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Sunday, July 09, 2017

Impressions, by Martin Wells Knapp, 56

In a previous excerpt, Knapp stated that there are four features of "impressions" from God. These are Scriptural; Right (consistent with good morals); Providential (in harmony with God's will); and Reasonable. His discussion of the result of living by "Convictions from Above" continues:


"Leaving us an example, that ye should follow in His steps." -- 1 Peter 2: 21.

Jesus is man's perfect model. The pen portrait of His life which hangs in the gallery of the gospels should be our constant study. He was a living illustration of the truth which He proclaimed and which we are to practice. He "practiced what He preached," and His glowing example proclaims the practicability of His gospel.

As there are many men who do not understand the nature of electricity or the laws that govern an electric current, and yet who walk gladly in the beautiful light thus generated; so there are those who are ignorant of the principles and precepts written in the Word, who can not fail to see their beauty as manifested in the life of Him who is the Light of all worlds, and in whose presence all lesser lights grow dim.

If we will remember the following facts in regard to Him it will aid us greatly in following in His footsteps.

(a). He was just as really and fully Human as He was Divine. "He took man's nature . . . . so that two whole and perfect nature, the Godhead and manhood, were joined together in one person." In the dazzling splendor and majesty of His divine nature men sometimes seem to forget that He was also just as really and intensely human as any other mortal, and that He was the "seed of the woman" as really as the "Son of God." It needs, therefore, to be remembered and emphasized that the King of glory was also the despised Nazarene; that the Creator of all worlds was the helpless babe of Bethlehem's manger; that He who is the Bread of Life was once a hungry, homeless itinerant; that He who is to be the Judge of all men was Himself subject to the law; that He who was "declared to be the Son of God with power" was also "a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;" that He who is to wipe away the tears of others, Himself wept and sweat great drops of blood; that He who has the "keys of death, Himself was obedient unto death;" that He unto whom is given all power in heaven and on earth, was the one who fainted under the weight of the cross as He was led to Calvary, and that "God over all blessed for evermore," was the crucified carpenter.

The humanity of Jesus was just as essential to our salvation as His divinity. Divested of it He would have had no human voice to proclaim His gospel to us, no tears to shed for us, no blood with which to redeem us, no experience in common with ours to qualify Him to act as our Advocate with the Father, and enable Him to sympathize with us in our sorrows and temptations. There would have been no crucifixion and hence no resurrection.

Jesus strongly emphasizes the fact of His humanity by His frequent use, in referring to Himself; of the title, "The Son of Man." In Matthew's gospel alone He uses this title over thirty times, and not once the title, "The Son of God," which was just as truly His. This touching condescension on His part tells of His tender love for us. It is as if a son of the most honorable family in the land, in order to save some poor degraded criminal, would voluntarily lay aside his own honored family name, and cheerfully take that of the outcast thus to prove his affection for him. Blessed Jesus, how unmeasurably great is Thy love for fallen man! With glad hearts we embrace Thee, our elder brother, and cherish the blessed thought that the Son of God is also the Son of man. Thus highest heaven stoops to kiss lost earth, and by that kiss conquers it.

Excerpted from Impressions, by Martin Wells Knapp. Original publication date, 1892. Public domain. My source is here. The previous post in the series is here.

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