We talked last week about some of the choices we can make in following God. Today, I’d like to focus on the fact that God the Father and Jesus Christ have also made choices, choices that they were also willing to live and die by, and They made all those choices for us.
I’ve run into quite a few people who think that I put far too much emphasis on Jesus Christ, and not near enough on God the Father … so, for their sake I’m going to concentrate mainly on the choices that the Father has made to lead us into the kingdom of God. After all, the Father iS … THE … Supreme being in the universe, as Christ Himself said, “My Father is greater than I” in John 14:28. So the choices that the Father makes are really the final, authoritative, and ultimate word we should rely on. Right???
Anointed and Sent
God the Father chose to raise Jesus Christ from the dead, then He chose to exalt Him to His right hand. He chose to give Him the promise of the Holy Spirit, not in the way that it was given to us … to reveal things of the Spirit, but so that Jesus could be the One to “shed forth” the Holy Spirit to the rest of us.
This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear. For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”’ Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” (Acts 2:32-36)
In verse 36, it seems that now God the Father has made a choice once again, choosing to make this Jesus Christ both Lord (kurios, G2962, meaning owner, master, ruler) and Christ (Christos, G5547, meaning the Anointed or Redeemer). In the Bible, anointing was used to consecrate people for special offices. High priests were anointed, kings were anointed, regular priests were anointed, and prophets were anointed. This begs the question, “What was Christ anointed to do?”
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound (Isa. 61:1)
As “God’s Anointed,” Jesus Christ has been fulfilling this ministry since He was born of Mary . This didn’t just happen brethren. These things are the result of God the Father’s choices — there’s no other way Jesus could have been appointed King of kings and Lord (kurios) of lords.
But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a tree. Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.” (Acts 5:29-32)
Here we find the apostles making and voicing a right choice before the high priest, the captain of the temple and the chief priests. They declare Jesus to be their “Prince,” which is translated from the Greek word archegos (G747). It means the chief leader or author, and also used to describe Jesus as the “Author and Finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2) and “the Captain of our salvation” (Heb. 2:10).
Agreeing With God
Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus, who was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was faithful in all His house. (Heb 3:1-2)
What would you give to be included in this “holy brethren” group? All human beings want to be in the “in crowd,” right? I’d give just about anything to be “in” with this crowd. So we ask, what God wants of us to reach this level, and we see instructions to contemplate and think deeply about … to consider.
So also Christ did not glorify Himself to become High Priest, but it was He who said to Him: “You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.” As He also says in another place: “You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek”; who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear, and though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, called by God as High Priest “according to the order of Melchizedek” (Heb. 5:5-10)
We are to recognize and confess and profess Jesus Christ as both Apostle and High Priest on the authority of God the Father, Who appointed Him and sent Him out (which is what “apostle” means). Before any other apostle was chosen, God the Father chose His apostle (John 17:3). How many times does God have to say something in the scriptures before human beings get the point? This word apostello (G649) is used in reference to Jesus Christ no less than 24 times in the 4 gospels. He was and is the “One sent” by God the Father. This is God the Father choosing and sending His Son for a specific job, and appointing Him to fill specific roles.
Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Phil. 2:9-11)
Look at this brethren … the Father is glorified when we “agree with Him” (that’s what “confess” means) that Jesus Christ is our kurios. He’s the one who gave Jesus “all authority in heaven and on earth” (Matt 28:18) and that authority remains all His to this day.
Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. (John 17:1-2)
Here we see another choice of God the Father, where He puts all flesh under the power and authority of Jesus Christ. Notice that includes the power to give His followers – the people who are chosen by God – eternal life.
The choices that God has made should lead us to make right and wise choices about our own course of life. If we make choices in line with God’s will, we won’t find ourselves regretting the choices we’ve made in the end with the words, “if I had listened, I wouldn’t be here today … living and dying with the choices I’ve made.” God speaks of our latter end, and that is what He is mainly concerned with. He wants us to live forever!