God’s Good Pleasure
Jesus Christ is the greatest man who has ever walked upon this earth. After only having three years of ministry, He made a resounding impact which is seen through the world. Hospitals, orphanages, and schools are built to honor Jesus Christ. People help others and say they are kind, because of having known Jesus.
The life of Jesus impacts every person who has lived, is alive today, or will live in the future.
But, to say that Jesus is all about establishing hospitals and orphanages and being kind to one another is to miss the main point of Jesus’ life. The Bible says that Jesus is God in the form of a man and that He comes to save people from eternal damnation. Jesus is the Savior of the world.
There is only one Savior sent by God and God wants us to be able to identify Him when He comes. God inspires Isaiah to write about Jesus 700 years before He is born. Isaiah identifies Jesus as the Messiah, which means Savior. The prophetic details of Jesus in Isaiah describe His life many times.
Today, we are looking at the final stanza of Isaiah’s five-stanza prophetic poem. We have great faith in knowing the poem is about Jesus. All four gospels quote this poem and confirm that it speaks about Jesus.
God speaks to our hearts with the Bible. The Bible is a comfort because we learn that God is good. The Bible is also a warning. God is holy and He is judge over good and evil. Every person will stand before the judgment seat of God.
The last three verses of Isaiah’s poem teach us how we may prepare to stand before God’s judgment seat. These verses teach that we are to put our faith in Jesus Christ, the Righteous One, to receive forgiveness of sins and eternal blessing.
Fifth Stanza – The Messiah’s Victory
Jesus is God’s Wrath Bearer
But the Lord was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand. (Isaiah 53:10)
In this verse, the “Lord” is God, the Creator of the Universe. God is pleased to crush “Him” and put “Him” to grief.
Who is it that God is pleased to crush? Who does God want to pulverize?. It must be a very bad person. The Him (and all the other pronouns) is Jesus Christ.
God declares that He is pleased to crush Jesus and put Jesus to grief. This is a very difficult statement. Is God a violent God who enjoys death? If we read the Bible, we know the answer is no. We cannot say that God enjoys killing.
God takes no pleasure in killing Jesus. What this verse is saying is that God finds great pleasure in the outcome of Jesus’ death. The reason for God’s pleasure is that Jesus’ presents Himself as a guilt offering. God is pleased that Jesus offers His life as a sacrifice for guilty sinners.
God crushes Jesus to satisfy His justice. God is perfect, holy, and just in His judgment of sin. He declares sin and rebellion as evil. If God does not judge evil, He is not a good God. Imagine eternity knowing that evil goes unpunished. If God allows evil to exist eternally, He is not good. Sin and rebellion must be punished.
God crushes Jesus to satisfy His love. God loves His people. God desires to save His people because He is good. God desires His people to enjoy the pleasure of His company. It is His nature to be loving. God’s justice and His love. People are guilty of sinning against God, and there must be a punishment.
Jesus is God the Son. Jesus knows that God loves His people and that they are guilty of sin. So, God the Son says to God the Father, “I will stand in their place. I will take the punishment they deserve. Crush Me, and put Me to grief so that Your people may be saved.”
Isaiah refers to Jesus as God’s Servant. Jesus serves God and pleases God with His obedience. Jesus is a willing Servant who obeys to the point of being willing to be crushed by God in our place. Jesus is God’s wrath bearer (He carries God’s anger on Himself). He is a guilt offering, so that God’s people have a way of escaping God’s wrath.
God is pleased to crush Jesus because He is worthy. Jesus is willing to obey to the point of great suffering and death. Jesus is a Servant who carries out the task lovingly. He takes the punishment, because He loves the ones for whom He lays down His life. Jesus is full of truth and wisdom. He knows full well what He is doing. And, Jesus is innocent and holy. He is the perfect offering. A guilty man may not take the punishment for another guilty man. Jesus willingly dies as an innocent guilt offering.
God is pleased and rewards His Servant. When Jesus is killed on the cross, people deny Him of having generations. Jesus is denied the joy of having sons, daughters, grandchildren, and offspring. When Jesus is killed on the cross, people make the decision, “Not one more day of life for You. Your days are over Jesus. Your days of prospering are over.”
But, people are not God. God is in complete control over all things. Men may kill, but the number of our days belongs to God. Men may try to cut us off from having future generations, but God is the One who determines when our prospering comes to an end.
God looks upon His Servant and says, “Well done!”
God rewards Jesus with offspring. Jesus receives the gift of people from God who come from every tribe, nation, and who speak every language.
God gives Jesus the prolonging of His days. Jesus death is not the end of His life. God walks into Jesus’ tomb and says, “Rise! Awaken My Servant. I am pleased.”
