What this world consider wise, is not wise. What this world views as foolish, hides the wisdom of the ages. God does not reveal Himself to the proud, the self sufficient, and the self righteous. The One who made the universe comes to the humble, the seeking, the sincere. The reason that man cannot find God: his foolish pride.
When God sends His Messiah into the world, He will originate from a family of men who are insignificant to the world. God looks at the heart and examines the thoughts and intentions of a man. When He uses a person to make Himself known, He choses the weak, the untrained, the unnoticed. In this manner, no one would ever think that this person could accomplish anything by their own wisdom or power. When great things are accomplished by the weak and insignificant–everyone understands that what was accomplished, was done by God and not by men. In this way, all praise, honor, and glory, are given to God–who is the only one who rightfully deserves our praise.
In the beautiful, poetic language of Isaiah, we see the prophecy of the coming Messiah–who will originate from one of the descendants of Jesse.
Isaiah 11:1a There shall come forth a Branch from the stem of Jesse…
Jesse was seen as a Stem from where a Branch could grow out from. A stem is often the smallest part of a plant or tree. Most people do not take much notice when a plant begins to grow a tiny stem; they notice the flowers or leaves. God’s wisdom is far outside the wisdom of this present world. The things that men view as common, insignificant, worthless, or weak, God uses to confound those who see themselves as wise.
1 Corinthians 1:27-29 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence.
God took a simple man like Jesse with many sons and used the youngest among them. He did not choose the oldest, the most handsome, or the greatest in skill or power. He chose a humble shepherd whom no one else noticed.
In Jesse and his youngest son David, God sets a pattern into motion whereby He forever showed us that anyone can come to God and not only be accepted by Him but also be greatly used. The criteria for God to use a person is first and foremost, a humble heart; second, availability; third, complete submission to do His will.
As Jesus emerges onto the world scene, He comes in the exact pattern of David: Humble and simple beginnings. Insignificant to the world, but highly loved and honored by God. Jesus humbly submitted Himself to the will of the Father and made God’s Glory His only goal. It was Jesus’ enduring desire to do the will of God and please the Father in everything which allowed Him the ability to complete the incredible work of salvation for those who would receive Him and rely on the Cross as their only method of redemption.
John 17:4 I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.
In this prophecy of the Messiah originating from the Stem of Jesse, we see that God was displaying for us in advance, that his ways are not our ways. His thoughts are not our thoughts. His men and women are not as the world’s men and women. The humble, the available, the submissive… Any person can be used by God to accomplish incredible things, while finding great joy and fulfillment—simply by making the completion of the Father’s will their delight.
1 Corinthians 1:20-25 Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
Jesus’ pattern for service is an example for all of us to follow. He did not lead by force, or by compulsion, threat, or intimidation. Jesus led by example. He got up and did the hard work of meeting the deepest needs of human beings. He was gentle, humble, merciful, and kind to every person who came to Him in sincerity. To those who, by religious pretense, led others away from God, He scolded, condemned and judged their actions as worthy of eternal fire.
The Stem and Rod of Jesse is Jesus Christ, the true and only Messiah who has come into the world. We know this is true and understand it to be certain by the examination of His life, His words, and His actions. Everything that Jesus said and did was in direct conformity with all that the prophets spoke concerning the Messiah.