Monday, March 23, 2015

Jesus Prayer On the Banks of the Jordan

Yesterday we discussed Jesus Baptism, today He is bowed in prayer on the banks of the Jordan River after His baptism.

The Savior's glance seems to penetrate heaven as He pours out His soul in prayer.  Well He knows how sin has hardened the hearts of men, and how difficult it will be for them to discern His mission, and accept the gift of salvation.  He pleads with the Father for power to overcome their unbelief, to break the fetters with which Satan has enthralled them, and in their behalf to conquer the destroyer.  He asks for the witness that God accepts humanity in the person of His Son.

Never before have the angels listened to such a prayer.  They are eager to bear to their loved Commander a message of assurance and comfort.  But no; the Father Himself will answer the petition of His Son.  Direct from the throne issue the beams of His glory.  The heavens are opened, and upon the Savior's head descends a dovelike form of purest light,--fit emblem of Him, the meek and lowly One.

Of the vast throng at the Jordan, few except John discerned the heavenly vision.  Yet the solemnity of the divine Presence rested upon the assembly.  The people stood silently gazing upon Christ.  His form was bathed in the light that ever surrounds the throne of God.  His upturned face was glorified as they had never before seen the face of man.  From the open heavens a voice was heard saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

These words of confirmation were given to inspire faith in those who witnessed the scene, and to strengthen the Savior for His mission.  Notwithstanding that the sins of a guilty world were laid upon Christ, notwithstanding the humiliation of taking upon Himself our fallen nature, the voice from heaven declared Him to be the Son of the Eternal.

And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," embraces humanity.  God spoke to Jesus as our representative.  With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless.  "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved."  Ephesians 1:6.  The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven.  By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory.  His love had encircle man, an reached the highest heaven.  The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Savior will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation.  The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased.

"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is."  1John 3:2.  Our Redeemer has opened the way so that the most sinful, the most needy, the most oppressed and despised, may find access to the Father.  All may have a home in the mansions which Jesus has gone to prepare.  "These things saith He that is holy, He that is true, He that hath the key of David, He that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth; . . .behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it."  Revelation 3:7,8.

(I can't add anything to these thoughts except to say that Jesus is still pleading for our souls to the Father and all we have to do is consent for Him to take over our lives and live out His life in us.  How easy is that?  May God bless this reading this morning and cause us to give our lives over to Him.  Grandma Joan.)  These thoughts are from the Desire of Ages p. 112, 113.

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