Sermons on John-Lowell Johnson | Rule Austin (2023)

A journey through the Gospel of John
Lowell Johnson


1. The Wonderful Gospel of John John 21:24-25; 20:30-31
2. Heaven came down John 1:1-5, 14, 18
3. When God became man John 1:10-14, 16-17
4. A man sent from God John 1:6-8, 15, 19-28
5. Alleluia, Praise the Lamb! John 1:29-34
6. The Man Other men follow John 1:35-51
7. The best is yet to come John 2:1-11
8. When God cleanses the house John 2:13-25
9. Nick in the night or what it really means to be saved John 3:1-10
10. Our Savior like a serpent John 3:14-15, Num. 21:4-9, Cor. 10:9 37
11. Love at first sight John 3:16
12. Make your choice John 3:16-21
13. The minister who lost his church John 3:22-36
14. The bad Samaritan John 4:1-30
15. It is harvest time John 4:31-42
16. A Portrait of Faith John 4:46-54
17. A Debunking of Legalism John 5:8-18
18. The miracle that resulted in Jesus being killed John 5:1-18
19. Christ's Claims to His Deity John 5:16-30
20. Evidence Requiring Judgment John 5:18, 31-47
21. Little is much when God is in it John 6:1-15
22. Fragments John 6:12-13
23. When the storms of life come John 6:15-21
24. Reasons for following Jesus John 6:22-36
25. Jesus: The Bread of Life John 6:22-36
26. Spiritual Apostasy John 6:60-71
27. Jesus: The Talk of the City John 7:1-15, 40-44
28. The joy of a flooded heart John 7:37-39
29. The Redemption of a Shady Lady John 8:1-11
30. Jesus: The Light of the World John 8:12
31. Life's greatest tragedy John 8:21–24
32. Like Father, Like Son John 8:31-59
33. O, what a savior John
34. I was once blind, but now I see John 9:1-12
35. Salvation: An Eye-Opening Experience John 9:8-25
36. Jesus: The Gateway to Glory John 10:1-10
37. The Heavenly Shepherd John 10:11, 14-15, 17-18, 27-30
38. The Sheep and the Shepherd John
39. The Eternal Security of the Believer John 10:27-30
40. Lazarus, come out! John 11:1-7, 11-15, 17-45
41. The Tears of Jesus John 11:32-36
42. A Portrait of Extravagant Worship John 12:1-11
43. A parade for Jesus John 12:12-19
44. Lord, we would see Jesus John 12:20-26
45. Jesus' Thoughts on the Way to the Cross John 12:27-32 Ps. 118:24
46. ​​A servant moment John 13:1-17
47. We need washed feet John 13:1-12
48. Wash each other's feet! John 13:12-17
49. Judas Iscariot: So near; Yet so far away John 13:16-30
50. Love one another John 13:34-35
51. A remedy for troubled hearts John 14:1-3
52. Is Jesus Christ the only way to heaven John 14:1-6
53. Power for ministry John 14:12-27
54. How to be a fruitful Christian John 15:1-11
55. Jesus: The best friend we can ever have John 15:12-17
56. Warning: Prepare for Persecution John 15:17-25; 16:1-4
57. The Crisis of Conviction John 16:7-14
58. The Advantage of the Holy Spirit John 15:26-27; 16:7, 12-15
59. Sorrow turned to joy and peace John 16:16-33
60. Greatest prayer ever prayed John 17:1-26
61. A look into the heart of Jesus John 17:1-5
62. What is eternal life? John 17:1-3
63. Jesus prays for our safety John 17:11-12,15
64. Jesus prays that we will be joyful John 17:13
65. Jesus prays that we will live holy lives John 17:14-16
66. Jesus prays for our sanctification John 17:17-19
67. Jesus prays for our unity John 17:20-22
68. Jesus prays for our homecoming John 17:24-26
69. Drinking the cup John 18:1-11
70. Malchus: The Last Miracle John 18:1-11
71. The man without blemish John 18:12-14, 19-24, 31-37
72. The Denial of Peter John 18:12-18, 25-27
73. Pilate vor Jesus John 18:28 - 19:16
74. The soldiers: add pain and shame John 19:1-3, 23-23, 31-37
75. Substitute for the substitute John 19:23-27
76. I am thirsty John 19:28-30
77. It is finished John 19:28-30
78. On the cross! John 19:16-37
79. The Burial of the Lord Jesus John 19:38-42
80. The Not Quite Empty Tomb John 20:1-18
81. The man who missed Sunday night Ser John 20:19-29
82. The true last words of Christ John 20-21
83. Breakfast with Jesus John 21:1-14
84. The supreme question of the Christian John 21:15-25
85. Lord, what about my brother? John 21:17-25
John’s Wonderful Gospel Johannes 21:24-25 Johannes 20:30-31

When you open your NT, the first four books are called "the Gospels."
-You will be first in the N.T. because they proclaim the person and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ.
-Jesus is the HEART of the Bible. Jesus is at the heart of the Bible. It is found on every page of Scripture. Somewhere in the shadow of every page of Scripture you will find Jesus.

Why are there FOUR gospels?
- One reason is that we may get a more complete view or picture of the Lord Jesus. If I had to take a picture of you and wanted to get the best understanding of what you look like, I would take a front view; then a side view; and then a view from behind.

Matthew describes Jesus as the son of David, the Messiah and the king of the Jews. He writes primarily for a Jewish audience. Its genealogy traces the genealogy of the Lord from Mary to Abraham. The key word in Matthew is "fulfilled" because the messianic prophecies were fulfilled in Jesus Christ. He gives the legal genealogy of Jesus.

Mark depicts the Lord Jesus as the suffering servant. His gospel begins with the public ministry of Christ. The keyword is "immediately" or "immediately". It is an action word that indicates immediate action. Mark always seemed to be in a hurry. It shows that Jesus does good and serves humanity. Its is a gospel of ACTS; No words. He tells what Jesus DID.

Luke was a doctor. It depicts Christ as the Son of Man and emphasizes Christ's humanity. He presents Jesus as a perfect man and contrasts Him with the sinful people of this world. He traces the genealogy of the Lord back to Adam and has the Gentile reader in mind.

The first three gospels describe EVENTS in the life of the Lord Jesus. John emphasizes the MEANING of EVENTS in the Gospels.

John represents and proclaims the divinity or deity of Jesus. It shows Jesus as the heavenly one who came down to earth; the Son of Heavenly Father becomes flesh and dwells among men. He proclaims that Jesus is the Son of God. He speaks of the eternity of Christ, who became Jesus of Nazareth.
-John proclaims the deity of Christ; yet he uses the human name Jesus more often than the other Gospel writers. Mark uses the name Jesus 13 times; Luke uses the name Jesus 88 times; Matthew uses the name Jesus 151 times, but John uses the name Jesus 247 times.

I. Who wrote the Gospel of John?

Now I know that on the surface that sounds a bit like asking, "Who is buried in Grant's tomb?" But actually there is much more for us to know about John than just the fact that his name is associated with this gospel connected is.
- Of course we know that the Holy Spirit was the spiritual author, but He always uses human instruments to do His work. So what do we know about John, the writer of the Gospels?

(1) The name "John" means "Yahweh is gracious".

John is usually referred to in the other gospels along with his brother as "James and John the son of Zebedee." James is most likely the older of the two, as it always records "James and John"; not "John and James".
- John was most likely the youngest of our Lord's twelve disciples, he was in his mid to late teens.
-John's father's name was Zebedee, a fisherman in Galilee; his mother's name was Salome, probably a sister of Mary, the mother of Jesus.
- Although the synoptic gospels mention the apostle John by name about twenty times, he is so humble that he avoids using his own personal name in his gospel. Instead, he identifies himself and the disciple "whom Jesus loved" five times (13:23; 19:26; 20:2; 21:7,20). If you see the name "John" in his gospel, it will be about John the Baptist.
-John writes as an eyewitness. He does not share second-hand information.
- John, along with Peter and James, formed the inner circle of our Lord. Three times we see her with our Lord: at the raising of Jairus' daughter, at the transfiguration, and in Gethsemane.

(2) John's position in the business

Before John met Jesus, he, his brother James, and their father Zebedee were fishermen in Galilee. They were partners in the fishing business with Peter and Andrew. Since they owned several boats and employed hired laborers, their fishing seems to provide them with a good income.
-Although he was most likely wealthy and had real security in the family fishing business, he never regretted giving up everything to follow Jesus.
-Everything changed when John came to Jesus and started following Jesus - his temper, his loyalty, his whole being - all because he started following Jesus closely.

(3) Johns Disposition

John and his brother James had a fiery disposition, so much so that our Lord nicknamed them the "sons of thunder" (Mark 3:17). They saw a demon cast out and he wasn't part of their group, so they wanted to ban him and tell him to stop. Then, at another time, some Samaritans would not receive her or her message, they would call down fire from heaven and roast her!

(4) John's loving admiration

Our Lord changed John's fighting, fiery disposition to one of love. In fact, our Lord so transformed him that in his old age he became known as an apostle of love.
- This is one of the reasons why Jesus entrusted Mary, His mother, to the care of John.

(5) John's personal persecution

John is the only one of our Lord's apostles who wasn't killed and they tried to kill John but God saved him.
- According to tradition, John was actually boiled alive in oil but miraculously survived despite being badly disfigured. Thereafter, John was exiled to the island of Patmos, where he received "The Revelation of Jesus Christ" about AD 95. He later returned to Ephesus
where he dies around AD 98
II. Why did John write his gospel?

The Gospel of John was the last of the Gospels, written somewhere between AD 85 and 90.
- Mark was written between 45-50 AD; Matthew was written around AD 50; Luke was written around AD 60 or 61.
-This means that John wrote his gospel about 30 years after the other gospel writer and about 50-60 years after the death of Christ.

So why did John write his gospel?

(1) John provided a great deal of unique material not recorded in the other gospels.

John does not repeat most of the material given by the other evangelists. In fact, John gives about 93 percent new material not found in the other gospels.
- John does not give the genealogy of our Lord, the nativity scene, His infancy, baptism, temptation, the mount of transfiguration or Gethsemane.
- There are no lepers, tax collectors, demoniacs or parables. Not because none of these things are important, but because they are not important to HIS purpose and others have already dealt with them.

(2) John often provides information that helps in understanding the events in the Synoptics.

The Synoptics begin with Jesus' ministry in Galilee. They imply that Jesus had a ministry before that, but say little about it.
John provides answers with information about Jesus' earlier ministry in Judea (chapter 3) and Samaria (chapter 4). So John wants to fill in the blanks about Jesus and clarify a few things.
- The other gospels mainly focus on the last year of Christ's ministry. John shows us events from all three years of Jesus' ministry.
- Even with this thought, John only deals with about 30 days of Jesus' ministry.

(3) John is the most theological of the gospels.

For example, John is more concerned with the work of the Holy Spirit than any other gospel.
- The claims that Jesus is God are explained more in John than in all the other gospels combined. You may have heard people say that Jesus never referred to himself as divine or as God. That is not true. Both he and others declare that Jesus is God.
● In John 1:32-34, John the Baptist declares that Jesus is God.
● In John 1:49, Nathanael explains that Jesus is God.
● In John 6:67-69, Peter explains that Jesus is the Son of God.
● In John 11:23-27, Martha explained that Jesus was the Son of God.
● In John 20:28 Thomas explains that Jesus is God.
● In John 20:31, John declares Jesus to be the Son of God.
● In John 10:36, Jesus declared that he was God.

John declared that Jesus is the Son of God and God is the Son!

Look back to John 20:30-31. The word "believe" occurs 99 times in the Gospel of John. The purpose of the gospel of John is for every human being to come by faith to believe that Jesus is the Christ so that they may have life in His name.

An unbeliever lectured in front of a large crowd and invited anyone who wished to come to the platform and ask him any question he had in mind. A man who had once been a notorious sinner but had recently been converted came onto the platform. He took an orange out of his pocket, peeled it and ate it, but didn't say a word. The disbeliever said, "Now what is your question?" The man asked the disbeliever whether the orange was sweet or sour.
The unbeliever stormed out, "How do I know if it's sweet or sour. I've never tried it!” “Then,” said the Christian, “how can you know anything about Christ unless you have tested him?”
I invite you to try it, to test it, to trust it. You will find Him sweet to your soul in this life and in the life to come.

O taste and see that the Lord is good!!

The sky came down
Johannes 1:1-5, 14, 18

The gospel of John begins with a truth that is ESSENTIAL to salvation.
- If what happened in these seven verses had not happened, none of us could be saved.
- Jesus had to become man before he could save or redeem mankind. God had to in some way become man and yet remain God before He could die as God-man on the cross so that He could forgive our sins.

Here's how salvation works:

● The Bible teaches that ALL people are sinful – Rom. 3:23
● Sin has consequences, and those consequences have a high price to pay—Rom. 6:23
● For man to be righteous before God, someone must pay the price
- You can pay the price yourself, but you have to go to hell and spend eternity there.
-OR, someone else could pay the price for you.

In order for someone else to pay the price for you, they must meet certain requirements.
● You cannot be a sinner. If you were a sinner, you would only die to pay for your own sins.
● If Jesus were without sin but just an ordinary man, could he die in your place? Yes. But He could only pay for one person's sins.
What could be done so that a sinless, perfect Jesus could die for the sins of the whole world?

- You see, because Adam and Eve disobeyed God's command, they plunged all of mankind into sin. Every person who is born on this earth to a sinful man and woman is born with a sinful nature. Anyone with a sinful nature cannot pay the price for another's sin. It would take someone without sin to pay the price.

God loves us and wanted to have a plan to save us. Here is that plan:
● For a sinless child to be born, there must be an immaculate woman—a virgin
● Then there must be a sinless father. You see, the sinful nature comes from man. It was Adam who sinned. No human could fulfill this requirement. So God the Father said, “Here is the only way to solve the great mystery: The Holy Spirit will overshadow a virgin, and instead of a child with a sinful nature growing up in the virgin’s womb, God’s holy, sinless nature will be implanted in her lap. The child that is born will be both God and man—the God-man.
● Isa. 9:6 “For unto us a CHILD is BORN (to Mary), unto us a SON is GIVEN (by the transmission of the Holy Spirit). And Jesus was born!

"Down from His glory, eternal history,
The great Creator came, and Jesus is his name!”

Why did Jesus have to come in the flesh as a God-man?

(1) The incarnation made death possible for Jesus—Heb. 10:4-7

God could not die; But the great mystery is that Godman could die for our sins.

(2) The incarnation has enabled Jesus to experience all that man has experienced - hunger, thirst, weariness, disappointments, injuries, problems, the pains of life - and so He is able to meet all of His own understand and help them and are so tempted—Hebrews 4:14-16
● Billy Graham was looking at an ant bed one day and wondered, “How can I communicate with these ants?” He thought, “The only way is to become one of them.” Jesus did that!

(3) In becoming man, Jesus gave us an example of how to live a life perfectly pleasing to the Father.

(4) Through the incarnation, God sanctified the worth and value of human life in a way that had not happened before.

God's Son, the Lord Jesus, is truly amazing!

Read the section

Three things I want to share with you from this passage about Jesus:

I. Jesus is the language of heaven—John 1:1-2, 14

how is god All we know about God is what he wants us to know about himself.
- But if you want to know what God is like, look at Jesus

A. Consider His person - John 1:1, 14

Have you noticed that the word WORD starts with a capital letter?
- Note 1 John 1:1; Revelation 19:13

Jesus is the communicating Word

The word "Word" is used in two different ways in relation to Jesus: the Bible is the written word about him and he is the living word.

A word - written or spoken - expresses the thoughts and thoughts of another.
-Jesus expressed the thoughts of God the Father. He reveals to us God's thoughts and expresses them.
- God spells Himself to man in a way that man can understand.

B. Consider His preexistence - John 1:1-2

The life of Jesus Christ did not begin with his birth in Bethlehem. It didn't even begin with His conception in Nazareth.

-It didn't start at all! The life of Jesus has not begun and has never begun, for he is eternal in heaven, the Ancient of days, without father or mother, without beginning or end.

What do the first three words of John 1:1 remind you of?
- Think about it: Genesis 1:1 moves forward in time. John 1:1 moves backwards in eternity.
-John 1:1 is actually the oldest verse in the Bible.

At John 1:1 the word “was” occurs three times. The word means continuous existence... “In the beginning, Jesus always existed. What does that mean? That means:

(1) Jesus coexists with the Father

Human language has a beginning and an end point.
God's language knows no beginning or end. it's forever

(2) Jesus is equal to the Father

The word "with God" means to be face to face; eye level. It refers to perfect communion in the Trinity.
-Gen. 1:26; Prov. 8:27-30

(3) Jesus is co-eternal with the Father

The word "was" is found again in 1:14, but it is a different word. The word here means "became".
- This does not mean that Jesus stopped being God to become man.
- It does not mean that something has been subtracted from Him in order that something might be added.
- It means that He was not only eternal God, but also became flesh and blood man.

It means that he participated in what we experienced:
● We get tired; He did it too - John 4 - He sat wearily by a well.
● We get thirsty; So he - Johannes19 - thirsted me.
● We die; So did He - John 20 - He died.

He became just like us, with one exception - we sin; He had no sin nature and no sin.
- Rom. 5:8
-John 1:18 - "He preached him." He helps us to see and understand him.

II. Jesus is the life of heaven - John 1:3-4

Jesus is the source of ALL things - Heb. 11:3; 1:1-2

He is the source of all life - physical life and spiritual life
-But SIN entered the world and humanity. Besides God there is death.
- Note John 1:4 In Him was life...Jesus brings life! John 10:10; Rome. 6:23; Col. 1:16-17

III. Jesus is the light of heaven - John 1:4-5

Gen. 1:1-3 When God created the heavens and the earth, we are next told that darkness lay over the deep. "Then God said: Let there be light, and there was light."

John speaks of the light of creation when it was filled with darkness; but there is also the light of consciousness in man who is born in moral darkness and spiritual darkness.
-No one is born an atheist. Man is born with a measure of light within him - Rom. 1:19
- Man says: "Somewhere there is a God." God says: "I am the light of the world."

Four words are repeated over and over again in the Gospel of John: That is interesting:

Life comes from God. When this life is revealed, it is revealed by its light. His light is revealed through His truth and love.
-What happens when the light goes on in our soul? When we respond to the light, we accept him by faith and he forgives us and saves us.
-But when the light goes on in a soul and you see it! You see what you are, a lost sinner, and you see what God has done in giving His Son for you. He wants to flood your soul with His light.

But not everyone accepts Jesus as Savior when the lights come on.
- John 1:5, 10-11 Why did they not receive him when they saw the light? John 3:19

There have been times when I've tried to win people to the Lord. They even come to the place where they pray and ask Jesus to come into their life. Then I ask her if Jesus has come into her heart. Has anything happened in your heart and life and they say no.

Why? The Bible says that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. I know God doesn't lie, so why haven't they experienced the saving grace of God?

I think it's due to one of two reasons:

1. Unbelief - You just don't have the faith to really believe that God will do what He says He will do.

2. They love their sin too much to give it up.

I believe this is by far the biggest reason people don't get saved.

Some say, “I don't accept Christ because I don't understand him.” No, you don't accept Jesus because you love the dark more than the light and if you accept Jesus you would have to change your way of life.
- You don't want Jesus to come into your life because His life and light reveals what is in the dark and when you are revealed you have to change.

When bugs and rats are exposed to the light, they run off and try to find the darkness again. They don't want to be exposed because they love the dark.
- Those who love the dark more than the light do not want to take responsibility for their sins.
Would you respond to God's light? Let His light shine in you and enlighten your soul.

When God became man
Johannes 1:10-14, 16-17

There are many mysteries in the Bible - things that are difficult to understand - but one of the greatest mysteries is what theologians call the incarnation of Jesus Christ... when God's Son became man.
-1. Timothy 3:16 "Mystery" is a term used by Paul to indicate the truth hidden in the OT. Alter and revealed in the N.T. Age.
● God's Eternal Son, Jesus Christ, became what he never was—flesh. This does not mean that He has ceased to be God. He continued to be God through and through, but God adjusted Himself to the conditions of human existence EXCEPT sin.
● God did not simply indwell a human being. He became flesh! Thus, in one statement, John confesses both the divinity and the humanity of Christ.

It is a great mystery that God created man in his own image. An even greater mystery, however, is that the sovereign God of heaven would take upon himself the image of earthly man.

And the incarnation took place when everything was just right for Him - the political world, the social world and the spiritual world - Gal. 4:4-5.

Notice Phil. 2:5-8 "He made no reputation" means that He "emptied himself," or laid aside and accepted His privileges—His heavenly glory, His independent authority, His divine privileges, and His eternal riches shape of man.
-But He never changed His Person! He was God forever; He was God in creation; He was God in every O.T. Epiphany; He was God in the womb of the Virgin Mary; He was God at His birth; He was God lying in a manger; He was God in life; He was God in death; and He was God in the resurrection.

