Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.
He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
a bruised reed he will not break,
and a faintly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.
He will not grow faint or be discouraged[a]
till he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands wait for his law.
Thus says God, the Lord,
who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people on it
and spirit to those who walk in it:
“I am the Lord; I have called you[b] in righteousness;
I will take you by the hand and keep you;
I will give you as a covenant for the people,
a light for the nations, to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
from the prison those who sit in darkness.
I am the Lord; that is my name;
my glory I give to no other,
nor my praise to carved idols.
Behold, the former things have come to pass,
and new things I now declare;
before they spring forth
I tell you of them.”
~ Isaiah 42:1-9
We’re a week into our Advent study and we will continue to look at God’s promise of the coming Messiah through tomorrow. God’s Messianic prophecies continue to pop up through the text that Isaiah has penned. This passage in Isaiah 42 allows us to see another facet of beauty of the King that is coming to us.
The picture that many people have of any king is one of grace, wisdom, strength and unbridled power. Christ certainly is every bit of that. His grace is unmatched, His wisdom is that which only comes from above, His strength is able to withstand the full fury of God’s wrath and His power will be on full display as He returns at the Second Coming. In every way, Christ as King is as true of a picture as one could get.
While the imagery of the Messiah was one of regal strength, God paints a picture of the Messiah that unfolds a part of Jesus that is unmistakable – it is seeing Him as a servant. Not only do we see a servant but one who is set to suffer. He’s one who will be bruised (Genesis 3 anyone?) but will not fail until He has brought justice across the face of the planet.
God’s suffering servant will suffer on behalf of many of the people who God had promised judgement on earlier in Isaiah’s prophecies. To the wicked, God brings hope and salvation. To the nations that God has rendered a verdict against, the Judge will take on the punishment. God’s grief over sin was met with a willingness to send His Chosen One to establish justice on the earth by His death, life and resurrection for a world of rebels.
“ I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” ~ Genesis 12:3
Our conquering King will conquer sin and death through the act of suffering. God’s warrior is breaking the strongholds of darkness by bringing light into blind eyes. The light of the world was coming to be “a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.” God Servant was coming to bring His light and salvation to a dark and broken world.
Isaiah 42 is the pattern set for God’s servants to follow in desiring to see captives set free and the blind gaining sight. God’s light will shine across all people of all nations when those of us who are His servants seek to bring His salvation to the world. His light has brought us great good but now the responsibility falls on us to bring Him great glory.
For so the Lord has commanded us, saying,
“‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles,
that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’”
~ Acts 13:47
Will I seek His glory above all else?
Will I suffer to make Him known?
Will I not grow faint until all the world knows?
May God give us all the strength to do so. May we all seek to follow the path of Christ. May we go out and willingly embrace the cross of our coming and suffering King.
Take some time to pray that God will give you a clear opportunity to share His gospel with someone today.