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Sermon #2167[i]                                                        — Miscellaneous Sermons


      Title:                                             The Sufferings

and the Glory of Christ


      Text:                      1 Peter 1:11

      Subject:   The Sufferings of Christ as our Substitute



(1 Peter 1:1-11) “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, (2) Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. (3) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (4) To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, (5) Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (6) Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: (7) That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: (8) Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: (9) Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. (10) Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: (11) Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.”


The sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow” — What an astounding thought! — “The sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” That is my subject. If God the Holy Ghost will enable me to do so, I want to talk to you for a little while about — The Sufferings and the Glory of Christ. O Holy Spirit, enable me to preach as only you can! As you taught the hands of David to war, my God, teach my lips to preach this hour, for Christ’s sake! — “The sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” It is a subject infinitely bigger than my puny brain and infinitely more important than we can imagine. Yet, no subject can be more practical and beneficial to our souls, if the Spirit of God will be pleased to bless it to that end. — The Sufferings and the Glory of Christ. It is a subject of infinite depths, about which I can only speak a little; but I am compelled, I hope by God the Holy Spirit, to tell you what the Lord has stamped upon my heart.


The Sufferings of Christ


First, I want to talk to you about “the sufferings of Christ.” Turn with me to the Gospel of Isaiah, chapter 53. In our text Peter tells us that God’s prophets in the Old Testament “testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ;” and none “testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ” more clearly than Isaiah did in Isaiah 53. I want to show you what I can of the sufferings of His body, the sufferings of His heart and the sufferings of His soul, when He endured the wrath of God for us as our Substitute.


I do not know what hell is, or where hell is; but I do know this: — This Book talks about a place, a state of existence called hell. In that horrid, horrid place men and women will suffer the infinite wrath of God forever in their bodies, in their hearts, and in their souls.

  • Your heart is enmity against God.
  • Your body is the instrument by which you live in defiance of the Almighty.
  • And in your very soul you have despised Him.

Therefore, as you sin with your body, sin in your heart, and sin in your soul, you must suffer the wrath of God forever in hell, in your body, in your heart, and in your soul, unless you repent and trust the Son of God as your only and all-sufficient Lord and Savior.


Now, understand this: —— In order to redeem and save His people from their sins, it was necessary for the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, to suffer all the fury and terror of God’s holy and horrid wrath against us in His body, in His heart, and in His soul. That is what Isaiah describes for us in this fifty-third chapter. Isaiah 53 is quoted more often in the New Testament than any other portion of the Old Testament. Here the Son of God is set forth as the sinners’ Substitute, making atonement for our sins by the sacrifice of Himself.


It is hard to believe that this incomparable prophecy was written by a man who lived 750 years before Christ came into this world. Nothing can explain the existence of this prophecy, except the words of the apostle Peter: — “Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” I defy those infidels who deny the inspiration of Holy Scripture, who deny that this Book is the very Word of God, to explain the existence of Isaiah 53. As you read the words of this chapter, you might almost think you are reading the eyewitness report of a man who was standing by when the Son of God died upon the cursed tree. But these are the words of a man who lived almost a millennium beforehand! Isaiah, the prophet of God, wrote of the sin-atoning death of the Lord Jesus Christ, and did so with precise detail and accuracy, because God the Holy Spirit inspired, breathed out, the words as he wrote them. Nothing else can explain this prophecy.


Proposition: In order to redeem and save His chosen people, the Son of God had to suffer all the consequences of our sins to the full satisfaction of divine justice as our Substitute, in His body, in His heart, and in His soul.


That is what I want to talk to you about now. May God the Holy Spirit speak by me through His Word to your hearts for the glory of Him of whom I now speak.



(Isaiah 52:14)


The chapter division between Isaiah 52 and 53 is very unfortunate. Whenever you read Isaiah 53, you should always begin with chapter 52 at verse 13. Read verses 13 and 14 with me.


(Isaiah 52:13-14) “Behold, my Servant shall deal prudently, He shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. As many were astonied at Thee; His visage was so marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men.”


No man can read of the sufferings of Christ and not be astonished, astonished that any man could inflict such cruel barbarity upon another, or that any man could endure such agony. And when we realize that the One who suffered on that day of all days was and is the holy, immaculate Son of God in human flesh, we are all the more astonished!


Ever remember that the sufferer Isaiah here describes is both God and man. Our Savior had to be a man. Otherwise, His sufferings would be of no benefit to man. Man had sinned. So man must suffer. Man had sinned. So man must die. — It is no easy thing to put away sin!

