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THE ONENESS OF THE FATHER AND THE SON, #528

"Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (JOH 5:19)

The Jews’ determination to kill Jesus for healing on the Sabbath and for making Himself equal with God was based upon the law according to human reasoning. In fact, in the old law (under the letter of the law) breaking the Sabbath was a capital crime, but so was blasphemy. So when they took upon themselves to kill Jesus as a blasphemer and as a Sabbath-breaker (according to all their human reasoning and logic) they were doing so according to the law.

The Jews, saying that Jesus said "that God was his Father, making himself equal with God," (verse 18), were perfectly correct. He had exactly said that in verse 17. "But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work." He was making Himself as the Son of God. So their accusation was not incorrect.

The Lord Jesus has said that if you and I will deny Him before men that He will deny us before the Father, which is in heaven. He could not deny Himself, either. So what did He do? He answered, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do." He is showing what He means when He says, "My Father worketh hitherto, and I work."

Jesus was confronted with the proposition of denying Himself. He answered nothing to all the accusations that were brought against Him.

"And there arose certain, and bare false witness against him, saying, We heard him say, I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands. But neither so did their witness agree together. And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, saying, Answerest thou nothing? What is it which these witness against thee? But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed? [Notice that He did not defend Himself in any manner against all the false accusations that were brought against Him, but neither could He deny Himself.] And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. [To His accusers, which He knew would bring about His own crucifixion, He could not deny Himself.] Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, What need we any further witnesses? Ye have heard the blasphemy: what think ye? And they all condemned him to be guilty of death. And some began to spit on him, and to cover his face, and to buffet him, and to say unto him, Prophesy: and the servants did strike him with the palms of their hands." (MAR 14:57-65)

All this He gave no response to, but when it came to the question, "Art thou the Christ," He said, "I am." This is in effect what we see in our text here. When the Lord Jesus was accused of making Himself equal with God, He made no attempt to deny it. Our Saviour makes no attempt to deny this accusation, but answers them with, "Verily, verily," that is to say "Amen! Amen!"

The Greek word from which this word Verily, verily is taken is "A’-men." It is the same Greek word, which is translated as "Amen" at the conclusion of the Lord’s Prayer in MAT 6:13. So when they accused Him of making Himself equal with God, His answer was, "Amen! Amen!" He made no attempt to deny it.

The conclusion of the Lord’s Prayer confirms that the posture of His heart toward God is not selfish. His whole response was one of unconditional surrender and submission to the will of His Father. The conclusion of the Lord’s Prayer has the Father’s glory as its motive.

So it was when He said, "Amen! Amen!" He did not exalt Himself above the Father, but immediately came back to concede that what He saw the Father do, that He does. He can do nothing of Himself but what He sees the Father do. He does not set Himself above the Father; He sets Himself as equal with the Father. His Father’s glory is His motive.

Therefore, the Lord’s Prayer closes with a doxology. It closes with holy reverence to the Father’s will and with praise. Notice that when the disciples asked the Lord to teach them to pray, the conclusion of the prayer was a doxology with a holy reverence to the Father’s will and with praise. We see this in MAT 6:13b. "For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen."

When He is saying, "For thine is the kingdom," He is telling you and I of the need of submitting to that kingly authority, to the authority of His Word, to the authority of God, that He has all authority.

"For thine is the kingdom" speaks of present tense. It doesn’t say, "Thine was the kingdom," or "Thine shall be the kingdom," it says "thine is the kingdom." This is teaching that you and I, in this life, must come in to that kingdom. We must have that Kingdom of God in us. What does that mean but that you and I live a life of unconditional surrender to the kingship of God (which is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost). We live in unconditional surrender to that kingship. His Kingdom is from eternity, it is to eternity, and it is here today!

The Kingdom of God is within you. It isn’t something that comes with observation or with great power and great commotion; it is that which is in you, which is a heart and a mind that is in unconditional surrender to His will.

