Daily D – John 5:19
Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, the Son is not able to do anything on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, the Son likewise does these things.
JOHN 5:19 (CSB)
(The Singer by Calvin Miller)
A carpenter’s son would stand at his father’s shoulder when he reached the age of twelve or thirteen. He would observe everything his father did. He would hear the plans. He would participate in the preparation. He would follow instructions. He would learn to shape timber into tools, furniture, and houses. The father would initiate. The son would respond with like action.
Jesus chose twelve men in particular as apprentices. They would be with Jesus and hear what he said and observe what he did. Then they would join him in his work. Then he would send them out to do the work and report back. Finally, he would commission them to carry on his work and accomplish greater things than he himself could do alone (John 14:12).
The Apostle Paul learned this lesson well and passed it along. He said, “Imitate me, as I also imitate Christ,” (1 Corinthians 11:1). Earlier in this same book, he said something similar. In 4:15-17, he says more about this principle.
“For you may have countless instructors in Christ, but you don’t have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. Therefore I urge you to imitate me. This is why I have sent Timothy to you. He is my dearly loved and faithful child in the Lord. He will remind you about my ways in Christ Jesus, just as I teach everywhere in every church.”
Paul followed the model of Jesus.
- Jesus did what the Father did.
- Paul did what Jesus did.
- Timothy did what Paul did.
At whose shoulder do you stand to learn the rhythms and routines, the lifestyle of discipleship? Who provides you with instruction, example, and encouragement? Who helps you keep the promises you make to God and to yourself? Who helps you do what Jesus would do if he were you?
Who is your Timothy? Where is your Corinth?
A family, a workplace, and a community each require someone who will follow the model of Jesus and Paul in knowing what our Father wants and cooperating with him in bringing it to reality where we live, work, and play. This is life’s greatest privilege and most solemn responsibility.
Where is God at work around you? Join him along with others who are following the pattern of Jesus and Paul. Take your Timothy or Tammy to learn and to serve together.
I will follow the model of Jesus and Paul.
Our Father, empower us to live lives worthy of imitation. Give us ears to hear your clear instruction. Give us willing and obedient hearts to do what you say. Give us leaders worthy of imitation. Make us disciples others can look to as examples and models who follow close after you. Amen.
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Psalm 139:17, 18 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
2 Corinthians 5:1-5 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 10:13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.