"…earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints" Jude 3.

Study 61 – CHRIST, THE PERFECT PRIEST AND LOWLY LAMB

Gleans from Monday Bible Study with Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.

DLBC Old Surulere, Lagos HQ

20th August 2018

Study 61 – CHRIST, THE PERFECT PRIEST AND LOWLY LAMB

Text – John 18:12-27; Luke 3:2; 23:3-12

We are looking at Jesus Christ coming under trial after being betrayed by Judas Iscariot. Annas and Caiaphas were the High Priests to whom Jesus was brought. Caiaphas was that year High Priest, but Annas was still referred to as High Priest because the position was for life. They were also in-laws and despite having differences between them, they used their mutual hatred for Christ to strengthen their bonds. This is what unbelievers still do today, that when they want to contradict or do anything against Christ and His gospel they unite together to fight against the cause of Christ to achieve their own personal goals. You will find this same thing with Pilate and Herod during the trials of Jesus Christ. Pilate and Herod were enemies but they used the trials of Jesus Christ to strengthen their bonds. “And when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see him of a long season, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by him” (Luke 23:8). Herod was very happy when he saw Jesus, and thought Pilate had done him good for sending Jesus to him, “And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves” (Luke 23:12). So the enmity they had between them was settled. Using Christ to fulfil some selfish desire and goals is common among people today. They have no association with Christ neither are they born again, but they just use His name for professional achievements, commercial pursuit, advantageous end, secular attainment, hidden agenda and ambitions, and financial plan they had. This is what happened between Annas and Caiaphas and Pilate and Herod. You want to ask yourself, are you like them? You want to have something and bring in the name of Jesus Christ to fulfill your secular attainment. Using the name, service or worship of Jesus Christ to fulfil your own hidden agenda is sinful and sacrilegious; unrighteous and unfair. Through it all, at His arrest and trial we see Christ’s submission to Annas and Caiaphas like a lowly lamb and on the other side, like a mighty Lion, His Sovereignty; His Meekness – gentle and lowly, and on the other hand His Might. The Christian must have these same attributes of Christ, that on one hand, you are gentle, lowly and meek and on the other hand bold and courageous; on one hand His calmness – very cool and collected, and on the other, His courage. On one hand His poise, and on the other His power; on one hand His lowliness, and on the other hand His boldness, bold as a Lion and yet He is lowly as a lamb; His Peacefulness and His Perfection. He was always balanced. We are converted and recreated to be like Jesus Christ.

3 points:

Point 1: THE PREVIOUS DECLARATION OF SACRILEGIOUS CARNAL CAIAPHAS

John 18:12-14; 11:47-53; Romans 2:21-22; 8:6-8; Hosea 6:7; Jeremiah 9:6; Matthew 26:3-5; Exodus 23:2; Psalms 34:16; Proverbs 2:13-15; 24:8,9; Ecclesiastes 8:11-13; Micah 7:3,4; 1 Peter 3:12; 2 Corinthians 5:10,11

