God's Word For You is a free Bible Study site committed to bringing you studies firmly grounded in the Bible – the Word of God. Holding a reformed, conservative, evangelical perspective this site affirms that God has provided in Jesus Christ his eternal Son, a way of salvation in which we can live in his presence guilt free, acquitted and at peace.




Here and there in the Psalms we read of a ‘new song’ that either David sang, or that he commands us to sing [Psalms 33:3; 40:3; 96:1; 98:1; 144:9). In one way or another each of these anticipate the salvation that we have in the Lord Jesus Christ.

In Isaiah this singing, this joy, and this ‘new song’, follows his descriptive predictions of the Suffering Servant – whom we know as the Lord Jesus Christ.

In Isaiah 42:1 - 9, Isaiah describes this chosen Servant of God – his gentleness, humility and compassion, his faithfulness to God’s commission, and the worldwide purpose and impact of his saving mission. This suffering Servant is a ‘light for the Gentiles’, who liberates people from the blind darkness in which they live.

Having thus introduced us to Jesus Christ Isaiah commands us:

‘Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise to the ends of the earth’ – 42:10.

The whole earth – regardless of where people live – is exhorted to praise the Lord, to sing for joy, to give glory to the Lord because of the salvation that is accomplished by the Suffering Servant.

We read of this Suffering Servant again in Isaiah 49:1 – 12. Again we read of the transnational impact of his saving work – he is ‘a light for the Gentiles’ and brings God’s salvation ‘to the ends of the earth’. He liberates those captive in the darkness of unbelief or wrong belief. He satisfies completely. And in response to this great Saviour and this great salvation, Isaiah again exhorts us, and the physical universe:

‘Shout for joy, O heavens; rejoice, O earth; burst into song, O mountains!’ – 49:13.

After the third Servant Song (Isaiah 50) there is no call to sing, no call to joy. Only the deep grief of the Servant as his suffers, and the dread fate of those who reject him.

But after the fourth Servant Song, the call to singing and joy returns. Here in this song (52:13 – 53:12) the substitutionary, saving work of the Servant is most clearly expressed. Here we read of his rejection by God, his taking our place under the judgement of God – pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities, punished by God so that we may live in peace with God – as God laid upon him the iniquity of us all. Here we read that this was God’s will, God’s plan, that through the substitutionary suffering and mediation of Jesus Christ many are acquitted.

For this reason Isaiah, speaking for the Lord, tells us: ‘Sing ...burst into song, shout for joy’ – 54:1. Like a barren woman, we had no hope – no hope of reconciliation with God, no hope of escaping his just judgement. But now, because of the Suffering Servant, we can sing, we can shout, for joy.

We also find two references to the ‘new song’ in Revelation, both focused on the saving work of Jesus Christ:

In Revelation 5:9 – 14 we find twenty-four elders singing a new song:

‘You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals,
because you were slain,
and with your blood you purchased men for God
from every tribe and language and people and nation...’

And as we read through to these verses we see those elders joined by countless angels, and then by every creature in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing the praise of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, the Suffering Servant. And we hear the ‘four living creatures’ say ‘Amen!’

Then, in Revelation 14:1 – 5 we read of an over-powering sound issuing from heaven, like the roar of rushing waters and like a loud peal of thunder, like harpists playing on their harps: it is the sound of those who have been redeemed by the Lamb, those who follow the Lamb, singing in the presence of God a new song that only they can sing.

And this confronts each of us with a critical question: Am I there in the great multitude? Am I there in this immense crowd of redeemed people singing the praise of the Lamb? Do I have the right to sing the new song of the redeemed? Am I rejoicing with deep, over-powering joy because of the salvation I have in Christ? Or am I still wallowing in a pit of deep despair, striving by my own merit to gain acceptance with God?

The Suffering Servant has come, has suffered in your place, to redeem you – to set you free from the guilt, the condemnation and the just penalty of your sin: believe in him, embrace the gift of forgiveness he offers you, and sing this new song of joy.

© Rosemary Bardsley 2023