The Prophet Reveals the Suffering Servant Messiah

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On this day before Thanksgiving, we arrive at a Chapter of Isaiah which needs no introduction…

Who has believed what he has heard from us? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not (Isaiah 53:1-3 ESV).

To Israel was “the Arm of the LORD” revealed.  But “the Arm of the LORD” requires the eye of Faith to see it, and unbelief can always assign the obvious arrangement of Divine Providence to a fortunate accident.  So, it takes Faith to believe the report that is revealed.

In the mind of God, all has been finished before the foundation of the world and done so in the Divine Counsels.

Forasmcuh as you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers.  But with the Precious Blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot.  Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.  Who by Him do believe in God, Who raised Him up from the dead, and gave Him Glory; that your Faith and Hope might be in God (I Peter 1:18-21 KJV).

The words “He had no form or majesty that we should looks at him, and no beauty that we should desire him” refer to His Sufferings and His peasant upbringing and poverty.  He lacked association with the aristocracy and the “connections” which the world holds in high regard.  And ultimately, He was just plain not the type of Messiah that the leaders wanted.

Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed. 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 53:4-6 ESV).

Twelve times within this Passage, the Prophet asserts with emphatic reiteration that all the Servant’s sufferings were vicarious.  If peace between God and man was to be restored, all which Adam lost, then Jesus would have to bring it about by His vicarious substitutionary atonement on the Cross of Calvary.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth. 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, stricken for the transgression of my people? And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth (Isaiah 53:7-9 ESV).

A rich man, Joseph of Arimathea, asked that Jesus be buried in his personal tomb, and so He was, in fulfillment of Prophecy.

Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him; he has put him to grief; when his soul makes an offering for guilt, he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days; the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. 11 Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied; by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities.12 Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong, because he poured out his soul to death and was numbered with the transgressors; yet he bore the sin of many, and makes intercession for the transgressors (Isaiah 53:10-12 ESV).

While all sin was atoned for at the Cross of Calvary, the total effects of such will not be completely dissipated until the coming Resurrection.

For we know that the whole Creation groans and travails in pain together until now.  And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the Firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the Adoption, to wit, the Redemption of our body (Rom 8:22-23 KJV).

“Sing, O barren one, who did not bear; break forth into singing and cry aloud, you who have not been in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord. “Enlarge the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes. For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left, and your offspring will possess the nations and will people the desolate cities (Isaiah 54:1-3 ESV).

The Tribes of Israel, having wailed because of Him, will then sing because of Him.  And the Gentiles, who were once “barren” can now “sing” because of having been included in the great Salvation plan.

In the coming Glad Day, when the remnant of Israel will have prayed the 51st Psalm and finally accepted the Messiah Jesus as Savior, they will “sing” and then be blessed in a manner that is beyond description.  “Your offspring will possess the nations” refers to the Messiah settling the dispute between Israel and the Gentiles, namely concerning the Land of Israel.

“Fear not, for you will not be ashamed; be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced; for you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more. For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called. For the Lord has called you like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit, like a wife of youth when she is cast off, says your God (Isaiah 54:4-6 ESV).

When the Messiah Jesus comes back in the clouds of Heaven in Power and Glory and restores Israel, He will then be recognized as “the God of the whole earth.”

Is He the God of the Jews only?  Is He not also of the Gentiles?  Yes, of the Gentiles also.  Seeing it is One God, which shall justify the Circumcision by Faith, and uncircumcision through Faith.  Do we then make void the Law through Faith?  God forbid; yes, we establish the Law (Rom 3:28-31 KJV).

For a brief moment I deserted you, but with great compassion I will gather you. In overflowing anger for a moment.  I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,” says the Lord, your Redeemer. “This is like the days of Noah to me: as I swore that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth, so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you, and will not rebuke you. 10 For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you (Isaiah 54:7-10 ESV).

Compared to the kindness which the LORD will show Israel, which is “everlasting,” His Wrath is truly only “for a moment.”

For His anger endures but a moment; in His favor is life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5 KJV).

As God assured Noah that He would never again destroy the earth with a flood, so does He promise Israel that He will never again rebuke her with His Wrath.  The LORD will not use wrath again because there will be no need for such to be done, due to Israel’s continued faithfulness.

In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the House of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.  And it shall come to pass in that day, says the LORD of Hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered; and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land (Zech 13:1-2 KJV).

“O afflicted one, storm-tossed and not comforted, behold, I will set your stones in antimony, and lay your foundations with sapphires. 12 I will make your pinnacles of agate, your gates of carbuncles, and all your wall of precious stones. 13 All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children. 14 In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you. 15 If anyone stirs up strife, it is not from me; whoever stirs up strife with you shall fall because of you (Isaiah 54:11-15 ESV).

In that coming Glad Day, the remnant of Israel, having believed in her Messiah, will be totally and completely free from “oppression” and “fear” and “terror.”

Behold, I have created the smith who blows the fire of coals and produces a weapon for its purpose. I have also created the ravager to destroy; no weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed, and you shall refute every tongue that rises against you in judgment. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord and their vindication from me, declares the Lord” (Isaiah 54:16-17 ESV).

The Righteousness of the LORD alone closes the door to every enemy and weapon.

And after these things, I heard a great voice of much people in Heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and Glory, and Honor, and Power, unto the LORD our God.  For true and righteous are His Judgments; for He has Judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornications, and has avenged the blood of His servants at her hand.  And again they said, Alleluia.  And her smoke rose up for ever and ever (Rev 19:1-3 KJV).