Lesson 37: Why Do We Have Ears on the Outside of Our Heads? (50:4-51:8)

This week we are focusing on Isaiah 50:4-51:8. Words are extremely important! God spoke and all creation came into being. The longest chapter in the Bible speaks about His Word: Psalm 119. “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, [i.e. Jesus]…full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Keep this in mind as you study Isaiah this week. The following are some study suggestions to help you get started.


  1. Read through Isaiah 50:4-51:8.
  2. Meditate on and/or journal the answers to the following questions.
    1. What does this passage teach me about God and His character?
    2. How does this aspect of God’s character change my view of myself?
    3. What should I do in response?


  1. Read Isaiah 50:4-11, the third Servant song.
    1. Jot down all of the things you learn about the Servant. In what ways do you see Christ in these verses? (Here are a few cross references to get you thinking- Matt. 27:26-31; Phil. 2:8-11; Luke 9:51; 2 Thes. 1:6-9; Romans 8:31-35)
    2. According to Verses 10-11, in what ways do people respond to Christ, the Servant, and His message? (Note: It would be worth looking up the meaning of the word “darkness” (v.10) in a commentary. It should give you encouragement during times in your life when the light (God) doesn’t seem to be present!)
  2. Read Isaiah 51:1-8.
    1. Three times God calls His people to “listen” or “give attention” to Him. In each case, whom is God speaking to, and what is His message to them?
    2. Reminder! Jesus is the Word (John 1:1-5,14), and Jesus is the Truth (John 14:6)! Take some time to listen to Him today. If time permits, write out a prayer of thanksgiving for the many promises that God has fulfilled in Christ on your behalf.

GOING DEEPER (optional): For further teaching and application, do one or more of the following:

  • Read chapter 37, Why Do We Have Ears on the Outside of Our Heads? (50:4-51:8) in Isaiah: God Saves Sinners or listen to Ray Ortlund’s sermon series on line. (Most of the sermons correspond to the chapters in his book.)
  • Listen to the sermon(s) from Pastor Liam Goligher’s sermon series on Isaiah that go along with this week’s reading.