Our daughter burst into tears as we waved goodbye to my parents. After visiting us in England, they were starting their long journey back to their home in the US. “I don’t want them to go,” she said. As I comforted her, my husband remarked, “I’m afraid that’s the price of love.”
We might feel the pain of being separated from loved ones, but Jesus felt the ultimate separation when He paid the price of love on the cross. He, who was both human and God, fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy 700 years after Isaiah gave it when He “bore the sin of many” (Isa. 53:12). In this chapter we see rich pointers to Jesus being the suffering Servant, such as when He was “pierced for our transgressions” (v. 5), which happened when He was nailed to the cross and when one of the soldiers pierced His side (John 19:34), and that “by his wounds we are healed” (Isa. 53:5).
Because of love, Jesus came to earth and was born a baby. Because of love, He received the abuse of the teachers of the law, the crowds, and the soldiers. Because of love, He suffered and died to be the perfect sacrifice, standing in our place before the Father. We live because of love.
Lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God who takes away our sins, have mercy on us, and help us to extend mercy and love to others. Show us how we might share Your love with others today.
Jesus was the perfect sacrifice who died to give us life.
Can you think of a time when you thought you would have been willing to do anything for love? Or, by contrast, have you known what it is like to avoid love—for fear of being hurt?
Living eight centuries before Christ, the prophet Isaiah had the hard job of letting the people of Jerusalem know that God loved them too much to let them continue to turn their backs on Him without consequence. Before confronting the idolatries of Ephraim, Assyria, and Egypt, Isaiah described the citizens of Jerusalem and Judea as dearly loved children who had rebelled against their Father (1:2–3). In chapter five it is evident that God cares too much about His people to let them continue embracing the false gods and futile hopes of other nations (vv. 1–7).
Woven through Isaiah’s warnings, however, are promises that the painful judgments of God have a merciful purpose. Beyond the consequences, Isaiah sees a future of restoration not just for Jerusalem but also for the whole world (2:1–5). Yet, until the day of Jesus’s resurrection, the means by which God would carry out that rescue was a secret of His love.