God’s Suffering Servant Part 3 :: By Dr. Donald Whitchard

God’s Suffering Servant Part 3: Amazing Servant of Jehovah 

In our last edition, I presented an expository outline of Isaiah 52: 13-15 concerning the Messiah as the sin-bearing Servant. The outline covered the glory that will be with the Servant (52:13) and covered the aspects of His prudence, exaltation, and the fact that his glory will come at a time He designates. 52:14 described His appearance before the people and how He was marred and wounded to the point where He was unrecognizable and His battered looks would repel people. Sorrow would turn to joy as the work of the Servant in the future will be one of absolute rule over the earth. The rulers of the earth will be in contemplation and obedience, being witness to the glory of God.

Now we turn to Isaiah 53:1-3. With this chapter we begin to see the mission and purpose of God’s Messiah. An objective reader of these Scriptures will see that the One mentioned here describes no one else but the Lord Jesus Christ. It is this chapter that was read by the Ethiopian official and interpreted by Philip the evangelist that led to a salvation (Acts 8:26-46). It is a witness to both Jew and Gentile. There are observations to be made in the beginning verse that detail what the Servant of Jehovah is like. Let us study them.

The Amazing News is Rejected (v.1).

Isaiah asks who will believe what is stated here.

It is a note of what Isaiah would face in his own prophetic mission (Isaiah 6:9-10).

Jesus would prophesy about the consequences of not heeding His word (Matthew 23:38; Luke 10:13-16).

The nation’s hardness of heart meant that others would hear the message (Acts 13: 46-48).

The Amazing Appearance Is Rejected (v.2).

He comes from a line that is apparently dried up – namely, the royal line of David (2 Samuel 7:16).

He comes from a humble background; He wears no regalia nor does He look like a warrior-king (John 1:43-51).

He bears no beauty. He looks like an average man with no outstanding characteristics (2 Corinthians 8:9; Philippians 2:7-8).

The Amazing Attitude of the Nation (v.3)

The nation would despise and reject Him (Matthew 27: 32-44).

The Servant will be a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. He identifies with the people (Hebrews 4:14-16; John 12:27, 11:35)

The nation would turn its back on Him, despising and holding Him in low esteem.

We see this throughout the ministry of Jesus (Mark 3:1-6; Matthew 16:1, 19:3).

We see this as an apt description of the world in general (Matthew 13:15; Romans 1:28; 2 Peter 3:5).

The consequences of rejecting the Servant are horrid (Revelation 20:11-15).

As we delve further into this passage of Scripture, we will be getting a clearer portrait of our Lord Jesus. But, aren’t the words of Isaiah appropriate for our day? The world continues to reject Him, and they’re getting more vicious about it. Still, we must not falter. The Great Commission is still in effect until He comes to take us home, either in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; John 14:1-3; 1 Corinthians 15:51-54) or through death (John 11:25). Either way, we win! It is the world that will suffer the tragic consequences.

In the meantime, I encourage all pastors and preachers who may be reading this to use this outline for a sermon or Bible study. All I ask is that I get credit for the idea. In the meantime, keep on working for Him and remember that the greatest reward we can get is to see Him face to face one day. I’m looking forward to it.