Musings – Author & Finisher of Our Faith

Author & Finisher of Our Faith

 

Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author {ἀρχηγός ‘archēgos”} and finisher {τελειωτής ‘teleiōtēs’} of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

 

We are not to look to Abraham, Isaac or Jacob, we are not to look to Moses, David, or Elijah, we are not to look to first century Judaism to earnestly contend for the faith once delivered (Jude 1:3)…we are to look to Messiah Jesus, the Word of God made flesh.  The root of which we are to seek is not Hebrew, it is Jesus, the Word of God made flesh, the manifestation of God’s love.

Col 2:6  Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him,
Col 2:7  being rooted and being built up in Him, and being confirmed in the faith, even as you were taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.
Col 2:8  Watch that there not be one robbing you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the elements of the world, and not according to Christ.

Eph 3:17  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
Eph 3:18  May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
Eph 3:19  And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
Eph 3:20  Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
Eph 3:21  Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

 

Knowledge of the way in which believers worshiped in the 1st century is not as important as knowledge God (2 Peter 1:2), and the love of Messiah (Ephesians 3:19; 2 Peter 3:18) by His Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:6; Romans 5:5; 8:2-4).  Messiah did not come to make mankind into 1st century Jews.  He came to redeem mankind (2 Corinthians 5:19) and remake them into His image (Romans 8:29; 1 John 3:1-3).  Jesus is THE image of God  (Hebrews 1:3; 2 Corinthians 4:4-6; Colossians 1:15-16) who is love (1 John 4:8).


Much edification can be gained by studying believers of the 1st century (Job 8:8; 12:12; Deuteronomy 32:7; Romans 15:4; 1 Corinthians 10:11), but one cannot come to the fullness of God’s will (Ephesians 3:19; 4:13; Colossians 2:9-10) by following man’s understanding of His will at that time.  Paul, who had great understanding of religion during the 1st century, did not even claim to have attained the full knowledge of Messiah/the Word (Philippians 3:8-14).  Peter admonishes us to continue to grow in His grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18).  Scripture declares that God has given various gifts and services to the body of Messiah that we might grow unto perfection (Ephesians 4:11-13).  If 1st century believers had attained unto God’s perfect will, there would be no need to grow.   James also said that we all stumble in many things (James 3:2).  This is not the language of one who believes that perfection had been attained.

 

It is not walking as 1st century Jews which is God’s will for us.  It is walking in His love by His Spirit (1 John 4:12-17) as it is done in heaven (Matthew 6:10).  It is God working in us, through His Son (Philippians 2:13; Hebrews 13:21).  This cannot be done by submission unto man, this can only be done through submitting unto Him (Romans 12:1-2; 1 Peter 1:14).  This cannot be done by conforming oneself to man’s understanding (Romans 12:2), this can only be done by being conformed/transformed into the image of Messiah (Romans 8:29) through the work of God’s Spirit (Philippians 3:21).

 

1Jn 4:12  No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
1Jn 4:13  Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.
1Jn 4:16  And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
1Jn 4:17  Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

 

It is during the Second Temple times that the Messenger of the Covenant (Malachi 3:1) would be sent to Israel to reveal to them the true meaning and intent of the law, to lead them to bear fruit of the Spirit which is a sweet smelling odor to God (2 Corinthians 2:14-17; Ephesians 5:2).  This fruit brings forth His smell or aroma which is His Word (Matthew 13:18-23; John 15:1-16; Psalm 1:1-3; Galatians 5:22-23; Philippians 1:11).  Scripture equates His Word with His Name (Revelation 19:13).  In Hebrew, the word for name is שם ‘shem’ which literally means the ‘aroma’ or breath of a person, their character.

 

The Messenger of the Covenant who is sent to Israel is likened unto a refiner’s fire (Malachi 3:1-3).  John the Baptist, in the spirit of Elijah, was sent to prepare the way for this Messenger and to warn of His fire (Malachi 4:5; Matthew 3:1-12; 11:13-14; 17:10-13; Luke 1:17; John 1:21-23). John the Baptist came with the ‘Elijah Message‘ which consists in part of teaching who true Israel is, those redeemed through Messiah by His grace (Matthew 3:9-12; Romans 11:1-5).

