October 4 I Friday
“Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
—1 Timothy 1:17
When we study God the Father with God the Son, we find things that are true of God but not true of Jesus. Firstly, God cannot be seen. John tells us, “No one has ever seen God…” (1 John 4:12). Yet, Jesus was seen. Secondly, James tells us, “…For God cannot be tempted by evil…” (James 1:13). Jesus, however, was tempted for forty days in the wilderness. But not only that, the author of Hebrews writes, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to feel sympathy for our weaknesses, but we have One who has been tempted in every way, just as we are––yet He did not sin” (Hebrews 4:15).
Thirdly, God is omniscient, He knows everything. Yet, we are told, “Son though He was, He learned obedience from what He suffered…” (Hebrews 5:8). Jesus learned obedience, which does not imply He was at any point disobedient. Luke also tells us, “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:52). Jesus grew intellectually, physically, spiritually and socially. But does God develop? No, God is unchanging.
Fourthly, God cannot die as Paul affirms,
“...God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal…”
(1 Timothy 6:15-16). Nobody will ever be summoned to God’s funeral because God cannot die––He is immortal and eternal by nature. And still, Jesus died––in fact, it is at the very heart of the Christian gospel that Jesus died.
Altogether, God cannot be seen, tempted, is omniscient and immortal, while Jesus was seen, tempted, taught and died. How do we reconcile the two? We ought to recognize that Jesus was never less than God––not even for a moment––but He acted on earth as though He was never, ever more than a human being. In other words, it was not as God that Jesus was seen, tempted, taught or died but as a man.
Paul sums up Jesus’s life on earth perfectly to the church in Philippi: “…who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; rather, He made Himself nothing…being made in human likeness.…He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to death—even
death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:6-8).
Jesus said, “Believe Me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me…” (John 14:11). As a man, Jesus allowed Himself to be the vehicle through which the Father did His work. May we look to Jesus’s humanity as our earthly example and do the Father’s will here on earth.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for giving Jesus as an example of how I am to live my life here on earth. Teach me to do Your perfect will always. Praise You!