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Archive for September 7th, 2011

FOLLOWING THE LAMB

4. THE IMPORTANCE OF THE INDIVIDUAL

Poul Madsen

One of those that heard John speak was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. He first findeth his own brother Simon and saith unto him, We have found the Messiah, which is being interpreted the Christ. And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.” John 1:40-42

GOD is a God of repetition, as we have seen, but He is not a God of uniformity. He has created millions of human beings, and all of them have two feet, two hands, a nose between two eyes, and two ears. This is repetition on a big scale. Yet each being is unique. None of them is exactly like the others. This is what our God is like, He is the God of repetition who hates uniformity. Satan is just the opposite. He insists on uniformity, and he often seems to have his way. All the big political powers are built on uniformity. You cannot become a big man in this world if you allow people to remain independent. Sometimes this principle seems to enter into the Church, so that people in a particular church seem just like one another. They are without originality; they have become copies; they do the same things, speak the same language and use the same phrases. This is most boring, and it is certainly not what it means to be holy. Far from being of God, such sameness is very, very human, and all too common.

Until now we have not been given the names of the two disciples of John who heard him and followed Jesus. In verse 40, however, we get a name, Andrew. Let us look at Andrew and find out what kind of a man he was. He is called the brother of Simon Peter, and I feel sorry for him for he is always so described. “One of his disciples Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said unto him …” (John 6:8). “The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother …” (Matthew 10:2). “Simon (whom he also named Peter) and Andrew his brother …” (Luke 6:14). Almost the only place where poor Andrew is allowed not to be called Peter’s brother is in Mark’s Gospel, which was written under Peter’s influence. In that list of apostles he is just called Andrew (Mark 3:18). I have a brother by the name of Ole, who is twelve years younger than I, and I certainly would not like to be called Poul, the brother of Ole. I equally doubt whether my brother would like to be called Ole, the brother of Poul. But Andrew is always called the brother of Peter. He was not so important as Peter, as we know, but still he became just as indispensable as Peter. He became a real man in his own right, a unique personality, as we can verify in these verses.

“ONE of the two which heard John speak and followed him was Andrew. Andrew heard without the help of Peter. He heard for himself, and then he followed for himself, without the help of Peter. He found for himself, without the help of Peter and, having found, “he first findeth his own brother Simon”. The word ‘first’ indicates that he found others after Peter. It was he who found the lad with the five loaves and two fishes. Andrew was aware of that boy. Such were the qualities of Andrew, the brother of Peter. Humanly speaking he lived under the shadow of Peter, but really he lived in the light of the Lord, and therefore he had his own testimony, which he had not learned from Peter. He heard for himself: “Behold the Lamb of God”. He heard that without Peter’s help. And then he was able [84/85] to say: “We have found the Messiah”. It is tremendous to listen to this. Andrew, the brother of Peter, heard that this was the Lamb of God and then, without Peter’s help, he understood that this embodiment of meekness was also the Almighty one. The Lamb is the Almighty. It made his personality, to know this for himself. How had he learned it? Well, we have already noted what the Lord Jesus did about those who came to Him as a gift of the Father. Andrew came for himself, the Lord Jesus received him as a gift and gave him the Father’s words, and Andrew received these for himself. Andrew, the brother of Peter, received through Christ the words which the Father had given. Those words were, of course, the Old Testament. We know that John the Baptist and his disciples had seen the Holy Spirit descend upon Jesus and rest upon Him: “John bare record saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him” (v.32). It rested upon Him. And then Andrew, the brother of Peter, came to the Lord for himself and the Lord gave him the words about that resting Spirit. “And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: and the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him” (Isaiah 11:1-2). Andrew did not learn this from his brother Peter; he learned it from the Son of God. “The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord” (v.2). “With righteousness shall he judge the poor and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked” (v.4). The Spirit rested, abode on the Lord and Andrew, the brother of Peter, understood this and was able to identify Him as the Christ. He did not say: ‘We have found a man and I think that he may be the Messiah’, or ‘We have found one and I should not at all be surprised if he turned out to be the Messiah’. No, there were no doubts in his mind and Andrew, the brother of Peter, was able to say: “We have found the Messiah” and in this way Andrew became a real man. He had found the Messiah, and in doing so had found himself. Like Paul, he could now say “By the grace of God I am what I am” and I am Andrew. He had become a great man, so great that he did not say ‘I have found the Messiah’. It is only small men who have to speak about themselves. He forgot himself, in asserting that it was ‘we’ who had found the Messiah.

