Read: Isaiah 50:4-10
The Sovereign Lord has opened my ears;
I have not been rebellious, I have not turned away.
I offered my back to those who beat me,
my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard;
I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting.
Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced.
His Victory, My Victory
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Could anything be more awful? Could anyone be more angry, mean, or full of hatred? Jesus, our loving Savior, was beaten and bruised and bloodied by his enemies. They made fun of him. They spit on him. They nailed him to a cross! How terrible! How sad! How awful!
The words that we hear from Isaiah today are a prophecy. That means these words predict the future. They are very special words about the future. These are words of Jesus himself describing how he would suffer and die about 700 years before it actually happened.
Yet even worse than the pain of being beaten and hated, Jesus also suffered the pain of the sin and guilt of all people. He took all of your sins and all of my sins onto his own shoulders at the cross. He died to pay for what you have done and what I have done.
But the wonderful news of God’s love and grace is that there is a happy ending to the story. Jesus crushed Satan at the cross and forgave us all those sins. Jesus then rose from the dead in victory, and because he lives, we will live with him in heaven. Isaiah foretold this too when he said, “Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced.”
In the first devotion this week, Jesus reminded us that sometimes we still struggle in our lives. We have many temptations and sins to fight against. Sometimes there will be people who don’t like us, just like they didn’t like Jesus. It may feel like we are alone as we suffer in this world.
But not to worry, Christian friends! Jesus is on our side. The one who suffered, died, and rose in victory is now with us. Jesus is with us in everything that we do in life. When we struggle, he gives us strength. When we suffer, he gives us peace. When we sin, he gives us forgiveness. And when we die, he will give us heaven.
The beautiful truth of today is that the words of Jesus that Isaiah spoke are now our words. We can say that “The Sovereign Lord helps me.” We can say that “his victory is my victory.”
Lord Jesus, you know my pain and my hurt because you suffered too. Give me strength to get through this life until I enjoy the victory you have prepared for me in the next life. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- Describe something painful that Jesus suffered.
- What was the worst suffering and pain that Jesus experienced? Why?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- How was it possible that Isaiah was able to predict the future about Jesus?
- How do we know for sure that Jesus won the victory of sin, death, and hell?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- Agree/Disagree: Jesus rising from the dead is the greatest miracle of all time. Explain your answer.
- “His victory is my victory.” Explain why that little phrase about Jesus is something that can change your life.
Hymn: CW 465:1-2 – Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken
Jesus, I my cross have taken, All to leave and follow you.
Destitute, despised, forsaken, You on earth once suffered, too.
Perish ev’ry fond ambition, All I’ve ever hoped or known;
Yet how rich is my condition! God and heav’n are still my own.
Let the world despise and leave me; They have left my Savior, too.
Human hearts and looks deceive me; You are not, like them, untrue.
And since you have smiled upon me, God of wisdom, love, and might,
Foes may hate and friends may shun me—Show your face, and all is bright.