This is what Jesus is teaching us in our text. He’s teaching us that He, the Son of God, became incarnate; He came in our human nature and He now demonstrates the purpose of God’s creation in creating man: that He is in unconditional surrender to the will of God.

This Greek word Amen means "sure or true, faithful, steadfast, trusting or certain, it shall truly or certainly be, or so let it be." So when the Jews accused Him of making Himself equal with God, He was saying, "Surely, not only shall it be, so is it, and so let it be," that from eternity to eternity He is God.

The Greek word Amen expresses a fervent and longing desire, "So let it be." His answer to these ungodly Jews was, "So let it be." Not only that He claimed to be equal with God, but so let it be, so is it, so shall it be. Our Saviour’s expression "Verily, verily," that is, "Amen, amen," in our text expresses Christ’s fervency and faith in the kingdom and power of God the Father for His glory.

Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (JOH 5:19)

He is saying that He is equal with the Father yet He can do nothing of Himself, and neither does the Father do anything of Himself. Without the Son the Father does nothing, but without the Father the Son can do nothing. They are co-equal; they are one. There is no diversity of power or of will between the Father and the Son. They are of one will; they are of one mind; they are of one purpose; they are of one decree.

Blind humanism wants to use the expression, "The Son can do nothing of himself," as a concession of some weakness in Christ. There are many who teach a weakness of Christ in His human nature, as having no more strength, or no more ability, than a human being. They want to use this as a concession that this is due to His human nature, but this did not mean His ability was limited. When the Lord Jesus says, "the Son can do nothing of himself," He was not making a concession of a limited ability - no such thing!

PHI 2:7, "But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men," does not mean that the Saviour was reduced to all the limitations of our human nature. When He says He "was made in the likeness of men," He does not mean that He took upon Himself and took with Him all the limitations of our human nature. That is not what He’s saying.

Instead of pointing to an imperfection in either His person or power, these Scriptures bring out the very perfection of His subjection to His Father’s will in our human nature as our substitute.

For you and I to be able to live eternally, we must render perfect subjection to the will of the Father, and because of the fall we have not the ability to do this. Therefore, we need that perfect subjection of Christ imputed to us as our substitute. He must not only be equal with God (the station that man tried to steal), He must be everything we tried to assume that was not ours so that He can, of His own free will, surrender the position that He rightfully held. He has to be able to surrender that position (from which you and I strayed) and come in total, unconditional submission to His Father. We have left our station; He must be able and willing to assume the very position that we were created for. This is what we see taking place.

PHI 2:8 says, "And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." This is the obedience that He had to render in order to become our substitute and in order to reconcile a sinner back with the Father.

Our blessed Saviour further qualifies the expression of our text, "The Son can do nothing of himself." We read in JOH 5:30, "I can of mine own self do nothing [He qualifies this]...because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

That is why He can do nothing of Himself. What is His limiting factor? It is the unconditional surrender of His will to the will of the Father. That is where His limitation lies: it was in the will. He said, "because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

This limitation is not a defect in His person (brought about by His incarnation) or any limitation in His power (voluntary or imposed). There was no limiting of His power even in a voluntary measure, nor was it imposed. He was equal with the Father, but the limitation our text speaks of, "The Son can do nothing of himself," is exclusively a matter of the will!

It was His will that He should do the will of His Father. This is the type of unconditional surrender the Lord wants from you and I: not that we serve Him out of compulsion, but that it is our will; it is our desire. That is the work of the new birth: that our desires are renewed, that it becomes our will to do His will, that our will becomes unconditionally dissolved in the will of the Father. That is the work of grace. Our blessed Saviour’s will was totally dissolved in His Father’s will.

"I can of mine own self do nothing...because [He qualifies this; He tells us why He can do nothing of Himself.] I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." (JOH 5:30) Now do you understand what true Christianity is? True Christianity is that we do not seek our own will. True Christianity, if we’re going to follow the blessed example of the Lord Jesus Christ, is that our will is not even in consideration. Our will is to do His will.

