Reading Time: 5 Minutes
Key words in Isaiah 53, such as iniquity and transgression, originate in the heart or the inside condition of a person. Rudy Ross talks about this in detail in today’s YouTube video on the Bob Spradling channel.
This blog article explores the role of our inside condition or heart in Biblical language. It describes what God has done to transform our inner self through Jesus Christ.
Key Words in Isaiah 53
The prophecy of Isaiah is that the Suffering Servant came to make a significant difference in the inside condition of humans.
But he was wounded for our transgressions,
crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the punishment that made us whole,
and by his bruises we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have all turned to our own way,
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53.4-5)
Every act is created twice. It is first thought before it becomes an action.
The Psalm writer depicts the source of evil as a person’s musing about mischief while reclining in bed.
They plot mischief while on their beds;
they are set on a way that is not good;
they do not reject evil. (Psalm 36.4)
Jesus taught that the inside thoughts, feelings, and purposes of a person are the first location of evil. He said, “It is what comes out of a person that defiles.
“For it is from within, from the human heart, the evil intentions come: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly” (Mark 7.20-22).
Jesus chided the religious leaders of his day with these words, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.
“You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup, so that the outside also may become clean” (Matthew 23.25-26).
It is such a serious concern if the outside looks good, but our inside is corrupt that Jesus experienced the horror of the cross to change our inside condition.
Why is the Inside So Important?
Why is our inside condition so valuable that God would allow his precious Son to suffer and die to change us?
I had an “aha” moment with Rudy while producing the videos on Isaiah 53. He pointed out how the one place where God meets with humans is in the human heart. If iniquity and transgression reside in our inside condition, our intimacy with God will be hindered.
God has made clear his intentions toward us. He wants undivided love.
God wants us to obey his command to love. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6.5).
God deeply desires to live with us in a love relationship. This is the greatest gift a human can receive. Mere good behavior does not reach the pinnacle of an intimate relationship with our Creator.
The religious leaders of Jesus’ day were very observant of outward righteousness. However, Jesus knew what their inside condition was like.
“You hypocrites! Isaiah prophesied rightly about you when he said:
“‘This people honors me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.'” (Matthew 15.7-8)
What God desires is an inside condition that appreciates his character and which loves him from the heart.
How Does God Win the Heart?
How can God achieve his desire for people to experience his love in a mutually beneficial relationship?
God could fashion robots that were perfectly aligned with him from the inside out. We may marvel at a robot, but it would be strange indeed to form a love relationship with a robot.
The same logic could be applied to an awesome display of power that would cause people to cower in obedience before the Almighty. It is virtually impossible to command love through his power and might.
Only love can produce love. John wrote, “In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4.10).
The self-sacrifice of the Suffering Servant has captured hearts for generations. Multitudes have fallen in love with God and demonstrated it from the inside of their being to demonstrable acts of love.
Countless times, people have asked me, “Why did Jesus have to die? Why didn’t God have another plan?”
One answer is that God wanted to capture our hearts through love. When we look at God’s great love that would go to the cross for us, it captures our hearts for love.
About This Blog
Please join Rudy Ross and me on YouTube today as we talk about why God works on our inside condition.
I am indebted to John Oswalt for his insights. His two-volume commentary on Isaiah is very insightful.
Please email your prayer request to firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on Facebook. The Maywood Baptist Church prayer team will pray for you.