An Unbelievable Message
by Mary Alice McGinnis
Have you ever considered what makes Christianity different? There are so many religions out there, so many ways humans have tried to understand, and come close to God. Maybe it is through using reason, or intellect, or following a set of rules or practices.
What is our inclination in searching, for a person to rescue us, deliver us, or protect us? What kind of person do we choose to follow? What kinds of things do we look for in those whom we seek to lead us? What characteristics do we desire in a hero? Close your eyes and try to picture what a perfect hero might look like in your mind.
Are they powerful? Powerful enough to really help us?
Are they prosperous? What have they achieved?
Are they attractive? Or charismatic? What draws us to them?
Are they influential? How can they use their influence to help us?
Are they admired? Or honored? What do others say about them? Do they have other people’s stamp of approval?
What comforts of life have they obtained? What makes us say, "I want that type of life too?"
With whom do they choose to surround themselves? Do they select the best of the best to come alongside them?
How do they determine who they will help?
Isaiah turns our idea of the perfect hero on its head. Through the revealing of the Holy Spirit, Isaiah wrote these words: “Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
Isaiah wrote these words hundreds of years before their fulfilment in the life, death, and resurrection of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. He says that the Almighty arm of the Lord of All, the King of the Universe, will be revealed, and that message will be so counter-intuitive it will be unbelievable. The Messiah, foretold by Isaiah and fulfilled in Jesus, is completely the opposite of what we as humans expect AND what we deserve. Consider these thoughts.
Jesus came into our world tender and vulnerable: “He grew up before Him like a tender shoot...”
He was not prosperous by worldly standards —“like a root out of dry ground.”
He did not use outward appearances or charisma to draw others to Him —“He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to Him, nothing in His appearance that we should desire Him.”
Instead of human influence, Jesus —“was despised and rejected by mankind…”
The Messiah, Jesus did not seek a comfortable life, but was —“a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.”
He was not admired or honored by people, but instead —“Like one from whom people hide their faces, He was despised, and we held Him in low esteem.”
Whom did Jesus surround Himself with but those who are deserving of punishment and the wounded —“But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed.”
He does not offer His help to those who deserve it —“Surely, He took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered Him punished by God, stricken by Him, and afflicted.”
Instead, He offered His life, for those of us who have turned our backs on Him, those who have gone astray —“We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”
No human mind would ever conceive of such a rescue plan.
Use the lyrics of this song as your prayer today.
Run to the Father, by Cody Carnes
You saw my condition
Had a plan from the start
Your Son for redemption
The price for my heart
I don't have a context
For that kind of love
I don't understand
I can't comprehend
All I know is I need You!