Isaiah 55, 50, 53, Psalm 22, Zechariah 12, 13

Isaiah 55; Isaiah 50; Isaiah 53; Psalm 22; Zechariah 12; Zechariah 13; Isaiah 55:1-5
I turn next to the quotation from Isa. 55, and its application to the resurrection of Christ. This also is objected to in the supercilious language above quoted. If the sense and meaning of a prophecy is to have any influence on the interpretation of it, we are led here at once to the subject of which the apostle speaks. The chapter is a summons, in the fullest largeness of grace, addressed first to the Jews, but so. as to open it out to all by the terms of the invitation-" every one that thirsteth "-to all who sought after righteousness from God. Thus in principle, though not in immediate address, it lets in the Gentiles, so that, according to the whole tenor of scripture, we must look for Messiah, and for a change in the relationship of God with Israel. Still the address is to Israel. Thus it is the apostle Paul constantly draws out this class of passages, sheaving the address to the Jew first, and yet a principle contained which let in the Gentile if he had faith and spiritual need. This is further developed in the following verses. Verses 4 and 5 proclaim some remarkable personage, who is not named, but who is supposed to be known by the previous testimonies of God, who is to be a witness and a leader of the nations-translated people, in English, but which is in the plural le-ummim (לאומים)-and then the call and influx of the nations through his means is announced. But then in verse 3 this includes an everlasting covenant to be made, particularly with the people of God (the Jews), that is, the assured mercies of David. These mercies of David are incontestably the establishment of permanent blessing in the promised seed of David, in whose time the righteous should flourish (in a word, in Messiah, the Christ). Hence the existence of Messiah in the power of an endless life is most certainly announced here. Nor is this a new thought. The Jews say, "We have heard out of the law, that Christ abideth forever: and how sagest thou, The Son of man must be lifted up?" Yet, if it were Messiah (as a Jew under the law), known, as the apostle calls it, "after the flesh," the Gentiles could not have thus been let in in common with the Jews. Indeed, we who know the need of redemption can say "the corn of wheat" would have abode alone. Thus we get elements in the passage which show that, for their accomplishment, Christ must have been raised. An everlasting covenant in the accomplishment of the sure mercies of David, and Gentiles called, supposed (when duly weighed) a closing of the strict Jewish system, and yet a Messiah who was to abide forever-a difficulty felt by the Jews in the question above referred to when our Lord alludes to His rejection. Now Christ was rejected and put to death. Hence the apostle introduces to the Jews (objects of this everlasting covenant and holding themselves to be such) the resurrection, as alone accomplishing, or securing the accomplishment of, the sure and abiding mercies of David.
Nothing could more largely and perfectly bring together all the elements of dispensational truth, and give the key and keystone of the manner of their accomplishment. It is nothing but the miserable narrowness of mind of those who can see nothing of God's ways out of their own petty circle of ideas, which could make the objections which German skeptics, and their imitators, do. They comment on a book of which they know nothing, the object and import of which they have not even studied-an immense scope of connected thought and system, reaching from Genesis to the melting away of time into eternity-all its parts hanging together, and developing every form of relationship between God and man, historically pursued, yet morally and individually realized-in which each part fits into the other, like the pieces of a dissected map, proving the perfectness and completeness of the whole-all this system, I say, making a complete whole, in absolute unity, yet written (for written it was, as the best testimony proves) at long intervals, over a space of some fifteen hundred years, pursued through every various condition in which man can be placed, of ignorance, darkness, and light, with principles brought out into intended contrast, as the law and the gospel, yet never losing its perfect and absolute unity or the relationship of its parts-all this is passed over by these skeptics. They are not conscious of the existence of it. They have about as much knowledge of the Bible as a babe who took the dissected map and would put together two parts from the antipodes, because they were colored red and would look pretty.
That Mr. N. (who does not believe it himself, and evidently did not at the period of his history) should have found difficulty in pointing out the sufferings of Christ in the Old Testament, is very natural. Had he as much faith as a Jew in the Bible, he would have had none. Let the reader turn to Isa. 50; 53 Psa. 22; Zech. 12; 13, and indeed a crowd of other passages, which, having cited these, it is needless to enumerate, and he will be at no loss to find a suffering Messiah. Besides, a crowd of sacrifices (for, as I said, all the parts of scripture unite in one whole) sheaving atonement for sin, which certainly the blood of bulls and goats could not effectuate, pointing to a suffering Messiah; the portion of Joseph and David (which, though not direct proofs, all confirm by analogies which show the mind of God in quite as strong a way when we have the facts and doctrines as direct proofs); the universal position of the saints; the expression of sentiment provided in the Psalms for those who were associated with Messiah, and for Himself, and so used in many instances by Him-all, as does the whole tenor of the Old Testament, point to the sufferings of Him who was to be "exalted and extolled, and very high," but had "his visage so marred more than any man, and his countenance more than the sons of men." I am not aware what Isa. 53 has to do with a double sense. I know that the Rabbis have sought to apply it to Israel, to avoid its application to Christ; but this is a simple sense, and, to any one who reads the chapter, simply absurd. To make of "He" in the phrase, "He was wounded for our" &c. to be a personification of "our," both meaning Israel, and so on, is an effort worthy of the natural opposition of a Jew in raising an objection, and of a German skeptic to be stopped by.