Dying for or instead

Tragically, the simple words “Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8) have been grossly misunderstood as meaning that Christ died instead of us.

There are a number of connections between Romans 5 and 1 Cor. 15 (e.g. v. 12 = 1 Cor. 15:21; v. 17 = 1 Cor. 15:22). “Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8) is matched by “Christ died for our sins” (1 Cor. 15:3). His death was in order to make a way whereby we can gain forgiveness of our sins; it was in this sense that “Christ died for us”. The word “for” does not necessarily mean ‘instead of’; Christ died “for our sins”, not ‘instead of’ them. Because of this, Christ can “make intercession” for us (Heb. 7:25) – not ‘instead of’ us. Neither does “for” mean ‘instead of’ in Heb. 10:12 and Gal. 1:4.

Jesus is Our Representative Not Our Substitute

– Peter Foster

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Mortal Soul and Mortal Psyche #5 Mortality of man and mortality of the spirit

Mortality of man and mortality of the spirit

Though we are mortal, we have a choice of spiritual birth and spiritual life, providing us with the possibility to face a better life which shall not have an end (immortality). When the New Testament speaks about a new birth and a new life it does not speak about some reincarnation, but about our transformation of our psyche, our spirit which gets a total new attitude and lets us live in a different way than before.

We have to get away from our old attitudes; we have to cut down our old trunk or put our old ‘me’ to death, giving the new ‘me’ the opportunity to spring up from fertile ground. By coming to the true faith we shall blossom again, and our renewed psyche or spirit shall be like the branches of a tree and shall not fail. The power of a plant to spring forth lies within itself (Genesis 3:22), but man needs “outside help.” A man that has died is utterly gone, and when a mortal has fallen, he is no more, but when we are alive we have a choice to bring forth good branches or wild branches bringing forth no fruit. Though those who fear God may have to work hard and have to endure difficulties like others in the world, they may count on the Most High, when they produce fruits worthy of repentance.

Frans Floris - The Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, ...

Frans Floris – The Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, Son of God, Gathering and Protecting Mankind – WGA7949 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The New Testament speaks about new life, which is the life of the Christian attitude to the Old Law and to the world which does not fear God. For those who accept Jesus, the Old Law is no longer the first ruling principle in their life. It is not that they really died, but they put away their old life figuratively. We, when we changed our position in life, and choose to follow Jesus try to obtain union with him. It is also not us who directly will be raised from the dead. The significance of being “raised from the dead” lies in the fact that it was Christ’s death that made the fatal blow to the power of the “old man” – the seed of the serpent, or lust. It is only through the power of Christ’s resurrection that the efficacy of his victory can pass to us by our identification with his death in baptism, for we must be raised to “a new life”. But that new life in Christ can only bear fruit of Christ because he has been raised from the dead.

First there is the spiritual or figuratively coming to a new life in this world system and only later there will be for each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then only those who belong to Christ at His coming. Not earlier. Only at the return of Christ they will be taken out of the dead to be judged by Christ Jesus. Only at the end times the world will see the dead coming back to life or to see the psyches called to come in front of the judgement seat of Jesus.

The followers of Christ, who know they are formed of dust and have to return to dust, shall find themselves liberated from death by Jesus, the unique Son of God, the ‘only begotten.’ By the right free choices they made they shall be allowed to look at that eternal life, having age-abiding life, not to be lost or to be wasted to undergo a second death and to perish forever.

 

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Preceding

Mortal Soul and Mortal Psyche #4 Psyche, According to the Holy Scriptures

Continued with: Mortal Soul and Mortal Psyche #6 Summary

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Why think that (2) … Jesus claimed to be something special

As discussed in the previous post, Jesus is mentioned here and there by some non-Christians, like the Jewish historian Josephus and the Roman historian Tacitus. But our main source of information is that provided by the early Christians themselves. This evidence comes in two main types. There are the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John), which are conventionally dated from around 70 AD but may well be earlier. Then there are letters that early Christians sent to individuals or churches. There are a number of these in the Bible, many of which were probably written before the gospels. Taken together these provide us with a lot of information about Jesus and who he claimed to be.

First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pi...

Gospel sources – First page of the Gospel of Mark, by Sargis Pitsak, a Medieval Armenian scribe and miniaturist (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We should comment at this point about the way we’re using these sources. Though they come from the Bible, they are also historical sources and we’re going to treat them in that way. So at this point we’re not too bothered about whether every last detail of the gospels is correct or not. Nor need we be concerned about whether these documents also contain messages from God. We can leave such issues till later. For now we can just look these documents for what they are – ancient documents, which contain information about Jesus, written by people who were in a position to know. So what do these sources say about who Jesus claimed to be?

Well, the most obvious one is that Jesus was called “Christ” (or more properly, the Christ) – that’s where the name “Christians” come from. “Christ” is the Greek word meaning “anointed” , equivalent of the Hebrew word “Messiah”. The concept of being “anointed” refers to the ceremony by which someone was made king in ancient Israel. (There is a good example of this in the Old Testament when David is anointed as king – see 1 Samuel 16). By the time of Jesus the kingdom of Israel had long since been destroyed and the Jews were essentially living under Roman rule. But the Old Testament prophets had predicted that the royal line of the ancient kings of Israel would be restored and that there would be a king again. Many Jews living at the time of Jesus expected the Messiah to be someone who would lead them to overthrow the Romans so they could be an independent nation again. What is interesting about Jesus is that, though he claimed to be the Messiah – the promised king, he did not attempt to lead an armed rebellion against Rome. So whilst Jesus was claiming to be a king, he was not the king they were expecting.

The most common phrase Jesus used to describe himself as “Son of Man”. That may sound like an odd way to describe yourself, and it was even at the time. In the language of the day – Aramaic – the expression “son of man” was used to refer to humanity in general. But that’s not the way Jesus uses it. He doesn’t describe himself as a son of man but as the Son of Man. So what was he getting at? The Old Testament prophet Daniel presents a picture of human history, where nations are represented by vicious beasts (Daniel 7). But this succession of beast-nations does not last forever. At the end of the vision, a court is held with God seated as judge. Power and authority is taken away from the beasts and given to a new character who is described as “one like the son of man”. This character receives a kingdom from God that will last forever. So when Jesus describes himself as the Son of Man, he is claiming to be the future king, the one who will receive a kingdom from God. But not a kingdom like the human kingdoms that preceded it. Instead this is good kingdom that will last forever.

Jesus is often described as being the Son of God. And frequently Jesus presents himself as having a unique father-son relationship with God. He is not saying that he is a child of God in the sense that all God’s creatures are his children. He is claiming that he has a relationship with God that is entirely unique. The gospels include the stories about Jesus’ birth, whereby his mother, Mary, becomes pregnant despite being a virgin. According to the gospels Jesus had no biological father (though no doubt Joseph cared for Jesus as his own son). So in a very real sense God was Jesus’ father. But being the Son of God is not just about parentage. Jesus claimed to have a very special relationship with God. The gospel writers describe Jesus has having special power to perform miracles, special wisdom to teach people God’s ways and special authority to forgive sins. Jesus was not simply claiming to be a prophet or holy man, but God’s special representative on earth.

Lastly, Jesus took the remarkable step of claiming that he was going to die. And not in battle, or by murder, but that he was going to die to free people from sin. He says:

The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:45)

Westvorhalle der Stiftsbasilika St. Vitus, Ell...

The King of the Jews (INRI) Nailed to death – Westvorhalle der Stiftsbasilika St. Vitus, Ellwangen (Jagst) Kreuzaltar, Hans und Matthäus Schamm (Ottobeuren) zugeschrieben, um 1610; detail: Christushaupt und INRI (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And the early Christians reflecting on the death of Jesus also recognised it as a special death. A preacher named Paul wrote to a church explaining the things he had learnt from talking to those who knew Jesus. He writes:

What I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3)

Now Jesus did die. He was executed. He was nailed to a cross by Roman soldiers and died gasping for air. He died the death of a criminal. He should have been forgotten by history. But his followers understood his death differently. This was not the last disgrace of a failed prophet. This was the turning point of history. When God’s representative on earth made the ultimate sacrifice to so that people could be forgiven for the things they’d done wrong and start a new life.

