THE GENERATION OF JESUS CHRIST
Matthew 1:1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.
That word generation is the same Greek word translated, ages in Ephesians 3:5 & 21. It comes from the Greek word translated offspring in Revelation 22:16. Therefore we are not given here to see the origin of the eternal Son of God, so much as the history of the ages, and the offspring that was derived from him. For the eternal Son has always been! John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
Listen to him speak of himself as the Person of Wisdom, concerning his eternality: Proverbs 8:27 When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth: 28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep: 29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth: 30 Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;
And all persons born, all angels created, every creature in existence, the entire created order, along with all providences are from him, and for his glory! Colossians 1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: 17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
Ephesians 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: 11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: 12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
This awareness has been the very comfort of the believers souls amidst severe persecutions. Listen at the Psalmist as the description of his afflictions speak for all those in the fellowship of his sufferings: Psalm 31:13 For I have heard the slander of many: fear was on every side: while they took counsel together against me, they devised to take away my life. 14 But I trusted in thee, O LORD: I said, Thou art my God. 15 My times are in thy hand: deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me. 16 Make thy face to shine upon thy servant: save me for thy mercies’ sake. Hope begins to arise at the point of his realization that even these “times” of trial were in the personal care of God!
And what of the Savior himself in the very depth of the most severe sufferings ever displayed on the human stage? Listen to his language as he speaks to the Father concerning the arrival of that severest affliction for which he had been identified from the foundation of the world. (See 1 Peter 1:19,20; Rev 13:8). For the eternal Son ordained nothing for us in which he will not enter himself! Hebrews 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Here are his prayerful words to the Father: John 17:1 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
Notice the descriptive word he uses to identify his present situation, showing that he is confident it has expectedly come to pass with his full knowledge of it being eternally ordained. He speaks of “glorifying” the Son, not of “crucifying” the Son! You do understand that he is about to be forsaken of the Father? For the first and only time in their eternal oneness, they are about to be separated by sin! And yet, knowing of this time being in his Father’s hands, he speaks of the glory of God, and not of the approaching horribly severe suffering of the Son!
This is one reason that many of those who practice orthodox religion are weak and without spiritual strength. This is why many have no ability to finish their course. This is why many “churches” have no semblance of spiritual worship! They deny predestination and sovereignty, thereby separating the purpose of God’s glory from their afflictions. And just what is the very reason that the believer does not fear, although he’s walking through the valley of the shadow of death? It is only because he is aware that thou art with me!
And if you wish to understand the events that the Son knew were also ordained as the result of his afflicting cross work, thus further glorifying God and bringing the Holy Spirit to bear upon the scene, listen to these verses: John 12:23 And Jesus answered them, saying, The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. 24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. 25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. 26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour. 27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour. 28 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again. John 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out. 32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. 33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.
Again he speaks of the hour of his death as the hour of his being glorified! And we notice that he speaks from the view point as being “the seed” of both Abraham and David.
Romans 4:13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. 16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
And of David we read: 2 Samuel 7:12 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.
Then the Apostle Paul sums it all up to identify this “seed” in Galatians 3:16. Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
And even on Pentecost, in the first public christian message, the Apostle Peter clearly states that David, being a prophet, never for a second imagined that God meant that anyone but the Messiah would come from his loins to reign eternally on his throne! Acts 2:29 Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. 30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; 31 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.
Therefore in our John 12 passage, quoted above, our Lord was definitely stating that he was that grain of wheat – the “seed” – which should fall into the ground and die, in order to bring forth the entire ‘crop’ of the church! Rom. 4:24 … if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; 25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.
But how does the believer, living amidst this present world’s distractions, continuously avail himself of the benefit of this doctrine that everything that is happening to him is in Christ? It takes work! Luke 13:24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. It takes a dedication to benefit one’s soul by availing the heart and mind to the provisions of grace! And we have been given specific assignments to accomplish this. Ecclesiastes 7:14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider (“perceive, discern”): God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him. Isaiah 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
And there are not just these positive exercises which we must pursue. But there is also some negative things which we must avoid. For the spirit of the world is a constant distraction to the things of the spiritually minded! For if it can get your mind off the importance of these spiritual exercises, even just in delaying them, it can change the fact of their importance to your soul!
That is what the magicians and astrologers attempted to do to King Nebuchadnezzar when he couldn’t remember his dream, but still required them to tell him what it was and its interpretation. Daniel 2:8 The king answered and said, I know of certainty that ye would gain the time, because ye see the thing is gone from me. 9 But if ye will not make known unto me the dream, there is but one decree for you: for ye have prepared lying and corrupt words to speak before me, till the time be changed: therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that ye can shew me the interpretation thereof.
The believer should be as wise to the world as this king was to his advisors! He knew that they wanted to distract and delay him from this matter until the time be changed. And then they could either forget it all together, or just make up anything as an interpretation of a dream long forgotten. And that is what the forces of darkness have always exacted upon believers in order to deny them of their source of power against them. Daniel 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
We must get back to the firm assurance that only the experiential knowledge that everything generates from Christ, and that our times are in his hands, in order to maintain our spiritual peace! 1Thessalonians 5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
Satan is the great counterfeiter! For as God created man in his image, Satan is busy recreating men by the image of the beast! Not that he is fashioning them into some physical likeness. But that he is immediately blinding their minds as they believe not the gospel. 2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For it is only the spiritual weapons of the grace of the gospel which can overcome imaginations contrary to the knowledge of God! 2 Corinthians 10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
And these who walk in the vanity of their minds, are then also Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. (Ephesians 4:18,19). Once these reject the gospel, or seek only for enough religion to adopt a degree of morality instead of receiving Christ’s imputed righteousness, it is impossible to renew them to repentance again! Hebrews 6:4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, 6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
2 Peter 2:20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.
Isaiah 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
Pastor Gene Breed, December 6, 2013