TBU: The Bible Unpacked: Comprehensive Edition

I.  God’s Enablement of Jesus Christ

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Chapter 12  Part I

God’s Enablement of Jesus Christ

God enabled Jesus Christ to carry out his mission, empowering and directing him. Consequently what Jesus did and said showed that he had been sent and empowered by God. For without God no one could possibly have the extraordinary authority, power and knowledge that Jesus had.

Jesus Christ’s Authority from God

See also:

God granted Jesus sovereign authority

Matt 11:27a  [Jesus:] All things have been handed over to me by my Father.  NET

John 17:2  For you [God] have given him authority over all humanity so that he might give eternal life to all those you gave him.  ISV

Jesus had the authority to forgive sins

Matt 9:5-8  [Jesus, to teachers of the law:] Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven’ or to say, ‘Stand up and walk’? 6But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” – then he said to the paralytic – “Stand up, take your stretcher, and go home.” 7And he stood up and went home. 8When the crowd saw this, they were afraid and honored God who had given such authority to men.  NET

Jesus’ question in v. 5 makes the point that forgiving sins is, like healing a paralytic, humanly impossible. So although his claim to be able to forgive sins could not be directly verified, by proving he could do the latter (vv. 7-8) he gave his claim credence.

Jesus’ teaching had great authority

Mark 1:21b-27  On the next day of worship, Jesus went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22The people were amazed at his teachings. Unlike their scribes, he taught them with authority. 23At that time there was a man in the synagogue who was controlled by an evil spirit. He shouted, 24“What do you want with us, Jesus from Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are-the Holy One of God!” 25Jesus ordered the spirit, “Keep quiet, and come out of him!” 26The evil spirit threw the man into convulsions and came out of him with a loud shriek. 27Everyone was stunned. They said to each other, “What is this? This is a new teaching that has authority behind it! He gives orders to evil spirits, and they obey him.”  GW

Jesus had the authority to state what was required for eternal life

John 3:16  [Jesus:] For this is the way God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.  NET

Jesus had the authority to state what was required to enter God’s kingdom

Matt 7:21  [Jesus:] Not everyone who keeps saying to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will get into the kingdom of heaven, but only the person who keeps doing the will of my Father in heaven.  ISV

John 3:3  Jesus answered, “I am telling you the truth: no one can see the Kingdom of God without being born again.”  GNT

 Questions for Section A

Jesus Christ’s Power from God

God bestowed the Holy Spirit on Jesus, for his mission

Matt 3:16-17  After Jesus was baptized, just as he was coming up out of the water, the heavens opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming on him. 17And a voice from heaven said, “This is my one dear Son; in him I take great delight.”  NET

Luke 4:18-19, 21  [Jesus:] “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and the regaining of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed, 19to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”21Then he began to tell them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled even as you heard it being read.”  NET

Jesus claimed that the prophecy of one who would be anointed with the Holy Spirit to carry out God’s messianic work (vv. 18-19; cf. Isa 61:1-2) was fulfilled in himself. As such, through the Holy Spirit God empowered Jesus in his mission and Jesus performed many miraculous deeds with God’s power.

The Holy Spirit empowered Jesus in what he said and did

John 3:34  The man [Jesus] whom God has sent speaks God’s message. After all, God gives him the Spirit without limit.  GW

Acts 10:38  God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and he went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, because God was with him.  ISV

Presumably the power spoken of was due to the Holy Spirit, the power being given in conjunction with the Holy Spirit. This verse also appears to correlate Jesus having the Holy Spirit with God’s presence being with him.

Jesus did many miraculous deeds with God’s power

Luke 5:17b  The power of the Lord was present for Jesus to heal the sick.  GNT

John 3:2  One night Nicodemus came to Jesus and said, “Teacher, we know you are a teacher sent from God, because no one can do the miracles you do unless God is with him.”  NCV™

Jesus’ deeds led people to praise God

Matt 15:30-31  Then large crowds came to him bringing with them the lame, blind, crippled, mute, and many others. They laid them at his feet, and he healed them. 31As a result, the crowd was amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled healthy, the lame walking, and the blind seeing, and they praised the God of Israel.  NET

The fact that the people praised God for all the miracles that they saw Jesus perform, suggests that they understood his power to perform the miracles ultimately came from God.

Jesus’ deeds validated his claims about himself and God

John 10:36-38  [Jesus, to unbelieving Jews:] As for me, the Father chose me and sent me into the world. How, then, can you say that I blaspheme because I said that I am the Son of God? 37Do not believe me, then, if I am not doing the things my Father wants me to do. 38But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, you should at least believe my deeds, in order that you may know once and for all that the Father is in me and that I am in the Father.  GNT

In vv. 37-38, Jesus claimed that the miracles validated his claim of being the Christ (v. 36a; cf. vv. 24-25a), God’s Son (v. 36b) – and in conjunction showed that God was in him and he in God (v. 38b).