God raises Jesus from the dead and Jesus walks out of the grave having eternal life. His days are prolonged eternally.
And, God gives Jesus prosperity in His hand. All that God owns, God gives to Jesus. All the pleasures of God belong to Jesus. Jesus went from being a humble, obedient Servant to being the mighty, King of kings, and Lord of lords.
God glorifies Jesus because Jesus offers Himself up as a guilt offering.
Jesus our guilt offering
Therefore! Always read the Bible asking, “What is God wanting me to know?” God wants us to know there is a way of escaping the punishment we deserve.
Jesus is a guilt offering. A guilt offering is a sacrifice made to God while admitting being guilty. Only guilty people present a guilt offering before God.
If you think you are not guilty of breaking God’s laws, you are a fool. Everyone is guilty of breaking God’s laws. We don’t love and obey God as we should. We don’t love others as we should. We are all guilty disobeying God’s commands.
A guilt offering in the Bible is an unblemished lamb without a spot. The guilty person confesses their sin and places their sin upon the offering and the lamb is sacrificed. By faith, the sins are removed, and the person is forgiven.
In verse 10, Isaiah uses the same word he uses earlier in the song. He says, Jesus is killed for our transgressions and crushed for our sins (Isaiah 53:5). All the scourging, grief, and anguish Jesus suffers is for our sin, not His. We deserve what Jesus receives for a punishment. Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. If we confess our sins, God takes our sin and places it on Jesus.
The Bible is very clear. We must turn from our wicked ways and believe in Jesus. We must believe we are sinners and that Jesus is our guilt offering. When we do that, Jesus saves us from our sin. You can do that right now, where you are seated. Confess to God that you deserve punishment, but that you believe Jesus died for your sins. The Bible says that all who call upon Jesus will be saved.
God is pleased that Jesus is the Savior of the world. Jesus does what nobody else may do, He saves the nations. He doesn’t do it with an army, a government, or any other worldly way. Jesus saves the nations by laying down His life as a guilt offering.
God glorifies Jesus by giving Him many offspring, prolonging His days, and by giving Jesus all the treasures of heaven and earth.
Jesus is God’s Satisfied Servant
In this next verse, God speaks to us. He tells us of Jesus work on the cross.
As a result of the anguish of His soul,
He will see it and be satisfied;
By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities. (Isaiah 53:11)
Jesus goes to great lengths as God’s Servant.
Jesus dies an excruciating death on the fateful Friday. All of Jerusalem gathers to mock and torment Him as He is put to death. He suffers great physical pain from the scourging, beatings, and slow painful crucifixion.
The greatest pain is not physical pain. Isaiah prophecies that Jesus will suffer the anguish of His soul. His body will be wracked with pain, and His soul is stabbed with a knife that penetrates to the depth of His spirit. Jesus cries out, “ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?” which is, “MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?”
For the only time in all of eternity, Jesus soaks in the pain of being forsaken by God. The unity in the Trinity is broken as God turns His face away from His Son. Jesus suffers great anguish of His soul for our behalf.
Jesus endures suffering because He is looking forward to the joy of having complete satisfaction of a successful mission. Jesus is victorious in accomplishing the most difficult task in the universe. Jesus bears the iniquities of many.
The satisfaction Jesus has comes from pleasing His Father. Jesus has great joy in serving God. He tells His disciples that obeying the Father is His food. He told them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work” (John 4:34).
One by one, the sins of many are laid upon Christ, and each person is made whole. Each person is justified. To be justified is to be declared innocent. Just as if I never sinned. Just as if I always obeyed. Jesus justifies the many by bearing their iniquities.
Jesus is greatly satisfied to present the children of God to the Father as holy, blameless, and above reproach. Jesus stands beside us in the great throne room of God, and we stand beside Him as though we have never sinned. Ever.
God’s Righteous Servant makes us righteous.
Jesus is our justification
God finds pleasure in the blood sacrifice of Jesus. God is completely pleased in the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross because it is a sufficient sacrifice to save people from their sin.
Jesus is pleased that He is victorious in accomplishing the task of saving God’s people. Jesus finds satisfaction in taking the punishment for sin.
God is pleased. Jesus is satisfied. What about us? We also ought to be satisfied. Because Jesus is our justification, we need to be satisfied with the justification Jesus offers.
If you are here today, and you have not put your faith in Jesus as the sacrifice for your sins, you are making a fool’s error. Dare you think you do not need to be saved? If God sending His Son to die on the cross as a penalty for sin does not convince you of the seriousness of sin, you are not thinking deeply enough. Our sin is a rebellious act that deserves the wrath of God. Every person needs the salvation that Jesus offers.
