Prince of Peace: From the Cradle to the Crown and Beyond
When our son, Matthew, was about 9 or 10 years old, he presented us with some drawings that showed a magnifying glass, a Sherlock Holmes-type of hat, and an empty box of chocolates. He was on a mission to find out what had happened to the chocolates that he expected to taste, and he advised us that he was 'looking for clues'. Sometimes we need to use our 'detective kits and thinking' to discover clues and truths about the Author and Finisher of our faith (Heb. 12:2).
Glimpses of Jesus' mission are seen throughout the Old and New Testaments, but we may miss them if we are not purposely looking for them. For example, we get a hint in Genesis 3:15, when God says to the serpent (satan), “I'm declaring war between you and the Woman, between your offspring and hers. He'll wound your head, you'll wound his heel.” We don't know at what point Jesus was aware of His mission. However, at the age of 12 when He remained at the Synagogue to talk with religious teachers, while His parents had to return to Jerusalem to locate Him, Jesus seemed surprised by their appearance and questions. He responded, “Why were you looking for me? Didn’t you know that I had to be here, dealing with the things of my Father?” But they had no idea what he was talking about,” (Lk. 2: 49-50, MSG).
Several years ago my chaplain-friend introduced me to the concept of “Personal Mission Statements” (PMS) and explained that everything we choose to do in life should support our goals, which stem from our PMS. For example, my PMS is the motto that The Salvation Army held, “Heart to God; Hand to Man.” So, much of my life has been spent in service to others. It's clear that Jesus had a PMS and that everything He chose to do supported His mission. I believe He stated His PMS very clearly, “For the Son of Man came to find and restore the lost,” (Lk. 19:10, MSG).
Jesus' mission hasn't changed; but after His resurrection He passed that mission onto His disciples and to subsequent disciples throughout the ages, including us. What is our mission? Matthew recorded it, “Then Jesus...said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age,” (Mat. 28: 17-20, NIV). Jesus had a plan to carry out His mission: Do we have a plan to carry out the mission that we received from Him?
Blessings & Peace
Elizabeth Hogan Hayduk
Former Salvation Army Officer