spiritwarfare

Submission and Obedience

Our Living Intercessor: The Second Adam!

We know that the Godhead was present when the earth was refurbished in Genesis 1:2, for it reads: "...and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters"; and, in 1:26, where God said, "Let Us make man in Our image..." John 1:1-3 tells us that the Word, being Jesus, was in the beginning with God and all things were made by Him. Thus, we see God the Father, the Son, and the Spirit of God. The Three in One!

The earth that was created perfectly in every dimension in Genesis 1:1 became chaotic and totally dark, without beauty and empty. That cataclysmic, catastrophe happened when Lucifer became proud of his beauty, as described in Isaiah 14, verse 12 and beyond. He preferred the fawning of his angelic followers over his comeliness and beauty to honoring God's glory. He elevated himself to the same plane as God, his Creator. That great sin of pride and rebellion created an unfathomable breach in the heavenly realm, so that the bowels of the once-magnificent planet became the holding place of hell for the devil and his minions.

Step beyond, and God created a new heaven and a new earth in Genesis 1:2, again utterly perfect. His final act was to take the dust of the ground and form a human whom God called Adam. The earth had a rebirth! and, from it God ultimately produced Man! Oh, how this truth portrays the wasteland of the human heart in the lostness of sin until the new birth of salvation. Forgiveness for sin and newness of life are extended by Jesus to the one who believes in His sacrifice to be their own substitute and savior.

Genesis going forward relates the fall of man into sin and his need for a substitute to die in his place so man could avoid condemnation in the hell buried beneath his feet. Right away God promised a Seed in Genesis 3:15 who would crush satan's head and defeat him forever.

These truths confirm that there had to have been an agreement in the Godhead before the Creation that Jesus would become the Lamb to be slain for the sin of the world.

His was no ordinary birth.

The New Testament is the interpreter and elaborator of the Old Testament and tells us that the Messiah promised so long before was conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the virgin, Mary. Angels announced His emergence as a pauper with glorious song from the throne room of God. Wealthy seers trekked from the Far East to Bethlehem at the sight of His special star. Their priceless gifts underwrote the Holy Family's flight into Egypt to escape Herod's death threat against all boys two years and under. What a revolution and blood shed, heartache and death Jesus' birth caused when He came into the world!

For the next 30 years He slipped into obscurity, seen only at 12 years of age when He taught scribes and Pharisees, the learned men of their day, with authority and wisdom beyond His years.

He was no ordinary boy.

Conceived by the Holy Spirit, Jesus did not inherit the sinful nature with which all other of mankind are born. In Him was the union of earth's flesh with God's Spirit. He was a new creation. The incomprehensible union of God with man! The Bible calls Him the Second Adam.

For Jesus to come in flesh, He had to go through an inexplicable transformation. Philippians 2:6-7: "...who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men."

Hebrews 2 says it this way: "Therefore, since His children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil." In the regions of eternity, Jesus made a decision that changed Him forever. He relinquished His equality with God to be made as a human. Though He lived on earth for only 33 years, His change and identification with US, human-kind, is forever. Did you get that? He is one with us for all eternity!

Jesus lived as a lad with His earthly parents, but in all His doing and growing up, He never sinned. While there is some suggestion outside of Scripture that He lived with the Essenes and was taught by them, we do not know that with certainty. Therefore, He grew up with brothers and sisters in a Hebrew family unlike any other Jewish boy ever born.

He was no ordinary man.

As God incarnate in human flesh, Jesus lived a perfect and holy life for 33 years. He approached John the Baptist at the Jordan river in the wilderness to be baptized with others of Israel who had flocked to hear this strange man preach. Unlike the rest who were baptized for repentance, Jesus went under and came up from the water "to fulfill all righteousness". The heavens opened above Him and the Holy Spirit descended in the form of a dove and sat on Him. The Father's voice from heaven then declared: "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."Matthew 3:15-17. Ah! The Trinity manifested again at the inauguration of Jesus' ministry on earth.

