Chapter Four

Prophecies Of His Suffering

We will be looking at scriptures in this chapter that speak and foretell the sufferings Jesus endured. His sufferings were prophesied beforehand in the Old Testament, and the New Testament writers made many references to Old Testament Prophecies of Jesus including his sufferings. Jesus himself made references to Old Testament Prophecies of himself, and here are a couple of scriptures from the Gospel of Luke, where Jesus comments about Old Testament Prophecies of himself.

Luke 24:25-27 "Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself."

Luke 24:44-47 "And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."

Peter says in Acts 3:18 "But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled."

Paul reasons from Old Testament scriptures concerning Christ. Acts 17:2,3 "And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days, reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ." See also Acts 26:22,23.

Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered is prophesied in Zechariah 13:7. Jesus quotes from Zechariah 13:7 in Matthew 26:31, Mark 14:27, and John 16:32. Jesus applies this prophecy to his disciples, who cowardly ran and were scattered, when the authorities arrested Jesus, and "smite the shepherd" pertains to Jesus Christ.

Zechariah 13:7 "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones." Notice in this prophecy that the Lord refers to his shepherd as "the man that is my fellow" This implies that the shepherd (Jesus) is equal to the Lord of host who is speaking here. He is equal to God, and strongly reveals the deity of Jesus Christ. The Lord of host himself referring to Jesus as the man who is his fellow several hundred years before Jesus was born.

Matthew 26:31 "Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad." Jesus was abandoned by his disciples when he was arrested, and he was left alone to suffer his humiliation. See John 16:32.

The next prophecy was already given in chapter two, but it fits in with the context of his suffering, and I believe this chapter would be incomplete without it, so I will give it again, so the reader can understand the full impact of his suffering.

Isaiah 50:6 "I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting."

Lamentations 3:30 "He giveth his cheek to him that smiteth him: he is filled full with reproach."

Micah 5:1 "....they shall smite the judge of Israel with a rod upon the cheek." This prophecy in Micah 5:1 is given in the same context as Micah 5:2, which is the verse that follows it, and Micah 5:2 was quoted in Matthew 2:6 as pertaining to the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. Micah 5:2 was also given in earlier chapters. Jesus Christ will be the Judge of Israel in the end, and many believe this to be a prophecy of Jesus.

Matthew 27:29-32 "And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head. And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him."

Luke 22:63-65 "And the men that held Jesus mocked him, and smote him. And when they had blindfolded him, they struck him on the face, and asked him, saying, Prophesy, who is it that smote thee? And many other things blasphemously spake they against him." See also Matthew 26:67 and Mark 14:65

We should also remember Isaiah 52:14, which was already given in chapter two, and prophesies that his visage (appearance) was marred (disfigured) more than any man. Remember that this implies he was beaten beyond recognition at the hands of Pilot’s soldiers, while being whipped harshly with a whip which had a steel ball with spikes on it, which would rip his flesh to threads as he was being whipped.

The Old Testament Prophets for sure wrote beforehand the sufferings of Jesus Christ, but we should remember that it was the Spirit of Christ in these prophets who revealed the future sufferings of Jesus Christ to them. We should consider what David said on his death bed in 2 Samuel 23:2 "The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and his word was in my tongue." Many of the Old Testament Prophecies of the sufferings of Jesus Christ were written in the Psalms, and David wrote many of the Psalms. David was very close to the Lord., and he delighted in his word. It is written in 1 Samuel 13:14 and Acts 13:22 that David was a man after God’s own heart.

It was the Spirit of Christ who spoke through David in many of the Psalms. Remember that the Spirit of Christ is not subject to time. The Spirit of Christ could feel the sufferings of David, but also feel the sufferings of Jesus Christ, which did not happen until a thousand years later, because all time is as the same time to the Spirit of Christ. Many of the Psalms David wrote reflect the sufferings of David, but also reflect the sufferings of Jesus a thousand years later. We can see the Spirit of Christ echoing through David the suffering of Jesus a thousand years beforehand. Psalm 22:16 "For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet." The phrase "they pierced my hand and feet" could only apply to Jesus on the cross, because nailing the hands and feet to a cross was a form of crucifixion which was not practiced until later on in history during the Roman empire. This kind of crucifixion did not happen in David’s time. It cannot apply to David, because David never had his hands and feet pierced.