-Jesus wasn't JUST LIKE GOD: He was God! Yes, he was like God, but he couldn't help but be like God. He was God Himself! He was one with the Father! (John 10:30; 17:22).
- In order for Him to become flesh, however, His divinity and manhood must become one in a special way.

This truth that Christ is both God and man is too great for our small minds to grasp, and too high for our lowly thoughts to reach. By faith we accept this mystery.
● Some say that Jesus wasn't really a man, he just looked like a man.
● Others say he had a man's body but no human soul.
● Others say that Jesus was two people in one body - sort of half god and half man.
- Nobody can explain how it happened; or even how God can become man without ceasing to be God. But that's what the Bible teaches.
-Let me be very clear. God's Son did not cease to be God when he became man. He added the masculinity, but he did not subtract the deity. He was fully God and fully man—the Godman. Jesus was God with skin!
● Col. 1:19 "It pleased the Father that all fullness should dwell in him."
● Col. 2:9 "In him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily."

I can imagine Jesus at the age of twelve sitting among the teachers of the Order, both listening and asking questions. I hear one of them ask Jesus: "How old are you?" He would answer:
● “Well, on my mother's side I'm twelve years old. But on my father's side I am older than my mother and the same age as my father, for before Abraham was I am.” So it was throughout the life of the Lord Jesus.

-On his mother's side he became thirsty and drank water from Jacob's well. On his father's side, he said, "I am the water of life."
-On his mother's side, he got hungry and ate food; On his father's side, he said, "I am the bread of life."
- On his mother's side he had neither money nor possessions; nowhere to lay his head; On his father's side he owns the cattle on ten thousand hills.
- At his mother's side he stood in front of the tomb of Lazarus and wept with great sadness; On His Father's side, He said, "Lazarus, come out," and Lazarus came back from the dead.
- On his mother's side, he grew weary and weary, falling under the weight of the old, sturdy cross; On his father's side, he carried all the sins of all people to that old tree.
-On his mother's side he was crucified and buried; He rose from the dead on his father's side.

I want you to see three things when our Lord became man:

I. Our Lord reveals

A. His tabernacle—John 1:14

Note the word "begotten." This word occurs three times in the NT. (John 1:18; 3:16).
- The word does not mean that the Father gave birth to the Son or brought him to life; Nor does it mean that the son is in the least inferior to the father.
- The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all equal in touching the Deity.
- The word “begotten” literally means “the only beloved; the one-of-a-kind or one-of-a-kind.” He is loved by his father and has a relationship with his father like no other.

"He dwelt among us"
● Eugene Peterson translates it this way: “The Word became flesh and went into the neighborhood.” Others say: “He pitched his tent among us.” “He dwelt among us.”
● He lived among us, worked among us, prayed among us, suffered among us and died among us.

That means he felt what we feel
● Jesus knew what it was like to be hungry; for forty days he went without food.
● He knew what it was like to be lonely and rejected. At a time when he needed company most, his friends ran away.
● He knew what it was like not to be recognized. He healed ten lepers at once and only one returned to thank him.
● He knew what it was like to be misunderstood, to stand at a friend's grave, to lose a loved one (Joseph), to face death.

He also faced what we face.
● Hebrews 4:15 - He was tempted in all the ways we are tempted to put His desires ahead of His Father's desires, to lash out in anger or bitterness, to lose faith in the midst of trials.

The truth is that Jesus not only faced the same temptations as we do, he faced much greater temptations than we do. We think he had an advantage because he became God and became man. We think that because he was without sin, he has no idea of ​​the struggles we face.
-He understands more than. The difference between Jesus and us is this: when we are tempted, we often give in. When Jesus was tempted, He resisted and resisted and resisted. He endured what we seldom do. He knew the FULL power of temptation.

B. Seine Manifestation – Johannes 1:14

"We saw His glory" Jesus flashed His glory when He was transfigured, and John was one of the few who actually saw Jesus' glory.

II. Our Lord refused - John 1:10-11

These are some of the saddest verses in the Bible. The word "receive" means "to receive".
-John 1:11, the first “His own” refers to the world of mankind in general, while the second “His own” refers to the Jewish nation.
- They didn't welcome Him because they didn't recognize Him.

His own should have known he was coming. God told them over and over again, many times in many ways. They had plenty of warning.
-Even some pagan astrologers found it out when they saw his star in the east (Matthew 2:1-5).
- Moses said, "He's coming." David said, "He's coming." Micah said, "He's coming." Daniel said, "He's coming." And when Jesus finally came, they didn't believe it. And some of them decided to kill him.

The crowd shouted, "We will not have this man ruling over us!" And they crucified him. Much of this rejection continues to this day.

III. Our Lord received - John 1:12-13

John 1:12 has rightly been considered one of the greatest verses in the entire NT. Because it tells us how to be saved.

Notice three key words in John 1:12:
A. Received

This word means to welcome a visitor into your house as a guest of honor and to have your heart made his home.
- It means being willing to let him into your life.


This word means "honor" or "privilege". The moment you accept Christ into your life, God gives you the honor of becoming a member of His family.
- God gives the privilege of being his children only to those who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior through personal faith.

C. Faith

That means more than just saying a prayer or signing a card. It means trusting him with all your heart and relying on him so completely that he is your only hope for heaven.

John 1:13 explains how we become children of God. There are three "nots" and one "but" - all four are important.

(1) Salvation is not by human lineage (not by blood)

Your family background does not count when it comes to salvation. Salvation is not hereditary. Just because your parents were Christians doesn't mean you are. Every man must trust Christ for himself. God has many children but no grandchildren. It's a personal thing between you and God.

(2) Salvation does not come by human desire (the will of the flesh)

There is nothing you can do to save yourself - not good deeds, church membership, money.

(3) Salvation is not of man's hand (nor of man's will)

Nothing man does to you or for you will bring you salvation. It's all from Jesus.

(4) But from God

Here is the heart of the gospel. Salvation is from the Lord. It is a free gift - all of grace.

The only question before us is, "Have you accepted Christ as your personal Lord and Savior?"
- “To all who accept Him” includes you. Won't you welcome Him into your heart?

Jesus must not only become a Savior...or The Savior...but MY Savior.

A man sent by God
Johannes 1:6-8, 15, 19-28

Jesus spoke very highly of John the Baptist. In fact, He praised him on three separate occasions.

(1) Matt. 11:11

"Among those born of women" - This is a large group...there is no greater man. John was a man!

(2) Lukas 7:24-28

There is no greater prophet than John the Baptist. This is our Lord's tribute to John.

(3) Johannes 5:35

John the Baptist was "a burning and shining light." When Jesus John the Baptist referred to a shining light, he was referring to the wick in the lamp...not the light, but the wick. A wick is only noticed when it is not working properly.
-The wick is hidden. It exists to be consumed. If it survives, it has served its purpose. John the Baptist said, "I am not the light, only the wick."

I draw your attention to one more passage: John 10:41-42
Everything John said about Jesus was true and many believed in Jesus.

Three things I want to say about John the Baptist:

I. John the Baptist: Man

A. He was born into a divine home - Luke 1:5-6

Both Zechariah and Elizabeth belonged to the priestly tribe. Even their names are significant. Zechariah means "Jehovah remembers". Elisabeth means “the oath of God”. God had solemnly sworn to send the Redeemer, and he remembered his oath.
- Zechariah was a priest and married a daughter of Aaron or the daughter of another priest. It was as if he were a preacher married to a preacher's daughter.
- In Luke 1:6 three things are said about them
● Both were righteous before God. They have been justified before God.
● Both walked in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord.
● Both were blameless before the Lord.

The only sorrow was that they had no children, and they made it a big matter of prayer. Elizabeth was of childbearing age, but God promised a miracle and John the Baptist was born.
- This is the kind of home that produces a John the Baptist.

B. He was a humble man—Mark 1:6-7; John 3:30

C. He was a brave man - Matt. 3:4-10; Mark 6:14-29

D. He was a forerunner of the Christ - Isa. 40:3-5

According to this passage, John had three jobs: to clear the way for the Lord, to prepare the way for the Lord, to get out of the way of the Lord.

II. John the Baptist: The Mission - John 1:6-8, 15

John the Baptist is referred to five times as a witness of Christ. Being a witness of Christ was John's primary calling.
- A witness should testify! A witness is one who is called to testify to what he has seen, heard, or known to be true, because he is speaking from personal knowledge and experience.

Did you know that if you are saved, redeemed, and cleansed by the blood of Christ, you must be a witness? Indeed, if you are saved, you are a witness. You can be a good witness or a bad witness, but you are a witness.

What does witnessing involve?

Is it just putting someone on the Roman road, or showing them the four spiritual laws, or giving them a tract of the gospel?
- These things may be a part of it, but there is so much more to it than that. It's about three things:

A. A public testimony

If we want to bear witness to Christ, we must go public. We can't be silent. There has to be some kind of public statement.

B. A competent testimony

A witness must speak from their own knowledge and experience. If you are saved, you can be a witness. Just tell me what happened to you personally.

C. A devotional testimony

The testimony translated into the Word is the Word from which we get our English word martyr. You support with your life what you testify to. You are risking your life in relation to what you have said about Christ.

What do you want your testimony to achieve? "That all men might believe through him." John 1:7

John was to prepare the way for Jesus. He was sent to prepare people to receive Christ.
- What we speak of Christ and how we speak of Christ should encourage people to believe in him.

John spoke of three things that Christ would do.

(1) Jesus will baptize you with the Holy Spirit - Matth. 3:11

John declares that the baptism administered by Christ was superior to the baptism administered by himself.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit could not take place until Christ had ascended, and it began at Pentecost.
-The baptism of the Spirit brings the believer into the body of Christ - 1 Cor. 12:13
-It also gives us absolute, lasting security of soul—Eph. 1:13-14; 4:30

(2) Jesus will execute judgment—John 5:26-27; Frosted. 3:11-12

Three types of baptism are mentioned in Matthew. 3:11-12
A. With water for repentance - the baptism of John symbolized purification
B. With the Spirit - to place believers in the body of Christ
C. With fire - speaks of a judgmental baptism upon the unrepentant.
All judgments were given to Jesus by His Father.

(3) Jesus' redemptive work as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

III. John the Baptist: The Message - Matthew 3:1-2

Repentance was the key tone of John's sermon. It was also the first message from Jesus. Regret!
- Repentance is the missing note in our day; and yet a man cannot enter heaven without truly repenting of his sins.

Divine repentance arises when the Holy Spirit convicts a person of their sins and there is genuine grief over their sins.
-It's more than regret because you got caught in your sin. It is a divine sorrow; a brokenness over your sin.
- It is a willingness to turn from your sin and turn to the Lord Jesus, not to turn back to your sin.
- It's a change of mind and heart and attitude and direction regarding your sin and the Savior.

God gives the sinner a choice. A decision has to be made.
- You can choose to remain in your sin, which will lead to death. Or you can choose to repent of your sin, turn to Christ, and receive forgiveness, purification, peace in your heart and mind, and wonderful fellowship with our Lord.

Which will you choose?

Jesus is standing at the door of your heart... He is standing and knocking, He's knocked before
That's the question you need to ask yourself once more... . What are you going to do with Jesus?

What are you going to do with Jesus? ... You can't be neutral
Because one day He will ask... What must I do with you?

Hallelujah, praise the Lamb!
Johannes 1:29-34

John gave titles to the Lord Jesus more than any other evangelist. Here in John one, for example, John gives Jesus eight titles, right in that first chapter. He calls Jesus:
. The Word – 1:1 . The Son of God—1:34
. Life – 1:4 . The King of Israel—1:49
. The Light – 1:7 . The Son of Man—1:51
. The Messiah/Christ - 1:41
But the most beautiful title John gives to Jesus is "The Lamb of God." John calls Jesus the Lamb more than 30 times in the Gospel of John and in Revelation.
- It is interesting that Matthew, Mark and Luke never refer to Jesus as the Lamb of God.

At John 1:29 the words “The next day John saw Jesus coming” form something of a bridge to the events. John does not record the actual baptism of Jesus nor his temptations by Satan in the desert.
-Mark points out that when Jesus came out of the water, the heavens parted or were "torn open" and the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus like a dove and a voice from heaven said, "This is my beloved Son in whom I'm very satisfied."
-Then the Spirit immediately sent Jesus into the wilderness for 40 days to be tempted by Satan.
-John doesn't record that. He bridges the two events by saying, "The next day." He is reminded of the sign God gave him that he on whom he saw the Spirit descending was the Messiah; the Christ.
- “The next day”, after the temptations and Jesus comes back to see John the Baptist, John says: “I knew who he was, but I did not know what he was – the Messiah, the Christ, the Lamb of God until I saw the Spirit come down on him.
-Now when a group of Jews come to John and John sees Jesus, he points to Jesus and says: “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world.”

It's a sacred, sacred moment. We are on holy ground. The Jews have waited and watched and longed for God to send His saint, the Lamb of God, and now John the Baptist identifies Jesus as God's Lamb.
- Notice that John does NOT say, "Behold the Messiah of God" or "Behold the Son of God" or "Behold the Word of God," but "The Lamb of God."
-Why does he say Lamb of God? John's baptism confronted the people with their need for repentance. But they needed more. They needed redemption. The Lamb of God would redeem them.

I want you to see three things related to the Lamb of God:

I. The Presentation of the Lamb

Our God is an omniscient God. He knows the end from the beginning. He knew when He created man that man must fall into sin and be redeemed if he was to have fellowship with God and live with Him forever. And so Jesus was the Lamb, slain before the foundation of the world.

Can I ask you something? "Whose hand shed the first drops of blood on this planet?" The answer is, our Creator, for He accepted an offering.
- When Adam and Eve sinned, they tried to hide their nakedness, their sinfulness, the fact that they were now exposed to themselves and to each other; and to God, and covered themselves with fig leaves. God found them and told them that fig leaves would not cover up their sinful act. The works of their hands or their human reason would never suffice to cover their sin. God would only accept a blood sacrifice for them.

In Genesis 3:21, God shed the blood of the first beast, a sacrifice, and made cloaks of skin to cover Adam and Eve.
- I believe it was a lamb that God used as an offering and sacrifice because in Genesis 4:4 it was a lamb, his best lamb, that Able offered before the Lord. How would Able know to sacrifice a lamb unless Adam told him to follow the Lord's example and sacrifice a lamb?

The question of the O.T. is: "Where is THE LAMB?"

A. In Genesis 4:4 the Lamb is typified

Able brought the lamb as a sacrifice. God said that life is in the blood and that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.
- The sacrifice of the Lamb was deeply rooted in the hearts and minds of God's people.

B. In Genesis 22:7-8 the Lamb is prophesied

Abraham and Isaac go to Mount Moriah to offer a sacrifice there. God puts Abraham to the test: Does Abraham love God more than Isaac? As they walked together, Isaac said to Abraham, "Father, here is the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?" Abraham replied, "My son, God will provide himself with a lamb."
-When Abraham and Isaac were going up one side of Mount Moriah, a ram was going up the other side of Mount Moriah, and God stopped Abraham's hand when he was about to sacrifice Isaac, saying, "Sacrifice the ram instead, the one with its horns in the thicket." captive.” This ram was wearing a crown of thorns, so to speak, a wonderful picture of our Lord on the cross wearing the crown of thorns.

C. In Exodus 12 the Lamb is slain and the blood is APPLIED

God is about to redeem his people from Egyptian bondage. The night has come for the last plague on Egypt - the killing of the firstborn. God's method of salvation is designed for His people—note Exodus 12:3-13

Note: A lamb was provided for one person for Isaac; Here a lamb is provided for a family.

God wants His people to personalize the Lamb. In Exodus 12:3 it is a lamb; in Exodus 12:4 it is THE Lamb; in Exodus 12:5 it is your lamb.

Note that each family must take a lamb that meets certain requirements. It is a beautiful picture of the Lord Jesus - Ex. 12:5-11 - "without spot" (perfect)...a his first year (firstborn)...keep it up (observe it; examine it to make sure it is pure). .kill it...take the
It (to take in personally).
-Exodus 12:46 don't break a bone of it
- Note Exodus 12:22,13 The lamb could be slaughtered and the blood put in the basin, but unless it was applied at the entrance of their house it would be of no use. Jesus died, shedding HIS blood, but unless His blood is personally applied to our individual hearts, it will benefit us nothing. Even the
The precious blood of The Lamb cannot save us unless it is applied to our hearts and lives.

-Lev. 16 - Two scapegoats were killed daily, one in the morning and one in the evening, for the sins of the NATION.

D. In Isaiah 53 the Lamb is personified

Isaiah speaks very clearly of Jesus - A man in sorrows, despised and rejected, wounded for our trespasses, bruised for our iniquities, who bore the sins of many - Jesus was the Lamb meant for the world.

E. In John 1:29 the Lamb is identified

I Kor. 5:7 Christ our Passover is offered for us.

John the Baptist was the son of a priest. How many times must he have seen his father take a lamb and sacrifice it. You can almost hear little John asking, “Dad, is that the Lamb of God?” Zechariah would say, “No, son. It is a Lamb, but it is not THE LAMB.” Now John stands and declares, “This is God's chosen Lamb; God's foretold Lamb; Behold THE Lamb!”
- This is the lamb that Abraham told Isaac about. He is the Passover lamb that Moses spoke of. He is the sacrificial lamb that Isaiah spoke of.
-He is OUR lamb! What else we boast about in Christ, let us boast above all in his cross; His sacrifice for us!

Do you want to be free from the burden of sin?
There's power in the blood, power in the blood...
There is power... miracle worker power
In the precious blood of the Lamb.

II. The purpose of the lamb - John 1:29

Jesus came "to take away the sin of the world." What does that tell us about Jesus Christ?

A. Christ is a Savior

He didn't come into the world to be a conqueror or a philosopher or a good moral teacher. He came to save sinners.
- He came to do what man could never do for himself; what money or works can never achieve. He came to "take away sin."

B. Christ is a complete Savior

Jesus took our sins upon himself and carried them away.

-He allowed our sin to be laid on himself - Isa. 53:6 “and the Lord put it on him
injustice from us all.”
-1. Peter 2:24a "who himself bears our sins in his own body on the tree." The sins of everyone who believes in Jesus are made as if they had never sinned at all. The Lamb of God took them away clean.

How can that be?
-I don't know much about computers, but I experienced something. That's called a computer crash. It means that for some reason you will lose everything that is stored on the computer. All information is gone. Well, where has it gone? Usually when something crashes, at least some remnants remain. Not so with a computer. It's gone like it was never there and you can't get it back.
- When the blood of Jesus is applied to our hearts and lives, He takes away our sin. Our sins are gone; no stay!

What can wash away my sins? Nothing but the blood of Jesus
What can make me healthy again? Nothing but the blood of Jesus
Oh! Precious is the river that makes me white as snow
I know of no other source, nothing but the blood of Jesus

C. Christ is an almighty Savior and a Savior for all mankind

He died not only for the Jews but also for the Gentiles; not for a few people, but for all mankind.
- His blood was precious blood - a unique blood that will wash away all the sins of ALL, but only those who believe in Him will have their sins forgiven.

D. Christ is an everlasting and tireless Savior

He daily takes away our sins from all who believe in Him - daily purification, daily cleansing, daily washing of the souls of HIS people, daily bestowing and applying new supplies of mercy.
-Lam. 3:22-23 says that the mercy of the Lord is new every morning.
- Our Lord's work did not stop for his saints when he died for them on the cross. He lives in heaven as a priest to continually offer his sacrifice before God. In grace he still works for us, always taking away sin.

In John 1:33 we are told that Jesus will baptize us with the Holy Spirit. That means he's taking us into his church, writing our name in the Lamb's book of life, never to remove it.

III. The praise for the lamb

Jesus is no longer the wounded, beaten, bleeding Lamb; He is the beautiful, shining, blessed Lamb.
-His saints will worship the Lamb forever and ever and rejoice with him.
-Rev. 5:11-13; 19:1,3a, 4b, 5-7

Behold the lamb, behold the lamb, slain from the foundation of the world.
For crucified sinners, oh holy sacrifice, behold the lamb, behold the lamb.

Crown Him with many crowns, The Lamb on His Throne:
Awaken, my soul, and sing of him who died for you
And salute him as your incomparable King for all eternity

Crown Him the Lord of love: see His hands and side
Rich wounds, yet visible above, In glorified beauty

Crown Him Lord of life, triumphant over the grave,
Who rose victorious to battle, For whom He came to save
We now sing his glories Who died and rise on high
Who died to bring eternal life And lives that death can die.

Crown Him Lord of Heaven From that glorious throne
Endless praise be to you, for you died for us.
Be You, O Lord, adored and glorified through endless days.

The man that other men follow
Johannes 1:35-51

There is nothing more exciting than watching someone be born into the kingdom of God.
- Not everyone reacts in the same way when they take Jesus into their hearts.
● When the Lord dealt with my heart, I was a lost church member. My pastor knew the Lord was dealing with me, but he thought the Lord was calling me to preach and I resisted the call. He assumed I was already saved. I came to all services. I sang in the choir. I've done things at church. The truth was, God dealt with me to preach, but I wasn't saved. I knew if I was ever saved I would have to preach. That night I got on my knees before the Lord, I gave him my heart and my life to preach his word. There was such a feeling of release in my heart when I finally surrendered to Him.

