Tag Archives: bible

Did Jesus walk by faith the same as we do?

Jesus is the Son of God. He is God the Son. He is God. There should be no question about His deity. John made it clear in the first chapter of his book that the Word existed before the beginning of creation and that He was God and that He created all things. He also wrote that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. Jesus became the God man. God is infinite and is everywhere at the same time. In His human body Jesus could only be in one place at one time. He took upon himself human limits. God can hear the prayers of millions all at the same time and in hundreds of different languages. He can speak to the hearts and minds of millions of people all at the same time. Jesus could only speak in one place at a time. He could only hear what was within hearing distance of His two human ears. Once the Word became flesh He entered into the world of human limits.

God has always existed. He never changes. He has always had infinite understanding. He never went through a growing up period. We read this about the boy Jesus “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom…” Luke 2:40 NKJV Jesus went through the growth stages of life. He was a baby, then a toddler, an adolescent and a teenager. He had to learn to walk and talk just like the rest of us. As a three year old He did not know He was the Son of God. Read my previous article on ‘Prophecy in the Life of Jesus’ to explore the process by which Jesus came to understand who He was.

The last words Jesus spoke before He died on the cross were “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” He died in faith trusting that His Father would accept His sacrifice for human sins and raise Him up from the dead in three days. It was not just at His death that Jesus had faith. He lived His entire life by faith, trusting in His Father and in His written word.

Are there any other scriptures that show us that Jesus walked by faith? Let’s look at
Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I LIVE BY THE FAITH OF THE SON OF GOD, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”  KJV
Unfortunately other translation such as the New King James version and the New International Version change this to our “faith IN the Son of God.”

Another verse that speaks of the faith of Jesus (not faith in Jesus) is 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:” King James Version. Again, sadly, the New King James Version and New International Version change this to faith IN Jesus. See also Romans 3:21-22, Galatians. 2:15-16,  Galatians 3:22 and Ephesians 3:11-12 . I will leave it to you to research the original Greek and see why it should be translated as the ‘faith OF Jesus’ rather than ‘faith IN Jesus.’

Why does it matter? Because there is a beautiful and wonderful truth here that our Lord Jesus walked by faith the same as we do! We read in Hebrews 4:15 New King James Version  “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Our faith, our trust in God, is often tempted in this life by doubt and fear. Our High Priest to whom we pray understands our temptations because He was “in all points tempted as we are.” It is a comfort to know that Jesus understands our difficulties because He has been through it Himself as a human.

When Satan tempted Jesus in the wilderness he preceded each of his temptations with the phrase “IF you are the Son of God….” He was attacking the faith of Jesus by trying to get Him to doubt that He was the Son of God. Jesus kept His faith in His Father and defeated Satan by quoting the Scriptures.

Jesus maintained and built up His trust in the Father by prayer and by the scriptures. We read that He sometimes spent the entire night in prayer. It was necessary to His Faith. We do not find in the New Testament that Jesus had any visions, dreams, or revelations to Him by angels. Prayer and the scriptures were His tools and weapons. Those are the same things that are available to every Christian.

Since He was walking by faith, trusting the Father and the scriptures, what about the miracles? Were those not accomplished by the God part of Jesus rather than the human part of Jesus? In my opinion, I believe the miracles were performed by the angels in response to the faith of Jesus. I will explain that in a future article.

It does not diminish my love, respect or worship of Jesus to think of Him as walking in human faith. Rather, it enhances it! It shows how much harder it was for Him to accomplish what He did for us and makes me to appreciate Him more and feel more closely bonded to Him! He lived and died in faith, trusting that He was doing the Father’s will and that His human blood sacrifice on the altar would be accepted by the Father as the atonement for human sins.

 

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The Importance of Prophecy in the Life of Jesus

Prophecy played a vital role in the life of Jesus. Before Jesus began His ministry God sent someone to prepare the way for Him. That man was John the Baptist. John was in the desert preaching repentance to prepare the way for the One who would go to the cross. The work of John was important to direct the minds of the people toward the things of God and to soften their hearts to receive the gospel after Jesus rose from the dead.

When John became popular the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent men to investigate. They may have been curious but their primary motives were probably suspicion, jealousy and possibly fear of losing some financial support if the people followed John instead of coming to the temple and giving offerings there. John saw right through them and called them vipers. They asked John who he was. Their tone was most likely “just who do you think you are? You are not from Jerusalem. You are not one of us. Who gave you the authority to preach to people out here?” These were the same people who questioned the authority of Jesus when He came to the temple. John answered their question by quoting prophecy from the Old Testament. He said, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness make straight the way of the Lord.”  John was referring to the prophecy in Isaiah 40:3.

John somehow knew that prophecy was about himself. For him that prophecy defined who he was and what his purpose in life was. So prophecy played a vital part in the life of John who in turn played an important part in preparing the way for Christ and His gospel.

In Luke 2:40 NKJV we read this about Jesus, “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.” Jesus grew physically and emotionally just as any human baby. When He was a baby He did not know who He was or what His purpose in life was. So the question is when and how did Jesus learn that He was the Messiah and that His purpose was to bring salvation through the cross? There is no indication that He had any special revelation from the Father by way of visions, dreams, messages from angels or people. Then how did He discover who He was?

The educational system for Jews during the time of Jesus was for boys to attend school at their local synagogue beginning at the age of 6. Girls did not attend school. The boys learned to read and write and to do math. At the age of 10 the boys would begin their study of the Torah (the Old Testament.) They would continue that study thought the age of 12. I believe it was during that time period between the ages of 10 through 12 that the boy Jesus came to understand who He was and what His purpose in life was.

When Jesus was 12 years old he went to a Passover feast in Jerusalem with His family. As the group returned back home they discovered Jesus was missing.
They went back to Jerusalem and found Jesus in the temple discussing religion with the teachers there. His mother Mary scolded Jesus for causing them to worry about Him.
Jesus then said something very revealing. He said, “…Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” Luke 2:49 NKJV The business of Joseph was as a carpenter. Jesus was not discussing carpentry with the temple leaders. He was referring to His heavenly Father and the business of true religion. I believe this reveals to us that by age 12 Jesus understood He was the Son of God and not the son of Joseph.

As he was growing up did Mary and Joseph tell young Jesus about the unusual circumstances of His birth? Most certainly not. They would not have told Him that His mother was a virgin and had conceived without a man being involved. It was their secret. As Jesus studied the Old Testament scriptures He would have studied all the prophecies about the Messiah they contained. By age 12 He was smart enough to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Daniel told when the Messiah would be born. Jesus certainly knew when He had been born. So the first clue was that He had been born at the time the Messiah was to be born. Next, prophecy told where the Messiah would be born, in Bethlehem. Jesus would have known where He was born. So how many boys were born in Bethlehem at the time He was? There would not have been very many. That really narrows things down. Prophecy revealed that the Messiah would live in Egypt for a while. Jesus would have known that He had lived in Egypt. Prophecy revealed that He would live in Nazareth. So with those prophecies and His knowledge about His own life Jesus had all the clues He needed to know that He was the Messiah. He did not have to have visions, dreams or angels to learn who He was and what His mission in life was. His heavenly Father had designed all of the information Jesus needed into the prophecies recorded in the Old Testament. Thus prophecy played a vital role in the life of Jesus.

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