Summary: Isaiah 53 “looks as if it had been written beneath the cross upon Golgotha.” Many believe this is the best single chapter in the whole Bible to explain what happened on the cross.

Today, I want to invite believers both here and a Cross Church to participate with us as we take the Lord’s Supper. We are devoting ourselves to a study of one of the powerful chapters in the Bible. Nowhere in all the Old Testament does the gospel shine more brilliantly than in Isaiah 53. I hope this chapter becomes one of your favorites as move through the series.

Why Isaiah 53 at Easter? Isaiah 53 “looks as if it had been written beneath the cross upon Golgotha.” Many believe this is the best single chapter in the whole Bible to explain what happened on the cross. Sit back and listen to this song and hear from the very voice of God Himself.

“Behold, my servant shall act wisely; he shall be high and lifted up, and shall be exalted. 14 As many were astonished at you— his appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of the children of mankind— 15 so shall he sprinkle many nations. Kings shall shut their mouths because of him, for that which has not been told them they see, and that which they have not heard they understand. 1 Who has believed what he has heard from us? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? 2 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. 3 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. 4 Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 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. 6 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. 7 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. 8 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? 9 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. 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. 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. 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 52:13–53:12)

Here’s a brief overview of who Isaiah simply calls a “servant.” Isaiah shows us a portrait of no ordinary man. In these 5 stanzas we see someone who has an extraordinary love for those who hate and abuse him. Focus on the “servant” by looking at the 2nd stanza, verses 1-3. Along the path of today’s message, pick up on this theme: Promise made … promise kept.

I want you to notice that Isaiah is so sure of his prediction that he uses the past tense in verse two. Even though he is speaking of Someone who is yet to come and will not come for another 7 centuries, He is so sure of Jesus’ coming, He uses the past tense.

1. I Got This

For the believers in the room, think back with me at the circumstances surrounding your conversion. Can you remember the first time you heard the gospel? Think with me about the “coincidences” surrounding your time when you came to faith in Christ. Most stories of our conversions have a strange mixture of guilt and curiosity about Jesus. There’s guilt there where you used to just “blow off” your sins. Yet, you could not do that any longer. Do you remember how you lacked the self-assurance you had in the past? Remember how tentative you were when your life began to fall apart right around this time? Do you remember how you began to hear the gospel from friends and family members in what seemed like an accident after accident? The girls you work with were talking about Jesus and them you were channel-surfing when you paused when there was someone talking about the gospel. You used to be able to blow this stuff off but something tells you to pay attention to the gospel.

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