Zechariah was another prophet who lived hundreds of years before Jesus was born. We can see the Spirit of Christ referring to himself, saying "and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced" in Zechariah 12:10. Zechariah 12:10 "And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: And they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn." Revelation 1:7 referring to the return of Jesus Christ says "Behold, he cometh with clouds, and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen."

Thomas was one of the disciples of Jesus, and Thomas witnessed the crucifixion of Jesus his Lord, and Thomas witnessed his hands and feet being pierced with nails on the cross, but Thomas was not with the other disciples when Jesus had revealed himself to them after his resurrection, so Thomas had a hard time believing the other disciples, when they told him they had seen Jesus risen from the dead. Thomas made this statement to the other disciples in John 20:25 "Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe." Jesus appeared to the disciples eight days later, and here are the words Jesus said to Thomas in John 20:27 "Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing." Thomas then replied "My Lord and my God". Then Jesus said to Thomas "Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed." Thomas now believed that Jesus had risen from the dead, because he put his hands in the wounds in Jesus hands and side. I wonder how many today believe in the resurrection of Jesus.

John 19:34 and then skipping to John 19:37 says this "But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there blood and water...... And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced."

We can see the Spirit of Christ echoing the sufferings of Jesus in numerous places in the Psalms. The Psalms which were written a thousand years before Jesus was born, so we see the Spirit of Christ echoing through time the agony and humiliation Jesus suffered on the cross. Psalm 22:7,8 "All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, he trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him." This is exactly what happened at the cross of Jesus a thousand years later. Matthew 27:39-43 "And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, and saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross. Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God." The people mocking him at the cross didn’t understand that Jesus went to the cross willingly. Jesus said in Matthew 26:53 he could have had twelve legions of Angels rescue him if he wanted to, but Jesus was there to give himself up as the offering for sin. He was on the cross so the people mocking him could receive salvation from God. These people mocking him wouldn’t have any hope for salvation if he did come down off the cross, and neither would any of us today have hope of salvation if he did. These people should have been praising him, and so should we.

Psalm 69:21 "They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." This prophecy was fulfilled at the cross in Matthew 27:34 and Matthew 27:48. Matthew 27:34 "They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink. Matthew 27:48 "And straightway one of them ran, and took a sponge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink."

Psalm 34:20 "He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken." This prophecy was fulfilled in John 19:32,33 and skip to verse 36. "Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him, but when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs:....For these things were done, that scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken."

The interesting thing about his bones not being broken is that the legs of everyone that was crucified during the Roman empire were always broken. It was a very strange thing that his legs were not broken, so Jesus was an exception to the rule. Jesus was also the Lamb of God, and he was crucified during passover week. Passover week was a time the Jews celebrated once a year to remember the day when the Lord smited the first born of all the families of Egypt, and instructed Moses to have all the Israelites take the blood of a male lamb without blemish, and paint the door post of all their houses with the blood of the lamb. The Lord would then pass over all the houses of Israel when he had smitten all the first born of Egypt. This was the last plague God brought upon Egypt, and the Pharoh of Egypt ordered Moses to take the Israelites out of the land of Egypt. This event is remembered as the passover, when God passed over the houses of the Israelites with their door post painted with lamb’s blood, sparing the first born of Israel, while smiting the first born of Egypt. This was also the event that freed the Israelites from bondage to Egypt after being slaves in Egypt over four hundred years. It’s recorded in Exodus chapters eleven and twelve. God also commanded them not to break the bones of the lamb in Exodus 12:46 and Numbers 9:12. The passover lamb was a for shadow of Jesus, who was the Lamb of God, who was slain on the cross during passover week, so God did not allow his bones to be broken liken the passover lamb in Exodus 12:46. See also Psalm 22:17

Psalm 38:10,11 "My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me. My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off."

Matthew 27:55,56 "And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him: Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children."

Psalm 22:18 "They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture." This prophecy was fulfilled in Matthew 27:35 "And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots." See also Mark 15:24 and Luke 23:34.

Psalm 22:1 "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" This is exactly what Jesus cried out at the cross a thousand years later in Matthew 27:46 "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" See also Mark 15:34 This prophecy in Psalm 22:1 is well regarded as the "Cry" or "Echo" of the Messiah (Jesus Christ), as he cries from the cross echoing through time through the voice of David "My God, My God, Why hast thou forsaken me?"

