Scripture: Isaiah 59:15-21/63:1-6
I. Jesus the King is coming again to judge.
A. The world is a mess. Isaiah 59:14 makes it clear that truth, justice and righteousness are lacking. How does God feel about all this? Vs. 15: “The LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice.” God is not just displeased by injustice. He is angry. Look at Isaiah 63:3-4. Our God is a warrior, and Isaiah 59 and 63 say that God gets dressed for a fight. He puts on righteousness as a breastplate of a soldier (Isaiah 59:17). God wears a soldier’s helmet of salvation (59:17). He will fight against sin and evil wherever He finds it, and He will and He must defeat it. God puts on His soldier clothes, and He acts to protect His people.
B. Isaiah 61:1: “The Spirit of the LORD GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news.” Who is this Anointed One, this Messiah? Jesus (see Luke 4). He will bring the judgment of Isaiah 63. It’s Jesus’ clothes that will be stained red with blood (Isaiah 63:3). Jesus is the Mighty God (warrior) prophesied in Isaiah 9:6: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” And Jesus is the one who will come to judge sin and evil. Revelation 19:15: “From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.”
II. Jesus the King is coming again to save.
A. Judgment and salvation are two sides of the same coin. It is only Jesus who can save you. Isaiah 63:5: “I looked, but there was no one to help; I was appalled, but there was no one to uphold; so my own arm brought me salvation, and my wrath upheld me.” Why can Jesus alone judge and save? Because Jesus alone is the only human who is perfectly righteous. Righteousness is Jesus’ superpower. Isaiah refers to the righteousness of God and Jesus in Isaiah 59:16-17 and 63:1. It is Jesus’ righteousness that is mighty to save us (Isaiah 63:1).
B. It is only when Jesus totally destroys all that is evil that we as God’s people can finally be safe – that we can be saved for all eternity in an everlasting Kingdom of righteousness. How do I know if I am saved? Isaiah 59: 20: “‘And a Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,’ declares the LORD.” Do you trust that Jesus’ death on the cross has redeemed you – has He set you free from slavery to sin? And have you turned away from a lifestyle of sin in repentance? If so, you are saved.
Turn away from sin and be saved. The judgment of God is a terrible thing to endure.
The book of Isaiah
Commentaries by J.A. Motyer, Tim Chester, Bob Fyall, David Jackman and Derek Thomas.
Sermon Discussion Questions
1) Who is the conqueror of Isaiah 63? What is the work that He does? How should we respond to the terrible judgment He will bring?
2) Why does the work of judgment need to be done if God’s people are going to be saved? Do God’s judgment and salvation happen at different times or at the same time?
3) What does God promise to those who are saved in Isaiah 59:21? Why are these promises such blessings? Is it possible for us to save ourselves? Who alone does the saving and judging?