Sunday, November 14, 2010


"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me; because the LORD hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty among the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn" (Isa. 61:1-2).

When comparing this passage to Luke's Gospel, two things immediately stand out as odd. For one, the Isaiah passage, and Luke's supposed quote of the passage are not worded the same. Since both are Scripture and therefore cannot contradict, it is obvious that Jesus did not read the passage, but He expressed its meaning; that is, He interpreted it. Luke's version does not say Jesus read the passage. There is a great irony here, in that the experts on the Word of God didn't correct Him, but instead marveled at "the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth" (Lk. 4:22). Why would they marvel if He was simply reading the Scripture? They understood that He was claiming to be the Anointed One, the Son of God, and so they asked, "Is not this Joseph's son?" The answer is no, absolutely not (Matt. 1:16; Lk. 3:23).

The other obvious difference between Isaiah 61:1-2 and Luke 4:18-19 is that Jesus stopped interpreting midway through the second verse. Jesus stopped at that point, because the rest of the verse refers to His Second Coming. Neither the Scofield Reference Bible or the Ryrie Study Bible make the distinction between Jesus reading and Jesus interpreting the passage, but they both point out that the second half of Isaiah 61:2 refers to the Second Coming of God's Anointed. As I have said many times, Jesus came the first time to be our Passover Lamb, but when He returns, He will come as the Lion of the tribe of Judah (Jn. 1:29, 36; 1 Cor. 5:7; Rev. 5:5). His first appearing was marked by meekness and self-sacrifice; His second will be marked by His absolute authority and His rod of discipline (Matt. 11:29; Rev. 2:27; 12:5; 19:15).

If ever there was a verse of Scripture that could be described as "good news/bad news," it is Isaiah 61:2! The good news is that the Anointed of God humbled himself to die for our sins, and by putting our trust in Him, we will escape the wrath of God (Phil. 2:5-8; Rom. 5:9; 1 Thes. 1:10; etc.). The bad news is that all who fail to accept His payment for their sins are going to have to face His wrath (Lk. 21:23; Jn. 3:36; Rom. 2:5; Eph. 5:6; Col. 3:6; Rev. 6:16-17; etc.). By accepting Jesus as God's Anointed the first time He came, we can avoid facing His wrath at His Second Coming. It is our choice. Jesus died (for our sins), Jesus was buried and Jesus rose again according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:3-4). All He requires of us it that we believe God raised Him from the dead, and that we public declare our faith (Rom. 10:9-10). If you believe, tell somebody! Thank God for His Anointed Son! Praise the Lord!

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