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John 18:4

“Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth and said unto them; Whom seek ye.”

God appeared unto Abram and revealed His blessing upon him. He told him that his seed would be strangers in a land that was not their own and that they should serve them and be afflicted four hundred years. He did not leave His servant with such a doleful and depressing promise for He said that He would visit them in this strange land and deliver them out when the sin of the Amorites was complete (Gen. 15:16). These things came to pass in the exact order and at the appropriate time as appointed of Yehovah God and on the self-same day, as He had promised, He brought forth the nation of Israel from Egypt (Ex. 12:51).

God has purposed in Himself, for there is none greater, all things whatsoever exist. He designed the necessity of the whole of creation and determined what things must come to pass and how they should fall out. He set these events, to the minutest of details, in the precise order that they should be made manifest in total cooperation with everything else that existed before and as the base for that which shall be after. The design, performance and presentation of life is in harmony with the perfect counsel of His eternal Will therefore all things work together for good to them that love Him, the called, according to His purpose.

He gave His word as an oath to His servant and, in the fullness of time, everything He said came to pass by the power of His will. His knowledge of that which should happen is complete for nothing is outside the realm of His workmanship, all His works are firmly established, faithful and true and His commandments are confirmed (Ps.111:7). As He has purposed, so He has spoken and as He has spoken all things came into being and consist without exception. Though all things are finished and have been from before the foundation of the world (Heb. 4:3), yet their manifestation is according to the passage of time. Thus “when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the Law,” (Gal. 4:4).

This Son is the necessary manifestation of the fullness of the Godhead for the purpose of redeeming His people from their sin in Adam. He is the Mighty God, the everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace who, “being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Himself the form of a servant and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in the fashion as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Phil. 2:6). He did not come into the world to become the Son of God nor was He ever separate from the fullness of God for in Him the fullness of the Godhead dwelt bodily (Col. 2:9). According to the purpose intended by Yehovah God, He must needs come in the manifestation of the Son of God to do the will of the Father. As that prophet that should come (Deut. 18:15), He could not come speaking His word but rather the word of He who sent Him (even though there is no variance in the Word of God). As the servant of God He came to do the will of the One that sent Him and as the Lamb of God which took away the sin of the world, He must be obedient in all things, even the death on the cross; “Behold My servant, whom I uphold; Mine elect in whom My soul delights: I have put My Spirit upon Him; He shall bring forth judgment to the nations” (Is. 42:1).

The Anointed Salvation of Yehovah God came into this world at the appointed time to manifest that which was finished before the foundation of the world. He had a complete understanding of all that He had ordained and was full well cognoscente that there could be no variation in any point. He came and fulfilled every jot and every tittle of the Law of God, beginning at His birth which was foretold of old. The proclamation of the Messenger of God was that His name was Jesus, the salvation of Yehovah, and that He should save His people from their sin. The Angels told the shepherds that there was born unto them in the city of David, a savior which is Anointed of Yehovah, Simeon praised God as his eyes had seen God’s salvation which He had prepared before the face of all people and Anna “gave thanks likewise unto the Lord” (Luke 2). These all knew and testified that the child was given not in prospect of doing great things but in the fulfillment of the Word of God which is established sure and true.

“But when the fullness of time was come God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the Law” (Gal. 4:4).

Jesus was a servant to the Law of God. He was circumcised a son of Israel according to the Law. At twelve years old He stood in the Temple of Jerusalem “in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them and asking them questions and all that heard Him were amazed at His understanding and answers” (Luke 2:46). Here He proclaimed that His station in life was to be about His Father’s business which included all things written of Him in the Law and the Prophets. He was baptized of John in the Jordan River “for thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matt. 3:15). He was tempted in every aspect of human emotion and feelings for forty days in the wilderness of the Devil to prove He was anointed of God and He endured the privation and limitations of the flesh all the days of His life.

Every event in His life came to pass according to the time that He had set for them to come to pass. When He spoke the Word of God to the people concerning their being a stiff-necked and hard-hearted people, they were “filled with wrath and rose up and thrust Him out of the city and led Him to the brow of the hill whereon their city was built that they might cast Him down headlong; but passing through the midst of them He went on His way” (Luke 4:28) for His time had not come and this was not the prescribed manner in which He should die.

