John Calvin describes Jesus weeping over Jerusalem and the apparent quandary that weeping over something he could remedy as being disingenuous by stating that Jesus, in a very real way, desired that all of the elect would experience the “fruit of the redemption.” Did Jesus weep over the elect being lost? In a way, yes. Election, in its general sense, refers to all of Israel. Jesus desired that all Israel would receive him, but they didn’t. This is the cause for Jesus’ sincere and genuine lament. This is no fake lament over people who rejected him because of a prior decree in reprobation. Jesus sees the rejection of His people and weeps over it. That is it. Calvin states:
As to those who think it strange that Christ should bewail an evil which he had it in his power to remedy, this difficulty is quickly removed. For as he came down from heaven, that, clothed in human flesh, he might be the witness and minister of the salvation which comes from God, so he actually took upon him human feelings, as far as the office which he had undertaken allowed. And it is necessary that we should always give due consideration to the character which he sustains, when he speaks, or when he is employed in accomplishing the salvation of men; as in this passage, in order that he may execute faithfully his Father’s commission, he must necessarily desire that the fruit of the redemption should come to the whole body of the elect people. Since, therefore, he was given to this people as a minister for salvation, it is in accordance with the nature of his office that he should deplore its destruction. He was God, I acknowledge; but on all occasions when it was necessary that he should perform the office of teacher, his divinity rested, and was in a manner concealed, that it might not hinder what belonged to him as Mediator. By this weeping he proved not only that he loved, like a brother, those for whose sake he became man, but also that God made to flow into human nature the Spirit of fatherly love.
© 2013, Rick Hogaboam. All rights reserved.