3

Last year, leading up to the remembrance of the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus, I ran through Isaiah 53, that most wonderful chapter of the Old Testament, with brief meditations on each thought put forward by the prophet Isaiah hundreds of years before Jesus walked the earth.

Each is a quick reminder of what the immensity of God's love and Christ's sacrifice. Have a look, as part of your Good Friday meditations.

The Arm of the Lord

Who has believed our message?
And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed
?

Isaiah 53:1 NASB

Tender Shoot

For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;

Isaiah 53:2a NASB

Nothing to Look At

He has no stately form or majesty 
That we should look upon Him, 
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

Isaiah 53:2 NASB

Strange Will, O God

He was despised and forsaken of men, 
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; 
And like one from whom men hide their face 
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

Isaiah 53:3 NASB

He’s a Carrier!

Surely our sicknesses he hath borne, 
And our pains — he hath carried them,

Isaiah 53:4 YLT

Who Smote this Holy One?

Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, 
Smitten of God, and afflicted.

Isaiah 53:4 NASB

Not a Drop of Blood Wasted

But He was wounded (pierced NASB) for our transgressions, 
He was bruised for our iniquities; 
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, 
And by His stripes we are healed.

Isaiah 53:5 NKJV

Wanderers

All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Isaiah 53:6 NKJV

The Silence of the Lamb

He was oppressed and He was afflicted, 
Yet He did not open His mouth; 
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, 
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, 
So He did not open His mouth.

Isaiah 53:7 NASB

Our Stroke

By oppression and judgment He was taken away; 
And as for His generation, who considered 
That He was cut off out of the land of the living 
For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

Isaiah 53:8 NASB

The Rich and the Wicked

His grave was assigned with wicked men, 
Yet He was with a rich man in His death,

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Prince of Peace

Because He had done no violence,

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Truth

Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Path of Life

But the LORD was pleased 
To crush Him, putting Him to grief; 
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, 
He will see His offspring, 
He will prolong His days, 
And the good pleasure of the LORD 
will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

Crushed and Prospered

But the LORD was pleased 
To crush Him, putting Him to grief; 
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, 
He will see His offspring, 
He will prolong His days, 
And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

Satisfaction

As a result of the anguish of His soul, 
He will see it and be satisfied;

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Fear of the Lord

By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Will You Bow?

Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, 
And He will divide the booty with the strong; 
Because He poured out Himself to death, 
And was numbered with the transgressors; 
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, 
And interceded for the transgressors. 

Isaiah 53:12 NASB

3

Last week, leading up to the remembrance of the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus, you may have felt like I became a spammer, and I apologize if it was too much. What I was doing was running through Isaiah 53, that most wonderful chapter of the Old Testament, with brief meditations on each thought put forward by the prophet Isaiah hundreds of years before Jesus walked the earth.

I decided I should gather them in one place to make it easier to run back through them if you missed any.

So here goes:

The Arm of the Lord

Who has believed our message?
And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed
?

Isaiah 53:1 NASB

Tender Shoot

For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;

Isaiah 53:2a NASB

Nothing to Look At

He has no stately form or majesty 
That we should look upon Him, 
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

Isaiah 53:2 NASB

Strange Will, O God

He was despised and forsaken of men, 
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; 
And like one from whom men hide their face 
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

Isaiah 53:3 NASB

He’s a Carrier!

Surely our sicknesses he hath borne, 
And our pains — he hath carried them,

Isaiah 53:4 YLT

Who Smote this Holy One?

Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, 
Smitten of God, and afflicted.

Isaiah 53:4 NASB

Not a Drop of Blood Wasted

But He was wounded (pierced NASB) for our transgressions, 
He was bruised for our iniquities; 
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, 
And by His stripes we are healed.

Isaiah 53:5 NKJV

Wanderers

All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Isaiah 53:6 NKJV

The Silence of the Lamb

He was oppressed and He was afflicted, 
Yet He did not open His mouth; 
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, 
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, 
So He did not open His mouth.

Isaiah 53:7 NASB

Our Stroke

By oppression and judgment He was taken away; 
And as for His generation, who considered 
That He was cut off out of the land of the living 
For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

Isaiah 53:8 NASB

The Rich and the Wicked

His grave was assigned with wicked men, 
Yet He was with a rich man in His death,

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Prince of Peace

Because He had done no violence,

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Truth

Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The Path of Life

But the LORD was pleased 
To crush Him, putting Him to grief; 
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, 
He will see His offspring, 
He will prolong His days, 
And the good pleasure of the LORD 
will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

Crushed and Prospered

But the LORD was pleased 
To crush Him, putting Him to grief; 
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, 
He will see His offspring, 
He will prolong His days, 
And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

Satisfaction

As a result of the anguish of His soul, 
He will see it and be satisfied;

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Fear of the Lord

By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Will You Bow?

Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, 
And He will divide the booty with the strong; 
Because He poured out Himself to death, 
And was numbered with the transgressors; 
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, 
And interceded for the transgressors. 

Isaiah 53:12 NASB

Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
And He will divide the booty with the strong;
Because He poured out Himself to death,
And was numbered with the transgressors;
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,
And interceded for the transgressors. 

