Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Jesus' uncanny knowledge of God

TODAY'S SPECIAL: John 8:12-30

TO CHEW ON: "'And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone; for I always do those things that please Him.'" John 8:29

Some of Jesus' statements about His relationship to God and His knowledge of God's will and thoughts didn't only raise the eyebrows of the scribes and Pharisees, but get us pondering too.

Three 'controversial' statements of His jump out at me from today's reading:

''He who sent Me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I heard from Him'" (John 8:26).
"'...I do nothing of Myself, but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things'" (John 8:28).
"'The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him'" (John 8:29).

When and how did the human Jesus hear things from God? Was He tapping into pre-birth memories of life with the Father in heaven? Was this knowledge the fruit of the communion that went on between them when Jesus spent all those hours praying? Or did God the Father stay in constant touch with Him, guiding His thoughts and actions throughout the day?

Jesus' statements imply a connection with deity that no other person has ever been able to make. They support the conclusion that He was not only human but also divine.

Of course my speculation of how Jesus knew God so intimately is futile. Way bigger minds than mine have tried to plumb the mystery of the divine incarnated in the human. I like how Wayne Grudem summarizes the incarnation* (using an unattributed quote and explaining it):

"'Remaining what he was, he became what he was not.' In other words while Jesus continued remaining what he was (that is fully divine) he also became what he previously had not been (that is fully human as well)" - Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology, p. 562.

What implications does this have for us?
  • We can trust the words Jesus says to be in agreement with the words of God.
  • We can look at His life and see what God would do in various situations.
  • We have in Him our pattern, example, mentor, and teacher, to live a life in the light that is in agreement with truth.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, thank You for coming as a person, giving us a glimpse of God in human terms. Help me to copy, through the power and enabling of the Holy Spirit, the things I see Jesus do. Amen.

MORE: The mystery of incarnation
"To complete the biblical teaching about Jesus Christ, we must affirm not only that he was fully human, but also that he was fully divine. Although the word does not explicitly occur in Scripture, the church has used the term incarnation to refer to the fact that Jesus was God in human flesh. The incarnation* was the act of God the Son whereby he took to himself a human nature" - Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology, p. 543.

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