Posts Tagged ‘Isaiah’

Project 66 – Isaiah

It was tough to choose just a singular portion of Isaiah. So much great stuff, especially in the last 27 chapters of the book.

Perhaps you have heard the book of Isaiah compared to the Bible as a whole, since it has 66 chapters, just as the Bible has 66 books.

The first chapter begins with sin and transgression while chapter 39 ends with negative consequences and captivity. (The Old Testament has 39 books)

Then springs forth chapter 40 with great comfort, carrying it all the way through the 27 chapters to 66th as it closes in with a new heaven and a new earth. (The New Testament has 27 books)

The central chapter of the second portion of Isaiah is the 53rd chapter just as the central theme of the New Testament is the Cross.

Interestingly, Isaiah is midway between the time of

  • Moses (giver of the law) and
  • Christ (though Whom came Truth and Grace), and
  • in Isaiah we clearly see the distinction between Law and Grace.

So the portion from Isaiah comesĀ fromĀ the central chapter in the second portion of Isaiah, Isaiah 53, which talks about the central theme in the New Testament…

Isaiah 53 – Jesus Christ and His work on the cross

Surely He has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned,
every one,
to his own way;
and the Lord has laid on Him
the iniquity of us all.

All we like sheep have gone astray

I need a Shepherd

It was my grief He bore.

He not only knows my grief, but He bares it for me. I’m sure many have felt nearly swallowed up by overmuch grief, I know I have. So I cannot even begin to imagine how it would utterly crush me altogether if it were not for Christ bearing my grief.

It was my sorrows He carried.

I picture sorrows like an Alfred Hitchcock movie with spiders and roaches crawling all over the body…desparately, maddeningly, swatting and lashing out at them with a complete insanity and inability to do anything else, except to writhe in disgust trying to swipe them away.

But what’s more…sorrows are the vermin of the heart and soul, not the body. And Who will rescue me from the attack of these insidious cockroaches?

Thanks be to God, Jesus Christ has carried away my sorrows to the tree of Calvary.

And though the crowd may have looked on at the time of His crucifixion and determined that Jesus was being punished on the cross for His own sins, yet today, I cannot help but acknowledge, it was for my transgressions, for my iniquities, and all in order that I might have peace, in order that I might be healed.

The truth is it was I who went astray and walked in my own selfish way. The very wanderings that fell me headlong into the pit of poisonous insects and rodents. I want to be the kind of sheep that turns to the Shepherd for guidance rather than brashly making poor choices and suffering for them afterwards.

Just thinking about this portion of Project 66, compels me to thank God with the words from this hymn…

Why would I ever leave the suffering Shepherd’s side who never leaves my side?