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Summary: Epiphany 2(A) - Great is the Servant of the Lord: Christ. In Christ eternity is revealed. This Savior is rejected. Mankind is redeemed.

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GREAT IS THE SERVANT OF THE LORD (Outline)

January 17, 2010 -

Epiphany 2 -

ISAIAH 49:1-6

INTRO: Much like last week we will study Isaiah’s description of the servant of the Lord. The Lord uses the term servant in a manner far different from how the world views this word. The Creator came in humility to serve his creation. Great is the servant of the Lord. By all outward appearances Jesus came in great humility. Therefore all too many still try to deny Jesus’ divinity. Jesus’ very name reveals his greatness. "Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth" (PHILIPPIANS 2:9,10). The word great and the word servant are not often combined together. We learn God’s truth about his Son, our Savior, Christ the servant of the Lord.

GREAT IS THE SERVANT OF THE LORD.

I. Eternity is revealed.

II. A Savior is rejected.

III. Mankind is redeemed.

I. ETERNITY IS REVEALED

A. Verse 1a. These words of God written by Isaiah are meant for all people throughout the world.

1. Verse 1b. The servant was named, known, and called by the Lord – before his earthly birth.

2. Remember Jesus, as servant was still God’s Son, God. His divinity was hidden by human flesh.

3. From eternity God’s divine purpose was determined. A servant would be needed for mankind.

B. Verse 2. The servant Jesus was kept safe as an arrow in God’s quiver. His words were sharp – true.

C. Jesus revealed eternity to mankind because of God’s chosen purpose. From the very time that man first sinned in the Garden of Eden God chose his eternal Son to be the servant. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection revealed God’s eternal promise made, kept, and fulfilled. The very words of Jesus were also the eternal words of God brought to life. Scriptures reveals God’s eternal truth. Man sins. God’s law reveals the wickedness we try to cover up. "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart" (HEBREWS 4:12). God’s word – eternal, true – does judge.

D. Even in his humanity Jesus was still intimately connected to eternity. As children of God we are also connected to eternity. Our lives are not just a matter of chance. God in his infinite wisdom, mercy, and love has laid out all of the steps of our lives. God has chosen the best for us, always. At times we make the wrong choice. God’s eternal purpose is still a comfort for each of us. "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations" (JEREMIAH 1:5). By grace we live in the light of the knowledge of God’s choice for us.

GREAT IS THE SERVANT OF THE LORD!

Jesus’ words and life reveals God’s eternity for us.

II. A SAVIOR IS REJECTED.

A. Verse 3. God’s promise in this servant (Israel = Jesus’ mission) is to display his splendor or glory.

B. Verse 4a. These words are the humanity of Jesus’ speaking. In flesh Jesus tasted man’s feelings.

1. Jesus’ human side saw disappointment. Judas betrayed him. Peter denied him.

2. All of these events weighed heavily upon the human heart of Jesus. But he did not give up.

3. Verse 4b. In the midst of rejection Jesus turned the purpose and outcome to his Father’s hand.

C. The servant, God’s Son, our Savior faced and endured the rejection of the world. Jesus did it all for us. At times we may feel disappointment in our lives. We may feel forgotten or forsaken. Our lives are filled with difficulties that can seem to overwhelm us. We will want to focus less on ourselves so that we can focus on God. When we focus on Christ we learn from his example. "Humble yourselves, there-fore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you" (1 PETER 5:6,7). In our uncaring and selfish world God cares for us – still and always.

D. It is important for us to always remember that our loving Lord always makes everything always work out for our good. Our heavenly Father uses his power to protect and preserve his followers against the evil at work in this wicked world. God’s love holds us fast in the shadow of his hand. In chapter 8 of the book of Romans there is a long list of enemies that would try to separate us from the love of God. The can not. "What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?"(ROM. 8:31).

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