Chapter # 9 Paragraph # 4 Study # 5
November 8, 2009
22 Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.
23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
24 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
25 For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?
26 For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father's, and of the holy angels.
27 But I tell you of a truth, there be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God.
1901 ASV Translation:
22 saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up.
23 And he said unto all, If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
24 For whosoever would save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
25 For what is a man profited, if he gain the whole world, and lose or forfeit his own self?
26 For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in his own glory, and the glory of the Father, and of the holy angels.
27 But I tell you of a truth, There are some of them that stand here, who shall in no wise taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God.
- I. Jesus' Rationale For Insisting that the Disciples "Tell No One" He is the Christ.
- A. It has everything to do with the issue of people "believing unto eternal life".
- 1. There is no "point" to the focus upon Jesus' identity (who are the crowds saying I am? what do you say?) except one: the impact that His identity has upon people.
- 2. Jesus did not come into this realm for His, or anyone else's entertainment: He had a critical and eternal impact to make.
- 3. The issue that the Bible raises to the highest level of methodological necessity is one: faith.
- B. It has everything to do with the issue of whether people will, or even can, "believe" in Him.
- 1. What is the "point" of demanding that a lid be put upon the declaration of the truest "truth" in the universe if not that some kind of terrible damage will occur if it is bandied about?
- 2. It is impossible to deny that Jesus is moving with extraordinary care because of the fragility of the human side of the issue: faith. Those on the "free will" side of the issue of "faith" have no clue when it comes to understanding the issues that stand in the way of this thing called "faith" by God. Those on the "sovereignty of God" side of the issue seem to lack the same kind of understanding in relation to an issue that is just a tad different: there is no need to caution against proclamation if "those who are going to believe are going to believe". The entire issue of particular methodology is involved (hours made of seconds; years made of days, made of hours, made of seconds -- and, in these days, nanoseconds -- and the details of cause/effect activities done within those nanoseconds). God's presentation of His Plan is one of critical links and decisive actions where the only things "guaranteed" are those things which have adequate preliminary actions and where the breakdowns occur when rebellion blocks those preliminary activities. Thus, God makes "promises" that require that He be involved at every step and He takes great care to make sure that each step required is taken.
- a. On the one hand, it has to do with what is about to happen to Him.
- 1) All through the history of humanity there is one cord that appears to be dominant: the intent to mold "truth" to the preferred lifestyle so as to "milk" the "truth" for its benefits without being subject to the constraints that "truth" places upon the life. This is what I call "changing the label on the jar without changing the contents".
- 2) What is about to happen to Jesus simply will not permit such an intent. What is about to happen to Jesus is going to be a frontal assault upon the dominant cord and Jesus is intense about how that assault is to be handled. This means that He did not conceive of "faith" as a matter of "human ability" or "human presumption".
- 3) What is about to happen has two distinct "parts".
- a) One "part" is how those are going to treat Him whose commitment to the "cord" is both settled and determined.
- i. This "part" is not terribly hard for human beings to "believe".
- ii. This "part" is, however, simply not acceptable to those who are looking for "The Christ of the God" because the settled/determined commitment to the "cord" is just about as deep in the general populace as it is in the leaders. In their minds, the "Christ" is supposed to use His power to make the lifestyle of "benefits without difficulties" real.
- iii. This "part" is made the most potent adversary to "faith" by reason of the details: the appearance is that everyone who is anyone is going to come down on the "Jesus is not the Christ" side of the argument. This makes "faith" humanly impossible because it demands of the "believer" that he embrace something that puts him on the "outs" with everyone who is supposed to know what they are doing.
- b) The other "part" is what is going to happen once they have done their worst.
- i. The declaration that Jesus would be raised on the third day was simply dismissed as though He never uttered the words, for one reason: it was too unbelievable. Those whose "free will" was supposed to embrace this unbelievable claim found that the "will" could not overcome the barriers and those who were "elect" did not believe it either ... even after it actually occurred.
- ii. The reality of this unbelievable factor, that not even "election" overcame, was the reason Jesus forbade the proclamation of His identity until after history made election workable.
- b. On the other hand, it has to do with what must be true about those who "come after Him".