“Before The Rooster Crows” ( Matthew 26: 75, HCSB ) by Carley Evans

God is in control. Foreknowledge without changing that which one knows is synonymous with control. God has not set the universe in motion only to sit back and watch in bewilderment to see what may or may not happen. Rather God knows exactly what is to happen, when it is to happen, and why it is to happen.

Jesus knows His crucifixion is coming. He even tells His disciples the details. Jesus also knows that “before the rooster crows” His friend Peter will deny even knowing Him three times. He knows Judas is the man to betray Him, saying, “I assure you: One of you will betray Me.” (Matthew 26:21) Jesus even knows the details of this betrayal long before they occur. He knows Judas is offered thirty pieces of silver; He knows Peter is to threaten the guard with a sword; He knows Judas is to kiss Him. Jesus knows He is to pray for deliverance from the horror of the cross, and sweat great drops of blood before He submits to His Father’s will.

Jesus – who is God the Son – does not change any of these events. Neither are the details altered.

Moments do exist in which Jesus appears to not know what is happening — one example is the woman who touches the edge of His robe so as to be healed. Jesus is aware power has gone out from Him, but He searches the great crowd to discover who has touched Him. Another example — Jesus sees the fig tree from a distance, goes to it, discovers no fruit and curses the tree. He appears to be unaware that the fig tree is barren.

I do think this lack of knowledge on Jesus’ part is just an appearance of ignorance. He wants the crowd to realize the woman is healed; He wants His disciples to know the reason He curses the fig tree. He must lightly feign surprise, curiosity, a lack of foreknowledge.

Jesus obviously chooses to limit His power, but He does not limit His full awareness of past, present, future. He knows. And because He knows all, He controls all. Jesus tells Pilate the truth when He says “You would have no authority over Me at all, if it hadn’t been given you from above.” (John 19:13)

“You say to me, therefore, ‘Why then does He still find fault? For who can resist His will? But who are you, a mere man, to talk back to God?” (Romans 9:19-20)

“One Who Is Ruler In Israel” (Luke 2: 1, 4 – 5; ESV) by Carley Evans

Close to Mary’s ninth month of pregnancy, Caesar Augustus conducts a world census. “And all go to be registered, each to his own town.” (Luke 2: 3) Because he is of the house of David, Joseph takes Mary from his home in Nazareth to Bethlehem, known as the city of David.

“But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for Me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days. Therefore He shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of His brothers shall return to the people of Israel. And He shall stand and shepherd His flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the Name of the Lord His God. And they shall dwell secure, for now He shall be great to the ends of the earth. And He shall be their peace.” (Micah 5: 2 – 5)

While in Bethlehem, Mary goes into labor and gives birth to a son — a son whom Pontius Pilate labels atop a wooden cross: “The King of the Jews.”