"Father, glorify Your name " Then a voice came out of heaven: "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again."John 12:28(NASB)
The final few days before Christ's crucifixion were packed with signs and happenings that overflow with meaning. Jesus had eaten a meal in Bethany at the home of Simon the Leper, where Martha was busily serving food. In an outpouring of love, her sister Mary came to Jesus and breaking her costly alabaster oil of spikenard, she anointed His feet and wiped them dry with her hair.
While Judas and the other disciples criticised this young woman for this foolish extravagance, Jesus defended her act of love and explained that she had anointed His body for the day of His burial. And Jesus assured them that wherever the gospel is preached, Mary's act of consecration will be told as a memorial to her. Only days before Mary's sacrificial service, her beloved brother, Lazarus, had been raised from the dead when Jesus made the astonishing proclamation, "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live."
The day after this memorable meal in Bethany and Mary's beautiful act of consecration, Jesus made His triumphal entrance into Jerusalem, riding on a donkey - in fulfilment of Scripture. As the crowd waved palm branches, they joyfully hailed Jesus as their Messiah-King... and quoting from Psalm 118 they shouted excitedly, "Hosannah! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord."
This should have been the moment when Jesus was acknowledged as the Holy One of Israel and crowned as their King, but He knew what was in their hearts. He knew their ecstatic adoration would quickly mutate into energetic aggression. He knew that this same crowd would soon be screaming, "Crucify Him! Crucify Him! We have no king but Ceasar! We will not have this man to reign over us."
It was in the midst of all the hustle, bustle, to-ing and fro-ing on His final week, that some Greeks were among those who went up to Jerusalem to worship at the festival, but they came... seeking JESUS. How astonishing that like the Wise Men who greeted Christ at his birth, it was to be Gentiles who recognised Him at His death.
Jesus had come to His own people to save them from their sin. He had come to the lost sheep of the house of Israel first, in order to fulfil all Scriptures. He came to His own but His own received Him not... but He also came as Saviour of the whole world. God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten so that as many as received Him - Jew and Gentile - were given the power to become children of God. And Gentiles came seeking Jesus when His hour was come to give His life to redeem mankind.
From His cradle in Bethlehem to the Cross at Calvary, Jesus is identified as Saviour of ALL - our Kinsman-Redeemer Who gave His life as the ransom for many. Before these Greeks approached Him, the Lord Jesus said, on many occasions, "Mine hour has not yet come." But directly they came seeking Jesus, He answered them, saying, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal. If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honour him."
It seems that with the arrival of these Greeks, Jesus knew that His hour had arrived when He would be made the Sacrifice for the sin of the whole world. We cannot begin to imagine the thoughts that flooded His holy mind. We will never comprehend what it cost the God of the Son to be born as Son of Man and become the Sacrifice for sin.
We know that His soul had become deeply troubled as He contemplated the Cross. We know He asked Himself: "What shall I say? Shall I say 'Father, save Me from this hour?'" Nevertheless, Jesus reasoned with Himself... knowing that it was for this purpose... the salvation of mankind, that He had come to this hour - the hour when He would take upon Himself the sin of the world. And so He cried out, "Father, glorify Your name."
It was the Father's will that Jesus came to earth to give His life as the ransom price for the sin of the world. It was to glorify the Father's name that Jesus came to earth as the Lamb of God to take away the sin of the world. It was to glorify His Father in heaven that the Lord Jesus denied Himself as He set His face as a flint to the Cross - and so He cried out, "Father, glorify Your name."
Jesus had glorified His Father throughout His life by the way that He lived and He was to glorify His Father by the way that He died. And at Christ's crucial hour of commitment, the Lord Jesus received the most glorious encouragement from His heavenly Father, for His prayer was answered by a voice from heaven, "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again."
For the third time during His earthly ministry, God the Father witnessed audibly to the veracity of Christ's Person and Work. For the third time, Divine testimony was given to authenticate Christ's Messianic ministry. "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." God was glorified through Christ's life and He was soon to be further glorified by His death, resurrection, and ascension into heaven. The Father will again be glorified when Christ comes to claim the Church for His Bride and will receive glory when Jesus returns to rule and reign in righteousness.
Praise His Holy Name!
Heavenly Father, how I praise and glorify Your holy name for the life and witness of the lovely Lord Jesus Who came to earth to fulfil Your redemptive purpose and plan for the fallen race of mankind. Father, if it were not for His miraculous birth, sinless life, sacrificial death, and glorious Resurrection, I would still be dead in my trespasses and sin and at enmity with You. Thank You that through Your goodness and grace, You purposed and planned to redeem mankind through faith in His finished work. Thank You for saving me. Thank You for sending Jesus to be the sacrifice for my sin. Thank You that You loved me before I knew You and have brought me into Your heavenly family. May I live and work to Your praise and glory, from this day forward and even forevermore. This I ask in Jesus' name, AMEN.
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