19. The Six Substitutions
Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed. Isaiah 53:4-5
In these two verses we see six substitutions where Christ Himself took our place:
- Surely our griefs He Himself bore.
- Our sorrows He carried.
- But He was pierced through for our transgressions.
- He was crushed for our iniquities.
- The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him.
- By His scourging we are healed.
Note the first four substitutions are “acts of mercy”—not getting what we do deserve. Sickness and disease, grief and pain, rebellion and guilt—all inherent with our nature, and all deserving of judgment. But Christ died to save us from these. Here then is mercy.
The last two are “acts of grace”—getting what we do not deserve. God’s peace, His shalom, and His healing—things which we do not deserve. Christ died to save us for these. Here then is grace.
Over the next few days let us consider these six great acts of mercy and grace which Christ accomplished on the cross.