Why did Jesus Christ come down to earth?
To seek and to save the lost? Certainly!
To die on the cross for our sins? Absolutely.
To come so that we may have life, and have it abundantly? Most definitely.
To, in the profound mystery of the incarnation, take on human form and thereby bring divinity down, so that human beings may be raised up and become partakers of the divine? Yes.
And yet, I’d contend that in most of our churches, one of the more neglected parts of His mission on earth is this: Jesus Christ came to show us the Father.
That is, Christ came to provide us with a peek into who God is as His Father, as our Father, and as Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis made the following observation,
God is love, and that love works through men—especially through the whole community of Christians. But this spirit of love is, from all eternity, a love going on between the Father and Son.
C.S. Lewis is explaining that this reality – this loving relationship between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit – has existed from before time began. Prior to the creation of the world, a profound and deep relationship existed between the members of the Trinity.
The Father loved and begot the Son; the Son loved and glorified the Father; this love between the Father and Son was eternally manifest in love – the Holy Spirit.
At the Baptism of Jesus, we see this reality. Recorded in Matthew 3, we see the triune God revealed to mankind.
And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:16-17, ESV).
What did God reveal to us at Christ’s baptism?
He revealed His Son. He revealed His triune nature. And He revealed Himself as Father and as Love itself.
In On the Trinity, St. Augustine wrote,
There, then, are three things: he who loves [Father], and that who is loved [Son] and love [Holy Spirit].
This can all seem very mystical and profound, but what does it have to do with us?
In short: everything.
In revealing God the Father to us, Jesus revealed to us God’s identity. But He also revealed to us our identity as well.
We find in Genesis 1:27 that God created man “in his own image” (ESV). That is, mankind was created to be like God in terms of our ability to reason, exercise free will, create and in our capacity to love.
Jesus said, “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9, ESV).
When we see, know and love Jesus Christ, we see know and love the Father. And even better, the Father sees, knows and loves us.
As Glenn T. Stanton, director of Global Family Formation Studies at Focus on the Family has written,
Fatherhood is a deeply precious and sacred thing for the Christian. “Father” is not just a role that God took on in order to tell His story. It is who He is. Fatherhood is the very core of the universe because it is the very center and fount of all reality. Fatherhood is the original and most fundamental nature of God.
On this Father’s Day, we should be grateful for the divine fatherhood of God, who has made us and given us life. For it is a part of the very nature of a father to create and to give life.
God has given us very good things. Not only physical life, but divine life in Him.
Jesus teaches in Matthew 7:11:
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him! (ESV).
This Father’s Day, you may have had an unloving and difficult relationship with your father. If you are a father, there may be moments of fatherhood that you regret. While none of us are perfect, God is.
So, remember that God is our Father. He is a good Father. And He has given us everything.
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