Summary: Lent series focusing on different aspect of tears in the Bible.
Jesus: Man of Sorrows
March 9, 2014 - Lent 1
If you weren’t aware of it, Fat Tuesday was this past Tuesday. Fat Tuesday is also called Mardi Gras. Traditionally, it’s a time of celebration. There are parades, parties, balls and if you’re in New Orleans lots of partying. It’s a celebration which comes before Lent. It’s kind of like saying, since I am going to fast or give something up for a period of time, I may as well gorge myself beforehand.
As of Wednesday, we’ve entered a period called Lent. Lent is kind of like Advent, which is the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Lent is the period which is leading us to Easter. It’s a time when people will fast, repent, give up something in remembrance of Christ giving up His life for us. People will give up sweets or pop, or coffee, or something in remembrance of Jesus. This year, I’ve decided to give up celery. Actually, I think I’ll make it a year long fast.
Well, with that in mind, over the next several weeks, as we move toward Easter, I’m going to be preaching about different events from the life of Jesus, but to begin we’re going to look at a passage which foretells some of the events in the life of Jesus and I want to ask a question with it. Then, over the next weeks, we will look at passages in which tears were involved, for Jesus and others.
If you have your Bibles, would you turn to the book of Isaiah 53. Isaiah is in the OT. A Little more than ½ back in the OT. We are going to look at Isaiah 53:1-5, then move to a passage from the New Testament.
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.
Sometimes, maybe too often, people question and wonder about a question Philip Yancey asked in his book, The Jesus I Never Knew. In that book, Yancy asked the question, “Does God care about the misery down here, the grief of our lives?” Yancey speaks of human life as a drama in which God, the “unseen Stage Manager,” came out from behind the curtain and got acquainted with grief in person. He wrote, “In Jesus, God lay down on the dissection table, as it were, stretched out in cruciform posture for the scrutiny of all the skeptics who ever lived.”
The passage from Isaiah is so rich with words about the suffering which was going to happen to Jesus. So much so, that this section of Isaiah is called “The Suffering Servant,” and it refers to Jesus.
Jesus was literally despised and rejected by the very people He came for. Imagine in your life if the people you are supposed to be closest to, your family, rejected you? Imagine one day your friends look at you . . . and they begin to mock you, laugh at you, reject you, despise you. They see you coming and they go a different way so they don’t have to pass you . . . and if they do, they glare at you and say those nasty things that only you can hear.
In many respect that was a big part of Jesus’ life. He should have been exalted! People should have understood who this man was, but He didn’t fit into their nice and neat package of who the Messiah should be. I wonder if Jesus were walking the streets of Alexandria, would we be the same way as the Pharisees and reject Him as well. Would we join the naysayers, the mockers, the religious elite, because we think we know, when we really have no clue?
So, if this Jesus is really real. If He came as Isaiah tells us in verses 4-5, that this Man of Sorrows, this Man who was despised and rejected . . . came for you and I to bear our griefs and sorrows, then why would we reject Him? Why would we not jump in with all we have? Isaiah gives us such a clear picture, I mean how can we miss it ~