"This is the reason why the Father loves me—that I lay down my life, and I lay it down to take it up again! No one is taking it from me, but I lay it down of my own free will. I have the power to lay it down and I have the power to take it up again. This is an order that I have received from my Father.” John 10
Theologically, there is so much going on in these sentences that it hurts your brain if you stop and really give your thoughts to it. Let me prove it to you.
At the Creation of man, Adam and Eve walked perfect and perfectly with God; they lived effortlessly in the center and enjoyment of the Father's will. It didn't occur to them, until it was suggested to them by Satan, that their self-will might have any interest for them. But, in their exerting it against God, they Fell and were now forever Fallen. The constant presence of the imperfect self-will was upon them; that was Sin.
Then, at some point in what we call time, Jesus given an "order" from the Father that it would be His job to wage war upon the self-will, Sin and Satan. His weapon? To rob sin of its power by, everyday, every minute of every day, denying the self and walking in the exact will of His Father. He plainly says this in John 6:38 - "For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of Him who sent me." And do you understand that He understood this to absolutely include the death it would cost Him?
Hence the Cross being the world's most glorious moment as His "authority" to lay down His life perfectly meets the Father's will to redeem mankind. That was Jesus' most powerful act of self-abandonment.
But do you also understand that Jesus was not externally raised-from-the-dead, like when He raises Lazarus, but that it was His own authority, His own expression of His own will, that would cause Him to "take up" His life again?
The Cross was the final abandonment of His self-will; the Resurrection was the most complete exertion of self-will in all human history. That Friday and Sunday gave birth to a new sort of human will: a will totally redeemed from the self and Sin.
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