(Book: I Don’t Have Enough FAITH to Be an ATHEIST, by Geisler and Turek, chapter 13.)
Last week, Geisler and Turek started to tell us about the amazing messianic “prophecies” in the last several chapters of Isaiah, using Larry Helyer’s list of 14 detailed predictions plus an observation of their own. As we ran through the list of details, however, we noticed something odd: either the “predictions” were vague enough to apply to almost anyone, or else the messianic “fulfillment” consisted of believers simply attributing things to Jesus without there being any way for anyone to verify if they were really true.
Starting with item 12, though, things get a little more evangelical-sounding.
12. The Servant accepts vicarious and substitutionary suffering on behalf of his people (53:4-6, 12).
13. He is put to death after being condemned (53:7-9).
14. Incredibly, he comes back to life and is exalted above all rulers (53:10-12; 52:13-15).
In addition to Helyer’s observation, we note that the servant is also sinless (53:9).
A snippet here, a snippet there, and you can almost make the verses in Isaiah sound like a Gospel. But is that really what Isaiah intended? Who was Isaiah’s “Suffering Servant” anyway?