THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR
(Why We Celebrate Christmas)
#1 Someone Wonderful Is Coming! 11.28.21
Isaiah 53:1-12 NASB Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? 2For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of dry ground; He has no stately form or majesty that we would look at Him, Nor an appearance that we would take pleasure in Him. 3 He was despised and abandoned by men, a man of great pain and familiar with sickness; and like one from whom people hide their faces, He was despised, and we had no regard for Him. 4 However, it was our sicknesses that He Himself bore, and our pains that He carried; Yet we ourselves assumed that He had been afflicted, struck down by God, and humiliated. 5 But He was pierced for our offenses, He was crushed for our wrongdoings; the punishment for our well-being was laid upon Him,and by His wounds we are healed. 6 All of us, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the Lord has caused the wrongdoing of us all to fall on Him. 7 He was oppressed and 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. 8 By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off from the land of the living for the wrongdoing of my people, to whom the blow was due? 9 And His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth. 10 But the Lord desired to crush Him, causing Him grief; if He renders 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.11 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, for He will bear their wrongdoings. 12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,and He will divide the plunder with the strong, because He poured out His life unto death, and was counted with wrongdoers; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, and interceded for the wrongdoers.
1. Martin Luther: “This chapter should have been written on a parchment of pure gold, studded and lettered with diamonds.”
2. Written seven hundred years before the birth of Christ
I. Jesus is unique among all mankind.
A. Something weak in the eyes of the world
B. Something watched over and protected by God
C. A truly supernatural event
D. Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 9:6
E. Never minimize the virgin birth, for this provides framework for His sinlessness.
F. Fully God; Fully man
G. This is fundamental, not incidental.
H. The only begotten
I. He was not half man and half God; He was not all man and no God; He was not all God and no man. As much God as He was man: Couldn’t have been more God if he wasn’t man; couldn’t have been more man if he weren’t God.
J. Gregor Mendel: “Everything in your mother and father is in you.”
K. Adrian Rogers and Muhammed Ali: “You said Jesus was God because He was born of a virgin. ADAM HAD NEITHER FATHER NOR MOTHER, SO WOULDN’T THAT MAKE HIM MORE GOD THAN JESUS?” The answer - “Jesus wasn’t God because He was born of a virgin. He was born of a virgin because He was God.”
II. Jesus presented Himself in humility.
A. Despised and rejected
B. A man of sorrows, acquainted with grief
C. A product of Nazareth
D. Probably didn’t stand out in a crowd. Judas had to point Him out.
E. Reception not based on miracles or appearance. His miracles were not publicity stunts. He often commanded that they be kept secret. The Scripture points out that they SHOULD have responded to the miracles, but (1) many did not, and (2) many stopped following. God designed Christianity this way because He wants us to respond with faith. Faith is our response to the character of God. Jesus laid aside the splendor, but not the character.
F. The simple life of Jesus is one of the great fulfillments of prophecy.
III. Jesus came to die in my place.
A. They thought He was wounded because He was bad. But it turns out He was wounded because we were bad.
B. Isaiah 53:6 NASB - All of us, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; But the Lord has caused the wrongdoing of us all to fall on Him.
C. Jesus took upon Himself four things:
1. My sins (wounded/pierced). In the spiritual cup of suffering He had to drink it. A child is molested, a woman raped, that sin comes into that cup. He dreaded the cross. But endured it for us. He bore the full wrath of God.
2. My shame. The words of Caiaphas and Pilate. Man without wedding garment was speechless. If he tried to defend Himself, He could have died in dignity, but He took my shames and died in it.
3. My separation. He was cut off. Separated from God. Quoting perhaps Psalm 22. He was infinite, we are finite. Jesus wasn’t looking back quoting David. David was looking ahead quoting Jesus.
4. My suffering. Yet it pleased The Lord to bruise Him. Many others were crucified - but the Hand of the Father was crushing Him. Even in Hell, the lost cannot understand the suffering of Jesus. He being infinite, paid in a finite period of time what we being finite cannot pay in an infinite period of time. Now understand, eternity is not simply more, so this is far more than quantity, it is quality. It is another dimension. Sin isn’t just dismissed; it must be paid for.
IV. Jesus came to bear all my grief.
V. Jesus came to fully establish the Kingdom of Heaven
A. He is in control.
B. He is working in more ways than you can imagine.
C. He is coming again.