When He performed the miracles given Him to manifest the sovereign power of God over all things, He perceived “that they would come and that Him by force to make Him a king, He departed again into a mountain Himself alone” (John 6:15) for He was the great King over all the earth and this came not by the hands of mortal men. Jesus did not come to become great or to be recognized as a great teacher and the founder of a new religious order. He came to reveal the Father to the world and when He preached in Galilee, because the Jews sought to kill Him, His disciples urged Him to become more public that His fame may spread. They anticipated the much publicized earthly kingdom with all the amenities of political, military and economic reform, but Jesus said unto them, “My time is not yet come” (John 7:6). Yet at the time appointed of the Father “when it came to pass that He should be received up, He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51). This He did because it was according to “the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God” that He should be delivered into wicked hands and be slain. Not that God had looked forward in time to see what might happen and then made His plans accordingly, but because He created time as the stage upon which His salvation would be made manifest from generation to generation for all flesh to see it together.

“Therefore does My Father love Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No man takes it from Me but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down and I have power to take it again; this commandment have I received of My Father” (John 10:17).

Jesus did not find Himself in an unpleasant situation when the band came to Him in the garden. He was in the exact place at the appointed hour that all things needful might be fulfilled. Judas, who was of the seed of the serpent from the beginning, was well convinced that Jesus was a traitor to the nation of Israel and that he was performing his proper religious duty in betraying Him to the authorities. His mind was so deceived that he expected accommodations and applause from his fellow collaborators in ridding the nation of this one who disturbed all Israel. His eyes were blinded to the truth as his duty compelled him to be the friend who would deliver the Lamb up to be slain.

Jesus knew this one from the beginning. He gave him the power that the others had in the casting out of devils, healing the sick and preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God. Judas heard the truth, walked with the Savior and saw the miracles as he traveled the countryside with the other disciples yet none of this was sufficient to change this goat into a sheep of the pasture of Yehovah or to make this tare into the wheat of His field. The Anointed Salvation of Yehovah was to come forth to be delivered up as “He is brought up as a lamb to the slaughter and as a sheep before the shearers is dumb, so He opened not His mouth” (Is. 53:7) and Judas was the appointed agent necessary in the facilitation of this duty; “And after the sop, Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That which you must do, do quickly” (John 13:27).

After Judas departed and Jesus washed the feet of the disciples He gave them the remembrance of that which (in time) had not yet happened. After He told Peter that Satan had desires for him and Peter swore that he would defend Jesus to the very end and after the two swords were determined to be sufficient, Jesus took them into the mount of Olives into a garden called Gethsemane, where He openly manifested the proof of His being the son of man as He besought the Father that, if there be any other way, to remove this cup from Him; “nevertheless, not as I will but as You” (Matt. 26:39). He was not becoming resolve to the will of God nor was He seeking an alternate avenue; He demonstrated that He was full well aware of not only those things which would befall Him physically in the next few hours but of all that was absolutely necessary in the deliverance of His people form their sin.

He was in total command of the events as they transpired and not one mortal could have acted independent of the eternal will of God. Judas assembled the bands of men with swords and torches who were convinced that they also were performing that which was not only lawful but expedient for the nation. They came forth in a mass, prepared for combat and Jesus, after awakening His slumbering disciples, crossed the brook Cedron (the darkness of mourning) and came and met them. They did not have to hunt for Him for the time had come when all things written must be fulfilled. He gave Judas the knowledge of His location, He gave the men in the band the earnest desire to be out this late at night to apprehend this innocent man and He gave Peter the ability and courage to fillet the ear of the servant of Malchus. He asked this mob with their lanterns and torches and weapons, Who are you looking for? And when He identified Himself as their suspect, by saying “I AM” (the name of Yehovah) the entire assembly “went backward and fell to the ground”; yet none departed the scene.

He protected His sheep, even though they were about to scatter and leave Him alone, as He commanded the arresting body to “let these go their way”. He caused impetuous Peter to draw his filleting knife and cut off the ear but the mob was restrained as Jesus healed the servant and told Peter to “put up your knife”. These things Jesus did because he knew all things that should come upon Him.

“Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rms. 5:1).

Jesus came into this world having His seed with Him and His work before Him. He knew that the scepter of praise (Gen. 49:10) was unto Him and the peace which came only when He endured the contradiction of sin against Himself. He full well knew that this night was to be filled with the false accusations of a fearful and pious people whose hearts were afore prepared unto this end. He knew the exact moment when the guards would spit upon Him, pull out His beard and strike Him upon the head. He knew the pain of the scourging whips and the agony of the rods as they struck His feeble and frail body but more so than all these fleshly encounters, Jesus knew the ultimate suffering that He should endure. The time had come when He who knew no sin, He who could not deny Himself through the inherent inability of Adam to be Holy as God is Holy, even He who could not deny Himself being the fullness of the Godhead bodily, must become the sin of His people.