 

The fruit which Israel was called to produce was the ‘goodly’ fruit of His Word (Jeremiah 11:16).  However, Israel did not produce this fruit but brought forth wicked fruit (Jeremiah 24:2-8).  As a result, God brought fire upon this olive tree, breaking off the branches thereof (Jeremiah 11:16-17).  The Hebrew word for ‘goodly’ in Jeremiah 11:16 is תאר ‘toar’ which means a shape, form, outline or figure of a thing.   תאר ‘toar’ is a cognate of the word תורה ‘torah’ which literally means instruction which defines the border of a people or the ‘image’ of a people. תורה ‘torah’ is most commonly translated as ‘law.’  Here we see that Israel was to produce the fruit of His Law which would bring forth His image to the world.  His Image is that of love (1John 4:8, 16; Matthew 22:35-40).

 

Israel did not bring forth this image of love (Luke 7:36-47; 10:27-37; 18:9-14).  Although they were zealous for the law (Acts 21:20; 22:3), in their zealousness they corrupted its true meaning (Romans 10:2). They were outwardly religious, yet inwardly full of wickedness (Luke 11:39; 16:15; 20:47; Matthew 6:2-5, 16; 23:5, 25-27). They separated themselves from the peoples of the world, declaring anyone who didn’t worship God according to their traditions was an unclean heathen (John 4:9; 8:48; Acts 10:28).  When they did ‘preach’ to the nations, they turned proselytes into children of hell (Matthew 23:15), children of wrath (Ephesians 2:3) who hated others as they did (John 4:9; 8:48; 15:25).

 

By their traditions they had put up a dividing wall between themselves and others (Acts 21:28; Ephesians 2:14-15), preventing them from drawing nearer to God (Luke 11:52) as Israel was to be the custodians of His Word (Romans 3:2; John 4:22) which reveals His nature to mankind.  It was their traditions which corrupted the Word of God (Matthew 15:2-9; Mark 7:3-13; Colossians 2:8) and perverted the message of His love to mankind, which led Jesus Christ to declare them as lawless (Matthew 23:28; John 7:19).  It is because of this lack of love (Matthew 5:22; John 15:25) that the Lord was sent to Israel to separate the good trees from the bad (Malachi 3:2-3; 4:1; Matthew 3:10-12; Luke 3:9; John 15:2).

 

The inheritance was taken away from the bad trees and given to a nation that would produce the fruit of love which the Lord desires (Matthew 21:33-46; Mark 12:1-12; 1 Peter 2:4-9; Galatians 3:1-29).   Believers in Messiah became a ‘reformed’ Olive tree and were given the call to abide in Him (Hebrews 3:1-6), being formed into His image (Philippians 3:14-15; Ephesians 1:1-6; 1:17-23), bearing forth His fruit (2 Peter 1:5-9), called to bring forth God’s Gospel of love to the world (2 Timothy 1:9-11), revealing His image (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12).

 

The Greek word for ‘calling is κλῆσις ‘klēsis’ which is used in the Septuagint to translate the Hebrew word קרא ‘qara’ which is associated with manifesting God’s name/image on earth.

 

The religious leaders of Israel during the days of King Herod were zealous for the law, but this zealousness was not mixed with the true intent of the law which is faith, hope and love (1 Corinthians 13:13).  As a result, God sent John the Baptist to prepare the way for the Messiah (Matthew 3:1,3; 11:10; Luke 3:4; 7:27).  The message of John the Baptist and the Messiah was one of restoration (Malachi 3:3-4; 4:5-6; Matthew 17:11-12; Mark 9:11-13).  Restoration to the true meaning and intent of the Word of God (Luke 1:68-79; 3:3-18).

 

The religious leaders of Israel had inherited a zealousness for the law from the Maccabees and saw their religion as that which defined them (1 Maccabees 2:19; 2 Maccabees 8:1; 14:38).  The message of John the Baptist and Messiah Jesus was not that of religion, but of relationship with God through covenant (Acts 5:20; Luke 3:8; 13:25-29; Matthew 7:21-23; 18:3; 21:31; Luke 6:46).  Sadly, many today are falling into the same trap as the religious leaders of Israel in the 1st century.  They are defining themselves, not by their relationship with God through Messiah, but are defining themselves based upon their adherence or knowledge to movements/denominations and doctrine.

