Has God ever spoken to you through a dream? I had a dream a few nights ago, and while I don’t remember every detail, I do remember the instruction given. “Go and read what came before the High Priestly prayer.”
I’ve never received a message so clear and direct, so I got up and read the verse before Jesus begins to pray, but since it begins with, “These things I have spoken unto you,” I asked, “What things?” and started further back to Chapter 16, verse 1. But it, too, starts with, “These things have I spoken unto you,” so I went back further to the beginning of Chapter 15 and read all the way through to the end of the High Priestly prayer in Chapter 17. What was God trying to tell me? It seemed to be a confirmation of the Spirit’s still small voice reminding me a few days earlier that I cannot bear good and lasting fruit on my own. Only the Spirit can produce the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control in my life. But I sensed there must be more, so I continued to read and study over the next couple of days.
While browsing some posts in a social network, I happened upon a message by D.A. Carson entitled The Supremacy of Christ and Love in a Postmodern World, which centered around Jesus’ High Priestly prayer! Coincidence? I think not. Interestingly as well, the subject of ‘glory’ had come up on another occasion, and it is one of the subjects Carson touched on. I wish I could share his whole message in a nutshell, but I’ll simply share a few highlights that pertain to what I believe God wanted to communicate to me as a reminder and encouragement of His love and work in my life.
I love Him, because He first loved me. (1 John 4:19)
Jesus wants us to be one as He and the Father are one. “That all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in You. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that You have sent Me.” –D.A. Carson paraphrasing parts of verses 20-23
Jesus is not only one with God and is Himself God, but He is also not the Son of God through DNA, despite what some sects may teach. Besides being the only begotten Son of God because He came from the Godhead and added humanity to His deity, He loves the Father and does whatever He sees His Father doing, because He is the Son of God and no man has ever seen the Father except the Son. We become children of God when we accept Jesus’ work on the cross, and we ‘prove’ our sonship by loving Him and doing what we see Him doing, when we do the work He has given us to do, just as Jesus did the work the Father gave Him to do. Compare what Jesus said to the scribes and Pharisees in John 8:38-45.
“You are not what you think you are, but what you think, you are,” a quote by Norman Vincent Peale that parallels Proverbs 23:7a, “For as [a man] thinketh in his heart, so is he…” “In terms of social interaction we’re pretty nice people, reasonably disciplined, don’t blow up too often. But would you really like everybody… to see a transcript of every thought you have thought today?” –D.A. Carson
Jesus wants the full measure of His joy to be in us. He wants us to be with Him forever and to see the glory He had from before the foundation of the world. When Moses asked to see God’s glory, God said, “I will make all my goodness pass before thee…” (Exodus 33:19a)
While I was walking the treadmill at the gym last night, Criminal Minds was playing on the monitor in front of me. Although I am fascinated with human behavior, watching evil being portrayed and knowing it actually exists is very disturbing. Oh! To be where Jesus is, to experience the full measure of His joy, to see His glory and be in the midst of goodness and be one with God who is love! As Juba says in Gladiator, “Not yet,” at least not in its fullness, but we can catch a glimpse of it when we do what we have been created to do. But unless we open our eyes and ears, we may miss seeing and hearing what the Father is doing and miss His invitation when He invites us in. Do you understand that? If we can only grasp what we have available through the Lord Jesus — perfect communion with the Father, perfect reconciliation — we can rest in grace. He has invited us in. We don’t have to knock down the door. We don’t have to beg, plead, clean ourselves up, or offer bribes. Jesus Christ has already provided the perfect offering, and He invites us in.
It’s funny, but I have another post I’ve been contemplating, and as I was trying to decide which to do first, I thought, “Duh! Where do you see God working?” Thank you, Father, for inviting me in.