Jesus is teaching in our text what God’s purpose was for man in the creation, which was marred in the fall. This was the purpose of God in the creation of man: that we would have no desire to do our own will, that we would not seek our own will, but that we would do the will of Him that created us.

Because of our self-will, we want to claim old Satan’s promise to be as gods, deciding for ourselves what is right or wrong. That we should know good and evil means, that we will be the judge if this is right or if this is wrong. Under those circumstances we will be totally free from all restraint of the will of the Father. That was the promise of old Satan.

Watch today’s society and see how rampant old Satan’s gospel is still today: how people are going to be self-willed. They are going to be liberated, and do their own thing; they are going to have freedom. Did you know that this thing called democracy, in a literal sense, is the most ungodly thing there is? Satan promised democracy: that everybody would be free to do what was his or her own will - no submission, no subjection. In a spiritual sense, the word democracy is the most ungodly thing there is because it is a matter of rebelling against the will of our Creator. This self-will is the claiming of old Satan’s promise.

In effect Jesus said that He could not act upon His own self-will, in other words, that He was in total surrender to the will of the Father. He could not act upon His own will because the will of the Father is His will. Therefore, without the Father, the Son can do nothing of Himself but what He sees the Father do.

When Christ was formed in you, your self-will was broken; it completely takes away self-will.

Jesus was saying that He couldn’t act upon His own self-will, independent from the will of the Father. His will was to do the will of the Father. Was that a limitation, which points either to injustice in the Father or a defect in the Son? Satan convinced Eve that God’s restrictions were unkind and therefore her will should prevail. Does this teach an injustice in the Father, a restriction that’s unjust? No. Or does it, in any way, teach a defect in the Son? Certainly not!

On the contrary, it points up His perfection in the same manner as we read in TIT 1:2. "In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began."

Is that talking of a limitation in God, or is that pointing out His perfection? He cannot lie. The Lord Jesus is saying, "I can of mine own self do nothing," in other words, He cannot resist the will of the Father because His will is to do the Father’s will. That’s not pointing out an imperfection or a weakness, but it is in fact identifying the perfection of the Son. Wouldn’t it be a blessed thing if you and I were truly able to say that we could do nothing except what we see the Father do? Wouldn’t it be the most blessed thing that you and I could ever obtain in this life if our will, indeed, is to do His will?

This was not an imperfection any more than it was a limitation of God’s power where it says, "which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began."

See the same thing, which points out His perfection, in JAM 1:13. "Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man."

Is that a limitation? No, it’s pointing out the perfection of God and that is what we see in JOH 5:19, where the Lord Jesus says, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself." As we see in verse 30, "I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." That is His perfection. That is the perfection of His Deity. He cannot resist the will of the Father. His will is to do the will of the Father.

These "cannots" do not point out any weaknesses in the Divine nature or character; they affirm Divine perfection and so it is with our text when rightly understood. "Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily [He‘s saying, ‘Amen, Amen.’], I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (JOH 5:19)

As our substitute, it was necessary for our Saviour to come in our human nature to fulfill in our behalf what we are no longer able to perform with the perfection that the Father demands of us. He came in our human nature and He came to perform what you and I are no longer able to perform.

Look again at JOH 5:30. "I can of mine own self do nothing...because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." It was man’s rebellion against the will of God that brought about our alienation from God, as well as Christ’s perfect surrender to the Father’s will that obtained our reconciliation. It was our self-will that separated us from God, and it was Christ’s surrender of His will whereby we become reconciled.

We read of this alienation in COL 1:19-22. "For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell; And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works [by rebelling against the will of God], yet now hath he reconciled In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight."

There is only one way you and I can ever be reconciled with God and that is to be reconciled with His will. From God’s side, He is reconciled. From God’s side, He can look upon you and I in the Lord Jesus Christ, in that blessed atonement. But from our side, we must yet be reconciled. From our side, we must yet have the power of sin broken. It is so important that we understand what it means to be reconciled with God.

