Bearing Our Sickness

Isaiah 53:4a, speaks of the Messiah as: bearing our griefs. The english word griefs, was translate from the Hebrew word, haliy; disease, or sickness.

Isaiah 53:4a Surely He has borne our griefs…

New Testament Fulfillment:

Luke 6:17-19 And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases, as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.

Healed

The reason that we become sick and die is because of the presence of sin. Without sin, these terrible plagues would not happen to us. Because Jesus came to take away our sins and make us perfect once again, we will live forever and never become sick again. In this way, Jesus death also healed us of every sickness.

Whether or not Jesus death was intended to heal us, is widely debated amongst Bible commentators. You will find that opinions are about half against the Messiah bearing our sickness, and half for the Messiah atoning for our sickness. Since all sickness is unnatural and caused as a direct result of sin, it is reasonable to assume that by the Messiah’s atonement on the cross, He was also removing our sickness.

A part of Jesus’ ministry was to heal everyone who asked Him. Both physical and spiritual healing by the Messiah was widely predicted in the Old Testament.

Isaiah 53:5 … And by His stripes we are healed.

Psalms 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.

Isaiah 35:5-6 Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, And the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then the lame shall leap like a deer, And the tongue of the dumb sing.

Isaiah 42:16 I will bring the blind by a way they did not know.

These things being said, we also know that not everyone is healed when they pray and ask the Lord. At least, not in the earthly sense that we would like to see; that our loved ones might be with us a little while longer. In the most important sense; everyone who loves and trusts in Jesus; when they become sick and die, they are healed in heaven, forever. In heaven no one is sick, and all those who were sick and have died on the earth, cease from their suffering, the moment that they enter the presence of the Lord.

It is wrong to tell a person that the reason they were not healed is because they did not have enough faith. This is simply not true. Lots of people, have lots of faith, and they still die. From the vantage point of the Lord, the day of our death is better than the day of our birth. The Lord is so eager to meet us upon our death, to Him, this day is precious.

…the day of death is better than the day of one’s birth… Ecclesiastes 7:1

Precious in the sight of the LORD Is the death of His saints. Psalms 116:15

We have an allotted number of years here on the earth and when it is time for us to depart, nothing can stop it. My late wife was hospitalized and near death on seven or eight occasions; suffering with Lupus. Each time, I prayed; she recovered and came home. In 2006, she was hospitalized once again and I prayed fervently. She died after just one day and went home to heaven. There was nothing that I could do—except thank the Lord for all the beautiful moments that we had together, and the fact that she would never again suffer. My heart was broken and it took more than five years before I finally felt whole again. I never blamed the Lord or questioned why He didn’t heal her the last time, when He had, so many times before. These matters belong to the Lord and I trust Him.

The greatest sickness that we all suffer from is sin. Jesus has already made this curse a thing of the past. One day we will all depart this earth and find ourselves in an eternity of our own making. Those who acknowledge their need for a Savior and recognized that only Jesus is qualified to save us; will find a glorious and perfect existence. Those who would not obey God’s command to turn to Jesus and be saved, will receive what they wanted; eternal life, without God.

We might think that God’s hatred of sin is directed at depriving us of the fun things that we want to do. In reality, the choices we often make, deprive us of the abundant and satisfying life that God had planned.

A practical example of how sin deprives us of the life that God intended, is in the area of our greatest intimacy.

Fornication and Adultery deprive us of a profound intimacy that can only be experienced in the depth of a loving marriage relationship with one person, over the course of an entire lifetime. Those who give themselves to a lifetime of sexual escapades, in the end, have souls that are empty and unfulfilled. These individuals become bitter at life and often angry at those who used them for their own personal pleasure. The most joyous and fulfilling experience that a man or woman can find in their life is when they are deeply faithful, through marriage, to one person to whom they can give their entire self.

Jesus bore in His body, the griefs that you and I experience throughout our life. We have all made serious errors in our decisions. Often these errors in our judgment leave us with a sense of hopelessness. Jesus came to take these many failures—into His Being and be punished for our sins. As a result, those who place themselves in-Jesus as Lord and Savior, have their many mistakes removed from their record as if they never existed.

If you are still living with guilt from all of the terrible things that you have said and done in your life, you do not have to abide with this plague any longer. The promise made in this prophecy from Isaiah 53:4, is: the Messiah will bear all of our griefs in the sacrifice that He will make for us. Since Jesus has already died for all of our sins and He was raised to life on the third day, we have the assurance that when we surrender all our sins and failures to Him; He will take them all away and remove the guilt and suffering that we experience, as a result of committing them.

