The Long-Suffering Servant Kicks Major Ass
Suffer the Servant (Isaiah 52:13-53:12) is a song on the music album Sick Twisted Loving Jesus by 6 Sucks Sex. The prophetic and poetic prose of Isaiah 53 tells the story of an innocent man who, in obedience to God, is born and gets rejected by those he suffers and is killed for, sacrificed vicariously for his people, even the world. The theme of substitutionary atonement for sin is returned to repeatedly in this passage. In the end, this man is himself justified and elevated by God. Numerous ancient rabbis were of the opinion this passage is about the Messiah.
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Many people who read this are struck by the parallels between the Suffering Servant of Isaiah and Jesus Christ as depicted in the New Testament. Reading it, you may be reminded of Jesus, by a text written at least 500 years before he lived on Earth. When I first read it, studying the Bible on my own, I was stunned, and wondered why no Christian had shown it to me before. The Messianic prophecies fulfilled in Jesus are one of the things that brought me to my knees.
If you research it online, you will find it’s the subject of considerable interest and debate. The amazing book Messiah in Both Testaments by Fred Meldau (PDF) documents a few hundre Messianic prophecies fulfilled in Jesus, and deals with this passage on pp. 43-52, including claims that it could possibly refer to the nation of Israel.
The song is the middle movement of a three-song song that begins with Iz 52 and ends with Rebel Soul, on the album Sick Twisted Loving Jesus by 6 Sucks Sex. The music is more on the beautiful, mellow, groovy side than much of the other material.
The vocal track is the result of a few takes and some editing. I like vocalizing certain Bible passages to music – it comes out right in the most amusing, awful, humbling and expressive ways at times. Then it’s done, and you and I can hear the Word of God given verbal life with cool music. We can play it on repeat, listen with others and discuss.
The Suffering and Glory of the Servant – Isaiah 52:13-53:12, WEB
13 Behold, my servant will deal wisely.
He will be exalted and lifted up,
and will be very high.
14 Just as many were astonished at you
(His appearance was marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men),
15 So will many nations marvel at him.
And kings will shut their mouths at him:
for they will see what they were not told;
and they will understand what they had not heard.
1 Who has believed our message?
To whom has the arm of Yahweh been revealed?
2 For he grew up before him as a tender plant,
and as a root out of dry ground.
He has no handsomeness or majesty.
When we see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He was despised, and rejected by men;
a man of suffering,
and familiar with pain.
He was despised as one from whom men hide their faces;
and we did not respect him.
4 Surely he has borne our sickness,
and carried our suffering;
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions.
He was crushed for our iniquities.
The punishment that brought our peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
6 All of us like sheep have gone astray.
Everyone has turned to their own way;
and Yahweh has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed and afflicted
but did not open his mouth.
As a lamb that is led to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
And as for his generation, who protested?
Yet who considered that he was cut off from out of the land of the living and stricken for the disobedience of my people?
9 They made his grave with the wicked,
and with a rich man in his death;
although he had done no violence,
and in his mouth there was no deceit.
10 Yet it pleased Yahweh to crush him.
He has caused him to suffer.
When you make his soul an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring.
He will prolong his days, and Yahweh’s pleasure will prosper in his hand.
11 After the suffering of his soul,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied.
My righteous servant will justify many by the knowledge of himself;
and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion with the great,
and he will divide the plunder with the strong; because he poured out his soul to death,
and was numbered with the transgressors;
yet he bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.