Learning from the Savior’s learned obedience

One of the verses in my Daily Light reading for this morning was Hebrews 5:8: “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” The context for all the rest of the verses in today’s reading had to do with affliction, but that phrase about Jesus learning obedience arrested me, not for the first time. He had always obeyed the Father perfectly, but in Gethsemane  was the first time, as far as we know, that He prayed “not my will, but thine, be done” (Luke 22:42). So perhaps learning obedience had to do with obeying the Father’s will despite His own will? (There is more helpful commentary on this verse at the bottom of this page.)

One way in which this encourages me is to observe how the sinless Son of God obeyed and endured. Here are a few thoughts:

1. Our will and His will. It’s not necessarily wrong to struggle with God’s will. For us, more often that not, it usually is a problem of faith or obedience. People throughout Scripture have been called to do things that at first they didn’t want to do: Moses, Ananias, others.There are many times when God’s call to someone included encouragement that He would be with them and help them: Joshua, Jeremiah, Paul to name a few. These days people say you’ll know something is God’s will when you “have a peace” about it, but sometimes God’s will causes fear, trepidation, reluctance. Jesus asked, “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me,” and then submitted His will to the Father’s: “nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” We can follow His example when we shrink from something He has called us to do. He was sinless, but we can pray and seek His Word to deal with any sinful issues we might have in regard to submitting to Him.

2. Remember our purpose. In John 12: 27, Jesus said, “Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour.” The plan of redemption had been decided upon from the foundation of the world. I’m sure many of the people mentioned above had to go back to their calling and remind themselves of God’s purposes and promises when they were later in the thick of things.

3. Seek His glory. After saying, “Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour, Jesus said, “Father, glorify thy name” (John 12:28). When we look at ourselves, our safety, our pain, our fears, our comfort, we shrink back: when we seek His glory we can find the purpose and strength we need.

4. Resist temptation with God’s Word. Satan tried to derail Jesus from His purpose, but Jesus resisted with God’s Word. We need to read and know His Word that we might do the same. Though He never sinned, we do fail, and thankfully God promises grace to forgive and help us. But he also wants us to be filled with His Word and grace and enabled to resist temptation thereby for His glory.

5. Remember the coming joy. “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrew 12:2). I wonder what all was encompassed in that joy: perhaps having finished His course, pleasing His Father, being reunited with His Father and back home in heaven where all is right and no sin or sorrow dwells, providing the way for us to go there, too. And that leads us to…

6. Look beyond the momentary to the eternal. “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18). “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth” (Colossians 3:1-2).

Are there any other ways in which Jesus’ obedience encourages your own?

Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:15-16

Wanting our own way

I mentioned in yesterday’s post that I had once done a study on what the Bible has to say about wanting our own way, looking up phrases like “own way,” “own thoughts,” “own heart” etc. I thought I’d share the results with you:

  • Judges 17:6b Every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
  • II Kings 17:33 They feared the LORD, and served their own gods.
  • Prov. 14:14a The backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways
  • Prov. 21:2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts.
  • Isa. 53:6  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
  • Isa. 65:2   I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts;
  • Isaiah 66:3   Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.
  • Jeremiah 18:12   And they said, There is no hope: but we will walk after our own devices, and we will every one do the imagination of his evil heart.
  • Ezekiel 13:2   Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD…
  • Ezekiel 16:15a   But thou didst trust in thine own beauty…
  • Mark 7:9   And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.
  • Romans 10:3   For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
  • Romans 16:18   For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly
  • Philippians 2:21   For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s.
  • II Timothy 3:2b   For men shall be lovers of their own selves
  • Jude 1:16   These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.

Results:

  • Proverbs 25:28 He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.
  • Psalm 22:29 None can keep alive his own soul.
  • Psalm 81:12 So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: and they walked in their own counsels.
  • Proverbs 1:31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
  • Ezekiel 11:21b I will recompense their way upon their own heads, saith the Lord GOD.
  • Ezekiel 36:31   Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.
  • Romans 1:24   Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

Remember:

  • I  Corinthians  6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
  • Psalm 44:3 For they got not the land in possession by their own sword, neither did their own arm save them: but thy right hand, and thine arm, and the light of thy countenance, because thou hadst a favour unto them.
  • Proverbs 25:27b   For men to search their own glory is not glory.

Remedy:

  • I Samuel 15:17 And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel?
  • Proverbs  3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
  • Proverbs  3:7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.
  • Proverbs 12:15b The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.
  • Matthew 7:5a   Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye…
  • I Corinthians 10:33   Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.
  • I Corinthians 13:5   [Love] doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil….
  • II Corinthians 8:5   And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.
  • Philippians 3:9   And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.

 

Laudable Linkage

Here are a few good reads from the last week:

Book Review: A Year of Biblical Womanhood. I’m sharing this not just because of the book, but mainly for the discussion of Biblical interpretation. I don’t know if you have encountered this, but in many secular venues where there is any discussion of Christianity, often someone will toss out what they consider as absurd OT requirements as a reason to toss out the whole or to say we can’t or shouldn’t live by Biblical principles. This explains what is wrong with such an approach (and though it doesn’t say this, one could turn the conversation to a good witnessing opportunity in that all of these requirements were fulfilled in Christ.) Though the author of the book in question is asking questions many are asking and dealing with a confusing and controversial subject, the way she handles Scripture inclines me not to trust her conclusions.

A helpful, hopeful election perspective.

The greatest of these is “Sola Scriptura.” Good thoughts on good that came from the Reformation. “Luther and the Reformers didn’t get everything right… But their role was like that of a good teacher—not to teach students every fact they will ever need to know, but to teach them how to learn. The Reformers reminded the church how to learn—how to think—by pointing us to the Scriptures and away from human authorities.”

Sixty years of memories. Neat gift idea.

15 things home sewers can lean from industrial sewing.

Questionnaires for writing character profiles.

And I saw this on Pinterest.

Gotta run — busy day ahead. Have a great weekend!