● When Tim was rescued, he cried. He just poured out his little heart and the tears flowed.

● When Janice was saved, she cried, but more than that, she and I rejoiced together and then we talked about how long the Spirit of God had been taking care of her and why she hadn't come sooner.

● I have seen others being saved and they just looked at me with a stunned expression on their faces, as if they couldn't believe it had really happened to them.

Not everyone reacts the same way. But that is not important. What matters is that you have a personal, born-again experience with the Lord.
Twice in John one, John the Baptist, pointing to Jesus, said, "Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world."
- In John 1:29 John said it to the group of Jews who came to hear him preach. Then, in John 1:36, John said it to two of his own disciples, Andrew and a young teenager named John, who wrote this book.
- These two men were engaged in the fishing business along with their brothers.

John the Baptist knew his job was to announce the Messiah and then get out of the way. Once the Messiah appeared, his own ministry would fade. He intended his disciples to leave him and follow Jesus, and many did.

In these closing verses of John 1, five men would leave everything and follow Jesus.
-Jesus was a man that other men would follow. What made Jesus a man that others wanted to follow?

I. Jesus is magnetic
Most of us have seen a magnet and been fascinated by it. There is a certain force in this magnet that attracts metal objects. Metal objects are not only attracted to the magnet, they also stick to the magnet themselves.
- Jesus has that kind of magnetic power on men. They are attracted to Him; then fasten them
to Him; then they pledge their allegiance to Him.

When John the Baptist pointed to Jesus as the Lamb of God, John challenged them to commit their allegiance to Jesus.

Five men in John 1 will not only trust and follow Jesus, but they will also become His disciples.
Jesus will use various methods to draw these men to himself.

A. Andrew and John are reached by preaching the Word.

John the Baptist had preached, prepared the way, laid down the truths about the soon-coming Messiah. Then, as he sees Jesus coming toward him, he says, "Behold, behold, the Lamb of God! Go and follow him, he is the one!”
- At this point, the hearts of Andrew and John are strangely drawn to Jesus.

(1) The interest of Andrew and John - John 1:35-37

The Holy Spirit used John's sermon to create in them hunger and a desire to know more.
-This is an essential part of salvation. The Holy Spirit begins to create a spiritual hunger in the heart. He begins to convince himself of his lost state; his condemnation in Hell; his need for a savior; his need for Jesus in his life.
- Being convinced is a terrible feeling, but the day God reveals your sin to you is one of the greatest days of your life.

(2) The investigation of Andrew and John - John 1:37-39

Andrew and John begin to follow Jesus. Jesus knows they are following him and turns to speak to them. He asked, "What are you looking for? What are you searching for?"
- Jesus did not ask this question for his own benefit. He is omniscient and knows why they are there. He asks for their benefit.
-"What are you looking for?" Someone to solve your problems? Someone you feel better with? A fire escape from hell?
-Or are you looking for someone who loves you unconditionally? Someone who will forgive your sins, save your soul, give you eternal life, and give you a home in heaven? If you look for it, you will find it in Jesus.
- What you get from life depends on what you are looking for in life. If you want someone to forgive your sins and change your life for the better, then Jesus is for you.

(3) The invitation to Andrew and John - John 1:38-39

Jesus invites these two men to INVESTIGATE him. You heard what John the Baptist said about him; Now he invites her to examine him for herself.
-That invitation still stands. "Come and see for yourself! Jesus has no ulterior motive. hell
I'll tell you upfront that not everything will be a cakewalk, but He will tell you that He will never leave or forsake you. You can trust him!

These two men never forgot when they met Jesus! They never got past the day of their salvation.
-John 1:39 John said it was about the tenth hour. John was then a teenager. When John writes this some 60 years later, it is just as real to him when he is 80 or 90 as it was when he first met Jesus. In fact, it's cuter and better now than it was then.
- The old song is true: "The longer I serve him, the sweeter he becomes."
-Do you remember the time you met Jesus for the first time? It may have been years, but you remember that experience like it was yesterday.

B. Peter is reached by a personal witness - John 1:40-42

Even before the Lord Jesus told his disciples he would make them fishers of men, Andrew found his brother Peter and landed “the great fisherman.” The word for "found" in John 1:41 is Eureka!
- Study the life of Andrew and you will see that he was always bringing people to Jesus. He brought his brother to Jesus; he brought a boy to Jesus with his lunch; He brought some Greeks to Jesus.
-In John 1:42 Jesus not only saw what Peter was, he saw what he could become.
-Andreas did a good day bringing Peter to Jesus. You and I never know what that person we lead to Jesus will become to the Lord.

C. Phillip is reached through the direct approach of our Lord - John 1:43-44

Our Lord becomes a personal soul winner. He found Philip.
-John carefully points out that Phillip is from the same town as Andrew and Peter. Why didn't Andrew find him and bring him to Jesus?
-Phillip is the kind of person who is easily overlooked, ignored or forgotten. He is shy and quiet. He seems rather negative and pessimistic, but Jesus went to see him.

D. Nathanael Bartholomew was reached through a friend's testimony—John 1:45-51

Nathanael was quite critical of Jesus because he was from Nazareth. Nathanael was from Cana in Galilee and the Galileans despised the people of Nazareth. They saw Nazareth as devoid of prophetic significance. But Jesus told him what kind of man he was and what he was doing before Philip even called him.

Jesus never treats two people equally, but He wants each person to know that He cares.

II. Jesus is our example/mentor

Jesus set the example; In fact, he is our role model.
Jesus wants us to be like him. He wants us:
. show mercy. Forgive. Have a redeeming spirit
. To live in communion and communion with the Father

The man that other men have followed wants you to follow him.
How could you say NO to this man?

The best is yet to come
Johannes 2:1-11
read the text

John 2:1 "And the third day" The third day of what? The third day after Nathanael's conversion in John 1:43-51.

John 2:1 "In Cana of Galilee there was a marriage." Let me give you an interesting insight into the Jewish wedding customs of our Lord's day. Jewish law said that a virgin should be married on Wednesday and a widow on Thursday. The reason for this law was that the Sanhedrin (the Jewish judicial authority) met in court twice a week. They met on Monday and Thursday. If, after the physical consummation of marriage, a dispute arose about a wife's virginity, the husband could come before the Sanhedrin the next day to plead his case. If the husband could make his case, the marriage could be annulled, a divorce granted, or in some cases he could have her stoned.

Has it ever struck you as a little strange that Jesus chose a wedding as the place where he began his public ministry? Or that his first miracle would involve the delivery of refreshments at a wedding reception?
- Couldn't He have chosen something more spectacular?
- If I had been the Lord's public relations representative at the time and known that he was about to begin his messianic career, I would have advised him to start with a big bang right away. “Lord, do something big… something dramatic… something that would be a huge crowd pleaser.
-Perhaps He could heal a man born blind. That has never happened before! Or, better yet, cleanse a leper! That always goes far beyond!
Or, if you really want to make a statement, raise someone from the dead!
Jesus would say, "I thought of turning water into wine."
- I would answer: “What? Why would you even want to perform such a miracle? where's the drama Why, sir. It won't even make the news!"

Jesus is already declared the Creator God in John 1; Now we see him in John 2 as the transforming God.
- This miracle of turning water into wine teaches us about the transforming power of Jesus and the joy he brings to transformed life.
-The first supernatural act of our Lord proves that He is the Master of all imaginable situations.
-Jesus showed through this miracle that he has unlimited power to do whatever he wants.

Someone asked John Wesley how Jesus could turn water into wine, and he replied, "Oh, that's very simple. The water took one look at Jesus, God’s glorious Son, and blushed.”
- A man who was saved after being a drinker for many years said: “I have no doubt that Jesus turned water into wine. I have seen him turn beer into food for my family and shoes for my children, and I have seen him turn a man who talked and acted like a fool into a saint who lives for God.”

I want us to see three things as we study this miracle:

I. The Place of the Miracle John 2:1-2

Our Lord's first miracle did not occur in the temple or at a funeral. It was in a house where a wedding was taking place. Not when fasting, but when feasting!
-That tells me that Jesus enjoyed life. He enjoyed happy, celebrated occasions. He was not a religious spoilsport. Some think of Jesus as a heavenly policeman in heaven, and when he sees us having a good time he says, “Stop that! That is not allowed!"
- Listen, Jesus loved life. He said, "I came that you may have life and have it abundantly."

It also tells me that Jesus put His stamp of approval on God-ordained marriage—marriage between a godly man and a godly woman.
-Jesus ordained marriage and He ordained the home.
- We live in a time where people say: “What difference does a piece of paper make? We'll just live together.” What Jesus approved was a public commitment to spoken love and commitment to one another.

Notice that Jesus was invited to the wedding, both he and his disciples. Jesus must be invited to every wedding and should be the guest of honor in every home.

Have you noticed that although Jesus was already present, he was not consulted until a crisis arose?
Many problems could be prevented or solved if Jesus were Lord of the house.
- One of the frustrating things for me as a pastor is that couples wait until their marriage is almost over and then they want the Lord to come and do a miracle in their home. He can work a miracle in your house, but how much better to let him be master of the house from the beginning and day after day.

Folks, time is too short not to build your homes on Christ. Thomas Carlyle was one of the most prolific writers in literature. He constantly produced materials for publication. To get his manuscripts to the publisher faster, he hired a secretary. In time, Carlyle and his secretary married. After her marriage, Mrs. Carlyle continued to work alongside her husband. One day it was discovered that Mrs. Carlyle was suffering from an incurable disease. Even after the diagnosis, she continued to work alongside her husband. Each week she grew weaker until finally she was bedridden. The day came when she died. On the day of the funeral, Thomas Carlyle was in a deep depression and dejection as he slowly walked back through the rain and mud. Almost unconsciously, he walked up the steps to his house, through the door, up the stairs, and into the room where his wife had spent her days in prison. He slowly sat down on the chair next to the bed and cried softly. After a few moments, he noticed his wife's journal on the bedside table. He picked it up and read the entries. On one side he read: "Thomas spent several hours with me today. It's like heaven when he's with me."

On another page he read: 'Thomas Carlyle didn't spend much time with me today. I wish he would spend more time with me."

Another day he read: 'Thomas Carlyle didn't see me at all today. I know he's busy but I wish he would spend more time with me."

He read page after page and entry after entry until he couldn't take it anymore. He put the book down, stormed out of the house, out into the rain and mud, down the road to the cemetery, and at the foot of a freshly covered grave he tearfully said, "Oh darling, darling, I didn't know that."

For the Jews of that time, a wedding was not just the social event of the year, but the whole life of the couple. Even the poorest families saved and saved to ensure the wedding was a special occasion for their children. On this day the wedding ceremony would take place, but they would not rush to honeymoon. The wedding feast lasted a week or ten days, and the feast and drinks were to last the whole time. Wine was considered essential to the joyful reception. Running out of wine would be a great source of embarrassment and humiliating shame. But assuming they did!

II. His Mother's Request John 2:3-5

Most scholars agree that Mary was in some way related to this couple and had some responsibility for catering; So she felt compelled to address the shortage. So she felt free to give orders to the servants.
- In fact, some scholars believe that the bride was one of the Lord's half sisters (John 2:12).

Note that the term "woman" is not disrespectful. It's the same expression he used when addressing his mother on the cross. The word means "good woman".
- The phrase “What have I to do with you” could be better translated as “What authority do you have over me?” He indicates that their relationship has changed now that He has begun His public ministry from a family relationship to a faith relationship.” There was only one voice that had authority over His ears, and that was the voice of God the Father: Jesus could not agree with their authority. He could only agree with His Heavenly Father's authority. So Jesus gave her a gentle rebuke.

Jesus said, "My hour is not yet come." What hour is Jesus referring to? He refers to this “hour” seven times in John (John 7:30; John 8:20; John 12:23, 27; John 16:32; John 17:1).
- The hour refers to the hour of humiliation and suffering when He would be delivered into the hands of sinners and subjected to man's will. Until that "hour" He was not to be commanded by men. He should attend to his father's business and seek only to do his father's will, not the will of Mary or man.

Mary's response shows that she was not hurt by what Jesus said. She understood what he said.
- Mary's instructions to the servants indicated that she believed Jesus would do something about the fact that there was no wine.

Heed Mary's advice - the best advice that can be given to people on earth: "Whatever He tells you to do, do it."
-Here's the secret to every miracle: When Jesus tells you, just do it! Sometimes it may not make sense to you, but do it anyway.
A. "Whatever he says to you, do that."
-That made no sense to the servants. They didn't need water, they needed wine.
B. "Whatever he says to you, do that."
C. "Whatever he says to you, do that."
D. "Whatever he says to you, do it."

Jesus could have performed the miracle without the servants, but He preferred to include these men in the miracle as much as possible.
- They couldn't turn the water into wine, but they could fill the jars with water.
-He gave the servants the opportunity and blessing to help in the Lord's work so that they could receive a blessing.

III. The Power of the Master John 2:6-10

These pots were used for ceremonial purification - washing pots in which people washed their hands and faces and sometimes their feet - not drinking pots!
- Each pot held between 20 and 30 gallons - conservatively let's say 25 gallons each. That's 150 liters of water.

Jesus said, "Fill it to the brim with water."
-It should be a 100% effort. This is the kind of effort and dedication that it takes to serve the Lord Jesus. If there is no brimful devotion and obedience in our lives, there will be no brimming blessings.

-It wasn't an easy task either. They couldn't put a skin of water in each of the pots and fill it. They had to keep going to the well, load by load, and carrying them back to the house.

Notice also that Jesus did not draw attention to himself but spoke softly to the servants. It was kind of a miracle behind the scenes.
- He did not order the water to be turned into wine. He did not pray over it or touch it. He just wanted it from afar and it happened.
- When the servants dipped the cup into the pots, they got water. But when the guest tasted it, it was wine. Not just wine, the best wine!!
_ Jesus bypassed all the normal and natural processes of winemaking - cultivating, planting, growing, harvesting the grapes, the time involved. It was an instant full-blown wonder - enough for 2,400 servings. It was a miracle of creation. Some will miss the miracle if they are not careful:

(1) Some only see the wine
- Some just want to know if it has been fermented; if so, then it must be okay to drink; To draw this conclusion proves the depth of one's carnality.
- I'll tell you this: You won't find what Jesus made in any store in Mississippi.
- Although I've never tasted beer or wine in my life, I would drink anything Jesus makes because it won't hurt you.

(2) Some only see the water pots

(3) All some see is the gentle rebuke to Mary.

The key to the miracle is twofold:

1) Jesus is in the transforming business
- He turns water into wine and He can transform you and me into His image.
- Someone said: Nature shapes us; Sin deforms us; Education informs us; Correctional institutions reform us, but only Jesus transforms us.

It took a miracle to put the stars in their place
It took a miracle to hang the world in space,
But when he saved my soul, cleansed and healed me,
It took a miracle of love and grace!
We can be transformed by the touch of the Master's hand.
(2) Jesus always saves the best for last... The best is yet to come—John 2:10
-God and Satan are polar opposites.
-Satan likes to pull his big guns forward. He offers his most enticing and appealing things in the beginning especially when you are young.
-The devil is very good at packing his goods. He can make very bad things look really cool. He blames you and says, "Hey, you have to do this. You have to try it yourself. Don't pay attention to the church people. What they say may have been fine for their generation, but man you gotta live it now. Don't miss anything. You are only young once and you only live once. Reach for the best now while you can get it.”

Young people, listen: you determine the end of your life from the beginning. You decide where you will be 20 years from now by the decisions you make and the paths you take.
- As the years go by and experience grows, one begins to reap what one sows. Gal. 6:7
- You can either reap the bitter end of sinful life, or you can enjoy the sweet fruit
a godly life.

A woman was diagnosed with a terminal illness and given three months to live. As she got her things in order, she contacted her pastor and asked him to come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her last wishes. She shared with the pastor what hymns they would sing in the service, what Bible verses they would read, and what dress she would like to be buried in. The woman also asked to be buried with her favorite Bible. Everything was fine and the pastor was about to leave, when suddenly the woman remembered something very important to her. "Oh, there's something else," she said excitedly. "What is that?" came the pastor's reply. "This is very important," the woman continued. "I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand." The pastor stood and looked at the woman, not knowing what to say. "That surprises you, doesn't it?" asked the woman. "Well, to be honest, I'm surprised at the request," said the vicar. Well, the woman explained.
"Throughout my years of attending church functions and potluck dinners, I always remember that as the dishes were being cleared for the main course, someone would inevitably lean forward and say, 'Keep your fork.' That was mine Favorite part because I knew that something better was coming like a velvety chocolate cake or a succulent apple pie, something wonderful and substantial! I just want people to see me in the coffin with a fork in my hand, and I want them to say, 'What about the fork?' Then I want you to tell them, 'Keep your fork. The best is yet to come."
The priest's eyes filled with tears of joy. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before she died. But he also knew that the woman had a better handle on the sky than he did. She KNEW something better was coming.
At the funeral, people walked past the woman's coffin and saw the pretty dress she was wearing, her favorite Bible, and the fork in her right hand. Everyone asked, "What about the fork?" During his address, the pastor told people about the conversation he had with the woman before she died. And he told them about the fork and that they probably wouldn't stop thinking about it either. He was right. Who would want to forget that because of our relationship with God, we can embrace the future, a future of hope?
For the Christian, the best is yet to come.

If you are not a Christian, the worst is yet to come.
- I don't care how much fun you think you're having right now or what amazing things you're experiencing.
- The Bible says there will be a harvest for what you sow. There is a future judgment and you will be held accountable for how you have lived your life and most importantly what you have done with Jesus.

The miracle of Cana happened because Jesus was invited.
-Jesus will never burst into your life uninvited.
-He's waiting to be asked. Once you invite Him into your life, you have absolutely no idea what a difference He can make in your life today.
When God cleans the house
Johannes 2:13-25

The wedding feast in Cana is over. Jesus now goes down to Capernaum with his mother and some of his half brothers and his first five or six disciples.
- Jesus is estranged from his hometown of Nazareth, so Jesus chooses Capernaum to become his home base. Capernaum was also the place where Matthew was called as a disciple.

The Jewish Passover was approaching. On Passover, the Jews celebrated their liberation from Egyptian bondage.
- The Passover was celebrated on the 15th of the month of Nisan, which was around mid-April. Every Jewish adult male over the age of twelve should attend three annual festivals in Jerusalem: Passover, Pentecost, and the Feast of Tabernacles.
- When the Jews were scattered all over the world, it was more difficult for them to attend the festival. Those within 15 miles of Jerusalem were required to attend. Up to 2,225,000 Jews could be found in Jerusalem during Passover.

Passover brought a mood of anticipation across the land. The Jewish tradition took a whole month to prepare - the roads were repaired, the bridges rebuilt, the graves whitewashed.
-As Jesus and his disciples approached Jerusalem, the streets became very congested. As they entered the city gates and temple area, it began to look like a religious flea market—doves in cages, oxen and sheep in pens, rows of tables set up for the moneychangers.
-What Jesus saw was nothing new. It had been like this for a long time and every year it seemed to get worse.
- When Jesus comes to Jerusalem this time, He will clean the house!

I want you to see three things as we watch Jesus clean the house:

I. The pollution of the temple - John 2:13-16

Now get the picture: The word “temple” here does not refer to the temple sanctuary. Rather, it refers to the temple complex or judgment of the Gentiles. It was the first of three judgments, or the outer judgment.
-This court was an area of ​​about 14 acres. Fourteen hectares are about the size of 13 soccer fields.

When the Jewish worshipers came to Jerusalem to worship at Passover, they worshiped by doing two things:

(1) They would bring and offer a sacrifice to the Lord

They might offer an ox or a sheep, or if they were poor like Mary and Joseph and could not afford a sheep or ox, they would offer doves. Jesus would have special sympathy for the dove sacrifices.
-Since many Jews who came for Passover lived many miles from Jerusalem, it was difficult for them to bring an animal sacrifice with them on the long journey. So they would have to buy one

Sacrificial animal after arriving in Jerusalem for Passover.
-In German. 14:24-26, God wanted to make things more convenient for His worshipers, so the Lord recommended that a service be offered for those who travel far so that they could buy an animal at the court. God intended it as a blessing for his people.

(2) The second reason for Jewish worshipers to come to Jerusalem at this time was to pay the temple tax.
This sacrifice, which had to be paid, was half a shekel, which was about a day and a half's wages.
- This money was used to pay for the daily sacrifices, offerings and expenses for the year-round running of the temple. That half shekel was a debt to the Lord.
-Because it was given to the Lord, no foreign money was allowed because it was considered unclean. No image of a foreign king was allowed to defile the temple because God was the Lord to be worshiped and honored. The silver in the Jewish shekel was purer than that in other coins. Since Greek and Roman coins were used, as well as coins from all other foreign countries, there was a need for these money changers. The changers were allowed to exchange the money for a fee of 4%.

