Part 5 - "The Exemplar and the Empowerer"
The prototypical human being, namely, the Lord Jesus Christ, lived His earthly lifetime by faith. "The Son can do nothing of Himself… I live by the Father" (John 5:19; 6:57). God calls born again believers to "walk, even as He (Christ) walked" (I John 2:6). Thus, we live our lives "looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith," and rejoicing that He dwells within us to produce a life of trust as both the Exemplar and the Empowerer. "We live… through Him" (Hebrews 12:2; I John 4:9).
We do well to grow in our understanding of the Savior's experience as a man dependent on God. He did not relinquish His divinity by becoming human. The Lord Jesus is forever the God who become man, and the man who remains God. However, in order to perfectly identify with us, He did not live His earthly lifetime by His inherent capability as God the Son. He rather walked according to the title by which He so often described Himself: "the son of man." Again, He lived by faith, even as both Old Testament and New declare, "The just shall live by faith" (Habbakuk 2:4; Romans 1:17). Our blessed Savior knows what it is like to face the challenge of trusting God in a fallen world, the current of which ever flows against the life of faith. In fact, He knows the difficulty far better than do we ourselves. Only the Lord Jesus was "in all points tempted like as we are" (Hebrews 4:15). All other human beings face particular challenges of devilish, worldly, and fleshly enticement to distrust and disobey God, but are exempted from others. Christ alone faced temptation on every front, again, "in all points." He triumphed over all, and thus serves as the perfect Exemplar of what it means to walk by faith. "In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world" (John 16:33).
Living by faith requires the Person, presence, and power of God to inspire the confidence that leads to choices of trust and submission to Him. Our Heavenly Father blesses His trusting children with such grace. "God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba Father" (Galatians 4:6). Thus, we "consider Him... lest ye be wearied and faith in your minds" (Hebrews 12:3). Whenever we find the path of faith difficult to navigate, we open the eyes of our heart to see the glimmering Footprints of One - the only One - who lived a perfect human lifetime trusting His Father. The Lord Jesus now dwells within us during our earthly lifetime to motivate and empower the same confidence in God and His Word. Why faith? Because our Savior lived by faith as the Exemplar, and now lives in us as the Empowerer to motivate the trust that results in triumph.
"Whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world. And this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith."
(I John 5:4)
"I will dwell in them and walk in them… Walk by faith."
(II Corinthians 6:16; 5:7)
Weekly Memory Verse
"In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world."