Jesus suffered a horrible and cruel crucifixion, but he also suffered through much humiliation as he hung on the cross naked in front of his mother and friends. The most agonizing thing he suffered was feeling forsaken by and separated from his Father in heaven, because our sins were laid upon him, and it was our sins his Father in heaven saw as Jesus hung on the cross. He suffered through these things so we would not have to suffer the penalty of our sins. He suffered and died for you and me, so we could have peace with our Father in heaven. He suffered so we could be reconciled to our Creator, and our eternal relationship with him could be restored. This was God’s salvation plan for us, which was prophesied in Isaiah chapter 53 given in chapter two of this book.

John 19:30 "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost." The last words of Jesus before he died was "It is finished." His crucifixion and suffering were finished, but we can also interpret the word finished as complete. His work was finished or his work was complete. He had actually finished or completed his salvation plan for us. Our salvation was completed or completely paid for. His purpose for going to the cross willingly was to die for our sins, so his purpose regarding our salvation was complete. It was a finished deal.

It should be pointed out that his salvation plan is only effective for those who receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. He died for all, and his salvation is offered to all, but only those who receive him shall receive it. Those who reject him are actually rejecting the Lord’s salvation plan for them. Therefore they shall not receive salvation, because they have rejected it by rejecting the one who died for their salvation. The Father in heaven loves his Son Jesus very much, and he sent his Son here for this purpose, so those who reject Jesus Christ will reap the judgment of God, and scripture makes this very clear.

John 12:48 "He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him the last day."

John 3:18 "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not belived in the name of the only begotten Son of God."

John 3:36 "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him."

John 8:24 "I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins."

The death of Jesus on the cross was surely prophesied beforehand in Old Testament scriptures, but his resurrection from death was also prophesied in Old Testament scriptures. Remember what is written in Isaiah 53:10, where we read the words "he shall prolong his days." This strongly indicates that God would prolong his days by raising Jesus from the dead. Paul refers to the resurrection of Jesus in Acts 13:34, and he continues in verse 35 to quote Psalm 16:10 as a prophecy of the resurrection of Jesus. Peter also refers to Psalm 16:10 in Acts 2:31 as pertaining to the resurrection of Jesus.

Psalm 16:10 "For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." The word hell should be translated grave in this prophecy. The body of Jesus was laid in a tomb, which was his grave. We once again see the Spirit of Christ echoing through time saying "Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell(grave)" This can only be applied to Jesus Christ, because he is referred to as God’s Holy one in this prophecy. Jesus is the only Holy One who ever lived among men. Jesus was without sin and blameless. Scripture says that none of us are righteous, and we all have sinned, so Jesus is the only one who qualifies as God’s Holy One, because he was and still is Holy.

Acts 13:34,35 "And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, and he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David. Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption."

Acts 2:31,32 "He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses."

Jesus was risen from the dead as Old Testament scriptures prophesied he would be, and Acts 1:3 says he showed himself alive by many infallible proofs for a period of forty days. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:6 that he was seen by over five hundred brethren at once. His resurrection was recorded in all four Gospels, and all of them without contradiction. This was not the over imagination or work of deception by his disciples. He was seen alive by over five hundred brethren at one time. His disciples were also cowards who fled and were scattered when the authorities arrested Jesus. This means they fled with fear at a time they all believed he was their Messiah. These same cowardly disciples became courageous martyrs of Jesus Christ after his resurrection. It would not make sense that these cowardly disciples would become so courageous if Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, because their spirits would have been crushed at his crucifixion. They all believed he was the Messiah until his crucifixion, but what would they have believed after his crucifixion if he didn’t raise from the dead? Their faith would have been shattered, and the odds these cowards becoming courageous with their faith shattered would be very unlikely. Something had to happen between the time he was crucified and the time these cowardly disciples became courageous martyrs later on. Something happened that restored their faith in their Messiah. Their faith was restored through the resurrection of their Messiah Jesus, which is recorded throughout the New Testament scriptures. It was the resurrection that changed them from cowards to courageous martyrs.

Acts 1:3 "To also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of them things pertaining to the kingdom of God:"

1 Corinthians 15:3-6 "For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was burried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, and then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep."

