In today’s Gospel, from the dialogue between Jesus and the Jews who wanted to kill Him, we learn about how Jesus related to and interacted with His Father, as described in the Gospel of John, Chapter 5, verses 19 to 20:

Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, the Son can do nothing on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise. The Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing; and he will show him greater works than these, so that you will be astonished.” (John 5:19-20)

Jesus used the work model of the apprenticeship system of His time to clearly illustrate His identity. He identified Himself as the apprentice and the Father as the master. That was the manner in which Jesus used to interact and cooperate with the Father as He carried out His mission on earth.

First and foremost, it was stated that with His identity as the Son, what Jesus was supposed to do. We see that He demonstrated absolute obedience to the Father, as Jesus said, “The Son can do nothing on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise.”

Jesus has also revealed to us that whichever way the Father does, He would do the same. He would not take it upon Himself, handle the situation and act upon it His way.

Through imitating what the Father would do and how He would do it, the Son must trust completely and surrender Himself to the Father, that the Father knows best what the Son needs to do and how to do it to best align with the Father’s plan. As the Son and the apprentice, Jesus was willing to accept the authority and responsibilities that were bestowed on Him along with such identities and joyfully fulfilled the mission that God the Father has entrusted Him. He did it fairly and impartially, without conceit and diffidence.

Jesus’ words also show a deep and intimate relationship between the Father and the Son. Jesus spoke confidently, saying, “The Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing; and he will show him greater works than these.” This completely reveals the deep trust between the Father and the Son, as well as between the master and the apprentice. The master does not hesitate to demonstrate and pass on to the apprentice all the skills and abilities he possesses, so that the apprentice could inherit his skills and power.

Jesus even confidently described the miracles that the Heavenly Father would perform through Him, saying that the Father “will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be astonished.” Before these greater and more amazing things happened, Jesus had already declared that the Heavenly Father would certainly work through Jesus Himself to do greater things. God would share His glory with the Son unreservedly, rather than keeping it for Himself! This is the highest and most sublime expression of the relationship between Father and Son, and master and apprentice. Jesus’ words not only expressed His intimate relationship with the Heavenly Father, but also His willingness to cooperate with the Father’s will without any reservation, so that the Father’s will can be carried out on earth and in Jesus Himself.

This is also the best model that Jesus demonstrated to His disciples. Jesus desires that we could follow and learn from Him, so that we could be like Jesus. Even though He was limited by His humanity, He could still be focused, peaceful, confident and meticulously complete the important tasks that were entrusted to Him by the Heavenly Father even at times of extreme pain and hardship.

If there were no intimate relationship and unceasing collaboration between the Father and the Son, the mission of redeeming mankind, which was impossible for Jesus in His humanity, could not have been accomplished!

This also gives us, as the children of the Heavenly Father, great confidence. If we can focus on our relationship with the Father, and make fulfilling the Father’s will the most important goal in our lives, we, like Jesus, can successfully complete the mission entrusted to us by the Heavenly Father in our limited lifetime on earth! All of these are not due to our own ability, but through the great power that comes from the Heavenly Father.


Can you fully embrace your identity as a child in your relationship with the Heavenly Father? Are there any obstacles that you need to overcome?

Can you fully embrace your identity as an apprentice in carrying out the mission that was entrusted to you by the Heavenly Father? What obstacles do you need to overcome?

Do you believe wholeheartedly in your Heavenly Father, which in His role as the Father and the master, that He fully trusts us and desires to share His glory with us?

Today’s Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for revealing to me the relationship between You and the Father, and for showing me how You communicate and interact with the Father in order to have a close relationship with Him and be able to collaborate with Him unceasingly. Please let me see the true image and face of the Father through Your relationship with Him, so that I may fully cooperate with Him to live out the plan He has for me and give all glory to our Heavenly Father, just like You do.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

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