The ministry of providing sacrificial animals should have been a boon to these long-distance travelers. It may have started as a convenience, but at some point religious leaders decided to try and make a small profit along the way.
- A man's old sinful, deceitful, desperately evil heart grew more and more greedy. In Jesus' day, the only animals that could be sacrificed were those sold by the temple vendors. There was a monopoly on sacrificial animals.

Here's what happened:
The law required that a perfect sacrifice be made to offer before God. Sometimes families brought their own animals to offer. As perfect as the animals may be, they are usually rejected by the examiners. They would "find" something wrong with the animal. The examiners would take their animal as a sort of "barter animal" and would sell you a temple animal for up to 30 times the animal's normal price. Then, on top of that, they would take the rejected animal and put it in the pen with the temple animals and sell it to someone else as a perfect sacrifice.

Paying the Temple Tax: Because Jews came from all over the known world, their coins bore the image of their Caesar. These coins could not be used. The exchangers exchanged the Roman coin for a Jewish coin for a fee. The Roman coins accumulated and when the Jewish coins were put into the treasury, the exchangers kept taking the Jewish coins from the treasury and using the same Jewish coins to exchange them for the Roman coins.
- The leaders saw an opportunity for profit, and exchange rates were high. Jewish historian Alfred Edersheim says that at this point in history, the priest was making the equivalent of $300,000 a year just by exchanging money.

This raises a question I've been asked dozens of times:
-Is it wrong to sell things in church?
-NO. The sale of sacrificial animals was even recommended by the gentleman in Deut. 14:24-26. It is very fitting when a church can provide things that can be a blessing to people; such

Things like books or records.
-The problem arises when the church starts to take advantage of people.

II. The Cleansing of the Temple - John 2:15-17

When Jesus meets sinners, he does not meet them with a whip and harsh words. He meets them with compassion and forgiveness.
- In John 8, when the religious leaders drugged the woman caught in adultery before Jesus, He said to her: “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
- It is always the religious hypocrites for whom Jesus has harsh words.

It is easy to understand why Jesus asserted his authority over the temple early in his ministry. He calls the temple "my Father's house" and "my house." He has great zeal for his house.

(1) Note that Jesus armed himself - John 2:15

The lamb was a lion! Jesus was not a weak, effeminate sissy, as some artists portray him. He was a powerful, red-blooded He-Man! He was the manliest of all men.
-Meek Jesus, meek and mild is a concept that has been revised. Do not get me wrong. Jesus is meek and mild, but we must reconcile this with other descriptions of our Lord. He not only rewards righteousness, but also punishes sin.
(a) Mark 3:5 When the religious leaders watched if he would heal on the Sabbath so that they might accuse him, "he looked about with anger."
(b) Luke 13:31-32 Some Pharisees told Jesus that he had better leave the city because Herod would kill him. Jesus said, "Go tell that fox I'm casting out devils, I'm healing people, and I'll be here today and tomorrow."
(c) Matt. 16:23 He said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan."
(d) Matt. 23:27, 33 Jesus called the religious leaders "white tombs full of dead bones" and a "generation of vipers and serpents."

(2) He "chased out the animals... threw out the money changer and overturned the tables."

He single-handedly drove out the animals and drove a group of evil men out of the temple, and none dared to protest or resist as they looked into His shining eyes and felt His fierce anger and righteous indignation.
- There is no record of Jesus ever using the whip on people. Righteous outrage attacks the problem, never the people.
- The fact is that Jesus was as godlike here as He was when He was on the cross. He revealed as much of God on that occasion as he did on Calvary.
- You can tell just as much about a person by what they hate as by what they love. Jesus was the calmest soul that ever lived. He could endure the most bitter of insults without saying a word. But when the time came for him to defend his father's house and honor, he laid aside his calm composure and vented his anger.
- A man who never gets angry about anything is a man who doesn't stand up for anything. You could always tell where Jesus stood.
-A certain man kept asking, “What do you know for sure?” One of his friends got tired of the question and finally replied, “One thing I know for sure.

A serpent cannot span a tree trunk.” I have known some two-legged serpents that could span a tree trunk, but Jesus never climbed a fence in his life.

The disciples remembered Psalm 69:9

Jesus cleaned the house.
-It's not always fun to keep the house clean. In fact, it is a work that is never finished.
- Did you know that you can never stop cleaning the house? House cleaning is a job that is never finished.

This is not the first time the temple has had to be cleaned. Several times in the O.T. The temple needed to be cleaned or repaired.
● 2 Kings 18 – King Hezekiah cleansed the temple because the people worshiped the bronze serpent that Moses made in the wilderness. Hezekiah broke it into pieces.

● 2 Kings 23 - Josiah found the lost book of the law in the temple. After reading it, he destroyed the cabins of "perverts" or sodomites, as well as the temple prostitutes in the temple.

Jesus had to cleanse the temple twice, once at the beginning of his ministry and once at the end of his ministry.

In the O.T. God had a temple for his people; in the NT God has a people for his temple.
-1 Cor. 3:16; I Kor. 6:18-20
-1. Peter 4:15-17 When we clean the house, we must start at home.

What pollutes our temple, our body? Col. 3:8; Gal. 5:19-21
- Do you need to do a spring cleaning?

III. The purpose of the temple - John 2:16

When Augusteen was tempted to sin, he said to himself, "O Augusteen, don't you know that wherever you go you carry God with you?"

What is the purpose of the temple? Pray, proclaim, praise

What must God cast out of your temple? A habit? any sin? Any setting? A little cold?

Let the whip of the Holy Spirit drive it far from your heart.

Nick in the night
Or what does it really mean to be born again?
Johannes 3:1-10

I am convinced that if there is one doctrine that Satan would corrupt if he could, it would be the doctrine of reincarnation. "What does it mean to be born again?"
- You see, you can misunderstand many teachings of the Bible and still go to heaven when you die. You can misunderstand what the Bible says about election and predestination and still go to heaven when you die. You can misunderstand what the Bible says about eschatology, the study of future or ultimate things, and still go to heaven when you die. You can misunderstand what the Bible says about spiritual gifts or speaking in tongues or baptism and still go to heaven when you die.
-But there is one doctrine that you better understand and have right if you want to go to heaven when you die, and that is the doctrine of reincarnation.
-I have said that Satan would like to corrupt this teaching. Just listen to preachers preach today and you'll hear a dozen different ideas about what it takes to be born again or saved.
- It really doesn't matter what MAN says about being born again, but it does matter what the Lord Jesus says about it.

This expression “born again” is a biblical term: 1 Peter 1:23; John 1:11-13; I John speaks of being "born of God."
-What does it mean to be born again? More importantly, have YOU been born again?

First let me talk to you about:

I. The must of new birth - John 3:3,5,7

John Wesley preached in a revival. Sunday morning and again that evening, then every evening through Thursday evening, he preached on "Ye Must Be Born Again." Before Friday night's service, a man said to him, "Mr. Wesley, at every service you've preached about You Must Be Born Again. Why did you do that?” Mr. Wesley said with a wink, “Because, sir, you must be born again.” If you wish to go to heaven after death, rebirth is not optional. It is a must! Why?

A. Because of man's nature—John 3:3–5

The words "a man" mean any man and every man. The "must" of rebirth is universal and imperative.
-Without regeneration man is blind - John 3:3 - He cannot see or understand or comprehend the kingdom of God or the things of God.
-Without regeneration man is excluded from the kingdom of God - John 3:5.

We can look at some people and we can immediately tell that they have a sinful nature.
-You lie drunk in a gutter; or they live in some kind of immorality; or they have a dirty mouth. You must be reborn!
-But look at Nicodemus:

(1) He was rich

Some have the idea that money can buy anything. It can buy many things in this world, but it cannot buy anything in heaven. It cannot buy life or entry into heaven.
-Here we WORK for gold; in heaven we will WALK golden streets.

(2) Is war respectable

As he walked the streets, people knew who he was and they drew their children's attention to him. He was held in high esteem by all who knew and saw him.
- It's good to be respected and to have a good reputation among people, but that doesn't get you a place in heaven.

(3) He was religious

He was a Pharisee, meaning "the set apart." Pharisees were the keepers of both the written and oral law.
-He was also "a ruler of the Jews". He was a master teacher, one with authority. His opinion carried a lot of weight.
- Not all Pharisees were hypocrites. Many, like Nicodemus, were deeply sincere, respectful, and of high moral character. But most of them were mentally blind.
- He knew all about God in his head, but had never experienced Him in his heart. Like many others, he would have missed the sky by five inches - he knew God in his head but not in his heart.
-He didn't know anything was missing in his life until he met Jesus. If you had asked him if he was right about God, he would have said, “I think so; Hopefully; I do my best."
-He was lost and didn't know it. Little did he know that he didn't know God in a personal, spiritual way. He thought he was right about God, but he wasn't.
-Many think they can BE or DO enough to guarantee their access to Heaven.
"I joined the church, go to Sunday school, sing in the choir, and even tithe!"
- It's good to do all these things, but it won't get you to heaven!

B. Because of the nature of the sky

Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people. You can't go to heaven until heaven enters you!

A lady came to Dr. B.R. Larkin and said, "Oh, Dr. Larkin, I was just wondering how do I get my robe over my wings when I go to heaven?" Larkin said, "Well, I was wondering how you get your hat over your horns?"

II. Some misconceptions about the new birth

Let me tell you what the New Birth is NOT:

A. It's not just about joining the Church

People think, "Oh, minister, I know this isn't just about joining the church." Yet many who have not had a real experience of salvation have joined the church knowing that something is missing in their lives , they somehow feel okay and have a false sense of security.

-Some who just joined the Church without actually receiving Christ into their hearts,
Knowing something is missing in their lives are too proud to admit they didn't do it right when they “joined” the Church.
-Satan will fill their minds with, “What will people think of you if you admit that you are not truly saved? After all, you're so loyal. In fact, you are even a leader in the church—a Sunday school teacher, a choir member, a deacon, a minister.”
- I had two young men who were devoted to preaching and came forward to accept Jesus as Savior and Lord. Both had joined the Church, realizing something was wrong with them and feeling that God must be calling them to preach because they had already joined the Church. Then they realized that God was not calling them to preach, but was drawing them to be saved.
- I have seen saved deacons, saved wives of deacons, saved elderly who thought they had been saved for a long time.
-Let me tell you what others may think of you, admitting that you are not truly saved will be nothing compared to how you will feel when one day Jesus says, “I never knew you and you knew you didn't know me, but you were too proud in your heart to admit it."

B. It's not just a belief

When I was about nine years old, I was in a church service one Sunday and I went to the front. Instead of leading me to a saving experience with Jesus, the pastor asked me if I would like to join the Church and be baptized. Then he asked me to fill out a card. At the end of the service he announced to the people there that I was now saved and on my way to heaven. The problem was that I had not taken Jesus into my heart. As a nine-year-old boy, I didn't know what to do when I volunteered. After that I stepped forward to rededicate my life to the Lord because I knew something was wrong in my heart. This went on until I was 21, when I was truly saved.

III. The Mystery of the New Birth—John 3:4–9

The word "how" is used twice in these two verses. The first time it is used in John 3:4 means the possibility of being born again and the second time in John 3:9 means the process of being born again.

Nicodemus wants to know: “Is it possible to be born again; start all over again?"
- Remember that we have heard the term “born again” for most of our lives. He hears this term for the first time. If you had heard this term for the first time, what would have come to mind?
-He thought about physical birth. This too is a mystery that we cannot understand. How can we understand the mystery of spiritual birth?

Jesus speaks of the new birth as follows:

A. A divine birth... and uses two illustrations

(1) He compares it to birth—3:4-7

What is the “water” that Jesus speaks of? Three options:

● Some say it refers to water baptism, but baptism never represents life in the Bible. Rather, it is a picture of death. It shows the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Redemption comes through the shed blood; not water.
● Others say it represents the Word of God. The Word of God is powerful and it purifies, but when you look at it in context here, I don't think that's the meaning.
● I believe it refers to physical birth.

1. Physical birth produces life
- A baby has life because it is born. Likewise, spiritual birth provides a person with spiritual life.
- God uses the man of God, the Word of God and the Spirit of God to bring forth or give birth to His divine nature in us.

2. Physical birth occurs only once
The same is true spiritually. Your spiritual birth is a unique experience. It cannot be undone and cannot be redone.

3. Physical birth takes place because of another's pain and suffering.
Just as a mother enters the jaws of death, Jesus entered the jaws of death so that you may be born again. The new birth is based directly on someone else's pain.

4. Physical birth gives the infant a brand new start
-No baby is born with a past. You have no past, only a future! So it is with the new birth. If you're saved, you'll get a brand new start. Your past has been erased and a new, clean future lies before you.
- I heard about an old man who got up one morning and found his name on the obituary notice. When the man called the newspaper to complain, they said, “We'll make it up to you in tomorrow's paper. We'll put your name in the birth column and give you a brand new start."

(2) He compares it to a breeze—John 3:8

The word for "wind" is the Greek word "pneuma". It is the same Greek word that is translated Spirit and Breath of God.
- "So is everyone who is born of the breath of God." When God breathed breath into Adam and he became a living soul, the Spirit breathes life into us.

We don't know much about the wind. We cannot see or control it. We cannot tie a rope around it or catch it in a basket or lock it in a cell, but we can see the results and effects of the wind.
-When the Spirit comes into someone, you can see the results and effects as they clean up their speech and habits. An invisible force changed her.
- A proof of salvation is the testimony of the Spirit in us.

B.A Dynamic Birth—John 3:9

How - What is the process?
-The word "again" is "anothen" and has three meanings:
(1) Again = a brand new birth from a heavenly source. It is an act of God by which eternal life is bestowed.

(2) From above – Rom. 8:9b,16
Rome. 8:9b So if anyone does not have the spirit of Christ, it is not his.
Romans 8:16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God:

(3) Again - 2 Cor. 5:17
2Co 5:17 So if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old is gone; behold, all things have become new.

IV. The merit of the new birth

Jesus is offering you the same privilege that he offered to Nicodemus 2,000 years ago.
-Satan is trying to make people believe that salvation is something to fear, something to put off as long as possible, something not to want. He wants you to hold on to your old life, even if you know better.
-What if you don't come to Jesus – John 3:18, 36; Frosted. 7:21-23; Frosted. 25:41

Joh 3:18 Whoever believes in him will not be condemned; but whoever does not believe is already condemned, because he did not believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Joh 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; and he who does not believe in the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abides upon him.

Mat 7:21 Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does the will of my Father in heaven.
Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and cast out devils in your name? and done many wonderful works in your name?
Matt 7:23 And then I will confess to them: I never knew you: depart from me, you criminals!

Matt 25:41 Then he will also say to them on the left: Depart from me, you who are cursed, into eternal fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.

- God's promise: "Whoever comes to me, I will not cast out."

Our savior like a snake
John 3:14-15; Numbers 21:4-9; I Kor. 10:9

You can look at the sermon title with a question mark. How could our Savior be like a serpent?
- The first time we see a serpent in the Bible is in Genesis 3, and the serpent represents Satan and sin and tempted Eve to sin.
-Gene. 3 is the first time we see the snake. The last time we see the serpent is in Rev. 20 and she will be thrown into the lake of fire.

Or you can look at the sermon title with an exclamation point; for Christ was made sin for us, and even as those bitten by the fiery serpents could look upon the bronze serpent on the pole and live; Likewise, all who look to Jesus lifted up for our sins will live.

Remember that in John 3 Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about being born again. Twice he asked Jesus "how" a man could be born again.

1. In John 3:4 he asked Jesus how this was possible. He wants to know about the possibility of reincarnation.
2. Then he asked again in John 3:9, "How can that be?" He asked about the process of being born again.

Now Jesus uses an O.T. Event with which Nicodemus would be familiar.
-God had brought the nation of Israel out of Egypt and promised to bring them to the Promised Land. But God put his people to the test at Kadeshbarnea. They sent 12 spies to scout the country and came back with a nasty report. Because of this, God told them that they would wander in the wilderness for 40 years until the old generation died out and a new generation was raised.
-They have been in the wild for about 38 years. Most of the old generation was extinct, but not all. Some of the older generation were still present up to Numbers 26. What would the new generation look like? Actually, the new generation was not much different from the old generation.
- For 38 years God had led and fed them, but the children of Israel had grown weary of both the leading and the feeding of God, and they began to murmur, complain, and quarrel against the Lord and their leaders. And when they did, God sent judgment upon the people in the form of these fiery serpents. But with punishment came forgiveness. That is the wonderful truth I want you to see in these passages.

The story of Numbers 21:4-9 was certainly familiar to Nicodemus.
1. It was a story of SIN as the nation rebelled against God and needed to be punished. God sent fiery serpents that bit people and many died.
2. It is also a story of GRACE, for Moses interceded for the people and God provided a remedy. He told Moses to make a brass serpent and put it on a pole for all to see. Any affected person who looked at the snake would be instantly healed.
3. It is also a story of faith: when the people looked in faith, they were saved.

I. The defiant sinners

What did these people do that was so terrible and so terrible that God would unleash these fiery serpents to attack and kill them?

A. You have reviled the person of God
One of the things these people knew and did well was bitch and complain. That was about all they had done for 38 years. listen to record:

Numbers 11:1 And when the people complained, the LORD displeased them; and the LORD heard it; and his anger was kindled; and the fire of the LORD burned among them and consumed those who were at the end of the camp.

Numbers 14:2 And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron; and the whole congregation said to them, Oh God, we should have died in the land of Egypt! or had god we would have died in this wilderness!

Numbers 16:41 But in the morning all the congregation of the children of Israel grumbled against Moses and against Aaron, saying, You have killed the people of the LORD.

Numbers 17:12 And the children of Israel spoke to Moses, saying, Behold, we die, we perish, we all perish.

● At least 8 times they accused Moses of wanting to kill them.

Up until now they had only spoken against the leadership - Moses and Aaron - but now notice what is happening in Num. 21:5. "And the people spoke against God."

B. They rejected God's prophets - Numbers 21:5 (and against Moses)

C. They renounced God's providence—Numbers 21:5
-One translation reads: “We're fed up with this junk food; this bread that you give us.”
- This bread, the manna, was a type of Christ. John 6:41 Jesus said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven."

II. The Deadly Serpents

In order to understand what is going on here, it is important to realize that neither the judgment nor the remedy were an accidental phenomenon.
- It's not that the Lord saw his people sinning and then said to himself, “Well, what shall I afflict them with today? I think I'm sending snakes! I have never tried this punishment before.”
- Nor was the form of judgment simply due to the fact that snakes were a convenient means of plaguing the people of this part of the desert.
- Rather, it was a sign of importance to the Israelites.

Why snakes? Because snakes speak of Satan as well as sin. The serpent is a symbol of Satan himself. In the form of a serpent, Satan deceived Eve and brought forth the sin that resulted in their being cast out of the garden and into this fallen world.
- The wilderness of Param was a place covered with fiery serpents. But up to this point, people had been protected by God. Now God has let her go. They were under God's control. God could allow them to hit or deny them.

What does sin do?
-It does what a desert serpent does. The snake's color may be beautiful, but it stalks, it strikes, it brings untold pain, and then it kills.
-Sin demeans, hurts, shames, damages and condemns everything it touches.
-Hear the screams, feel the pain, feel the fear, see the dying - all because of sin!

III. The Desperate Situation—Numbers 21:6

My mom was bitten by a rattlesnake one night when she was 10 or 12 years old while she was looking for a pair of work gloves. It took them about three hours to get her to a doctor. They took a pint and a liter of poison from her arm.

Description of a bitten person: the tongue would contract; the throat began to close. It wouldn't be long before you couldn't speak clearly anymore. Then the hearing would be impaired. Sounds seem far away until you can't hear them anymore. The eyes begin to fail; view becomes night. The heart slows down until it stops.

This report reminds us of the plight of the people today.

(1) The sting of the snakebite was death. The sting of sin is death. The whole world had been bitten by sin.

1Co 15:56 The sting of death is sin; and the power of sin is the law.
Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

(2) There was no medical help for a bite in the wilderness. The human race offers no effective cure for the bite of sin.

Tit 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us through the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit;

(3) People died from the bites. Clue #21:7. The snakes were not the ROOT of the problem; the snakes were the FRUIT of the problem. Sin is the root of our problem.

IV. The Divine Solution - Numbers 21:7-9; John 3:14

Moses prayed - intervened - for the people, and God gave them a strange remedy.

We see the point of symbolism when we come to the NT.
This is a story about Jesus.
- Why was Moses instructed to make a bronze serpent and put it on a pole and lift it up? A serpent is the symbol of sin and the raised rod is a symbol of the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ when He was exalted on the cross.
-Sometimes we see Jesus on the cross and worship him as the Lamb of God dying for our sins, but sometimes we forget that the Lamb of God bore our sins on the Cross. He
took my sin and your sin upon himself. He carried our sins in his body on the tree.

