Friday Morning Manna October 4, 2019 Nathaniel Fajardo
He Surrendered and Submerged His Will to the Father’s Will
“For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.”John 6: 38
It will never suffice to reverently address Him in muffled tones, “Lord Jesus” or frenziedly shout “Jesus is Lord! Hallelujah,” or engage in any of the popular forms in the Christian mainstream of praise-worshipping and glorifying Him as “Lord and Savior” or even performing the miraculous, including casting out demons, using His name—unless the one professing and performing such things is factually and in reality, doing the will of the Father.
Starting with Eve and down through the generations of man, Satan has continuously used with alarming success, the miraculous and the supernatural, not to enlighten and save but to deceive, confuse, and destroy mankind. God’s people should also be preparing for his final “overmastering delusion” before Jesus comes by fortifying their minds with the great testing truths of the Bible, particularly the prophecies for the last days. Do we know what they are?
Doing God’s will, by His definition and standard, is obeying His law from the heart, as manifested in one’s life–the “living testimony.” Indeed, “By their fruits you shall know them” (Matt. 7: 16-20), that is, either the “fruits of the Spirt” or the “works of the flesh” are manifested (Gal. 5: 32- 30, 19-21).
All man-made religious laws are but contradictions to God’s Word that has been “purified seven times.” (Ps. 12: 6). Nothing can be added or taken away from it (Deut. 4: 2; Rev. 22: 18, 19), even with the best of intentions, without disobeying God’s Word that forbids it, thereby apostatizing from and lying against the truth, in rebellion against the omnipotent Law giver.
Here is the divinely-formulated antidote against our sin-diseased, natural propensities to disobey and to “practice lawlessness and iniquity.” “Thy Word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against Thee.” Ps. 119: 11. The word of a king is law in itself, it is fiat, meaning: “By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth.” “For He spoke and it was done; He commanded and it stood fast.” Ps. 33: 5, 9, KJV.
Here’s what the Son of God and the Son of man, combined, said of Himself by way of prophecy: “I delight to do Thy will, O My God, Yea Thy law is within my heart.” Ps. 40: 8, KJV. In order to do the Father’s will, as His only-begotten Son declared and demonstrated by His life example, man is to obey God’s law from the heart, not in lip service, certainly not in partial obedience. In the Bible, it is impossible to “fulfill” in partial or coerced obedience—it is not a heart work for it is not done voluntarily, willingly, cheerfully and in love, faith and trust in God, but on self or on something else man-made.
The same mirror application is seen in this familiar verse: “Love is the fulfilling of the law.” Rom. 13: 10. Thus, “Fulfilling the law is love.” Or more accurately, “Love for God is fulfilling His law of love, and “Fulfilling God’s law is love for God, the Lawgiver. Indeed, Jesus, the last Adam, said to all who have ears that will hear: “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” John 14: 15.
Here’s what the Son of man said to the sons of men: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. ‘Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ ‘And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me; you who practice lawlessness (iniquity, KJV).” Matt. 7: 21, NKJV.
The Lord’s Prayer
First, a necessary correction here. The widely-referred to and even more powerfully-sung “The Lord’s Prayer” is not actually His prayer but the how-to model prayer He taught His disciples, in response to their specific request. His prayer, in fact, the valedictory prayer for His disciples is recorded in John chapter 17. Read, study, contemplate and meditate on its lofty and sublime theme. E. G. White says that the Lord’s prayer for unity is the “creed” of the church. – “The prayer of Christ to His Father, contained in the seventeenth chapter of John, is to be our church creed. It shows us that our difference and disunion are dishonoring to God. Read the whole chapter, verse by verse.” – MS 12, 1899/3SM 21.1.
After studying it for a while, I understood why this has to be the creed of the remnant people of God–with the division, disunity and confusion in the world that Jesus died to save, in the nation that is even called “United States, in the world’s religions and churches, and in the very homes, the basic unit of society, even of professed believers—in this one line: “That they (His disciples) also may be one in US, that the world may believe that You sent Me!” v 21, N.K.J.V.
This prayer is saying that the lost world will only believe that Christ is indeed the One-and-only Sent of God, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, when they see His professed disciples and church exhibiting the oneness and unity in Christ amidst the peace-destroying divisions in the world around them. They will be observed to individually possess “the peace that passes understanding” when the storms of life suddenly strike without warning. They have, as a people, the divine rest that sanctifies by keeping holy the Sabbath day appointed and set aside by the divine Lord of creation, the exact same day that that the human Lord of the Sabbath” Himself kept, but not in the corrupted way the nation was observing it.
Instead of abrogating it, He did the opposite by fulfilling the specific prophecy, “He would magnify the law and make it honorable.” How? By (1) demonstrating its original and true spiritual meaning (2) exposing the counterfeit religious laws and their self-proclaimed, self-sent spiritual” guardians of their souls,” thereby incurring the wrath and venomous hatred of those who used these to control the lives and conscience of the people. What Jesus did away with was the legalism, legalese, traditions, fables, superstitions and the veritable mass and mess of man-made religious laws that their leaders kept adding to the Sabbath and the Decalogue itself.
In this instance He clearly said, “the Son of man,” not the Son of God, “is Lord also of the Sabbath,” and that the “Sabbath was made for man,” not for God, and “not man for the Sabbath. The Creator did not create man for the Sabbath but the Sabbath for man. Since God created everything good and perfect for the benefit of man at creation, the Sabbath which rounded up the creation week, was also good and perfect for man, for whom it was made. So how dare any man change what God has made for man’s benefit and good. Only fools do.
