Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.
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.
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. – Isaiah 53:4-6
Seven to eight hundred years before Jesus came, Isaiah prophesied about the Servant of God. He has borne our grief and carried our sorrows. Yes, while He was here, He was able to sympathize with our weaknesses. But that’s a secondary application. Primarily, when sin entered the world, so did grief and sorrow. They are the effects of the fall. And part Jesus’s work was to end that grief and sorrow in eternity.
But we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. When unbelieving Jews looked on the Savior’s suffering, they wrongly assumed that the suffering was caused by Jesus’s own sin.
But He was pierced for our transgressions. Jesus was pierced in several ways: the crown of thorns forced onto His head, nails driven into His hands and feet, a Roman spear thrust into His side. And He endured that to pay the penalty due the sins of those who believe in Him.
He was crushed for our iniquities. Being “crushed” was a Hebraism for enduring great suffering, and Jesus indeed was crushed. Not only did He suffer physically, but the wrath of His Father due us was poured onto Him, and yet He had never sinned Himself.
Upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His wounds we are healed. The gospel in ten seconds.
Isaiah may have only had Israel in mind when he wrote, all we like sheep have gone astray. Regardless, it is our story too. Oh, glorious ending: and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Sheep, be refreshed by these words this morning. It is because of Christ’s suffering as a servant that you are labeled a child of God and not a rebel. It is by His wounds that you are healed.