Tag Archives: Isaiah 53

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 170/260: Isaiah

Read Isaiah 52:13-53:12

Do You Despise God’s Suffering Servant?

In one of the most well-known passages of Old Testament prophecy, Isaiah describes in gritty detail the Suffering Servant and how His people rejected Him. In some of the saddest words concerning our Savior, the prophet wrote, “He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.” There are many ways in which man may despise the Messiah still today.

There are some who despise Jesus because they know by accepting Him, they themselves will be despised. That was the reason some in the first century rejected Him. “Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God” (John 12:42-43).

Another way to despise the Lord is by refusing to suffer with Him. Jesus said, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Matthew 5:10-12). If the ones who are persecuted are blessed and a great reward awaits them, what does that say about those who compromise the truth to avoid such persecution?

There are others who show their hatred for the Lord through their refusal to help His people. Jesus tells of the great judgment scene in Matthew 25:31-46, in which everyone is separated on the right and left. Those on the right were commended for everything they did for the Lord, while those on the left were condemned for neglecting His needs. Both groups questioned Him, “When did we do (or not do) these things?” His answer was simple: whatever you do or don’t do for “the least of these my brethren,” you do or don’t do for Jesus.

Finally, one may despise Jesus by refusing to accept what He says. When all is said and done, man will have no excuse for disobedience. “He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day” (John 12:48).

Do you despise the Suffering Servant?

God’s Suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-53:12)

Isaiah A Study of Selected Texts

God’s Suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-53:12)

  • 52:13-15 – Exaltation of the Servant
    • “Exalted and extolled and be very high”
    • Exaltation followed severe maltreatment (Luke 23:14; John 1:1,14; Philippians 2:7)
  • 53:1-3 – The Servant despised and rejected
    • “Who has believed our report” (John 12:37-38; Romans 10:14-17)
    • He wasn’t what they expected (Mark 6:2-4; John 1:46)
    • He can still be despised today (John 12:42-43, 49-50; Romans 8:17; Matthew 25:31-46)
  • 53:4-6 – Vicarious suffering
    • Because of our sins (Isaiah 59:2)
    • Wounded or pierced (Psalm 22:16; John 19:34; Zechariah 12:10; John 19:37)
    • The folly of following human wisdom (Proverbs 3:5; Jeremiah 10:23; Judges 17:6; 21:25; Proverbs 14:12)
  • 53:7-9 – Silence of the Servant
    • Before Pilate (Matthew 27:11-14)
    • Joseph of Arimathea (Matthew 27:57-60)
    • Jesus as an example of suffering (1 Peter 2:18-25)
  • 53:10-12 – Victory and Reward
    • “The fruit of his suffering is the redemption of men effected by the offering for sin which Christ made when he went to the cross.” (Guy N. Woods)
    • “He shall prolong His days” – resurrection from the dead (Revelation 1:18)

Discussion Questions

1. Why is this passage so often read as we prepare to observe the Lord’s Supper?

2. Why was the Messiah “despised and rejected by men” in the first century? What are some reasons men today still reject Him and His message?

3. What phrases indicate the vicarious nature of Christ’s suffering?

4. In what way was the Lord’s days prolonged?

5. Identify some of the specific prophecies in this chapter and their fulfillments in the New Testament.