So that’s what Jesus claimed about who he was and what he would achieve. But is it true? Was Jesus a future king? Was Jesus God’s representative on earth? And did Jesus’ death provide a way for us to change our relationship with God? Well there is one more thing that the early Christians claimed about Jesus: that he rose from the dead – that he stopped being dead and came alive again. And if that is true then we’re no longer dealing with the claims of a human man but with a moment when God intervened in history to change the world.

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 Preceding: Why think that (1) … Jesus existed?

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Related articles:

  1. Prophets making excuses
  2. Written to recognise the Promissed One
  3. Patriarch Abraham, Muslims, Christians and the son of God
  4. Story of Jesus’ birth begins long before the New Testament
  5. Jesus begotten Son of God #3 Messiah or Anointed one
  6. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:13-17 – Jesus Declared God’s Son at His Baptism
  7. Servant of his Father
  8. Slave for people and God
  9. People Seeking for God 5 Bread of life
  10. The Anointed One and the first day of No Fermentation
  11. Anointing of Christ as Prophetic Rehearsal of the Burial rites
  12. Atonement And Fellowship 5/8
  13. Atonement And Fellowship 6/8
  14. Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be
  15. How is it that Christ pleased God so perfectly?
  16. Wishing to do the will of God
  17. For the Will of Him who is greater than Jesus
  18. Imprisonment and execution of Jesus Christ
  19. Marriage of Jesus 7 Impaled
  20. A Messiah to die
  21. Death of Christ on the day of preparation
  22. In the death of Christ, the son of God, is glorification
  23. 14 Nisan a day to remember #1 Inception
  24. Days of Nisan, Pesach, Pasach, Pascha and Easter
  25. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ
  26. The Song of The Lamb #6 Revelation 14
  27. Jerusalem and a son’s kingdom
  28. Kingdom Visions of a Man, Throne and Great crowd
  29. Signs of the Last Days
  30. Getting out of the dark corners of this world
  31. The Immeasurable Grace bestowed on humanity
  32. Ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:26
  33. A Living Faith #6 Sacrifice
  34. Self inflicted misery #7 Good news to our suffering
  35. Miracles of revelation and of providence 1 Golden Thread and Revelation

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  • Sunday (August 24): “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (shechina.wordpress.com)
    At an opportune time Jesus tested his disciples with a crucial question: “Who do the people say that I am and who do you say that I am?” (Matthew 16:13). Jesus was widely recognized in Israel as a mighty man of God, even being compared with the greatest of the prophets, John the Baptist, Elijah, and Jeremiah. Peter, always quick to respond, exclaimed that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of the living God.
  • Jesus is the Messiah (darnellbarkman.wordpress.com)
    ‘Christ’ in early Christianity was a title, and only gradually became an alternative proper name for Jesus. In practice ‘Messiah’ is mostly restricted to the notion, which took various forms in ancient Judaism, of the coming King who would be David’s true heir, through whom YAHWEH [The Creator God’s proper name] would rescue Israel from pagan enemies.
  • Christianity Fast Facts (wdsu.com)
    Followers of the Christian religion base their beliefs on the life, teachings, and death of Jesus Christ.Christians believe in one God that created heaven, earth, and the universe.
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    On the third day after his crucifixion, Jesus Christ arose from the dead.
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    The first Christians were Jews who came to believe Jesus was the Messiah. Gentiles (non-Jews) also made up a large majority of its followers, as is the case today.
  • Secular Israel vs Biblical Israel: Are they the Same? (endtimesprophecyreport.wordpress.com)
    With the Gaza War resuming in earnest, now seems to be the time for a few observations about the secular state of Israel, biblical Israel, Jews, the synagogue of Satan and the deliberate Corporate (and other) Media smokescreens which obscure these subjects.
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    Of course, the largest mistake–and there are quite a few in the linked piece, which is relatively short–is that one cannot separate the Jews as a people from the actions taken by the leadership of the secular state of Israel.  But we know that is a lie.
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    We’re commanded to warn about deception; that deception includes the secular, man-created state of Israel which is NOT biblical Israel. There are observant Jews in Israel.  They are often the victims of violence. God promises He will save His remnant–and He will.  However, make no mistake: secular Israel is not biblical Israel.  Those who confuse the two will reap the unfortunate harvest of deception.  The Christian ignores Jesus’ clear warnings in Revelation 2:9 and 3:9 at his own risk.
  • Matthew 1-7 (apologistmike.wordpress.com)
    The gospel of Matthew was written by an eyewitness to the ministry of Jesus. He was Jewish, which accounts for his emphasis on the Jewish scriptures in the work, and he was a tax collector for the Roman government. This would have enabled him to write effectively. Many early fathers such as Clement of Rome, Polycarp, Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian and Origen recognized Matthew as the author of the gospel.
  • FFOZ TV Review: Messiah (mymorningmeditations.com)
    The term Christ is one of the most important terms in all of Scripture and yet is seldom fully understood by followers of Jesus. In episode two we will explore the prophecies of the Hebrew Scriptures and learn about the Jewish people’s expectation of the coming messiah. We will study the Hebrew Scriptures and learn that they speak of a coming anointed one, a king who will come to redeem mankind, defeat Israel’s enemies, and set up his kingdom.
  • Simple Truth: Jesus is not the Messiah (leavingjesus.wordpress.com)
    “Christ” is the Greek word for “Messiah”
    “Messiah” is the transliteration of a Hebrew word that means “anointed”
  • “The Christ is the Son of David” (worryisuseless.wordpress.com)
    Why did Jesus question the Jews on the claim that their Messiah or Christ would be the son of David? After all the New Testament makes clear that Jesus himself is a direct descendant from the line of David’s throne (Romans 1:3, 2 Timothy 2:8, Matthew 1:1-17, Luke 3:23-38). Jesus posed the question to make his hearers understand that the Messiah is more than the son of David. Jesus makes his point in dramatic fashion by quoting from one of David’s prophetic psalms, Psalm 110: The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at my right hand, till I put your enemies under your feet. How can the son be the lord of his father?
  • Michele Bachmann Waiting to be Annointed Messiah (politicususa.com)
    What’s in a messiah, you ask? Like many terms it is problematic. Contrary to what many people may think, despite the origins of our word messianism is not unique to Judaism. In fact, in historical terms we can’t even speak of “Judaism” singular because there were in fact many Judaisms with different ways of life and different worldviews.[1] So not only is there not one Jewish idea (or Christian idea) of what a messiah is but not all ideas of messiahs are Jewish (or Christian).

 

Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be

Previously

In the previous writing we looked at the multitudes, being more obedient and yielding to the effect of the sign, who went to meet the Christ, hymning him as one who had conquered death, and carrying palm branches. And they do not praise him with ordinary language, but quote from the inspired Scripture that which was beautifully spoken with regard to him; confessing that he was indeed King of Israel, whom also they called specially their own king, accepting the lord-ship of the Christ.

We also saw that they spoke about the Son, they say, is Blessed: not because he who blesseth all things and guards them from destruction, and who is of the ineffable essence of the Father, receives the blessing which comes from the Father; but because the blessing which is due to One Who is God and Lord by Nature is offered to him from us, inasmuch as he came in the Name of the Lord.

Knowing his place under God

Many people in the old times as in the contemporary time do not see the prophetic language, which was quoted very suitably, with regard to that man that entered the gates of Jerusalem on a colt. For indeed some are called lords, who are not such by nature, but have the honourable name granted to them by favour. Many of them do not see the difference between tittles and names and do not remember that in the Holy Scriptures there is also spoken of a lot of gods and lords. In the Book of books men are also called “true,” when they abstain from falsehood: but this is not the thing to say with regard to Christ; for he is not called “Truth” for the reason that he does not speak falsely, but because he has that nature which is altogether superior to falsehood. He was a real man of flesh and blood and bones, having placed in the womb of his mother Miriam (Mary/Maria) from the lineage of king David. Though coming from a blue blood family, he was a simple ‘carpenters’ son. His earthly father Joseph was a skilled labourer. Jesus knew very well his place in the community, but also knew the task given by his heavenly Father, which was more important than his position on earth, where he could do nothing without his Father in heaven; Who is grater than him.

John 5:19-20 ESV  So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. (20)  For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel.

Showing the work of his Father and the way to God

In the short period of Jesus his public life, he did many miracles, but never claimed to do them by himself, and never wanting people to thank him, but told them to thank his heavenly Father, Whom is also our Father.

