This year I am going to attempt to do something I have never done before, on this blog at least. Today marks the first day of Advent and I am going to attempt to post a blog every day, right up until Christmas.
A few years ago I did a series of studies on the names and descriptors of Jesus, primarily taken from the Old Testament Messianic prophecies. I have long wanted to develop these and so this year I am going to include them in this blog, in association with quotes from my books. I want to focus on Jesus, more than ever this Christmas, when there are so many difficult things going on in the world. I hope that you will follow along with me, and be taken up with the myriad ways Jesus is presented in Scripture. That you will see more and more just how wonderful He is.
Isaiah is an Old Testament book full of prophecy, and within it’s pages are many references to the coming Messiah. These use many different names and ways of describing the coming Saviour. The one I want to focus on today on mentioned in Isaiah 42:1, and echoed in Is 43:10 and Isa 49 : 6.
Through Isaiah’s prophetic words God describes the one to come as ‘My Servant’. We know this was a prophecy about Jesus as Matthew quotes it in Matt 12:18-21. Reading Isaiah 42:1-4 we can see that this Servant will carry the Spirit of God and will bring justice – a form of justice that doesn’t crush the already bruised. In Isaiah 49 : 6 it tells us He will come bringing light to the gentiles, and salvation to the ends of the earth.
In the New testament, in Phil 2:7, Paul describes Jesus as the one who came as a ‘bond servant’ – one who knows they have no rights of their own and yet are willingly submitted to obey and serve the one in authority over them. Jesus willingly left behind any rights He had as God’s Son and took the form of a servant, demonstrating this in the washing of the disciples’ feet in John 13. He came willingly submitted to God’s authority and lovingly enslaved to Him, obedient to the cross. It was His choice and God honoured Him for it ‘my elect one in whom my soul delights’ (Is 42:1).
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He came as a servant in order to bring about our salvation, and in doing so Jesus gave us the supreme example. But did coming as a servant lessen His power, authority or kingship? No! That is the most amazing thing. He came as a servant, but also as a king. He showed us that true leadership requires humility, compassion and a servant heart. To those we are called to serve, and towards the One who calls us.
The Servant King shows us that we are called to be lovingly enslaved to God, and lovingly enslaved to one another.
In the areas of your life where you have authority, how can you follow Christ’s example of being a servant?
‘But kneeling to serve doesn’t lessen Father Abbot’s authority, or the respect he engenders. In fact, it does the opposite. We watch him pour himself out and we want to follow his example. He leads us with a quiet and loving authority, even disciplining us when necessary. But because we know the goodness of his heart, his inert humility, his love for his fellow man, we take the discipline and the encouragement with equal gratitude. He is being as Christ was, you see, the Servant King. He does not abuse his position of authority by lording it over us, rather he uses it to teach us a better way. The mark of a true godly leader.’
‘The Pilgrim’ pp 176-177
Joy Margetts is a published author and blogger. Her books are works of Christian Historical fiction. Set in medieval Wales against the backdrop of Cistercian abbey life, they tell stories of faith, hope and God’s redemptive power. Her debut novel ‘The Healing‘ was published by Instant Apostle on 19 March 2021. Joy has also self- published a short novella, ‘The Beloved‘ as both a companion to ‘The Healing‘, and as an easy to read standalone story, which is available to buy on Amazon Kindle.
‘The Pilgrim‘, her second full length novel, was published by Instant Apostle on 22 July 2022
More information on Joy, and her books can be found here www.joymargetts.com