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Saturday, May 3, 2014

Men Whose Eyes Have Seen the King # 13

Four Major Elements

Do you notice how this Transfiguration was the confirmation and complement of all the teaching? Look again at the record of the Transfiguration in Matthew 17. What have we? We have the four major elements of the Christian faith and the Christian life:

1. The Person of the Lord Jesus

"When Jesus came into the parts of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, "Who do men say that the Son of man is?" And they said, "Some say John the Baptist, some, Elijah; and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets." He saith unto them, "But who say ye that I am?" And Simon Peter answered and said, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God." And Jesus answered and said unto him, "Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jonas: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My Father which is in heaven" (Matthew 16:13-17).

"Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God." I think that there it might have been said that Peter, once again, did not know what he was talking about! It was a tremendous utterance: "Thou art the Messiah! Thou art the Messiah!" Both "Christ" and "Messiah" mean "The Anointed One," and, as such, the Son of the Living God. Here is the basic fact of Christianity - the Person of the Lord Jesus. For a man like Peter, a Jew, versed and saturated in the Old Testament and Jewish history, to say that, meant far more than we realize. Think of the tremendous things that were bound up with that word "Messiah!"

There were three great conceptions of the Messiah in Israel. The first we find in the first part of the prophecies of Isaiah - the "Son of David"; the Seed and the Son of David. You remember Isaiah's prophecy about "the shoot of Jesse" (Isaiah 11:1): that was the first conception of the coming Messiah, the Anointed One, Who should take over the Throne of David, and all that that meant.

In the second part of Isaiah, the Messiah is the Suffering Servant of Jehovah; King-Redeemer, Redeemer-King; and Isaiah 53 stands right at the center of that conception of the Messiah. We see the Throne, and Redemption: how it is going to work out.

~T. Austin-Sparks~
(continued with # 14)

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