 

We are called to be unified in Messiah who is love (Colossians 3:14; 1 Corinthians 13:9-13; Romans 13:10; 1 John 4:10, 12, 16; 5:3) not divided into carnal cliques based upon one’s ability to conform to doctrine (1 Corinthians 3:3-4; Jude 1:19; Philippians 2:3; Galatians 5:19-20).  Those who walk in this manner cannot please God (Romans 8:6-8).  Messiah is not divided (1 Corinthians 1:12-13), His body is to be unified (John 17:11, 21-22; Romans 12:5; 1 Corinthians 6:15-17; Galatians 3:28; Ephesians 4:5; Philippians 1:27; 2:2).

 

Zealousness for God’s truth is great (Revelation 3:19; Titus 2:14), but we must be careful that this zealousness does not turn into carnal envy (1 Corinthians 3:3).  Although we have been given God’s Spirit, we still have sin dwelling in our carnal flesh (Romans 7:11, 17-18).  Carnality is carnality whether or not it is disguised as religion or not.  Sadly, many times our zealousness for God can be used by satan to lead us into persecution of one another in the guise of religious zeal (Acts 22:3-4; Philippians 3:6; Romans 10:2-4).  This religious ‘passion’ does not bring forth the righteousness of God (James 1:20).   It is ‘devilish’ (James 3:13-18).  The love of God does not behave in this manner for love ‘envies’ not (1 Corinthians 13:4).

 

The religion which was set up by the leaders of Israel during 2nd Temple times became known as the tradition of the elders (Matthew 15:3), a set of guidelines which the nation was to follow.  In and of itself this is not a negative thing but the problem is that the people exalted their traditions above the Word of God.  As a result, this religiosity became in reality, lawlessness (John 7:19; Matthew 23:28; Galatians 6:13).  The religious leaders of the second Temple were outwardly religious but inwardly were full of lawlessness (Luke 11:39; 16:15; 20:47; Matthew 6:2-5, 16; 23:5, 25-27; John 7:19; Matthew 23:28; Galatians 6:13).  Ultimately, this led to their destruction (John 15:25).

 

Sadly, this same thing religious spirit is seen in many religious believers today.  We who have been given a taste of heaven, ought not act in such a manner (Hebrews 6:4).  We should be bearing the fruit of love and mercy and forgiveness (John 15:1-10; Galatians 5:22-23; Philippians 1:11), not the thorns and briars of hatred and condemnation (Hebrews 6:8; Luke 13:7-9).  The LORD is the God of all, who loves all (John 3:16) and desires that all come to salvation (2 Peter 3:9; 1 Timothy 2:4) through Jesus who is the revelation of His name/memorial/character/image.

 

The message of Jesus is universal.  It transcends religions, ethnic or cultural barriers.  It is a message of love and reconciliation back to God, the message of victory over death which entered into the world when Adam and Eve partook of the fruit of the tree of knowledge (Romans 5:12-21; 1 Corinthians 15:45-48; 55-56).  This message of forgiveness and restoration is not just for Israel, but whosoever shall believe in the Lord Jesus.

 

John 3:15  That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:17  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

 

Jesus did not play religion.  He reached out the sick, the blind, the deaf, the adulterer, the sinner and the tax-collector.  Those who knew they needed Him (Matthew 9:12; Mark 2:17; Luke 9:11).  Those who saw how helpless they were without Him.  This is what true religion is (James 1:26-27; Proverbs 21:3; Isaiah 1:17; Hosea 6:6; Micah 6:8; Matthew 9:13; Mark 12:33).  Not doctrine, but acts of love towards one another (John 13:35; 1 John 3:17; 4:12, 20-21).

 

The true intent of the Torah/Word of God is not to make men religious but to reform men into the image of God who is love (1 John 4:8).  It is this love that unites us and perfects us.  It is the bond of perfection (Colossians 3:14) which sets man free (Galatians 5:13-14).  This love is not intended only for a certain group of religious people, but for all mankind.  Scripture declares that in the Messiah shall the ‘gentiles trust’ (Matthew 12:21; Romans 15:8-12; Isaiah 11:10).  For Jesus is the true Light which enlightens every man (John 1:9; 12:44-46; Isaiah 49:6), sent to restore ALL of mankind back to God (Isaiah 45:22; Romans 3:29; John 1:12; 3:15-17).

 

This concept of love is found in every religion, it is the commonality which points back to Jesus who is the epitome of God’s love (John 3:16; 1 John 4:8-16).  It is not doctrine or knowledge of 1st century Judaism which leads others to the truth.  It is the love of God within us.  ‘Christ in you, the hope of glory‘ (Colossians 1:27).

