|Robert Houk Hitchcock|
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?
Our Lord, Jesus Christ, even at a young age, knew what he was doing. He was into the "family business." Most men go about seeking their own gain, and their own station in life, but the Son of God knew that he had a mission to accomplish, and that mission was his Father's business.
What kind of business was his Father into?
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
There you have the "Mission Statement" of the Father's business. He hath sent me. God sent Jesus Christ into the world with some well defined objectives:
Preach the gospel to the poor
Heal the brokenhearted
Preach deliverance to the captives
Recovering the sight to the blind
Set at liberty them that are bruised
That is what he set out to do, and that is what he did.
Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.
All men and all women have "meat" in this life, what it is that they seek and what it is that they live for. Some seek the "meat" of fortune, and some seek the "meat" of fame. Some seek the "meat" of education and intellect, and some seek the "meat" of physical fitness and athletic accomplishment. Everyone seeks something, everyone has their "meat" in life.
For the Lord Jesus Christ, his "meat" was to do the will of the Father and to go about the Father's business and to finish His work.
I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
In this endeavor to carry on the family business, there was also a keen recognition that Jesus Christ needed His Father in order to do so! "I can of mine own self do nothing.." That is a tremendously bold statement. For all those who are seeking to participate in the Father's business, it is worthy to note.
For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
Jesus Christ was born to do the Will of the Father. He had choices, but he made the right ones. He walked the Will of Him that sent him: to preach...to heal...to deliver...
Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.
The way in which God's mission for the Lord Jesus Christ could be carried out was simply to speak and to walk the Word of God. Jesus Christ was always meek to the Father; he depended upon God and the knowledge of God to carry out his mission.
For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.
The Word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword. So much more is accomplished by speaking the Word than by speaking or doing anything else. It was the Word that fueled the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, and it was the Word of God that was the basis of the Family business.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
Jesus Christ could say, "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father," because he was always about His Father's business. He spoke the words that God gave him. He did the works that the Father gave him. How much else is there to life than speaking and doing - than our words and our actions?
They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
Even as Jesus Christ was sent into the world to do the Family business, so also the born-again ones have been sent into the world to carry on the Family business. We have been set apart by the Word of God, and we have been sent into the world with the mission of carrying on the Family business.
These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
Before the day of Pentecost, those who remained faithful, the about 120, were with one accord in prayer and supplication. They were of one accord in carrying out the Family business, which at that time was to wait for the promise of the Father.
And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
When the day finally came for them to assume responsibility for the Family business, they (the 12) were of one accord and in one place. The place was the Temple and the day was the day of Pentecost. They were all filled with the holy spirit. They received the gift of holy spirit which would enable them to carry on the Family business. They were all filled, and they all spoke in tongues. It was the witness in the senses' world that they had received what God had promised man. Man was now reconciled to God and could once again be a part of His family!
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them
about three thousand souls.
And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
Those that receieved the Word of God and thus received the gift of holy spirit were once again of one accord. They, too, were about the Father's business:
Stedfast in the apostles' doctrine
Stedfast in fellowship one with another.
Stedfast in breaking of bread
Stedfast in prayers together.
All that believed were together and had all things common.
They sold their pluralities and through the church all needs were met.
They continued daily with one accord in the temple
They continued to break bread from house to house.
They continued to eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart.
They praised God and they "shared grace" with all the people.
And the Lord added to the church! That now became the Family business!!
Redemption was now complete. Salvation was now available. The gift of holy spirit was now available. The mission of the Family business was now to walk the Word and to win others to the Lord Jesus Christ.
And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.
And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.
Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.
The first century church embarked on their calling to carry out the Family business. They manifested great power and witnessed to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. They stood together spiritually, they stood together physically and they stood together materially. They were about the Father's business.
And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.
Despite all opposition to the contrary, despite the unfavorable "business climate," they continued to hold forth God's Word to carry on the Family business.
So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.
The first century church saw many victories in their carrying out of the Family business. In Ephesus, the pinnacle of the first century church was reached: "so mightily grew the Word of God and prevailed." That is the goal of the church: for the Word of God to grow and to prevail in our communities. Until the wonderful day of our gathering together unto him, we will also endeavor to carry on the Family business.
Jesus Christ knew at a young age that he must be about His father's business. And so he did. He preached deliverance to the captives and he recovered the sight of the blind. He sought not his own will, but the Will of the Father which had sent him. He spoke the Word that the Father gave him, and he did the Will of the Father and finished his work. He accomplished the full redemption of mankind by carrying on the Family business.
The church also has a mission: to stand with one accord
on the Word of God, to seek the Will of Him who has sent us; to study to
show ourselves approved unto God and to teach the Word of God to those
that hunger for it. Truly we are carrying on the Family business.