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FRAMEWORKS: Isaiah 52: Coming Redemption & Third Servant Song


Part One: v.1-12: Prepare for your Redemption

Part Two: v.13-15: Start of the Third Servant Song


[Preliminary notes: The first part calls Jerusalem to get ready to rise up and rule [v.1,2], for although you have had a shaky past [v.3-5] there is a day coming when God will be on the move and good news will be brought [v.6-8] and great rejoicing will ensue as God's power is revealed [v.9,10] so it's a time to get ready – but no rush – as God gets ready to move [v.11,12].

The second part [v.13-15] of the start of the third servant song that presents us with a confusion of information – he will be exalted, he will be marred and abused, yet he will impact the nations of the world. We are left wondering how this can be.]



Part One: v.1-12: Prepare for your Redemption


v.1 Jerusalem see yourself in holy splendour

v.1  Awake, awake, Zion,
    clothe yourself with strength!
Put on your garments of splendour,
    Jerusalem, the holy city.
The uncircumcised and defiled
    will not enter you again.

v.2 Cast off the shackles of yesterday, stand up and rule

v.2  Shake off your dust;
    rise up, sit enthroned, Jerusalem.
Free yourself from the chains on your neck,
    Daughter Zion, now a captive.


v.3 God says you will be redeemed without having to pay a thing

v.3  For this is what the Lord says:

‘You were sold for nothing,
    and without money you will be redeemed.'


v.4 A shaky past in Egypt, later oppressed by Assyria….

v.4  For this is what the Sovereign Lord says:

‘At first my people went down to Egypt to live;
    lately, Assyria has oppressed them.


v.5 …and now a picture of slaves taken away

v.5  ‘And now what do I have here?' declares the Lord.

‘For my people have been taken away for nothing,
    and those who rule them mock,'
declares the Lord.
‘And all day long
    my name is constantly blasphemed.

v.6 But the day is coming that God foretold

v.6  Therefore my people will know my name;
    therefore in that day they will know
that it is I who foretold it.
    Yes, it is I.'


v.7 So the messenger bringing this news will be wonderful to see

v.7  How beautiful on the mountains
    are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
    who bring good tidings,
    who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion,
    ‘Your God reigns!'

v.8 So look you watchers for God will be coming to Jerusalem again

v.8  Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices;
    together they shout for joy.
When the Lord returns to Zion,
    they will see it with their own eyes.

v.9 Then you will be able to rejoice at what God has done

v.9  Burst into songs of joy together,
    you ruins of Jerusalem,
for the Lord has comforted his people,
    he has redeemed Jerusalem.

v.10 He will show His might and the world will see it

v.10  The Lord will lay bare his holy arm
    in the sight of all the nations,
and all the ends of the earth will see
    the salvation of our God.


v.11 So your servants, sanctify yourselves in preparation

v.11  Depart, depart, go out from there!
    Touch no unclean thing!
Come out from it and be pure,
    you who carry the articles of the Lord's house.

v.12 You don't need to rush, this is God's doing, He will be with you

v.12  But you will not leave in haste
    or go in flight;
for the Lord will go before you,
    the God of Israel will be your rear guard.



Part Two: v.13-15: Start of the Third Servant Song


v.13 The Servant (again) will be exalted

v.13  See, my servant will act wisely;
    he will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted.

v.14 Although he will be scarred and mutilated

v.14  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 –

v.15 Nevertheless he will impact the world

v.15  so he will sprinkle many nations,
    and kings will shut their mouths because of him.
For what they were not told, they will see,
    and what they have not heard, they will understand.


Continue to Chapter 53