Bible Study Guides – The Suffering Servant

February 15, 2009 – February 21, 2009

Key Text

“He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5.

Study Help: The Desire of Ages, 741–757; “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 974.


“We must not shrink from the depths of humiliation to which the Son of God submitted in order to raise us from the degradation and bondage of sin to a seat at His right hand.” That I May Know Him, 65.

1 What did John the Baptist understand about the promised Messiah? How was God’s glory revealed? Isaiah 40:5; John 1:14.

Note: “Alone in the silent night he [John the Baptist] read God’s promise to Abraham of a seed numberless as the stars. The light of dawn, guilding the mountains of Moab, told of Him who should be as ‘the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds.’ II Samuel 23:4. And in the brightness of noontide he saw the splendor of His manifestation, when ‘the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.’ Isaiah 40:5.

“With awed yet exultant spirit he searched in the prophetic scrolls the revelations of the Messiah’s coming—the promised seed that should bruise the serpent’s head; Shiloh, ‘the peace giver,’ who was to appear before a king should cease to reign on David’s throne. Now the time had come. A Roman ruler sat in the palace upon Mount Zion. By the sure word of the Lord, already the Christ was born.” The Desire of Ages, 102, 103.

2 How did Christ reveal the Father? John 1:18; 17:25, 26.

Note: “By coming to dwell with us, Jesus was to reveal God both to men and to angels. He was the Word of God—God’s thought made audible. In His prayer for His disciples He says, ‘I have declared unto them Thy name’—‘merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth’—‘that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.’ [John 17:26; Exodus 34:6; John 17:26.] But not alone for His earthborn children was this revelation given. Our little world is the lesson book of the universe. God’s wonderful purpose of grace, the mystery of redeeming love, is the theme into which ‘angels desire to look,’ [I Peter 1:12] and it will be their study throughout endless ages. Both the redeemed and the unfallen beings will find in the cross of Christ their science and their song. It will be seen that the glory shining in the face of Jesus is the glory of self-sacrificing love. In the light from Calvary it will be seen that the law of self-renouncing love is the law of life for earth and heaven; that the love which ‘seeketh not her own’ [I Corinthians 13:5] has its source in the heart of God; and that in the meek and lowly One is manifested the character of Him who dwelleth in the light which no man can approach unto.” The Desire of Ages, 19, 20.

3 How did Christ respond to the abuse heaped upon Him by sinful men? Isaiah 50:4–6; 52:14; 53:3–7.

Note: “It was to bring the bread of life to His enemies that our Saviour left His home in heaven. Though calumny and persecution were heaped upon Him from the cradle to the grave, they called forth from Him only the expression of forgiving love.” Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing, 71.

4 How did the prophecy of Isaiah 53:12 meet its fulfillment? Luke 22:37; 23:33. What effect does this have upon each one of us? John 3:14–16; 12:32.

Note: “Christ on the cross, not only draws men to repentance toward God for the transgression of His law—for whom God pardons He first makes penitent—but Christ has satisfied justice; He has proffered Himself as an atonement. His gushing blood, His broken body, satisfy the claims of the broken law, and thus He bridges the gulf which sin has made. He suffered in the flesh that with His bruised and broken body He might cover the defenseless sinner. The victory gained at His death on Calvary broke forever the accusing power of Satan over the universe, and silenced his charges that self-denial was impossible with God and therefore not essential in the human family.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 974.

5 What encouraged Christ to endure the torments of His trial and crucifixion? Isaiah 53:11.

Note: “What sustained the Son of God in His betrayal and trial? He saw of the travail of His soul and was satisfied. He caught a view of the expanse of eternity and saw the happiness of those who through His humiliation should receive pardon and everlasting life. He was wounded for their transgressions, bruised for their iniquities. The chastisement of their peace was upon Him, and with His stripes they were healed. His ear caught the shout of the redeemed. He heard the ransomed ones singing the song of Moses and the Lamb.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 43, 44.

6 How should Christ’s suffering and death affect our lives on a practical, daily basis? Romans 6:10, 13; Galatians 6:14.

Note: “The cross of Calvary appeals in power, affording a reason why we should love Christ now, and why we should consider Him first, and best, and last, in everything. We should take our fitting place in humble penitence at the foot of the cross. We may learn the lessons of meekness and lowliness of mind as we go up to Mount Calvary, and, looking upon the cross, see our Saviour in agony, the Son of God dying, the Just for the unjust. Behold Him who could summon legions of angels to His assistance with one word, a subject of jest and merriment, of reviling and hatred. He gives Himself a sacrifice for sin. When reviled, He threatened not; when falsely accused, He opened not His mouth. He prays on the cross for His murderers. He is dying for them. He is paying an infinite price for every one of them.” That I May Know Him, 65.