·      No animal sacrifice would do. — Hebrews 10:4 states that fact very clearly. — “It is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.

·      No angelic substitute would do.

·      Only an innocent, holy man could be our Redeemer.


But the man who redeems us must also be God. Else His sufferings and death could not have satisfied the infinite justice of God. — God could not suffer, and man could not satisfy; but the God-man both suffered and satisfied.


Not all the blood of beasts,

On Jewish altars slain,

Could give the guilty conscience peace,

Or wash away the stain.


But Christ the heav’nly Lamb

Takes all our sins away,

A sacrifice of richer name

And nobler blood than they!


Without question, many place too much emphasis upon the physical, bodily sufferings of Christ, trying to get people to feel sorry for “poor Jesus.” Clearly, that is not my object. Our Lord Jesus Christ did not die as the helpless victim of circumstances. He is the God of circumstances! Let us weep for the sins that made His death necessary. But He does not need or desire our pity. In fact, He plainly said, — “Weep not for Me, but for yourselves, and for your children.”


Yet, we must never look upon our Lord’s physical, bodily sufferings as a matter of insignificance. The Word of God records the physical, bodily sufferings of Christ in great detail in all four Gospel narratives, in several of the Psalms, and here in Isaiah 53, as well as in numerous other passages of the Old and New Testaments. Here Isaiah tells us what our Savior suffered for us. In Psalm 22 David tells us what He said as He suffered the wrath of God for us. These things are recorded by Divine inspiration for our learning and edification because it is important for us to know what the Son of God suffered for us at Calvary.


On the night of the Passover supper, when our dear Savior instituted what we call the Lord’s Supper, breaking bread, drinking wine, praying, and singing with His disciples, an all night vigil began.

·      The Supper was followed by our Lord’s last discourse (John 14, 15, 16).

·      Then came His great high priestly prayer (John 17).


Our Lord Jesus said to His disciples, “Because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart” (John 16:6). “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again to receive you unto Myself, that where I am there ye may be also” (John 14:1-3). Then, the story continues. We piece it together from the accounts of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

·      The Arrest in Gethsemane

·      The Arraignment before Annas, then before Caiaphas, then before Sanhedrin

·      Next, the Lord Jesus was taken by Roman soldiers to Pontius Pilate.

·      Pilate sent Him to Herod, the ruler of Galilee.

·      Herod sent Him back to Pilate, the Governor of Judea.

·      At last, Pilate condemned the Son of God to be crucified, and gave Him into the hands of cruel, barbaric Roman soldiers.“Pilate delivered Jesus to their will” (Luke 23:25). — The Mockery — The Beatings — The Infamous Parade — The Crucifixion at Calvary — The Place of the Skull — Jerusalem’s Garbage Dump!


The scene at Calvary was so horribly ignominious and painful that as He hung upon the cross, our Lord said to John, “Take my mother away.” His sufferings and death were hidden from His mother. The sun refused to shine, hiding the infamy from the earth. And God the Father refused to look upon the horrid scene!

·      “I thirst!”

·      The Vinegar and Myrrh

·      The Burning Fever

·      The Excruciating Pain


Let us never speak lightly of the sufferings of our Savior in His body! But there is much more. Isaiah also talks about...



(Isaiah 53:3)


(Isaiah 53:3) “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.”


Our Lord was outcast by men, betrayed by His friend, denied by His disciple, forsaken by His companions, tortured and nailed to the cursed tree; but He cried “reproach hath broken my heart” (Psalm 69:20), and that heart was broken for me. I want to know something about that too. I want to know my Savior “in the fellowship of his sufferings!”


“He was despised and rejected of men” (John 1:11).

·      His Own Countrymen!

·      His Own Brethren!

There was no room for the Son of God in the inn, in the streets of this world, in their temple, or in their world. There was plenty of room for His miracles, but none for Him; plenty of room for His acts of mercy, but none for His doctrine!


“A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.”

·      His Trials and Temptations.

·      The Slanders of Men.

·      The Unbelief of His Disciples.

·      The Souls of Men — “Moved with compassion.”

·      The Sorrows of His Friends — “Jesus wept!”


Behold our Savior in Gethsemane and hear His cries, as He anticipated, being made sin for us. — O the heart breaking anticipation of Gethsemane! “If it be possible, let this cup pass from me.”


