Come to the Healer (Isaiah 53:4-5)
Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed. —Isaiah 53:4-5
In recent months I have seen videos on social network about some Israelites who had never been exposed to the message of Isaiah 53 and who, upon hearing this message, were impressed because they saw Jesus there. The truth is that I do not know about the veracity of these videos; but this should be the natural reaction of those who read about the historical Jesus and read the prophecy that was written hundreds of years before. However, what fills me with sadness is listening to preachers pretending to prove that the suffering servant to whom the passage refers is none other than the people of Israel. But what does this passage tell us of this Servant?
He "was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities." His full name could well be “a man of sorrows, experienced in brokenness” (v. 3). The reality is that we have gone astray like sheep, each one has turned aside on his own way (v. 6). In our text, God calls what we did against Him, ‘diseases.’ And the prophet had already described it this way: “…Every head is diseased …From the sole of the foot to the head there is no soundness in it…” (1:5-6).
This is why our real need is to be healed. The Psalmist says “heal my soul: for I have sinned against you” (Psalm 41:4). And the way God does it is by sending His Son to be nailed to the cross, enduring the punishment of our sins, and thereby satisfying His divine justice; His wounds healed our wounds (1 Peter 2:24).
But in addition, here we can see represented all the brokenness of humanity. In its broadest sense, our text contains the full scope of the gospel. All that beauty that was disfigured, in Paradise will be restored—this land that moans, a humanity that suffers plagues and diseases, suffering by the effect of the sin of evil men—will no longer be. Praise our Lord!
But there is something we cannot ignore, and it is our attitude towards him. Mankind rejected the Light of the world (John 1:10-11). The Jews thought that he deserved to die for his blasphemy (John 19:7), others assumed that he suffered the punishment of his own sins. And that is why men can be exposed to passages like this, and instead of exclaiming “Lord, thank you for your ineffable gift,” justify their wrong postures. Professing to be wise, they became fools.
Friend, have you come to the point of seeing your condition as God really sees it—the worst of diseases? Child of God, consider that it was a task that he assumed, he did not entrust it to anyone else. This is the personal aspect of His sacrifice. When someone gives you something, and says, “I did it with my own hands,” doesn’t it have more meaning and value? Oh, think how much your life can be the reflection of a heart that values these truths.