III. DEPENDENCE (John 5:30)
[Christ declared] “I can of my own self do nothing.” In other words, Jesus took the place of dependence which Adam refused to take. The words in Psalm 40:6 (R.V.margin) are applied to Him in the Hebrews letter. “thou hast no delight in; mine ears hast thou pierced for me.” The reference here is to Exodus 21:5, 6, where the love-slave, refusing his proffered freedom, had his ears pierced, and was for a few moments held by an awl, through those pierced ears, to the door-post of his master’s house. “I love my master,” he said, “I will not go out free”; and the ears fastened to the door-post indicated this willing bondage and identity of interest with those of his master.
Even so, Jesus refused to allow any of His powers for a single instant to go out free [Phil. 2:5-11]. That would have been an assertion of His independence, with its consequent penalty of death for His own sin. Satan tried again and again to tempt Him to assert His own powers. Let your powers go out free,” he said; “make these stones into bread to satisfy your hunger” [Matt. 4:3] But Jesus disowned all power of a self-originating life. He never tried to act independently. He just hung on His Father, and said: “As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father; so he that eateth me, he also shall live because of me” (John 6:57 R.V.). What a suggestive study this is as revealed in the Gospel of John.
Nothing of Himself, John 5:19; 5:30; 8:28.
Never spoke of Himself, John 7:16; 8:38; 12:49.
Never wrought a miracle of Himself, John 5:36; 10:37, 38.
Was ever the Sent One, John 4:34; 5:24; 5:30; 9:4; 11:42; 12:44, 45.
Never used human judgment, John 5:30.
Not in the emergencies, not in the great crises, but in everything, we must cultivate the habit of dependence on Christ. Habitually recognize that He has undertaken the business of your life in all its departments; that there is not a difficulty that crops up but He has undertaken to carry you through it. He has become responsible, and only waits for you to use Him.
“To have Him and make use of Him,” says Bishop Moule, “is peace, and power, and purity. To do without Him is impossible; it is death. To use Him only partially is perpetual unrest and disappointment. He must be ‘all things in all things’; then there shall be a great calm within, and a great strength and great holiness with it, and at last an ‘appearing with Him in glory,’ to crown the process, and give it its development forever.”
Part 3 of 5 From Beyond Humiliation: The Way of the Cross, by John Gregory Mantle. Washington, D.C: Testimony Book Ministry, 1974. 8th edition, Chapter 16.
For further study on this issue’s theme, see Grace Note: How Did Jesus Do What he Did? https://gracenotebook.com/how-did-jesus-do-what-he-did/