The Scholar In God’s School
The Scriptural reading: Isaiah 50.
In this chapter Isaiah pictures the Lord Jesus as the Scholar with the opened ear, and then he discusses the four lessons the Lord had learned. The Man Christ Jesus was awakened every morning by His Teacher to receive the instruction of His Father God.
The subject at the beginning of the chapter is the nation of Israel, Israel that as the wife of Jehovah had drifted away from God into spiritual adultery. Because of their dreadful national declension, when the Lord Jesus was born in Bethlehem, and when later as an adult He appeared among His own people, they received Him not. Prophetically the Lord says concerning this, “Wherefore, when I came, was there no man?” (to receive Him) “When I called, was there none to answer?” “Is My hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem? or have I no power to deliver? behold, at My rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a wilderness: their fish stinketh, because there is no water, and dieth for thirst. I clothe the heavens with blackness, and make sackcloth their covering.” Here is Deity; God incarnate in perfect manhood!
Although the One born in Bethlehem is God’s holy well-beloved Son, He declares, “The Lord hath given Me the tongue of the learned, … He wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.” How could it be that the Lord Jesus was a scholar in the school of God? The Word of God makes it absolutely plain that while, on the one hand, He was the Son of God, on the other He was a helpless babe in the arms of Mary. As the Son of God, He was Omniscient, and this word means to possess full and complete knowledge, but as the dependent Man, there were lessons He had to learn by experience. These He learned in order to be a merciful and faithful High Priest able to succour the tempted. Let us now consider the lessons learned by the Lord Jesus:
The Lesson Of Sympathy
The Lord Jesus learned to “know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary” (V. 4). It is impossible to properly sympathize with another person unless you have had some experience. The Lord Jesus in order that He might be our present High Priest had to learn to sympathize with man in everything. He was hungry, thirsty, and He shed tears on at least three occasions. Sympathy means to suffer together, and comes from a word that means suffering. A young couple serving the Lord on the mission field lost their only child. Many of their friends tried to console them, but only one could really comfort; she, a young mother had likewise lost her baby. She put her arms around the sorrowing mother, and said, “I know just how you feel.” The two young mothers then wept together, the one in grief, the other in sympathy. There is One in the glory Who knows exactly how we feel and can sympathize with us.
The Lesson Of Silent Suffering
“He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth: He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He openeth not His mouth” (Isa. 53:7). These were not the sufferings of the cross, but the sufferings immediately prior to the cross. Before He went to Calvary, the sweat fell down to the ground in Gethsemane, and He had the humiliation of being betrayed by one of His own disciples. On the way to the cross His hands were bound, and the Roman lash tore into His flesh; yet, He never uttered a word. He suffered silently, leaving us an example, “that ye should follow His steps” (1 Pet. 2:21).
The Lesson Of Self- Restraint Under False Accusation
The leaders of Israel judged the kind works of Jesus as being wrought by the power of the devil, and they called Him a blasphemer. Some of God’s servants have been called upon to pass through similar experiences. Job’s friends called him a liar and a hypocrite, and in this they were absolutely wrong. They also said that he was suffering because of some secret sin in his life, and that God was dealing with him because of this. We should not make hurried conclusions or say unkind things against God’s beloved people. What did the Lord Jesus do? “When He was reviled, reviled not again; when He suffered, He threatened not; but committed Himself to Him that judgeth righteously” (1 Pet. 2:23). The saints of God might well raise the challenge, “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth” (Rom. 8:33). Jesus could say, “He is near that justifieth Me.” We can likewise leave our case in God’s hands and He will eventually vindicate the right.
The Lesson Of Confidence In The Lord
All of God’s people have difficult experiences which they cannot understand; for all such we have the word of encouragement, “Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of His servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the Name of the Lord, and stay upon his God” (Isa. 50:10).
A small deaf and dumb boy in a French school was asked by a visitor, “Who made you?” The little fellow wrote on the blackboard, “God.” The visitor then enquired, “How do you hope to get to Heaven?” The boy answered by writing, “The blood of Jesus Christ His Son.” The visitor then submitted his last question, “If God made you, and the blood of Christ cleanses you, why did God make you the way you are?” The reply was forthright and clear, “Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Thy sight.”
Our blessed Lord, from the darkness of the cross cried, “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?” He was forsaken that we might trust in the Name of our Lord, and stay upon our God.