|The Third Servant Song: Isaiah 50:4-10
Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God." Isaiah 50:10 (To read this entire Servant Song see Addendum A).
The Third Servant Song opens with the special anointing on Gods Servant to speak. He knows how and when to speak. The LORD personally teaches Him, and He has the tongue of the learned. The Second Song described the Servants mouth as a sharp sword. However, the Third Song shows He knows how and when to speak as one that is learned. Once again, the reason for His ability to speak with such effect goes back to Isaiah 11 and the anointing of Spirit of the Lord. Let us look at these Scriptures:
Isaiah 50:4 The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
Isaiah 11:2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD
The Third Song now begins to develop further the concept of King Messiahs rejection. The prophet writes that Gods Servant was not rebellious and did not turn away from God. The next verse describes a tremendous beating and suffering this Servant endured. The question immediately comes to mind, if Gods Righteous Servant was not rebellious, why was he beaten in such a horrible way?
Isaiah shows King Messiah suffers both horrible physical and emotional torture. His back was beaten and His beard was plucked off His face! He was spat upon and viewed as the subject of shame. The reason for such awful treatment is not given. Remember, He is Gods Righteous Servant! This treatment was administered to a righteous person:
Isaiah 50:5 The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. (6) I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.
The Prophet Micah also describes King Messiah being beaten and abused. Micah refers to Gods Righteous Servant as the Judge of Israel. The prophet first identifies Gods Servant as the Judge of all the earth ruling and reigning during the Messianic Kingdom. The context is that King Messiah has returned and is Judge over the nations, and He has ended war. This verse follows:
Micah 4:3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
After Micah establishes King Messiah as the Judge of Israel and all the nations, the prophet then shows that Gods Righteous Servant was beaten! Once more the reader confronts confusion: How can the Judge of all the earth suffer a beating? Micah describes the beating like that found in the Third Servant Song:
Micah 5:1 Now gather thyself in troops, O daughter of troops: he hath laid siege against us: they shall smite the judge of
with a rod upon the cheek.
Isaiah 50:5 I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.
The comparison of these two verses show that Gods Righteous Servant suffers a horrible beating of His face and body. His face is both beaten with a rod along with His beard plucked off. Then His face was spat upon! The rest of His body was also subject to this beating. The Fourth Song explains the reason for such treatment.
The New Testaments confirms that this is the exact treatment that the Lord Jesus suffered before He died on the cross. His face was horribly beaten and He was subject to shame and humiliation:
Matthew 27:30 And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head.
Luke 22:64 And when they had blindfolded him, they struck him on the face, and asked him, saying, Prophesy, who is it that smote thee? (65) And many other things blasphemously spake they against him.
After describing the beating, the Prophet Isaiah then returns to describe the character and attitude of Gods Righteous Servant. He is gentle and yet determined. He is gentle, as He trusts the God of Israel for help. He is determined to do Gods will despite such torture, and He sets His face like a flint to do it!
He looks not to man but only to God for approval. He challenges those against Him to come forward. He is not hiding from His enemies. He completely trusts God in this situation. This is such a beautiful Song showing the gentle and faithful nature of Gods Righteous Servant. This is the attitude of the Lord Jesus as is shown in the New Testament. These verses follow:
Isaiah 50:7-9 For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed. (8) He is near that justifieth me; who will contend with me? let us stand together: who is mine adversary? let him come near to me. (9) Behold, the Lord GOD will help me; who is he that shall condemn me? lo, they all shall wax old as a garment; the moth shall eat them up
Hebrews 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared.
Matthew 26:39 And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
The Third Song ends with an admonition for those that will fear the LORD and listen to the words of His Servant. The people are described as walking in darkness and having no light. This is a description of national
, Gods blinded servant, as stated in Isaiah 42:18. The remedy for this blindness is to obey the words of Gods Righteous Servant and trust in the name of holy God of Israel:
Isaiah 50:10 Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God.
The First and Second Servant Songs along with Isaiah 11 reveal that the Branch of David is made a covenant to the people. The Fourth Servant Song describes this covenant, providing great detail into how and why it was established. Remember, this covenant justifies sinful man with the holy God of Israel, so it is of the utmost importance the Fourth Servant Song is understood.
Let us now look at the Fourth Servant Song. This Song solves the discrepancy of how Gods Righteous Servant could suffer such an awful beating and yet be King Messiah over the entire world.
By John McTernan:
Proclaim the Faith
Blog: John McTernan's Insights at www.johnmcternan.name