Jehovah/Jesus’ Atonement for Transgression

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Anticipating Israel’s rejection of him—without which his sacrifice for sin would not have been complete—Jehovah provided foreshadowings of his earthly ministry. These include Isaac, Abraham’s only-begotten son by Sarah, whom his father offered up as a sacrifice (Genesis 22:9–12; Hebrews 11:17); Joseph in Egypt, who saved his brothers who had sold him (Genesis 45:1–7); Job, whom his friends falsely accused, but who prayed for them and turned away God’s wrath (Job 42:7–10); the Passover Lamb, which served as a proxy sacrifice for Israel’s firstborn sons (Exodus 12:1–13); the scapegoat, which bore the sins and iniquities of the people (Leviticus 16:21–22); animal sacrifice in general, which portended the unblemished sacrifice of the Lamb of God (Leviticus 1:1–17; Isaiah 53:7; John 1:29); and the brazen serpent in the wilderness, through which persons bitten by poisonous snakes were healed when they exercised enough faith to look upon it (Numbers 21:4–9; Helaman 8:14–15).

Did not Zechariah predict that the house of David would “look upon me whom they have pierced, and mourn for him as one mourns for his only son, and be in bitterness for him as one who is in bitterness for his firstborn” at some point after he had been “wounded in the house of his friends” (Zechariah 12:10; 13:6; Doctrine & Covenants 45:51–53)? Would Jehovah thus compare himself to an “only son” and a “firstborn” of his people if he never was one? Jesus addressed this: “When the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, ‘What think you of Messiah? Whose son is he?’ They said to him, ‘[The son] of David.’ He said to them, ‘How then does David in spirit call him Lord, saying, “The Lord said to my Lord, ‘Sit on my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool?’” [Psalm 110:1]. If David then calls him Lord, how is he his son?’ And no man was able to answer him a word, neither dared anyone from that day forth ask him any more questions” (Matthew 22:41–46).

And didn’t Jesus, when dying, utter the first line of David’s psalm, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1) as he suffered the curses of his people’s transgressions and the consequences of their being forsaken of God? The same prophecy adds, “You have brought me into the dust of death. For dogs surround me, a mob of evildoers encompasses me. They pierce my hands and feet. I can number all my bones. They stare and gaze at me. They part my garments among them and cast lots for my vesture” (Psalm 22:15–18)? Surely, Jesus fulfilled these very things: “The soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part. And also his coat. Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, ‘Let us not rend it but cast lots for it whose it shall be’—that the scripture might be fulfilled, which says, ‘They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they cast lots’” (John 19:23–24).

David’s prophecy, however, shows that in the end his God does not forsake the suffering person but that his afflictions beget covenant blessings for all of humanity, past, present, and future: “He has not despised nor abhorred the afflictions of the oppressed one, neither has he hidden his face from him. But when he called upon him, he heard him. . . . The meek shall eat and be satisfied, and those who seek Jehovah will praise him. He will revive your hearts forever. All the ends of the world will remember and turn to Jehovah, and all kindreds of the nations will worship before you. For the kingdom is Jehovah’s. He governs among the nations. All who are rich from the earth will eat and worship. All who go down into the dust will bow before him, for no one can keep alive his own soul. Offspring will serve him, and it shall be accounted to my Lord for a generation. They will come and declare his righteousness to a people yet unborn—that he has accomplished this” (Psalm 22:24, 26–31; cf. Isaiah 12:4–5).

(Taken from Endtime Prophecy: A Judeo-Mormon Analysis, pp. 261–263.)

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The Isaiah Institute was created in the year 2000 by the Hebraeus Foundation to disseminate the message of the prophet Isaiah (circa 742–701 B.C.). Avraham Gileadi Ph.D’s groundbreaking research and analysis of the Book of Isaiah provides the ideal medium for publishing Isaiah’s endtime message to the world. No longer can the Book of Isaiah be regarded as an obscure document from a remote age. Its vibrant message, decoded after years of painstaking research by a leading authority in his field, now receives a new application as a sure guide to a rapidly changing world. To those who seek answers to today’s perplexing questions, the Book of Isaiah is God’s gift to humanity.

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