ANDREW was now a new man, and unique, even though he was still called the brother of Peter. He was an example of Biblical renewal, by which common men are made unique, real personalities. Our limited thought regards renewal in two ways. One is by repair. When my wife repairs my shirt. I say that it is like new. But repair is not Biblical renewal. The other way is by substitution, starting with new material, as though we had put Andrew aside and created another man. I buy a shirt and, of course, it is a new shirt. But neither is this the Biblical way of renewal. The Biblical way is not repair and it is not substitution, it is the miracle of renewal, so that Andrew is still the same Andrew, and yet an altogether new Andrew, a real man. This makes man the most interesting being on earth, and shows that the Creator respects what He has created. The Lord had created Andrew different from all others and then had given him a God-given personality. From the outside Andrew was unique, but now as an inner personality he was unique too. He had heard a wonderful message: “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world”. The sin was the self-centredness of the world. Through that message Andrew was liberated, delivered from self-centredness and got a new centre. His personality was no longer centred in his ego but in Christ, and so he became the real Andrew, though he remained the brother of Peter. This was true liberty, and Andrew could now say: ‘I am what I am by the grace of God’. This testimony was convincing, because he was a real man, convincing even to his big brother, Peter. If my brother came to me and said something about having found the Messiah, I would probably reply: ‘There are many crazy people nowadays!’ Peter could have said the same. He could have answered: ‘Oh, we have heard lots of that sort of thing. There are many idiots and fanatical people, so don’t come to me with a story like that. After all, who are you to tell me anything? You are only my brother Andrew.’ But as Peter looked at Andrew, it was as though he saw a new Andrew, a man quite natural, delivered, unartificial, not dramatic, but a real man whose testimony was most convincing. If you want people to believe your testimony you must be truthful, and you can only be truthful when you are yourself, and you can only be yourself when you are in Christ. If you copy others, don’t expect people to believe you. Although Andrew was Peter’s brother, he was such a new man, liberated and original, that Peter was ready to listen to [85/86] him. People will listen when they meet such a man. I am sorry to say that there are so few of them, for Christians tend to try to copy others instead of being themselves in Christ. Peter was, of course, much bigger than Andrew, for he was never called Peter the brother of Andrew, but always the other way round, yet he was ready to listen to this smaller brother and be brought by him to Jesus. Andrew made no effort to usurp Peter’s place, to try to be superior to him, but was content as Andrew, the brother of Peter, to lead this brother to Christ. He was not asserting himself, not fighting for his own rights, but he was so free that he could be himself by forgetting himself and just living before the face of Christ and not before men. I wish that this spirit could be found more in our churches. The Lord does not want us to copy one another, for such copying opens the door to fear — the fear of man. How many clouds would disappear in our assembly life if we had enough faith in God to allow our neighbours to remain what they are in Christ.

NOW let us look at Peter. “When Jesus beheld him …”. How did He look on him? May I ask you how you think Abraham looked on his dear old Sarah when she was ninety? I am afraid that she must have been rather wrinkled, with not much beauty left, as well as being barren. But how did Abraham look upon her? He saw the wrinkles, and perhaps a slightly bowed stature, and he knew of her barrenness, and yet he called her ‘the mother of multitudes’. This was because he was looking at her in the light of divine promises, and in the light of divine power. We ask again, How did the Lord look upon Peter? Of course He saw the barrenness of Peter, and that is why He said, Thou art Simon. But He saw more than that. He looked at Peter in the light of His own power and intentions, and therefore he said: ‘Thou shalt be called a rock’. The Lord spoke the word of faith to Peter, and because He spoke the word of faith, He imparted faith to Peter, creating through the word of faith and the spirit of faith that very rock nature which could never have been found in Peter himself.