2CO 5:19 says, "To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation."

What is "the word of reconciliation" that He has committed unto you and me? Read it in verse 20. "Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God."

That alienation that is in our mind by nature - that self-will, the power of sin, wanting to serve self – has got to be broken. For you and I to be reconciled with God, you and I must be able to lay down our self-will. We read that in verse 30. "…I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." That is following His footsteps when our will has been broken and we are reconciled with the will of the Father.

We could only become redeemed from this state of alienation and reconciled to God by Christ’s perfect surrender to the will of the Father. For Him to come and be our substitute, that God could be reconciling Himself unto the world, not imputing their trespasses unto them, it had to be by Christ’s unconditional and perfect surrender to the will of the Father.

"And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done." (LUK 22:41-42)

When the Lord Jesus was facing the most ignominious death that has ever been died on this world, He said, "nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done." Are we able to write "death" on the most cherished sin, the most cherished rebellion of our heart? Are we able to write "death" on everything of self-will? Are we able to say, "Not my will, but thine be done"?

As our Saviour struggled and as He wrestled before His Father in prayer pleading, "if thou be willing, remove this cup from me," the Lord sent (verse 43), "…an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him." As He gained this additional strength, what did He use it for?

Verse 44 continues, "And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground." He besought the Father while the blood was coming through the pores of His skin. As He was sweating blood in an agony, He prayed more earnestly. What did He say? "If thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done." We will never get into a condition where we violate the will of God if we follow our Saviour’s footsteps.

Our Saviour’s affirmation of His equality with the Father yet in submission to the Father explains His commission as our Mediator with a solemn confirmation. Look at the solemnity of His confirmation when He says, "Verily, verily, I say unto you…"

"Amen, amen." So let it be. Equal with the Father in unconditional surrender to the Father, that the Son can do nothing of himself. This is as much as to say, "[Amen, amen]…I can of mine own self do nothing…because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." (JOH 5:30) That is why He could do nothing of Himself, because He does not seek His own will but the will of the Father, which has sent Him.

In our human nature, sometimes we can get so strong in the flesh, and we can become so determined, and we’ll show them, but we need to understand that not one hair can fall from our heads without the will of the Father. We must surrender to the Father’s will. We cannot say we’ll go into this city or that city and I’ll trade and I’ll gain. No, we have to say, "The Lord willing…" because we don’t know if we will be alive tomorrow. We don’t know. We have to do everything - make every plan and every decision - in subjection to the will of God. It has to be in submission to the authority of His Word. It has to be in submission to all of His will.

Man’s alienation from God was by serving his self-will. Our reconciliation back unto God was by our blessed Mediator as our substitute in unconditional surrender to His will. He accomplished our reconciliation by His unconditional obedience. We read in JOH 4:34, "Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work."

He said that He could do nothing of Himself. Now we see that He is coming to finish the work of the Father. I’ve explained before how the work of the Father was that He chose; He decreed and the Son executed it. He chose His people from eternity. He chose them unto salvation, but it was the Son that purchased it for them. See the harmony. See how the Father loved, how the Father gave His Son, and now in submission to the Father’s will, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death. In submission to the Father’s will He now performed and finished the work of the Father.

Our text asserts that even as it is impossible for the Son to do anything of Himself, so it is impossible for the Father to do anything without the Son, because He came to finish the work of the Father. They are co-equal. The Son is in submission, but neither does the Father do anything without the Son.

"The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (JOH 5:19) The Father decreed to save His people and the Son went to save His people. It was by the work of the Son that His people were saved. They are co-equal.

"My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work." (JOH 4:34) The Father began: the Father chose. The Son finished: He paid the price, He laid down His life, He humbled Himself unto death, even the death of the cross, and He finished the work that the Father began.

The Father shows and the Son sees: "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." The Father shows, the Son sees; the Father purposes and the Son executes. See how co-equal they are.

