and south, will be represented in the Millennial reign of Christ.
I will bring them back,
God will repatriate both the southern and northern tribes back to the land specially set aside for the nation (Jer 32:37).
Because I have mercy [compassion] on them.
God’s compassion toward Israel moves Him to restore them as a nation.
They shall be as though I had not cast them aside;
God will restore fellowship with the northern and southern tribes.
For I am the Lord their God, And I will hear them.
The LORD never loses sight of His people—that He is their God—and the onus is on Him to respond to the nation.
Those of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man,
Ephraim typically refers to the Northern Kingdom of Israel, but here it may reference the entire nation of Israel. The kingdom to the north was often in cowardice. It was the largest tribe, but they revolted against the Lord. Under the Messiah, they will be a courageous group. The northern tribes will be like a mighty army because of the LORD their God (Zech 10:6).
And their heart shall rejoice as if with wine.
The two tribes will rejoice in their heart (capacity to fellowship with God) because of God’s blessing on them. They will have obtained the fulfillment of God’s covenants to them.
Yes, their children shall see it and be glad;
The children will see what God did for the nation and be “glad.” Successive generations will see the hand of God on the nation Israel.
Their heart shall rejoice in the Lord.
Youth will rejoice in what Jehovah did for the nation. Joy will be the prevailing attitude in the nation when the Messiah establishes His kingdom on earth.
The ultimate purpose for creation to manifest God’s glory in time on earth will be fulfilled during the Millennial reign of Christ.
The Bible is Christ centered. The Second Adam will fulfill what the First Adam failed to do—glorify God on earth. He will personally bring the purpose of creation to fulfillment.