This is a very important matter for our church life. How do we look at those who have come to the Lord, and how do we speak to them? You have a brother who has come to the Lord. You look upon him, see his barrenness and his faults, and you say that nothing good will ever come from him. If you say this, you will help to produce defeat in him, and you will be the one really culpable because whatever is not of faith is sin, and you have treated him without faith. The Lord Jesus is quite different. He produced faith in those men who followed Him. How seldom do you find Him correcting them? And you can never find Him expressing despair about them as though no good could ever come of them. He might have said: ‘I have been trying for some years with you, but since it is obvious that there is no progress and no growth, I think that I will give you up’. Yet the very night in which they were going to betray and forsake Him, He still looked on them in faith and said: “Ye are they that have continued with me in my temptations, and I appoint unto you a kingdom”. This was not because of any virtues in them but because He dealt with them in the light of His own power. It was in this spirit that He called Peter a rock. There seemed no reality for Him to base His words on. He could only speak in this way because He was either a foolish fanatic or the Son of God.

HE did not build on anything in them, but He had the grace and the power and the love as well as the wisdom to produce a Peter out of a Simon. Now He does not want us to be blind about one another’s faults, treating everything with a blue-eyed optimism which pretends that all is well when it is not. No, it demands a life and walk with the Lord which exercises faith in Him and can reproduce that life of faith in others. You can never help a brother or sister by your doubts, nor by mere corrections, nor even by setting a high standard; what you have to do is to impart that high standard to them. Paul was a master in this art. He refused to know any man after the flesh, but knew everyone in Christ and through Christ. In this way he was a wonderful creator of men who were not caricatures, not imitators but real men. Not proud, and not with a false humility, but just themselves in God.

This is the basis of real fellowship, as the apostles showed. Andrew, the brother of Peter, has something to give even to Peter, and Peter, though Simon the weak in himself, is made strong in Christ to have something to give Andrew. Andrew has no inferiority complex, even though [86/87] he is always known in this secondary character as Peter’s brother; and Peter has no sense of superiority even with his young brother, Andrew. They are just themselves, not trying to be like each other, and so are able to enjoy free fellowship in Christ. Such a life requires a real faith in God, for otherwise one will impose himself on the other and try to produce fellowship by means of fear. We can only have true fellowship in the freedom of faith and love. This does not mean that we have no standards, that anything is good enough. No, far from it, but it does mean that we must learn to look on one another with faith, speak to one another in faith, even though we may need to give a word of correction. The list of those who follow the Lamb is a very long one, and on it there is a place for us. Like Andrew, we may always be connected with some other name, but we must learn to follow for ourselves. Andrew must not try to be like Peter, and Peter must not try to make him do so. Nor must we get involved in artificiality or imitation. Our God is the Creator and the Redeemer, and He always works through the Spirit of faith.
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http://www.austin-sparks.net/mags/ttm02-5.html#84

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Nicu Wagner – Traim momente sfinte de dulce partasie

http://youtu.be/0TsiUhW0j6c

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Follow The Lamb. Jules Riding in concert.

http://youtu.be/y70ZQyKmDdYules

Philippians 3:10-11 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.

Praise God and The Lamb!

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<< John 17 >>
Darby’s Bible Synopsis

Chapter 17 is divided thus: John 17:1-5 relate to Christ Himself, to His taking His position in glory, to His work, and to that glory as belonging to His Person, and the result of His work. John 17:1-3 present His new position in two aspects: “glorify thy Son” power over all flesh, for eternal life to those given to Him; Verses 4-5 (John 17:4-5), His work and its results. In John 17:6-13. He speaks of His disciples as put into this relationship with the Father by His revealing His name to them, and then His having given them the words which He had Himself received, that they might enjoy all the full blessedness of this relationship. He also prays for them that they may be one as He and the Father were. In John 17:14-21, we find their consequent relationship to the world; in John 17:20-21, He introduces those who should believe through their means into the enjoyment of their blessing. John 17:22-26 make known the result, both future, and in this world, for them: the possession of the glory which Christ Himself had received from the Father to be with Him, enjoying the sight of His glory that the Father’s love should be with them here below, even as Christ Himself had been its object and that Christ Himself should be in them. The last three Verses alone (John 17:24-26) take the disciples up to heaven as a supplemental truth.

This is a brief summary of this marvellous chapter, in which we are admitted, not to the discourse of Christ with man, but to hear the desires of His heart, when He pours it out to His Father for the blessing of those that are His own. Wonderful grace that permits us to hear these desires, and to understand all the privileges that flow from His thus caring for us, from our being the subject of intercourse between the Father and the Son, of their common love towards us, when Christ expresses His own desires that which He has at heart, and which He presents to the Father as His own personal wishes!