File:Jesus Christ fragment.JPG

Jesus Christ fragment before his death

John 14:6-7 ESV  Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (7)  If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

John 14:28-31 ESV  You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. (29)  And now I have told you before it takes place, so that when it does take place you may believe. (30)  I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me, (31)  but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.

The love of Jesus Christ (Jeshua from Nazareth) was with his heavenly Father, to whom he always prayed and taught others to pray to Him as well.

On Palm Sunday Catholics pray.

Almighty and everlasting God, who didst ordain that our Lord Jesus Christ should sit upon the foal of an ass, and didst teach the multitude to spread their garments or branches of trees in the way and to sing Hosanna to His praise: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may be able to imitate their innocence and deserve to partake of their merit.

A redeemer for the people coming to Jerusalem

File:14th-century unknown painters - The Osnabrück Altarpiece (detail) - WGA23756.jpg

Triumphal entry into Jerusalem – The Osnabrück Altarpiece (detail) Unknown Master, German (active 1370s in Westphalia)

Never did Jesus ask the people to honour him. Jesus was an humble man. This holy week we better think about that humbleness he kept. We should think about that man about whom the children cried out, saying:

This is he that is come for the salvation of the people. He is our salvation, and the redemption of Israel. How great is he whom the Thrones and Dominions go forth to meet! Fear not, O daughter of Sion; behold thy King cometh to thee sitting on an ass’s colt, as it is written.

By this man, sent form God, salvation could come over the people there but also here now.

The multitude in Jesus his time went forth to meet their redeemer with flowers and palms, and paid the homage due to a triumphant conqueror:

the Gentiles proclaim the Son of God; and their voices thunder through the skies in praise of Christ: Hosanna in the highest!

It was the time for the this one seated on the colt:

Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord: Hosanna in the Highest!

As Jeshua entered the holy city, the Hebrew children, went declaring the resurrection of life, with palm branches, cried out:

Hosanna in the highest.

An appeal to be stopped

The people in charge of Jerusalem city and its temple did not like it at all that when the people heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they went forth to meet him, showing more interest in him than in what the priests had to tell in what they considered to be the House of God.

For them it was better that this “Saviour” would not get any more attention. He had already received to much followers because he had taken their amazement by the many miracles he had done. His followers were also calling to take up the same mind which Christ Jesus showed them. How could they talk about his nature coming from the first, divine, and yet he did not see, in the rank of Godhead, a prize to be coveted (Philippians 2: 5-11).

Jesus, like his earthly parents Mary and Joseph, knew his origin, but he did not want to boast by his descent. He dispossessed himself, and took the nature of a slave, fashioned in the likeness of men, and presenting himself to us as a humble man doing the works of his Father in heaven. He lowered his own dignity, accepted an obedience which even was going to bring him to his death, death on a wooden stake.

A name given to be greater

We should know that that is why God has raised him to such a height, given him that name which is greater than any other name; so that everything in heaven and on earth and under the earth must bend the knee before the name of Jesus, and every tongue must confess Jesus Christ as the lord, dwelling in the glory of God the Father.

Philipppians 2:5-11 ESV  Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,  (6)  who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,  (7)  but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  (8)  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  (9)  Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,  (10)  so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  (11)  and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Not own will but the Will of the Father

Jesus his mind had always been on trying to do what God wanted from him. He also learned the apostles that nothing that we do means anything if the mind is not continuously fixed on God. All labour, all study, all service and sacrifice and suffering, are useless if we do not keep God before our mind, for none of it is serving its intended purpose. Like Jesus always did everything for God we always should remember: if we also are not consciously doing it for God — in love of God — it is fruitless and meaningless in any eternal sense. The mind fixed on God — in total harmony with God — is the ultimate goal and purpose of all. If any activity is not contributing to this purpose, but rather diverting the mind from it to its own self, then that activity is counter-productive and destructive, however “good” it may be. It has usurped the position of God in our heart and mind and thoughts. It has become idolatry.

Pope Francis I on Palm Sunday

Pope Francis leads the Palm Sunday mass at Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican April 13, 2014. REUTERS-Alessandro Bianchi

Pope Francis leads the Palm Sunday mass at Saint Peter’s Square at the Vatican April 13, 2014. – Credit: Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

The tired and somber-looking Pope Francis I, who led a Palm Sunday service before more than 100,000 people, opening two packed weeks of activities including Easter and the canonization of two popes, rode into the square of the Vatican on a white jeep and stopped at the centre of the square to bless palm and olive branches. He delivered an impromptu homily, putting aside the one he had prepared.

Francis spoke of the events on the last two days of Jesus’ life – his betrayal by Judas, his arrest, beating, trial and crucifixion – and asked his listeners to think hard about who they resembled more, those who helped Jesus or those who condemned him, betrayed him or were indifferent to his fate. For us this holy week we should think seriously about what had happened, what the people undertook and should question which site we do want to take.

We all could wonder like the pontiff:

“Where is my heart? Who among these people am I like? This question will remain with us all week.”

For the second straight year, Francis, whose has said the Roman Catholic Church must be closer to the poor and suffering, is holding two services for Holy Thursday outside one of Rome’s basilicas. In one he will wash and kiss the feet of elderly people in a nursing home to commemorate Jesus’ gesture of humility to his apostle on the night before he died.

14 April 2014 = 14 Nisan and the Holy Week

Tonight, April 14, we shall remember in our service this particular moment at the beginning of 14 Nisan, when the sun goes down and darkness might come over the world.

“For the infant Church, ‘Palm Sunday’ was not a thing of the past,”

wrote Pope Benedict XVI in Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week (Ignatius, 2011).

“Just as the Lord entered the Holy City that day on a donkey, so too the Church saw him coming again and again in the humble form of bread and wine.”

That “Bread and Wine“, the symbols of a New Covenant we shall remember tonight.

“At the Last Supper, on the night when he was betrayed, our savior instituted the eucharistic sacrifice of his body and blood”,

states the Vatican II Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy,

“He did this in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the Cross throughout the centuries until He should come again, and so to entrust to His beloved spouse, the Church, a memorial of His death and resurrection: a sacrament of love, a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a paschal banquet in which Christ is eaten, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us” (par. 47).

Form of a slave

The Catholic Church states also that Saint Paul in the great Christological hymn in his letter to the Philippians wrote that

“Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped”

They say the Son of God came in the “form of a slave” and humbled himself, accepting the cruelty of death on the cross. This, of course, was a most astounding, unexpected descent, flowing from the love the Father and the obedience of the son.

In the eyes of the world, the cross was complete and utter defeat. A ‘cross’ is the sign of the god Tammuz, the god of evil and “son god”, and by presenting this man nailed on that sign of evil they consider this evil conquered. The symbol of this son god would also be used to present the Christian son god or God the son (or god-son).

But, as pope Benedict XVI in Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week (Ignatius, 2011) noted, “The hour of the Cross is the hour of the Father’s true glory.”

The pilgrims who accompanied Jesus cried out, “Hosanna” (that is, “Save us!”), sang the praises of the Son of David, and told the unsettled city dwellers:

“This is Jesus the prophet, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Not his will but the Will of his Father

Many had been greatly troubled by the news of Jesus’ birth (Matthew 2:2-3), now the city was upset by this display of joyful praise; the stage was set for the arrest and crucifixion of Christ, where the vertical and horizontal movements would meet according to Catholics on the Cross.

File:Veringendorf St. Michael Gethsemane-Szene Detail.jpg

Veringendorf St. Michael Gethsemane-Scene Detail of the left column of the choir, facing the nave, showing the Agony in the Garden (Jesus Christ praying in the garden Gethsemane )

Many have forgotten what Jesus did and whom he really was. This humble man had feelings like we and was also very afraid , like we can be. Also he doubted a moment about the position of God in his life. The gospel-writers were not afraid to write it down, so that we too could see how agony could be come master of the inner soul of Christ Jesus. We this week should also remember that cry of that man of flesh and blood, who sweated in the garden of Gethsemane.  There he brought his last hours with his disciples and asked them to pray with him. There it was that Jesus said prayers to his Father in fear of what would be coming; Though there he also declared that not his will should happen. Clearly we get to know that not Jesus his will is most important, but the Will of Jesus his Father, the Only One God of gods.

