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The significance of christmas – Part 7

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Emeritus Prof. Mercy Olumide


Christ did not just have the appearance of being a man— He actually became human to identify with our sins; (5) Christ voluntarily laid aside His divine rights and privileges out of love for His Father; (6) Christ died on the cross for our sins, so we wouldn’t have to face eternal death; (7) God glorified Christ because of His obedience; (8) God raised Christ to His original position at the Father’s right hand, where He will reign forever as our Lord and Judge. How can we do anything less than praise Christ as Lord and dedicated ourselves to His service!

Why Jesus submitted Himself to temptation by Satan Know that Satan could not have tempted Jesus if Jesus did not allow it
“…. the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold over me, 31 but he comes so that the world may learn that I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me.” (Jn 14:30,31)

Although Satan, the ruler of this world, was unable to overpower Jesus (Matthew 4), he still had the arrogance to try. Satan’s power exists only because God allows him to act. But because Jesus is sinless, Satan has no power over Him. If we obey Jesus and align ourselves closely with God’s purposes, Satan can have no power over us. Satan “the prince of this world” has no hold on Jesus. Satan has a hold on people because of their fallen state. Since Christ was sinless, Satan could have no hold on Him. Jesus said, “I do exactly what My Father has commanded Me” (v31)

“My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.” (Jn 4:34)
Note also that no one could kill Jesus, if He did not allow it.“Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.” (Jn 10:17-18)Jesus’ death and resurrection, as part of God’s plan for the salvation of the world, were under God’s full control. No one could kill Jesus without His consent.

To identify fully with human beings, Jesus had to endure Satan’s temptations.
“Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness. 13 And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan.” (Mark 1:12-13)
Although Jesus is God, He is also man. And as fully human, He was not exempt from Satan’s attacks.

Because Jesus faced temptations and overcame them, He can assist us in two important ways: (1) as an example of how to face temptation without sinning, and (2) as a Helper Who knows just what we need because He went through the same experience. In living and suffering as a human person, Jesus sympathises with our weaknesses (Heb 4:15-16). As the divine Son of God, He has the power to deliver us from sin’s bondage and Satan’s power (Acts 26:18; Col 2:15; Heb 2:14; 7:25). As both divine and sinless human, He qualifies to serve as a sacrifice for the sins of every person and as a high priest to intercede for all who come to God (Heb 2:9-18; 5:1-9; 7:24-28; 10:4-12).


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Mercy Olumide
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