Many years ago, when I was a young greenhorn in the Scriptures, I read the following section of Isaiah and had a remarkable experience. It was 1980 and I had a really bad case of the flu. It was suggested that I read Isaiah, chapters 52 through 55. Although I really felt terrible, not at all like sitting up and reading (all I really wanted to do was sleep), I lay down on the daybed in my sitting room, covered up, and began to read. Once I started, I couldn’t stop and what I read began to stir something in my heart, so much so that I began to cry. I closed my eyes, not understanding why I was crying. What happened next astounded me. As I lay there, I saw a vividly graphic mental image of the tortured face of Jesus. It is an image I distinctly remember to this day. At that point, my tears turned to sobs; eventually I sobbed myself to sleep. I awoke hours later, my pillow drenched in tears, my clothing saturated with sweat. The fever was gone; no headache, no body aches, no chills, nothing at all. Every trace of the symptoms were totally gone. I was completely healed! I didn’t understand it at the time, and I still don’t entirely understand it. Something happened when, in my tears, I came into an agreement and identification with the sufferings of Christ, and with that identification was healed by the power of the Word of God. He truly did send His Word and heal us and deliver us from our destructions.

Let’s explore a bit what was actually wrought for us in Jesus’ suffering and death. Jesus was our substitute for sin and the consequences of sin, sickness and disease. Here are a few excerpts from Isaiah.

“As many were astonied (appalled, stunned, stupefied, made desolate, horrified), at thee; his visage was so marred (disfigured of face) more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men”:

Isaiah 52:14 King James Version

Here is the same verse in the NIV. “Just as there were many who were appalled at him — his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any human being and his form marred beyond human likeness –“

“He is despised (held in contempt, deemed to be vile, and worthless), and rejected (forsaken, made destitute) of men, a man of sorrows (pain, physical and mental, anguish), and acquainted with grief (sickness, malady, calamity): we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not (held him in low esteem).”

“Surely he hath borne (carried, endured) our griefs (sickness and diseases), and carried (bore our load, allowed himself to carry our burden), our sorrows (our physical and mental pain and anguish): yet we did esteem (considered, reckoned, judged) him stricken (chastised, wounded, beaten ravaged, slain), smitten (judged, punished, and destroyed) of God, and afflicted (oppressed, downcast, humiliated). But he was wounded (polluted, defiled, profaned) for our transgressions, he was bruised (crushed, broken, beaten to pieces) for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes (stripe) we are healed.”

Isaiah 53: 4 & 5, King James Version

Here is my own literal according to usage, an expanded version of these verses based on studies of translations/definitions of the Hebrew words in these verses.

“As many were appalled, stunned, stupefied, made desolate and horrified at thee, his visage, his appearance, the sight of him was so marred, his face so disfigured, more than any man has ever seen before or since and his form more than the sons of man, that he no longer resembled a human being.”

“He is despised, held in contempt, deemed to be vile and worthless, and rejected, forsaken, and made to be destitute of men; he became a man of sorrows, of physical and mental pain and anguish. He is acquainted — knows by experience — grief, sickness, malady, and calamity. The sight of him was so hideous it caused people to hide their faces from beholding him. He is despised, contemptible, vile and worthless, and we esteemed him not, we held him in low esteem.”

“Surely, truly, certainly, verily he hath borne, carried and endured our griefs, our sicknesses and diseases, and allowed himself to carry our burden, our sorrows, our physical and mental pain and anguish: yet we did esteem, consider, reckon and judge him stricken, chastised, wounded, beaten, ravaged and slain, smitten … judged, punished, and destroyed of God, afflicted, oppressed, downcast, and humiliated.”

“But he was wounded, polluted, profaned, and defiled for our transgressions. He was bruised, crushed, broken, beaten to pieces for our iniquities. The chastisement, the discipline and rebuke, for our peace, our completeness, soundness, health, prosperity, the restoration of our relationship with God, was put upon him and with his stripe, we are healed.”

Why did he do this? Why did he allow this? Jesus always did the will of his Father. Even as he prayed in the garden on the night he was taken for this cup to be taken away, he said, …”nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matthew 26:39). God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son to be payment in full for our sin (1 John 4:10). Our sin was paid for by the shedding of his blood (Romans 3:25). Our sickness and disease, our physical wholeness, in every category, was paid for, in full, by his broken body. He became THE passover lamb, once for all, who was sacrificed for us (1 Corinthians 5:7b). We were bought with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20a). The price was the only begotten son of God! Now, because in dying for us, the veil of separation that kept us from God was torn from top to bottom. We have access to the throne of grace. We can look into the face of God Almighty and say, “Abba Father”.

How much do we understand of what Jesus actually accomplished for us as he underwent the hours and hours of torture that eventually led to the most painful and excruciating death possible? During those hours he suffered every kind of physical injury imaginable. Not only did he suffer physical pain and anguish; he also suffered mentally. He became the lowest of the low. He is a man who underwent the vilest and most viscous brutality the enemy could muster so he could save to the uttermost those who would reach out, take his hand and confess, “Lord I believe”! The more we commune with our Lord, developing a deep and intimate relationship with him, the more clearly we will step into our salvation … our wholeness in every category of life. Then we can take it to a people who need to hear and experience it too. See and understand what our Lord did for us when he allowed his blood to be shed and his body to be broken. His blood paid in full for the sins of man. His tortured, mutilated body paid in full for our sickness and disease. When he freely laid down his own life, he gave us access to forgiveness and healing. How real is it? How vivid is it? Can we see it? When we do, we will truly be able to proclaim, “By his stripes, I am healed!” Then we take that message to a world that is dying to hear and experience the same.

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