The foreknowledge of the Lord continued.
From a human point of view, Jesus could have done better for Himself. He could have appeased the leaders and remained a good teacher and healer among the nations. He could have negotiated with the Romans ( like Herod ) and established himself with political power. He could have quietly written his new philosophy on scrolls that might be distributed to the ends of the earth. But no, He goes ahead, knowing that ‘disaster’ awaited Him!
This is where His foreknowledge is most significant – proclaiming eternally that His death was not an accident, not a martyrs death, not a foolish miscalculation of popular opinion etc. On the road to Emmaus He told the puzzled walkers, ‘All that the prophets have spoken - that Christ must suffer and rise again from the dead.’
Let us ponder the many foretellings in Luke 22,23
· *The Passover night He said “ I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover before I suffer” . Suffer? To illustrate what He meant, He took the bread and broke it – symbolizing that His body would be broken. He then took the cup – interpreting this Himself – His blood shed as a ransom, shed to seal the covenant of grace soon to be established, shed to bring forgiveness . Just as He intelligently took the bread and the cup to signify His death as having special and eternal meaning, so should we eat intelligently (1 Corinthians 11 ).
· * Next the Lord foretells the impending betrayal by one of the twelve.
· * Luke 22.28-30 is an intriguing prophetic promise to the eleven disciples who had been faithful to Him. He promised to them in the Kingdom to come, thrones of authority to judge the twelve tribes of Israel ! What a promise when everything seemed to be crashing around them. Did He KNOW something more than the present ?? Indeed He did !!
· * He returns to the present burdens and expresses in advance the anticipated grief of Peter’s denial “you will deny three times that you know me”
· * Now notice a most important foretelling – 22.37 “this scripture must be fulfilled in me – He was numbered with the transgressors” The Lord is claiming that Isaiah 53.12 would be distinctly fulfilled in His ‘suffering’. As it turned out, it was precisely so, but in no sense engineered by Jesus. He seemed to KNOW what Pilate would do!
· * In Gethsemane, He is burdened with grief and anxiety because He KNEW the cup of suffering He must drink.
· * Verse 53 He describes this moment of assault as “ you hour and the power of darkness” – deeper forces at work than appeared on the surface.
· *When the Lord stands before the Sanhedrin court, He makes a prophetic claim that is pivotal for all mankind. The High Priest asks Him “Are you the Son of God” His answer this time is direct and clear “ I am “ (Mark 14.62). Those who accept this claim are truly His disciples, those who reject this claim are lost forever. But more astounding is the added sentence. “ From now on the Son of Man shall be seated at the right hand of the power of God” The Lord is alluding to Daniel 7, and claiming that He KNEW His place in the future as the designated Messiah and ruler of all !!!
We would do well to pause and worship HIM.
· * Luke includes another interesting case of foretelling – Chapter 23.28 “The days are coming..................” How did He KNOW the future of the nation of Israel? – He knew that in rejecting Him, they would invoke the judgement of God.
· * Yet another look ahead. To the repentant thief He said “Today you will be with me in paradise” This was not hopeful wishing, but the right of the Redeemer to open the door of heaven to a found sheep.
We see so many varied expressions of His omniscience i.e. He who KNEW all things could so humbly declare Himself the Christ, the Son of God.
I have not included the many foretellings from John 13-17. I encourage you to search them out. Please note the concluding word John16.30 “Now we know that you know all things and do not need anyone to question you. This is why we believe that you came from God”
May all my readers believe and be blessed.