“And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself” (John 13:2-4).
That’s one of my favorite sentences in the whole Bible—especially because of the words sitting there in the middle of it:
Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God…
John, through those words, gives us something valuable and precious: a glance into the mind of Christ during His time on the earth. And it’s more than a snapshot of His thoughts—it was His motivation, His purpose, His drive. He and the Father had been setting up their plan since before the foundation of the earth, and in a few short hours, some of the most significant dominoes were going to fall, setting in motion events that the entire plan of God depended upon.
During those events, He knew where He had come from and where He was going. He knew what He was there to accomplish.
He knew it as He knelt down to wash the feet of those who had followed Him for three and a half years.
He knew it as He handed them the bread and the wine that symbolized what He was about to endure.
He knew it as a cabal of Pharisees and soldiers approached Him, His own treacherous disciple leading the group.
He knew it as crowds that had sung His praises just days ago now jeered at Him and mocked Him.
He knew it as soldiers pummeled Him, ripped the skin from His back with vicious implements of torture, and pressed a crown of thorns into His skull.
He knew it as they hammered nails into His limbs and hoisted Him up to die like a common criminal.
He knew it as His breathing forced His arms to pull against the nails that held Him in place and drag His shredded back against the wood of the cross.
He knew it even as He cried out in His agony, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?”
He had come from God. He was going to God. He had a purpose, and that purpose enabled Him to face everything that was coming. He could have refused; He could have turned and run; He could have called down twelve legions of angels and exacted His entirely justified vengeance in a fraction of a moment. But He didn’t. He stayed. He faced the dominoes as they fell, one by one, because He knew.
He knew where He came from. He knew where He was going. And He knew why He was doing it.
* * *
What about you? When the dominoes fall, when life pummels you, when God allows Satan to take his shots at you, what keeps you standing? What enables you to face the onslaught and hold your ground?
Do you know where you came from?
Do you know where you’re going?
Do you know why?
You, child of God, were drawn out of the darkness and filth of Satan’s present evil age. God chose you; He opened your eyes to His light. That’s where you came from. And you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the blood and in the name of the Son of God. With that cleansing came a destination and a purpose—as a child of God, you have a place in the Kingdom of God. Your older Brother went ahead to prepare it for you: “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:3).
Whatever this life throws at you, whatever you face on your journey through this temporary world, you know that there’s something more important ahead of you.
Dominoes are going to fall. Fine. Let them fall. But you, you know where you came from. You know where you’re going. And you know why.
March on, Christian soldier.
Until next time,