Can any of us imagine how horrible it was for Jesus to encompass Himself in the sins of every person, for all time?

If it was not for the fact that Jesus is the eternal God with a life of infinite worth, coupled with His sinlessness as a man, it would not have been possible for Him to bear the sins of all people. Because Jesus’ life is of infinite value, it has sufficient worth to redeem every person who has lived on the earth. He was able to offer His life in exchange for ours and pay the high price required for our redemption. God accepted Jesus’ sacrifice as the full payment for our sins, and in doing so, God justly punished Jesus for our sins. Since Jesus has been punished for our transgressions, we no longer are required to suffer the judgement and punishment for those sins, ourselves. How wonderful it is, what God has done for us.

Psalms 103:8-14 The LORD is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. 9 He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. 10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities. 11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; 12 As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. 13 As a father pities his children, So the LORD pities those who fear Him. 14 For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.

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There is one extraordinary piece of evidence that resides inside the heart of every human being that allows them to know that God exists; our conscience. Very often, when a software designer creates a program, they install a “backdoor” as a secret way of bypassing normal authentication in a product, computer system, crypto-system or algorithm. In a sense, the designer leaves evidence of himself in what he has created. In the same way, the Bible describes an identifiable piece of evidence that has been placed inside us that allows our mind to know that God exists.

God has put eternity in their hearts… Ecclesiastes 3:11

what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. Romans 1:19

Either this is true or it is not. If this fact about God is not true then we cannot trust all the other things that God has said. Those who claim that there is no evidence for God, have surpassed this internal knowledge in order to allow themselves to live their lives without God. Previously we looked at Romans 1:19, notice the verse that comes before:

…men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, Romans 1:18

A person has the capacity to suppress their conscience and not allow it to govern their life. Those who continually ignore their conscience, sear it—much in the same way that a hot ember from a fire; if repeatedly, touches a part of our hand, it will suppress our feeling in that hand.

…having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, 1 Timothy 4:2

Those who maintain that God does not exist, and who continue to suppress their conscience in regards to guilt over sin and the fact that God does exist, become immune to the effects of both. Once a person reaches this point, it is nearly impossible for them to believe and be saved.

God has given us a conscience to bear witness to our heart; that sin is wrong and we need a way to free ourselves from the guilt that we feel. This “software,” that God placed into our heart is the method, by which, He is able to speak to us and draw us to Himself, so that we might be saved. The Holy Spirit is the agent which uses this “back door” to convict us of sin and our need to be saved. Once a person has removed access to this software that God has installed into us, the Holy Spirit can no longer reach us and it is impossible to be saved.

…I will send the Holy Spirit to you and when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: John 16:8 (RCR)

In this second part of the chapter, Isaiah writes that the Messiah will carry our sorrows. The prophet is describing the sadness that overtakes human life because of our sins that we carry with us. Make no mistake, sin is a heavy burden to carry. I know about this because I carried a heavy load myself. The day that I understood that Jesus could lift all my sins from me and take away the guilt that I felt for them, I became a free man.

The purpose of the Messiah’s sacrifice was to carry the sorrow for our sins.

Isaiah 53:4b Surely He has …carried our sorrows….

New Testament Fulfillment:

1 Peter 2:24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree…

A Cleansed Conscience

There is a sorrow that we can experience as human beings, that is implacable. The emptiness that we feel in our hearts, which drives us to fill a void that is overwhelming, comes largely from our conscience and innermost sorrow for our sins.

Many of those who have yet to come into an awareness of God in their life, believe that by the pursuit of pleasure, wealth, experiences, or knowledge; a person can find satisfaction. In reality, the pursuit of these aspirations is much more satisfying than the actual acquisition of them. Once we attain some of these pursuits, we find that the objects of our affection remain unable to satisfy the longing of our heart. Some people spend their entire life chasing their dreams, only to discover after they have attained them, they are still unfulfilled.

We were created by God to know Him, worship Him, and have a deep and personal relationship with Him.