Jesus Christ was seen resurrected and alive by many people, but it should be pointed out that even some of his disciples didn’t believe he was alive until they actually had seen him alive. Thomas who is referred to as doubting Thomas didn’t believe until he put his hands in the wounds of Jesus. This made a believer out of Thomas. Something happened that changed Thomas from a doubting Thomas to a believing Thomas. He saw his Messiah alive with his own eyes, and touched his wounds with his own hands. This evident of the fact that Thomas had seen Jesus alive after his resurrection, and so did all the other disciples as well as over five hundred brethren at one time. There were enough witnesses to his resurrection to satisfy any court in the world today. It was common knowledge in apostolic times.

The Old Testament also prophesied and foretold that Jesus Christ would ascend into heaven. Paul quotes from Psalm 68:18 in Ephesians 4:8, and he applies it to the ascension of Jesus Christ. Paul is actually speaking about the gifts and grace Jesus would give unto men after his ascension. Jesus actually sent the Holy Spirit after he ascended, and I believe the gifts Jesus gave to men is the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Psalm 68:18 "Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the Lord God might dwell among them." I believe this prophecy is implying that Jesus received gifts for men when he ascended into heaven, which were gifts that he had just paid for on the cross. The very gift of our salvation comes quickly to my mind, but the anointed gifts of the Holy Spirit also come to my mind. Notice the phrase "that the Lord God might dwell among men" in this prophecy. This would imply the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in men. The gift of salvation is what reconciles with our Father in heaven, because our sins have been paid for at the cross, and they no longer separate us from God. God’s gift of grace is given to the repented sinner, and the forgiven sinner and God are reunited with the indewlling of the Holy Spirit.

Ephesians 4:7-10 "But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things."

I want to share a passage of scripture from the Psalm 24:7-10. I cannot say with all honesty that this is a prophecy referring to Jesus Christ. I have a hard time finding Bible commentaries or Bible Scholars who will say it is a Messianic prophecy of Jesus Christ, but I have known a few who have applied it to his ascension into heaven. I will ask the reader to not quote me as saying it is, because I just simply do not know the truth or facts about this scripture. This scripture is actually a song the ancient Israelites would sing. There is one truth about this scripture I can say in all honesty. It makes me think of the ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven every time I read it, because it refers to the King of Glory, and Jesus Christ would certainly qualify as the King of Glory, so I will share it with you.

Psalm 24:7-10 "Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. Who is this King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. Who is the King of Glory? The Lord of host, he is the King of Glory. Selah." I think of Jesus ascending into heaven every time I read this, because I picture the gates of heaven being lifted up as Jesus Christ came through them as the King of Glory! Christ also pre-existed in Old Testament times as the Lord of Host before his incarnation into the life and ministry of Jesus Christ, so perhaps it’s a song of his goings forth in times of old, which the last phrase in Micah 5:2 refers to. I have read this scripture for over thirty years, and I have pictured him ascending into heaven every time. I don’t have enough confidence to say it is a prophecy of his ascension, because I can’t find enough Scholars to say it is, so I urge the reader to check it out in various Bible commentaries for themselves. I will say that I would use words very similar to the words in that scripture, if I should ever write a song about the ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven. I will also leave the reader and any Bible Scholars who shall read this book with a simple little question, which is asked in the song written in Psalm 24:7-10. Who is the King of Glory, if he is not Jesus Christ?

This will conclude this chapter, but there are still many Old Testament prophecies of Jesus Christ. We will be looking at prophecies which refer to the offices Jesus held, and he also still holds. These three main offices are King, Priest, and Prophet. Remember that Jesus Christ means Jesus the Anointed One. Jesus was and is an anointed King, Priest, and Prophet. Acts 10:38 says Jesus was anointed with the Holy Ghost. This means he was anointed with the Spirit op God, so he was anointed with power and authority by God himself.

Acts 10:38 "How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him." We will be looking at a few Old Testament prophesies of the Spirit of God upon him regarding his anointing in the next chapter. We will also be looking a t a few other prophecies which will refer to him as being the seed of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Judah in chapter six, then prophecies of him being the seed of David in chapter seven. Chapter six will set the stage for his office as King, then we will look deeper into his office as King and the seed of David through prophecies in chapter seven. Remember that each of these offices require the anointing of God, and so we will first begin with those prophecies. The reader should understand that his authority and power in all these offices comes from the fact that he was anointed with the Spirit of God, and there is no higher authority than God himself. It simply means power and authority was given him by the Spirit of God in him or upon him.