Jesus Was Anointed to Proclaim Good Tidings
Text: Isaiah 61:1-4,8-11 Speaker: Pastor Matthew Ude Festival: Advent Passages: Isaiah 61:1-4,8-11
The Year of the Lord’s Favor (Listen)
61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;1
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;2
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3 to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the LORD, that he may be glorified.3
4 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.
8 For I the LORD love justice;
I hate robbery and wrong;1
I will faithfully give them their recompense,
and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their offspring shall be known among the nations,
and their descendants in the midst of the peoples;
all who see them shall acknowledge them,
that they are an offspring the LORD has blessed.
10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the earth brings forth its sprouts,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up,
so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise
to sprout up before all the nations.
The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor
This is THE verse, really the only verse that matters in this chapter. Everything that follows is really a jubilation describing all the way in which this servant of the Lord will proclaim good news.
He is the anointed that is the choose one. We almost always think of authority as a bad thing. One of the first people we complain about is our boss. The boss is always wrong. The bosses way of doing things is always the wrong we way. Our way is better. We hate it when people tell us what to do, or tell us that we are wrong.
But with God this is not so. In fact you could say that this is the very heart of sin. Rebellion against authority is ultimately rebellion against God, and rebellion against God is at its core rebellion against authority. We want to be free to do our own thing, and to do it the way we want to do it.
But as I said it is not so with God. Obedience to authority is one of prime concerns of the Christ. The very son of God himself will not go out to preach until He has received the anointing. But once He is chosen, once He is given the task then he goes out to do that task, he does not delay.
Obedience, from the very first sentence here we see the obedience of Christ
Secondly “the Spirit of the Lord is upon me”
The Spirit of the Lord was among men in the beginning. But it was not a good experience. The Lord said my Spirit shall not strive with me. But it was a constant fight, so that the Lord grew tired of constantly fighting with men, because of their rebellion. He grew tired and the Spirit was taking from men. And there other places where it was given such as to Saul, but again Saul only grieved the Holy Spirit until it was taken away again. But here the Spirit is given and is not taken away, AND there is no striving. Why? Because Jesus was obedient to the Father.
Maybe you don’t like it when the pastor tells you what to do. But as long as we refuse to obey God, there will be strife, not only between us and the Spirit but between one another. “They have turned everyone to his own way.” We refuse to obey God, there is no more authority left, and we each choose for ourselves.
But in the servant of God we see the Son, who is perfectly obedient, and then the Spirit dwells with him in peace. And the two are united in obedience and purpose.
What is that purpose? To proclaim glad tidings
I’ll say that again, what is the purpose of the Holy Spirit? To proclaim glad tidings, that is the forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ.
Notice how wrong those are who claim that they and they alone have the Holy Spirit. And they attempt to prove it through, speaking in tongues, healings, prophecy and other so called manifestations of the Spirit. But in so doing they prove only that they do not have the Holy Spirit. For the purpose of the Holy Spirit is to proclaim the forgiveness of sins.
Those who receive the Holy Spirit this will be their purpose as well. As it is the purpose of the Christ, and He received the Spirit for this purpose.
But now notice how He himself describes, for it is Christ himself talking here, how he fulfills this purpose in all three office for which he was anointed.
We are told that He is anointed, but He is anointed as what? In the Old Testament there are three offices for which you received an anointing from God, prophet, priest and king. Our text simply says He is the anointed, messach, it doesn’t say which because it is all three. He is the ANNOINTED, prophet priest and king. And He proclaims this good news as all three.
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
Casting people in prison, binding people, killing criminals this is the job of a king. But also setting people free, proclaiming pardon. Jesus was anointed as king so that he could do the second part. So that He could open the prison, release the captives.
Hunter Newton here is studying. He wants to be a secondary school teacher. Do you think he wants to be a teacher so that he can give students F’s. Does he want to be a teacher so that he can punish kids who won’t listen? No, he wants to teach kids who are excited to learn about the battle at Thermopylae. He wants kids to learn and to give them A’s. Unfortunately he will have to do the other, but it’s not why he is going to be a teacher.
So Christ, will unfortunately have to bind some. But it’s not His purpose. His purpose is coming to set us free from our own sin. He rejoices to serve as King so that he can open the prisons.
What happens to people who rebel against authority? They get thrown in prison. So are we. Jesus was anointed as our king to set us free.
2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 3 To console those who mourn in Zion,
Here we have the words of a prophet, proclaim, comfort, console. Jesus is anointed as our prophet, anointed as a prophet for the same reason he was anointed as king, in order to preach the good news.
We talked about Samuel, how the very first thing that he had to do as a prophet would be to tell Eli that the Lord was going to kill him and his family, that’s not a very nice thing. Unfortunately a prophet sometimes has to speak the law.
But again that isn’t why Christ came. If that was his goal well He did a pretty good job of that on top of Mount Sinai. But no he didn’t come to do that, He came to tell us our sins are forgiven.
The acceptable year – that is the year when all debts are forgiven.
Day of vengeance – here this is a reason for joy, yes the Lord is coming in judgment but not on us, we have been release, rather judgment on all who oppose Him.
To comfort and console all who mourn, this is not the empty comfort which is all we have in this world, this is the glorious truth that what you thought to be lost is restored to you.
To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.”
beauty for ashes – a beautiful headdress, he’s putting a crown or tiara on your head instead of ashes.
oil – anoint you in a sweet smelling oil, instead of a mourner with frazzled hear and smelling for a lack of a bath or clean clothes
That you may be called righteous.
These are all things a priest would do and wear. The priest’s job was to go between the people and God.
Kind of like when you’re a timid 16 year old. And you like a girl but you’re scared. So you ask your friend to go talk to her for you. So a priest was to go between man and God, because we in our sinfulness cannot approach God.
As priest also then Jesus proclaims the good news. You are now righteous, the sacrifice has been made. You are now dressed as a priest because you can now approach God.
Starting in verse 10, Isaiah responds in joy and delight at this wonderful news.
I am the rebel who was put in prison, but now the King has set me free.
I am sinner but the prophet tells me that I am forgiven.
I am a miserable wretch, but now the priest has dressed me in righteousness.
Hearing all this, Isaiah says, I will rejoice. And that is the point of today, the rose candle on the advent wreath, that we all say, “hearing such great news I will rejoice.” The anointed one has come to proclaim glad tidings.