After Jesus healed the man at the pool of Bethesda, the Jewish leadership were appalled that He referred to God as His Father. It incited a fury in them against Him. But Jesus took the opportunity to teach. Verses 19-20 read,
“So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. 20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel.”
Jesus, the Son of God, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, said that He was completely dependent on the Father to act. If Jesus was that reliant on God, how much more so should we be? Jesus sees the Father not only through history, creation, and scripture but He sees Him through His deep relationship with Him. They are united. Whatever the Father does, the Son does the same.
Believer, you and I have a relationship with the Father through the Son. We are given the chance to know Him deeply as well. We, like the world have history and scripture which give a person a superficial knowledge of God. But more so we have a relationship that allows us to commune with the Father in such a way that day by day we know Him more. We get to see different facets of His personality, we come to understand His love in such a profound and meaningful way. He becomes our Father too.
But we also have the Holy Spirit, God’s own Spirit within us. He continually teaches us and guides us. He also makes the way open for us to know God more deeply. He reveals God to us. We read the scripture with a greater understanding. We hear His voice. We not only see evidence of Him in creation but we recognize Him throughout His creation. The Spirit works in us persistently to make us into the image of Christ.
We have Jesus. We have His example of who we could be as we are made more and more into His image. We have Him within us, united with us. He abides in us as we abide in Him and He abides in the Father. As we depend fully on God, the Father, Son, and Spirit we are able to reflect Him and express Him to the world who does not know Him the same way we are given ability to know Him.
The Father was revealed in Jesus through His actions. And Jesus is revealed in us through our actions. Jesus told the people He was going to do greater things than heal people in order to demonstrate the Father to them. He referred not only to the many miracles He did, but also to His ultimate deed of taking on the sin of the entire world, dying on the cross, and resurrecting three days later. He was talking about our redemption as His greatest work.
Jesus made it possible for us to enter into a relationship with the Father. And He made it possible for us, in following Him and doing what He did to be a part of the salvation plan. We can do the works Jesus did. You and I can demonstrate the Father’s love for people too so that they will marvel. When they marvel at the beauty of what God can do, they will want to know Him too. You and I cannot save them, but Jesus can. We can be a conduit to Jesus for them.
Jesus came to give life to the world. We were dead before Jesus. We had no hope before Jesus. Now we are not merely alive but we have eternal life. Do you see what an amazing miracle that is? Do you marvel at the immensity of it? Verses 21-24 read,
“For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. 22 The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.
Jesus is the only way to a relationship with the Father. God gave judgment to Jesus. In order to honor God we have to honor Jesus. Without submission to the Son, one can’t submit to the Father. As Jesus relies wholly on the Father, we must rely wholly on Jesus. When we do that, Jesus gives us the miracle of eternal life. Not just living forever, but living on an entirely new plane of existence here and now. We pass from shadow life in the world to full bright life in the Kingdom of God.
Ask yourself if you are truly dependent on God for all your actions. Do you do all that you see Him doing? Is your whole life about expressing Jesus so that you are reflecting and glorifying God to the world? Are you a light as Jesus is the Light? Are people marveling at your actions and conduct as you demonstrate Jesus to them? Is what you are doing leading people to want to know God more deeply? Or is your light so dim it is indistinguishable from the shadows of the world?