We were in Minneapolis this weekend helping my daughter and family move down the hall from a one-bedroom to a two-bedroom apartment (more Calvin time too). This move is just one more example of God’s kind provisions for this young family. They will certainly benefit from a little more space and it will allow parents and baby to have their own rooms.
We visited my son’s church Sunday in downtown Minneapolis, Bethlehem Baptist. Pastor John Piper taught on John 14:25-31. His message as usual gave me much to consider. Let me share two teachings that have attached themselves to me.
(1) John 14:30 “I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me.”
Jesus explains to his already worried friends that Satan, who entered Judas, a is coming; Satan is coming and the events of the next 24 hours will be set in motion. However, Jesus assures his followers that Satan has no claim on him. What is about to happen is not of Satan’s doing. The tempter and accuser has no claim on Jesus, a sinless man. There is no chink in his armor, no hook, no allurement by which Satan can entice Jesus to sin or accuse him before the Father. b
I want you to know, Jesus says, and I want the world to know that demonic betraying and demonic denying and demonic lying are not ruling this night. Love is ruling this night. I am obeying the Father (verse 31b) “so that the world may know that I love the Father.”
(2) John 14:31 “…I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.”
Jesus himself sets the evening in motion by finishing his quiet time with his disciples with the resolute command, “Rise, let us go…” Using a contemporary phrase, Jesus is saying in effect, “Let’s roll.”
Before they depart, though, Jesus would have his disciples know the motivation that will cause him to accomplish what his Father has asked of him. The motivation is none other than a visual for the world – that they may know that he loves the Father. “God so loved the world,” c and that will be demonstrated in the next day. But here we see that Jesus so loved the Father that he would endure the upcoming day to declare it. This sinless One would willingly become our sin and absorb the wrath of his Father upon that sin. Yes; he would do as commanded…so all would know that Jesus loves his Father. This eternal love was put on display for all the world to see, and because of it our salvation was secured.
The cross was not at root the coercion of evil; it was the compliance of love. The roots of the cross reach back before creation into the eternal Godhead where the God the Son has always infinitely loved God the Father.
Oh, we have a great Savior!
[Painting: Gerbrand van den Eeckhout (1621-1674)]