After His arrest in Gethsemane, the blessed Son of God endured the cruel mockery of the soldiers!

·      The Crown of Thorns

·      The Purple Robe

·      The Reed Scepter

·      The Jeering Taunts


The Lord of Glory became the song of the drunkards and harlots — the spit! Don’t ever imagine that words do not hurt. If they hurt the Son of God, they hurt us far lesser men.


Then He endured the denial by Peter and the forsaking disciples!

·      “We hid, as it were, our faces from Him!”

·      The margin reads, “He hid as it were His face from us!”


“He was despised, and we esteemed Him not!” — The Son of God suffered all this for us. Yet, we who now believe once esteemed Him not. — “We esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted!” Had He not Himself given us faith, we would forever have esteemed Him not!


            Illustrations: The Scarred Mother.

                                                                                                “My Daddy died for me.”


All these things tormented our Savior’s heart. Yet, even when His heart broke with reproach and shame for us, His heart was upon us (Psalm 69:6-9; 11-12, 14-20).


(Psalms 69:6-9) “Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord GOD of hosts, be ashamed for My sake: let not those that seek thee be confounded for My sake, O God of Israel. (7) Because for Thy sake I have borne reproach; shame hath covered My face. (8) I am become a stranger unto My brethren, and an alien unto My mother’s children. (9) For the zeal of Thine house hath eaten Me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached Thee are fallen upon Me.”


(Psalms 69:11-12) “I made sackcloth also My garment; and I became a proverb to them. (12) They that sit in the gate speak against Me; and I was the song of the drunkards.”


(Psalms 69:14-20) “Deliver Me out of the mire, and let Me not sink: let Me be delivered from them that hate Me, and out of the deep waters. (15) Let not the waterflood overflow Me, neither let the deep swallow Me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon Me. (16) Hear Me, O LORD; for Thy lovingkindness is good: turn unto Me according to the multitude of Thy tender mercies. (17) And hide not Thy face from Thy Servant; for I am in trouble: hear Me speedily. (18) Draw nigh unto My soul, and redeem it: deliver Me because of Mine enemies. (19) Thou hast known My reproach, and My shame, and My dishonour: Mine adversaries are all before Thee. (20) Reproach hath broken My heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.”


Still, there is more. Isaiah also speaks of...



(Isaiah 53:10-11)


(Isaiah 53:10-11) “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him; He hath put Him to grief: when Thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in His hand. (11) He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities.”


I understand the biblical doctrine of the atonement.

·      The Sin Offering

·      The Paschal Lamb.

·      The Prepared Body (Hebrews 10:1-14).


“Without the shedding of blood there is no remission,” not because God is vengeful and cruel, but because he is good, righteous, holy, and just.


I understand the agony of our Savior’s tormented body. I can even understand the torments of His broken heart to some degree. But here, we have come to something I simply cannot comprehend — The sufferings of our Savior’s holy soul (Isaiah 53:10-11).


(Isaiah 53:10-11) “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him; He hath put Him to grief: when Thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in His hand. (11) He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities.”


“Much we talk of Jesus’ blood,

But how little’s understood!

Of His sufferings so intense

Angels have no perfect sense.


Who can rightly comprehend

Their beginning or their end?

`Tis to God and God alone

That their weight is fully known.


See the suffering Son of God —

Panting, groaning, sweating blood!

Boundless depths of love Divine!

Jesus, what a love was Thine!”


The Son of God was made sin for us! Our sins were imputed to the Son of God! That fact in itself is overwhelming. But I am certain that there is more to the sufferings of our Lord for us than the mere legal, or forensic term “imputation” implies. His heart was not broken simply because He was made to be legally responsible for the debt of our sins. Our sins were not pasted on Him, or merely placed to His account. The Lord Jesus Christ was “made sin for us!

·      When He was made to be sin for us, the Lord God made His soul an offering for sin! — Substitution!

·      When our Savior was most perfectly obedient to God as our Representative, His Father forsook Him!


Martin Luther — “God forsaken of God, my God, no man can understand that!”


At last the sword of justice, awakened in all the fury of God’s holy wrath, plunged itself into the Lamb of God, and “Christ died for our sins!


“In evil long I took delight,

Unawed by shame or fear,

‘Til a new object struck my sight,

And stopped my wild career.


I saw One hanging on a tree

In agonies and blood

Who fixed His languid eyes on me,

As near His cross I stood.


