Isaiah 52-53: Good News in the Epic Prophecy Fulfilled by Jesus

These next scripture verses can be called “The Gospel According to Isaiah”. These words were written 7 centuries before Jesus fulfilled them. 200 years before crucifixion was invented by the Persians and 500 years before the Romans adapted it as their main form of capital punishment. Isaiah describes in great detail what Jesus experienced in His trial, torture, and crucifixion.

Ironically, many Jewish groups eliminate Isaiah 53. Some say it’s not Jesus, but Israel. However, many a Jew, in reading this chapter with sincere open hearts, have believed in Yeshua Hamashiach — Jesus Messiah. I pray that this Living Word of God will touch your heart and your soul. Let’s dig in….

We’re starting where we left off in chapter 52….

Isaiah 52 – The Lord’s Suffering Servant

13 See, my servant will prosper;
    he will be highly exalted.
14 But many were amazed when they saw him.
    His face was so disfigured he seemed hardly human,
    and from his appearance, one would scarcely know he was a man.
15 And he will [cleanse] many nations.
    Kings will stand speechless in his presence.
Those who have never been told about him will see, and those who have never heard of him will understand.

Isaiah 52 NLT

Isaiah 53

Who has believed our message?
    To whom has the Lord revealed his powerful arm?
My servant grew up in the Lord’s presence like a tender green shoot,
    like a root in dry ground.
There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance,
    nothing to attract us to him.
He was despised and rejected—
    a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief.
We turned our backs on him and looked the other way.
    He was despised, and we did not care.

Yet it was our weaknesses he carried;
    it was our sorrows (sickness / diseases) that weighed him down.
And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God,
    a punishment for his own sins!
But he was pierced for our rebellion,
    crushed for our sins.
He was beaten so we could be whole.
    He was whipped so we could be healed.
All of us, like sheep, have strayed away.
    We have left God’s paths to follow our own.
Yet the Lord laid on him
    the sins of us all.

He was oppressed and treated harshly,
    yet he never said a word.
He was led like a lamb to the slaughter.
    And as a sheep is silent before the shearers,
    he did not open his mouth.
Unjustly condemned,
    he was led away. (Humiliated and received no justice.)
No one cared that he died without descendants,
    that his life was cut short in midstream.
But he was struck down
    for the rebellion of my people.
He had done no wrong
    and had never deceived anyone.
But he was buried like a criminal;
    he was put in a rich man’s grave.

10 But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush him
    and cause him grief.
Yet when his life is made an offering for sin,
    he will have many descendants.
He will enjoy a long life,
    and the Lord’s good plan will prosper in his hands.
11 When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish,
    he will be satisfied.
And because of his experience,
    my righteous servant will make it possible
for many to be counted righteous,
    for he will bear all their sins.
12 I will give him the honors of a victorious soldier,
    because he exposed himself to death.
He was counted among the rebels.
    He bore the sins of many and interceded for rebels.

Isaiah 53 NLT

How Can This Suffering Be Good News?

Somebody had to pay for our sins and that person was Jesus.

The Essence of Sin:

  • We are far apart from God — we don’t go to church, don’t read the Bible, don’t pray.
  • We rebel against God — do the exact opposite of His commandments
  • We seek to please ourselves rather than God — pride, vanity, lust, gluttony, etc.

The Sin-Bearing Servant

  • Jesus’ external appearance was nothing extraordinary. He blended in with the population of Israel. Yet, it was His Heart, mood, mild-mannered character, truth and honesty that was beautiful.
  • He was the spotless lamb led to slaughter. Quiet. Didn’t argue, didn’t stand up for Himself, He took it all without uttering a word.
  • He was beaten beyond recognition. John in Revelation 5:6 writes, “Then I saw a Lamb that looked as if it had been slaughtered…”
  • The Messiah will cleanse the nations — not just Israel, but the whole world. (John 3:16-17)
  • Jesus quoted Isaiah 53:1 in John 12:38.
  • He was rejected. The same people who had cheered for Him as King and Messiah on Palm Sunday, yelled “Crucify Him!” on Friday.
  • He was wounded — pierced — in his hands, feet, head and side.
  • God’s justice demanded that someone pay for the world’s sin. His mercy, grace and love provided the redemption through His Son.
  • Jesus was whipped severely. By those “stripes” we are healed. Healed from the disease and sickness of sin.

Peter wrote…

He personally carried our sins
    in his body on the cross
so that we can be dead to sin
    and live for what is right.
By his wounds
    you are healed.

1 Peter 2:24 NLT

It was all Planned — Ordained by God

Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.

Hebrews 12:2 NLT

Lastly, Jesus was crucified among thieves, criminals, rebels.

39 One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!”

40 But the other criminal protested, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? 41 We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.”

43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

Luke 23:39-43 NLT

Notice Jesus didn’t say to the criminal, but first you must go through purgatory to further cleanse yourself. NO! Purgatory doesn’t exist! It was an invention of the Roman Catholic Church. You can read all about it here.

Because HE bore our sins on the cross, we can be called RIGHTEOUS — REDEEMED — SAVED!

If we stay in Christ, there is nothing for God to judge. By faith in Him, we are safe and saved. Once saved, always saved! Hallelujah!

Jesus didn’t suffer torture and die so we could have religion! He died so He could have a Relationship with YOU!

Simply just…

Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.

  • Believe — have Faith — that Jesus is the Christ and He died taking your sins away forever and that He rose from the dead 3 days later.
  • Repent of your sins — stop sinning! Do a complete 180-degree turn in your life and surrender your life to Him. When you ask Jesus to forgive you He will. ALL your sins will be wiped clean — past, present, and future! And All means ALL!
  • Be Baptized by water baptism — show the world and yourself that you have died to your old life and are born again in Christ.
  • Receive the gift of Holy Spirit in your heart.

Invite Jesus into Your Heart and Receive the Gift of Grace and Confident Hope of Eternal Life…

Further Study

Handel’s Messiah — All We Like Sheep


The Only Scars in Heaven


Soli Deo Gloria! To God Alone Be the Glory!

Left Behind After the Rapture Series