“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Monday, November 03, 2008

“Mercy and truth preserve the King: and His throne is upholden by mercy.” (Prov. 20:28).

“He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant.” (Is. 53:2). Before whom? Before His Father. This was His Father’s beloved Son in whom He was well pleased. Under His purview His Son came up; in all things the Father directed to develop in His Son the most precious characteristics; into His Son He breathed His Holy Spirit from conception—the Spirit without measure.

“He studied the life of plants and animals, and the life of man. From His earliest years He was possessed of one purpose; He lived to bless others. For this He found resources in nature; new ideas of ways and means flashed into His mind as He studied plant life and animal life. Continually He was seeking to draw from things seen illustrations by which to present the living oracles of God. The parables by which, during His ministry, He loved to teach His lessons of truth show how open His spirit was to the influences of nature, and how He had gathered the spiritual teaching from the surroundings of His daily life.

“Thus to Jesus the significance of the word and the works of God was unfolded, as He was trying to understand the reason of things. Heavenly beings were His attendants, and the culture of holy thoughts and communings was His. From the first dawning of intelligence He was constantly growing in spiritual grace and knowledge of truth.” Desire of Ages, p. 70.

From His first thoughts Jesus reflected the gentleness, tenderness, and softness of spirit of our Father in heaven.

“As a root out of a dry ground.” (ibid.). This sweet heavenly environment and in which His Father daily cocooned His Son made Jesus a source of joy and faith and love to everyone around Him, poor people who were steeped in misery and legalistic slavery to tradition and sin.

“He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him.” (ibid.). Some people have seen in this verse only the last hours of His ministry—Gethsemane to His burial. But from the manger to the grave Christ bore the consequences of our sin. He carried His cross during His whole life. Lack of acceptance was deeply felt all His life long—during His childhood, youth, young adulthood, and His ministry.

“A body hast Thou prepared Me.” (Heb. 10:5). In the body which His Father gave Him was nothing that would attract attention or applause. No one was to worship a cute face or a body-built physique. He was given no advantage over the least naturally disadvantaged of the human race. He took our nature with all its decline since sin began its devastation of God’s most beautiful intelligent creation. “He took man’s nature, that He might reach man’s wants.” Steps to Christ, p. 11. “Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered; and being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him.” (Heb. 5:8,9).

“He is despised and rejected of men; a Man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.” (Is. 53:3). When you are despised and rejected, what is your response? More despite and rejection in return? Or do you become full of sorrow and grief? Here, again, we get an inside peek at the heart of the God of love, the heart of Jesus. He never lashed out due to being rejected, even though it was His constant earthly experience since His barnyard birth and manger for a crib.

May we more and more fully see the true God of love, as revealed to us through His Son. The “tender plant” remained in His soul throughout His life on earth. And we can rest assured, with the disciples who watched their beloved Master leave them in the cloud of angels, that that same Jesus with the same tender mercy those men had experienced from Him the previous 3 years, would stand before the great God of righteousness and justice, and that He will take the full brunt of His Father’s pain and discomfort at the presence of sin in His children, and shed on them His full acceptance and His Father's also.

It is God’s glory to be gracious and longsuffering. Thus the Father prearranged for the best mediator possible, Jesus our advocate. While He must stand for righteousness, truth, and judgment, because He loves to be merciful the plan of our redemption was His idea from eternity past.

“In the heart of Christ, where reigned perfect harmony with God, there was perfect peace. He was never elated by applause, nor dejected by censure or disappointment. Amid the greatest opposition and the most cruel treatment, He was still of good courage.” Desire of Ages, p. 330.


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