October 24, 2021

Rev. Bernt P. Tweit



Epistle Lesson; Hebrews 4:9-16

Psalm of the Day; Psalm 22

Gospel Lesson; Mark 10:35-45                        

Sermon Text; Isaiah 53:10-12


So, as I shared at the beginning of the service today, our service has a little bit of a Lenten feel to it, because of our text, because of some of the hymns, and because of some of the prayers that we are going to be praying today.  Our text is Isaiah, chapter fifty three.  Oftentimes, it is this text that is used on Good Friday, which is the height of the Lenten Season.  As a matter of a fact, today has so much of a Lenten feel, that I thought about coming out, and wearing Lenten purple, but I chose to stay with Pentecost green.

Our text for today is the last three verses, from Isaiah, chapter fifty three.  This is God's Word.


Yet it was the LORD's Will to crush Him and allow Him to suffer.  Because you made His life a guilt offering, He will see offspring.  He will prolong His days, and the LORD's gracious plan will succeed in His hand.  After His soul experiences anguish, He will see the light of life.  He will provide satisfaction.  Through their knowledge of Him, my just servant will justify the many, for He Himself carried their guilt.  Therefore I will give Him an allotment among the great, and with the strong He will share plunder, because He poured out His life to death, and He let Himself be counted with rebellious sinners.  He Himself carried the sin of many, and He intercedes for the rebels.


These are your words.  Heavenly Father, lead us in the way of truth.  Your Word is truth.



Hard to believe it was already twelve years ago, but in January of 2009, there was a flight that left the airport at LaGuardia, in New York city, headed for the Carolina's.  Shortly after takeoff, it was not the plane that came in contact with a flock of birds, but it was a flock of geese that came in contact with the plane.  The flock was so large that many geese went through those turbine engines, and the birds rendered the engines useless. 

The pilots needed to make a decision.  “Are we able to circle back, and make it to LaGuardia?”  They could not. 

“Are we able to make it to some close airports that are nearby that are smaller?”  They couldn't. 

So, the decision was made for that airplane to land in the middle of The Hudson River.  It became known as The Miracle on the Hudson. 

It was not the initial plan that day to do that, but the plan succeeded.  All one hundred and fifty-five people on board survived. 

It was God's plan from the beginning that Adam and Eve live forever.  But, Adam and Eve changed that plan, when they fell in to sin. 

God had a plan.  And, God came to Adam and Eve with that plan.  He told them He would send, some day, someone to be their Savior, and to be their Redeemer.  At Christmastime, we hear this familiar passage from the book of Galatians that talks about how God continued that plan that would succeed. 

“When the fullness of time had come,

God sent His Son,

born of a woman, born under law,

to redeem those under law,

that we might receive the full rights of sons.”

Peter, as he was revealing this in his Pentecost sermon, just fifty days after Jesus' resurrection from the dead, said this in review to the people who were listening that day.  He said this. 

“Jesus was handed over

by God's set purpose and foreknowledge. 

And you, with the help of wicked men,

put Him to death by nailing Him to the cross.”

This was the Lord's Will.  Well, we might ask ourselves the question, “What was the Lord's Will?”  It is interesting that our text for today says this. 

“Yet it was the Lord's will to crush Him,

and allow Him to suffer.”  

That seems pretty harsh, doesn't it?  It was the Lord's Will to crush Him, and to have Him suffer.

There once was a dad who had twins that were about ten years old.  They were a little mischievous, as sometimes kids can be.  They would get in to trouble, and he would discipline them.  They would get into that same trouble, and he would discipline them, and they would get in to that same trouble, again.  So, he would discipline them, again. 

So, he chose to change tactics, a little bit.  One day, when they got in to trouble, he brought them up to his bedroom.  He took the belt off from around his waist.  He took the shirt off of his own back, and handed the belt to his kids.  He said, “Because of the wrong you have done, I want you to take this belt, and I want you to whip me over my back ten times, each.  

They said, “We can't do that.”

He said, “Discipline is needed, because of the wrong that you have done.”

Eventually, he had them whip him on the back ten times, each. It was such a hard, and challenging thing for them to do. 

After he was whipped, he hugged his children, and said that he loved his children.  And, it really changed their attitude.  It really changed their not wanting to do wrong, because they realized discipline was needed for sin.  Punishment was needed to be handed out, because of the wrong they had done.