Some explanations may assist in apprehending the meaning of certain passages in this marvellous and precious chapter. May the Spirit of God aid us!

The Lord, whose looks of love had until then been directed towards His disciples on the earth, now lifts His eyes to heaven as He addresses His Father. The hour was come to glorify the Son, in order that from the glory He might glorify the Father. This is, speaking generally, the new position. His career here was finished, and He had to ascend on high. Two things were connected with this power over all flesh, and the gift of eternal life to as many as the Father had given Him. “The head of every man is Christ.” Those whom the Father had given Him receive eternal life from Him who has gone up on high. Eternal life was the knowledge of the Father, the only true God, and of Jesus Christ, whom He had sent. The knowledge of the Almighty gave assurance to the pilgrim of faith; that of Jehovah, the certainty of the fulfilment of the promises of God to Israel; that of the Father, who sent the Son, Jesus Christ (the Anointed Man and the Saviour), who was that life itself, and so received as a present thing (1 John 1:1-4), was life eternal. True knowledge here was not outward protection or future hope, but the communication, in life, of communion with the Being thus known to the soul of communion with God Himself fully known as the Father and the Son. Here it is not the divinity of His Person that is before us in Christ, though a divine Person alone could be in such a place and so speak, but the place that He had taken in fulfilling the counsels of God. That which is said of Jesus in this chapter could only be said of One who is God; but the point treated is that of His place in the counsels of God, and not the revelation of His nature. He receives all from His Father He is sent by Him, His Father glorifies Him. [See Note #63]

We see the same truth of the communication of eternal life in connection with His divine nature and His oneness with the Father in 1 John 5:20. Here He fulfils the Father’s will, and is dependent on Him in the place that He has taken, and that He is going to take, even in the glory, however glorious His nature may be. So, also, in chapter 5 of our Gospel, He quickens whom He will; here it is those whom the Father has given Him. And the life He gives is realised in the knowledge of the Father, and of Jesus Christ whom He has sent.

He now declares the conditions under which He takes this place on high. He had perfectly glorified the Father on earth. Nothing that manifested God the Father had been wanting, whatever might be the difficulty; the contradiction of sinners was but an occasion of so doing. But this very thing made the sorrow infinite. Nevertheless Jesus had accomplished that glory on the earth in the face of all that opposed itself. His glory with the Father in heaven was but the just consequence the necessary consequence, in mere justice. Moreover Jesus had had this glory with His Father before the world was. His work and His Person alike gave Him a right to it. The Father glorified on earth by the Son: the Son glorified with the Father on high: such is the revelation contained in these Verses a right, proceeding from His Person as Son, but to a glory into which He entered as man, in consequence of having, as such, perfectly glorified His Father on earth. These are the Verses that relate to Christ. This, moreover, gives the relationship in which He enters into this new place as man, His Son, and the work by which He does so in righteousness, and thus gives us a title, and the character in which we have a place there.

He now speaks of the disciples; how they entered into their peculiar place in connection with this position of Jesus into this relationship with His Father. He had manifested the Father’s name to those whom the Father had given Him out of the world. They belonged to the Father, and the Father had given them to Jesus. They had kept the Father’s word. It was faith in the revelation which the Son had made of the Father. The words of the prophets were true. The faithful enjoyed them: they sustained their faith. But the word of the Father, by Jesus, revealed the Father Himself, in Him whom the Father had sent, and put him who received them into the place of love, which was Christ’s place; and to know the Father and the Son was life eternal. This was quite another thing from hopes connected with the Messiah or what Jehovah had given Him. It is thus, also, that the disciples are presented to the Father; not as receiving Christ in the character of Messiah, and honouring Him as possessing His power by that title. They had known that all which Jesus had was of the Father. He was then the Son; His relationship to the Father was acknowledged. Dull of comprehension as they were, the Lord recognises them according to His appreciation of their faith, according to the object of that faith, as known to Himself, and not according to their intelligence. Precious truth! (compare John 14:7).

They acknowledged Jesus, then, as receiving all from the Father, not as Messiah from Jehovah; for Jesus had given them all the words that the Father had given Him. Thus He had brought them in their own souls into the consciousness of the relationship between the Son and the Father, and into full communion, according to the communications of the Father to the Son in that relationship. He speaks of their position through faith not of their realisation of this position. Thus they had acknowledged that Jesus came forth from the Father, and that He came with the Father’s authority the Father had sent Him. It was from thence He came, and He came furnished with the authority of a mission from the Father. This was their position by faith.

