Exacting Obedience

July 25, 2016

John 14:28-31

“You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe. 30I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold on me, 31but the world must learn that I love the Father and that I do exactly what my Father has commanded me. 

“Come now; let us leave.”

Exacting Obedience

If Jesus showed and demonstrated one thing in His life it was that He was completely obedient to the Father.  His obedience wasn’t dictated by the Law or obligation, it was the motive of complete love and surrender to the will of the Father that flowed through the life of Jesus.  Jesus, the Son of man, the earthen vessel was the divine expression of the Father through His this love and that relationship that indwelt Him.  

The Jew’s asked, “Who are you?” in John 8:25-29. 

“Just what I have been claiming all along,” Jesus replied. 26″I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is reliable, and what I have heard from him I tell the world.” 

27They did not understand that he was telling them about his Father. 28So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am the one I claim to be and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. 29The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.The bond of obedience in Jesus was sealed in the love of the Father.  It was the bond of that love and union that made the Father and the Son one in Jesus.  This is why Jesus could speak with the authority that He did while not exalting Himself, but always the Father.  

Jesus again speaks strongly to His deity through His unity with the Father in John 5:16-30. “So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jews persecuted him. 17Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.” 18For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. 

19Jesus gave them this answer: “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. 20For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, to your amazement he will show him even greater things than these. 21For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it. 22Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him. 

24″I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life. 25I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. 26For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself. 27And he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man. 

28″Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice 29and come out—those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned. 30By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.”  What was He saying, but that I am the expression of the Father’s message and salvation to all who will hear, receive and obey.  Jesus was of one mind and one heart with the Father, so when the Jews rejected, persecuted and finally crucified Jesus.  What they did to the Son they did to the Father.  

Finally in John 14:5-14 we again come full circle when Thomas asks Jesus to show them the Father and they will be satisfied.  Jesus tells Him plainly of the relationship between the Father and the Son.  “Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” 

6Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” 

8Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” 

9Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. 12I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. 14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

In this hour when the Spirit of the Lord is working in us to conform us to image and likeness of Christ, it will come through no effort or proclamation of our own, it will be birthed out of the union of love and obedience to the Father and the Son as we live it out through the power of His Spirit in us.  Jesus so expresses this to us as He continues to speak in verses 15-21, ““If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” If we would know Christ in His fullness then we must know the relationship of exacting obedience birthed out of the extreme love we have for Christ.  May we become that expression in word and deed that He was of the Father.  

Blessings,

#kent

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