Terrified of Sin
Isaiah 53 has to be the best news for sinners. All of us are sinners. All of us should feel the weight of guilt. It seems to be popular nowadays to make sure nobody feels guilty. True preaching and teaching wants to make the sinner feel guilty.
Beyond that, part of the role of the preacher and believers who give witness to Christ is to terrify sinners. There’s an interesting idea. We are to say what Paul said: “Knowing the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.”
Where is the terrifying of sinners because they are guilty? The penalty of that is eternal punishment in hell. That’s what every sinner should feel.
God punished him for the sins of all who will ever believe in him.
We’re not talking about psychological guilt. We’re talking about real guilt for having rebelled against a holy God. We’re talking about the corruption and impurity that is profoundly embedded in every human being’s heart. Every sinner should feel the full weight of that guilt.
The Hope of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit works to that end, convicting the world of sin, righteousness, and judgement. To the convicted sinner, Isaiah 53 is the best news you could ever hear.
He was wounded for our transgressions. He was bruised for our iniquities. That is the greatest news. That’s why the gospel is the good news. He took our place. God punished him for the sins of all who will ever believe in him.
Since he took the sins that were ours and bore the punishment in full, you don’t need to continue to feel guilty about your sins. You don’t want to be comfortable with your sins, but you don’t want to have some kind of terrifying guilt because they’re all paid for if you’re in Christ.
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Isaiah is quite lengthy, but there is great joy to be gained from diligently engaging with it.