And now the disciples being already in this position He places them, according to His thoughts and His desires, before the Father in prayer. He prays for them, distinguishing them completely from the world. The time would come when (according to Psalm 2) He would ask of the Father with reference to the world; He was not doing so now, but for those out of the world, whom the Father had given Him. For they were the Father’s. For all that is the Father’s is in essential opposition to the world (compare 1 John 2:16).

The Lord presents to the Father two motives for His request:1st, They were the Father’s, so that the Father, for His own glory, and because of His affection for that which belonged to Him, should keep them; 2nd, Jesus was glorified in them, so that if Jesus was the object of the Father’s affection, for that reason also the Father should keep them. Besides, the interests of the Father and the Son could not be separated. If they were the Father’s they were, in fact, the Son’s; and it was but an example of that universal truth all that was the Son’s was the Father’s, and all that was the Father’s was the Son’s. What a place for us! to be the object of this mutual affection, of these common and inseparable interests of the Father and the Son. This is the great principle the great foundation of the prayer of Christ. He prayed the Father for His disciples, because they belonged to the Father; Jesus must needs, therefore, seek their blessing. The Father would be thoroughly interested for them, because in them the Son was to be glorified.

He then presents the circumstances to which the prayer applied. He was no longer in this world Himself. They would be deprived of His personal care as present with them, but they would be in this world, while He was coming to the Father. This is the ground of His request with regard to their position. He puts them in connection, therefore, with the Holy Father all the perfect love of such a Father the Father of Jesus and their Father, maintaining (it was their blessing) the holiness that His nature required, if they were to be in relationship with Him. It was direct guardianship. The Father would keep in His own name those whom He had given to Jesus. The connection thus was direct. Jesus committed them to Him, and that, not only as belonging to the Father, but now as His own, invested with all the value which that would give them in the Father’s eyes.

The object of His solicitude was to keep them in unity, even as the Father and the Son are one. One only divine Spirit was the bond of that oneness. In this sense the bond was truly divine. So far as they were filled with the Holy Spirit, they had but one mind, one counsel, one aim. This is the unity referred to here. The Father and the Son were their only object; the accomplishing their counsels and objects their only pursuit. They had only the thoughts of God; because God Himself, the Holy Ghost, was the source of their thoughts. It was one only divine power and nature that united them the Holy Ghost. The mind, the aim, the life, the whole moral existence, were consequently one. The Lord speaks, necessarily, at the height of His own thoughts, when He expresses His desires for them. If it is a question of realisation, we must then think of man; yet of a strength also that is perfected in weakness.

This is the sum of the Lord’s desires sons, saints, under the Father’s care; one, not by an effort or by agreement, but according to divine power. He being here, had kept them in the Father’s name, faithful to accomplish all that the Father had committed to Him, and to lose none of those that were His. As to Judas, it was only the fulfilment of the word. The guardianship of Jesus present in the world could now no longer exist. But He spoke these things, being still here, the disciples hearing them, in order that they might understand that they were placed before the Father in the same position that Christ had held, and that they might thus have fulfilled in themselves, in this same relationship, the joy which Christ had possessed. What unutterable grace! They had lost Him, visibly, to find themselves (by Him and in Him) in His own relationship with the Father, enjoying all that He enjoyed in that communion here below, as being in His place in their own relationship with the Father. Therefore He had imparted to them all the words that the Father had given Him the communications of His love to Himself, when walking as Son in that place here below; and, in the especial name of “Holy Father,” by which the Son Himself addressed Him from the earth, the Father was to keep those whom the Son had left there. Thus should they have His joy fulfilled in themselves.

This was their relationship to the Father, Jesus being away. He turns now to their relationship with the world, in consequence of the former.

