Man Of Sorrows (part three)
“All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way…” (Isaiah 53:6). Truly, everybody has sinned (Romans 5:12). Yet the sin is made more grievous in light of Christ’s sacrifice, for how can one continue sinning knowing what has been done for him? How can one go on living for the flesh when the spirit has been given freedom and salvation? Like sheep, we wander and get lost!
“He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth. By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, for the transgression of my people to whom the stroke was due?” (53:7-8). Why did Jesus not open His mouth as He was being killed? Why did He simply accept it when He was condemned to death and beaten before His accusers? The wording here is very similar to the thoughts of Jeremiah in Jeremiah 11:19, “But I was like a gentle lamb led to the slaughter…”
What is so amazing about Jesus is His complete self-control. At a time when most of us would have wept and begged for our lives, or at least for a quick and merciful death, Jesus kept His mouth shut and His soul focused on the goal of His ministry – to die. It was for that purpose that He came to this world, so it makes perfect sense that He would have Himself so spiritually prepared for the event. For specific fulfillments of this prophecy, consider some of the times that Jesus chose not to answer His accusers. In Matthew 26:61-63, some false witnesses came forward with testimony about Jesus, yet He did not respond to inquiries made by the high priest. In John 19:1-13, Jesus was unwilling to respond to one of Pilate’s questions. Furthermore, before King Herod, Jesus refused to perform miracles or even speak to the rotten king in Luke 23:8-12.
His End, His Vindication
“His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death…” (53:9). This is a prophecy concerning the manner in which Jesus’ body would be disposed of. From the Gospels, it is clear that our Lord was assigned a place with criminals – He died alongside two robbers who were also being crucified, and would have likely been buried with them in unmarked graves in some despised place.
Because Joseph intervened on behalf of the body, though, Jesus was actually buried in a tomb reserved for wealthy individuals (Matthew 27:57-60). In a most literal sense, this prophecy was fulfilled exactly.