In our text for today, from Isaiah, chapter fifty three, it talks about Jesus being made in to “a guilt offering”.  I just want to do a little review of what the book of Leviticus says about some of the Ceremonial Laws for The Old Testament Jews.  In the book of Leviticus it goes through, and talks about these different kinds of offerings that were needed to be given by the people, because of sin.  They were things like this.  Burnt offerings, grain offerings, fellowship offerings, sin offerings, and guilt offerings.  Our text for today talks about Jesus being “a guilt offering”.  Sometimes, as you know, it is really hard to read the book of Leviticus, because of those Ceremonial Laws.  So, what I have done is I have taken a section of the book of Leviticus that talks about the guilt offering, and I have really summarized it, and narrowed it down to really what it says.  I want to read this text from Leviticus, chapter six.  Again, this is a summary.  But, it says this about the guilt offering. 

“If anyone sins by deceiving, or stealing, or cheating, or lying, or swearing falsely, they must make restitution in full, and add twenty percent.  As a penalty, they must bring to the Lord their guilt offering, a ram without defect.  In this way, the priest will make atonement for them, before the LORD, and they will be forgiven.”

And so, in The Old Testament, they would make restitution for the wrong that was done, add a fifth, or twenty percent, and then they would bring a ram, without defect, to the priest.  That would be offered as a sacrifice, and their sins would be forgiven.

I want to focus on those first five verbs, here.  I want to read them again. 

“So if anyone sins by deceiving, or stealing, or cheating, or lying, or swearing falsely...”

Those are hard verbs to hear, aren't they?  Let us hear them again. 

“If anyone sins by deceiving, stealing, cheating, lying, or swearing falsely...”

You know who those words describe?  Those describe me, standing up here before you.  Those words describe you, sitting at home today.  Those words describe you who are sitting here today.  They are very descriptive of who we are, and restitution needs to be made for sin.  And so, a guilt offering needs to be given.  A guilt offering is a ram without defect.

I am going to change just one word from how John the Baptist put it one day.  (You will understand what I am going to say.)  One day, Jesus and John the Baptist intersected paths.  John was with a group of people, and he pointed to Jesus.  He said something very famous.  I am going to change one word.  Here is what John the Baptist said, when he pointed to Jesus,

“Behold the 'ram' of God who takes away the sin of the world.” 

Jesus has become our guilt offering for us.  He is that ram without defect who took our place.  As a matter of fact, the book of Romans says this about Jesus, in Romans, chapter eight.  Now, because of the restitution that Jesus made because of our sin, it says,

“Therefore, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the Law of the Spirit of Life set us free from the law of sin and death.  For what the law was powerless to do, in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did, by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be an offering for us.”
And so, Jesus has justified the many.  Jesus has justified you.  And He proclaims you to be not guilty.  Also, Jesus has carried our guilt.  And, Jesus has carried our sorrow.

About thirty years ago, (some of you maybe have been there), but about thirty years ago, in Washington D.C., The Vietnam Veterans' Memorial was established, and opened.  The park rangers did not realize this was going to take place, but ever since it has been open, people, when they go to that memorial, leave mementos.  They may leave food, or flowers, or teddy bears, or notes, or various things.  Every night, when the memorial closes, park rangers spend about one hour picking up everything that had been left behind by family members and friends, who wanted to share their love for a loved one who died serving our country.  They are bringing their sorrows and their guilt, and they are leaving it behind. 

Well, with the sorrow and guilt we carry, because of our sin, where can we possibly place it?  You know where to place it.  We can bring those guilts, we can bring those sorrows, and lay them right at the cross of Jesus.  Jesus will justify the many.  Jesus will carry our guilt.  Jesus will carry our sorrows.  And, He has made full restitution for our sin, and through His own sacrifice, He proclaims you to be forgiven.

About this beautiful text, Martin Luther once wrote this, as he looked at all of Isaiah, chapter fifty-three, but particularly the last few verses of our text.  “Oh we would be blessed people, if we could believe this most noble text that must be magnified.  I would wish it to be honored in this church so that we might accustom ourselves to an alert study of this text, to bring us to see Christ as none other than the One who bears and shoulders the burden of our sins.  This figure is a solace to be afflicted.”
As our text for today says,

“...the LORD's gracious plan will succeed...”

Those words were written seven hundred years before Jesus was born.  Today, we can look back two thousand years to what Jesus did at the cross.  Here is what we can say.  The LORD's gracious plan HAS succeeded.

I am going to ask you to do something, during the course of this week.  We just looked at the last few verses of Isaiah, chapter fifty-three.  But, the whole chapter is wonderful.  Go home, and during the course of this week, read all of Isaiah, chapter fifty-three.  It is a beautiful portrait.  It does not mention His name, but it is a portrait of Jesus.  There are few places in scripture that describe God's surpassing mercy for us in so touching a manner.  The LORD's gracious plan has succeeded for you, and for me.



Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.  As it was in the beginning, shall be now, and forevermore.