He gave them the word of His Father not the words to bring them into communion with Him, but His word the testimony of what He was. And the world had hated them as it had hated Jesus (the living and personal testimony of the Father) and the Father Himself. Being thus in relationship with the Father, who had taken them out from the men of the world, and having received the Father’s word (and eternal life in the Son in that knowledge), they were not of the world even as Jesus was not of the world: and therefor the world hated them. Nevertheless the Lord does not pray that they might be taken out of it; but that the Father should keep them from the evil. He enters into the detail of His desires in this respect, grounded on their not being of the world. He repeats this thought as the basis of their position here below. “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” What then were they to be? By what rule, by what model, were they to be formed? By the truth, and the Father’s word is truth. Christ was always the Word, but the living Word among men. In the scriptures we possess it, written and stedfast: they reveal Him, bear witness to Him. It was thus that the disciples were to be set apart. “Sanctify them by thy truth: thy word is the truth.” It was this, personally, that they were to be formed by, the Father’s word, as He was revealed in Jesus.

Their mission follows. Jesus sends them into the world, as the Father had sent Him into the world; into the world in no wise of the world. They are sent into it on the part of Christ: were they of it, they could not be sent into it. But it was not only the Father’s word which was the truth, nor the communication of the Father’s word by Christ present with His disciples (points of which from John 17:14 till now Jesus had been speaking, “I have given them thy word”): He sanctified Himself. He set Himself apart as a heavenly man above the heavens, a glorified man in the glory, in order that all truth might shine forth in Him, in His Person, raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father all that the Father is being thus displayed in Him; the testimony of divine righteousness, of divine love, of divine power, totally overturning the lie of Satan, by which man had been deceived and falsity brought into the world; the perfect model of that which man was according to the counsels of God, and as the expression of His power morally and in glory the image of the invisible God, the Son, and in glory. Jesus set Himself apart, in this place, in order that the disciples might be sanctified by the communication to them of what He was; for this communication was the truth, and created them in the image of that which it revealed. So that it was the Father’s glory, revealed by Him on earth, and the glory into which He had ascended as man; for this is the complete result the illustration in glory of the way in which He had set Himself apart for God, but on behalf of His own. Thus there is not only the forming and governing of the thoughts by the word, setting us apart morally to God, but the blessed affections flowing from our having this truth in the Person of Christ, our hearts connected with Him in grace. This ends the second part of that which related to the disciples, in communion and in testimony.

In John 17:20, He declares that He prays also for those who should believe on Him through their means. Here the character of the unity differs a little from that in John 17:11. There, in speaking of the disciples, He says, “as we are”; for the oneness of the Father and the Son shewed itself in fixed purpose, object, love, work, everything. Therefore the disciples were to have that kind of unity. Here those who believed, inasmuch as receiving and taking part in that which was communicated, had their oneness in the power of the blessing into which they were brought. By one Spirit, in which they were necessarily united, they had a place in communion with the Father and the Son. It was the communion of the Father and of the Son (compare 1 John 1:3; and how similar the language of the apostle is to that of Christ!). Thus, the Lord asks that they may be one in them the Father and the Son. This was the means to make the world believe that the Father had sent the Son; for here were those that had believed it, who, however opposed their interests and habits might be, however strong their prejudices, yet were one (by this powerful revelation and by this work) in the Father and the Son.

Here His prayer ends, but not all His converse with His Father. He gives us (and here the witnesses and the believers are together) the glory which the Father has given Him. It is the basis of another, a third, [See Note #64] mode of oneness. All partake, it is true, in glory, of this absolute oneness in thought, object, fixed purpose, which is found in the oneness of the Father and the Son. Perfection being come, that which the Holy Ghost had produced spiritually, His absorbing energy shutting out every other, was natural to all in glory.

But the principle of the existence of this unity, added yet another character to that truth that of manifestation, or at least of an inward source which realised its manifestation in them: “I in them,” said Jesus, “and thou in me.” This is not the simple, perfect oneness of John 17:11, nor the mutuality and communion of John 17:21. It is Christ in all believers, and the Father in Christ, a unity in manifestation in glory, not merely in communion a oneness in which all is perfectly connected with its source. And Christ, whom alone they were to manifest, is in them; and the Father, whom Christ had perfectly manifested, is in Him. The world (for this will be in the millennial glory, and manifested to the world) will then know (He does not say, “that it may believe”) that Jesus had been sent by the Father (how deny it, when He should be seen in glory?) and, moreover, that the disciples had been loved by the Father, even as Jesus Himself was loved. The fact of their possessing the same glory as Christ would be the proof.

