,“Behold the Man” – Some thoughts for consideration.
A human being is a creature of time and space, a being within the created order.
It is written in Genesis that of all the creatures in creation, humans were the only ones made in the image of God.
What is this image of God that humans are fashioned to express?
In Colossians 1:15-20, Paul is explicit that Christ Jesus, the man, is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. Jesus himself had emphatically claimed, “He who has seen me has seen the Father” and “I and the Father are one”.
Christ Jesus is Incarnate Son of God. However, in Revelation13:8, the reference to the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, suggests to me that Eternal Son of God, the Word Who was God, by, through and for whom creation came into being, in Triune Counsel, before creation was also this Lamb.
As such, would it be proper to say that this 'slain Lamb of God' is the initial image of the invisible God, conceived in eternity, in Triune Counsel and Being, purposed to be actualised in creation, to be born out of a woman, in the fullness of time,in the Person of the Incarnate Son, the man Christ Jesus?
To me this 'slain Lamb of God' imagery may be considered to be the genesis blueprint, plan, design for creation, to be realised and perfected in creation, in and through the Word becoming flesh, the man Christ Jesus.
Paul wrote: “For the creation eagerly awaits the revelation of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility—not willingly but because of the One who subjected it in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from bondage to decay into the glorious freedom of the children of God.”
For this, the Eternal Son of God, Lamb of God even in eternity, became flesh, a human (Lamb of God in time, space, and human history) that creation, including mankind may be set free from bondage to decay into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
For this, the Word came and became, to free creation and us, for as it is recorded, as Incarnate Son, the man Jesus, he said, “if the Son frees you, you are truly free.”
Not only did Incarnate Son as the Lamb of God take away the sin of the world, as Christ Jesus the man, 1John 2:2 also states: “He is the atonement for our sins, and not only for our sins but also for the whole world.”
I glimpse a part of the unfolding mystery of Triune God’s nature and character through the image of the 'slain Lamb of God' penned beautifully by Paul;
1. As to what happened in eternity:
“Who, though existing in the form of God, did not consider being equal to God a thing to be grasped. But He emptied Himself—taking on the form of a slave, and
2. As to when eternity and spacetime were joined and intersected as one:
“becoming the likeness of men.”
3. As to what happened in spacetime, in our human history:
And in fashion having been found as a man, He humbled Himself—becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
No wonder, Paul, after penning the above, continued:
“Therefore God also highly exalted him, and gave to him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, those on earth, and those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”- happening only after Lamb of God, as Jesus the man, was perfected at his resurrection.
Also, Triune God made Him(Eternal Son) Who knew no sin sin (singular - as in a created being, a human being, a man) for us, that we, might become the righteousness of God.
Query: Where was humanity made right with God, and when (did it) become the righteousness of God?
For me, the answer may be found in the gospel records associated with and of the baptism of Jesus, at the Jordan.
This event is also the only explicit record of the Theophany of God, Father, Son and Spirit being together in created space and time, in our human history.
“Jesus, when he was baptized, went up directly from the water: and behold, the heavens were opened to him. He saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming on him. Behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
“When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”
“Immediately coming up out of the water, he (John) saw the heavens torn open, and the Spirit like a dove descending on Him (Jesus)” and a voice came from the heavens: “You are My beloved Son; in You I am well pleased.”
This Triune Theophany happened, but only after Jesus was baptised into the baptism of repentance to “fulfill ALL righteousness.” For Jesus said concerning his baptism, "“Let it happen now, for in this way it is fitting for US to fulfill all righteousness.”
Note that Jesus used the word “us” instead of only“me”. For this baptism is not only for himself but also for us, for him to bring towards fruition of setting creation free from bondage into the glorious freedom of the children of God, through the 'fulfilling of all righteousness'.
It was only after Jesus, Lamb of God becoming one of us, for himself, for us, with us, in joint identification as us, acknowledged and repented for our sinsand the world's sin, to God, I submit, was all righteousness then fulfilled. Hence, Spirit's delight in and identification with Jesus by descending upon him as a dove, and Father's voice resounding throughout the heavens “You are My beloved Son; in You I am well pleased.”
For righteousness is all about being in a right relationship one with another. All this happened around the spacetime when and where Jesus was baptised. All righteousness or rightness was fulfilled between Triune God, the whole of creation, and humanity, there and then.
Is it any wonder that the Triune Theophany happened immediately after all this rightness was finally birthed into being, in, through and with the person of the man Christ Jesus, Lamb of God? Note again, this happened way before Jesus’ crucifixion and death at the cross at Calvary.
As such, I continue to meditate on the import and significance of this repentance by Jesus the man, Lamb of God, and its practical relevance to my living, in relationship to God, creation and fellow humans, in Christ.