The trial that they were putting in place was not right nor fair because they had decided that this Man will die. Their problem was, they knew that Jesus Christ was mighty, good and powerful, doing the will of God and doing many miracles; and this made them unpopular among the people, so they reasoned “If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.” (John 11:48). Then one assured them Jesus would not continue like that, and counselled thus – “And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not. …., he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;” (John 11:48-51). So they plotted and planned to kill and get rid of Him, acting in their own carnal nature: they were not fighting for righteousness. These same people were doing what they taught the people not to do (Romans 2:21-22), what a sacrilege! There are some preachers today who say, do as I preach, but they themselves will not do what they are preaching, this is sacrilege. They are also carnal, and in enmity with God, “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be” (Romans 8:7). They were evil, and fighting against God. “Thine habitation is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know me, saith the LORD” (Jeremiah 9:6). Think of Annas, Caiaphas, Herod, Pilate and Judas Iscariot, all that they did was deception. “And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtilty, and kill him” (Matthew 26:4). This wasn’t a righteous thing, they did it by cleverness, deceit and subtilty so that the people will think that they were fulfilling the Law. Annas, Caiaphas and the Jewish leaders had decided the outcome of the trials before the arrest – Jesus must die, must be proved guilty. The questioning and interrogation were mere mockery. There was no fairness nor justice in their questioning. They were determined to do evil. Are you like that, in a position of authority to decide the fate of someone, and you have already made up your mind that they must be proved guilty? You are following in the steps of Annas, Caiaphas and Herod. “Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shalt thou speak in a cause to decline after many to wrest judgment” (Exodus 23:2) If you know of a plot to frame or deny anyone their rights, do not be party to it; you will not follow a multitude to do evil. Let there be justice and the right thing done in judgement. “The face of the LORD is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.” (Psalm 34:16) If such people do not repent they cannot be with the Lord.  If you plan to do evil to others, rope them in and declare them guilty before investigation, then you are not a child of God, not born again, because you are like Caiaphas, Annas and these Jewish leaders (Proverbs 2:14). It is salvation that makes us different so that we do not think, nor do or devise to do evil against an innocent neighbour or Christians. A Christian does not have evil thoughts against another Christian, not even a sinner around you. “He that deviseth to do evil shall be called a mischievous person. The thought of foolishness is sin: and the scorner is an abomination to men.” (Proverbs 24:8-9).  Because judgement does not fall immediately, for God is not wiling that any man should perish but that all should come to repentance, this should not make you think that planning or doing evil unto any man is acceptable before God, “Though a sinner do evil an hundred times, and his days be prolonged, yet surely I know that it shall be well with them that fear God, which fear before him: But it shall not be well with the wicked, neither shall he prolong his days, which are as a shadow; because he feareth not before God.” (Ecclesiastes 8:12-13). God is watching our lives, so if we claim to be born again then evil will not be in our hearts, thoughts, and plans. The thought of doing evil is sin. The wicked are passionate, zealous and earnest in doing evil (Micah 7:3), but the Word of God commands us to earnestly contend for the faith once delivered unto the saint. God is against them that do evil though they may hide in the Church (1 Peter 3:12).

These people that sat in judgement against Christ will one day appear before the Judgement Seat of Christ, so likewise the people that are working against Christ, His cause and persecuting real Christians today. We, Christians will judge them one day (2 Corinthians 5:10,11). So we persuade men to repent and the Lord will forgive and set them free so they do not continue to do evil.

Point 2: THE PAINFUL DENIALS OF A SELF-CONFIDENT CHRISTIAN

John 18:15-18,25-27,4-8; 1 Corinthians 10:11,12; Matthew 10:32-33; Luke 12:4-9; Revelations 21:8,27; 22:12-15

Here we can see what had happened to Peter, one of the forefronts of the Lord Jesus Christ. He had been warned by Christ that he would deny Him, but he was confident of himself that he vehemently said he would not deny the Lord. When, however, the battle came, he did just that (Then saith the damsel that kept the door unto Peter, Art not thou also one of this man’s disciples? He saith, I am not.” “And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, Art not thou also one of his disciples? He denied it, and said, I am not.” “Peter then denied again: and immediately the cock crew:” (John 18:17,25,27). The Lord had warned him, to watch and pray. When the men came to arrest him, Jesus made a way of escape for him, so as not to fall, “Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way” (John 18:8). He surrendered Himself so as to let the disciples go their way. Peter should have gone somewhere to pray, instead of being curious about what would happen and staying with those soldiers warming himself. Peter was not careful.  All these things we are reading about people that fell into temptation were written for our learning and admonition so that we do not fall into the same degradation (1 Corinthians 10:11,12). It is over-confidence and self confidence that make men fall into temptations; so we need to be watchful and prayerful.

The Lord is teaching us here that denying Him is a terrible sin and punishable by the Lord. If you deny the Lord and his teachings in time of temptations, trials and before the world, it is a dangerous thing, “But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 10:33). You must pray and watch against that denial (Luke 12:4-9). I will not deny the Lord. Thank God Peter repented and wept bitterly and the Lord restored him, and you can see in Act of the Apostles all the exploits he did and boldness and courage he manifested. They could not catch that man again; he was different. But Why do Christians deny the Lord?