But there was yet more. There is that which the world will not see, because it will not be in it. “Father, I will that they whom thou hast given me be with me where I am.” There we are not only like Christ (conformed to the Son, bearing the image of the heavenly man before the eyes of the world), but with Him where He is. Jesus desires that we should see His glory. [See Note #65] Solace and encouragement for us, after having partaken of His shame: but yet more precious, inasmuch as we see that He who has been dishonoured as man, and because He became man for our sake, shall, even on that account, be glorified with a glory above all other glory, save His who has put all things under Him. For He speaks here of given glory. It is this which is so precious to us, because He has acquired it by His sufferings for us, and yet it is what was perfectly due to Him the just reward for having, in them, perfectly glorified the Father. Now, this is a peculiar joy, entirely beyond the world. The world will see the glory that we have in common with Christ, and will know that we have been loved as Christ was loved. But there is a secret for those who love Him, which belongs to His Person and to our association with Himself. The Father loved Him before the world was a love in which there is no question of comparison but of that which is infinite, perfect, and thus in itself satisfying. We shall share this in the sense of seeing our Beloved in it, and of being with Him, and of beholding the glory which the Father has given Him, according to the love wherewith He loved Him before the world had any part whatever in the dealings of God. Up to this we were in the world; here in heaven, out of all the world’s claims or apprehension (Christ seen in the fruit of that love which the Fatherhad for Him before the world existed). Christ, then, was the Father’s delight. We see Him in the eternal fruit of that love as Man. We shall be in it with Him for ever, to enjoy His being in it that our Jesus, our Beloved, is in it, and is what He is.

Meantime, being such, there was justice in the dealings of God with regard to His rejection. He had fully, perfectly, manifested the Father. The world had not known Him, but Jesus had known Him, and the disciples had known that the Father had sent Him. He appeals here, not to the holiness of the Father, that He might keep them according to that blessed name, but to the righteousness of the Father, that He might make a distinction between the world on one side, and Jesus with His own on the other; for there was the moral reason as well as the ineffable love of the Father for the Son. And Jesus would have us enjoy, while here below, the consciousness that the distinction has been made by the communications of grace, before it is made by judgment.

He had declared unto them the Father’s name, and would declare it, even when He had gone up on high, in order that the love wherewith the Father had loved Him might be in them (that their hearts might possess it in this world what grace!) and Jesus Himself in them, the communicator of that love, the source of strength to enjoy it, conducting it, so to speak, in all the perfection in which He enjoyed it, into their hearts, in which He dwelt Himself the strength, the life, the competency, the right, and the means of enjoying it thus, and as such, in the heart. For it is in the Son who declares it to us, that we know the name of the Father whom He reveals to us. That is, He would have us enjoy now that relationship in love in which we shall see Him in heaven. The world will know we have been loved as Jesus when we appear in the same glory with Him; but our part is to know it now, Christ being in us.

Note #63

The more we examine the Gospel of John, the more we shall see One who speaks and acts as a divine Person one with the Father alone could do, but yet always as One who had taken the place of a servant, and takes nothing to Himself, but receives all from His Father. “I have glorified thee”: “now glorify me.” What language of equality of nature and love! but He does not say, And now I will glorify myself. He has taken the place of man to receive all, though it be a glory He had with the Father before the world was. This is of exquisite beauty. I add, it was out of this the enemy sought to seduce Him, in vain, in the wilderness.

Note #64

There are three unities spoken of. First of the disciples, “as we are,” unity by the power of one Spirit in thought, purpose, mind, service, the Holy Ghost making them all one, their path in common, the expression of His mind and power, and of nothing else. Then, of those who should believe through their means, unity in communion with the Father and the Son, “one in us” still by the Holy Ghost but, as brought into that, as already said above, as in 1 John 1:3. Then unity in glory, “perfect in one,” in manifestation and descending revelation, the Father in the Son, and the Son in all of them. The second was for the world’s believing, the third for its knowing. The two first were literally accomplished according to the terms in which they are expressed. How far believers are departed from them since need not be said.

Note #65

This answers to Moses and Elias entering into the cloud, besides their display in the same glory as Christ, standing on the mountain.


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Synopsis of the Books of the Bible, by John Nelson Darby [1857-62]
Text Courtesy of Internet Sacred Texts Archive.

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http://darby.biblecommenter.com/john/17.htm

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