- I think the reason God instructed Moses to make a snake and put it on a pole is because God is
wanted us to see what Jesus carried for us.
- God laid the sins of all of us on Jesus. He who knew no sin became sin for us. The serpent was a symbol that Jesus bore our sins.

See how this bronze serpent is an image of Christ

1. The bronze serpent was made like a fiery serpent but without a sting. Christ was made like a sinful man, but without sin. 2 Cor. 5:21; Rome. 8:3

2. Brass is a symbol or image of judgment in the Bible. God's judgment was upon Jesus Christ because He bore our sins.

3. Both the serpent and Christ were exalted as objects of faith and deliverance for the dying.

How can Christ, pure and sinless, be portrayed as the portrait of evil?
● When we look at the cross, we see the depravity of sin. When we look at the cross and see the wounds, the blood, the bruises, the tears and even the joy of His lying murderers, we see sin in all its raw horror.
● Calvary should be engraved in our minds forever, showing us the depths of evil of which we are all capable.
● When we see the serpent on the pole, we see Satan on the cross mocking Christ. If you've seen the movie The Passion of the Christ, you've seen a snake coiled around the arms of the cross, its head next to Christ's ear as if whispering in his ear and having a grin on his face .

The verb "exalted" has a double meaning: to be crucified (John 8:28; John 12:32-34) and to be glorified and exalted. In his gospel, John indicates that our Lord's crucifixion was in fact the means of His glorification (John 12:23ff). The cross was not the end of his glory, it was the means of his glory.

Acts 2:33 Being exalted at the right hand of God, having received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, he poured out these things which you now see and hear.

Look at the simple requirement - Numbers 21:8-9
- The snake on the pole was not a magical cure for snake bites. It was a sign that worked, taking the Lord at his word by faith. People should look attentively at the bronze serpent and put their trust in the power of the Lord's victory over evil, and then they would be healed.
- You couldn't look intensely at the bronze snake and something else too.

The truth is that we are constantly bitten by sin, so we must constantly look to the cross for healing.

Each man had to search for himself. No man could seek the benefit of another.
- It wasn't enough to know about the snake. You had to look at it in faith.

-Every man must come to Christ by faith on the terms of the Lord.

Knowing the Lord is not enough to save you from your sins.
- People didn't die because they were bitten, but because they didn't look. We do not die in our sins and stand guilty before a holy God because Adam sinned and gave us a sinful nature. Nor do we die in our sins because we sin. If we die in our sins, it is because we do not look to the Lord Jesus in faith.

That was God's ONLY remedy. Nobody looked and still died. Everyone who watched lived.

-The healing was instantaneous. The moment they looked was the moment they lived. And it didn't matter where they were bitten or how many times they were bitten. If they looked, they lived.

Love is at its peak
Johannes 3:16

John 3:16 is the magnifying glass of God's love for mankind. If there is one verse that sums up the heart of God and the heart of the Bible, it would be the verse. John 3:16 is the heart of revealed truth.

THE great truth of God's Word is GOD LOVES YOU PERSONALLY!

John 3:16 does not speak of human love, which is often biased and often impure in its motives. THIS IS GOD'S LOVE!
-Human love is selfish and is usually given on the basis of what it can hope to get in return!
- God's love is not like that at all! His love is always pure, always holy, always seeking the best for the beloved. His love is freely given, with no hope of asking for anything in return.
- God loves because he IS love! His love never ends!
-Jer. 31:3 “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; with loving kindness I drew you.”
-I John 4:19 "We love him because he first loved us."

God's love is amazing love!

The great German theologian Carl Barth spoke in one of our seminars and the president of the seminar said after his speech: “We have time for questions. If you are Dr. Barth would like to ask a question, please raise your hand.” A student stood up and asked, “Dr. Barth, could you share with us the deepest spiritual truth you have learned over the years studying the Word of God? Barth thought for a moment and then said, "The deepest truth I know is that God loves me."

No sooner had he uttered the words than the truth of those words really touched his heart and he said a second time, “God loves me!” Then he got on one knee and said with tears in his eyes, “Oh, God loves me !“

The greatest truth you can know is that GOD loves you.
- I say this because our world is full of people who think, “Nobody loves me.” I've met young people who feel this way and divorced people who feel this way. May I assure you: God loves you!
The songwriter said:
There's the wonder of the sunset in the evening
I see the miracle of the sunrise
But the wonder of wonders that excites my soul
Is the miracle that God loves me.

A few years ago, a 17-year-old young man had just graduated from high school. He came from a wealthy family. He had already been accepted into a fine college. His parents told him to go to a car dealership and pick out the car he wanted as a graduation present for him. Not many weeks later he went to his house, got a waterskin and walked down a pasture track.

With a full tank of gas, he stuck one end of the hose into his new car's exhaust pipe and the other end into the windshield. They found his body with a note he had written that read: "I've discovered that nobody loves me. My parents don't love me. I don't think even God loves me. i don't love myself It would be better for everyone if I didn't exist," and he signed the letter. If only he had known how much God loved him!

Would you look with me at John 3:16 and see?

I. The Greatness of God's Love

The biggest word in the Bible is the little word "So". It points to the depth of God's love.
- It describes the extent of God's love for fallen people. It is a deep love that motivated God to send his only begotten Son to die for the lost.
- It is unusual love, because this is God's love! This is no ordinary love. It is a special love that wants to give itself to sinful people. Even for those who think, "I'm too sinful, or I'm too ugly, or I'm not smart enough, or I'm not worthy." God loves you!

This should not surprise us, for to love is God's true nature, 1 John 4:8–16
- The greatest thought that enters the human mind is this: “Jesus loves me, I know that because the Bible tells me so!” Jesus loves me when I am well and he is very happy about that. Jesus loves me when I'm down, even though it makes him very sad.
- The second most important thought is this: There is nothing you can do to make him stop loving you, Rome. 8:38-39

The true value of love lies in what love is willing to give to the loved one.
- You see, God's love is not stagnant or self-centered. His love doesn't just sit still while men go to hell! His love made him do something for the people he loves.
- God's love is shown in the devotion of his precious Son to die for sinners on the cross.
-Rom. 5:8; 1. Johannes 4:9-10; 1. Johannes 3:16; 1 Petrus 3:18
If you want to see what God's love is like, go to the cross - Eph. 3:18-19

II. The eyes of God's love

"Since God so loved the world". What are God's eyes on? Not nature, the world of trees, forests, mountains, etc.
Despite man's sinful condition and the fact that the natural man hates God and opposes all that God stands for, God still saw value in human life.

Man doesn't see much value in human life, but God does. The value that man sees in human life is shown in the number of abortions and euthanasia and in the spiral of crimes of murder and abuse.

God's eyes fail no one. Sometimes we overlook people or neglect people or try to avoid people or have nothing to do with some "kinds" of people. Not so Jesus!
- In the time of Jesus children were overlooked. In fact, even the disciples thought Jesus had no time for children and even tried to scare them away. But Jesus said, "Do not forbid little children to come to me, for theirs is the kingdom of God." Jesus always had time for children and He loved them.
-People who hated others, like Zacchaeus, whom Jesus saw and loved.

Most people didn't like Zacchaeus for who he was and what he was, and wanted as little to do with him as possible; but Jesus called him and even went home with him to a communal meal.
-People with physical diseases, such as blind, crippled, lepers, Jesus saw. He saw people with mental illnesses. He saw both the down and the up and the up and the up.
-He saw the spiritual outcast. Like the father of the prodigal son, whose eyes were always looking for his son and when he saw him, ran to him and treated him with great love and care. His eyes are always looking for those to love.
- God loves each of us as if there were only one of us to love.

In fact, Jesus said that "whoever" believes in him can be saved. "Whoever" means any race, any language, any nationality.

-1. John 2:2; Room. 10:13

I'm happy today and the son shines bright,
And clouds have been rolled away;
For the Redeemer said who will
May come with Him to stay.

O what wonderful love, O what divine grace,
That Jesus should die for me;
I was exalted and freed from sin,
His blood healed me.

"Whoever" surely means me, surely means me,
O sure means me; "Whoever" certainly means me,
"Whoever" means me!

III. The Bonds of God's Love

How do you bind yourself to God's love? Two words are crucial:
Believe and receive.
-It is so simple: Believe and you will receive.
- If you and I had to work for our salvation or earn our salvation, many of us would never have eternal life. We could not meet the requirements.
- "Whoever" can believe. Everyone can believe: adults and children alike; smart people and slow people alike; rich people and poor people alike; sympathetic people and people who are difficult to get along with.
- If you believe with your heart that Jesus died for your sin and that He was buried and that He rose again on the third day, and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord of your life, you will be saved.
- Only in this way will you ever be bound to His redeeming love.

If you don't want to commit yourself to God's love, you will experience something eternally uncomfortable. Jesus said you would perish.
- The word perish does not mean annihilation, but to be abandoned to final ruin and misery and fate in hell.

- The most terrible thing that can happen to anyone is that they live their whole life without a relationship with the Lord, and then they die and go to hell! John 8:24

Nothing in this world or in eternity beyond can compare to dying in your sins without Jesus Christ! Why?
-Because of what the Bible says to those who die without Him - 2 Thess. 1:8-9
- There is no more terrifying thought than the thought of going to hell forever with no hope of salvation or redemption.
- The truth is this: if you go to hell, you will go because you didn't trust Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.
-It won't be God's fault. You will blame no one but yourself. There will be no one to point the finger at. The blame will fall squarely on your shoulders
- If you leave this world without Jesus, you will one day stand before God and be judged for your sins - Rev. 20:11-15

IV. The price of God's love

We are not destined to live here forever. Those who are saved will enjoy "eternal life."
-You can never die! Because they know Jesus, they know the Prince of life and live forever and ever.

V. The cries of God's love

Nothing causes deeper hurt or pain than rejected love—in marriage, in family, or toward God.
How it breaks God's heart when we reject His Son and His offer of love. When we reject God's love, we reject His only hope of salvation.

In 1929, after the stock market crash, John Griffith took his wife and little boy and a few meager belongings in an old car and got a job tending to one of those big, giant bridges that crossed the mighty Mississippi. After being at work for a while, he brought his 8-year-old son Greg to work for the first time to see what daddy was up to all day. The little boy was wide-eyed with excitement and clapping his hands with joy as the huge bridge went up at the signal and call of his mighty father. He watched in amazement as the huge boats made their way down the Mississippi.
It was twelve o'clock and his father was building the bridge. No trains were due for quite a while, and they walked a few hundred feet on a catwalk out over the river to a viewing platform. They sat down, opened their brown bag and started eating their lunch. His father told him about some of the strange, distant lands that some of these ships would visit. That delighted the boy.
Time flew by and suddenly the whistle of a distant train brought them back to reality in an instant. John Griffith checked his watch quickly. He saw that it was time for the 1:07, the 400-passenger Memphis Express, which would be hurtling across that bridge in just a few minutes. He knew he had just enough time, so without panic but quickly he told his son to stay where he was.
He jumped to his feet, jumped to the catwalk, ran back, climbed the ladder to the control room, went inside, put his hand on the huge lever that controlled the bridge, looked up and down the river to see if boats were coming , as was his wont, and then looked down to see if there were any under the bridge.

And suddenly he saw a sight that made his blood run cold and his heart jump in his throat. His boy! His boy had tried to follow him into the control room and had fallen into the huge gear box that contained the monstrous gears that powered this massive bridge. His left leg was pinched between the two main gears, and the father knew that as surely as the sun would rise in the morning when he pulled that lever, his son would be crushed amidst eight tons of howling, grinding steel.
His eyes filled with tears of panic. His thoughts swirled. What could he do? There in the control room he saw a rope. He could dash down the ladder and out of the catwalk, tie off the rope, lower himself down, free his son, climb back up the rope, run back to the control room, and lower the bridge. As soon as his mind did this exercise, he knew - he knew there wasn't time for that. He would never make it, and there were 400 people on that train.
Suddenly he heard the whistle again, this time frighteningly closer. And he could hear the click of the locomotive wheels on the tracks, and he could hear the fast puffing of the train. What could he do? What could he do? There were 400 people, but that was... that was his son, that was his only son. He was a father! He knew what he had to do, so he buried his head in his arm and pushed the gear forward.
The great bridge slowly lowered into place just as the express rumbled across it. He lifted his tear-smeared face and looked straight into the gleaming windows of this train as they sped by one by one. He saw men reading the afternoon papers, a uniformed conductor glancing at a large pocket watch, ladies sipping tea from teacups, and small children pushing long spoons into plates of ice cream. Nobody, nobody looked down at the big gear.
In heartbreaking agony, he banged on the control room window and said, "What's the matter with you people? Do not you care? I sacrificed my son for you. Doesn't anyone of you care?” Nobody looked. Nobody heard. Nobody paid attention. The train disappeared across the river. Sometimes I wonder if the Lord is asking the same questions as these.

Make your choice
Johannes 3:16-21

Remember that Jesus is still talking to Nicodemus about his rebirth.
1. Jesus begins by telling Nicodemus that he has a great need in his life. He must be born again.
-He needs a second birth. He was born physically, but he was never born spiritually, and he must become so.
- As religious as Nicodemus was, he knew something was missing in his life. Jesus told him what was missing was spiritual life.
- This is what is missing from the lost man's life today, and until he receives spiritual life from God he will not be able to see or understand spiritual things from God.
- Not only will he not be able to understand spiritual things until he is born again, he will not be able to enter the kingdom of God.

2. Then Jesus tells him that being born again is a must. He cannot go to heaven without being personally born again.

3. Then Jesus tells him how to be born again.
- The wind of the Holy Spirit awakens him in his distress and then points him to the only One who can give him eternal life.
-Jesus reminds him of an O.T. Case. The people of Israel died from snake bites. God's instruction was that a bronze serpent, one resembling the deadly serpent, be hung on a stake, and all who looked on would live, believing that God would reward the faith in watching. It was by their faith; their belief that this would bring them healing. Believe and receive.

4. Now Jesus gives Nicodemus a new concept. The Jews believed that when the Messiah came, he would come in judgment and condemnation.
-Jesus corrects his thinking. Jesus tells him that when the Messiah came, he would come in love and light. That was how he would be born the first time. When he came the second time, he would come to judge.
-John 12:47; Luke 19:10; I'm Tim. 1:15; John 3:17; 1. John 4:1

Notice John 5:26-27 Now notice the word "also"
-One of our Lord's responsibilities WILL BE TO Judge the world ONE DAY - note John 5:22
- What our verse means is that judgment was not Jesus' priority when He came the FIRST time. Redemption was his priority. Although he will one day judge the earth, the priority of his first coming was not to be the judge but to save.
-God's heart is that people be saved – 2 Peter 3:9; I Tim 2:3-4
(The word desire speaks of God's will, His desire, what He delights in and loves).

If you look at John 3:16-21, God says that every human being has to - has to - make a choice. We are presented with two alternatives. They are the same two choices that the very first man and woman (Adam and Eve) faced. They are the same alternative that the last person born on this earth will face. You have to choose:
. Life or death . condemnation or justification
. light or darkness. acceptance or rejection

Make a choice: what will you do with Jesus?

Choose light and you will not be judged; If you don't choose a light, you're already doomed.

Notice John 3:18-21 again

The man who comes to the light is not judged and will never be judged.
-The believer is saved. He is just as guilty as the unbeliever, but there is one crucial difference: the believer believes in Jesus Christ and has entrusted his life to him.
- The believer seeks Christ actively and conscientiously. He is exempt from condemnation because he believes in Christ.
-John 5:24; Room. 8:1

The saved person loves the light, but the lost person loathes the light.
- The saved person loves the light because the saved person wants to do better and be better than they are. He wants to be like the light, the Lord Jesus.
-Jesus said: "I AM the light of the world" and then He said: "You are the light of the world".

have you ever thought about it Sometimes it's great to feel bad about coming to church? The light shows you that you need to make some corrections or some things that will result in you becoming more like Christ.
-People who really want to change for the better are not afraid of a little light. Instead, they welcome it. Light reveals hidden things, things that need to change.

EVEN if the saved person is not condemned, there is some form of condemnation or judgment that should constantly take place as the redeemed responds to the light.
-Let's say here is a young man who is going on a big date. He wants to do his best for his date. But he's late from work and has just enough time to get ready for his big date. He goes into the bathroom, turns on the light and stands in front of the mirror. What does he see in the mirror? Maybe he sees something he needs to "fix". His hair is a mess. His clothes are wrinkled. His breath is a little offensive. What does he do with what he sees in the mirror? His judgment of himself determines what he wants to do better.

This phrase Jesus uses, “shall not be condemned,” means that the saved person is pardoned, acquitted, justified, cleared of all guilt, freed from the curse of a broken law, no longer counted as a sinner, but considered perfectly righteous in sight of God and will not be condemned on the last day.

But what about the one who doesn't believe in Jesus? He's already sentenced. What does that mean?

1. It means that the future judgment of the unbeliever is as certain as if it had already happened unless he is saved.

2. The unbeliever is already under the present curse of sin. He is without Christ, a stranger from God's people, a stranger to the promises of God, and without hope.

3. The unbeliever is already guilty of every sin he has ever committed.

He is guilty primarily of not believing in God's divine Son who was given as the great remedy for man's sin.

He is condemned because he loves the dark. He loves his sin and doesn't want to turn around and face the conviction of the light. He is uncomfortable and hates the light.

A mouse was caught in a mousetrap, but he was caught by his hind leg. He was caught and died, but they found him still nibbling on cheese. That's just like a sinful man. He knows the drugs, the drink, the immorality is killing him, but he continues with his sin.

Some are so hardened in their sin that they prefer the dark ways and eternal death.
- When the Bastille, a castle-like prison in Paris, was about to be destroyed in 1789, a convict was brought out who had been imprisoned in one of its gloomy cells for many years. But instead of happily welcoming his freedom, he asked to be taken back. It had been so long since he had seen the sun that his eyes could not bear its brightness. His only wish was to die in the gloomy dungeon where he had been a prisoner.

God loves you so much that he gave his son so you wouldn't have to live under his condemnation and wrath.
- Someone misquoted John 3:16 but got it right when he said: ...should not perish but have an inward life.

In 1929, after the stock market crash, John Griffith took his wife and little boy and a few meager belongings in an old car and got a job tending to one of those big, giant bridges that crossed the mighty Mississippi. After being at work for a while, he brought his 8-year-old son Greg to work for the first time to see what daddy was up to all day. The little boy was wide-eyed with excitement and clapping his hands with joy as the huge bridge went up at the signal and call of his mighty father. He watched in amazement as the huge boats made their way down the Mississippi.
It was twelve o'clock and his father was building the bridge. No trains were due for quite a while, and they walked a few hundred feet on a catwalk out over the river to a viewing platform. They sat down, opened their brown bag and started eating their lunch. His father told him about some of the strange, distant lands that some of these ships would visit. That delighted the boy.
Time flew by and suddenly the whistle of a distant train brought them back to reality in an instant. John Griffith checked his watch quickly. He saw that it was time for the 1:07, the 400-passenger Memphis Express, which would be hurtling across that bridge in just a few minutes. He knew he had just enough time, so without panic but quickly he told his son to stay where he was.
He jumped to his feet, jumped to the catwalk, ran back, climbed the ladder to the control room, went inside, put his hand on the huge lever that controlled the bridge, looked up and down the river to see if boats were coming , as was his wont, and then looked down to see if there were any under the bridge. And suddenly he saw a sight that froze his blood and
made his heart jump in his throat. His boy! His boy had tried to follow him into the control room and had fallen into the huge gear box that contained the monstrous gears that powered this massive bridge.

His left leg was pinched between the two main gears, and the father knew that as surely as the sun would rise in the morning when he pulled that lever, his son would be crushed amidst eight tons of howling, grinding steel.
His eyes filled with tears of panic. His thoughts swirled. What could he do? There in the control room he saw a rope. He could dash down the ladder and out of the catwalk, tie off the rope, lower himself down, free his son, climb back up the rope, run back to the control room, and lower the bridge. As soon as his mind did this exercise, he knew - he knew there wasn't time for that. He would never make it, and there were 400 people on that train.
Suddenly he heard the whistle again, this time frighteningly closer. And he could hear the click of the locomotive wheels on the tracks, and he could hear the fast puffing of the train. What could he do? What could he do? There were 400 people, but that was... that was his son, that was his only son. He was a father! He knew what he had to do, so he buried his head in his arm and pushed the gear forward.
The great bridge slowly lowered into place just as the express rumbled across it. He lifted his tear-smeared face and looked straight into the gleaming windows of this train as they sped by one by one. He saw men reading the afternoon papers, a uniformed conductor glancing at a large pocket watch, ladies sipping tea from teacups, and small children pushing long spoons into plates of ice cream. Nobody, nobody looked down at the big gear.
In heartbreaking agony, he banged on the control room window and said, "What's the matter with you people? Do not you care? I sacrificed my son for you. Doesn't anyone of you care?” Nobody looked. Nobody heard. Nobody paid attention. The train disappeared across the river. Sometimes I wonder if the Lord is asking the same questions as these.

