Isaiah 53:4

Hebrew Bible

1 Who would have believed what we just heard? When was the Lord’s power revealed through him? 2 He sprouted up like a twig before God, like a root out of parched soil; he had no stately form or majesty that might catch our attention, no special appearance that we should want to follow him. 3 He was despised and rejected by people, one who experienced pain and was acquainted with illness; people hid their faces from him; he was despised, and we considered him insignificant. 4 But he lifted up our illnesses, he carried our pain; even though we thought he was being punished, attacked by God, and afflicted for something he had done. 5 He was wounded because of our rebellious deeds, crushed because of our sins; he endured punishment that made us well; because of his wounds we have been healed. 6 All of us had wandered off like sheep; each of us had strayed off on his own path, but the Lord caused the sin of all of us to attack him.

4 Maccabees 6:29


24 When they saw that he was so courageous in the face of the afflictions, and that he had not been changed by their compassion, the guards brought him to the fire. 25 There they burned him with maliciously contrived instruments, threw him down, and poured stinking liquids into his nostrils. 26 When he was now burned to his very bones and about to expire, he lifted up his eyes to God and said, 27 "You know, O God, that though I might have saved myself, I am dying in burning torments for the sake of the law. 28 Be merciful to your people, and let our punishment suffice for them. 29 Make my blood their purification, and take my life in exchange for theirs." 30 After he said this, the holy man died nobly in his tortures; even in the tortures of death he resisted, by virtue of reason, for the sake of the law.

 Notes and References

"... There are a number of Intertexture references and influences underpinning elements of 1 Cor 4:6-13: (1) the ‘royal’ power of 1 Cor 4:8 alludes to the ‘royal’ power of Daniel 7:18, 21 and 27; the mention of scapegoat or ransom in 1 Cor 4:13 refers to similar themes in Proverbs 21:18, Tobit 5:19, Leviticus 16; and there are numerous allusions to Isaiah, especially Isa 52:13—53:12. It is also important to discuss Paul’s use of familial language. These will be investigated for their relevance to Paul’s argument in 1 Cor 4:9-13 (There may also be allusions to some pseudepigraphal books in 1 Cor 4:9-13, especially to Bel and the Dragon 31 (“sentenced/doomed to death”) and to 4 Maccabees 17:14 (“The tyrant was the opponent and the world and the human race were the spectators”). evpiqanati,ouj (‘sentenced/doomed to death’) in 1 Cor 4:9 is the only time that word is used in the New Testament: it is also used in the LXX version of Bel and the Dragon 31 where it is given the same meaning, namely, that ‘condemnation to death’ signifies that it is a public or cosmic spectacle. This interpretation is supported in 1 Cor 4:9) ..."

Mortell, Philip B. A Socio-rhetorical Interpretation of Paul’s Theology of Christian Suffering in 1 Corinthians (pp. 172-173) University of Limerick, 2020

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