7 What is one of the greatest needs of every individual? Isaiah 26:3; 48:18; Psalm 40:7, 8.

Note: “Those who take Christ at His word, and surrender their souls to His keeping, their lives to His ordering, will find peace and quietude. Nothing of the world can make them sad when Jesus makes them glad by His presence. In perfect acquiescence there is perfect rest. The Lord says, ‘Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.’ Isaiah 26:3. Our lives may seem a tangle; but as we commit ourselves to the wise Master Worker, He will bring out the pattern of life and character that will be to His own glory. And that character which expresses the glory—character—of Christ will be received into the Paradise of God. A renovated race shall walk with Him in white, for they are worthy.” The Desire of Ages, 331.

8 How did Jesus fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah 26:3 for us? Matthew 11:28–30.

Note: “As through Jesus we enter into rest, heaven begins here. We respond to His invitation: Come, learn of Me, and in thus coming we begin the life eternal. Heaven is a ceaseless approaching to God through Christ. The longer we are in the heaven of bliss, the more and still more of glory will be opened to us; and the more we know of God, the more intense will be our happiness. As we walk with Jesus in this life, we may be filled with His love, satisfied with His presence. All that human nature can bear, we may receive here.” The Desire of Ages, 331, 332.

9 What is the position of Jesus Christ in our spiritual building? Isaiah 28:16; I Corinthians 3:10, 11; Ephesians 2:20.

Note: “Human power and human might did not establish the church of God, and neither can they destroy it. Not on the rock of human strength, but on Christ Jesus, the Rock of Ages, was the church founded, ‘and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it’ Matthew 16:18. The presence of God gives stability to His cause. … God’s glorious work, founded on the eternal principles of right, will never come to nought.” Prophets and Kings, 595, 596.

10 What does Christ, the Rock, do to us if we accept Him, and what does He do to us if we reject Him? Luke 20:17, 18.

Note: “To those who believe, Christ is the sure foundation. These are they who fall upon the Rock and are broken. Submission to Christ and faith in Him are here represented. To fall upon the Rock and be broken is to give up our self-righteousness and to go to Christ with the humility of a child, repenting of our transgressions, and believing in His forgiving love. And so also it is by faith and obedience that we build on Christ as our foundation. … Without this connection, no man can be saved. Without the life of Christ in us, we cannot withstand the storms of temptation. Our eternal safety depends upon our building upon the sure foundation.” The Desire of Ages, 599.

“Christ is coming, and Christ is to be revealed in you, if you will only allow His image to be revealed in you. Fall on the Rock and be broken. … You want to break in pieces before God your pride, yourself, your folly, your wickedness, your dishonesty, your corruption of heart, your licentiousness, your impurity.” Sermons and Talks, vol. 1, 212.

“And on ‘whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.’ [Matthew 21:44.] The people who rejected Christ were soon to see their city and their nation destroyed. Their glory would be broken, and scattered as the dust before the wind. And what was it that destroyed the Jews? It was the rock which, had they built upon it, would have been their security. It was the goodness of God despised, the righteousness spurned, the mercy slighted. Men set themselves in opposition to God, and all that would have been their salvation was turned to their destruction.” The Desire of Ages, 600.

Additional Reading

“Christ has left us a perfect, sinless example. His followers are to walk in His footsteps. If they are not transformed in character, they can never dwell with Him in His kingdom. Christ died to elevate and ennoble them, and those who retain hereditary tendencies to wrong can not dwell with Him. He suffered all that it is possible for human flesh to suffer and endure, that we might pass triumphantly through all the temptations Satan may invent to destroy our faith.

“In Christ is our only hope. God has daily victories for His people to gain. … By His heavenly gifts the Lord has made ample provision for His people. An earthly parent can not give his child a sanctified character. He cannot transfer his character to his child. God alone can transform us. Christ breathed on His disciples, and said, ‘Receive ye the Holy Ghost.’ [John 20:22.] This is the great gift of heaven. Christ imparted to them through the Spirit His own sanctification. He imbued them with His power, that they might win souls to the gospel. Henceforth Christ would live through their faculties, and speak through their words. They were privileged to know that hereafter He and they were to be one. They must cherish His principles and be controlled by His Spirit. They were no longer to follow their own way, to speak their own words. The words they spoke were to proceed from a sanctified heart, and fall from sanctified lips. No longer were they to live their own selfish life; Christ was to live in them. … He would give to them the glory that He had with the Father, that He and they might be one in God.

“Young men and young women should realize that to be one with Christ is the highest honor to which they can attain. … Consecrate all that there is of you—soul, body, and spirit—to the Lord. Yield every power you have to the control of the Holy Spirit.” Sons and Daughters of God, 294.

“Isaac was a figure of the Son of God, who was offered a sacrifice for the sins of the world. God would impress upon Abraham the gospel of salvation to man. In order to do this, and make the truth a reality to him as well as to test his faith, He required him to slay his darling Isaac. All the sorrow and agony that Abraham endured through that dark and fearful trial were for the purpose of deeply impressing upon his understanding the plan of redemption for fallen man. He was made to understand in his own experience how unutterable was the self-denial of the infinite God in giving His own Son to die to rescue man from utter ruin. To Abraham no mental torture could be equal to that which he endured in obeying the divine command to sacrifice his son.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 369.

©2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.