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What Manner of Man

(A weekly program for knowing and following Jesus Christ)

By Richard and Linda Eyre


One of my favorite sacrament hymns that we don’t sing often enough goes:

When in the wondrous realms above
Our Savior had been called up,
To save the world of sin by love,
He said, “Thy will, O Lord, be done.”

The King of kings left worlds of light,
Became the meek and holy one;
In brightest day or darkest night
He said, “Thy will, O Lord, be done.”

No crown of thorns, no cruel cross
Could make our great Redeemer shun.
He counted his own will but loss,
And said, “Thy will, O Lord, be done.”

We take the bread and cup this day,
In memory of the Sinless One,
And pray for strength, that we may say,
As he, “Thy will, O Lord, be done.”
(Hymns, no. 199)

The first words that scripture ascribes to Jesus Christ are “Father, thy will be done” (Moses 4:1-2). The first words recorded in his mortal lifetime are: “How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49). Among the last recorded words he uttered in Gethsemane were: “Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matthew 26:39). The last words of his mortal life were: “It is finished” (referring to his completion of the Father’s will; John 19:30).

His first recorded statement after his resurrection was an admonition not to touch him until he had returned to the Father—whose will he had done (see John 20:17). The last words before his final ascension urged in effect that his disciples do the Father’s will as he had (Matthew 28:19-20).

Since Christ’s loyalty sprang from love, it is not surprising that the “apostle of love,” John, mentioned most often Jesus’ loyalty to the Father (see John 4:34, 5:19, 5:30, 7:16-18, 8:28-29, 10:29-30, 11:42, 12:26-28, 12:44-49, 13:16, 14:28-31, 15:8, 17:1, 18:11).

His challenge to us, as always, was to do as he had done: to “do the will of him that sent me” (John 4:34). And his promise, clarion clear, is the greatest promise of the greatest joy: “For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother” (Mark 3:35).

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