By August 13, 2018 Read More →

Isaiah 53: Isaiah’s Lamb

Verse 7 is a key verse in the chapter. It speaks of one “led like a lamb to the slaughter” whom we understand to be Jesus Christ who was crucified.

  • When the man from Ethiopia was reading this chapter as he rode home in his chariot, he was puzzled as to whom this “lamb” might be. He asked Philip the evangelist to explain it to him, and Philip “preached Jesus to him”. (Acts 8:26-39).
  • John the Baptizer heralded Jesus as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29).
  • In the vision John had of Heaven, he saw “a Lamb standing as if slain”and this Lamb was honoured and worshipped as God (Revelation 5:6,12-14).

We therefore take Isaiah chapter 53 as a prophecy about Jesus Christ.

The Lamb’s life:

Isaiah 53:1-4

Verses 1 to 4 show three important aspects of the life of Jesus Christ. The four accounts of the life of Jesus, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, portray him in the same manner.

Not a man of outward appearance

Belief in Jesus is based on what one sees in the heart of Jesus, and in the words that came from his heart. He was a king who did not look like a king. Therefore true believers in him are few (Isaiah 53:1-2).

A man of sorrows

The life of Jesus Christ was a hard one, in that most people did not esteem him as he deserved. Many followed him in a shallow way and later left him (John 6:66-71). Others, as Isaiah predicted, actually despised him (Isaiah 53:3-4).

Led an exemplary life

Jesus was a good man, bearing other people’s griefs and sorrows in the good works that he did (Isaiah 53:4, Matthew 8:17).

There is another reference, later in the chapter, to the goodness of Jesus, that he never committed any violence or deceit (Isaiah 53:9).

The Lamb’s death:

Isaiah 53:5-9

Verses 5 to 9 show three important aspects of the death of Jesus Christ. The very name “Lamb of God” would have no significance but for the death of Jesus Christ.

Suffered in our stead

In verses 5-7, Isaiah emphasis’s that Jesus Christ’s punishment and death is vicarious.

Suffered silently

Jesus died with the meek submission of a lamb. He did not revile or curse those who punished him. “He did not open his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7).

Suffered unjustly

The passage ends with the injustice of his death. He was taken from life “even though he had committed no violence, nor was any deceit found in his mouth” (Isaiah 53:9).

The Lamb’s glory:

Isaiah 53:10-12

God’s plan and pleasure

Verse 10 speaks of God being “pleased to crush him” and says that “the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in his hand”.



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