‘And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.’
I Timothy 3:16
Did you ever think that 1 Timothy 3:16 could be so deep? Great is the mystery of godliness. These truths unpack such a powerful meaning into our lives.
Just as God was manifested in the flesh through the person of Jesus Christ, He was also justified in the Spirit. Not because He was sinful and then made righteous, but that He was declared to be justified by the Holy Spirit. There are two passages of Scripture that shed light upon this truth.
At Jesus’ baptism, Matthew tells us, ‘When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”’ Matthew 3:16-17
At the resurrection of Jesus, Luke records, ‘This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear.’ Acts 2:32-33
Jesus was declared to be righteous and holy by the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the Trinity. He always was justified before the Father. He didn’t have to prove Himself righteous; He always was righteous. Therefore He rightly took our place on the cross and provided salvation to all who believe.
Lord, thank You for revealing the truth of the gospel to me and opening my eyes to Your great salvation plan. You alone are God and able to save. I pray that I may show the love of Christ in all that I say and do.