Our Scripture reading gives our Savior the title "Man of Sorrows." He is one who would be acquainted with grief (Isaiah 53:3). Yet, He would be a vessel of the Lord's pleasure and would experience satisfaction (Isaiah 53:10-11 cp. Jeremiah 9:23-24). We are instructed to expect sorrows and sufferings (Psalm 34:19; II Timothy 3:12). Yet, we are to contain them with joy and thankfulness (James 1:2-8; Philippians 2:17; 3:10; 4:4-7; Ephesians 5:20; I Thessalonians 5:18).
As we contemplate what it means to have a thankful spirit this Thanksgiving season, let's look at the paradox of Christ, the "Man of Sorrows" and His positive experience that He describes in John chapter seventeen.
The Man of Sorrows experienced joy - John 17:13
Doing the will of the Father brought joy and pleasure to the Son of God.
See John 4:34; 6:38; 8:28-29; 15:11; Hebrews 12:2 cp. Luke 10:21.
The Man of Sorrows experienced sanctification - John 17:16-21
Sanctification means that the Son of God was "set apart" / "separated" for God's holy purposes. He was sent into the world on a mission and was not at home with this world.
See John 1:9-10; 3:14-17; 7:7; 8:23-27; 9:39; 10:36; 15:18-21; 16:28, 33; 18:36-37; 20:21.
The Man of Sorrows experienced glory - John 17:22
The Glory of God is to manifest who God is and what He does (Exodus 33:17-19). The Son of God's life - His teachings, His miracles, the sacrifice of His life - all were calculated for God's glory. Though filled with sorrows and sufferings, Christ's life was glorious.
See John 2:11; 11:4; 7:16-18; 13:21-32.
See also Matthew 17:1-3 (note: we are but one step from unspeakable glory!)
The Man of Sorrows experienced love - John 17:23-26
All that the Son of God did, all that He endured - was motivated by love.
(John 13:1, 34; 14:31; 15:9-13)
Suffering is a gift, sanctified by God. It should be received in a spirit of thanks, praise, honor, glory, love, and joy (Matthew 5:10-12; II Corinthians 12:7-10; Philippians 1:27-30; I John 3:1).
||I Peter 1:2-9
I Peter 2:19-25
I Peter 3:10-18
I Peter 4:1-2, 7-14
I Peter 5:6-11