By Jackie Shaw
Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. (Isaiah 53:1-7)
Think back to when you were a child. Were you ever “caught in the act?” Were you ever “caught in someone else’s act?” Maybe you cried out, “But it wasn’t me!”—only to receive the punishment that belonged to someone else.
Now put yourself in Jesus’ shoes. It wasn’t one person’s sins or even 100 people’s sins. He suffered for all of our sins. This passage gives us a very real picture of Christ’s physical suffering. He was “pierced.” He was “crushed.” He was beaten in ways that we can’t even imagine. Yet the text states that “he did not open his mouth.” He didn’t say, “Stop!” He didn’t plead for mercy. He didn’t do anything to lessen the beating that was given to him. He endured the pain, silently and willing, so that by his wounds all of humanity—past, present, and future—could be healed.
What would you be willing to endure for the ones you love?
Lord Jesus, thank you for your infinite love and for the suffering you so willingly endured that I may be forgiven and healed of my sins. May I always remember your ultimate sacrifice so that I may have the confidence of eternal life with you. Amen.