Isaiah 61 has our prophet prophetically speaks for the Messiah, and the Messiah announces that He is blessed and empowered by the Spirit of the Lord God. He also defines quite a long and detailed assignment. “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to”:
- “bring good news to the poor
- bind up the brokenhearted
- proclaim liberty to the captives
- opening of the prison to those who are bound
- proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
- proclaim the day of vengeance of our God
- comfort all who mourn
- grant to those who mourn in Zion
- give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes
- give them the oil of gladness instead of mourning
- give them the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit
- call them oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord
- He may be glorified”
Talk about a detailed list of things Jesus came to deal with. The Messiah announces that He is here to heal the damage that sin brings. Sin has done great damage, so there needs to be a great work of redemption. Jesus went to the Cross to deal with sin once and for all. Because sin brings grief, He will comfort all who mourn. Jesus fixes it all. That’s how God shows His love. He sent Christ while we were yet sinners.
“They shall build up the ancient ruins; they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations”. God loves to restore ruins. He wants to use His people to restore and rebuild things that are broken down and ruined. But He doesn’t merely restore broken down cities and nations. He builds up the ruins of lives that have fallen apart. If we follow Christ, He will come into our life and help us rebuild that which sin has broken down. He restores the devastation and makes us whole.
God has made a way. “For I the Lord love justice; I hate robbery and wrong; I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them”. We need that way because God is a God of justice. He can’t ignore sin. He can’t overlook or ignore it. His nature will not allow that. He is faithful to provide a way for us to address our sin. In fact, He has given us an everlasting covenant that allows us to overcome the sin problem we have as humans and get right with Him through grace. Jesus is that way. We need to cling to the Rock and make faith in Him our own!