Suffering Servant Series, Part 1

Isaiah 52:13-15

The Servant Exalted


Tonight we are beginning a series of studies taking an in depth look at Isaiah 52:13-53:12

A) Title the suffering servant


B) Chapter breaks in the Bible are helpful – helps us all find the right place


C) Sometimes the Chapter breaks seem to be out of place – this is one of those times


Ch.53 really should begin in v.13 of Ch. 52 –

A) Song with 5 stanzas –


    1. God’s Servant Exalted: Isaiah 52:13-15

    2. God’s Humble Servant: Isaiah 53:1-3

    3. The Suffering Servant: Isaiah 53:4-6

    4. The Silent Servant: Isaiah 53:7-9

    5. God’s Servant Satisfied: Isaiah 53:10-12


B) This section of scripture has been called the

MT Everest of the OT – Highest ground


C) Depicts in great detail the suffering of our Savior on the Cross at Calvary


Reading a sermon this week by Joseph Parker who was preaching in the late 1800’s

A) He was commenting then – over 100yrs ago how Churches in his day were shrinking back from talking about the Blood of Christ


B) “A dainty Piety has forced upon us a dainty vocabulary”


C) Listen there is nothing Dainty about Isaiah 53

1) It is very graphic for a reason.


D) Lets read the whole section


Behold my Servant – Many scholars have called this the Echo Homo of the OT

A) Pilate said of Christ – Behold the man –

                   God declares Behold my servant


B) Written by Isaiah 700yrs before Christ was born

1) Dead sea scrolls – 200yrs before Christ found – book of Isaiah in its entirety – this passage included


C) That is important because there are those who try to get rid of these Chapters –

1) Rabbi’s who have tried to espionage this from scripture


D) Because it describes so clearly the suffering of an individual for the sins of the pp.

There are also those who say this is a picture of Israel – the nation is the suffering servant

A) It is true in Isaiah Israel is pictured as the servant of the Lord –


B) But it is always a remnant that is pictured as the servant –

1) Where as the nation as a whole is depicted as suffering in punishment for their rebellion


C) Plus this is clearly in the singular – this is talking about an individual who is being punished not for his own sins but for the sins & iniquities of others


D) Philip in Acts 8 – God takes him from the revival in Samaria – out to the desert – Ethiopian Eunich

1) Reading from Isa 53 – Of whom do these things speak? Philip preached Christ from the passage


Dd) We have clearly come to the highest thing that Isaiah has seen – higher than Isaiah 6 ……..

1) See that is the picture that we would expect to see of Sovereign. God – throne high lifted …train…..


E) What we are reading here is something that is really incomprehensible –

1) Beyond our imagination


BEHOLD MY SERVANT: Look at Gaze upon consider – see clearly.    Isaiah 52:13

13 Behold, My Servant shall deal prudently;

He shall be exalted and extolled and be very high.


It is interesting to note how the father starts this song

A) He takes Jesus and He EXALTS HIM [first thing]


Aa) REASON: Only way to even begin to understand the depths to which he stooped is to get a glimpse of the Heights FROM which he started


B) It is almost as if God is saying:  “I want you to understand as you enter this passage-

1) A passage that will take you down and pull your heart into depths that are unimaginable


C) I want you to Know there is no defeat there!

     I want you to see His Heights first


D) Know that in the depths to which He will stoop – He is accomplishing something – Behold my servant


Prudently= dealing in wisdom, dealing with discretion.

A) Dealing with something in wisdom to the complete end of it to where something is accomplished.


B) Jesus knew why He came – to go to the cross

“Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2


He shall move prudently – accomplishing the purpose from which He came


He will be exalted extolled:  – He will be lifted up, He will be very High. He will rise up. He will raise Himself up.   He will stand even higher.


Scholars have called this:

The commencement: The continuation: The climax


The commencement: The resurrection it all begins here.


The continuation: The ascension


The climax: Seated at the right hand of the Father, where He sits making intercession for the saints.


Picture seen often of Jesus in Scripture:

Ephesians 1:18-21

Philippians 2:1-11


Behold my Servant – He shall accomplish what He set out to do!
A) He shall be exalted – extolled lifted up to the place where
there is only under and there is no over.


B) He will be above everything.

So the Father sets the stage by Exalting Him- He starts that way because in V.14 He says

Just as many were astonished at you,

So His visage was marred more than any man,

And His form more than the sons of men;


Astonished= Astonyed in the Greek made desolate, made waste, paralyzed.  

A) Idea being that what they saw so staggered them it froze them – they were desolate


B) They were laid waste – they were paralyzed by it


C) Note: it doesn’t say that He was marred more than any other human being that has ever lived.


D) No it says his visage: he was a vision of distortion he was a vision of desolation. He was a vision of disfigurement.


Last night I was watching some clips of the passion

A) I like to re watch that movie when we get close to Easter


B) Graphic – but not near as graphic as the real deal

1) Isaiah 50:6 Beard plucked out – still has it in


C) Here Isaiah – says Visage no longer looked man like – he didn’t look like a human being


D) Mel Gibson interviewed: We couldn’t be any more graphic because no one would have been able to stomach it. Couldn’t sit thru it


E) Sobering film: Over – silent sobs – popcorn untouched


Idea behind astonished: Laid waste – made desolate – paralyzed by what they saw!

A) Started with him being beaten – spit upon – blindfolded – beaten some more.


B) Scourged with the Roman Flagellum – many died before it was over.


