Blessings in The Father’s Love!
Father Facts from John
As we celebrate Father’s Day this year, our thoughts focus not only on our earthly fathers, but on our Heavenly Father. He is the only Perfect Father. No matter how loving, encouraging, affirming, wise or wonderful our earthly fathers may have been, they are a “type and shadow” of a far greater Father, the One who is Love—the One who knew us in our mother’s womb (Ps. 139:13).
The Ruach HaKodesh led us to look into the Gospels to see what they have to say about God as Father. We were excited, but not surprised, to find that God as Father is mentioned more in the Gospel of John than in any of the other three Gospels. In fact: Matthew (40x), Mark (5x), Luke (14x), and John (97x). John brings us into the deep love relationship between the Father and Yeshua. This reaches a climax in chapters 14 through 17, where almost half of the verses about The Father in John are found. These chapters cover Yeshua’s last hours on earth, where He is focusing on returning to The Father.
We invite you to join us on a journey this month as we seek to get to know The Father better. John, the disciple whom Yeshua loved (John 21:20), reveals much about Him. These are facts—meant to encourage and edify you—and let you know that YOU have the very best Father!
The Father is our Destination
The Messiah said to Thomas (John 14:6), “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” “I am the way” is “Ani haderech” (an-NEE ha-DEH-reck) in Hebrew. If there is a way, there must be a destination! Yeshua came to lead us to The Father. The goal is intimacy with God the Father. We go to the Father through the Son. We generally pray to “Avinu, Shebashamayim,” our Father in Heaven, in the Name of Yeshua. He told His talmidim, “…whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you” (John 16:23). Because of Yeshua, we can call God “Abba,” “Daddy.” The rabbi and his family who lived with us on the beach in the 1970’s found this hard to believe. God as “Abba”? Yes! The Son makes this relationship possible.
The Father has a House
A father, in biblical thought, is the leader of a house. He is the strength of his family, the “baal” (literally lord), and the one responsible for the family’s spiritual health and well-being. The Hebrew word for father is “av” (אב). The ancient Hebrew word picture for “av” shows that a father is the leader of his house (bet ב). In today’s Judaism, alef (א) symbolizes the One and Only Omnipotent God, and is related to “aluf” which means “master.” Therefore, God is Master of His house.
What house? In John chapter 2 we see Yeshua, before the Passover, driving corrupt money changers out of His Father’s house—the Temple in Jerusalem (verses14-17). This temple was supposed to be a holy place, dedicated to the worship of God the Father, where the presence of God dwelt. There is no “Temple” in Jerusalem today. The last one was destroyed by the Romans in 70 A.D. The Ruach HaKodesh, the Spirit of God, dwells today in a different kind of house: the human body. Us! We are God’s house, His temple, His dwelling place on earth. “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” (1 Corinthians 3:16) What an awesome privilege. God’s Holy Presence lives inside each born again child of The Father. Yeshua spoke of this in John 14:23: “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.”
But there is another House of God—in the heavenlies. Once we leave this earthly temple (our body) behind, we have a special house awaiting us. Yeshua spoke about this right before He left to begin working on our bridal chamber! “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2) No matter what type of house or dwelling you live in now, YOU have a magnificent house awaiting you in heaven. (Jamie is sure that her heavenly house is made of seashells.)
The Father Seeks Worshipers
“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.” (John 4:23) Yeshua spoke these words to a woman of Samaria whom He encountered at a well. Note that God the Father is SEEKING worshipers. May He find them in each one of us! Our Father is worthy of praise, of worship, of being glorified in and through us. Since Yeshua, His Son, is the truth, when we worship “in Yeshua,” we are worshiping in truth. Worshiping “in spirit” is worshiping with the renewed heart and mind, allowing the spirit within us to connect with God’s holy presence. It is prayer that magnifies the Creator. It is blessing the Blesser. Loving the Lover. Lifting up the Lifter. Giving of ourselves to the Giver.
The Father Keeps Working
Fact: Our Father never sleeps. “Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” (Psalms 121:4) This is very good news for both Israel and the Church. We have a Father who labors on our behalf 24/7. But unlike some earthly fathers who are workaholics, neglecting or ignoring their children because of their work, our Father can do both: work and care for us at the same time. Actually, His major work is caring for us!
When Yeshua healed a man on Shabbat, telling him to take up his bed and walk, the Judeans sought to kill Him. Yeshua said to them, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working” (John 5:17). Yes—working on the Shabbat—if it meant showing love and mercy and healing the sick.
The Father Sent Yeshua
There are more verses about the fact that God the Father SENT Yeshua than any other “Father fact.” God the Father has sent the Messiah. He came, and He is coming again (John 5:36-37, 5:43, 6:57, 8:16, 8:18, 8:29, 8:42, 10:36, 12:49, 14:24, 16:28, 17:25, and 20:21. There may be more…)! Consider just a few of these verses: “And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me” (John 5:37). “As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me.” (John 6:57) “I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me.” (John 8:18) “And He who sent Me is with Me.” (John 8:29a) Yeshua said to a group of Judeans, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me” (John 8:42).
