The Prerogatives of Diety
We’re in the time between the resurrection and Pentecost, the time when the Holy Spirit came and the Acts 2 church was started, with Peter preaching the first sermon. It occurs to me that perhaps we don’t focus enough attention to this time of year when Jesus ascended to the Father and the world was trying to get used to the idea that Jesus was no longer on earth – at least in the bodily sense.
Recently, right after Easter, I was asked an interesting question. It seems two folks got involved in a little theological debate about the human Jesus and the divine Jesus at the moment of the crucifixion. The question had to do with the location of the divine Jesus, Jesus as God, at the moment of the physical death of the human Jesus.
One thing that people don’t really seem to understand is that Jesus was fully God and fully man, at the same time. When God the Father sent God the Son to earth in human form, as a baby named Jesus, Jesus did not cease being part of the Trinity, the Godhead. Jesus did, however, give up the prerogatives, or privileges of deity. He readily admitted that he came to do the will of the Father, not His own will, and that no one knew the time that things would happen with the exception of the Father.
The problem with trying to understand the nuances of all this is that we only have human brains and we are trying to explain God in terms of something that we can understand – that just isn’t possible. Now before you ask me about why Jesus could still perform miracles, I must assume it was so Jesus could glorify the Father. Notice that Jesus gave thanks to the Father in all He did; and as I said above, he came to earth to do the will of the Father.
So on the cross, the human Jesus died – but the Son of God, the second member of the Trinity, lived on – eternally – just like His Father and the Holy Spirit. Jesus never ceased being God just because he was put on a cross – but that’s just tough for us to understand. Anyway, the verse for tonight reinforces the idea that Jesus and God are one. We are told by the Jesus Himself, in John 17:11, “ I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name—the name you gave me—so that they may be one as we are one.” That’s remarkable, isn’t it?
My encouragement this evening is that Jesus wants us to be in unity with one another as Jesus and God the Father are one. My prayer is that you will follow the model of unity put forth by Jesus and His Father as a model of behavior for us, as mortals, to follow. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…