I've always been amazed and confused by this verse. I think it's one of the most radical phrases in all of Scripture. “But the Lord was pleased to crush Him, putting Him to grief." (Isaiah 53:10, NASB)
I think we've grown so accustomed to biblical language that verses like these can become traditional, but if you use your imagination, this verse should really challenge your thinking: how could it be that God the Father would ever find pleasure in the crushing and the grief of his Son?
If you’re a parent, think of the protective heart you have for your children. You don’t want any harm to come to them, and you try to protect them from danger and difficulty. You can’t imagine them being crushed or grieved, and you certainly couldn't imagine personally inflicting that pain on them while finding pleasure in it.
This verse is meant to make you stop short and ask the question: what could be so powerfully motivating in the heart of the Father to enable him to crush his Son and find pleasure in his grief? The answer is found in John 3:16 - “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
God looked at this broken world, he saw your broken heart, he saw the separation between himself and mankind, and he was motivated by reconciliatory love. The only solution was to crush his Son, the perfect sacrifice.
God's love for you sent Christ to earth to be born in a manger. God's love for you drove Jesus to the Cross to die a brutal and horrific death. God's love for you rolled away the stone from the empty tomb. And God's love for you continues to provide today.
During Christmas, I think many of us are reminded of the eternal love God has for us. But what about his love today? This is where I love the words of the Apostle Paul - "He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?"(Romans 8:32, ESV)
Here’s the logic: if God sent Christ to earth on Christmas to be crushed for our eternal salvation, it makes no sense for God to turn his back on us during our present time of need. In other words, the guarantee of our eternal future also guarantees everything we need right here, right now.
We have other evidence of this promise, too: “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life" (2 Peter 1:3, NIV) and “My God will supply every need of yours” (Philippians 4:19, ESV).
God knows what you need, and he will provide everything for you today and tomorrow and every day until you meet him face to face. God's love not only applies to your past sin and your future eternity; God's love meets you where you are, right here, right now.
Paul David Tripp
- What brings you pleasure?
- Do the same things that bring you pleasure bring pleasure to God?
- When and how have you doubted the love and provision of God?
- How has God proven to love and provide for you in the past?
- How can you encourage others with the love of God this Christmas?