THE SERVANT OF THE LORD (EXCERPT OF THE THEOLOGY OF ROBERT B. THOMPSON)
Copyright © 2013 Robert B. Thompson. All Rights Reserved
(“The Servant of the Lord” is taken from The Theology of Robert B. Thompson, copyright © 2012 Robert B. Thompson)
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.
Some passages of Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
The Servant of the Lord
The Book of Isaiah tells us about the Servant of the Lord. The Servant of the Lord is Christ, Head and Body. Each of us who is a member of the Body of Christ finds what our role is by studying Isaiah, Chapter Forty-two, and related passages.
Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations. (Isaiah 42:1—NASB)
The passage above is speaking directly to each member of the Body of Christ. It is telling us that he or she is God’s servant. The Christian preaching of today seems to be stressing that God is our servant. He is not. God’s will is the only legitimate will in the universe.
There is no part of the Bible that tells us good will come to us if we do not do God’s will instead of our own. But for those who set themselves to do God’s will, and only God’s will, the Bible offers us an inheritance more glorious than our wildest hopes and imaginations.
Each member of the Servant of the Lord, the Body of Christ, is upheld by the Father himself. This means that during the chaos that is approaching America, the believer will find that the everlasting Arms are under him or her.
Each member of the Body of Christ is a chosen individual. Many people are called to partake of the Kingdom of God. But to qualify for the responsibilities and inheritance of the servants of the Lord, we must pass from the ranks of the called to the ranks of the chosen. We do this by faithfully following Christ, bearing our personal cross.
God puts his Spirit upon us because we are obedient to Him.
“He will bring justice to the nations.” This thought may be new to us. The traditional view is that once we “accept Christ” we will go to Heaven when we die. What we will do there is not clear, except that we will recline at our ease forever in our mansion while an angel pops grapes into our mouth.
It becomes apparent at once that the traditional view of the Christian salvation is far removed from what the Scriptures tell us. We have not been saved, filled with God’s Spirit and built up by the gifts of the Spirit so we can spend eternity doing nothing of value. God has called us, chosen us, and built us up through the ministries of the Body of Christ so we can bring justice to the nations of the earth.
As we look about us today we can see the efforts being made to bring about a world government with the power to enforce its rules on the citizens of every country. This might be beneficial, if it were not for the fact that the rules of the world government will conflict with the values of Christian people.
There finally will be “peace and safety,” but it will be a peace and safety in line with Satan’s personality and desires. We Americans had better awaken from our comfortable sleep, because our nation rapidly is being prepared to be a part of this world government that does not know the fear of God and does not honor God.
The Servant of the Lord has been chosen by the Father to bring justice to the nations. The stated purpose of the antichrist world government will be to bring justice to the nations. But the antichrist world government always will fumble and end up denying justice to many people. This is because the evil nature of unregenerate people will prove out to be self-serving, personally ambitious. The result inevitably will be iniquities, lies, and treacheries of every kind. Governments always are like this, it seems.
However, it is not God’s desire that the nations of the earth live in injustice. God has permitted the past 6,000 years of agony and insanity so angels and people could see what happens when angels or people follow their own will.
I think the time is up. The audio-visual instruction has been completed. A few more agonizing, insane years of the rule of self-seeking man and self-seeking angels, and Christ shall appear with his righteous angels, and called, chosen, and faithful saints. The resistance of the nations will be smashed with the rod of iron created in the victorious saints. Righteousness, love, peace, and joy will fill the people of the nations of the earth as the saints, having been filled with Christ and taught by Christ, assume the thrones that govern the earth.
“He will bring justice to the nations.” This is the Word of God, less shakable than Gibraltar. It shall take place! We who have been chosen to be members of the Servant of the Lord must endure many frustrations and pains while the rod of iron is created in us. But our inheritance is God and the people of the nations whom God chooses to save.
It will be worth it all when we see Jesus and are invited to share with Him the greatest treasures of all—people.
I am the LORD, I have called You in righteousness, I will also hold You by the hand and watch over You, and I will appoint You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations, (Isaiah 42:6—NASB)
“God so loved the world He gave his only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” Perhaps we would change this to say, “God so loves the Church.” But this is not what is written. God loves the world!
God does not love the present world spirit, for that spirit is Antichrist. But God loves the people of the world, and He desires that as many as possible have eternal life instead of a dead spiritual nature that does not know God or have fellowship with him.