We have a choice, we can confess our sin to God and beg for Jesus to be our sacrifice, or we make a choice to suffer the wrath of God.
Jesus is pleased to offer complete justification. Those who receive Jesus’ gift are declared innocent before God’s judgment seat. Do not reject the justification Jesus offers.
If you have received Jesus gift of salvation, be satisfied. God is pleased. God looks upon Jesus’ blood sacrifice on the cross, and God says, “I find pleasure in Jesus’ guilt offering.”
Jesus looks back at His guilt offering, and He also is satisfied that the job is finished. Jesus said on the cross, “It is finished.”
If God and Jesus think that Jesus’ sacrifice is enough to have us stand before the throne of God, why do we ever think we are not good enough? Jesus sacrifice is for all of our sins. The sin of yesterday, today, and tomorrow are nailed to the cross.
We can not add to the pleasure of God. Jesus’ sacrifice is sufficient to make us pleasing in the eyes of God.
Dare we think that the justification Jesus offers is not enough to save us to the uttermost? Dare we think that Jesus saves us half way and we have to complete the work? Dare we think we can add to the salvation of Jesus to make us better in the eyes of God?
We allow ourselves to think that we are not good enough Christians. There are only Christians and non-Christians. Either we put our faith in Jesus for the forgiveness of sins, or we don’t. There is no middle ground. We are fully saved and washed completely free of sin or we are not saved at all.
Be satisfied in the justification Jesus offers because God and Jesus are satisfied!
Jesus is God’s Heir
Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
And He will divide the booty with the strong;
Because He poured out Himself to death,
And was numbered with the transgressors;
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,
And interceded for the transgressors. (Isaiah 53:12)
God says that He will allot Jesus a great inheritance. The New Testament writers recognize Jesus as the King of kings, and the Lord of lords. All things are put under the feet of Jesus. Jesus inherits everything. There is not one molecule in this creation or one spiritual molecule in the spiritual realm that does not belong to Jesus.
God gives Him everything. We learn why in this verse. We are given four reasons that God rewards Jesus.
First, it is because Jesus pours Himself out to death. Jesus is willing to obey God to the point of shedding His blood and dying. What is most important to Jesus is to obey God.
Second, Jesus is numbered with the transgressors. In other words, all people are sinners, and Jesus steps off His throne in heaven to become a man. He is willing to dwell among sinners. Jesus is a friend of sinners. He is even willing to be accused of being a sinner.
Third, Jesus bore the sins of many. He doesn’t take on Himself every sin, but only the sin of those who put their faith in Him. Jesus takes the sin upon Himself and makes Himself a guilt offering.
And fourth, Jesus interceded for those who are transgressors. Jesus steps in and takes the punishment. He intercedes by intervening. He stands between the wrath of God and transgressors and absorbs God’s wrath.
It is because of His willingness to come to earth from His throne in Heaven that God rewards Jesus with all things. And, what Jesus does is He shares all things with the strong. The strong are those who make it through the battle. In this case, the strong are those who put their faith in Jesus sacrifice. They survive the battle and are made strong because Jesus makes the strong.
Jesus is our Treasure
Jesus does far more than provide for us our justification so that we may stand before the throne of God as innocent.
Jesus fulfills our every need perfectly. We need to be satisfied in the riches of Jesus who freely gives us all things.
Think about eternal life in heaven that the Bible promises we receive when we receive Jesus as our Savior. In God’s kingdom, sits a perfect King and His name is Jesus. Jesus is perfect in every way. In Jesus’ kingdom, there is perfect justice. Sin is completely wiped away. Imagine every citizen in heaven sharing with each another. Imagine how creation is restored so crops are abundant and the water is fresh and pure.
Imagine the joy of knowing there are no enemies. Jesus defeats all who seek to do us harm. We are rid of anything or anyone who seeks to ruin us. Children play without fear. There is no war or strife. There are no locked doors or windows.
Imagine living in complete and perfect health. There is no sorrow or pain. There are no boxes of tissues in heaven. There are no doctors. There is no death.
Most of all, imagine knowing God intimately. We walk with Him in the garden. Imagine God loving us, caring for us, providing for our every need.
Imagine the joy of seeing Jesus face-to-face. He is our treasure! Everyone desires to be loved. We are created as beings needing love. We will see the nail prints in His hands and feet. We will look into His eyes, and we will know, Jesus loves us. We will feel loved as we have never been loved before.
The world’s most famous verse sums up what God desires for us to know.
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
Are you prepared to stand before the judgment seat of God? As you stand there, will you be justified by the blood of Christ, or will you stand before God as a guilty sinner? Receive Jesus and you will not perish, but have everlasting life.