Apostle Paul also expressed it this way: “The mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints. To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles [unbelievers]: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Col. 1: 26, 27. Yes, Christ in you and me is the hope of glory! The world does and will not equate the word and idea of “glory” with this because they hang their hopes on everything else but on Jesus Christ and His righteousness! How about us?
The “Teacher sent of God” (John 3: 2) taught His disciples the model prayer wherein they were to say: “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Matt. 6: 10. Since God the Father “changeth not” “with whom there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (Mal. 3: 6; James 1: 17), His divine will is as eternal and unchanging as He is, whether in heaven or earth but particularly more so after the fall. Why? Because God’s will is the crux of the great controversy between Christ and Satan!
In training-up the first Twelve, who He would empower “to do greater things than He did” in preaching “the everlasting gospel to the whole world” by sending them His vicegerent, the Holy Spirit,” after His ascension, the last Adam, did not teach them anything that He Himself did not practice nor asked them to do that which He did not demonstrate by example. He practiced what He preached that’s why His life was pure, consistent, transparent and uncompromisingly true to His prophesied mission as the Messiah, the Savior of the world. Even if He did not speak a word, the silent yet eloquent witness of His life alone would have sufficed to prove His divinity beyond any reasonable doubt, even to His bitterest enemies. That’s why in rejecting Him and having Him crucified on false charges, they condemned themselves to eternal death.
As our Model-Man and Example (1 Pet.2 : 21-25), the last Adam, as the Son of man, not as the Son of God, prayed, trusted, obeyed and surrendered His whole incarnated Human will to the divine will of the Father—that same will the Father had in the plan of redemption that was “prepared before the foundations of the earth were laid.”
Now, did He, “the Word who was with God, and was God” then “made flesh” (John 1:1-2, 14) at any given time during His life on earth, ever express in any way the weakness and passion of shared humanity, having been “made in the likeness of sinful flesh” (Rom. 8: 2)?
Yes, He did. When and where?
Right here: in His death struggle in the Garden of Gethsemane. Men and angels beheld the Innocent Guilt bearer having the guilt of the sins of the whole rolled upon His incarnated humanity. See Matt. 26: 36-42. Jesus, the last Adam prayed three times to the Father: The first time: “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me, nevertheless not as I will, but as You will.” v 39. “He went away a second time and prayed, saying, ‘O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.” v 42. “And He found them [Peter, James and John] asleep again, for their eyes were heavy. So He left them, went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words [‘O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.’].”vs 43, 44.
There are two parts to these three similar but not identical prayers of Christ to the Father regarding this particular “cup” He had the choice of drinking or not at Gethsemane: The first: “If it be possible, let this cup pass from Me, nevertheless not as I will [desire, hope, or want ], but as You will.” On the second and third, He prayed differently; it was not a prayer of possibility as of the first but of resignation. “If this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.” But notice that in each of these prayers He made it plain: it is not My will—want, hope, desire, or choice to make, which I could—but Your will, O Father!
In His second and third prayers, He Himself reset the condition of His resignation which reflects His own will at work, which was still consistent to the will of the Father as the plan of redemption had it. “If this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.” “Unless I.” Jesus was saying, Therefore, I will choose, I will exercise my will in My human nature to drink the “cup” because I know that that is Your divine will.
At this critical junction where the “destiny of mankind hung in a balance,” the last Adam fully, actively and willingly, not passively nor grudgingly, submerged His entire will to the Father’s will. Thusly whether in His human nature or divine nature, the will of the Father and the Son were one as it was in the beginning, together of course with that of the Holy Spirit Who is the third Person of the Godhead “but devoid of the personality of humanity.”
The last Adam declared: “For I have come down from heaven.” What did He mean by “come down” and how? (1) He, in all the glory (both in character excellence and physical luminescence) that He had from the beginning with the Father, did not descend from His throne of glory in heaven to our sin-darkened earth in His original form and glory—no mortal could have gazed upon it that was “ten times brighter than the noonday sun”—and live.
He could have simply hidden Himself in or behind a “thick cloud” (of covering angels) and “spoken from behind it” causing thunder, lightning and a great earthquake, as He did when He spoke with Moses on the top of Mt. Sinai. But then man, through His first disciples would not have been able to say and write: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled concerning the Word of life—the life was manifested, and we have seen and bear witness, and declare to you that, you also may have [this level of] fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. These things we write to you that your joy may be full.” 1 John 1-4. He would have remained an invisible and at best, a vicarious, not an individual Savior, personally and intimately known to us in fellowship with the disciples.
Instead, He came down to our human level. How low? “Four thousand years after the fall,” not to our sin-corrupted level of contamination, but by incarnating into the “same flesh and blood nature” of man, i.e., “in the likeness of sinful flesh” (Rom. 8: 2) that had to be subject to being tempted in all points as mankind is tempted, yet without sin” with the capacity and possibility of yielding—because of the God-given will—the right and power to choose between right or wrong, good or evil, eternal life or eternal death. Such is the governing power in man’s nature. This was part of the humanity Jesus incarnated into. And thus He prayed: “If it be possible to let this cup pass from Me, nevertheless, not My will but Thy will be done.” Herein lies the secret of our victory through Christ who strengthens us!
(To be continued next week)