Sunday School Material 1-30-11: Healed by His Bruises

(Isaiah 53:4-6, 10-12; 1/30/11)

Introduction: A key idea in today's Sunday School material is the suffering Servant paid for our blessings. Prayerfully, we will be challenged to live like we appreciate what the suffering Servant has done for us.

Read Isaiah 53:4-5
I. Suffering Servant.
The text talks about how "He" suffered in the stead of God's people. "He" bore our griefs, carried our sorrows, was wounded for us, and more. "He," for Christians, is a reference to Jesus Christ, the suffering Servant.

Applications –
- Jesus’ substituting for us.
Notice in vs. 4 of our Sunday School material how the suffering Servant provided a ministry of substitution. He bore the grief and sorrows that we should have bore. He was wounded, bruised, and chastised for us. Two things ought to come to mind, based on Jesus’ finished work.

First, we should never be arrogant. All that we have is because of the substitution of Jesus.

Second, we should be more than thankful. When we think we don’t have anything to be thankful for, we should remind ourselves how much worst our lives would be, if it were not for Jesus substitution. Let’s remember Jesus’ substitution with humility and joy.

- Healed by His stripes. Notice in vs. 5 of our Sunday School material that by the suffering Servant’s stripes, we are healed. Some have taken this to mean that Christians will never be sick. However, this is not the teaching of the Bible. As we look at the Old and New Testaments, God’s people have suffered sickness and died.

The healing is much more spiritual than anything else. On one hand, we should do what we can to take care of the bodies that God allows us to have. But on the other hand, we should be aware that all of us have a date with death (i.e., if the Lord delays His coming).

Many of us will die from sickness, no matter how hard we work on our discipleship. But thank God, we have another body that never gets sick – in eternity. Let’s take care of our bodies but with more hope in our glorified bodies than in these which are perishing.

Read Isaiah 53:6
II. Straying Sheep.
The text talks about how we – the people of God (i.e., Jews in our text, Christians in our application) - have gone astray. Whereas, we should have been punished for our straying, our iniquities were laid on the suffering Servant. Our straying had to do with turning to our own ways, instead of following the ways of our Shepherd.

Applications –
- Being like sheep.
Notice in vs. 6 of our Sunday School material that the people of God are compared to sheep. Positively, the shepherd, Jesus, in the case of believers, takes care of His sheep. In fact, our good Shepherd has laid down His life for us.

Negatively, sheep can be so easily destroyed by wolves, because sheep like to wander. Let’s work on staying close to our Shepherd, by staying obedient to His word.

Proverbs 14:12 reminds us that there is a way that seems right to us, but the ends there of are the ways of death. In other words, the Shepherd has much more sense than the sheep.

Read Isaiah 53:10-12
III. Substitutionary Sacrifice.
The servant is pictured as pleasing the Lord with His substitutionary suffering. Many will be justified – declared righteous - by the Servant's suffering. The Servant is viewed as being great and strong by the Lord.

Applications –
- God’s pleasure with the Servant’s suffering.
Notice in vs. 10 of our Sunday School material that it pleased the Lord God to punish the suffering Servant. The Lord’s pleasure was inspired by the larger agenda of salvation. God was not pleased to see His Son on the cross.

But He was pleased to see the price being paid, so that whosoever believes on Jesus’ substitutionary death shall not perish but have everlasting life. It’s like surgery. We are not as pleased with surgery, as we are pleased with the results of surgery.

Let’s live like we appreciate the great sacrifice that has been made for us. This appreciation should be known for enthusiastic worship, faithful service, and living by godly principles, in every area of our lives.

- Justification. Notice in vs. 11 of our Sunday School material the idea of justification. To be justified is to be declared righteous, even though one may not be actually righteous. In our case, we don’t live right enough to be declared righteous; however, Jesus’ sacrifice is so powerful that we are declared righteous.

Knowing that we are justified should lead to humility and our ongoing attempt to live up to God’s expectations of us. At the core of God’s expectations are for us to make sure that we have accepted Jesus as our savior by faith and to love God and others as we love ourselves. Let’s live like justified believers.

- Trustworthy scriptures. Notice in vs. 12 of our Sunday School material that the scriptures are trustworthy. Just as the prophecies about Jesus came true, all that God has promised will come true. God promises blessings for obedience and punishment for disobedience.

Let’s live like we believe that the scriptures are trustworthy. Such living should be known for obedience, peace, and joy.

We can have peace in knowing that no matter what we see, everything is going to be alright, if we simply trust God. And we can have joy in knowing that all things are working for the good of those who love the Lord.

Conclusion: Based on our Sunday School material, let's live like we appreciate what the suffering Servant has done for us. God has much for those who obey His will.

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