Isaiah 51-55 reading this past week describes emphatically how Jesus was tortured before and while on the Cross at Calvary. Specifically chapters 52-53 are grotesquely descriptive. But before we get to that section of scripture, a passage found in Isa. 52:7 speaks of the “Beautiful feet of those who preach/proclaim the Good News of the Gospel. This verse is found also in Romans 10:15; where it detail a number of questions about how will people hear, unless they are called, sent, went and obedient to the calling of proclaiming the Gospel. I found this especially noteworthy, in that I just returned from a IMB parents of Missionaries conference. These verses were preached about for those who have answered the call so that the nations will hear the good news. Beautiful feet, odd compliment for someone who proclaims the Gospel, unless you are on the receiving end of this good news. The points of the speakers were that someone had to send, someone had to go, and someone had to be obedient to the task. The task isn’t just for missionaries or pastors; but for all people of God to proclaim the Good News that Jesus loves them and Jesus saves!
Now looking specifically at Isaiah 52:13-15; a description of the Messiah. He will have public acclaim; the people will lift him up in popularity and notoriety. Yet quickly this is followed by how he looks, “his visage [body] was marred more than any man.” The beatings Jesus took along the way to the Cross would have killed any mere man; he was beaten by the Jews, Mocked and ridiculed. Then by a garrison of roman soldiers  men; beat him with rods and their fists, pulling his beard from his face. As if that wasn’t enough, Pilate had Jesus scourged to try to pacify the Jews into releasing Jesus. It didn’t work as a bloody mangled, mutilated piece of flesh, then Jesus was required to carry His cross to Calvary. I do not know how he endured such traumatic loss of blood and the severe shock to his body. It is said that the flesh was literally ripped off his bones, the nerves and tissue flayed from His bones.
In Isaiah 53, a more accurate account of Isaiah 52:14; we initially get the lineage of Jesus, a “shoot from the root of Jesse” depicting His tribal ancestry to Judah and King David. We find that it wasn’t Jesus’ looks that made Him attractive to people, but His works and works. I guess if I were living back then, I may have missed Jesus because he was just a common ordinary looking man, another face in the crowd so to speak.
John 1:11; says He came unto His own but His own received Him not – they rejected Him – but it was the religious rulers, not the common hurting people of the day. I wonder how much Jesus would endure from us if He was here today? He was despised and forsaken, this speaks of how they wanted to kill Him, also about the stone of stumbling and rock of offense He was. Yet He is the chief corner-stone, which God used to bring salvation to the nations. It is odd that Jesus was rejected by His own people, and in the grace of God, we [non-Jews] are given access to the free gift of salvation. Jesus is acquainted with grief, and sorrow, he took on our sorrows, sins. Jesus took our penalty for our disobedience and sin against the Father. We deserved every strip of the whip, we deserved every blow to His body; yet He took it all for ME!! Listen to these words – pierced, crushed, scourging, chastening and iniquity. All descriptive of what Jesus took that was ours. Surely we must see the reality of – “BY HIS STRIPES WE ARE HEALED”! Yet Jesus said not a single word, like a sheep before His slaughters is silent. But then it says in verse 10 – “It pleased the Father to crush Him” – Why how can that be pleasing? It is pleasing to the Father for now there can be reconciliation and restoration with His creation. Jesus is the advocate and restitution for man’s sins that we may come boldly to the Father based on His sacrifice. Yet Jesus is still at work – having paid the penalty, defeated death and Satan; He now makes intercession for us before the Father. WHen Satan accuses us [and we are guilty] Jesus pleads our case, not because we are innocent, but because He has redeemed us from ALL sin – there is no debt, there is no charge – It is Finished! And the Father looks at His Son and says – Justified upon the basis of the Lamb of God’s sacrifice. And that’s how Jesus purchased my salvation – praise God, praise God Amen.