In His final address to His talmidim, Yeshua emphasizes this fact. “I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.” (John 16:28) “O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me.” (John 17:25)
The Father Loves and Honors the Son
In the natural, it is a beautiful thing to see a close, loving father-son relationship. We are blessed to have two sons who deeply love and respect their father. He has set an example of unselfishness and sacrificial, unconditional love, that accurately models a Father who made the greatest sacrifice by giving up His only Son to save sinful human beings.
“The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand.” (John 3:35) “For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does…” (Jn 5:20) When challenged by the Judeans, Yeshua replied, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God” (John 8:54).
Yeshua, desiring to reach both Jewish and Gentile sheep, so that there will be one flock and one Shepherd, expresses the Father’s pleasure with His willingness to die to make this a reality: “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again” (John 10:16-17).
The love of the Father for the Son is from everlasting to everlasting. Yeshua, in His glorious high-priestly prayer of John 17, expresses the love and oneness that He had with His Father: “I in them, and You in Me; that they [the followers of Yeshua] 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. Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world” (John 17:23-24).
The Father is One with the Son
This is a mystery. God is One. But even traditional rabbis such as Daniel Boyarin (a prominent rabbinic scholar) are coming to the conclusion that Judaism of the first century allowed for a “Son of Man” figure who was divine and a part of God! Rabbi Boyarin postulates that both the Trinity and the Incarnation are Jewish ideas, even going back to before the time of Yeshua. His book is a fascinating read! You can order one this month.
We believe what the Word of God says. Consider the following statements of Yeshua: “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30). “If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.” (John 10:37-38) “…The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.” (John 14:10)
Yeshua also said, “At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you” (John 14:20). Do you believe that YOU are in Yeshua, and that YESHUA is in you? If you are a follower of Yeshua, Jesus, you should. This applies to you. But in the same way that we can’t figure out with our natural minds how Yeshua can be in all of us—by His Spirit—at the same time, we accept this reality by faith. The experience of God’s presence in our lives confirms this fact. If we know that we are one with Yeshua, we know that Yeshua can be One with the Father.
The Father Willed the Son’s Death
This is a hard, but important fact. No one killed Yeshua. The ancient charge of deicide against the Jews is totally unfounded, erroneous, and unbiblical. It was God the Father’s plan to have His Son die as the final sacrifice for sin. John 3:16 is a well-known verse that explains the Father’s motive in sending His Son to earth to die: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Yeshua, the Messiah, chose to submit to His Father’s will in going to the cross. He said to Peter in the Garden of Gethsemane, “Shall I not drink the cup which My Father has given Me?” (John 18:11).
The Father Sends the Holy Spirit
Last month we celebrated the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai, and the giving of the Ruach HaKodesh in the Upper Room on the same Feast—Shavuot or Pentecost. Just as the Father gave the Law, He gave the Spirit, so that the Law would be engraved on our hearts. This is the Brit Hadasha (Jer. 31:31-34), the New Covenant, given to us by the Father, through the Son.
Yeshua mentioned the gift that His Father would send after He departed: “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:26). And again, “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me” (John 15:26).
The Father Judges No One
This is an interesting fact. Even Michelangelo depicts “The Judgment” on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, with Jesus, as a very large, imposing figure, sitting in the middle between Heaven and Hell. God has given all judgment into the hands of the Son. “For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father…” (Jn 5:22-23)
The Father Gives Us to Yeshua
God is a Matchmaker! In US He has found a bride for His Son. Yeshua confirms this fact: “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out” (John 6:37). “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him…” (John 6:44) Referring to His own sheep, Yeshua said, “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand” (John 10:29). Yeshua prayed, “…Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are” (John 17:11).
The Father Loves Us!
Last, but not least, is the fabulous, phenomenal fact, that the Father is crazy about us—His children—the ones who have become part of His family through receiving His Son (John 1:12-13). Yeshua reassured His talmidim of the Father’s love for them: “for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God” (John 16:27).
God, the Father, not only loves the “world,” He loves YOU! He is profoundly pleased that we love His Son and choose to follow Him. His sacrifice has not been in vain! God is love. It is His very nature. We don’t have to do anything to get Him to love us, but His heart is actually pleased when we put our faith and trust in Yeshua. The Hebrew word for love—ahav (אהב), is made up of the word for father—av (אב)—with another letter in the middle. That letter, hey (ה), is the Hebrew letter of divinity and revelation. What is love?—the Father’s heart revealed.
God the Father’s love is the theme of Temple Aron HaKodesh’s 2015 Women’s Retreat to be held at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort in Naples, Florida from July 25 through July 27. Jamie is the speaker for the entire retreat. She is believing God that every woman who attends will experience the “extravagant love” of the Father. Every spirit of rejection will flee. Fear will be cast out by the perfect love of the Father. All ladies are invited. If interested, please call Sandra for details 954-804-5392.
Love in the Perfect Father,