“Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.” (Isaiah 53:10)
How strange – the Lord declares, “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked” (Ezek. 33:11); yet He has pleasure in the death of His righteous Son. The Hebrew verb is the same in these two verses – chaphets – and it means to “take delight in.” How can this be? Because the death of the wicked has no redemptive purpose – it is a great waste; but the death of His Son, though horrible in itself, is the very means for the greatest possible good.
Man’s redemption from sin and Satan was effected by the shedding of Christ’s blood. Without His death there would be no forgiveness of sins, no reconciliation with the Father, no end to the old life of sin, no entrance into a new life of righteousness. The pleasure of the Father is now prospering because of the Son’s obedience unto death. And when Jesus Himself looks back on His suffering, and what it accomplished, He is deeply pleased. “He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied …” (Isa. 53:10)
There is much for us to learn about our suffering from the suffering of our Lord. We are disturbed to think that God would view our suffering with anything but displeasure. He looks though for one thing at all times – not what will make us happy – but how anything in our life can glorify Him. “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.” (Heb. 12:11)
Our God is a master Redeemer – who takes all that life throws at us, even what men and devils meant for evil, and weaves it together for His own good purpose. Let us greatly rejoice, knowing the trials we face will be “found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” (1 Pet. 1:6) In that day we will be far above all sorrow, pain, and tears. We also will see of the travail of our soul and be satisfied, knowing it was worth it all.