C) The Process was one of examination: When The criminal was being scourged if he opened his mouth to incriminate others who were involved in the crime


They would lighten up on the beating or stop altogether {Jack Bauer tactic

A) If the criminal stayed quiet – they would lay it on even heavier


B) Jesus was silent as a lamb before his shearers is silent- he opened not his mouth

1) so they laid it on even heavier – he said nothing – which is no doubt what led Pilate to say




It was really miraculous that Jesus was still alive after that beating –

A) When they saw Him beaten so they were paralyzed – made desolate by what they saw


B) Ch. 53:3 We turned our faces from Him


C) What they saw at Calvary was a monstrosity!


The OT tired to depict that!

A) When the worshipper came to worship you brought an OX or a Lamb


B) And the lamb was always inspected for blemishes – it had to be without blemish


C) So the lamb was inspected – the Worshipper was never inspected – it was just taken for granted from the beginning that the worshipper was sinful


D) The lamb had to be spotless – and when the lamb was declared spotless by the priest – you would take your hand …… head – identification transfer


E) Given Knife slit the throat- you would feel it stagger and wrestle as the blood was collected in a golden bowl


F) YOU would feel the animal finally collapse


And you would know that a sinless animal had just died in your place.

A) The animal was then skinned and the head was taken off laid by itself


B) The kidneys and entrails were taken out- and laid around the head –

1) Then the legs were take off and piled on top


C) What you had was a monstrosity!  It no longer looked like a lamb – that was the POINT

1) Because the greater monstrosity would be at Calvary – at Golgotha


D) His visage so marred that he didn’t even look like a man anymore


Even worse – the Sin of all humanity was placed upon Him- a monstrosity beyond imagination

A) From the Heights to unimaginable depths


B) Crucified from before the foundation of the world for my Sin - I put him there {Jews / Romans

1) Mel in the film – hand of the Soldier driving the spike – it was me


C) When a person comes to grasp that reality it is really sobering – life changing –

1) It was my sin.


            2 Corinthians 5:21

For He (God) made Him (Jesus) who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.


Sinless Jesus became Sin filled – that that Sin filled people could become Sin Free


Robert Murray McChenye “God heaped upon His son all of our sins until there was nothing but sin to be seen. He appeared all sin; so that nothing of His own beauty appeared.”


Every tyrant – evil thought etc gossip/ lust


Behold my servant: He shall deal wisely, strongly, completely, to the completion of the thing that He was set forth to do!


He then will be exalted, He will be extolled, He will be lifted up above all,


Because those who saw Him were staggered by what was before their eyes. Because He was mauled and Brutalized beyond any semblance of a human being


He was a vision of distortion he was a vision of desolation. He was a vision of disfigurement.


V.15 So because of this: His brutalized frame and His death – He shall sprinkle many nations

A) Because of His sacrifice He shall sprinkle many nations


B) Idea of sprinkling we find at least 3 times in the OT – Lev 14:7 – Priest sprinkling the leper when he was cleansed


C) Sprinkling of blood upon the head of the worshipper – sins were forgiven


D) Jesus is doing the Sprinkling – He is both the sacrifice and the Sacrificer –

1) He is the offering and He is the Priest


E) How can that be? There is no disparity in that!


The disparity is between the His exaltation and His humiliation

A) Between the Ht of who He was and to the depths to which He went to save us – that is the disparity


B) There is no disparity in scripture between Him being the sacrifice for our sins – and the High Priest who is at the right hand …… lives to make intercession


C) No confusion there – No what is incomprehensible is the Who He was and the degree to which He stooped because of His love for us.


D) He shall sprinkle many nations – He shall cleanse many nations – Sacrifice for ALL pp ALL races

1) All nationalities – stretching to every part of the globe

V.15b Kings shall shut their mouths at Him;

For what had not been told them they shall see,

And what they had not heard they shall consider.

A) Kings and Political leaders silenced


B) ACLU silenced – Today not politically correct to call someone is a sinner – ruin their self esteem


C) Lie from the pit of Hell


No we have to be honest – You are a Sinner – I am a sinner – We are deplorable / twisted / messed up

A) But God valued you and loved you so much as an individual that He sent his son to pay the price


B) Wages of sin is death - Jesus came to die in your place and my place


C) So that we might be sprinkled by his blood – cleansed by his blood – forgiven – made new


D) That my friends is awesome – incredible

1) To know that we are that loved – doesn’t wreck your self esteem –


World leaders will be stunned by Him Psalm 72

8 He shall have dominion also from sea to sea,

And from the River to the ends of the earth.

9 Those who dwell in the wilderness will bow before Him,  And His enemies will lick the dust.


10 The kings of Tarshish and of the isles

Will bring presents; The kings of Sheba and Seba

Will offer gifts.  11 Yes, all kings shall fall down before Him; All nations shall serve Him.


Phil 2 Every knee will bow tongue confess…… Lord


Behold my servant: What do we do with this?

A) I know I need to understand better the Love of Christ


Ephesians 2:7-8  “that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”


B) In the ages to come God will still be revealing the exceeding riches of His grace to us in Christ


C) Paul said Phil 3 – Not that I have apprehended – but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,


Listen our destination is not just a place it is an image – conformed to the image of His death


D) Realize – Less Rob // More of Jesus is the answer

When I see His love in His death – the depths to which He stooped for me – I am embarrassed because my love for Him doesn’t compare –

A) Lazy – Areas of apathy – struggle with my flesh


B) I know the only hope for me is by His Grace


                     Romans 8:31-32

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?”


Key word in that verse is freely – The Christian life is about God freely showing – dispensing the riches of His grace to us who are in Christ