The Gospel According to Isaiah 53, edited by Darrell L. Bock and Mitch Glaser, is a collection of essays from different authors, each exploring a different aspect concerning Isaiah 53. The book’s purpose was a surprise. “This book, The Gospel according to Isaiah 53, was written to help readers to utilize the truths of this magnificent chapter in bringing the Good News to those who do not yet know Jesus. It is designed to enable pastors and lay leaders to deepen their understanding of Isaiah 53 and to better equip the saints for ministry among the Jewish people” (p. 21). The book further declares, “The Gospel According to Isaiah 53 grows out of the desire of Chosen People Ministries, a mission to the Jewish people, to equip fellow believers for the task of Jewish evangelism” (p. 21). The introduction clearly sets the tone that these essays are intended to deepen the reader’s knowledge of this prophecy so the reader will share its gospel message to those who do not accept Jesus to be the prophesied Christ.
The essays are scholarly and quite valuable. As a minister I found the essay, “Jewish Interpretations of Isaiah 53” to be very useful for understanding how various rabbis and Jewish commentators have dealt with this prophecy. There are three essays that explore the New Testament usage of Isaiah 53. There are also many useful essays for the preacher, including “Preaching Isaiah 53” and “Using Isaiah 53 in Jewish Evangelism.” The appendix also contains two sermons from Isaiah 53.
The Gospel According to Isaiah 53 finds its place as an excellent resource for consulting when studying, teaching, or preaching Isaiah 53. It is not an easy read of the gospel message from Isaiah. The book intends to plumb the depths of this great prophecy, exploring every question, difficulty, and interpretation. If you are looking for a scholarly resource on Isaiah 53 with an evangelistic aim, this book is strongly recommended for you. I look forward to using this resource to teach a fuller, deeper gospel message from Isaiah 53.
*This book was provided to me free of charge from Kregel in exchange for an unbiased, honest review.