 

Colossians 3:10  And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
Colossians 3:11  Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.
Colossians 3:12  Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;
Colossians 3:13  Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
Colossians 3:14  And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.
Colossians 3:15  And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
Colossians 3:16  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Colossians 3:17  And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

 

Scripture declares that love of one’s fellow man is equated with love of God (1 John 4:11-12, 20-21) and is the fulfillment and purpose of His Word (Matthew 22:39-40; Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 6:2).  It does not say love of one’s fellow religious counterpart, but of one’s fellow MAN (Galatians 6:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; 3 John 1:11), even our enemies (Luke 6:35).

 

Jesus brought change to Israel.  The bringing about of the New Covenant through the Messiah was based upon change (Hebrews 1:1-2; 7:12).  A change from the first covenant to a new and better covenant between God and man (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Hebrews 7:19-22; 8:6-13; 10:1-20; 12:24).  This change would be so drastic that Jesus had to warn the people that He didn’t come to destroy the law of God but to bring about the true meaning and intent (Matthew 5:17-20; Isaiah 42:21; Psalm 40:7; Romans 10:4).  A return to the true meaning and intent of the law…a restoration of all things (Acts 3:19-21).

 

The word for Hebrews {עברים ‘ivrim’} is the plural form of עבר  ‘avar’ which means to pass over a thing.  It is the source of the word past.  Hebrews are those who leave the past and press on to the mark of the high calling of Messiah {Philippians 3:13-15; 1 John 3:14; John 5:24}.  Those who are called to spread the message of the Gospel that all are in slavery to sin but are given the opportunity to be free in Messiah.  They have passed from death to life (1 John 3:14; John 5:24) from darkness to light (Colossians 1:13; Acts 26:18).

 

Scripture teaches there was a big change in Israel when Messiah came and there was a split between those who were of His flock and those who were not (Luke 2:34).  Those who were not, later led by a man named Akiva, decided to make their own religion in opposition to God’s Shepherd.  They rejected Him, so they were rejected (1 Peter 2:7; Matthew 21:33-44).  All the branches of the olive tree were cut off (Jeremiah 11:16-17; Luke 3:8-9) both Jew and Gentile must be grafted in (Romans 11:17, 24) to THE Olive of Israel who is Messiah (Isaiah 49:3-6; Luke 2:29-32).

 

According to Messiah, the leadership of the Jews during His day (and consequently most Jews of that period) were lawless and not walking in God’s Torah (John 7:19; Matthew 23:28).  Paul spoke of this same fact (Galatians 6:13). Scripture also says that those who don’t have Him don’t have the Father (John 15:23-24; 1 John 2:22-23; 2 John 1:9). There was much advantage to being a Jew at that time but more importantly, the advantage now applies to “spiritual” Jews who have the Word (both old and new – Matthew 13:52; 23:34) and the Spirit. In short, it matters not whether one is a Jew or not, all that matters is being one in Messiah (Galatians 3:27-28; 6:15).

 

Our goal should not be to be conformed into the image of 1st Century Jews.  Our goal is to be transformed into Messiah’s likeness.  Messiah humbled Himself to become as the seed of Abraham (Hebrews 2:16-17; Philippians 2:5-8), who had fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23), that we might be glorified in Him (Hebrews 2:10-11; Romans 8:29-30).  Messiah did not come to make mankind into 1st century Jews.  He came to redeem mankind (2 Corinthians 5:19) and remake them into His image (Romans 8:29; 1 John 3:1-3; Hebrews 3:14; 12:10; 2 Peter 1:2-4; 2 Corinthians 5:21).

 

The Word of God is perfect (Psalm 19:7; James 1:25), but cannot bring man to perfection because man is not perfect (Hebrews 7:19; 10:1). The Word of God is the ‘perfect law of liberty’ but men who have tried to walk in this perfect law have never seen true liberty because of the sin which dwells within man enslaves Him (Romans 7:14-25; 9:31-32). It is only through the law of liberty being implanted into the heart of man that a change can occur which leads to perfection (Ezekiel 11:19-20; Romans 2:28-29; Colossians 2:11-13; 2 Corinthians 3:3, 6, 17-18).