JOH 1:3 reads, "All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made."

Have you ever heard the Apostle’s Creed? It says, "I believe in God the Father, Maker of heaven and earth." Have you ever thought about how horribly that tramples upon the authority and the co-equal nature of the Son? It was by the Word that the heavens were made, and all the hosts of them by the breath of His mouth. The Father did not create the world of Himself. "All things were made by him;" by the Lord Jesus Christ, the Father’s co-equal. It was by the Word; it was by the Lord Jesus Christ. The Father willed and by the Word it took place: "without him was not any thing made that was made." Do you see how important it is that we keep the Son co-equal with the Father?

"Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the Sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God." (JOH 5:18)

Then the Lord Jesus said, "Amen, amen." See how powerfully true that was. So is it, so let it be. "Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (JOH 5:19)

He does what He sees the Father do, in other words, the Father shows Him what His plan is and the Son executes it. What Jesus did throughout His entire life was an exact transcript of what the Father did. The Father planned the salvation of those whom He loved from eternity and the Son executed that plan. Do you see the perfect harmony in the will of the Father and the will of the Son, and how the Son can do nothing of Himself? He cannot go beyond the plan of the Father, but as the Father planned our salvation, and as the Father gave His Son, the Son executed it by giving Himself and by humbling Himself and becoming obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

The plan of the Father was that salvation would be for those whom He loved from eternity, and the Son put that plan into action. It was by the power of His Word that the heavens were made. It was by the Son executing the will of the Father that all things are done.

JOH 17:1-2 says, "These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him." Those who receive eternal life from the Lord Jesus Christ were given unto Him by the Father. What He sees the Father do, that He executes.

Christ’s life, death, resurrection, and ascension were a copy of the Father’s original plan. See how, in a type, Moses received that exact commission from God. We read in HEB 8:5, "Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount."

The pattern that the Father has designed for that tabernacle, which was a type of the Lord Jesus Christ, must be followed very precisely. The Son must very precisely follow the pattern that the Father has designed for our salvation.

The Father’s plan also includes our following the same pattern, which is revealed in Christ. Now you and I have the pattern, and that is the pattern of the Lord Jesus Christ: His life here upon earth, His walk, and His submission. The Lord Jesus Christ becomes our pattern. It is the pattern of what God will have us to be.

"Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, [in other words, in the mind of Christ] if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." (ROM 8:7-9)

Do you see the pattern? You and I cannot follow the pattern of the ungodly. We must follow the pattern of the Lord Jesus Christ: that Spirit or that mind, that mental disposition of Christ, that I cannot do my own will, "but the will of the Father which hath sent me." That is the pattern that you and I must follow. He has given us this pattern and if we have not that Spirit of Christ, we are none of His.

There cannot be any reconciliation with God outside of our becoming conformed to that blessed pattern, which Christ revealed by His example of obedience to the Father’s will.

JOH 5:30 says, "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

On the Day of Judgment, you and I are going to sit as our own judges. His judgment will be just, because He does the will of Him that sent Jesus. I’ll show you where this comes in: "Do unto others as ye would they do unto you." When the Lord comes to bring you into judgment, you are going to sit in the judgment seat and the Lord is going to bring back before your memory the thoughts and the attitudes and the things that you have done to your fellow man, and you are going to sit as judge. "Is that what I would have wanted them to do to me?" If the answer is no, then we have to look to what Christ has done.

This is what He is saying. "I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will," in other words, that’s the standard upon which you and I are going to be judged. What person will ever be able to stand in the judgment and not have to say, "Guilty, guilty, guilty"?

In this life we come on trial just as if you had a prosecuting attorney that is bringing a case against you and charging you with a crime before the court. Satan is the prosecutor. Your own conscience is the witness. There you stand before God, the Father, as judge. Satan brings his accusations. He calls your own conscience to witness and you can only plead, "Guilty, guilty, guilty." The Advocate (meaning your counselor, your legal representative, your attorney), the Lord Jesus Christ, now presents your case. You cannot ever come before the court of heaven and appear as attorney pro se. We have an Advocate: Jesus Christ the Righteous. He comes forward to present your case and your defense. What is the basis of your defense? He holds up His right hand and shows the Father the scar in His hand. He proves before the judgment seat of the Father that the penalty has been paid.

