A Study on Isaiah 534 min read
In Isaiah 52, we find the words “He shall be exalted and extolled, and shall be very high.” This is the King of kings and Lord of lords we are looking at in this chapter. He is the Most High, yet He is portrayed as the most humble. What a feat it was for the King of Glory to step down from His lofty throne to this nearly desolate earth covered in sin. The only explanation for this amazing grace is that His love is truly more than tongue can tell. John 21:25 shows this.
His Origin / His Being
One of the main themes in this chapter is His origin and who He is. The Jews expected (and still expect) the Messiah to come as a King. But His origin is clear: He would be as a tender plant, as a root out of a dry ground. His origin was humility, and His person (by man’s opinion) was nothing spectacular either. He is described as having “no form [no extraordinary beauty or strength] or comeliness [majesty].” He was considered merely a regular person, yet He is the King. He stepped down from a place where He was adored by highest Heaven to come to a sin-cursed world to save fallen mankind. He even made Himself of no reputation, as Paul could say. What an act! What king would ever want to sacrifice his very throne to be among rebellious peasants? This King did, and what a sacrifice it was!
His Sufferings: Physical
Not only did He come humbly, but He lived a life of suffering. When it comes to the physical aspect, it’s clear how great His suffering was. Isaiah describes the high and lofty One as being wounded and crushed for sin that was not His own. He suffered many stripes, of which some men would die before even making it to the cross. However, He bore it all, even willingly. How great was our sin that the Father was actually pleased to bruise the precious body of Christ! How great His will that he would purposefully give His back to the smiters and His cheeks to those that would pluck the hair from His face. How great His devotion to give His hands, the same hands that healed multitudes, to those that would pierce them with spikes. How great is our God that he would be willing to be brutally tortured by His creation, yet for them!
His Sufferings: Spiritual
However, more than His physical suffering was that of His spirit. “Man of sorrows, what a name!” The Lord is described as a Man of sorrows, acquainted with grief, one with great travail (as birth pains), despised, rejected, numbered with sinners, etc. Why? Because sin had to be punished, our sin. The only way for God to be satisfied was to punish sin fully by His judgment. This was more than what man could do; this was spiritual wrath. This was greater than anyone could bear, for it included eternal darkness, being God-forsaken, and His judgment. Yet Christ bore it all. He was in spiritual darkness, forsaken by His own God, and suffered an eternity of punishment compressed into three hours. This was the price our sins demanded. Yet Christ bore it ALL, all for us, the ones who deserved to bear it. Should this not melt our heart to tears when we realize that the very King of Glory, the Lord of Hosts, died?
What a provision was made by this! Let’s put this into perspective. When one lies, he actually commits at least three sins: 1. He lied. 2. He did not put God first. 3. He contradicted his conscience (James 4:17). Also, one who is not saved is actually living in sin, because he is serving Satan, constantly being against God. Even the sacrifice (the things one does to please God, even their prayers) of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord. How sinful are we! Yet He loved us enough to die and take the full punishment for our sins! Because of Christ’s sufferings, God saw the travail of His soul and was “SATISFIED”, eternally. This provision is beyond description. To think of a thankless, unholy sinner being reconciled to the most holy God is unimaginable. Yet it happened through Christ. “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus.” Rom 8:1. Not a day should go by when we do not bow before the throne of extreme, unthinkable grace in thanks for His Son!
The apostle Paul rested contently in the cross of Christ; so can we. Truly “The life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” The King came to be a humble servant. Seeing what He did, how much more now should we do for Him!