Suspended intimacy

John 8:29
And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.

Just how forsaken was Jesus?
In my previous post I wrote on how Jesus was forsaken by the Father in his last hours. I came across the verse above in my Bible reading today, and it struck me rather forcefully how truly forsaken Jesus was such that at the cross he would cry “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani” – “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

He who sent me is with me. The Father was with Jesus throughout his ministry. He has not left me alone. The incarnation did not diminish the intimacy between Father and Son. More so, it increased it, for the incarnation pleased the Father. Jesus’ life on earth, as the second Adam, pleased the Father.

But note the connection. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.

The Father was with the Son because everything the Son did, the Father was pleased with. Everything we do, the Father is not pleased with, because as sinners, we do not honour him as God or give thanks to him. 

At the cross, the Son pleased the Father, possibly more than he had at anytime, if it is ever possible to compare infinite pleasure with greater infinite pleasure, in an ultimate demonstration of obedience, by laying down his life according to the Father’s will. But in this crowning moment of obedience, his Father left him completely alone. He had to. The Father had to pour out his wrath on the sin of the world, which was laid on his Son. The Son pleased the Father, yet experienced the complete opposite. Just how forsaken was Jesus? To the extent that the foundation of the intimacy between Father and Son had to be suspended for those final hours. 

This is the price he had to pay on behalf of all our sin. In order that we might please the Father, the Son was forsaken in our place. So we can now say, “The Father has not left me alone, for the Son always do the things that are pleasing to the Father.” 

I say suspended, because the Son now sits enthroned at the Father’s right hand, in all the glory and splendour he had before the foundation of the world. The Father did not leave him alone forever, for he was pleased with him, and raised him from the dead and exalted him to the highest place. To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honour and glory and might forever and ever!

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