Matthew 6:10 ESV  Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Those words should remind us that Jesus also said:

Matthew 7:21 ESV  “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

For Christ Jesus this doing the will of the Father was most important.

John 4:34 ESV  Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.

A call to witness

The God of our fathers appointed Jesus and his apostles, including Saul (Paul) to know His Will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from his mouth, so that they could be a witness for him to everyone of what they have seen and heard. (Acts of the Apostles 22:14-15)

Luke 22:39-44 ESV  And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.  (40)  And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” (41)  And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed,  (42)  saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” (43)  And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him.  (44)  And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.

A Spirit like God has no flesh, no blood, no bones, but Jesus had it all. He was the promise of God, the Word spoken in the Garden of Eden, that had become flesh and had brought words of truth. It was up to people to listen to those words and to take them at heart, or to ignore what they say.

Words of the Trusted One who does not forsake

Jesus had always loved and trusted the Words of his Father and had explained them to others. He also had told them they could come to his Father and trust Him. But now looking at death Jesus also was taken by fear and felt that it looked like God was far, far away from him. In case Jesus would have been God he would not have been afraid of death,because he clearly knew it could do nothing to God, or even to God’s people. But now, being a man of flesh and blood, coming into the reality to face that horror, he too was taken by fear. He also wondered, like many of us, if it could not have been that God left him on his own. He also cried like many of us want to do at certain moments:

File:Sankt Ingenuin und Albuin in Saubach Passionstafeln.jpg

Passion of Jesus (Jesus in the olive garden and Veronica wipes the face of Jesus) on painted tables in the Church of Saint Ingenuinus

Matthew 27:46 ESV  …. “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

As ordinary man, also afraid of death we to shall remember those words Jesus cried out about three in the afternoon in his own Aramaic language. He was calling to Eli, the Elohim his God, Who is also the God of Abraham and the God of Moses. He did not call onto himself but on the Only One Divine Creator.

Remembering tragic events

Today we are going to remember those tragic events and would like to call also

“My God, my God, look upon me;”

We should know that God did not leave his son in the dark. God was willing to take this man as a complete offering, the purest Lamb the world could give as ransom.

We should see that man and should see ourselves placed in his world. We, perhaps may also ask

Why cannot my sinful words reach Thee, Who art my salvation?

some people even might say:

Thou dost not answer, my God, when I cry out to Thee day and night and I am patient still. Thou art there nontheless, dwelling in the holy place Israel’s ancient boast. It was in Thee that our fathers trusted, and Thou didst reward their trust by delivering them. They cried to Thee, and rescue came; no need to be ashamed of such trust as theirs.

Are we not poor worms having no manhood left?

Where in this world we would like to stand

We should question ourselves where in this world we would like to stand and whom we would like to be. Do we want to be of this world or just living in this world where others may consider us a by-word, the laughing-stock of the rabble. Are we wanting to go with everybody keeping up traditions, like having Easter decorations and chocolate eggs searchings in the garden on Easter Sunday, telling children the bells are coming from Rome to throw eggs? (What do those bells and eggs have to do with the resurrection of Christ?)

Do we want to catch sight of us falling to mocking; mouthing out insults, while others toss their heads in scorn. Do we want to accept that Jesus was really a man who really died and not fake his death because God can not die? Are we willing to commit ourselves like Jesus committed himself to his heavenly Father? Are we not afraid that we do not always feel God around us? Are we accepting that we at moments can be week and also like Jesus may wonder why we do not feel God to be with us?

Do you ever have questions why “the Lord” does not come to your rescue and set you as His favourite free? Did you, when you felt abandoned by God, ever ask yourself if you were praising the right god? Have you ever thought if you were worshipping the right god or person or spirit?

These days when we remember the Passion of Jesus Christ, looking back at the time when Jesus had ended all these words which we can find written down in the New Testament, are we willing to place ourselves in the whole story and see the full picture?

Let us look at the disciples who even got more afraid after Jesus had died, but when the Comforter had come, found ways to get over their fear and went out in the world to preach.

Night of remembrance

They also kept remembering the exodus of God His people from slavery, but also remembered the moment that whilst they were at supper in the upper room in Jerusalem, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke: and gave to his disciples, and said:

Take ye, and eat. This is My body. And taking the chalice, He gave thanks, and gave to them, saying: Drink ye all of this. For this is My blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins. And I say to you, I will not drink from henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I shall drink it with you new in the kingdom of My Father.

Let us not be scandalized in Jesus this night. Let us come together tonight to sit down and pray that we may not enter into temptation. We should be aware that the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. We should be stronger than human tradition and show the world where we do want to stand in this world.

Behold, the hour is at hand that we remember that the Son of Man was betrayed into the hands of sinners. Let us go to feel united with the one who was sent by the heavenly Father to save us from all evil. Let us see how then the Scriptures are fulfilled, that thus it happened some two thousand years ago.

We should look at the man who was accused by the chief priests and the elders, who made no answer, so that the procurator wondered exceedingly. Pilate knew that they had delivered Jesus up out of envy. Also his wife sent to him, saying,

“Have nothing to do with that Just Man, for I have suffered many things in a dream today because of Him.”

Who do you want to be and what do you want to believe?

Are you willing to listen to such dreams and such talks from others? Do you want to believe those few people at that time who saw in Jesus the promised Messiah and accepted him as the son of God, the sent one from above? Or do you prefer to follow the same thoughts as the Pharisees and those who accused Christ of saying he was equal with God?

Do you want to be like the two robbers which were crucified with Jesus, one on his right hand and one on his left, who when the passers-by were jeering at him, shaking their heads, were saying,

“Thou Who destroyest the temple, and in three days buildest it up again, save Thyself! If Thou art the Son of God, come down from the cross!”

In like manner, the chief priests with the Scribes and the elders, mocking, said,

“He saved others, Himself He cannot save! If He is the King of Israel, let Him come down now from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now, if He wants Him; for He said, “I am the Son of God.”

What do you need to believe Jesus is really the son of God and not god the son?

Do you feel with Jesus when at the ninth hour (3 p.m.) Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying,

“Eli, Eli, lamma sabacthani.”

That is,

“My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?”

God can not die but on that day Jesus again cried out with a loud voice, and gave up his spirit. And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were rent, and the tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep arose; and coming forth out of the tombs after his resurrection, they came into the holy city, and appeared to many. Now when the centurion, and those who were with him keeping guard over Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that were happening, they were very much afraid, and they said,

“Truly He was the Son of God.”

What do you want more?

Do you need extra wonders or spectacular events before you want to believe who Christ Jesus is? Are would you be willing to accept the stories which God allowed to continue through the ages and to reach many people in many languages?

Are you willing to tell the Most High that you know you need no other gift to set before Him, because the ransom paid by God His son Jeshua by God His Majesty may obtain for us the grace of devotion, and ensure us an eternity of bliss. Through our lord Jesus Christ His Son.

We should know that it is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto the Father of Jesus Christ, who like Jesus looked at Him and praised Him, we also should worship Him as the Only One God Whose Will we want to do.

That we may pray tonight  to the Most High and be thankful that He wanted to accept that offering by His son, so that we can have light and eternal life. To this Most Holy Father Almighty, everlasting God Who didst establish the salvation of mankind, by the death of His beloved son on the tree, that whence death came thence also life might arise again, and that he, who overcame by the tree, by the tree also might be overcome.

Tonight we shall look on a special way to the symbols and place in our minds how that man born in Bethlehem made that our sins be purged away, and our just desires fulfilled.

We shall be looking at Jesus on the donkey, thinking we are no donkey. But perhaps it would not be bad to night to see  ways in which we can identify with him. A colt is meant to work hard, are we? Do we want to carry Jesus and have also all have heavy burdens to bear?
Being a Christian we shall not be liked so much by others. And when we only want to worship One God, we shall be in the minority outvoted by the world.

Are you  prepared to take your humble position in this world like Jesus took his position, only willing to do the Will of his Father?