Because of his desire, God has called out of the world his Church, his servant. For two thousand years God has been calling out his servant, the members of the Body of Christ, and bringing them through every conceivable testing and experience. God is not doing this so his servants will be happy doing nothing in Heaven but so they will be able to bring eternal life to whoever will come and drink of the Spirit, and thus come to know God and to have fellowship with Him.
God makes us a covenant for the people of the nations. If they will do what we say, we on our part will open their eyes to God; we will bring them out of the prison of spiritual death and separation from God; we will open the door of their dungeons so they may come out into the Light of God’s Presence.
Perhaps God makes it possible for us to do some of this work today. But the redemption of mankind will come with the return of Christ and his saints and holy angels. The creation is travailing in pain today because the Kingdom of God is about to be brought forth.
The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. (Romans 8:19-21—NIV)
The Servant of the Lord, announced in the forty-second chapter of the Book of Isaiah, is Christ—Head and Body. It appears to me that not every person who professes belief in the Lord Jesus Christ is part of the Body of Christ at this time. There is a firstfruits of the Church, of God’s elect, in the present hour. It is they who will be raised from the dead and raised to meet Christ in the air at His coming. They will perform the work of Christ described in the Book of Isaiah.
The rest of the Church will come to maturity in time to be part of the new Jerusalem as it comes down through the new sky and is established as the Kingdom of God upon the earth. I have written in other essays about the temporary division of the Church, the Body of Christ, and so I will not go into detail at this time. It reminds one of David and his mighty men. They were part of Israel but distinguished by their proficiency in war.
I do not advance lightly the radical thought of a temporary division of the Christian Church into a firstfruits and then the balance of the Church. However the Book of Revelation mentions a firstfruits (Revelation, Chapter Fourteen).
Also, when one thinks about the Lord saying that no person can be his disciple without denying himself and bearing his cross after Christ, and then notices in the Book of Acts that the original Christians all were disciples, it is seen that only a small percentage of today’s churchgoers actually are Christians. The standard set by Christ and His Apostles simply is not attained to by most believers.
Perhaps this is why the Gospel has been watered down in our day, such that anyone who “accepts Christ” (a term not found in the Bible) is eternally assured of residence in Heaven regardless of his or her growth into a new creation of righteous behavior.
Any individual who examines objectively the Christian churches of our day can observe that not very many “believers” are presenting their body a living sacrifice in order to prove God’s will for themselves, and have no intention of doing so.
So when we declare that the Servant of the Lord is Christ and his Body, and that only a firstfruits of the Church of the present hour qualify as a member of the Servant of the Lord, we have objective evidence that such is the case.
The forty-third chapter of the Book of Isaiah continues with Divine statements concerning the Servant of the Lord, whom we believe consists at this time of the most consecrated believers. They will appear with Christ and establish the rule of the Kingdom of God on the earth. The remainder of the Christian people must wait until the final resurrection before taking part in their predestined role as members of the Royal Priesthood, as an integral part of the new Jerusalem.
I am the LORD, I have called You in righteousness, I will also hold You by the hand and watch over You, and I will appoint You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations, (Isaiah 43:1—NASB)
Whenever Isaiah speaks of the Servant of the Lord, referring to him as Jacob, he is not speaking of the Jews by physical birth but of those who are called to be members of the Royal Priesthood, whether Jew or Gentile by physical birth. They are the one Seed of Abraham, in whom the nations of the earth shall be blessed.
Each such member is a special creation, called from the beginning of the world to be part of Christ. God forms such individuals into new creations of righteous behavior. God already has redeemed us. God has called us by name. We belong to Him in a special way, just as was true of the members of the Aaronic priesthood.
And these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. (Romans 8:30—NASB)
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you when you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you. (Isaiah 43:2—NASB)
Every true Christian disciple experiences this promise. We go through very deep waters indeed, but they do not go over our head; we do not drown. We go through hot fires, but somehow, like the three young Hebrew men, we are not burned.
God delights in those whom He has called to be members of the Body of Christ, of the Servant of the Lord. He watches over and cherishes them. Although there are times when they feel forsaken, He always is there making certain they are not tested beyond what they are able to bear.
Don’t ever give up. Keep on pressing forward. God always is there watching. If your testing is severe, it is because God has prepared a throne for you from which you will govern and bless your inheritance of people.
It may seem at times like you will drown or be set ablaze, but you won’t. Just keep trusting, if your tests last for many years. And they may!
Since you are precious in My sight, since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life. (Isaiah 43:4—NASB)
There is no need for us to fear the tumult in the world. All of these chaotic conditions have as their purpose to bring forth the brothers of Christ. This may not seem fair or democratic, but it is the truth.