Sure never till my latest breath

Can I forget that look.

It seemed to charge me with His death,

Though not a word He spoke.


A second look He gave, which said,

‘I freely all forgive.

This blood is for thy ransom paid.

I die that thou mayest live.”


Thus, while His death my sin displays

In all its blackest hue,

(Such is the mystery of His grace),

It seals my pardon too.


With pleasing grief and mournful joy

My spirit now is filled,

That I should such a life destroy,

Yet live by Him I killed.”


The Glory of Christ


I have told you all that I can about “the sufferings of Christ.” Keep your Bible open at Isaiah 53, and let me tell you a little bit about the glory of Christ, what Peter calls “the glory that should follow.” Actually, the word “glory” in 1 Peter 1:11 is in the plural. The text should read, “the sufferings of Christ and the glories that should follow.” The prophets testified of that, too. And Isaiah 53 speaks plainly of the glories that must follow our Savior’s sufferings.


1.    “He shall see His seed.”

·      Redeemed

·      Justified

·      Sanctified — Regenerated

·      Glorified


(Hebrews 12:1-2) “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (2) Looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”


2.    “He shall prolong His days.”That is to say, He shall live again!

3.    “The pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.”


(John 17:2) “As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.”


(Revelation 10:1-3) “And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: (2) And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, (3) And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.”


4.    “He (God the Father) shall see of the travail of His soul and shall be satisfied!” The Father’s justice is satisfied by the Son’s sufferings unto death for the salvation of his people.

5.    “He (the Lord Jesus Christ) shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied.” The cross of Christ shall never be discovered a miscarriage!

6.    “By His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many, for He shall bear their iniquities.”




1. Why did the Son of God suffer all this agony of body, of heart, and of soul?

·      To Satisfy Divine Justice!

·      To Put Away Our Sins!

·      Because He Loved Us!


2. Will you yet hide your face from Him, despise Him, and esteem Him not? — If you now look to Him and trust Him, Jesus Christ suffered all this for you! God help you to trust His darling Son! I wish I could convince you just how willing God is to save sinners for Christ’s sake.


Illustrations: The Indian Leper — “Help me! Help me! Somebody, please, help me!”

                                                                                    The Handkerchief


3. In the light of these things, I have some questions for you, my brothers and sisters in Christ, and for me...

·      Is anything too much for us to suffer for Christ?

·      Is any sacrifice too great for us to make for Him?

·      Is any devotion to the Son of God extreme?


When I survey the wondrous Cross

On which the Prince of Glory died,

My richest gain I count but loss,

And pour contempt on all my pride.


Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast

Save in the death of Christ, my God;

All the vain things that charm me most,

I sacrifice them to his blood.


See from His head, His hands, His feet,

Sorrow and love flow mingled down;

Did e’er such love and sorrow meet?

Or thorns compose so rich a crown?


His dying crimson like a robe

Spreads o’er His body on the tree,

Then am I dead to all the globe,

And all the globe is dead to me.


Were the whole realm of nature mine,

That were a present far too small;

Love so amazing, so divine,

Demands my soul, my life, my all!




Alas! and did my Savior bleed

And did my Sovereign die?

Would He de-vote that sacred Head

For such a worm as I?


Was it for crimes that I have done

He groaned upon the tree?

Amazing pity! Grace un-known!

And love beyond degree!


Well might the sun in dark-ness hide

And shut his glories in,

When God, the mighty Maker died

For man the creature’s sin.


Thus might I hide my blushing face

While His dear cross appears,

Dissolve my heart in thankfulness,

And melt mine eyes to tears.


But drops of grief can ne’er re-pay

The debt of love I owe:

Here, Lord, I give myself away —

‘Tis all that I can do!


(Romans 12:1)I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”






Don Fortner








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[i]    Danville — Sunday Morning — November 18, 2007

      Covenant of Grace Baptist Church, N. Wilkesboro, NC (THU 08/14/08)

      Grace Baptist Church, Dingess, WV — (FRI 09/12/08)

     Grace Bible Church, San Leandro, CA — (SUN 10/12/08)

      West Ham Baptist Tabernacle, London, ENG — (SUN 10/27/13)

      Buck Mountain Baptist Church, Roan Mountain, TN — (06/25/14)

      San Diego Grace Church, San Diego, CA — (07/02/14)


      Reading: 1 Peter 1:1-25