We join Jesus today as He confronts “the Jews” who questioned the man He just healed. The man didn’t initially know who had healed him and when first questioned stated so. But Jesus later meets up with him and he is given a name to take to “the Jews.”
I asked the question yesterday as to whether this man disclosing Jesus’ identity was a sin. When we look at Jesus’ interaction with those He was disclosed to, I’m certain it wasn’t. We know God’s plan regarding “the Jews” being the ones to reject and kill Jesus. He needed to provide them with the “ammunition” for their “witch hunt.”
Jesus wasn’t hiding when the man was first approached by “the Jews.” He was merely going about His business. Maybe He was offering healing to others also in need. He hung around the area, knowing that He would eventually be pointed out. He was ready for this confrontation. You could say He was spoiling for a good fight.
He starts out with equating Himself to God. He goes so far as to call Him His Father. Not Adonai but Abba. A personal relationship that is as close as can be. One a part of the other. One carrying the authority of the other. One born up under the tutelage of the other. One carrying out the will and plans of the other. THIS was who Jesus was saying He was.
Jesus’ words brought to mind a picture of a father training his son in his profession. The master carpenter training his child from an early age. Passing down the love of something the father values to his son. This just brought new meaning to me in the Proverb, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Prov. 22:6).
God didn’t have to “train” Jesus as in “teach” Him what He needed because they were together in the beginning and discussed all this LONG before speaking the first words of creation. But when Jesus came to earth as an infant, He was “trained” under the care of His earthly father through the will and guidance of His Heavenly Father. Jesus experienced the day to day life of a man but He NEVER lost the authority or understanding He had as the Son of God. I wonder if Joseph ever thought, “What can I teach Him that He doesn’t already know?” I believe that Joseph is absent in Jesus’ adult life because He would have still been subject to His earthly father’s authority otherwise. He needed the constriction of the earthly mantle removed before He could operate fully under His Heavenly Father’s authority.
The things that Jesus did that He learned at the Father’s side are amazing! The greatest of these “lessons” He learned is how to show His love to this hurting and undeserving world. The Father’s whole plan revolved around love. God didn’t keep anything hidden from Jesus in His plan. God’s plan involved showing this world one of the greatest works; restoring life to His broken Son. God was going to raise Jesus from the dead, and because He would do this, Jesus would also raise those He chose from the dead.
Jesus’ gift of life is more than the individuals He encountered during His ministry that were physically raised back to life, but His is an eternal resurrection. Everlasting life! This is the authority the Father has passed on to the Son. Only those who believe in the Son’s authority from the Father can receive this gift of eternal life. Simply acknowledging and/or loving the Father is not enough. You MUST honor the Father’s choice to bestow the right of judgement on His Son Jesus. You MUST recognize Jesus as God’s Son. Part of Himself. “Bone of my Bone” so to speak.
God leaves ultimate judgement of us in the hands of Jesus. He “walked a mile in our shoes.” He knows intimately the ways of man. He had every chance to choose sin that we do. He was fully man. He is also fully God. THAT is why He was given the authority to execute judgement.
This wonderful news was going to be shared with the previously dead very shortly. When Jesus joined them in the grave, He would bring with Him that authority given by the Father. Jesus also holds that same authority over the final judgement of ALL mankind. Those who believe in Him and hear His voice will be given eternal life. Those who don’t will receive eternal judgement.
Which one will you be? There is no middle ground or third option. “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).
Father God, I want that to be true of ALL of my house! True for my children and my grandchildren. I am taking You at Your word earlier about training up a child too. I showed my children You and Your love to the best of my abilities. I KNOW I made mistakes, but I trust You to have carried my children safely through them. Please remove the scars from their hearts where I wounded them! Help them find the love in You that You have instilled in me. Be REAL to them! Please don’t let me have damaged them beyond repair!
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your love and Your willingness to “walk in our shoes.” To personally show us Your Father. We couldn’t have ever seen ALL that He is without You personally revealing Him to us. I’m sorry for all the times I didn’t accurately express to my children the depth and breadth of who You and the Father are; in my life and in general. Please forgive me for my shortcomings and rescue my children from my mistakes. Love them back into relationship! Love them into a REAL ABIDING relationship with You. I trust You with their hearts. I trust You with mine too. Lead me in the way I should go every day! Train me up as Your child. Let me watch Your hands in motion. Take my hands in Yours and guide them in the execution of the tasks You place in my path. Hand over hand. Daily guiding my movements, but gently decreasing the pressure of Your hands on mine, until finally You stand and watch as I work in Your ways without stumbling. I have a feeling it will be a LONG time before that happens, but I trust You showed me that picture for a reason.
(You showed me how to do this practically when I was teaching my children to drive. I sat beside them sharing the knowledge I had gained, but also kept my hand on the steering wheel. Daily decreasing my control until they learned the skills needed to do the job alone. They weren’t perfect in their execution, but had learned enough that they needed my confidence in their abilities to carry them the rest of the way.)