The preacher who lost his church
Johannes 3:22-36

Before reading the passage:

Let me give you a quote from Jesus and see if you know who he is talking about: "Verily,
I tell you, among those born of woman none became greater than ________.” John the Baptist (Matthew 11:11)

If you didn't already know that, would John the Baptist have been your first choice?
+What about Moses...or David...or Noah...or Isaiah.
+ John the Baptist really doesn't seem to fit the picture.
. Most churches would not call him a pastor.
. He was wearing funny looking clothes - camel hair and a leather belt; he was barely dressed for success.
. He had a strange diet - locusts (bugs) and honey.
. He was a straight man - he called the important religious leaders serpents.
. He lived alone in the wilderness.
Why did Jesus say this about John the Baptist? I think that was because John did his job better than anyone else could have done...and he did it with joy.

Read the section

There are two scenes in John 3:
(1) John 3:1-21 - The focus is on Nicodemus
(2) In John 3:22-36 the focus was on John the Baptist
John the Baptist was the forerunner of Jesus, a task that had three main functions:
● Clearing the Way – Removing obstacles from the minds and hearts of others so that they will be ready for the Messiah.
● Prepare the way - encourage the repentance of the nation so that it will be accepted.
● And get out of the way - Step aside after the Messiah was introduced...that was the hardest part of his job description...That's why Jesus called him a great man.

Now Jesus does something strange from a human point of view... He moves from the city, where many people live, to the countryside... to the domain of John the Baptist.
• In fact, he is only about 20 miles from John and stays there for about eight months.
• Why would Jesus do this? Two reasons:
1. Because there is much water there - John 3:23 This is not the last time there has been controversy over baptism.
I could spend a lot of time as a Baptist talking about the abundance of water and the right way to be baptized—but I won't.
2. He stayed there - 8 months - with his disciples John 3:22b
He was with them and poured his life into them.
DL Moody said, "I'd rather train ten men to do the job than the work of ten men."

I. John's Hearers 3:25-26

-“Rabbi, your star is fading. Your service is declining. What are we going to do?"
- "Hey preacher, you have to do something! Attendance has fallen sharply and we are losing a lot of members to this new church down the road.”

• Sound familiar? John's students felt the pressure of competition.
• The implication was that they would not allow John to take a backseat to anyone else.
• John rebuked them for thinking and saying such things.

-Look at the spirit of John's disciples:
1. Notice their sarcasm - John 3:25-26 - They wouldn't even use the name of Jesus. "He who was with you . . . to whom you can bear even one testimony."
2. Notice the exaggeration - John 3:26 - All go to Him... There was resentment at His success.

-There is an unfortunate competition among Christians.
-This is not the first time it has happened - Numbers 11:26-29; 12:3

II. Johns Demut

-John had a real sense of the sovereignty of God John 3:27
● John said that if Jesus attracted and won more people than he did, it was because God gave them to be his followers.
● Understanding God's sovereignty in leadership will keep us from being proud of our own imagined spiritual insights and accomplishments, and will keep us from being jealous of someone else's apparent success.
● I Cor. 4:7 Living Bible

- John knew who he was and what God had called him to do
- "I told you right away that I am not the Christ... just a voice... Forerunner."
- “I said: “I am not worthy to untie the thong of His shoes and to wash His feet; To do even this menial work for Christ.”
- "I am the groom's friend - The friend doesn't get the bride, the groom does... but I'm grateful for the role I played. The friend is like our best man... but he places the bride's hand in the groom's hand, signaling their unity. Perhaps today it would be more like the father of the bride saying, "Your mother and I give our daughter as the bridegroom's bride."
-Johannes 3:31-36

III. Johns Herz 3:30

What does that mean?
A little boy and his father walked past a high-rise construction site. He looked up at one of the tall buildings and said, "Dad, what are those little boys doing on top of the building?" The father said, "These aren't little boys. They only look small because they are so high up.”

The little boy said, "Well I bet when they get to heaven you won't be able to see them at all."

- When we catch the spirit of John 3:30, we always get the blessing. FB Meyer was ministering in London and was at the peak of his ministry when a 19-year-old began pastoring in the same city. People started flocking to hear the young man. Soon the young man filled the 5,000-seat building, and at the age of 20 they built him a 6,000-seat building. The young man's name was Spurgeon. Meyer first said he was jealous when he saw all the carriages pass his church to hear Spurgeon. Meyer said he was determined to pray for Spurgeon and his success. Two things happened:
1. He felt Spurgeon's success was his too; 2. He started getting the overflow from Spurgeon's church and his got refilled.

John ends with a cry of change that would startle anyone trying to cross the fence - John 3:36
- This verse is the conclusion of John the Baptist's testimony of Christ and has to do with the importance of believing in Christ.

He tells them and us that life or death, heaven or hell depend on whether we accept Christ or not.
- Like his Master, John teaches that "believing in the Son" is the way to heaven, and not believing is the way to hell.

Note the "presence" of salvation that is in Christ. John, like his Master, teaches that a believer "has" eternal life, peace, and forgiveness the moment he lays his sins on Jesus and puts his trust in Him.

Some condemn gospel ministers for speaking about God's wrath or even mentioning hell. But the last words of our Lord's forerunner heralded the danger of unbelief. John the Baptist's last words were to warn people of God's wrath.

Notice how John the Baptist glorifies Jesus. He calls him:
● The Christ—John 3:28
● The Bridegroom—John 3:29
● He comes from heaven and is above all - John 3:31
● He testified of all he saw and heard from heaven—John 3:32
● He was sent from God - John 3:34
● God gave him his spirit without measure—John 3:34
● The father loves the son—John 3:35
● The Father gave everything into his hands - John 3:35
● Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life—John 3:36

The bad Samaritan
Johannes 4:1-30

In John 20, John gives us his purpose in writing his gospel. He writes it so that we may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that by faith we could have life by his name.
- He shows us a number of people in different situations who entrusted Jesus as their personal savior.
● In John 3 he tells us about a MAN named Nicodemus who came to Jesus at night; In John 4 he tells us about an unnamed WOMAN who met Jesus at the hottest time of the day, at noon.
● In John 3 he tells us about a morally lost religious man respected by all; in John 4 he tells us of a moral outcast who was looked down on, especially by all the women of her town.

The first three verses of John 4 tell us that Jesus and his disciples are leaving Judea and going to Galilee.
-Jesus left because of a rumor that caused conflict between the disciples of John the Baptist and the disciples of Jesus. John's disciples thought that Jesus was trying to eclipse John because people left John's ministry and were now following Jesus. Of course, John the Baptist did not feel that way. In fact, John said, "He must increase and I must decrease," but to end the conflict, Jesus went to another place to minister.

Notice John 4:4 "And he (Jesus) MUST go through Samaria." Why? Why does Jesus MUST go through Samaria? Because Jesus was following a divine plan given by his Father and he was also following a divine timetable.

Jesus lived with a divine imperative:
● Luke 2:49 “I must take care of my father's business”
● Luke 4:43 “I must preach the kingdom of God”
● Luke 9:22 “The Son of man must suffer much”
● John 9:4 “I must work the works of him that sent me.”
● John 3:14 "So must the Son of Man be exalted."
- Now Jesus must “necessarily go through Samaria”.

Why? Because Jesus had a divine appointment with a Samaritan woman.

Let me say a word about the Samaritans. In Luke 10 we can read of one we call the good Samaritan, but here in John 4 we find a bad Samaritan.

Why did the Jews hate the Samaritans so much? They felt that the Jews would be defiled if they walked on the land of the Samaritans. No Jew would drink from a Samaritan, otherwise they would be defiled. Why so much hate?
- When the enemies of our Lord wanted to offend him, they called him a demon-possessed Samaritan - John 8:48. Why did the Jews hate the Samaritans so much?

722 BC the Assyrians conquered the ten northern tribes. They carried with them the Jews who were the crème de la crème.

They left behind the poor, the handicapped, the inferior whom they considered worthless, but they brought some Assyrians to rule over them. God's law said there should never be intermarriage between Jews and Gentiles, but they should keep the Jewish race pure. But the Jews left behind intermarried with the Assyrians and were hated for it. They were called half-breeds and were outcasts. They were considered traitors. The Jews wanted nothing to do with them.

With that in mind, I want you to look at this Samaritan woman:

I. Encounter - John 4:5-9

Instead of circumnavigating Samaria like most Jews did, Jesus led his disciples right through the heart of Samaria. He and his disciples had been walking from Judea from early morning, and it was now noon (about the sixth hour) when they arrived at Jacob's well, a journey of about twenty miles.
-Jesus was tired from his journey, so he sat on the edge of the well and told his disciples to go into the city to buy some food and he would wait for them there.
- I know this almost sounds like a joke, but how many students does it take to buy groceries? The answer, of course, would be that just two or three students would have been enough to buy food for thirteen people. But Jesus had sent them all away.
-Maybe it was an act of mercy; for such a sinful Samaritan woman would have been too embarrassed to come out and draw water from a well while 10 or 12 Jewish men were surrounding the well if Jesus had brought up her past.
- In love and mercy Jesus sent the others away; to ensure that nothing stood in the way of this very important meeting at the well.

The Lord Jesus is the Master's personal soul winner. Watch Him win over this Samaritan outcast. He is our instructive example and he can teach us how to lead others to him.

Most of the women came to the well to draw water either early in the morning or late in the evening when it was cooler. But this not so nice woman came in the heat of the day. Better the scorching heat than the sharp remarks about it from the tongues of the "nice" women. This nameless woman has an appointment with divine destiny.

I see Jesus sitting on the edge of the well. He looks up and sees this woman walking towards him.
- She's not young, but she's not old either. There are unmistakable traces of beauty in the face and shape. Something else is unmistakable. There is a look of sadness, disappointment, dissatisfaction. What was in her heart was shown in her face.
-Your heart is full of emptiness. Her shameful past has led to dissatisfaction. She hates herself for what she has become.
-When she was young, she never dreamed that she would make such a mess of her life. She took one wrong step after another until she became what she is now.
- She tried to act like she didn't care, but she did. She didn't want to be a social outcast. She longed to be different, but has given up hope of being better.
– She has been married and divorced 5 times and is currently in an impasse living with a man in a relationship that is going nowhere. But right now she needs him. His presence fills the lonely night with a level of camaraderie, however superficial.

She sees a stranger sitting on the edge of the fountain. She can tell from his clothes that he is a Jew. She is glad that it is a man and that he is a Jew. It is unlawful for a Jew to speak to a woman in public, and Jews have nothing to do with Samaritans. She is safe! He won't talk to her.
-But he did! He asked her for a sip of water!

Look at our Lord's tactful approach to this woman. Jesus took the initiative to refer to them; and got the ball rolling. And what's interesting is that he started by introducing her to his own needs. He opened the door by asking them to do something for him and serve him.
- I think she saw the kindness and unexpected respect for her that she hadn't seen in other men. He seemed to appreciate her as a person.
- I think his request took the woman completely by surprise. It was so unusual that as she drew water from the well, dipped a cup into the bucket and handed it to him, she had to ask, "How come you're asking me for a drink?"
-Jesus breaks down the barriers of race, gender and soon religion.
Jesus didn't answer their question, but he piqued their curiosity without making them suspicious—note John 4:10
- “You came here for water. I have water that will satisfy you so that you will never have to draw water again.” He leads them step by step to saving faith.

Jesus said, "Oh, if you only knew! If only you knew! If only you knew! If you only knew what I could do for you and in you and through you - I could fill you with LIVING WATER!
-He said just enough to make her want to know more! I can see Jesus taking a sip of water as He says these words; sit and wait for those words to sink in.
- Note John 4:10-15 Note John 4:10 "If you had asked me, I would have given you living water." Oh, the simplicity of salvation. Salvation is asking God to save you and receiving salvation in return. Think about it! Salvation and heaven are available to you? Just ask Jesus with a humble, repentant heart and salvation is yours if you ask!

II. Exposure - John 4:15-29

Is Jesus Insensitive? Why bring up anything about her past? Is he trying to embarrass her? The answer is no.
-But his instruction to call her husband made her feel very uncomfortable. She doesn't go into detail, she simply says, "I don't have a husband."
- That was the truth, but it wasn't the whole truth. She knows, but what she doesn't know is that Jesus knows, too.
Jesus' words are a verbal slap in the face, and yet it was the most loving thing He could have done for her.
-There is an important spiritual principle at work here. Without the conviction of sin there can be no conversion.
-God sees behind the mask the reality within. Until we come to grips with our sin and willful disobedience to God, we cannot be saved.
-This woman could hide nothing from God; we neither. Hebrews 4:13

In John 4:26 Jesus first admitted that he was the Messiah.
-Between John 4:26 and 28 this woman faced her sin, gave up her sin and followed the Savior.
- She asked for living water and Jesus gave it to her. She drew with the bucket of faith and a fountain of joy sprang up in her.
Notice how her heart changed to the Lord. She begins by calling him a "Jew" (John 4:9), then "Lord" (John 4:11), then a "prophet" (John 4:19), then "the Christ the Savior" ( John 4:42).

What a change that took place in her life!

Song: It's No Mystery What God Can Do
What he has done for others, he will do for you.
With arms wide open, He will forgive you.
It's no mystery what God can do.

Song: "Like the woman at the well I sought
For things that cannot satisfy.
And then I heard the Savior say
Draw from My well that will never dry up.”

Fill my cup, Lord, I lift it up, Lord,
Come and quench this thirst of my soul
Bread of heaven, feed me until I don't want anymore,
Fill my cup, fill it and make me whole.”

Song: Only Jesus Can Satisfy Your Soul; and only he can
Change your heart and make yourself whole
He will never give you new peace; sweet love u
joy and heaven too.
Because only Jesus can satisfy your soul.

III. Evangelism John 4:28-30; 39-4

● She experienced something too beautiful to keep to herself. She had to tell someone.
● A personal testimony is powerful. Her eternity rested on this solo experience with Jesus. She knew if Jesus could save her, He could save anyone.
● She had wasted the best years of her life, but now she would share the best part of her life. She would testify what Jesus had done for her and people would believe.
● Has anyone ever believed because of your testimony—your testimony?
● Someone needs to hear you share what Christ has done in your life.

Are you thirsty? Is there a fountain of water in you?

Those who die without Christ will thirst forever—Luke 16:19ff

The invitation Jesus gave to this woman to receive living water is now extended to you.

It's harvest time
Johannes 4:31-42

The Gospel of John is a heartwarming book.
-Oh, John writes to tell us that Jesus is a deity; that he is the Son of God in the flesh—the Christ and the promised Messiah—but he writes that we “may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that by faith we might have life through his name.”

Jesus said, "I came to seek and to save that which was lost."
- The work of God is to reach lost people with the gospel of Jesus Christ and to win them to Christ through repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus.

Have you ever wondered why the Lord doesn't lead us to glory the moment we are saved? One reason is that we can share with others what Christ has done in our hearts since He saved us.

Let me share with you the two most embarrassing questions you can ask a Christian. do you know what they are
(1) When was the last time you led a soul to Christ?
(2) When was the last time you tried?

Someone said that the biggest sin we have in our church is silence.
- The greatest work of the Church is the work for the souls of men.

The Bible gives us at least two examples of what it's like to win souls:

(1) It's like farming

Matthew, Luke, and John all tell us that the harvest is plentiful and ready, but the laborers are few.
-Farming is hard work. The farmer has to clear the field, plow the ground, sow the seed, weed the field - and wait and wait.
- You can't rush the harvest, but once the harvest is done you can't wait any longer. You must drop everything and reap the harvest; if you don't, the crops will rot or spoil. You will have missed an opportunity and you may never be able to reap it. It is lost!

(2) It's like fishing

Jesus said he would make us fishers of men.
_To catch fish you have to go where the fish are. You cannot catch fish inside a building. In order to catch fish or people, you have to go after them.
_Then you need to use the right bait.
-Someone said that the church no longer fishes for men, we are now keeper of the aquarium!

Four things I want to share with you as we reflect on harvest time and the reaping of people's souls:

I. A surprising opportunity

Jesus said two things about the harvest: it is plentiful and it is ripe. This is an encouraging truth.
-Harvest time is what it's all about. Harvest time is the goal of the whole season. That's what you work for.
-What brings the greatest joy? Clear the country? plow the land? plant the seed? Waiting for the plants to break through the soil? NO! To harvest! Harvest!

The question isn't, "Is there a chance?" But, "Are we going to take the opportunity?"
- Billy Graham said that the evangelistic harvest is always urgent. People's fates are always being decided. We are not responsible for the past generation and we cannot bear full responsibility for the next, but God will hold us accountable for how well we discharge our responsibilities to this age and how we take advantage of our opportunities. We must be faithful soul winners because if we are not we are only a generation away from paganism.

-I heard about a sales manager who called his salespeople together to encourage them to have a bigger vision for their business. He had a large white billboard set up in the conference room, and in the center of that billboard he drew a black circle about the size of a quarter. He asked each of his vendors to come and tell him what they saw on the poster.

Well, the first said, “I see a black dot.” The second said, “I see a black dot.” The third said, “I see a black dot.” All thirty-five vendors in that room said the same thing, “I see a black dot.”
The sales manager looked at her for a moment and then said, "Isn't it strange that you all saw the black dot but none of you saw the white ring around it?"

We must lift our eyes and see that the fields are indeed white for harvest. I heard about a man who went to Africa to sell shoes. He had only been there a few days and wrote back to his employer and said, 'Take me home. You made a terrible mistake. People here don't wear shoes.” So they brought him home. Not long after, a man came and applied to the same company. He was told, "The only place we have to send you is Africa." He said, "I will go." They sent him to where the other seller had been. After a few days he wrote back and said: "Send me all the shoes you can get. I've never seen so many prospects."
-It all depends on how you see things.

II. That Satanic Opposition

Why don't we try to win people to the Lord more than we do? I think the greatest resistance to soul winning is our lack of passion for lost souls.
-Psalm 126:5-6 We are to sow continually and continually.
-One of the great sins in the Church is the sin of silence.
D.L.Moody spoke to an atheist. The atheist said to Moody, "You know I don't believe in God. You say you and other Christians do. You know I don't believe in heaven and hell. You say you and other Christians do. I don't think Christians really believe in hell. If I believed in the kind of hell you believe in, I would, if necessary, get on my hands and knees over broken, burning glass to reach a soul and try to keep him from going there."

We must ask the Lord to increase our passion for the lost.

Kindle my soul Lord for the lost in sin, give me a passion while I try to win; Help me not to falter, never let me fail, fill me with your spirit, let your will prevail.
Kindle my soul, Lord, kindle my soul, make my life a witness to Your saving power. Millions grope in the dark, awaiting your word, set my soul on fire, Lord, set my soul on fire.

III. A grim observation

"There are few workers," why is that? Feldwort - soul gain - is not a glamorous work. It is often lonely, hard, exhausting, slow work. It requires us to rearrange our priorities.

IV. A Solemn Commitment - John 4:35-38

In John 4:35, Jesus says that when you plant wheat or corn, it takes about four months for the fruit to be ready for harvest. But when you harvest men, there are always some ready to be harvested. Some can be harvested earlier than others.
- This woman had accepted Christ, returned to her hometown and told the men there what had happened in her life and that she believed that Jesus was the coming Messiah. Then she invited them to come and see Jesus with their own eyes. They had seen the change in their lives; now she tells them that Jesus can change their lives too.

When Jesus said, “Lift up your eyes and look at the fields; for they are already white to reap,” many Bible Students believe that Jesus looked up to see the woman and many Samaritan men following her. Samaritan men often wore white robes with white headgear. The scene looked like a field of ripe corn coming towards them.

Another thing Jesus says is that there will be a common joy in heaven among all who have labored for Christ when the full harvest of saved souls is finally brought in.
- A day will come when all who have worked for Christ in any way, whether by sowing or reaping, will sit down and rejoice together for all eternity.
- Here in this world the sower sometimes does not live to see the fruits of his labor, and the reaper who brings in the harvest rejoices alone. But the work done in the spiritual harvest is everlasting work, and both sower and reaper are sure to "rejoice together" and see the fruits of their labor.
-In heaven there will be no jealousy and envy among the workers of Christ. Some were sowers and some were reapers, but all will have done their part and eventually rejoice together.
- In the work for Christ there are both sowers and reapers. The work of the reaper draws much more attention than the work of the sower; However, it is clear that if there were no sowing, there would be no harvest - it is important for us to remember.
- The church often gives undue honor to the reapers of Christ and overlooks the work of the sowers of Christ.

Notice John 4:36 - we are not to do what we do for Christ for wages or reward. We are to do what we do because we love the Lord Jesus.

But when we do what we do for love of Jesus, He rewards us and God pays top wages.

May I ask you a question Charles Hadden Spurgeon asked: "If someone offered you a thousand dollars for every soul you reached for Christ, would you try harder than you do now when the reward is an everlasting crown?"
-John 4:37-38 Says two things: (1) No witness is ever wasted; (2) No worker is ever worthless

John 4:37 And in this the proverb is true: One sows, and another reaps.
John 4:38 I sent you to reap that on which you labored not; other people have worked and you will be included in their work.