In ending, I would like to share the words of the song “Behold the Man” which echoes the revelation of the Prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 53:1-12 and which holds a special place in my heart.
“Behold the Man, wounded and bruised, crown with thorns.
He was despised and rejected.
He was despised and rejected.
Behold the Man, man of sorrows, acquainted with grief.
We hid our faces from him.
We hid our faces from him.
We did not know that it was for our sins He died, that for us the Son of God was crucified;
That in love He bore our sorrow and pain and in love He willingly suffered.
Behold the man, suffering in silence, bearing our shame.
We hid our faces from him.
We hid our faces from him.
We did not know that this was God the Father’s plan, for God to bring redemption down to man.
That in love He gave His only Son, so that we might be forgiven.
Behold the Man, Risen in glory, Coming to reign;
By the Father exalted, Crowned with glory and honour.
Behold the Man, King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
Through All Creation, Jesus Christ is Lord,
He is Lord, He is Lord. HE IS LORD.”
Behold The Man
 John 19:5 a proclamation made by Pilate, the fifth governor of the Roman province of Judaea, serving under Emperor Tiberius from 26/27 to 36/37 AD, of Jesus of Nazereth.
 15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created in the heavens and on the earth, visible things and invisible things, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things are held together. 18 He is the head of the body, the assembly, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things he might have the pre-eminence. 19 For all the fullness was pleased to dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile all things to himself by him, whether things on the earth or things in the heavens, having made peace through the blood of his cross. WEB
 See also John 14:10-11, John 17:5,21,24
 John 1:14
 Galations 4:4
 Galatians 4:4” when the fulness of the time was come, God sent his Son, made of a woman(becoming out of - γενόμενον ἐκ γυναικός}, made under the law – (becoming under (ὑπὸ-hypo) the law oγενόμενον ὑπὸ νόμον). Note in both cases γενόμενον - Verb - Second Aorist Middle Deponent Participle - Accusative Singular Masculine- the becoming happening at a particular point in time.
 Romans 8:19-21 RSV
 ἐλευθερώσῃ Verb - Aorist Active Subjunctive - 3rd Person Singular ἐλευθερόω
eleutheroō Strong’s G1659 – makes free
 ὄντως ontōs Strong’s G3689 – Truly, in reality, in point of fact as opposed to what is pretended, fictitious , false – that which is truly etc… that which is indeed
 John 8:36 – my translation of the Greek
 1John 2:2 TLV see also Leviticus 16:30, 17:11 and Isaiah 53:11-12
 γενόμενος Verb - Second Aorist Middle Deponent Participle - Nominative Singular Masculine from γίνομαι – ginomai Strong’s G1096 same root word as “was made –became” in John 1:14
 Philippians 2:6-7 TLV
 σχήματι – schemati from root σχῆμα schema Strong’s G4976 - the habitus, as comprising everything in a person which strikes the senses, the figure, bearing, discourse, actions, manner of life. Synonym: see μορφή at the end, and Schmidt, chapter 182, 5. μορφή was the word translated as form in Philippians 2:6 preceding.
 YLT Philippians 2:8
 TLV philippians 2:8
 Philippians 21:9-11 WEB
 See post on Perfecting the Man Christ Jesus –A Glimpse into the Mystery of Suffering
 In 2 Corinthians 5:21 the word ἐποίησεν -Verb - Aorist Active Indicative - 3rd Person Singular from ποιέω poieō Strong’s 4160 – make
 See comments on word ‘sin’ in John 1:29 in previous post
 or “become” γινώμεθα - Verb - Aorist Active Indicative - 3rd Person Singular from γίνομαι
ginomai – same root word as that found in the words “was made – became”in John 1:14
 or rightness of God
 Matthew 3:16-17 WEB
 Luke 3:21-22 NIV
 Mark 1:10 AMP
 Mark 1:11 NASB
 Matthew 3:15 TLV Note also the Greek word πληρῶσαι translated as “to fulfil” Verb - Aorist Active Infinitive from πληρόω plēroō Strong’s G4137 – to make full, to fulfil – meaning of aorist - characterized by its emphasis on punctiliar action; that is, the concept of the verb is considered without regard for past, present, or future time. There is no direct or clear English equivalent for this tense, though it is generally rendered as a simple past tense in most translations. The events described by the aorist tense are classified into a number of categories by grammarians. The most common of these include a view of the action as having begun from a certain point ("inceptive aorist"), or having ended at a certain point ("cumulative aorist"), or merely existing at a certain point ("punctiliar aorist").
 Missing the mark
 Missing the mark See 1John 2:2
 Taken from the cantata "If My People" by Jimmy Owens. 1975? Lyrics are taken from Isaiah 53 - Christ the Suffering Servant
Thanks for sharing!
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