Anglican Morning Devotion, 31 March 2022 Anno Domini
a ministry of the Anglican Orthodox Communion Worldwide
“Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. 16And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:13-17; all scripture quoted is from the King James Version)
It is the tradition of the Hebrews to have the first-born son inherit the father’s possessions at death of the father. The New Testament gives testimony to the son’s inheritance of all things belonging to the Father as a result of sacrifice and not the death of the Father. Rather, it occurs owing to the death of the Son. “And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth. Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood. For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people, Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you. Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry. And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.” (Hebrews 9:15-22)
The inheritance of the Son does not annul the Sovereignty of the Father, but rather demonstrates the price the Father has suffered for our salvation in the sacrifice of His Son for which the old blood sacrifices of animals of the Old Testament were mere patterns of that to come in Christ. Let us not forget that the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are One in purpose and Mind, yet three separate Persons. “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.” (1 John 5:7-8) Of course, the Word to which John refers is the Lord Jesus Christ for He is the Word Incarnate.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men.” (John 1:1-4) “In the beginning” was before the creation of the time/matter/energy scale. In the beginning there was no earth, sun, or heavenly bodies for it was from the eternity past that God (and the Word) began His Creation.
In the remote eternity past, it was decided by the Council of Heaven that a Redeemer must be provided for the sins of fallen man in Adam. This Redeemer would be the most precious possession of the Father – His only Begotten Son – begotten, not made as are the other sons of God through adoption. “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” (Galatians 4:4-7) The Living Will of the Father is Christ Jesus in whom we share as heirs of the Promise made to Father Abraham – not by blood of race, but by Spirit of Truth. Our blood relationship with our Lord is not that transmitted by man (neither Jew nor Gentile) but the blood of the Son of God who purchased our salvation.
Job foretold His coming perhaps 2,000 years before His birth. (approx. date – the Scriptures are not clear as to timing): “Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book! That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever! For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.” (Job 19:23-27)
The most important question of the ages is posed in this passage from John in the words of our Lord: “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” (John 11:25-26) Do you believe while life remains for it is too late to believe when the shadows fall on this life.