Today’s message summary of March 31, 2019 from Pastor Gus Brown:
Why did Jesus have to take on flesh? Why would He put on a human body? The angels were more powerful and capable than man, and yet He took this on for a reason and a purpose.
Do you remember the phrase, “talk is cheap”? It really can be. How much are you willing to put your body on the line? Can you show up personally and demonstrate what you really want? Do you know what it is to “step up to the plate”?
Jesus personally showed us what it meant to be involved in the most historic fight ever. He did battle with Satan for all of us and for all of eternity…and He won.
Charles Swindoll once said, “Serving doesn’t come naturally.” It doesn’t. Because we have a selfish nature, we have to learn how to serve.
People must develop an art for service.
People have to be willing to deny themselves in order to serve others.
(In the church, the gift of helps may be neglected by members of the body because helping others may not be noticed as much as other more public areas of service.)
People must ask, “Lord, show me, teach me and help me to serve and to give of myself.”
When you do this, you will see the example of Jesus Christ in His service to others.
Adopt the same attitude as that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be exploited. Instead he emptied himself by assuming the form of a servant, taking on the likeness of humanity. And when he had come as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death–even to death on a cross.
He took on this body to show mankind what it was to be a servant of God.
“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
God humbled Himself to serve those who He had Himself created. What an important lesson for us!
Jesus gave His life for us.
Our flesh wants to receive things or favors. Everyone wants to be loved. Can you, in turn, love others? True love for others overlooks faults.
In service, we give to one another and do not expect anything in return.
The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. We observed his glory, the glory as the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
God’s Word, in the form of Jesus, took on this body for all of us to see His living presence and His example. In a bodily form, John could touch, see and hear Jesus.
1 John 1:1-4
What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have observed and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life–that was revealed, and we have seen it and we testify and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us–what we have seen and heard we also declare to you, so that you may also have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.
The Word became flesh. This is the incarnation. It affirms that God took on flesh. Here, we deal with the issue of God taking on a human body. There is still a great debate about this today.
John makes a distinct change here in John 1:14. In verse 14, it is the last time that he mentions the use of “Word,” and he begins to refer to the name Jesus in John 1:17.
There is now a transition that has taken place where the Word has become flesh (in human form) and His name is Jesus Christ.
Many will say that Jesus the man became God or the Son of God in the Fourth Century, by the Nicene Council (The Nicene Creed). The Nicene Council was the first where the Eastern and Western churches had come together to an agreement as to who Jesus Christ was. All that was done was by referring to what Scripture had said, and the conclusion was that God was indeed human and also was God (John 8:58).
In the Fourth Century was when this debate took place, but it is still being debated today.
Therefore, as he was coming into the world, he said: You did not desire sacrifice and offering, but you prepared a body for me. You did not delight in whole burnt offerings and sin offerings. Then I said, “See– it is written about me in the scroll– I have come to do your will, O God.”
The body you have prepared for me…why? For sacrifice and offering.
You did not delight in sacrifice and offering; you open my ears to listen. You do not ask for a whole burnt offering or a sin offering.
Think of Adam here. There was no sacrifice required of him other than obedience. This is all that Adam was required to do. When Adam disobeyed, it was God that offered the sacrifice for Adam’s sin, which was an animal in order to provide covering (clothing) for Adam and Eve.
The wages of sin is death, and Jesus was the one who paid for this sin with the shedding of blood. By Jesus putting on this body and giving of Himself, He bled for us in order that we would be freed of sin. Jesus, as sinless and unblemished, could only give of Himself for our sins.
Man did not come up with sacrifices…God did.
The greatest argument today is that Jesus Christ is not God. People want to refer to Him as everything else except God. In order for sin to be paid for, He had to be perfect (without blemish).
Hebrews 9:11-14, 21
But the Messiah has appeared, high priest of the good things that have come. In the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands (that is, not of this creation), He entered the most holy place once for all, not by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a young cow, sprinkling those who are defiled, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of the Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse our consciences from dead works to serve the living God?
In the same way, he sprinkled the tabernacle and all the articles of worship with blood.
For this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.
In the flesh, Jesus demonstrates the love of God.
But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
He did not even spare His own Son
but offered Him up for us all;
how will He not also with Him grant us everything?
1 Peter 2:24
He Himself bore our sins
in His body on the tree,
so that, having died to sins,
we might live for righteousness;
you have been healed by His wounds.
He died for us. It wasn’t just talk.
In the flesh, He was able to be an example for us.
1 Peter 2:21
For you were called to this,
because Christ also suffered for you,
leaving you an example,
so that you should follow in His steps.
Jesus gave us the example for us as to how to live for others.
For I have given you an example that you also should do just as I have done for you.
But we do see Jesus—made lower than the angels for a short time so that by God’s grace He might taste death for everyone—crowned with glory and honor because of His suffering in death.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
2 Corinthians 5:21
He made the One who did not know sin to be sin[a] for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
God has personally done what was necessary to deal with our sin–all the way back from Adam and to the present and future.
Praise the Lord!