We despised him and rejected him—a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way when he went by. He was despised, and we didn’t care. Yet it was our grief he bore, our sorrows that weighed him down. [Isaiah 53:3-4a (TLB)]

angelWhen prophesying about Jesus, Isaiah called Him a “man of sorrows.” Indeed, Jesus carried a tremendous weight of sorrow upon his shoulders—the heaviest of which was the weight of the world’s sins, a weight totally undeserved by this man who was without sin. A compassionate man, Jesus also carried the burden of the world’s heartache. He knew the grief of Jarius, the despair of the bleeding woman, the anguish of Martha and Mary at Lazarus’ death, the self-reproach of the woman at the well, the centurion’s concern for his servant, the torment of the possessed man, and the distress of the lepers. He also knew the weight of the world’s rejection. He was scoffed at by people in his own hometown, many of his early disciples deserted him and Judas would betray him. He wept upon his entry into Jerusalem because of the Israelites’ lost opportunity at salvation; he wanted none to perish. The night of his betrayal, Jesus was filled with grief—indeed, He was a man of sorrows. But, he was also a man of peace, love, purity, holiness, eloquence and love.

Yes, Jesus was a man of sorrows but not a sorrowful man. Could a sorrowful man cause us to sing “Joy to the World!” or “Good Christian Men Rejoice!”? Could He fulfill the angel’s promise of great joy or cause us to sing of “tidings of comfort and joy?” And yet, comfort and joy are what this man of sorrows brought and continues to bring to all who believe.

Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the gift of your precious son—not only a man of sorrows but also a savior who brought us the joy of forgiveness, redemption, salvation, and knowing you.

God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen, Let nothing you dismay;
Remember Christ, our Saviour, Was born on Christmas day,
To save us all from Satan’s power When we were gone astray.
O tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy, O tidings of comfort and joy.
“Fear not,” then said the Angel, “let nothing you affright,
This day is born a Saviour Of pure Virgin bright,
To free all those who trust in Him From Satan’s power and might.”
O tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy, O tidings of comfort and joy.

Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you the most joyful news ever announced, and it is for everyone!” [Luke 2:10 (TLB)]

I have told you this so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your cup of joy will overflow! (John 15:11 (TLB)]