Now justice demands your acquittal, because justice cannot demand payment twice. That is how we must, in this life, come before God the Father as judge. If we don’t, if we get out of this world without it, then we have one more chance to stand before the judgment, and that is when there’s no more time to repent. That is before the judgment seat of Christ and then He becomes our judge because we have not repented.

We read that in verse 30. "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

When He stands before the Father, before the courts of heaven, He’s only pleading my case according to the will of the Father, because He knows if my name was among those that the Father gave Him. He knows if my name was among those whom He died for. He knows if I am among those for whom He can say, "Father, that debt is paid." That is why His judgment is just, because He receives it from the Father. What He sees the Father do, so He does.

Our Father’s plan for every one that He has chosen, that Christ "...should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him," includes our conforming to the Spirit of Christ. The Father’s plan is that you and I conform to the pattern of the Lord Jesus Christ.

ROM 8:26-29 says, "Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought [it’s the work of the Spirit, it’s the work of the Son, and it’s the work of the Father that brings about our salvation. We don’t know what we should ask as we ought]: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. [The Holy Spirit instills in our hearts what is the will of God.] And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."

So many people have such a warped opinion of what the doctrine of predestination is. We are predestined to be conformed to the precious image of Christ, the blessed pattern that He has given us. We are to be conformed to this "that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."

What the Father decreed in His eternal counsel, the Son had ever in His view, as was spoken of in a prophetic way in PSA 16. In a prophetic way, the eternal will of the Father is laid forth.

"I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." (PSA 16:7-11)

In a prophetic way, the prophet is setting forth that manuscript, that prophetic prediction of how "thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." The plan of the Father was revealed in a prophetic way to His prophets to teach His church what Christ’s real mission would be.

As the Holy Spirit works the wonder of grace in the heart, then we begin to understand why our Saviour taught us to pray "For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen." (MAT 6:13) We are not to live by our self-will. We are to live according to the will of the Father.

That kingdom, and that power, and that glory is what our Saviour foresaw when He said in JOH 5:19, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise."

Unconditional surrender is the main, golden thread that is inter-woven throughout the gospel. If that’s not there, it’s not the gospel, because this is what it takes to be conformed to the image of Christ: that our will becomes dissolved in the will of God.

That blessed kingdom and power and glory is what our Saviour received as His reward. He is co-equal with the Father. He humbled Himself. He became obedient unto death. He obeyed the Father, put His plan into action, and fulfilled it. Now the Father has a reward.

PHI 2:8-11 reads, "And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore [in exchange for, in reward for, as His reward] God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

Do you see the kingdom and the power and the glory that our Blessed Redeemer received as His reward for such unconditional surrender to the will of His Father? Even that reward is granted for the glory of the Father. The Father now is so glorified in giving Him His reward.

As our Saviour trod this sinful world and allowed Himself to be killed by these hateful Jews, His eye was on that reward.

What is faith? "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." (HEB 11:6) There is no such thing as faith without an eye on the reward. We have to believe that He is and that He is a "rewarder."

See the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ in HEB 12:2. "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; [see how He was looking unto the reward] who for the joy that was set before him [It was for the reward; He saw the reward that the Father had in store for Him.] endured the cross, despising the shame, [now He has received His reward] and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."

As we receive grace to follow the blessed pattern of our Saviour, our eye will also be fixed upon our reward as the object of our faith.

Where our text says "...but what he seeth the Father do, for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise," Jesus was speaking of the immeasurable love of the Father in giving His Son. He saw the sacrifice of the Father in giving His Son, and so the Son did likewise in giving Himself. Amen.


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