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to trace His omniscience and omnipotence   He was ever disobedient and needed
        in His dealings with fallen humanity. John   correction, but only that, before He came
        wrote that “the Word was made flesh, and   into the world, He never had to suffer.
        dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory,   Nonetheless, experientially, He was will-
        the glory as of the only begotten of the   ing to do so, so that those who were lost
        Father,) full of grace and truth” (Joh 1:14).   and dead in their sins could be found and
          The Savior was born in humble cir-  given eternal life (Luk 19:10). His motiva-
        cumstances in Bethlehem – no luxury   tion was love.
        maternity suite for Mary – and grew up   Early in His public ministry, His en-
        in despised Nazareth. Even from boy-  emies began plotting to destroy Him (Mar
        hood, He was dedicated to carrying out   3:6). He was aware of their murderous
        His Father’s will: “I must be about my   intentions and of those who would be
        Father’s business” (Luk 2:49). Later He   instrumental in carrying them out. And
        would declare, “The Father hath not left   yet, we are sure that the feet of Judas, His
        me alone; for I do always those things that   known betrayer, were washed as tenderly
        please him” (Joh 8:29).               as those of the other disciples. When the
          He learned the manual trade of carpen-  time drew near, He spoke of His “hour”
        try from Joseph, and for the first 30 years   having come. In the Garden of Geth-
        He lived in relative obscurity. Nonethe-  semane, He prayed, “Not my will, but
        less, the divine commentary on those “hid-  thine, be done” (Luk 22:42). Once again,
        den” years was given at His baptism in   He willingly accepted that this was the
        the River Jordan, when the heavens were   only way. His prayer did not represent
        opened and the Father declared, “Thou   a conflict of wills. He did not resist ar-
        art my beloved Son, in whom I am well   rest. He did not try to escape. He did not
        pleased” (Mar 1:11). He showed Himself   loudly protest. He was led “as a lamb to
        to be the perfect Servant of Jehovah, as Isa-  the slaughter, and as a sheep before her
        iah had prophesied (Isa 42:1), and the One   shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his
        whom Mark portrayed as being always   mouth” (Isa 53:7).
        busy. He was also anointed, filled and led   He did not flinch from the shameful
        by the Spirit of God – another important   and painful treatment He endured. The
        aspect of His voluntary submission (Luk   prophet foretold this: “I gave my back
        4:1,14,18).                           to the smiters … I hid not my face from
                                              shame and spitting” (Isa 50:6). It is an in-
        The Suffering Son                     stinctive human reaction to shield oneself
          Mark’s Gospel is often linked with the   from assault, but He was different. His
        picture of an ox, being ready not only for   wounds were many and varied but there
        service but also for sacrifice. Christ was   is no record of any “defense wounds.”
        aware of the pathway of suffering that   Deeper still He went as God forsook Him
        lay ahead, culminating in His rejection   when our sins and judgement were laid
        and crucifixion (Luk 12:50). In this too He   upon Him. The nadir of His suffering was
        would voluntarily submit to the Father’s   the acme of His love. That blessed One
        will. The Scripture says, “Yet learned he   willingly bore the yoke of service and the
        obedience by the things which he suf-  cross of suffering for you and me. What
        fered” (Heb 5:8). This does not mean that   a Savior!

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