Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
How real was Jesus as one of us? What does His name "Immanuel," "God with us," mean (Matt. 1:23)? The biblical answer is that He was both "Son of man" and "Son of God." As the former He was weak as we are and had to perform all of His miracles through faith in His Father. He had laid aside the prerogatives of His divinity while He retained His divinity. His perfect righteousness was not innate in the human flesh, which He "took" or "assumed," but it was by a perfect faith in His Father. That's why the Bible speaks of "the faith of Jesus" (for example, see Gal. 2:20, KJV).
If His righteousness was by faith, how did He manage day-by-day, practical living? Did He really need to pray? Yes! Absolutely! When He was born, did His mind already embrace all the knowledge that is in the Old Testament so that He didn't need to learn to read it? No; He learned to read and He studied the Bible. He said, "Your word I have hidden in My heart, that I might not sin against You" (Psalm 119:11). Through prayer and absorbing the truths of the Bible from the Bible, He became "the Word made flesh" (John 1:14). In this way He is our "Example" as well as our Savior.
Did He need to sleep? The Bible several times says yes; He was human. Was He a busy Person? Yes. We read of Him working until late at night, then "in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed" (Mark 1:29-35). We will probably all admit that if we could duplicate that regimen, we'd have a more healthy "Christian experience."
But unless you are totally "retired," how can you do it and still function physically at your job, or at school, or as a busy parent, or pastor?
There are two kinds of "Christian experience"--New Covenant and Old Covenant. The latter is the "under law" regimen motivated by "sanctified" egocentric concern; the former is the most precious gift of a "hunger and thirst for righteousness [by faith, the only kind there is!]" (Matt. 5:6). If you have received that "hunger and thirst" you will "eat" the Bread of life! Nothing can stop you having that living "breakfast," no matter what hour of the day it may be. "Hunger" will drive you.
And how do we get that "hunger and thirst"? From understanding, grasping, and comprehending, how good is the New Covenant Good News, "the truth of the gospel" (Gal. 2:5). Review the New Covenant promises in Genesis 12:2, 3. You're a "child" of Abraham by faith; now choose to believe those promises as Jesus did.
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: November 4, 2003.
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