Isaiah 42 ✒️ Righteousness

May 4, 2024 • Dr. Dave Burnette

1Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.

 2He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street.

 3A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth.

 4He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.

 5Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein:

 6I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles;

 7To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.

 8I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.

 9Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them.

 10Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the isles, and the inhabitants thereof.

 11Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit: let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains.

 12Let them give glory unto the LORD, and declare his praise in the islands.

 13The LORD shall go forth as a mighty man, he shall stir up jealousy like a man of war: he shall cry, yea, roar; he shall prevail against his enemies.

 14I have long time holden my peace; I have been still, and refrained myself: now will I cry like a travailing woman; I will destroy and devour at once.

 15I will make waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their herbs; and I will make the rivers islands, and I will dry up the pools.

 16And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.

 17They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods.

 18Hear, ye deaf; and look, ye blind, that ye may see.

 19Who is blind, but my servant? or deaf, as my messenger that I sent? who is blind as he that is perfect, and blind as the LORD's servant?

 20Seeing many things, but thou observest not; opening the ears, but he heareth not.

 21The LORD is well pleased for his righteousness' sake; he will magnify the law, and make it honourable.

 22But this is a people robbed and spoiled; they are all of them snared in holes, and they are hid in prison houses: they are for a prey, and none delivereth; for a spoil, and none saith, Restore.

 23Who among you will give ear to this? who will hearken and hear for the time to come?

 24Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to the robbers? did not the LORD, he against whom we have sinned? for they would not walk in his ways, neither were they obedient unto his law.

 25Therefore he hath poured upon him the fury of his anger, and the strength of battle: and it hath set him on fire round about, yet he knew not; and it burned him, yet he laid it not to heart.

COMMENTARY by Dr. Dave Burnette

Written By: God through Inspiration

Penned By: Isaiah

Date Penned: (700-681 BC)

Overview: To Tell of God's Salvation through the Messiah (c 1-66)

Theme: Words of Comfort (c 40-66)

Message: God's Chosen One (v 1-25)

Isaiah 42 Commentary 

(42:1) The Servant-Messiah - Sometimes called the Servant Song, these verses are about the Servant-Messiah, not the servant Cyrus (described in Isaiah 41). Israel and the Messiah are both often described with the word servant. Israel, as God's servant, was to help bring to the world the knowledge of God. The Messiah, Jesus, would fulfill this task and show God himself to the world. 

(42:1-4) Jesus - These verses are quoted in Matthew 12:18-21 with reference to Jesus. The elect, or chosen, servant reveals a character of gentleness, encouragement, justice, and truth. When you feel broken and bruised or burned out in your spiritual life, God won't step on you or toss you aside as useless but instead will gently pick you up. God's loving attributes are desperately needed in the world today. Through God's Spirit, we can show sensitivity to people around us, reflecting his goodness and honesty to them. 

(42:6-7) A Light to All Nations - Part of Christ's mission on earth was to demonstrate God's righteousness and to be a light to all nations. Through Christ, all people have the opportunity to share in his mission. God calls us to be servants of his Son, demonstrating God's righteousness and bringing his light. A right relationship with God leads to right love that produces right actions. What a rare privilege we have to join with the Messiah to fulfill his mission! But we must seek his righteousness (Matthew 6:33) before we demonstrate it to others and let his light shine in us before we can be lights ourselves (Matthew 5:16; 2 Corinthians 4:6). When John the Baptist's disciples came to Jesus to ask if he was the Messiah, Jesus quoted this passage as part of his answer to them (Matthew 11:4-6). 

(42:8) A Holy God - The name of the Lord must be kept sacred because he is absolutely holy. When God called Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, he told Moses that his name is Yahweh, which could be translated "I AM THAT I AM" or "I WILL BE WHAT I WILL BE" (Exodus 3:14-16). The Bible uses many different names or titles for God. Each name tells us more about his power and divine nature and reveals the kind of relationship he wants to have with his people. If you want to understand the full scope of the relationship God wants to have with you, study all the names Scripture uses for him. 

(42:10) A Reason to Praise the Lord - Look at all that the Lord will do for us and through us (42:6-9)! Seeing this should cause us to sing out loud. Majestic works prompt majestic responses. Do you really appreciate the good that God does for you and through you? If so, let your praise to him reflect how you really feel. 

(42:19-20) Failing to See - How could Israel and Judah be God's servants and yet be so blind? How could the people dedicate themselves to following God and yet see so little of who he really is? Jesus condemned the religious leaders of his day for the same kind of spiritual blindness (John 9:39-41). And do we not fail in the same way? We show spiritual blindness when we close our hearts to God's Word and the leading of his Spirit, and we let darkness rule when we close our eyes to the needs of others. 

(42:23) A Reflection to Ourselves - We may condemn our predecessors for their failures, but we are twice as guilty if we repeat the same mistakes. Paul gave a warning similar to this one in 1 Corinthians 10:1- 1. We may be so ready to give God's message to others that we overlook what it reveals in our own lives. Make sure you follow your own advice as you teach or lead.

LIFE APPLICATION by Dr. Dave Burnette

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today, we continue in the Book of Isaiah with Chapter 42. In our text today, we see a lesson about the righteousness of God. In His righteousness, we see forgiveness of sin and how He restores us and then empowers us to demonstrate it to others. In making an application, we see how we are called to be witnesses of His Righteousness after we are saved. How about you? Have you experienced His righteousness? Let us learn from our text today and this lesson in righteousness to see that we must be saved to receive His righteousness. Once we are saved, we are to witness the righteousness in us, Christ-Jesus. 

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