"These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said,
Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify
thee" JOH 17:1.
In that hour He was betrayed, forsaken, denied, blasphemed, and He was
crucified. Sometimes it is hard for us to realize who did this to Him.
If you and I have part in the sufferings of Christ and in His
resurrection, then we are the ones who crucified Him. He came to atone
for our sins. It was our sins that nailed Him to the tree.
This hour was predestined by the Father in the stillness of eternity, in
the covenant of peace. TIT 1:2 says, "In hope of eternal life, which
God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began." This hour was
the foundation of all promises.
We read in 2TI 1:9, "Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy
calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose
and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began."
No human mind can begin to fathom the eternal love of the Father toward
His chosen children of grace. That hour of perfect obedience by His only
begotten Son unto death, even the death of the cross, was ever before
the Father from eternity. Had it not been for these covenant promises
that the Father and the Son had covenanted, and that that hour of
redemption had been established, Adam would have sunk eternally into
hell the instant that he sinned. However, the love of the Father was so
great that He predetermined this hour that He would give His only
begotten Son, that He would restrain His own love that He had for His
Son. This was not done impulsively. This was ever before the Father from
before the foundation of the world.
The names of His chosen people are "written in the book of life of the
Lamb slain from the foundation of the world" as it says in REV 18:8. The
Father's eye was looking on that atonement of His own Son when He wrote
our names in the book of life.
For four thousand years this hour was ever before the Father in the way
of the sacrifices, burnt offerings that typified the sacrifice of
Christ, and the covenant of circumcision, assuring the pledge of the
Lord Jesus Christ that He would come with His perfect obedience unto
death, even the death of the cross. He would become a debtor to obey the
whole law for His church. As it says in 2PE 3:8, "But, beloved, be not
ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand
years, and a thousand years as one day."
If you were sentenced to die, and that sentence would be carried out in
thirty days, think how you would start counting down. First, you count
the days, then when the day arrives, you count the hours. Can you
imagine how the agony intensified as the hour drew near? For four
thousand years the Father watched the time count down to come to that
predetermined hour. The Lord Jesus Christ was sent. He was born of a
woman. Every year He was one year closer, but now it is coming to the
day and the hour. As that hour approached, our Savior went to the Garden
of Gethsemane and prayed in agony to the Father.
No man, nor Satan, nor all the forces of hell could have any power
against the Lord Jesus until the Father's appointed hour. He lived for
thirty years, then He had His ministry. There were many attempts on His
life. JOH 7:30 says, "Then they sought to take him: but no man laid
hands on him, because his hour was not yet come." The Father had
predetermined an exact time for this event, the exact place, and the
instruments He would use to bring about that event. In the Father's
predestining decrees, He predetermined who would bring His Son to the
In our lives we so often lose sight of this. The Lord has an instrument
that He uses to bring some affliction upon us, a trial of our faith,
some portion that we would least expect. The Lord used the chief
priests, those of the highest religious office, to bring Christ to this
hour. This did not cause our Saviour to murmur because He saw that the
Father had put this in His cup. He saw that all the dregs of His
Father's wrath against the church were in His cup to drink. He left
removal of this cup in submission to His Father. When the Lord brings
trials upon us, we must realize that it is from His hand and His
But when His hour was come, all the powers of hell were turned loose
against Him. LUK 22:53 says, "When I was daily with you in the temple,
ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the
power of darkness." This is the hour that the Lord had predetermined to
give them power over Him that He would die in weakness, in His human
nature. The Lord removed His hedge, and in His human nature He became as
weak as a man. The Lord allowed the chief priests and the Roman soldiers
to prevail over Him because that was the hour that He decreed from
eternity. Verse 54 says, "Then took they him, and led him, and brought
him into the high priest's house. And Peter followed afar off." He went
to be condemned to death in the high priest's house.
As we are adopted into the family of God in Christ, we learn to
understand that we will fellowship in His sufferings as well as in His
glory. Every calamity or affliction we suffer is ordained of the Lord.
We see this in 1TH 3:3. "That no man should be moved by these
afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto." We
must see any affliction that we suffer in the same light that the Lord
Jesus saw them, and that is, that that hour of affliction has been
appointed unto us by the Lord.