Perfection must perfectly become imperfection and righteousness must righteously become unrighteous before the absolute perfect Law of God as He who knew no sin became the sin of His people. This is how the perfect sacrifice for sin may be the propitiation for all the iniquity of Jacob. He must have laid upon Himself everything that is diametrically opposed to the Holiness of His being and become that which He abhors and then, “for a brief moment have I forsaken you but with great mercies will I gather you” (Is. 54:7). He knew that God, who is “of purer eyes than to behold evil and can not look on iniquity” (Hab. 1:13) must turn away from this perfect sacrifice for sin and thus He cried out “My God, My God why have you forsaken Me?” (Matt. 27:46). He must be despised and rejected as a man of sorrow who is acquainted with grief. He must be abandoned by His sheep as the axe is laid upon the root and we must esteem Him stricken of God and afflicted; “But He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquity. The chastisement of our peace was upon Him and with His stripes we are healed” (Is. 53:5).

Jesus full well knew what was about to happen in time as His will had ordained it and His power brought it to pass. He knew who would do what to Him physically at what time but more importantly. He knew why He was to endure these atrocities. He was personally acquainted with the sin of His people as they became partakers of flesh and blood; therefore He likewise, Himself, partook of the same that He might be touched with the feelings of the infirmities and weaknesses of these earthen vessels.

He endured in time that which was finished before the world began, that He might leave a testimony of His work for His people and shew forth His salvation for all flesh to see. He had full knowledge of the completed work and yet “though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by all that He suffered and being made complete, He became the author of eternal salvation unto them that obey Him” (Heb. 5:8). These who obey Him have been born from above and are hewn from that Rock, which is anointed. These love Him because He first loved them with an eternal love as they dwell in the tabernacles afore prepared unto glory by the shed blood of the Lamb of God, slain from before time began. They have this testimony of the finished work and they keep the commandment of God by His Spirit within; this is the New Covenant. “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you and you shall be clean from all your filthiness and from your idols will I cleanse you; And a new heart will I give you and a new spirit will I put in you and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes and you shall keep My judgments and do them; and you shall dwell in the land that I gave unto your fathers and you shall be My people and I shall be your God. I will save you from your uncleanness and I will call for the corn and will increase it and lay no famine upon you. I will multiply the fruit of the trees and the increase of the filed that you shall receive no more reproach of famine among the heathen. Then shall you remember your own evil ways and your doings that were not good; and you shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations” (Ezek. 36:25ff).

“But the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My name; He shall teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” (John 14:26).

Man’s theology is taught by man after the passions and understanding of the flesh. God teaches His children to know and love Him by the communication of the indwelling Spirit of Holiness which bears witness that they are the sons of God. This testimony is from faith to faith and is not dependent upon the intellectual honesty of the hearer or the carnal abilities they possess. The Spirit leads the children in all truth as they grow in the grace and knowledge of His will so that they do not need another to teach them. Yet God has set in His assembly fellow companions in the tribulation and patience of the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah who are able to teach others by the experience they have endured. These bring nothing new to the called out assembly but rather they give that sure sound of the certain trumpet which speaks of the trials and tribulations which beset each stranger and sojourner in the land and the temptation which is common unto men.

These testimonies are not of man and his abilities or of the responsibility of man to seek after the Lord while He may be found. They are the affirmation of the “manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God for which you also suffer” (II Thes. 1:5) and the love of God for which He bled and died. Therefore do His children consider the High Priest of our faith who has been touched with these feelings, knows our frailties and has experienced all our inabilities. This He did knowingly and with great intent of heart as He knew what must happen, when it must come to pass and for whom it is purposed. He alone there fore is worthy of all praise and honour for He has redeemed His people from their sin.

“Wherefore, seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which does so easily beset us and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 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. For consider Him that endured such contradiction of sin against Himself, lest you be weary and faint in your minds” (Heb. 12:1f).

It is one thing to attempt, without success, to understand the mystery of God and His deliverance of His people. It is quite another matter to understand that Yehovah God came forth with full knowledge of all that He had ordained to come to pass and suffered as He did for His people. God commended His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, dead in the trespasses and sin of Adam, compounded and exemplified by every thought, word and deed in the flesh, He made Himself of no reputation and took upon Himself the likeness of sinful man that He might condemn sin in the flesh (Rms. 8:3). He fulfilled the Law in all righteousness, crucified the old man and nailed the handwriting of ordinances to His cross taken them out of the way that His Beloved might be granted to be adorned in fine linen, clean and white, which is the righteousness of the saint.

He knew that He must endure the sum of all the sin of everyone of His children with the fullness of the wrath of God against all ungodliness of man that He might stand before the throne of grace and declare His generation; “Behold I and the children”.

“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God” (I John 3:1).

Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
April 3, 2016