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Preceding article: Entrance of a king to question our position #1 Coming in the Name of the Lord

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Find also to read:

  1. The meek one riding on an ass
  2. The son of David and the first day of the feast of unleavened bread
  3. Importance of the only proper name of God
  4. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  5. Hashem השם, Hebrew for “the Name”
  6. Titles of God beginning with the Aleph in Hebrew
  7. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name (Video)
  8. The Divine name of the Creator (Video)
  9. Use of /Gebruik van Jehovah or/of Yahweh in Bible Translations/Bijbel vertalingen
  10. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  11. People Seeking for God 5 Bread of life
  12. People Seeking for God 7 The Lord and lords
  13. Lord and owner
  14. About a man who changed history of humankind
  15. Lord or Yahuwah, Yeshua or Yahushua
  16. Who was Jesus?
  17. The Beginning of the life of Jesus Christ
  18. Jesus begotten Son of God #14 Beloved Preminent Son and Mediator originating in Mary
  19. Nazarene Commentary Luke 1:67-80 – Zechariah’s Prophecy
  20. Jesus begotten Son of God #16 Prophet to be heard
  21. Jesus begotten Son of God #17 Adam, Eve, Mary and Christianity’s central figure
  22. Jesus begotten Son of God #18 Believing in inhuman or human person
  23. Jesus begotten Son of God #19 Compromising fact
  24. Jesus is the Son of God but Not God the Son
  25. Yeshua a man with a special personality
  26. A man with an outstanding personality
  27. An unblemished and spotless lamb foreknown
  28. No Other Name (But Jesus)
  29. Death of Christ on the day of preparation
  30. Impaled until death overtook him
  31. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ
  32. A fact of History or just a fancy Story
  33. Why do we need a ransom?
  34. Ransom for all
  35. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  36. Servant of his Father
  37. Only one God
  38. God of gods
  39. The Trinity – true or false?
  40. The Trinity – the Truth
  41. Altered to fit a Trinityod of gods
  42. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  43. Christianity without the Trinity
  44. Sitting at the right hand of God
  45. Human Nature: What does the Bible teach?
  46. Your Sins Are Forgiven
  47. God is my refuge and my fortress in Him I will trust

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Additional reading:

  1. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  2. Trinity: A False Doctrine of a False Church
  3. Part 2) God is not a Trinity
  4. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  5. Unitarianism and the Bible of the Holy Trinity
  6. Trinity: The Truth about Matthew 28:19 & 1 John 5:7
  7. Anyone Who Goes Too Far and Does Not Abide in the Teaching of Christ, Does Not Have God
  8. Is Jesus God?
  9. If the Father is the “only true God” (John 17:3) , does that mean that Jesus is a false god?
  10. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
  11. Massacre of children leaves many asking, ‘Where’s God?’

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    We see Jesus looking at each of us with great tenderness and compassion. We hear him promising forgiveness and eternal life to anyone who turns to him in repentance. We see a Messiah who loves us unconditionally, who loves us enough to endure and conquer not only our sins but death itself.
  • “The Emptied-Out God” (stgregoryschurch.typepad.com)
    We call this Sunday “the Sunday of the Passion” as if the passion of our Lord began with his entrance into Jerusalem. But in his letter to the Philippians (2:5-11)
  • Hosanna! (kswptim.wordpress.com)
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  • Jesus is my Joy, Jesus is true peace (jesusmygodforever.wordpress.com)
    There are so many people in this world who just don’t know Jesus, and it’s sad because he truly yearns for all of us to be in a close relationship with him, he yearns to save all of us from death, destruction, hell. He yearns for our days to be filled with a great peace that no man can obtain without Jesus giving his peace to them. No matter what anyone says how happy they are or how peaceful their hearts are if they don’t know Jesus  as their Lord then they cannot know true peace.
  • Palm Sunday, a day to reflect (endtimebibleprophecy.wordpress.com)
    The day that our Lord and Savior would ride into Jerusalem to celebrate Passover, while riding on the back of a donkey, the King of kings, the Lord of lords.  Coming in peace, love, and hope.  Humbling Himself before the nation of Israel.
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    Many did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah spoken of in the Old Testament.  He did not meet the expectations of whom they believed their King should be.  He did not come with great force and to conquer their enemies.  But instead came in quiet and peacefully.  Yet, many today still do not believe that Jesus is Lord.
  • Palm Sunday 2014. At the Name of Jesus Every Knee Shall Bow. St. Matthew 21. 1-11 (deprofundisclamaviadtedomine.wordpress.com)
    The crowd reads Jesus’ actions as proclaiming that He is the King. And even the people of Jerusalem pay attention, the citizens of the city the Lord chose for His dwelling place, the temple. Living in such a holy place, the people of Jerusalem aren’t easily impressed by people claiming to be prophets. But today, on Palm Sunday, when the crowds of Passover pilgrims raise the festal shout of salvation, they ask, “Who is this?” (21:10) And the answer comes back, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.” (21:11)
  • Palm Sunday-hymn for Today (berry20nice.wordpress.com)
  • The Gates of Jerusalem (christinesunderland.com)
    The great festivals of the year mark our time on earth, our passage, our pilgrimage from birth to death. Where was I last Palm Sunday? Where will I be Palm Sunday 2015? We mark time with festivals, for time is limited, making it precious; numbered days are valuable days. Was I journeying closer to God or away from him?
  • Palm Sunday – “o Gates, Lift High Your Heads” (prayers4reparation.wordpress.com)
    He, the Lord of hosts, he is the king of glory.
    Hosanna in the highest!
  • Hosanna to Hallelujah (my52sundays.wordpress.com)
    From ancient times Christians have brought palm branches home from church on Palm Sunday.  Some place them on the wall behind a cross or sacred picture.  Farmers would bury palm branches in the corners of their fields.
    As time went on, many people added a twist to this tradition by weaving the palms into a cross, a picture frame, or a flower. Some of these were very elaborate, requiring considerable craftsmanship which was passed on in families from generation to generation.The holiest week of the year begins today.  But the world doesn’t stop.  Everything goes on, all the regular TV programs, the regular work schedule, income taxes, all of our daily chores.  So…if I want this to be a “holy week” what do I do?  I decide.

 

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Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God

Nearly 2 000 years ago

Nearly two thousand years ago a man preaching in the desert saw his cousin coming near. John the Baptist, perhaps not knowing so much about his cousin, understood how he came unto earth and what his position was.

English: John the Baptist baptizing Christ

John the Baptist baptizing Christ (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

John seeing Jesus coming toward him yelled out

“Here he is, God’s Passover Lamb! He forgives the sins of the world! This is the man I’ve been talking about, ‘the one who comes after me but is really ahead of me.’

(Jesus was born or came into existence after John the Baptist, but had his function already planned by God long before John the Baptist, Isaiah, Isaac and Abraham.) John the Baptist knew that his task was been to get Israel ready to recognize him as the God-Revealer.

” (29)  On the next day Yoḥanan saw יהושע {Jehsua} coming toward him, and said, “See, the Lamb of Elohim who takes away the sin of the world!{1} {Footnote: 1Mt. 1:21, Titus 2:14, 1 John 3:5 & 8.}  (30)  “This is He of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who has become before me, for He was before me.’ {1 Footnote: 1See v. 15.}  (31)  “And I did not know Him, but that He might be revealed to Yisra’ĕl, therefore I came immersing in water.” ” (John 1:29-31 The Scriptures 1998+)

Jesus was placed by God in the womb of Miriam (Mary/Maria) to come on earth as the fulfilment of the Word of God spoken in the garden of Eden, providing Adam and Eve a solution for what they had done.

Baptism with water and spirit

At that time in the river Jordan God Himself led His Voice be heard to all who stood around John the Baptist baptising Jesus. And the Voice made known that it was the son of God who stood there in the water. Still two thousand years later many do not want to accept that it was the “son of God” who stood there to start his official adult life of witnessing for God.

Jan Brueghel the Elder, John the Baptist preaching

Jan Brueghel the Elder, John the Baptist preaching (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

John had come to baptise with water, giving the people a good bath and scrubbing sins from their life so they could get a fresh start with God. John clinched his witness that he watched the Spirit, like a dove flying down out of the sky, making himself at home in him, and that The One who authorized him to baptise with water told him, ‘The One on whom you see the Spirit come down and stay, this One will baptise with the Holy Spirit.’ As many prophets before him, Jesus was a man who was willing to give himself in the hands of the Creator God, who had told mankind that he was His son.

