April 13, 2023

The Silent Lamb

Isaiah 53:1-12

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth. . . .

—  Isaiah 53:7

The prophet Isaiah pointed to Jesus about 700 years before his birth, describing him as a suffering servant of God who was “led like a lamb to the slaughter, and . . . did not open his mouth.” The Son of God was “pierced for our transgressions” and “crushed for our iniquities.” And “by his wounds we are healed.” He was despised and mocked. He was led to crucifixion under the cursing of a bloodthirsty crowd, but he did not return cursing for cursing. Like a silent lamb, Jesus offered himself as a sacrifice for our sin.

He endured the excruciating pain of being nailed to a cross and lifted up to die in view of all who passed by. Even though he suffered terrible torment, he scorned the shame of the cross for the joy that was set before him (Hebrews 12:2). Even though he was obedient to death, he endured the crushing blow of the law that we deserved. Even though he was the blessed one, he was made to be a curse for us by taking our place. He bore our sins and shed his blood to redeem us from captivity and certain death. His suffering brought us relief. His death brought us life. There, at the cross, Jesus opened for us the inexhaustible fountain of salvation!

Lord God, your Son bore the sufferings that should have been mine. But at no time did he complain. He was moved by love to receive my punishment so that I might have peace. In him I give thanks. Amen.

About the author — Hernandes Lopes

Rev. Hernandes Dias Lopes grew up in a Christian home in Brazil. Following his 1981 graduation from Seminário Presbiteriano do Sul in Campinas, Brazil, he served two congregations of the Presbyterian Church in Brazil. In 2000, he earned a doctor of ministry degree from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi. Rev. Lopes has been the voice of the television program Verdade e Vida (“Truth and Life”) since 2006. In 2010 he was appointed Portuguese ministry leader for Back to God Ministries International. Rev. Lopes and his wife, Tinha, have two college-age children.

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