Although He was conceived by the Holy Spirit Who lived in Him during His developmental years, Jesus received a baptism in the Holy Spirit to initiate His earthly ministry. Thereafter, Jesus declared of Himself, "I speak what I hear the Father say." He did not speak from equal authority as God the Father; that He had relinquished to become incarnate in human flesh. He spoke as One who was filled and led by the Holy Spirit and His voice. He ministered in the power of the Holy Spirit when He taught and healed those who were ill, deformed or demonized; He made blind eyes see, lame legs straight and strong, and those who had died rise again and live. All in the power of the Holy Spirit. He walked and lived in that power.

That is why He said that His followers who would be completely His would do the same and even greater when He had risen to the Father's right hand and the Father had given the Holy Spirit to the Church.

Through His marvelous and humiliating descent into bondservant-hood, Jesus won the victory over death and the grave for all who are IN Christ. He broke the power of sin and death that ruled sinful humanity. "Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death are subject to slavery all their lives." Hebrews 2:14-15.

Through His death and resurrection Jesus abolished all rule and all authority and power resident on earth and in the second heaven where dwell all the demonic powers of satan, the rest of the fallen angels and their rule. "...in the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come." Ephesians 1:20-21. Scripture furthers that truth: "...for our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12.

He walked in supernatural power

We know that while on earth Jesus was in complete subjection to His Father: "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone." Matthew 24:36. He was not on an equal par with the Father, but rather was His bondservant who deferred knowledge and power to God His Father.

"For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak." John 12:49. Again, Jesus authenticated His servanthood to God, the Father through the Spirit Who conceived Him and then infilled Him at His baptism. Again, "...so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me." John 14:31.

Jesus never renounced His humanity.

As God's emissary and the demonstration of all God is as incarnate in human flesh, Jesus defeated satan and evil to win back the kingdoms of earth to the Father. "When all things are subjected to Him (Jesus), then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, so that God may be all in all." I Corinthians 15:28. Even as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, victory declared and won in Revelation, Jesus is the Celebrant! But then, as a bondservant, one day He will defer His eminence to His Father, so that God will be the ultimate, absolute Ruler of the kingdom on earth. What an awesome day that will be!

Though Jesus never denied His humanity, He did not abnegate His God-ness. He declared that "I and the Father are One." John 10:30. "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves. John 14:10-11.

How Can It Be?

Jesus is both God and man: the God-Man. Permanently. Forever. That makes Him our intercessor into all eternity. Our visible Intercession. Every time we see Jesus, we will see our humanity reflected in Him. Every time He looks at us, He will see His personhood reflected in our purity and holiness. Every time God looks at all of us, He will see His Son and the brothers He has brought to Heaven to live forever!

We are and will be one with the Godhead. Because we 'are' one with Him now, Jesus said: "Truly, truly I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father." John 14:12. He went to the Father, so the Holy Spirit could be poured out on us. Just as Jesus was baptized in the Spirit, we must be, also. Because the day in which we live is so complete with technology of every sort, we can accomplish nearly anything without seeking God's help and intervention. Convenience is a horrible challenge to our developing deep dependence on God. But, we must. We must learn to walk by faith in the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus did. So must we as His children and Bride.

Perhaps in the verse just cited above, Jesus wasn't referring to the healing miracles as His works. Perhaps He meant our works will be those of persevering even when all the forces of hell are entrenched against us just as they were against Him. Maybe He meant that when we're faced with horrible unbelief by our friends and family, we will stand with God no matter what persecution is waged against us.

Some of us will suffer in prison and even have our lives snuffed out for Jesus' sake. Others of us will be persecuted and even tortured time and again, day in and day out, to make us renounce our faith in Him. Might it be that the greater works He referred to for us would be the endurance of torture and pain days and years in length while holding true to our faith in Him and declaring so to our enemies?

None of us knows now what lies ahead. Our trust in God is for today. Our future is entrusted to His hand. One thing is sure: Jesus is our Living Intercessor, seated at God's right hand: "...Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us." Romans 8:34. He will sustain us no matter what comes.

"Search me, O God, and know my heart;

Try me and know my anxious thoughts;

And see if there be any hurtful way in me,

And lead me in the everlasting way." Psalm 139:23-24.

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Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®
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