Tuesday, October 30, 2007

This lesson from John is one of my Dad's very best and a favorite of mine:

The Hand of Jesus

And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. John 17:22-23

Jesus told us that when we pray, we should pray this way, “'Our Father in heaven....” (Matthew 6:9) In other words, our relationship with God is the intimate relationship of child and parent. When you see a child take Mommy or Daddy’s hand, and walk with security amidst other people or anything that might threaten them, you know the child is being protected by the parent. Everyone does that. You may have your own children and you’ve done it yourself.

What you don’t realize most of the time as a Christian—and sometimes I don’t stop to think about it either—is that in Jesus Christ, God has given us his hand. He is walking with us through the world, through our tribulations, through our trials, through all of the things which come upon us, through the attacks of Satan—he’s there. The hand never lets go. You may sometimes try and wiggle out of it, but your security rests in the hand that holds you. That’s the intimacy of parent and child.

In this chapter of John, Christ is talking about intimacy between the Father, the Son and the Church. He’s saying my father and I are intimately involved in an eternal relationship—and you are now involved in our relationship, too. His prayer is that we will be in union with him and with the Father, the same way he is in union with his Father. This a revelation: We are in union with God in a way that had never been known before. We have an intimacy with him that had never been disclosed before. This was a New Testament revelation.

You and I can’t ever be gods because there is only one God. We can’t be God because God alone is eternal and we’re finite. So, what is it God’s trying to tell us here? He’s trying to tell us that he has adopted us into his family and bestowed upon us his family name. We are not deity, but we are his children and we inherit as his children exactly what his Son inherits.

In Jesus Christ, we are the inheritors of the glory of God. That may come as quite a jolt to our rather stunted minds, at least it always has to mine. But, nevertheless, it’s true. It is so wonderful, so incomprehensible that it’s truthfulness sometimes slips by us. It shouldn’t. When God says we will inherit and sit with him in his throne, by throne he means the center of authority, the center of power, the center of glory. The very center of Heaven itself is the throne of God. Now, angels sing his praises around his throne, but the Church inherits to sit with him in his throne. That is a stunning fact and it escapes us most of the time.

You may say, “Do you mean that some day I am going to sit at the center of authority—all power, all knowledge, all wisdom? That I will sit in the midst of the Shekinah of Yahweh Elohim, which destroys anything that looks at it? I’m going to be there in an immortal body?” Yes! And not only are you going to be there in an immortal body, but you’re going to judge the angels! I can’t wait until Lucifer comes before me—I’m going to get my licks in, then!

You see, we don’t understand. We don’t understand that we have been destined for the throne of God; that we have been predestined to his glory. The glory that Christ and God had before time began has been given to the Church when we enter his presence. We are not gods. We are not goddesses. We are not deity. We are redeemed children of our Father, and as his children we are heirs and joint heirs with Christ.


Gene Hamilton said...


Great post on "the Hand". I remember so well your father using John 10:28,29 to frame the security of the believer. He would say that we Christians were secure in Christ's hand. Jesus' hand was secure in the Father's hand. So there we are, encapsulated in Christ's hand, that in turn is encapsulated in the Father's hand. Nothing can touch us! I'll bet he told you that one a time or two. I used "the Hand" in my Bible class last Sunday. Here's the close of my class. My text was Luke 5 on the calling of Matthew Levi:

The risen Jesus is coming to us, He’s coming right up to us just like old Matthew Levi sitting at his IRS desk. And Jesus is saying the same thing to us that He said to Matt, “Follow me”. Jesus is holding out His hand to us, that hand that still bears the nail scars, and He is saying, “Take my hand, and I will never let you go”.

Jesus referred to Himself as the good Shepherd and to us, his followers, as His sheep.

John 10:11 "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand."

Our destiny is in the hand of Jesus, God the Son. His hand is in the hand of God the Father. That nail-scared hand of Jesus holds us up, holds us securely, holds onto us every step of the way to His kingdom, and then will hold us for all eternity. Why would we want to be anywhere but in the hand of Jesus?

The lyrics of an old pop song from many years ago are still just as relevant today.

"Put your hand in the hand of the man who stilled the water
Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea
Take a look at yourself and you can look at others differently
By putting your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee."

How remarkable the Spirit has us talking about the same thing, at virtually the same time, in Minnesota and Florida? Thanks for letting me share this overlong gush.

Gene Hamilton
Orange Park, Fl.

9:50 PM  
Jill Martin Rische said...


Don't you just love it when God does things like this? It's such a wonderful confirmation of His love for us.

Nothing happens by chance, right?

Thanks so much for sharing your notes--it sounds like a great class.


10:17 PM  
Jill Martin Rische said...

Oh and I probably shouldn't admit this, but I remember that song . . . of course I was quite young at the time. :)

10:18 PM  
JohnD said...

The hands are the tools of the body. Where the feet are the navigation and symbolic of human life or the physical body, the hand is symbolic of relations (good or bad) and of security.

Dr. James Dobson once said his earliest memory was calling to his daddy in the nights darkness from his crib next to his parent's bed reaching his hand out into the darkness... feeling his father's hand reach out to take his and in a moment he was fast asleep.

When you see lovers young and old and all points in between walking hand in hand or sitting in Church holding hands or with a hand around a shoulder... it is a powerful testimony.

My wife recalls how her younger sister's little hands reminded her of how much she needed to take care of her. When they came to Christ as little girls in that big West Texas Church they walked down the aisle hand in hand.

I think of the hands of Jesus as the love he has for humanity spread out in love beckoning us into his arms... after being spread out on the cross to pay the price for our sin.

I think of it also as our identifying with him. He is the last Adam yet he is the prototype if you think about it. Know to the omniscient mind of the Creator what form he would take as a man himself when he fashioned the first Adam. So in a real sense, our very humanity is the way we are created in the image of God (the Son).

4:51 AM  

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