Isaiah 53:12 NASB

…Being found in appearance as a man, [And was numbered with the transgressors] He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, [Because He poured out Himself to death] even death on a cross. [Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, and interceded for the transgressors]

For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, [Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great] and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, [And He will divide the booty with the strong] so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. - Philippians 2:8-11 & Isaiah 53:12  NASB

O what a wonderful Savior

===

Ben NelsonI hope this speed run though this most wonderful of Old Testament prophesies has done you as much good as it has me.

As we ponder the magnitude of what transpired those many years ago on a tree far away, my prayer for you is that the truth of Christ love for you transforms you into His image.

Ben

1

But the LORD was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring,
He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

How can this be?

How can this please God?

The Father says at His Son’s baptism

…and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased." - Matthew 3:17 NASB

Jesus Himself said this.

And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him. - John 8:29 NKJV

But did Jesus come at the behest of the Father simply to walk, to heal, to preach, or was He sent to die?

What not the cross the very thing that pleased the Father, because it was a demonstration of His will, His supreme plan?

for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. - Hebrews 12:2 NASB

The joy was not in the crushing – the joy was in the final outcome.

As a mother in labor, their in no joy in the travail – the joy comes with the cries of life.

And as Isaiah foresees – though a blood sacrifice was made – this Lamb’s days were not numbered.

Jesus could stand with Job and say with confidence,

Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. - Job 13:15 NKJV

1

By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Where does the knowledge, the “how to” come from that would enable Jesus to undo the world wide slave mastery of sin? How did He obtain such wonderful knowledge?

God’s righteous servant found the way to the greatest wealth of knowledge – the source of knowledge.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge;
Fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 1:7 NASB

What does the fear of the Lord really look like? Jesus walked out the fear of the Lord the way it is intended for us. The place you see it most clearly is in Gethsemane.

He did not cower before the Father. He did not salute Him with some sort of religious reverence.

He stood before the Father complete exposed – all His emotion – all His fears – all His desires – and offered them to the Father in the words “not My will, but Thine be done.”

This is the fear of the Lord, and this is the beginning of knowledge.

When you lay your – well yourself – on the altar – you will know – and be known.

3

Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

The two statements “God is Love,” and “I am the truth” show us that truth is just as much a part of the divine nature as is love.

Jesus is truth. He’s not just an honest man. He’s not just an honest opinion. He’s not just a valid way of looking at things.

He is THE Truth. He – Jesus – the Word of God in human form – is the Truth.

Not only was everything that He said true, but all truth has its root – its foundation – in Him.

Just as all love comes from the source of all love – Our Father.

We love, because He first loved us. - 1 John 4:19 NASB

By the same reason everything that is true has at its core Jesus.

By contrast satan is called the father of lies. Any twisting of truth is at its root demonic – satanically inspired.

1

As a result of the anguish of His soul,
He will see it and be satisfied;

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

How was He able to bear such anguish of soul – such deep shame and sorrow?

What could keep Him on the road to Golgotha as He bore each strike, each insult, each false accusation?

Somewhere deep within was a hunger and a thirst that far exceeded anything man could do to Him.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. - Matthew 5:6 NASB

There is no satisfaction like the epitaph “Well done My good and faithful servant,” and the introduction that awaited Him in glory “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

3

The path

But the LORD was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring,
He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the LORD
will prosper in His hand.

Isaiah 53:10 NASB

Here we face a paradox.

It was said of Jesus

… who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. - Hebrews 12:2 NASB

Part of Christ’s motivation – one of the reasons for His willingness and ability to endure the torture we remember today – was the joy set before Him.

What joy?

This verse gives us a few keys:

- the joy of pleasing the Father – of doing His will – of completing the work He came to do

- the joy of seeing His offspring – of bearing fruit – of bringing many sons to glory – of setting the prisoners of sin free

- the joy of spending all eternity at the right hand of the Father

As Jesus walked the path set before Him – this road of horror and shame – He knew most certainly that this path to death was in reality the path of life.

You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Psalms 16:11 NASB

3

 

Because He had done no violence,

Isaiah 53:9 NASB

Today violence sells. There has to be some violence for the box office to survive.

How many Christians will shun a movie with nudity, but embrace a “shoot em’ up” vigilante.

I’m guilty as charged here.

But one of the markers of Jesus life is that, like a good doctor, He “did no harm.”

I understand that Sodom and Gomorrah stand as a judgment against man doing sex in his own way, but did you know that the Flood was a judgment, at least in part, against the violence of man?

Then God said to Noah, "The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth. - Genesis 6:13 NASB

And yet we place our distain for sexual misconduct, but sit and watch professional wrestling. We won’t let our kids watch R rated movies where too much flesh is seen, but we let them play football, where coaches (role models and mentors of our youth) teach them violence until it is ingrained in their spirits.

Sorry, I am ranting.

The Lion of the tribe of Judah laid down His kingly mane and took up the woolen garment of a lamb. [Tweet This]

1

By oppression and judgment He was taken away;
And as for His generation, who considered
That He was cut off out of the land of the living
For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

Isaiah 53:8 NASB

The stroke was ours to bear.

Every stripe was mine – was yours.

The piercing, the bruises, the nails and spear, the crown of thorns – all ours.

Our death He died.

Our sin He took as His own debt and paid it in full.

Hallelujah, what a Savior.