I think many of God’s people do not realize what it means to be called as a “saint,” a holy one of God. It doesn’t seem fair that God would call out from the ranks of mankind a special people for his own use. But this was true of the nation of Israel, wasn’t it? The Israelites were called out from the rest of the nations, although there was no merit in them that would cause God to do this.
This calling remains on the nation of Israel to the present day. There are some who would destroy Israel. But they labor in vain. Israel is the only nation that God has chosen to know Him in a special way, and He will defend Israel when necessary.
Those of us who are Gentiles by physical birth have been chosen to be part of the one Seed of Abraham, along with those Jews who have been chosen in like manner. We ought therefore to seek God with all our might that we might be found worthy of this high calling. We are not of the world, because the God of Heaven has called us out of the world that we might be a special treasure for Himself.
This may not seem fair to us. But it is the truth. If we are wise we will serve the Lord with a perfect heart. Otherwise our crown may be removed from us and given to another.
I will say to the north, “Give them up!” and to the south, “Do not hold them back.” Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the ends of the earth—everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made. (Isaiah 43:6,7—NIV)
Our Lord Jesus told us that when we Christians are one, the world will believe that it is the God of Heaven who has sent Jesus into the world. That day is coming. The time of denominationalism is nearly over. There will be pressures in the future that will compel the true believers to come out of the man-made structures and become one in Christ.
This will be true of everyone whom God created for his glory, whom He formed and made. As I said, there are a relatively few Christian churchgoers who reveal in themselves the new creation of righteous behavior. The remainder are good people, (although some are malicious and do not have the Spirit of Christ). But they are not abiding in Christ. They are not living in the Spirit of God but in the lusts and passions of the flesh.
The day will come when the firstfruits of the Bride of the Lamb will be filled with the Glory of Christ. All who see them will acknowledge that they are the Seed whom the Lord has blessed. They will be referred to as the ministers of God, The Lord Jesus said that this revelation of Himself will be seen by all mankind, causing numerous people to believe and turn to the Lord.
Bring out the people who are blind, even though they have eyes, and the deaf, even though they have ears (Isaiah 43:8—NASB)
The people of the world see, but they do not see. The members of the Servant of the Lord do not see, but they see. Each of us needs to pray that we do not see the world as the world sees itself, but we see the world as God sees the world. That which is highly esteemed among men often is an abomination to God.
All the nations have gathered together so that the peoples may be assembled who among them can declare this and proclaim to us the former things? Let them present their witnesses that they may be justified, or let them hear and say, “It is true.” (Isaiah 43:9—NASB)
It is the way of the world to boast of its prowess and to proclaim what the future will be. This especially is true in our day because of the increase of electronic media. Such prideful boasting! But the world spirit is one massive Antichrist lie. Only that which has been proclaimed by the Lord Jesus will prove in the end to be the truth.
“You are my witnesses,” declares the LORD, “and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am he. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me. I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior.” (Isaiah 43:10,11—NIV)
There is a great deal said in the Christian churches about “witnessing.” Actually, what is meant is preaching to others, telling them about the salvation that is in Jesus Christ.
However, true witnessing occurs when we know and believe Christ. God alone makes witnesses of Himself. I think it requires quite a long period of time before we bear witness as God intends.
When we go through the waters and not drown, then we can testify of that. When we pass through the flames and are not destroyed, then we can testify of that. Many experiences through the years teach us about God’s faithfulness. We then can bear witness of His faithfulness. Isn’t it so?
So preaching and personal evangelism are one thing. Witnessing is something else. There is a great deal of preaching in America in our day; but the witness being given is not always a true representation of God, his Person, his ways, his will, and his eternal purpose in Christ. Would you agree to that?
Even from eternity I am He, and there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it? (Isaiah 43:13—NASB)
There is so much unrest among nations in our day. But we have no need to fear. No one can deliver from God’s hand those appointed to judgment. If we are serving the Lord Jesus, God will keep us safe from those who would harm us.
The nations will scheme and rage. But all of this uproar is the pains of birth as the Kingdom of God and the new world of righteousness are ready to be brought forth. We have no need to fear the boastings and threats of evil men. They soon shall be brought down to nothing.
However, if we are to be safe during these terrible days, and to be able to help our loved ones and friends, we must—we absolutely must!—learn to live by the Life of Jesus. Again I say, we must live by the life of Jesus. It must be said of us that we are living no longer but it is Christ who is living in us.
We can learn to live by the Life of Jesus, but we must continually ask the Lord to help us do this.
I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (Galatians 2:20—NASB)
(“The Servant of the Lord”, 3460-1)