Thursday, 24 June 2010

Jesus, the Son of man (a Son of David), the Lamb of God


The great sacrifice of the Lamb of God for the salvation of the world, lost in sin
Isaiah 53:1-3 "Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not."
Thus begins the prophecy of Isaiah, 700 years before the birth of the Messiah, about the sacrifice that, at the crossing point of the ages, the Lamb of God must bring to rout the sin of man. Here God's Spirit utters His grief about the indifference, the insensitivity, and the contempt of mankind, lost in sin, and especially of Israel; in the eyes of God this is an all-encompassing event at the crossing point of the ages for the salvation of mankind, here called "dry ground". Something of God sprouts here into one root of His prophetic Word, which has come alive, and which He declared immediately after the fall (into sin) of the first human couple.
Genesis 3:15 "And I will put enmity between thee (satan[1] and his power of sin) and the woman (Eve and repentant mankind, which is to be born of her), and between thy seed (all unrepentant men that are inspired by satan) and her seed (all penitent people that turn to God); it shall bruise thy (the sin serpent's and the power of satan's) head, and thou shalt bruise (hinder) his heel (the heel tendon; the walk of the people who have repented and allow themselves to be led by the inspiration of God's Spirit)."

1) The Son of man (the incarnation of God's Son, a Son of David)
That "root" in Isaiah 53:2 is the incarnation of the Son of God, Who went out from the Father for this purpose (John 16:28) and came into Mary's womb to unite Himself with her ovum, thus bringing forth the Son of man.
Romans 1:3-4 "Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead."
After the flesh He is the Son of man, a Sprout (Descendant, litt. a Sperm) of David (a sinful man), of Mary. This is why we read in Romans 8 verse 3:
"For what the law could not do (namely the justification of man), in that it (the law) was weak through the (sinful) flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness (Greek: homoioma) of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh."
The Greek word "homoioma" means copy, equality (of sinful man).
Hebrews 2:17-18 "Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like (Greek: homoioma) unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted."
Hebrews 4:15 "For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin."
God, and also God's Son, cannot be tempted with evil (with sin) (James 1:13), but the Son of man could, because He, after the flesh, was a descendant of the forgiven sinner David. Hence, after His soul, the Son of man experienced temptations of His flesh, but He overcame them all and kept His blood pure.
Hebrews 10:5 "Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body (David's flesh) hast thou prepared me."
Thus, the Son of man was made sin for us from His birth (2 Corinthians 5:21) and bore our sins in His body. He was therefore killed on the cross for our sins.
During His earthly walk He had a human will, which is contradictory to God's will.
John 6:38 "For I came down from heaven (and became Man), not to do mine own (human) will, but the will of him that sent me."
Would He have been only God's Son, as in the case of His earthly revelation form as Melchisedec at the time of Abraham (Hebrews 7:1-3), then only God's will would have been in Him, and He would never have been able to be tempted with sinful temptations, because the Son of God, not mixed with fallen, carnal man, never could be tempted. Let us honor the Word of God, as concerning this "being the Son of David", and not stubbornly take away from or add unto it, thus defiling God's Word.
It was in order to save us that the Son of man made Himself so vulnerable to temptation and sin; yet He remained without sin. He had to be a member of the sinful human family, representing mankind, in order to be able, in their place, to pay for the sins of man. But men in Jesus’ time seeing Him, did not esteem Him. He was despised by them, and rejected, and only desired by few; this according to Isaiah 53:2-3.

2) The Lamb of God.
The heavenly Father made Him a sin offering for the human sin.
Isaiah 53:4-7 "Surely he hath born our grieves, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. all we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and e was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the laughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.”

3) His death and the 3 days and 3 nights.
Matthew 12:40 "For as Jones was three days and three nights in the whale's belly: so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth."
Isaiah 53:8-10 "He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for he transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand."

4) The resurrection.
Acts 2:23-27 "Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope: Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption."
The pains of death were loosed for Him. The body suffers no pain when dead, but the soul does The Lord Jesus was in Hades, the domain of death, for three days and three nights. Jesus said to the murderer, who repented unto Him on the cross, "Today you shall be with Me in paradise" (Luke 23:43). This must have been through the Holy Spirit, be-cause Jesus, at that time, was in Hades in the body. It is written in Acts 2:26-27: "...My flesh shall rest in hope, ...and thou wilt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption". Thus, His body was not to see corruption (decay); this would have set in on the fourth day, and He arose after three days and three nights. In verse 27 it is also written: "Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (Hades)...". This verse also tells us, that His soul was in Hades for three days and three nights.
Acts 13:32-35 "And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers, God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David. Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption."
Because man is a unity after spirit, soul and body, so it is with Jesus, the Son of man. His Spirit, the Spirit of the Son of God, also had to go into Hades. Hence the Son of God and the Son of man must be born again of God. The Son of God, before His incarnation, was born of God in the eternity of the past.
Micah 5:2 "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be Ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting"
Now that He dies in the unity of the Son of man, He must be born anew of God. Hence it is written:
Hebrews 5:5b "Thou art My Son, today (i.e. with His resurrection from the dead) have I (the Father) begotten (made to be born) thee (the Son of man)." (See also: Psalms 2:7b; Acts 13:33b; Hebrews 1:5)
In the depths of Hades at first a small Godly Light was inflamed, Which gradually became larger and larger. What tu-mult that must have caused in satan's domain! Then the Son of man arose as the victorious Lion of Judah, went up to satan and snatched from him the keys of death and hell.
Revelation 1:18 "(I am the First and the Last): I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death."
Now He can deliver all souls, which repent unto Him, from the prison of sin and death, and lead them into His eternal life.
Ephesians 4:8 "Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity (of sin) captive, and gave gifts (of forgiveness, redemption and renewal) unto men."

