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God Saves

Scripture: Isaiah 52:13–53:12

Acts 8:34-35: ‘About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?’ Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture  he told him the good news about Jesus.”

I. God saves through Jesus.

A. Jesus confirms that He is the prophesied servant of God who would bring God’s salvation in Luke 22:37: “For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me: ‘And he was numbered with the transgressors.’ For what is written about me has its fulfillment.” Jesus quotes here from Isaiah 53:12. Jesus, the Servant of God, would be considered a criminal – a criminal who should be pierced on a cross (vs. 5).

II. God saves through an eternal plan with Jesus.

A. The apostle Peter talks about God’s plan when he preached to the people of Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2:23: “This Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men.” God’s eternal plan was to lay on Jesus the iniquity of us all (vs. 6). Just like the high priest would lay his hands on a scapegoat on the Day of Atonement as a symbol of laying all Israel’s sins on the goat and then sending the goat off into the wilderness so God planned to lay all our sins on a scapegoat.   

III. God saves through the substitution of Jesus.

A. The guiltless Jesus (vs. 9) would substitute Himself for us. Notice all the back and forth between he and we in vs. 4-6. Jesus was not punished for His sins but for ours. Every time in vs. 4-6 the crime is ours, and every time the suffering is His. He substitutes Himself for us to save us and give us His righteousness.  2 Corinthians 5:21: “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” The whole Bible teaches us that our salvation turns on an amazing act of substitution.

IV. God saves through the victory of Jesus.

A. The cross was not the end of Jesus’ story. After his death Jesus would be high and lifted up and exalted (Isa. 52:13). Jesus would be resurrected from the dead and that resurrection would be a sign that God has vindicated Jesus. God gives many people to Jesus as a reward (vs. 12). Jesus’ reward then for His victory is us.

Jesus needs to be your substitute to save you. Tell others to make Jesus their substitute also.

The book of Isaiah
Commentaries by J.A. Motyer, Tim Chester, Bob Fyall, David Jackman & Derek Thomas

Sermon Discussion Questions:

1) Based on what you read in Isaiah 53, do you take sin seriously enough? Do you know the forgiveness and healing that can be yours in Christ?

2) What do we learn about Jesus’ identity in that he was elevated to the same place (Isa. 52:13) as God the Father (Isa. 6:1)? 

3) How does verse 5 teach us what happened to the Servant, why it happened, and what happens to us as a result?