How do we become part of the sowers or the reapers? Jesus sums it up in one word: Pray! The church should ask the Lord of the harvest to send workers to his harvest fields.
- If we really pray that God will send workers into His field, we - those who pray - will take upon ourselves the burden of being the ones going into God's fields.

Jesus said we should ask the Lord of the harvest to "send out" laborers.
-The Greek word conveys a very strong image. The word means "eject". This is where our English word "ballistic" comes from, which refers to the explosion that occurs when the hammer of a pistol hits a bullet and it is ejected from the gun. We are to pray that God will kindle a fire in the Church that will ignite a movement in many hearts that will result in people being "nudged."
out “out of the church into the harvest fields of the world. We must pray that God will throw some people out of the church.


An exposé of legalism
Johannes 5:8-18

Before reading the passage:

The miracles in the Gospel of John are called "signs" or "miracles of signs." Of all the miracles Jesus performed, John chose seven that showed that Jesus was the Messiah...God came in the flesh and that by believing in Him one could have eternal life.
-Some of the sign-miracles in John are a platform for one of our Lord's discourses.
. In John 6, Jesus fed the 5,000...then he gave his talk about being the bread of heaven.
. Here in John 5 Jesus heals a man who had been paralyzed for 38 years followed by a discourse on legalism using the Sabbath day as evidence of their legalism.

Let me tell the miracle again: At the Pool of Bethesda, which means House of Mercy, there was a great gathering of the sick. They were at the pool believing that an angel would trouble the water and the first person in the water would be healed. Jesus saw this man who had been sick for 38 years and asked him a strange question: "Do you want to get well?" Then Jesus said: "Get up, take your bed and go." The man did; he was healed and Jesus left. But shortly thereafter, the Pharisees condemned the man and Jesus because it happened on the Sabbath.

Read the section

Everywhere you go today, Jesus Christ is being tested in people's hearts and minds.
● You and I cannot be neutral towards Jesus. Jesus said we are either with him or against him. We cannot be neutral.
● He is being tried by some here in your hearts today.

This miracle in John 5 has two foci: one is the miracle itself and the other is legalism.

In this study, I want us to see legalism exposed; to expose the danger of legalism.

I. The Importance of Legalism

- Legalists measure spiritual growth by a standard of rules - not from the Bible, but from their own personal list of do's and don'ts.
- They use these lists to rate people in terms of their spirituality.
-The Pharisees are the grandfathers of legalism.

Let me ask and answer three questions about legalism:

A. What is legalism?
● Legalism corresponds to a code of conduct for the purpose of self-exaltation.
● Legalists create a list of do's and don'ts based not on Scripture but on tradition or personal preference; then they judge themselves and others on their performance. In short, it is “Christianity Checklist.

● When we lift the veil of legality, we find hypocrisy instead of holiness, for its purpose is to exalt oneself.
● Some of the most wicked people in God's family are legalists.

B. How does legalism arise?
● Gal. 2:4 says false brethren creep in to spy on our freedom in Christ and bring us into bondage.
● The legalist thinks that when you talk about freedom in Christ, you are condoning licentious living or giving someone license to sin.

C. Why is legalism wrong?
● Legalism is primarily unbiblical. Grace and freedom are the hallmarks of the Christian life, not law and bondage.
● John 8:32 “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
● Rom. 8:1-4
Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death.
Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do, being weak in the flesh, God sent his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin he condemned sin in the flesh:
Romans 8:4 so that the righteousness of the law may be fulfilled in us who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

● Gal. 5:1
Gal 5:1 Stand firm, therefore, in the liberty with which Christ set us free, and be not ensnared again in the yoke of bondage.
● Second, it promotes the flesh of Rome. 8:8
Romans 8:8 So those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
• The main difference between living under law and living under grace is the motivation to obey God's commandments.
• The Israelites received the Mosaic Law and its more than 600 commandments. They were motivated to obey by FEAR and empowered only by the FLESH. Today believers in Christ receive grace and although the N.T. Contains hundreds of commands, we are motivated by LOVE and empowered by the HOLY SPIRIT.
• What motivates your obedience to Christ—law and fear or the grace and love now offered to us?

D. Legalism is based on pride
• “I” and “self-righteousness” are the pillars that support legalism.
• One trait that reveals a legalist is criticism.
• His best friend is a mirror! He likes himself! His standards are right, and if you don't live up to his standards and list, he will condescend to you and make you feel guilty for not living up to his standards.
• I have told you that they are the most evil people in the church, but they are also the most obnoxious.
- Tell about a man at KFC who had a sign on the van: "I Am Saved"... he was loud, overbearing and wanted everyone to know how spiritual he was.

-Rob Pelkey ​​at BMC...would testify to you right away-or if you didn't drop a hat. I don't know anyone he won to the Lord. I know a lot about him running away and not being able to hold a church anymore. He presented himself as a yardstick against which to measure oneself.

II. The Threat of Legalism John 5:8-18

-Here was a man who was healed after 38 years of illness. You'd think they'd be happy. But they said, 'Make your bed up. Lie back on your back. This is the Sabbath.”
-Here is a difference between the Sabbath and Sunday. The Sabbath was given under the law; Sunday was given under grace.
- God gave the Jews the Sabbath as a sign - never to the Gentiles.
• Ex. 20:8-11; 31:12-17
• The Sabbath ended—Col. 2:14-17 (Note: Shadows—I have a picture of my wife, but I don't look at it when I'm with her because she's the real thing. Jesus is the fulfillment from the Sabbath)
• The Jews were not only satisfied with the law of the Sabbath. They added 39 rules to the law that was supposed to be a ban on trade and traces for the Jews (Jer. 17:21-22, 27; Neh. 9:13-14). For example:
(1) Looking in the mirror was forbidden on the Sabbath - the reason? If you looked in the mirror on the Sabbath day and saw a gray hair, you might be tempted to pluck it out to work on the Sabbath.
(2) You could not wear false teeth on the Sabbath, for if they fell out you would have to pick them up and be doing work.
(3) You could not wear a handkerchief on the Sabbath, but you could wear one.
(4) They even discussed a man with a wooden leg, because if his house caught fire he could carry his wooden leg out of the house on the Sabbath.
(5) One could spit on the Sabbath, but one had to watch where one spat. If you spit on the earth and then scrape it off with your sandal, you would be cultivating the earth and doing work. Spirituality could be determined by where you spit.

Back to the miracle - They got the man to carry a burden on the Sabbath.

Now, before you poke fun at the Pharisees for their list making, I know people under grace who have transferred the Pharisees' Sabbath codes to the Sunday Grace people.
• I know people who say you can't go to the beach on Sundays...or go to the movies (TV is fine)...or play ball on Sundays...or eat at a restaurant where they serve beer...well, skip you that.

Are there things we shouldn't do on Sunday?
• Is it wrong to ____, hunt fish, play ball, go camping? Anything that keeps you from full worship should not be done on Sunday. This includes staying in bed all day.
• Second, if you are doing something that would be a stumbling block for a weaker brother, you should not do it.

Now, what did Jesus do when the Pharisees scolded him for healing on the Sabbath?
• Did he bow his head, tuck his hands into his robe and say, "I'll never do it again?"
• NO! He confronted her. He would not tolerate her intolerance.
• The only people Jesus ever spoke harshly to were the people who had all the answers.

*Note John 5:17
John 5:17 But Jesus answered them, My Father works until now, and I work.
. Go back to creation in Gen. 1. After each of the six days it says that "the evening and the morning were the ___ day." But when it comes to the seventh day, it doesn't say - why? For on the seventh day He continued to work - He controlled the universe. I'm glad he didn't stop working!
. In this sense, neither God the Father broke the Sabbath nor did Jesus. But that worried them all the more because He was claiming that God was His Father!

III. Mastering Legalism

- There are three levels of spiritual maturity – Thou shalt not...Thou shalt...Thou.

When we try to add to grace, we destroy it - works, baptism, church.
- A farmer had a legalistic neighbor. He couldn't get him to see that trying to add to grace was destroying grace. He had him build a wooden gate. When he delivered it, the farmer took an ax and started cutting the gate. The neighbor said, "It's perfect the way it is." "No, I have to add something." It was ruined when he finished adding cuts to the gate. If we try to add to grace, we ruin it!

The miracle that killed Jesus
Johannes 5:1-18

As we read the text when we come to John 5:3b-4, your Bible may not contain these verses. The earliest and best Greek manuscripts do not contain the words "Waiting for the movement of the water." For an angel descended into the pool at a appointed time and troubled the waters: whoever then entered first after troubled the waters was healed of every disease that he had.” Only the KJV and NKJV record these words, and then some KJV footnote that these words are not found in the best text.

How do you explain that? These words were first given as a footnote to explain John 5:7, which says the water was "troubled." It was later added as if it were part of the text. Some writer included these words to show THESE PEOPLE BELIEVE THAT AN ANGEL GROWS THIS WATER AND GIVES IT HIS HEALING POWERS.
- We know that this pool was fed by an intermittent spring and the water flowed into this pool at certain intermittent times and when it did it caused a little bubbling and people believed that this was the material that held the healing power had.
-We don't know what gave the water its healing powers. It may have been like the mineral springs or hot springs that bring relief to people today, or if God wanted to send an angel he could have done it.
- To say this does not mean that I do not believe in the infallibility of Scripture, for I assure you that I do. Whether or not it belongs in Scripture is not worth discussing. For me it is not the essential because there is something much more important here. However, I wanted to give this word of explanation.

=============================================== =====================
There are some expressions or slang terms that come from the Bible that most people didn't know came from the Bible.
• When we speak of someone who is ignorant, we can say: “He cannot even distinguish his right hand from his left.” This proverb actually comes from Jonah 4:11
• Sometimes we say, “I narrowly escaped.” This phrase is found at Job 19:20.

Then there are some sayings that we attribute to the Bible that are not found in the Bible. How:
• "Spare the rod and spoil the child."
• or this one: “God helps those who help themselves.” Actually, the exact opposite is the case. God helps those who cannot help themselves.

-That is the nature of salvation. God does for us what we cannot do ourselves.
Rom. 5:6

Here's a man who hasn't had any strength for 38 years. This man who has no power is about to meet the Almighty.

This is an important miracle because it marks the turning point in the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus. From this point on, Jesus faces increasing hostility and unbelief, culminating in the religious leaders taking him to Calvary and nailing him to the cross.

As we look at this miracle that killed Jesus I want you to see:

I. The Compassion of Jesus - John 5:1-6

Bethesda was not a small pool like a swimming pool. It was a huge double basin with five pillars covered by a roof to shade the sick.

It really is a depressing, pathetic picture. It was little more than a human dumping ground for sick people. All around the pool were a multitude of miserable sick people with all kinds of diseases. Some were blind; others were lame. Many were "impotent," meaning "powerless."
-Here was this man who had some kind of ailment for 38 years, almost four decades. He has a very serious and debilitating illness.

It is by the Pool of Bethesda. The name "Bethesda" means "House of Mercy". That's what all these people needed - mercy.
- But for this man it was not a house of grace, but a house of misery, because in all the time he was there, others made it into the pond before him. Again and again his dream of being the first in the pool was dashed and again and again he was disappointed and had to lug his broken body back onto his old cot and wait for another period of disappointment.

This is a sad picture of the lost sinner in his helplessness, hopelessness, brokenness, blindness and uselessness before the Lord.
-Although a lost person may be healthy in body, they are sick in soul and separated from God.
- In the soul of the lost there is the sickness of perverted pleasures, forbidden thoughts of pleasure, secret thoughts of revenge, bitter thoughts of malice toward others, and petty thoughts of jealousy.

Now look at our compassionate, merciful Savior - John 5:5-6

Did you notice that Jesus knew everything about this man before he even spoke to him? He knew what was wrong with him and that he had been there a long time; nevertheless, Jesus stretched out his hand. What a wonderful picture of grace.

May I point out that there were many sick people, but Jesus only took care of this one man.
- It is not God's will to heal every sick person. I point this out because some teach that God will heal any disease IF you have enough faith.
- The same people teach that if you are sick and ask Him to heal you and He does not heal you, it is because you did not have enough faith. I know some of God's children who feel guilty because they asked God to heal them and they are still sick and they think it's because they don't have enough faith. This is not the case and the Bible does not teach it either.

It wasn't this man's faith that healed him. He had no faith in Jesus. In fact, we are told in John 5:13 that he didn't even know who Jesus was.
- It wasn't faith that healed this man; it was the sovereign will of God that healed him.
-His faith did not produce his healing; his healing produced his faith!

Someone said that God heals ALL His saints: He heals some down here; some he heals up there.

At John 5:6, Jesus asked this man what seemed a stupid question. "Do you want to be done well?" It may sound like a stupid question, but Jesus never asks stupid questions.
-The truth is, some people enjoy ill health. They like to tell you how bad things are for them. Their illness is part of their identity. If they get well, it would take away the attention and sympathy they get. Some would lose the good living they get from the government if they get well. You would have to go to work and take responsibility in life. It would take away their excuse for being lazy. They would have preferred to live off other people.
-John 5:7 seems to indicate that this man was there.
What Jesus is really saying is, "Do you really want to be changed?"

Let me ask you, "Do you want to get sane? Do you really want your sin to be cleansed? Eliminated your guilt? Broken that habit? Has your anger gone? Your bitterness uprooted? Restored that relationship?”
- Jesus deals with the will of this man. Jesus knows that one of the greatest obstacles to our faith is often our unwillingness to be healed.
- The problem with many lost people is not that they do not know how to be saved; The problem is her will. They are not willing to give up their sin; or they just don't want to be saved. They are comfortable in their sin. You don't want to change.

II. The challenge of Jesus - John 5:8-9

Don't miss two things:
● The last part of 5:9 says, “And on that day was the Sabbath day.” Jesus intentionally healed this man on the Sabbath day. Yet Jesus knew what Ex. 20:8-11 said.

● Jesus asked the healed man to do something he knew would provoke a response from religious leaders—“take up your bed and go.” Clue 5:10

III. The criticism of Jesus - John 5:10-18

Jesus intentionally did things on the Sabbath to get a reaction from religious leaders. Why? Was he just doing it to make her hate him?
- No, but He had to meet them at their point of need before they could even accept or reject Him.

(Video) The Persuasive Life | 2 Corinthians | Austin Ridge Bible Church

Jesus knew that He would die for the sins of man. That's why he came into the world.

Two things would kill Jesus:

(1) He would oppose legalism.
(2) He proclaimed himself God, like his father. John 5:18

(1) He confronted legalism

- Paul says in 2 Cor. 3:6 “The letter (of the law) kills (man's inability to keep the law
him to eternal death), but the Spirit (the Holy Spirit) gives life (only Jesus Christ, through the agency of the Holy Spirit, can bring forth eternal life in one who believes).

Exodus 20 says we should not work on the Sabbath. The Sabbath was given to man so that he would have one day out of seven to worship God and to rest and regenerate and refresh his body and spirit. The spirit of the Sabbath law was that we should not do anything for personal gain.
- The Sabbath law should be a blessing to man. Instead, all the legalistic details made it a burden on humans.

Jesus purposely opposed their Sabbath legality.
● Matt. 12:1-8 Jesus walks through the cornfields picking grain and eating it because they were hungry. When the Pharisees criticized him, he said, "The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
● Luke 6:6-11 Jesus heals a man with a withered hand in the synagogue. When they criticize him, he says, "Is it lawful to do good or evil, to save life or destroy it, on the Sabbath?"
● Luke 13:10-17 Jesus healed a deranged woman for 18 years. When they criticized Him, He shamed them, and when He did, they became angry with Him.

They didn't care that this man was healed. All they saw was the "abuse" of their legalism. Jesus would not have told him to lift his bed if it was against God's law.

(2) He declared himself God equal to his Father—John 5:18; John 10:33

Jesus did not speak blasphemy because he made himself equal to God, for he is God.

Blasphemy is when the liberal comes along and says that Jesus is not God.
- Blasphemy is for cults like Jehovah's Witnesses that come out and say that Jesus is some kind of subgod.

He is God! Have you declared Him Lord in your life?

Apparently, the healing of the cripple didn't even attract the attention of the other sick people there that day. You would have thought they were all screaming for healing. If they did, however, Scripture is silent about it. You would think if a lost world saw old sinners saved by the grace of God it would have an impact on them. However, they usually just walk past it and remain totally absorbed and go about their business as usual. A pity! Jesus walks by where they are and they don't even notice! If they do, he is only perceived as an annoyance. That's sad but true!

From my bondage, my suffering and my night, Jesus I come, Jesus I come.
Into your freedom, joy and light, Jesus, I come to you.
Out of my sickness into your health, out of my need and into your riches.
Out of my sin and into you, Jesus, I come to you.

Christ's Claims to His Deity
Johannes 5:16-30

The most hotly debated question of modern historians and theologians is: "Who is Jesus Christ?" "What is His true identity?"
- Conservative Bible believers declare that he is the divine Son of God who came in the flesh. He is God! He is the Godman! He is as much God as if he were not man, and he is as much man as if he were not god. He is the Godman!
- Liberals, cultists and unbelievers have tried to explain away His deity. They see him as a sub-god; a good man, a moral teacher, perhaps a role model to follow, but certainly not one to save.

The Jews of Jesus' day, motivated by their own bitter jealousy, accused him of being a Samaritan (John 8:48), demon-possessed (John 7:20; John 8:52), insane
(John 10:20) and of illegitimate birth (John 8:41).
-Although they could not deny Jesus' mighty power, they dismissed it as being of satanic origin (Mt 12:24).

However, according to His own testimony, Jesus always claimed and claimed to be God incarnate in human flesh.
- He often spoke of having already lived in heaven before he came into this world - John 8:23.
-Jesus took over the prerogatives of deity. He claimed control of man's eternal destiny (John 8:24), power to answer prayer (John 14:13-14), and right to attribute worship, honor, and obedience to God alone (John 5:23). He also accepted the right to forgive sins (Mark 2:5-11). He further outraged the unbelieving Jews by taking God's covenant name "I AM" for himself (John 8:24, 58).

The key phrase in this passage is John 5:18 - "make oneself equal to God."
- Jesus spends the next 15 verses claiming to be God. He is the Son of God and God the Son!

Why would Jesus spend so much time talking about his deity? For if he were not God, his death, which he would die on the cross, would have no redeeming value. This truth lays the foundation for the cross.

I want to share three things with you:

I. The courage of our Lord - John 5:16-18

John 5 is the turning point in our Lord's earthly ministry. Up to this point he had been trusted as a teacher and healer, but now he heals a man on the Sabbath and when asked why he did it he claims to be equal to God.
-Look at the courage of our Lord: Jesus never denied the charge. Instead of denying their charges, he endorsed them! He claims to be equal to God.
● Only God can sustain creation; so did Jesus—Col. 1:17
● Only God can forgive sin; so was Jesus—Luke 7:48
● Only God can raise people from the dead; so also Jesus - John 11
● Only God can send the Holy Spirit; so was Jesus—John 15:26

Jesus is God!

II. Our Lord's Requirements

During this speech Jesus spoke of "my Father and me".
-John 10:30 "I and my Father are one."

A. Jesus is equal in person to his Father - John 5:17-18

Jesus implies that the seventh day, the Sabbath, was not for the benefit of God, but for the benefit of man - (Mark 2:27). "God didn't stop working on the seventh day and neither did I because I am God."
- It is true that on the seventh day God rested from his creation - not because he was tired, but because he had finished creating. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that God rests every other seventh day.
-The only reason God rested that day was to sanctify the day, set it apart, bless it, and set a divine example for man to rest one day a week.

God's work did not stop that day. He rested from His creation, but He did not rest from His maintenance.
- Had He ceased His maintenance work, the world would have fallen apart a day after its creation. He did not rest from His love or His justice or His government work.
-grass does not stop growing; flowers never stop blooming; the sun doesn't stop shining; Animals are still fed - even on the Sabbath. He has all of that under control.
- God is above the Sabbath. He still answers prayers, lifts burdens, and controls the weather, even on the Sabbath.

Jesus says, "If it is wrong for me to heal on the Sabbath, then my Father is wrong also, for we are one and we are equal."
- This means that the heart of the father and the heart of the son are one. The will of the Father and the will of the Son are one.

B. Jesus is equal to his Father in his work—John 5:19-20

Jesus uses the words, "Verily, verily" - fearless, forceful, emphatic - "I tell you the truth."
- He says: “You cannot accuse me of breaking God's Sabbath because I do nothing independently of my father. Everything I do is what the Father told me to do.”
- When we see Jesus working, we see the Father working. When we hear Jesus speak, we hear the Father speak.

C. Jesus is equal to the Father in His intelligence and wisdom: John 5:20

The father has no secrets from his son. Jesus fully understands his Father's mind because he is God. Only God can understand God!
- The word for "love" here is not the expected word "agape" normally used to describe love in Deity. Rather, it is the term for friendship love – “phileo”. It is a personal love that takes pleasure in sharing everything. It represents camaraderie.