 

It is through this ‘circumcision of the heart’ that the true intent of the law can be revealed in the lives of believers. It is through this circumcision of the heart that one becomes a true Hebrew or Jew (Romans 2:28-29; Philippians 3:3).

 

The message of John the Baptist and the Messiah was one of restoration (Malachi 3:3-4; 4:5-6; Matthew 17:11-12; Mark 9:11-13).  Restoration to the true meaning and intent of the Word of God (Luke 1:68-79; 3:3-18).  As mentioned previously, the true meaning and intent of God’s law is love.

 

The Gospel is a message of reconciliation between God and man through Jesus Christ where man is returned to his original state in the Garden (1 Corinthians 15:47-49; Romans 5:12-21), walking in the true intent of the law, the perfect law of liberty (John 8:31-32; Isaiah 8:16; Psalm 119:42-45; James 1:25; 2:10-12; Galatians 5:1, 13-14; 2 Corinthians 3:17), working out ones salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:13).

 

The end/goal of faith is salvation.

 

1Pe 1:9  Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
1Pe 1:10  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
1Pe 1:11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
1Pe 1:12  Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
1Pe 1:13  Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
1Pe 1:14  As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
1Pe 1:15  But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
1Pe 1:16  Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

 

Salvation is pictured in the Hebrew language as a Shepherd saving His sheep from an enemy.

 

 

We are to be re-created into His Holy image…

 

1Pe 1:22  Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
1Pe 1:23  Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

 


1Th 4:1  Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.
1Th 4:2  For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.
1Th 4:3  For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

Rom 11:16  Now if the firstfruit is holy, so also the lump. And if the root is holy, so also the branches.

Joh 15:1  I am the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.
Joh 15:2  Every branch in Me not bearing fruit, He takes it away; and each one bearing fruit, He prunes, so that it may bear more fruit.
Joh 15:3  You are already pruned because of the Word which I have spoken to you.
Joh 15:4  Remain in Me, and I in you. As the branch is not able to bear fruit of itself, unless it remain in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me.
Joh 15:5  I am the Vine; you are the branches. The one abiding in Me, and I in him, this one bears much fruit, because apart from Me you are not able to execute, nothing.
Joh 15:6  Unless one remains in Me, he is cast out as the branch and is dried up; and they gather and throw them into a fire, and they are burned.
Joh 15:7  If you remain in Me, and My Words remain in you, whatever you desire you will ask, and it shall happen to you.
Joh 15:8  In this My Father is glorified, that you should bear much fruit; and you will be disciples to Me.
Joh 15:9  As the Father loved Me, I also loved you; continue in My love.
Joh 15:10  If you keep My commandments you will continue in My love, as I have kept My Father’s commandments and continue in His love.
Joh 15:11  I have spoken these things to you that My joy may abide in you, and your joy may be full.

 


Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author
{ἀρχηγός ‘archēgos”}and finisher {τελειωτής ‘teleiōtēs’} of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

 

ἀρχηγός ‘archēgos’ is speaking of Messiah as the author, prince, leader of our faith.  ἀρχηγός ‘archēgos’ is a combination of the Greek words ἀρχή ‘archē’ which means beginning or chief and ἄγω ‘agō’ which means leader.  Messiah is the leader from the beginning.  The Greek word τελειωτής ‘teleiōtēs’ means completion or perfection from the root word τελειόω ‘teleioō’ which means to bring to an end as in completing or fulfilling a goal.  Messiah is that goal/end.

 

Messiah is the beginning & the end, the Alpha & Omega…(Revelation 1:8, 11; 21:6; 22:13).

 

1Jn 4:12  No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
1Jn 4:16  And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
1Jn 4:17  Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

Joh 17:16  They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
Joh 17:17  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
Joh 17:18  As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
Joh 17:19  And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
Joh 17:20  Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
Joh 17:21  That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
Joh 17:22  And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
Joh 17:23  I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
Joh 17:24  Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.
Joh 17:25  O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.
Joh 17:26  And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.

 

 

Heb 12:2 Looking unto {ἀφοράω ‘aphoraō’} Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

 

The Greek word translated as ‘looking’ in Hebrews 12:2 is ἀφοράω ‘aphoraō’ which literally means to turn the eyes away from other things and fix them on a particular object, in this case Jesus.  The only way we can walk in God’s love and be formed into His image is to keep our eyes focused on Messiah Jesus.  For more on this see the study SEEK HIS FACE AND THE GOLDEN RULE.

 

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