” (16)  And having been immersed, יהושע {Jehsua} went up immediately from the water, and see, the heavens were opened, and He saw the Spirit of Elohim descending like a dove and coming upon Him,  (17)  and see, a voice out of the heavens, saying, “This is My Son, the Beloved, in whom I did delight.”” (Matthew 3:16-17 The Scriptures 1998+)

God’s Passover Lamb to be seen

The people could see the one who John the Baptist called “God’s Passover Lamb.” There were two disciples of John who heard him and went after Jesus. Jesus looked over his shoulder and said to them, “What are you after?” They said, “Rabbi” (which means “Teacher“), “where are you staying?” He replied, “Come along and see for yourself.” They came, saw where he was living, and ended up staying with him for the day but also got to see what Jesus could mean for them. They believed they had found the “Messiah” (that is, “Christ“). (John 1:29-42) From that day onwards they kept their eyes on Jesus, and got to know more on the relation of Jesus and his Father the Only One True. they also came to understand that this rabbi could be the send one of God by whom they, and we, can come closer to God, the author and finisher of our faith. In Jesus they could find and can we find peace, forgiveness, rest, grace. They where willing to see what had happened and were going to see more incomprehensible thing the three years afterwards.

Second Adam also of flesh and blood

There may be many gods in the world, but there is only One True God Divine Creator, and That God is not comparable to any human being except to His son. God is Spirit (John 4:24) but His sons are human beings. His first son and daughter where the first Adam and Eve. But those first creations turned against their Creator. At that time, in the beginning of Creation, the Creator took care that a solution for their sin was given to the world. God was prepared to make a second Adam, who would bring salvation and as such would be called the “Christ” or “Messiah“. In him people could once again see that all people are created in the image of God. Though all children which came after the first Adam received the deficiencies from their forefathers. Being created straight ahead from the Source of Life, Jehovah God, the second Adam, would receive the opportunity to prove human kind that a human being could follow the Will of the Most High, and could stay pure and un-blamed.

Not able to be seen

God can not be seen by man or he would die, but Jesus could be seen by many. Jesus like any other man could be tempted, though God can not be tempted nor sin. Jesus could sin but did not.

” (20)  But He said, “You are unable to see My face, for no man does see Me and live.”” (Exodus 33:20 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (18)  No one has ever seen Elohim.1 The only brought-forth Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He did declare.2 Footnotes: 1See 5:37, 6:46, 1 John 4:12. 2The pre-existent Son declared, and was the One who appeared to men.” (John 1:18 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (24)  “Elohim is Spirit, and those who worship Him need to worship in spirit and truth.”” (John 4:24 The Scriptures 1998+)

Revelation to be seen

What we can see is what God reveals to the world and let us to be seen. Jesus declared his Father and made Him clear for all to understand what He want from us and How He thinks and works. Jesus was prepared to listen to the Voice of his Father, his God and the God of Abraham, making this voice know all over the world.

” (24)  and said, ‘See, יהוה {Jehovah} our Elohim has shown us His esteem and His greatness, and we have heard His voice from the midst of the fire. Today we have seen that Elohim speaks with man – and he lives!” (Deuteronomy 5:24 The Scriptures 1998+)

Flesh blood and bones, human and ghost or spirit

At the river Jordan people could see that God was in their midst and declared Jesus to be His son. Ghost has no flesh, blood nor bones, but Jesus had this all. That Jesus was no spirit, even not after he had died he proved to his disciples when he came under their midst and showed his wounds.

” (30)  And it came to be, when He sat at the table with them, having taken the bread, He blessed, and having broken, He was giving it to them.  (31)  And their eyes were opened and they recognised Him. And He disappeared from their sight.  (32)  And they said to each other, “Was not our heart burning within us as He was speaking to us on the way, and as He was opening the Scriptures to us?”  (33)  And rising up that same hour they returned to Yerushalayim, and found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together,  (34)  saying, “The Master was truly raised, and has appeared to Shim?on!”  (35)  And they related what took place on the way, and how He was recognised by them in the breaking of the bread.  (36)  And as they were saying this, יהושע {Jehsua} Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you.”  (37)  And being startled and frightened, they thought they had seen a spirit.  (38)  And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?  (39)  “See My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.”  (40)  And saying this, He showed them His hands and His feet.  (41)  And while they were still not believing for joy, and marvelling, He said to them, “Have you any food here?”  (42)  And they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb.  (43)  And taking it He ate in their presence.  (44)  And He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all have to be filled that were written in the Torah of Mosheh and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”  (45)  Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures,  (46)  and said to them, “Thus it has been written, and so it was necessary for the Messiah to suffer and to rise again from the dead the third day,  (47)  and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His Name to all nations, beginning at Yerushalayim.  (48)  “And you are witnesses of these matters.  (49)  “And see, I am sending the Promise of My Father upon you, but you are to remain in the city of Yerushalayim until you are clothed with power from on high.”  (50)  And He led them out as far as Bĕyth Anyah, and lifting up His hands He blessed them.  (51)  And it came to be, while He was blessing them, that He was parted from them and was taken up into the heaven.  (52)  And they, having bowed down to Him, returned to Yerushalayim with great joy,  (53)  and were continually in the Set-apart Place praising and blessing Elohim. Amĕn.” (Luke 24:30-53 The Scriptures 1998+)

Those who have not seen the son of the Non-seen

After Jesus had died the apostles had seen him again. We never have seen him but we should believe those who have seen him and those who like us can not see God but did see the son of God, יהושע {Jehsua} Jesus, the one who is the Immanuel and Messiah. We also can get the Ghost God being part of us like it was being part of Christ. By letting Him enter ourselves we shall become transformed, but we shall never become God, like Jesus also was not God. We do have to become like Christ like Jesus was like God united one in spirit. Putting on the armour of Christ and the armour of God did not make the people in the old times God nor shall it make us  to become Christ nor God.

After and of the flesh and dwelling within

In the world we can see many people who are after the flesh, do mind the things of the flesh. We who believe in Christ Jesus, to be the Saviour should be after the Spirit, do mind the things of the Spirit. Jesus did also things of the Spirit like we should do. He also told us to become worthy children of God, having God enter our hearts and to put away our carnally mind because that is death. We are assured that to be spiritually minded is life and peace; because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, because it cannot be.  Jesus learned his followers that they who are in the flesh cannot please God. He also told many parables so people could easily understand what it mean to be in Christ or to be in God, to be with God, to be for God and to do the Will of God. Those who want to do like Christ, not his or their own will, but the Will of God, can receive the Holy Spirit and as such be not in the flesh, but in the spirit if the Spirit of God truly dwells within you. Jesus had the Spirit of God dwelling in him. We should have the Spirit of God dwelling in us likewise. This dwelling of the Spirit though shall not make us, like it did not with Christ, make us the God eternal. We shall stay man of flesh and blood like Jesus was a man of flesh and blood. We also shall not escape the penalty of the garden of Eden. Jesus also did not escape that death spoken out by His Father. Jesus really died whilst God can not die. It is only by accepting that Jesus was really a man of flesh and blood who really died,that we can give respectful notice to what Jesus really did; he gave his life for the sins of many, as a ransom. Those who take Jesus to God, who can not die, make a farce of his suffering and his death.

Having spirit of Christ

Now if any man does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to him.  And if Christ is within you, the body is dead because of sin: but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of Him who raised our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead dwells within you, so He Who raised Jesus Christ from the dead will also quicken our mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwells within us.  But therefore we do have to accept Jesus his anointment and offer as Lamb of God. We clearly have to see and understand the relationship between the Father and son, who now sits at the right hand of his Father to be a mediator between God and man.

Living in spirit

Those who have faith in the actions Jesus undertook and believe he was a messenger of the Most High are not indebted to the flesh to live after the flesh.  For if we live after the flesh, we will die in flesh and totality: but if we, through the Spirit, subdue the deeds of the body, we shall live this life in spirit. It does not mean we shall not feel any pain, or we shall not have to face difficulties and temptations. Like Jesus encountered many difficulties and temptations, we also shall have to face them and the natural death. But allowing the Spirit to enter in our hearts we may count on it that He shall enable us to endure whatever we need to endure. Those who are led by the Spirit of God, are the sons of God, for they have not received the spirit of bondage, to be in fear again; but they have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby they can cry onto God like Christ called on his Father: “Abba“, “Avon”, “Father“, “our Father“.  And this Spirit bears witness to our spirit, that we are the children of God:  and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint heirs with Jesus Christ; so that if we suffer with him, we shall also be glorified with him.

