The prophet Isaiah gives his Old Testament readers a window into the future with his prophecies about the Suffering Servant. The Old Testament Christians knew that this Suffering Servant would give his life for his people. God’s people could not bring themselves by effort up to God’s level of perfection, so God took our place, lowered himself to our level, and raised us up. In Isaiah 53 we see that sacrifice in detail.
In our sermon for today, the Suffering Servant is just starting his ministry. It’s as if we get to go on location for an exclusive interview with the Son of God. We get to see what he was thinking and what the outcome would be. It wasn’t always positive. There were times our Savior felt like his efforts weren’t working. The outcome is in the Lord’s hands.
There will be times when it feels as though we are just spinning our wheels. Nothing that we do makes any difference. People don’t listen. We aren’t appreciated. That is true in most areas of life. When it comes to our Christian witness it can be the same way. Does anyone believe what we say? Does anyone care about our God? The results are in the Lord’s hands.
In fact, just when we would think about reigning in our goals and expectations, God goes the opposite direction. The Father tells his Son that it is too small a thing to just save Jacob (God’s chosen people of Israel). Jesus sacrifice is going to be for the whole world! That is some big news! That is what the season of Epiphany is all about. God revealing his Son to the world.
To hear more, watch this Sunday’s sermon taken from Isaiah 49.