When we live our lives in the pursuit of God, our entire dynamic of life changes. We find purpose, great pleasure, deep fulfillment, and lasting peace. I have often listened to and read the comments of those who espouse their certainty that God does not exist. It is easy to sense that despite their outward claims of self-satisfaction, by their words, in their eyes, and on their faces, the emptiness of their soul is apparent. Many times it seems to me that these skeptics are trying to convince themselves, as much as persuade others; that God is not real and that they have no need of Him. Something deep inside the scoffer, tells them that God is real, yet they will not concede nor surrender.

The honest person knows that something is missing in their life which can never be satisfied by anything material. We are keenly aware that we were not meant to be temporal beings with a finite period of time to live. There is a sense within us that we must go on forever. Death feels as unnatural to a human being as trying to breathe air underwater.

The Bible describes God as creating us for eternity, and He has placed a knowledge of Himself within us.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts…

Romans 1:20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse…

The universe is evidence that God exists

With all of the wonders of science and astronomy today, no person can tell us how the universe came into being from nothing. Many theories are conjectured and put forth regarding the existence of the “multiverse,” while no evidence for any other universes actually exists. Since we cannot see beyond our present cosmological structure, it is impossible to state categorically that many others certainly exist. The entire purpose for introducing the multiverse theory was to camouflage the obvious truth that our universe exists by design. Until scientists are able to prove by scientific methods that there are trillions of other universes, in addition to our own, we must—as intelligent men and women, deny this mystical materialistic answer for our existence.

The theory of Occam’s Razor defines the simplest and most obvious answer as the often correct conclusion.[1] No person views a one-hundred and four story skyscraper and questions how it came into existence. It is understood that a mind conceived this building. Engineers designed its structure. Builders assembled the components that were required to erect this great edifice. Anyone who would state that the Freedom Tower in New York City came into existence on its own, would be ignored or laughed to scorn. The obvious conclusion is that someone made it.

Of infinitely greater complexity, is the universe itself. Today, intelligent men and women find themselves backed into a corner that does not permit the admission that design is a clear attribute of the cosmos. To stipulate design is to admit a Designer. The scientific word is not ready to accept God as the source of anything, at the present time. Although thousands of scientists are moving into the arena of faith in a Transcendent Creator as the source for all that exists, it is doubtful that the world of science as a whole, will ever make this admission. The costs are far too high. The entire composition of authority, power, and wealth, reside upon those who preserve the atheistic posit of science.

The reader must understand that the facts of science lead to only one conclusion: the universe exists as a model of design. There were no haphazard and chaotic conditions in the early formation of the cosmos. Specific and detailed procedures were followed to exact a specific outcome that would ensure life on earth.

Theoretical Physicists, Stephen Hawking described the impossibility of a universe existing at all, as a supernatural event apart from a naturalistic cause.

“The odds against a universe like ours emerging out of something like the Big Bang are enormous. I think there are clearly religious implications.” [2]

Dr. Arno Penzias, Ph.D. in Astrophysics, Nobel Prize winner in Physics in 1978, and co-discoverer of the moment of creation by Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation, made a stunning discovery in 1964 with Dr. Robert Wilson. Their work led to the startling announcement that the universe had a beginning, commonly described today as “The Big Bang.” Prior to this, scientists had stated that the universe is eternal, and therefore does not require a Creator.[3]

Dr. Penzias is a Christian, a believer in the Bible as the word of God, and vigorous defender of creation as the method by which the universe exists.

Dr. Penzias had this to say regarding the existence of the universe:

“If there are a bunch of fruit trees, one can say that whoever created these fruit trees wanted some apples. In other words, by looking at the order in the world, we can infer purpose and from purpose we begin to get some knowledge of the Creator, the Planner of all this. This is, then, how I look at God. I look at God through the works of God’s hands and from those works imply intentions. From these intentions, I receive an impression of the Almighty.”[4]

The problem of faith in God for most of those who deny His existence is not a lack of evidence; it is because of an unwillingness to admit His existence. If God exists then how we live, matters. What we do in our life may have consequences that will affect us after we die. A larger barrier for many astute men and women of science is the reality of what would happen to their careers or standing in the scientific community if they were to suddenly admit the obvious; the universe appears designed, which implies a designer, which means that God must exist.

The Pharisees were unwilling to admit that Jesus met the criteria for the Messiah because they feared the loss of their coveted positions in the leadership of Israel. Could we imagine what would happen if Professor Richard Dawkins suddenly announced that he believed that God existed, and the cause of the universe? The millions of dollars each year that flow into his bank account. The notoriety, the fame and recognition that he has attained, would all be gone. This is a price that is far to high to pay for someone who has spent their entire adult life refuting the existence of God.