” (5)  For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the matters of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the matters of the Spirit.  (6)  For the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace.  (7)  Because the mind of the flesh is enmity towards Elohim, for it does not subject itself1 to the Torah of Elohim2, neither indeed is it able, Footnotes: 1Or does not obey. 2John 15:5, 1 John 4:4, 1 John 3:9, 1 John 5:18.  (8)  and those who are in the flesh are unable to please Elohim.  (9)  But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of Elohim dwells in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Messiah, this one is not His.  (10)  And if Messiah is in you, the body is truly dead on account of sin, but the Spirit is life on account of righteousness.  (11)  And if the Spirit of Him who raised יהושע {Jehsua} from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Messiah from the dead shall also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit dwelling in you.  (12)  So then, brothers, we are not debtors to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.  (13)  For if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you shall live.  (14)  For as many as are led by the Spirit of Elohim, these are sons of Elohim.  (15)  For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”  (16)  The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of Elohim,  (17)  and if children, also heirs – truly heirs of Elohim, and co-heirs with Messiah, if indeed we suffer with Him, in order that we also be exalted together.” (Romans 8:5-17 The Scriptures 1998+)

Presenting our body to allow God to enter in us, doing His Will

By the mercies of God we should present our bodies a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, by means of reasonable service. Though we can not see Christ nor God, we should put faith in him who gave his soul (=his full being) to his Father who is also our Father to Whom we should pray.  Jesus lived in this world but was not of this world, so we also should not imitate the way of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of our minds, becoming as brothers and sisters in Christ, that you may discern what is that good and acceptable, and perfect will of God. As Christ also did not want to do his will, we also should only want to do God His Will.

” (10)  let Your reign come, let Your desire be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (41)  And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and falling on His knees He was praying,  (42)  saying, “Father, if it be Your counsel, remove this cup from Me. Yet not My desire, but let Yours be done.”” (Luke 22:41-42 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (34)  יהושע {Jehsua} said to them, “My food is to do the desire of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work.” (John 4:34 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (30)  “Of Myself I am unable to do any matter. As I hear, I judge, and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own desire, but the desire of the Father who sent Me.” (John 5:30 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (38)  “Because I have come down out of the heaven, not to do My own desire, but the desire of Him who sent Me.” (John 6:38 The Scriptures 1998+)

” (7)  “Then I said, ‘See, I come – in the roll of the book it has been written concerning Me – to do Your desire, O Elohim.’ ”  (8)  Saying above, “Slaughter and meal offering, and burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor delighted in,” which are offered according to the Torah,  (9)  then He said, “See, I come to do Your desire, O Elohim.” He takes away the first to establish the second.  (10)  By that desire we have been set apart through the offering of the body of יהושע {Jehsua} Messiah once for all.” (Heb 10:7-10 The Scriptures 1998+)

To see and understand the sending of the son of God

We should see and understand the sending of the son of God, Jesus Christ, because we can see what is written about him in the Book of books. We should see the desire this man had and we should see the desires of his Father the Divine Creator God Who does not like to have pleasure in, sacrifices, offerings, burnt offerings, and sacrifices for sin’ (offerings regularly made under the Law). That God, whom Jesus considered to be his Father and our Father was willing to take the offering of this Nazarene Jew as the token of reconciliation. Because Jesus wanted and succeeded into doing the will of his Father the former sacrifices were set aside to be replaced by the latter, the offer of the son Jeshua, Jesus the Christ or Messiah.  And it is in the fulfilment of the will of God that we have been purified by the sacrifice, once and for all, of the body of Jesus Christ.

See things and scrutinize everything

We should see all things and search them. We should come to see what is given to the apostles and followers of Jesus Christ, to all of us who are willing to follow the teachings of the rabbi Jesus, not to think of ourselves beyond what we ought to think; but to think soberly, every man according to the measure of faith which God has distributed to him.  For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same function,  So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.  Being in the body of Christ shall not make us Christ nor god or God. but being in the body of Christ we will be entrusted with many special gifts, differing according to the grace that is given to us; some have the gift of prophecy, according to the measure of faith,  some have the gift of ministration, in his ministry; and some of teaching, in his teaching.

” (1)  I call upon you, therefore, brothers, through the compassion of Elohim, to present your bodies a living offering – set-apart, well-pleasing to Elohim – your reasonable worship.  (2)  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you prove what is that good and well-pleasing and perfect desire of Elohim.  (3)  For I say, through the favour which has been given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he should think, but to think soberly, as Elohim has given to each a measure of belief.  (4)  For as we have many members in one body, but all members do not have the same function,  (5)  so we, the many, are one body in Messiah, and members each one of one another.  (6)  Now having different gifts, according to the favour which was given to us, let us use them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of belief;  (7)  if serving, in the serving; or he who is teaching, in the teaching;  (8)  or he who encourages, in the encouragement; or he who is sharing, in sincerity; he who is leading, in diligence; he who shows compassion, joyously.” (Romans 12:1-8 The Scriptures 1998+)

A body with blood and a spirit without blood

We should come to learn to see that Body of Christ so that we can see the preparedness of others also willing to see the gift of God, His Grace and acceptance of the offer of His son Jesus Christ.

” (16)  to be a servant of יהושע {Jehsua} Messiah to the gentiles, with the priestly duty of bringing the Good News of Elohim, so that the offering of the gentiles becomes acceptable, set apart by the Set-apart Spirit.” (Romans 15:16 The Scriptures 1998+)

The world should get to see those who are willing to see the Most High in their minds, according to the Spirit or Force of God. By willing to open our mind to God’s Force, the Holy Spirit shall be willing to enter in our soul (=our being) and will strengthen us in our faith in Christ, the son of God, making us partakers of his offering, being cleansed by his blood (the Blood of Christ).

Knowing that a Spirit has no blood, we are aware that it was really a man of blood and flesh and bones, who did not have his bones broken, but had his blood flown out of his body.

” (28)  After this, יהושע {Jehsua}, knowing that all had been accomplished, in order that the Scripture might be accomplished, said, “I thirst!”  (29)  A bowl of sour wine stood there, and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and held it to His mouth.  (30)  So when יהושע {Jehsua} took the sour wine He said, “It has been accomplished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.  (31)  Therefore, since it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the stake on the Sabbath – for that Sabbath was a high one – the Yehuḏim asked Pilate to have their legs broken, and that they be taken away.  (32)  Therefore the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who was impaled with Him,  (33)  but when they came to יהושע {Jehsua} and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs.  (34)  But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and instantly blood and water came out.  (35)  And he who has seen has witnessed, and his witness is true. And he knows that he is speaking the truth, in order that you might believe.  (36)  For this took place in order for the Scripture to be filled: “Not one of His bones shall be broken.”  (37)  And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced.”” (John 19:28-37 The Scriptures 1998+)

Acceptance step in the good direction

Let us look on him whom they pierced and believe who he was and what he did. By accepting Christ we are one step in the good direction to find God. Once we want to accept Jesus as the son of God who offered himself for our sins, we can continue on that path he prepared for us. Listening to the parables he told we can come to understand the way his Father thinks and handles.

God had poured out on the house of David the fulfilment of His Word that His Word could become reality and could come into the flesh (figuratively and in the person of His son Jesus Christ), and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication so that those who are willing to see and believe will look at him whom other humans have pierced; and they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for his only son, and will grieve bitterly for him, as one grieves for his firstborn. (Zechariah 12:10, John 1:1)

To be able to find God we first have to open our mind and to be prepared to allow God His Spirit to enter in us. It is God Who calls, but we should allow Him to call us and be prepared to hear His Voice.

