The Servant will be equipped with divine speech as he goes through the school of suffering.
Isaiah is writing to the Jews from the northern kingdom who are already in exile and the Jews in the southern kingdom who are about to go into exile. But he is writing as if the exile has already happened. The exiles would be tempted to despair and start believing that either God is either unwilling or unable to keep His promises.
Their rebellion and discouragement is contrasted with the obedience and faithfulness of the Servant.
|People of Judah||Servant|
|doesn’t listen to God’s call (50:2)||a constant listener (40:4)|
|skeptical that God loves them (49:14)||confident of the Lord’s help (50:7-9)|
|doubts God’s power (49:22)||confident of the Lord’s nearness (50:7-9)|
|suffers for their sins and rebellion (50:1)||suffers because obedience (50:5ff)|
|charged with offenses (50:1)||no charge against him will stand (50:8-9)|
|is spoken of as many/plural||is spoken of in singular|
Note: I am using a metaphor of a school to outline this passage.
The Goal & Requirements of the “School” (50:4-6)
- The goal of the school is to learn to speak effectively and graciously.
- The teacher of the school is the LORD.
- “Morning by morning” is a metaphor for the first thing you do each day, i.e. your first priority.
- “The tongue filled with appropriate word for ministry is the product of the ear filled with the word of God.” – Alec Motyer, page 399.
- The entrance requirement of the school is listening.
- The curriculum of the school is being willing to face rejection.
Graduating from the school (Isaiah 50:7-9)
- The Servant is confident the LORD is his help and he is the LORD’s servant. Thus he can face humiliation.
- The LORD vindicates and judges.
- Like a moth slowly destroys a garment in an almost invisible process, the LORD’s judgment is absolutely sure.
Exhortations to students (Isaiah 50:10-11)
- A disciple is one who fears the LORD AND obeys the Servant.
- Those “who walk in darkness and have no light” are those who recognize they are sinful. If they should trust in the name of the Lord, they will receive mercy.
- Those “who kindle a fire” are those who believe themselves to be righteous and self-sufficient. They will receive judgment.