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 wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes 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. (Is 53:4–6) NKJ
Sometimes called the “Old Testament Gospel” or the “Book of Salvation” Isaiah is arguably one of the most difficult Old Testament books to understand (at least it was for me). I stumbled across a message that developed a very good overview of Isaiah and this helped me see the forest for the proverbial trees. Let me explain. In chapters 1-39 are judgment, a lot of judgment. In chapters 40-66 however Isaiah has a response to this judgment which we as Gentiles would call “good news” (ie the gospel). This good news is divided into3- 9 chapter sections that respond to the first 39 chapters of judgment. Chapters 40-48 are salvation from Babylonian captivity. This salvation interestingly enough starts out with (40:3) a voice crying in the wilderness much like John the Baptist is in Matthew 3. Isaiah then moves on to salvation (spiritual) from sin in chapters 49-57. This is where our memory verse comes from so we will come back to this section. The final 9 chapters are salvation from eschatological (future) judgment.
Before we jump right into our memory verse there are a few other verses you may want to put into your verse bag for future memory work (unless you already know them) that make very clear why you are memorizing God’s Word. Is. 40:8 states “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.” Isn’t it encouraging to be memorizing God’s Word that will stand forever. Why will it stand forever, because it’s God’s Word. Notice one of the last verses in Isaiah makes a very awesome observation: “All these things my hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the LORD. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word. (Is 66:2)
Isaiah 53 answers the question: How can a sinner be right with God as to escape eternal hell and enter eternal heaven?
Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Jesus has literally satisfied God’s righteous wrath on sin. Jesus has paid one time the price for sin by His death, burial and resurrection.
Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed. Not an Old Testament name it and claim it pattern for healing but a very literal satisfaction carried out by the Love of God for the satisfaction of sin. By his death, God’s righteous and just satisfaction heals our debt of sin.
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. Foreordained by God, Peter makes a very convincing case that this was not an accident: “this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.” (Ac 2:23–24) and again in his epistle “according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.” (1 Pe 1:2) Peter goes on to explain this is what it means to be born again, to be made right with God. His sacrifice, our forgiveness. John makes very clear in 1 Jn 2:1-2 “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” Jesus truly paid it all. His Word stands forever, who will the Lord look, to the one who is humble in heart and trembles at His Word.
Do you tremble at His Word? Keep memorizing and thinking deeply.