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Preceding article: Finding God amid all the religious externals

Next: People Seeking for God

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Please also do find to read:

  1. Creator of heaven and earth and everything around יהוה
  2. Only One God
  3. God of gods
  4. How are we sure God exists?
  5. Apologetics (10) – The Hard Questions: Does God Really Exist? Introducing the Teleological Argument
  6. Bible and Science (22): Bible or Science
  7. Seeking for God
  8. The Faith of Abraham
  9. Having Truth Decay?
  10. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name
  11. God’s promises
  12. God Helper and Deliverer
  13. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #1 Creator and His Prophets
  14. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #11 Prayer #9 Making the Name Holy
  15. Let God’s promises shine on your problems
  16. God should be your hope
  17. Walk Humbly With God
  18. Finding Strength in God
  19. Devotional – The Way to the Father (18): The Lord’s Prayer
  20. He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
  21. The one who makes us well and gives life
  22. Jesus begotten Son of God #17 Adam, Eve, Mary and Christianity’s central figure
  23. Jesus spitting image of his father
  24. Reasons that Jesus was not God
  25. Jesus and his God
  26. The high calling of God in Christ Jesus
  27. Jesus Messiah
  28. On the Nature of Christ
  29. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  30. How is it that Christ pleased God so perfectly?
  31. Wishing to do the will of God
  32. A Messiah to die
  33. Jesus memorial
  34. No person has greater love than this one who surrendered his soul in behalf of his friends
  35. The redemption of man by Christ Jesus
  36. The day Jesus died
  37. Impaled until death overtook him
  38. Jesus three days in hell
  39. Christ has indeed been raised from the dead
  40. Through Christ’s death you can be adopted as a child of God
  41. Jesus is risen
  42. In the death of Christ, the son of God, is glorification
  43. Jesus begotten Son of God #11 Existence and Genesis Raising up
  44. Seeing Jesus
  45. Faith a commitment to the promises of Christ and to to the demands of Christ
  46. Jesus begotten Son of God #6 Anointed Son of God, Adam and Abraham
  47. Jesus begotten Son of God #19 Compromising fact
  48. Wishing to do the will of God
  49. Ember and light the ransomed of Jehovah
  50. Ransom for all
  51. An unblemished and spotless lamb foreknown
  52. The Song of The Lamb #5 Revelation 5
  53. The Song of The Lamb #8 Revelation 15 Lessons for us today
  54. Christ having glory
  55. Sitting at the right hand of God
  56. One mediator
  57. One Mediator between God and man
  58. No Other Name (But Jesus)
  59. Why do we need a ransom?
  60. The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ
  61. Two states of existence before God
  62. True Hope
  63. Epitome of the one faith
  64. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother
  65. The Word being a quality or aspect of God Himself
  66. Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:1, 2 – Factual Data
  67. Nazarene Commentary Mark 1:1-8 – The Beginning of the Good News
  68. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:1-6 – A Wilderness Baptist Prepares the Way
  69. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:7-12 – Opposition and Two Baptisms
  70. Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:3-6 – John Preaches Baptism of Repentance
  71. He has given us the Pneuma, the force, from Him
  72. The radiance of God’s glory and the counsellor
  73. Incomplete without the mind of God
  74. The Spirit of God brings love, hope and freedom
  75. The Spirit of God imparts love,inspires hope, and gives liberty
  76. Corruption in our translations !
  77. Book of books
  78. Let us become nothing, and Christ everything
  79. Parts of the body of Christ
  80. With God All Things Are Possible
  81. Wishing to do the will of God

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Additional reading:

  1. God and gods
  2. “Disciple, disciple, what do you see?” “I see Jesus looking at me.”
  3. The underlying truth in John 1:1
  4. John 1:1c Primer
  5. Basic John 1:1c
  6. Seven Lessons for John 1:1c
  7. The “Definite” John 1:1
  8. The Divine Name of God: Spoken by Jesus and Early True Christians
  9. Hebrews 1:8 – “Thy Throne, O God”

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  • Preparing the Way (graceofourlord.com)
    God, he tells them, can raise up children of Abraham from the stones present around them. In other words, it is not enough – God is not so impressed with their pedigree.
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    Although baptism in some form did exist before John the Baptist received his calling from God, it was not a baptism of repentance, nor was it for the forgiveness of sins. There was no real forgiveness of sins under the Law of Moses because, as Paul said, it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Hebrews 10:1-4). There was washing for purification, as first implemented with Aaron and his sons (Exodus 29:4, Leviticus 16:23-24), and for remedy of defilement (Numbers 19). And at some point (though not Biblically required), baptism (immersion in water) was added to circumcision as a requirement for Gentile proselytes to be converted to Judaism.
  • He may be made known to Israel (twocatholicfriends.wordpress.com)
    Each of the prophets who came before Christ came to fulfill a particular mission, they pointed to the coming of the messiah. Isaiah’s prophecy of the restoration of israel and salvation reaching the end of the earth links his time and that of John the baptist’s by its fulfillment because it was John the baptist who showed this light of God which would reach the end of the earth to the world. First, with his disciples, whom he fashioned their waiting for the messiah. He did not know who the messiah was, but God revealed it to him by the outpouring of the Holy spirit by the baptism of our Lord which we celebrated last sunday; this he used to testify to the crowd of the sonship of Jesus.
  • Jesus and John the Baptist (larrycourson.wordpress.com)
    In Matthew 13 and 14 Jesus is rejected by the people of Nazareth where he grew up as no one special. They said he was just one of them.
  • John 1:29-42 – 19th January 2014 (rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com)
    John the Baptist expected his listeners to recall pictures from the Old Testament; the lamb provided by God for Abraham to slaughter, the lamb of Isaiah 53, led to the slaughter for the sins of God’s people; the Passover Lamb from Exodus.  The word “lamb,” for John’s listeners connected strongly with words like “sin” or “atonement” – the way in which we can be reconciled with God despite our wrongdoing.
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    Lamb of God, Baptiser with the Spirit, Son of God, Messiah – John, the Gospel writer’s names for Jesus. John wants us to carry these names with us as we read his Gospel. It is as though he says to us, “You will only understand my message fully if you realise that this is what I want to show you. Here is the one who by his life and death fulfils these roles and in doing so brings hope.” As we read the Gospels let’s use these names to inform our reading and to help us understand for ourselves just who Jesus is: Lamb of God, Baptiser with the Spirit, Son of God, Messiah.
  • Engaging the Gospel – John 1:29-34 (ubiquelucet.wordpress.com)
    By proclaiming Jesus as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world,” St. John the Baptist identifies him as the fulfillment of Scripture.

    He “reveals that Jesus is at the same time the suffering Servant [prophesied by Isaiah] who silently allows himself to be led to the slaughter and who bears the sin of the multitudes, and also the Paschal Lamb, the symbol of Israel’s redemption at the first Passover” (Catechism paragraph 608).

    Moreover, the Spirit’s coming upon Jesus is an explicit mark of the Messiah.

  • God Demands a Response to Jesus (barrierbreakingenterprises.com)
    The fact of the matter is some of us are just  too cautious about changing when clearly the time for change has come.  We procrastinate just because procrastination is what we do.  But when you meet Jesus, Jesus calls for action, immediate, swift, decisive action.  Either you love him or you don’t but you can’t just sit around and think about it.  This morning Jesus is looking for radical disciples, those who will throw caution to the wind and follow him with their whole hearts.
  • The Passover Lamb (james1948.wordpress.com)
    When it was time for God to deliver the Israelites from bondage in Egypt, He established a way for the people to always memorialize their deliverance by instituting the Lord’s Passover. Each household was to shed the blood of a lamb that was without blemish and paint the blood on the doorposts of the home. Then, the lamb was to be roasted and eaten with unleavened bread and bitter herbs by everyone in the home, as they stood, ready to evacuate Egypt. That night, God preserved the firstborn of every home who had observed the Passover and delivered the Israelites from bondage.

    Jesus is the fulfillment of the Passover. He became what the Passover represented, God’s salvation through the shed blood of an innocent Lamb.

  • The Truth Through John Part 2 (soulfulcuriosity.wordpress.com)
    God is very detailed…everything has a purpose…more than we will ever know this side of heaven.

    Does studying God’s word bring you Joy?  I sure hope it does.

  • Sunday Devotional: John 1:6-8 (journeythereandbackagain.wordpress.com)
    Here we see John (the disciple) talk about John the Baptist.  John the Baptist was a forerunner to Jesus.  He was one who was sent by God to prepare the way for Jesus’ earthly ministry.  That was his calling.  He was to be a witness.  He was to point others to the light (Jesus).
  • Pastor Karl’s Challenge (brentwoodbiblechurch.wordpress.com)
    We must not think of Jesus, however, as the offspring of God the Father. Because according to Galatians 4:4, when the Father sent Jesus into the world, He already was the Son of God. The Father sent forth His Son! If He already was the Son of God, then He did not become the Son of God through conception and birth. Rather, the Son of God became a true human being in the conception.

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