God is hidden from the wise

An often unnoticed phenomenon that exists in human life is the fact that God cannot be known by intelligence alone. He has hidden himself from the wise and the analytical, by design. This comes as a great shock to many as it would be assumed that God would want to make Himself known. The truth is, there is no place in the Bible where God seeks to prove His existence. He knows, that all of us know, that He exists. He has made Himself known to us by the things that He has created, so that we are without excuse.

Romans 1:20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse…

God has revealed Himself in three ways: By the things He has made, by His word, the Bible, and by His Son; Jesus Christ.

Scientists cannot discover God by studying the Cosmos and searching for a natural cause. All that can be achieved by diligent study of science and cosmology is an awareness that everything in the universe displays evidence of design. In order to know the designer, one must study His word and specifically, the prophecies of the Bible which reveal His Son, the Messiah, Jesus Christ. By the time that you finish this book, having examined the larger part of the Prophetic portion of God’s word which reveals who the Messiah is and what His purpose was in coming to earth; you will have an excellent working knowledge of who God is.

God reveals Himself only to the humble, the teachable, and the diligent. He does not make Himself known to those who do not have a desire to know Him. This is why the person who sets themselves up to not believe that God exists cannot understand Him, no matter how great the evidence is that is presented to him.

It has also been my experience that a large majority of those who claim to not believe in God—due to insufficient evidence, are really refusing to believe simply because they do not want to. When conversing with these individuals and presenting compelling evidence, very often I am told that I have “proven nothing.” In fact, what is proven by the presentation of compelling and reasonable evidence to believe, is that those who have a preponderance towards not believing, will not change their minds, regardless of the evidence. This reality unveils the true source of unbelief is not due to a lack of evidence, but a lack of will. When a person does not want to believe something, they will not change their stance—regardless of what is presented to them. People do not change until their heart changes. The real issues of life are most often centered around the inner person, where decisions are made, based upon feelings, not facts. If all of our decisions in life were based solely upon facts, we would all make much better decisions. Because we decide what is right for ourselves, based upon how we feel, or what we want, our decisions are most often incorrect.

The evidence presented in this book is sufficient for any reasonable person to make a decision for God, or at least open their mind to the possibility of God. When I first began my own search, it wasn’t one book or lecture that convinced me to believe; it was the cumulative effects of a continued search, over several years, which ultimately led me to accept that God must exist.

In the end, it is not really the evidence that convinces most people of God’s existence; it is the character and nature of Jesus which disarms our will and opens our heart. When we are confronted with the certainty of who Jesus of Nazareth is, what He has said and what He has done; we are compelled to make a decision. It is the person of Jesus which causes us to stand in amazement. There has never been another man in the history of the world like Him. The wisdom that He displayed in His words, the singularity of His actions, and the incomprehensible love and grace which He showed to every person He met, sets Him apart from all other men.

This man who is so rigorously recorded in the pages of history as one unique and extraordinary in His words and deeds, is in fact, the Messiah; the Savior of the world. As Isaiah predicted in this prophecy, He came to bear all of our sorrows by taking all our sins upon Himself and put them away forever.

We find the purpose for our life and a wonderful new hope for our eternal existence, when we come to Jesus humbly, and surrender our life to Him. This is the purpose for which these prophecies were written, and it is my great honor to share them with you.


[1] William of Ockham (c. 1287–1347) was an English Franciscan friar and theologian, an influential medieval philosopher and a nominalist. His popular fame as a great logician rests chiefly on the maxim attributed to him and known as Ockham’s razor. The term razor refers to distinguishing between two hypotheses either by “shaving away” unnecessary assumptions or cutting apart two similar conclusions (from wikipedia).
[2] 1. Collins, Francis S. (2006-07-17). The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief (p. 75). Free Press. Kindle Edition.
2. I. G. Barbour, When Science Meets Religion (New York: HarperCollins, 2000).
[3] Penzias, A.A.; Wilson, R.W. (1965). “A Measurement of Excess Antenna Temperature at 4080 Mc/s”. Astrophysical Journal 142: 419–421. Bibcode:1965ApJ…142..419P. doi:10.1086/148307
[4] Penzias, as cited in ‘The God I Believe in’, Joshua O. Haberman – editor, New York, Maxwell Macmillan International, 1994, 184