Jesus’ deeds led many people to believe in him

John 12:9-11  Now a large crowd of Judeans learned that Jesus was there, and so they came not only because of him but also to see Lazarus whom he had raised from the dead. 10So the chief priests planned to kill Lazarus too, 11for on account of him many of the Jewish people from Jerusalem were going away and believing in Jesus.  NET

 Questions for Section B

Jesus Christ’s Knowledge from God

See also:

Jesus Christ’s surpassing knowledge and his related trait of profound wisdom were key aspects of his teaching ministry. As can be seen in some of the verses in this section, these capabilities were also important in other areas of his life and mission.

God taught Jesus

John 8:28  Then Jesus said, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he, and I do nothing on my own initiative, but I speak just what the Father taught me.  NET

John 15:15b  [Jesus, to his disciples:] But I have called you friends, because I have revealed to you everything I heard from my Father.  NET

Jesus taught his disciples everything he learned from God (cf. NIV).

Jesus knew everything

John 16:30  [The disciples, to Jesus:] Now we know that you know everything and do not need anyone to ask you anything. Because of this we believe that you have come from God.  NET

The final statement suggests that Jesus’ knowledge of all things was due to God and/or his relationship with him. Jesus’ complete knowledge would appear to have been due to both: God’s teaching of him (as per the previous subsection); and, debatably, God enabling him to know or perceive all things about people and everything else (capabilities that are seen in the following subsections).

Jesus knew everything about all people . . .

John 2:24-25  But Jesus would not entrust himself to them [people with limited faith], because he knew all people. 25He did not need anyone to testify about man, for he knew what was in man.  NET

John 4:29  [A woman who had talked with Jesus:] “Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! Could he be the Messiah?”  CEV

. . . Jesus even knew people’s thoughts and intentions

Matt 12:25a  Jesus knew what they were thinking, and he said to them: Any kingdom where people fight each other will end up ruined.  CEV

Matt 22:18  But knowing that these leaders were trying to trick him, Jesus said, “You hypocrites! Why are you trying to trap me?  NCV™

Jesus knew about future events

Mark 13:19-26  [Jesus:] For in those days there will be suffering unlike anything that has happened from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, or ever will happen. 20And if the Lord had not cut short those days, no one would be saved. But because of the elect, whom he chose, he has cut them short. 21Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe him. 22For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, the elect. 23Be careful! I have told you everything ahead of time. 24“But in those days, after that suffering, the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light; 25the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. 26Then everyone will see the Son of Man arriving in the clouds with great power and glory.  NET

John 18:4  Then Jesus, because he knew everything that was going to happen to him, came and asked them, “Who are you looking for?”  NET

Jesus was also filled with wisdom . . .

Luke 2:40, 46-47, 52  And the child [Jesus] grew and became strong, filled with wisdom, and the favor of God was upon him. … 46After three days they [Jesus’ parents] found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47And all who heard Jesus were astonished at his understanding and his answers.52And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and with people.  NET

. . . Nobody could match Jesus’ wisdom

Luke 20:22-26  [Men trying to trick Jesus:] Is it right for us to pay the tribute tax to Caesar or not?” 23But Jesus perceived their deceit and said to them, 24“Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?” They said, “Caesar’s.” 25So he said to them, “Then give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” 26Thus they were unable in the presence of the people to trap him with his own words. And stunned by his answer, they fell silent.  NET

Matt 22:46  No one could answer him at all, and from that day on no one dared to ask him another question.  ISV

Note: Jesus knew God

John 7:28b-29  [Jesus, referring to God:] You do not know him, 29but I know him, because I have come from him and he sent me.  NET

 Questions for Section C

Jesus Christ’s Direction from God

God was with Jesus

John 8:29  [Jesus, speaking of God:] And the one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, because I always do those things that please him.  NET

Jesus only did works of God . . .

John 5:19  So Jesus answered them, “I tell you the solemn truth, the Son can do nothing on his own initiative, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise.  NET

. . . and God worked through Jesus

Acts 2:22  [Peter:] Listen to these words, fellow-Israelites! Jesus of Nazareth was a man whose divine authority was clearly proven to you by all the miracles and wonders which God performed through him. You yourselves know this, for it happened here among you.  GNT

Jesus obeyed God

John 14:31a  [Jesus:] However, I want the world to know that I love the Father and that I am doing exactly what the Father has commanded me to do.  GW

Jesus carried out God’s will, doing the work God had given him . . .

John 4:34  Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of the one who sent me and to complete his work.  NET

In speaking of doing God’s will as his “food”, Jesus indicated that it was his prime source of “nourishment” (AMP, NLT). Doing God’s work was in a sense what sustained him in his mission and was his highest priority.

. . . Jesus sought to do God’s will as opposed to his own will

John 6:38  [Jesus:] For I have come down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me.  NET

Jesus spoke what God wanted him to say

John 12:49-50  [Jesus:] For I have not spoken from my own authority, but the Father himself who sent me has commanded me what I should say and what I should speak. 50And I know that his commandment is eternal life. Thus the things I say, I say just as the Father has told me.  NET

 Questions for Section D

Pray for persecuted Christians