  1. The Fear of Man – (Proverbs 29:25; Isaiah 57:11) The fear of man will always bring a snare upon your life. When you fear man and focus on what they will say or do, you have not fear if but dishonouring the Lord.
  2. Following afar the Master – (Matthew 26:58) When you are not close to your Bible, the promises of God, convictions of the Bible anymore, still following, but afar off. You still believe the doctrines of the Bible but faintly afar off. Your consecration, connection, intimacy, quiet time, prayer life and service unto God not like it used to be, you are following from afar off. There is danger and problem.
  3. Fellowship with the Mockers – (John 18:25,5) Peter had fellowship with them because he wanted to warm himself. There is no other place where you can get that job, certificate, achievements in life except with those mockers, beware. You will not stand nor stay with them. Judas Iscariot who betrayed Jesus stood with them, the same place Peter stood – close to unbelievers, he took the place of Judas Iscariot. When you are too close to the unbelievers that you fellowship with them, because they have what you need, take heed!
  4. Forgetting the Message – (Luke 22:61) He has forgotten the message that the Lord gave him. When we remember and take to heart all we hear in the Church and all our fellowship days, then we will have the victory. It is a pity when a preacher falls that he cannot remember the words that he preached unto the people. Thank God, I will forget. When we forget, we fall.
  5. Fainting in the Mind – (Hebrews 12:3) Peter saw all that happened to Jesus, and He did not do anything but submitted Himself to all those sufferings, but he fainted in his mind. We are to look unto Jesus who did not faint in His mind, we are to stand like Daniel and the three Hebrew children. I will stand. There is no fainting.
  6. Faithlessness at the critical Moment – (Hebrews 10:38,39) There are people that have faith before the challenges, trials, sicknesses, but when the moment comes, they forget all those faith confessions. But you will not faint; your faith will not go down.
  7. Falsehood before the Multitude – (Proverbs 14:5; 19:5,9) Peter saw the multitude, he began to shake and became false before the multitude. “A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish” (Proverbs 19:9). Pray that you will not perish. Lying, white, black, small or big lie will get out of your life completely. Tell the truth and put the devil to shame.

Point 3: THE PERFECT DIGNITY OF THE SUBMISSIVE COURAGEOUS CHRIST

John 18:19-24; 8:46; 1 Peter 2:20-23; 1:18,19; Hebrews 4:14-16; 7:24-26; 1 John 3:5-9; 5:18

“The high priest then asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his doctrine” (John 18:19). They were not interested in His disciples or doctrines, just looking for something to nail Him with. “Jesus answered him, If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou me?” (John 18:23). You see, Christ was peaceful, calm and collected, poised, not afraid of them, they were the creatures and He is the Creator, just a man, while Christ is Lord. Pray that God will give us courage and boldness so we will not be afraid of those persecutors. We must be cool and courageous, not running away; you are a child of  King, greater is He that is in you than the one in them.

Jesus Christ is the Perfect One, He had perfect dignity and courage, just and holy He was, yet treated unjustly and unholily; sinless and guiltless, yet He was treated as if He was guilty and sinful; great and glorious yet He was treated with ignominy and humiliation; He is our Substitute and Saviour. Thank God for Jesus Christ as our Saviour. Perfect, Pure and Powerful, He stood there; you can see the perfection of Christ there from the words He spoke. He was Godly, Good and Glorious. You will see His majesty even in the trials, goodness and godliness coming out. He was Sinless, Spotless and Stainless. They could not accuse Him of sin or getting angry, he was not afraid as well. Whatever happens, God has ordained and prophesied it. All things work together for good for them that love Him, and His grace is sufficient. Jesus remained Holy, Honoured and Heavenly even during His trials. He was Blameless, Faultless and Flawless. He was Meek, Merciful and Mighty. He was Faithful, Forgiving and Forbearing. He was Perfect and this He did for you. Through it all, He did not commit sin, and you too will not commit sin whatever is happening to you in Jesus Name. “Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?” (John 8:46). He could tell them that boldly and courageously because there was no sin in his life, and there will be no sin in your life.

“For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps” (1 Peter 2:21). You will follow the steps of Christ, calm but courageous, lowly but bold. When you come to Christ, He gives you grace, and you will not do evil, righteousness will be in your life and heart (1 John 3:5-9). Because we are born of God, He gives us His grace that we remain holy and righteous that when temptation comes, we stand like Jesus stood, firm, fearless, faithful and we are going to overcome. “We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not” (1 John 5:18). You will be victorious in Jesus Name.

Ponder on this! The Christian must have the same attributes of Christ, that on one hand, you are gentle, lowly and meek; and on the other hand you are bold and courageous. Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.

Ponder on this! Because we are born of God, He gives us His grace that we remain holy and righteous that when temptation comes, we stand like Jesus stood, firm, fearless, faithful and we are going to overcome. Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.

Reflection – Using the Name, service or worship of Jesus Christ to fulfil your own secular attainment, commercial pursuit or hidden agenda is sinful and sacrilegious; using something of heaven to achieve something on earth is unrighteous. Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.

Words on the Marble – A Christian does not plan nor devise evil against anybody. Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.

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