5) The ascension, His task as Highpriest at the right hand of God in His throne.
Hebrews 9:11-15 "But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance."
Having risen from the dead, and ascended into heaven, the Lord Jesus as God's High Priest, seated at God's right hand, can now deliver many from the power of satan and sin, and bring them into the eternal glory with Him, and, them being sanctified, He can lead them to our Father God in the highest heaven.
Isaiah 53:11-12 "He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong, because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors."
To God be all glory!


By E. van den Worm

[1] We write the word satan not with a capital, as it is not a name, but a word meaning opponent or adversary, accuser.

Jesus, the Son of man (a Son of David), the Lamb of God.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

LUKE (Chapter 8) - Like a sevenfold candelstick for God


Part II:
The life in the HOLY PLACE of the resurrection person

In the previous chapters of the study of luke, we saw how the priest of God was formed; namely out of sinners, lost in sin and guilt. For Jesus was willing to cleanse us, who were sinners, in His blood, and to renew us in and by His Spirit. In Chapter 7 we saw, that in Christ we may be resurrected into NEW LIFE.
In this Chapter we shall have a close look at the different kinds of priestly labor we may perform in and by Him after having been anointed for it by Him. We will discover that we have been saved by Him in order to save others! We will also discover that this labor, in its totality, makes God's light to shine as by a sevenfold, gold candlestick which was also to be seen by those who, deliberately coming out of the Forecourt, entered that Holy Place.
This candlestick consisted of a shaft (one arm with a foot on which the whole candlestick rests) in the middle, and of six branches, which come out of the shaft by twos. That shaft and those branches together give a sevenfold light. The same way the spiritual candlestick of God (namely our testimony in and by the Holy Spirit) today gives its sevenfold light in this dark world for the glorification of the wonderful Name of God. So a child of God, cleansed in the precious blood of Jesus, and renewed in and by the power of the Word and the Holy Spirit, must walk in priestly service in this world; in order to proclaim to that same world the sevenfold light of God's glory, and to reveal it. Let us have a closer look at this sevenfold Light, in sequence.

1. We must deny ourselves things and be prepared to bring sacrifices in honor of Jesus
Luke 8 verse 1-3: "And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him. And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils, And Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto him of their substance."
We see here, as the first light of God's candlestick, the willingness to bring a sacrifice for the use of the Gospel of God... We see here women willingly going with Jesus, Who is the Word of God, Who proclaimed His Father's Word, namely the Gospel, the Good News. They took care of all the material and financial things He needed for this. The life of each servant of God should be like this. Everything he possesses materially, should be dedicated to the increase of God's Kingdom.
There is a clear characteristic in the life of a servant of God: he is not stingy for the work of Jesus! His purse is always open for the work of his Lord. He even put all his belongings in Jesus' hands. When you see someone who is stingy with regard to Jesus' work (think of the biblical "tithe"), then you know such a person is not yet born again. Which is not to say, that a servant of God is wasteful with his money, but the Lord has full control over it. Jesus knows that His children still need money in this world for all their activities.

2. We must dedicate our life to Jesus, and labor in honor of Him alone.
A servant of God is a revealer of the Word, a proclaimer to the world of the Gospel. God's Word must be heard from his mouth. He must be a sounding board of God, that is always ready (and thus pure); an open and not a clogged channel.
Luke 8 verse 4-15: "And when much people were gathered together, and were come to him out of every city, he spake by a parable: A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it. And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be (mean)? And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand. Now the (explanation of the) parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with (daily) cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth (spiritual) fruit with patience."
Here we see a sower sowing seed. The Lord explained that the seed is the Word of God that is proclaimed to the world. The Word of God comes forth from the heart of the Father. And it is God's servant, who in prayer must be open to this and having received it must sow this Seed into the hearts of the people.
Elsewhere in Scripture we read again, that the Word is the Sword of the Holy Spirit. Therefore it is the Holy Spirit, Who must wield this Sword, and neither you nor me... Again: we should not wield the Word; it is the Holy Spirit within us, Who through us must wield the Word. Then it will be a Sword. To what purpose? For the destruction of bonds of sin and powers of sin. The Word must cause the souls of the people to want to die to bonds of sin, and must deliver them from the powers of sin. But if we are not willing to be delivered, then this Sword will be judgment to us! But when we are prepared to see the evil within ourselves – by the Word revealed to us; and when we are prepared to lay our (old and sinful) life in the hands of Jesus Christ, our Lord, then this Sword of the Spirit will kill all sin in us and... deliver us from all works of satanic powers in our life (Romans 8:2).
Seen in this light, who do you think the Sower is? It is God's Holy Spirit, Who works in and by His servants... He builds the Kingdom of God! He alone is the Builder of the Kingdom of God and of the temple of our heart (Matthew 16:18; John 15;:5; Psalm 127:1-2). We are merely channels; human channels in His hand, through which the Word may flow which must come directly from the heart of the Father; and for which we pleaded, wrestling in prayer before His throne. It is His bread, the Bread of life, which we must pass on in His Name. And this Word, this Seed, is mighty Seed, which must be sowed by Him Himself working through His servants. In this parable are mentioned four cases of reception of this Seed (namely the Word) in the heart, and only in one case this event has eternal value!

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By E. van den Worm