D. Jesus is equal in power to the Father—John 5:21

The O.T. tells of the father who raises the dead: The Shunammite's son was raised
(2 Kings 4:34-35) and the unidentified man who was made alive by contact with the bones of Elisha (2 Kings 13:20-21).
- In John 11 Jesus would bring his friend to life. In order to give life, you must be the source of life.

E. Jesus is equal to the Father in imparting eternal life—John 5:21, 24-26

The "greater works" of John 5:20 are to give spiritual life to the spiritually dead.
- The lost sinner is spiritually lifeless, helpless, dead. He cannot save himself or give himself life. Only Jesus is the source of eternal life.

F. Jesus is equal to the Father in judicial authority—John 5:22, 27-30

Jesus will judge both the saved and the lost. The father trusts that the son's judgment is exactly like his.

III. Our Lord's Challenge – John 5:24

Jesus' demands call for an answer. Our answer determines our eternal destiny.

Many years ago, a father and his daughter were walking through the grass of the Canadian prairie. In the distance they saw a prairie fire; Eventually they realized it would devour them. The father knew that there was only one way out. They would quickly start a fire right where they were and burn a large expanse of grass. Then, as the huge fire approached, they would stand on the already burned area. When the fire came, the daughter was frightened, but the father said to her calmly: "The flames can't harm us. We stand where the fire was.” Christ paid the penalty for our sins. In Him we have life and are not condemned because we are in a position where the wrath of God was already.

Evidence requiring judgment
Johannes 5:18,31-47

John 5 is a turning point in the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus. Up to this point, Jesus was trusted and respected as a teacher and healer, but now Jesus does two things that cause religious leaders to turn against him - he heals a man on the Sabbath day and he claims to be equal with God. From that point on, the religious leaders try to kill him.

Already in John 5 Jesus makes some claims to his divinity.
1. He claims to be equal in person to his father. He says that they have the same nature, qualities and will.
2. He claims to be equal to his father in his job. He only does what his father tells him to do.
3. He claims to be equal to his father in intelligence and wisdom. He understands his father's thoughts.
4. He claims to be his father's equal in power, even to the point where he brings the dead back to life.
5. He claims to be equal to his father in the bestowal of eternal life.
6. And he claims to be equal to his father in the authority of the court.

Now, in a sense, Jesus is putting Himself on trial to prove that He is equal to God and indeed is God—come in the flesh.
- He will call a number of witnesses in His defense. Then we have to deliberate as a jury, weigh the evidence and come to a verdict on Him.

Jesus is about to call four witnesses for him. The word "testimony" is a key word in the Gospel of John. It is used no fewer than 47 times in his gospel.

Notice John 5:31. The word "true" here means "valid". In other words, you need more than your testimony in court. We need other witnesses to reinforce the truth.

- According to Jewish law, the validity of any claim had to be confirmed by two or three witnesses. We need other witnesses to reinforce the truth.
-Jesus even declared this to be true - Matthew 18:15-16; German 17:6; German 19:15. Therefore, the testimony of Jesus alone was not enough.

Jesus, the main defender, brings forth four witnesses to testify about himself.

I. The Forerunner's Witness - John 5:33-35

The purpose of John the Baptist's ministry was to prepare the nation of Israel for the Messiah (John 1:23) and to identify Him when He came (John 1:31).
-John 1:15 "John testified to him, saying, 'This was he of whom I said: 'He that comes after me shall be preferred to me, for he was before me.'"
- Note John 1:29-34 John had a testimony of who Jesus was.
-John 1:19-23, 25-27 The testimony of John supported Jesus' claim to be the Messiah.

Israel had not had a prophet of God for 400 years until John the Baptist came, so his testimony carried considerable weight.
-Since John the Baptist testified of Jesus, Jesus now testifies of John the Baptist – Matthew. 11:11; John 5:35
John's burning inner zeal for Jesus made him a shining light in a dark world.
- We are to have the same burning zeal, for Jesus said to His disciples: “You are the light of the world... Do not put your light under a basket... but let it shine so that people may see your good works and glorify them your Father in heaven.”
-Someone aptly said: “The best argument for Christianity is the Christians – their joy, their certainty, their completeness. But the strongest argument against Christianity is also the Christians - when they are self-righteous and complacent in half-hearted commitment to Jesus.”

II. The Finished Works - John 5:36

The works that Jesus is referring to are the miracles he performed.
-In his defense, Jesus moves from verbal to visual evidence.
-John selected seven "signs" to include in his gospel as proof that Jesus is the Son of God.

Jesus placed great emphasis on His miracles and repeatedly referred to His wonderful works as confirmation of His claim to be the Son of God and the Messiah—John 10:25, 37-38;
John 14:11; Matt. 11:3-5

It was the miracles of our Lord that caused Nicodemus to admit that Jesus was "sent from God" (John 3:2).
-John 7:31 Many believed because of the miracles that he was the Christ.

Let me share seven things related to the miracles of our Lord:
1. Their number – Jesus performed MANY miracles. The Gospels list no fewer than 35, but the Gospel writers state that he accomplished many more. John said that there were so many things that Jesus did that if they were written one after the other, the world could not comprehend the books that were being written.
2. Their Greatness - They were no small miracles, but large and mighty.
3. They were public - They weren't made in a corner, but above all.
4. Your Character - They were acts of love, mercy and compassion.
5. They were irrefutable - They were visible and would stand up to scrutiny.
6. The miracles reveal God. God's true nature, power and character are seen in the miracles.
7. The greatest witness of Christ is the power to transform people's lives.

Some liberals try to explain away the miracles of our Lord; and in doing so they try to take away his deity. But there is one miracle that liberals have never been able to explain away - the ultimate and greatest miracle of His own resurrection from the dead. If He could perform this last great miracle, why would anyone hesitate to believe His other miracles?

III. The Word of the Father - John 5:32, 37-38

Notice how Jesus introduces his father (John 5:32) - "There is another".
-There are two Greek words that translate as "different". "Heteros," from which we derive our word "hetrosexual," means "one of the other kind."

- “Allos” means “another of the same kind”. Jesus used the same word to describe the holy
Spirit in John 14:16. It means "one like myself".
- Jesus says: “The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all equal; they are one of the same kind.”

The Gospels record two particular instances in which the father gave oral witness to his son: at his baptism and at his transfiguration, when "a voice from our heaven said, 'This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Mt. 3:17, 17:5

IV. The Faithful Scriptures - John 5:39, 45-47

The word "search" means "to examine, to examine, to pour diligence on," "for they testify of me."
-John 5:39 is probably a statement of fact, not a command, and could be rendered, "You search the Scriptures and think that by them you have eternal life."
- The Jewish scribes tried to know the Word of God, but did not know the God of the Word. They counted the letters of the text, but they missed the spiritual truths contained in the text.
- It is unfortunate when our "study" of the Bible makes us arrogant instead of humble.

The Jewish leaders thought that the scriptures and the study of the scriptures would bring them eternal life. They thought the scriptures and not God was the source of life.
- It is very possible for a person to become a Bible scholar and not be saved.
-These Jews allowed Bible study to become academic, but did not let it draw them closer to God.
- They became so occupied with the details of Scripture that they overlooked the truths contained therein.
- They enjoyed judging the Word of God, but they didn't allow the Word of God to judge them (I've had Bible teachers like that).
-Jesus bared their hearts – John 5:42. They loved their own opinions about the Word of God. Jesus summarized their problem in Matthew. 15:8-9

Notice John 5:46-47, 37a
-Jesus said, “If you want to know if I am who I say I am, just read Genesis through Malachi and see all about my birth, life, ministry, death and resurrection at. My earthly role was accurately foretold hundreds of years in advance.”
- There are over 300 specific prophecies that Jesus fulfilled at his first coming.

We are told in O.T. Prophecy of our Lord's lineage:
• In Genesis 9:26-27 we are told that of the three sons of Noah, the Messiah would come through Shem.
• We are told by the descendants of Shem that the Messiah would come through Abraham (Genesis 12:2-3; Genesis 22:18).
• Of the two sons of Abraham, the Messiah would come through Isaac—Gen. 21:12
• Of the two sons of Isaac, He would come through Jacob—Gen. 34:10-12
• Of the 12 sons of Jacob we are told that the Messiah would not come from the noble Joseph, but from the rogue Judah—Gen. 49:10
• Of the descendants of Judah all were rejected except the family of Jesse - Isa. 11:1-2

• Of the sons of Jesse all were rejected except the youngest, David—Jer. 23:5

The Lord narrowed down the Messiah's genealogical tree until he could only be a descendant of Abraham through Isaac, Jacob, Judah, Jesse and David. The first words of the N.T. are: “A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Frosted. 1:1

• Micah 5:2 - We are told that Jesus would not only be born of David's family, but also in David's city - Bethlehem.
• Is a. 7:14 We are told that he would be born of a virgin and would be called Immanuel. Just. 3:1 4:5 That an Elijah-like figure that lived in the desert and cried out a message warning the people to prepare the way of the Lord.
• Is a. 9; Isaiah 11; Is a. 52; Is a. 53 We are told of His traits; that he would be holy, righteous, good, faithful, innocent, zealous, meek, forgiving, loving, full of righteousness.
• Zech. 9:9 We are told that his ministry would begin in Galilee and culminate in Jerusalem, where the Messiah would come in humble on a young donkey.
• PS. 22 We are told that he would be put to death on the cross.

How did the Jews respond to these witnesses and to the Lord?
● John 5:40 “You will not come to me that you may have life”
● John 5:42 “You do not have the love of God in you.”
● John 5:43 “You did not accept me.”
● John 5:44 “You do not seek the glory that comes from the only God.”
● John 5:47 “You do not believe his writings.”

The Jews listened to our Lord's witnesses and rejected Him. Their decision brought them death.

You heard the same witnesses. You actually know more than they do. Your decision serves as a warning to us.

It is time to make your decision about Christ. It's about eternal life or death!

What will your decision be?

Little is much when God is in it
Johannes 6:1-15

Before we get to the section itself, let me share some interesting truths with you:

A. There is a large time gap between John 5:47 and John 6:1.

I know there's just a little blank space in your Bible, but actually there's a six-month gap in time. A lot has happened between these two chapters.
-Jesus performed many miracles and often taught people. Many were saved. If you want to see how much has happened in those six months, read on
Frosted. 4:23 to Matthew 14:12 or Mark 1 to halfway through Mark 6.
- It had been a busy time for our Lord and His disciples. The common people had received Jesus well and he was very popular with them. But the religious leaders had rejected him. Jesus had also received the news that John the Baptist had been beheaded, and both Jesus and his disciples felt much sorrow and heartache because of John's death. You will remember that several of our Lord's disciples were also disciples of John the Baptist and loved him.
-Jesus and his disciples were physically exhausted. They needed some rest and relaxation. Jesus planned for them to get away together for a while.
-Mark 6:31 Jesus said to his disciples, “Come alone to a deserted place and rest a while.
-Jesus told his disciples to get into a boat and go across the Sea of ​​Galilee. It was three miles across the sea by boat. A crowd saw which way they were going. So they started walking the shoreline around the sea. It was about ten miles to walk to the shoreline.
- When John 6:1 says, “After these things,” he is referring to what happened between John 5:47 and 6:1.

B. Where did so many people come from—more than 5,000 women and children?

Below in John 6:4 we are told that it was Passover time. Jews from the surrounding towns made their way to Jerusalem for the Passover festival.
-Jesus lifted up His eyes and saw all these people coming to Him. One author said that Jesus and his disciples were "populated to death" and needed a vacation, but it was not to be.

C. This is one of only two creative miracles of our Lord.

Now, I know that all of our Lord's miracles were creative in some sense, but there are only two of His miracles that were creative in some sense -- one was the wine and one was the bread.

Jesus turned water into wine. Jesus made wine without grapes or the fruit of the vine. The vines were not planted; no cultivation of the vines; no period of time for the grapes to ripen or need to be prepared. He just made something out of nothing.

In this miracle, the fish was secondary to the bread. When John 6:13 talks about gathering the fragments, the fish are not even mentioned. The word for fish does not refer to a catfish fillet. They refer to small, tiny sardine-like fish that swam in schools in the Sea of ​​Galilee.

They pickled the fish and made it into a relish and spread it on the bread to flavor it and give it a little moisture. It was primarily a miracle to multiply bread even though the fish were there.
- How wonderful that the two primary acts of creation of Jesus Christ speak to us symbolically of his shed blood and his body given for us. These two miracles of our Lord picture Him as our Christ crucified.
- Notice John 6:53-54

Three things I want to share with you from this passage:

I. Our Lord's Mercy

When Matthew recorded this incident, he said that when Jesus saw the crowd coming, he took pity on them and healed their sick, and Mark says that Jesus began to teach them.
-Well, it was afternoon. Night was approaching and the people would need shelter and food. Luke says the day was slowly coming to an end; literally the day was sinking.
- Most people had not eaten since early morning and were hungry. The disciples recognized that something had to be done, and so did Jesus, so Jesus asked, “How are we going to deal with this?” What was their answer?

1. "Let's get rid of the problem by getting rid of the people."

Frosted. 14:15 and Mark 6:36 says that the disciples suggested just sending the people away. Let them find their own food. It's not our problem. Let her fend for herself.
- I wonder if the church sees the crowd that way. Instead of feeling sorry for the lost around us, we just let them fend for themselves.

When you enter a church, you can read these words on the wall of the church:
You will not search; they must be sought.
They will not come; they must be brought.
You will not learn; they must be taught.
In other words, it's our job to bring them here!

2. “Let us gather more money” John 6:5-7

Phillip does not answer Jesus' question. Jesus asked WHERE they could get bread; not how much it would cost.
-Why did Jesus ask Philip? The real reason is given in John 6:6. Phillip needed a test. A test is used to prove something, and our Lord wants to prove something to Phillip.
-Jesus knew what he was going to do and he knew he wasn't going to buy bread. He said this to test Phillip. He wanted to test Phillip's faith.

Our Lord often tests in this way. I call it confidence test; and they come into everyone's life. Sometimes things happen in our lives for no other reason than to test our confidence.
● Remember in Genesis 22 when God tested Abraham's confidence by telling him to give up his son Isaac?
● Remember in German. Where God tested the faith of the children of Israel in the desert for 40 years? God tests our trust.

And God tests us just after we exceed our trust. If God would only test me as far as I already trust Him, I'd never get any further, would I?
- He never tests us to the point of knocking us out or exploding. No, but he tests us just beyond our confidence. Why? Because he wants to pull us up to a new level of trust.
-James says that the testing of our faith brings patience. It makes us grow.

Phillip reacted like most of us.
-We look at our own resources and realize that we are in an impossible situation. Then we decide that it doesn't work; Then we get angry.
-Then we get into despair and pray. Then we remember a verse: "My God will meet all your needs according to his riches in Christ Jesus."

3. Andrew says, "We don't have much and it's not the best, but we have to make do with what we have."

I think Jesus smiled and said, "Andrew, is that really all you have? And me? Don't let me out!"
- I think Andrew said to the boy, “Would you give Jesus your lunch?” The boy, facing Jesus, replies, “Oh, I would give everything I have to Jesus.” The boy stretches his little , feeble hand with his lunch in it, towards the almighty hand of Jesus that created the universe.
- What we offer Jesus may seem small and few, but little is much when God is in it. Anything you give to Jesus is a wise investment. God makes the best of our little one when our little one is the best we can give him.

Lessons from a little boy

1. He shows us that age is no obstacle to Christ. Never feel too old or too young to be used by God.

2. God delights in using small things
● A baby touched the heart of Pharaoh's daughter.
● God used a shepherd's staff in Moses' hand.
● David used a slingshot and a stone to defeat Israel's enemies.

3.The boy shows how important availability is

4. The boy shows that we never know what can happen when we bring someone to Jesus.

II. Command of our Lord - John 6:10

Phillip and Andrew both failed the test of faith, but they passed the test of obedience.
- Obedience is always the channel through which faith comes. Your faith will never grow unless you obey the Lord.
-Jesus used his disciples in the miracle.

A. He took it
● I can hear Jesus speaking to the boy: “Will you give me your lunch? All of it; no part of it?” Often we are willing to give Jesus a part but not all. Everything he had!

● This is what Jesus expects from us! He never asks us to give him anything we don't have. But he demands that we give him everything we have if we are to be a part of what he wants to make a difference in the lives of those around us.

B. He blessed it
● While the people waited and watched in silence, Jesus got up. Every eye must be on him and every ear tuned to hear his voice.
● The crowd heard him speak to his father and thank God for providing for the physical needs of the people.
● How embarrassing it would have been to thank God for the food for the multitudes if only five loaves and two fish remained.

-Why did Jesus do that? Something was put into the blessing that wasn't there before.
-When the boy committed his lunch to Jesus, it was transformed by Jesus.
-Small will stay small if we don't give it to Jesus.
- By the way, I'm glad to see that Jesus wasn't ashamed to bless the lunch in front of all these people.
- An old farmer came to town ... all things considered. He went to a restaurant to eat and when his food came he bowed his head and thanked God for the food. Young men saw it and thought they were having fun with the old farmer. One of them said, "Dude, does everyone on the farm say thank you before they eat?" He said, "Everyone except the pigs."

- When Jesus blessed the lunch, don't you think that he asked the father to bless the boy too? I believe Jesus also thanked the boy for giving him what was needed for the miracle.

C. He broke it

Like lunch, we must be broken many times before we are of use to God. Broken by our pride... our haughty spirit... our stubborn will.
-J. Sidlow Baxter, the great preacher and author, said that during the early years of his ministry he took pride in his degrees and abilities. He went through a time when God did not bless his life. He said it was like God just took his hand off his life. Broken, he came before God and asked Him, “Why?” God replied, “Sid, I use sparrows; not peacocks.

D. He used it John 6:11-12

-Jesus must have taken the first loaf and broken it in half...gave something to John, then Peter, then Philip, then Andrew...they would pass it out and come back to Jesus for more.
-Not a crumb or morsel was given to the people that was not first received by Jesus!

- Everyone was not only fed, but also fed!
- I can see Andrew holding a full basket in his hands as he offered bread and fish to someone who was already mouthing full and said, “No thanks! I couldn't eat another bite!" Someone else said, "I don't know when I ate so much."

I think the lad stood there grinning, thumbs in his suspenders and rocking
back on their heels.

-Imagine the wonderful joy and satisfaction the boy felt when he saw what Jesus did with his lunch. There was no way he could have imagined what would come of his simple gift. Likewise, you and I cannot imagine what will come of our lives when we surrender them to the will and purpose of God.
- What if the little boy hadn't given Jesus his lunch that day? He should be a blessing or a curse by what he did with everything.

-When he gave Jesus his lunch, he might have thought he wouldn't see it again. He saw it again and much more. The same applies to our life.

-When the boy came home, I wonder if he didn't say... “Mom, you should have seen it. The more I gave Him... He made more and more of it. I wonder if everything I give him would be like that?” You know the answer, right?

Do you want to see a miracle? Give him everything you are!

Johannes 6:12-13

Why collect the fragments?
-Was Jesus environmentally friendly? Was he just making sure he left the slope the way he found it?
- Or... did he teach his disciples and us one last lesson?

There's an old saying, "Don't waste, don't want."

God owns the cattle on a thousand hills; yet He said, "Gather up the fragments."
- The natural thing was to just leave the fragments lying around.
-Fragments are not the crumbs, but the original fragments that Jesus broke.

We are so wasteful and waste is sin.
- When I first walked into this church, I noticed the words on all the light switch covers, “Turn it off.” I like it. It's a management issue.

Our God provides us with all things in abundance for our enjoyment; but He's looking to see what we're going to do with a cup of cold water.
- Do not be careless with the fragments of life. As stewards of God we will face a day of accountability.

"Ships sink on small leaks!" Collect the fragments. make sure nothing is lost.

They collected the fragments in baskets. The Greek word for basket is kophinos, which is a Jewish traveling basket made of wicker, such as is carried through the desert by the Jews.

Why collect the fragments? To teach the value of God's gifts and appreciate His blessings more.
-God can even allow difficult times to come to teach us the importance of this truth.

Notice that it was Jesus who organized this cleansing crew, and the crew consisted of his twelve disciples.
- Service for Jesus is not just splendor and glory. It also involves some very humiliating duties.
- If you cannot accept the humble duties, you will not do much for Christ.
- It may have been an honor to give out the food to the people, but cleaning up afterwards is a different story.
-Proverbs 6:6-11 Do not be careless with the fragments.
- What kind of fragments should we watch out for?

I. The Time Fragment

1.Eph. 5:16 "Redeem the time, for the days are evil."
hp 90:12 "Teach us, then, to number our days, that we may devote our hearts to wisdom."
2. Benjamin Franklin once said: “Do you love life? Then don't waste your time, because that's the stuff of which life is made.”

V. The fragment of the right decisions

Just one life to live
It will be adopted soon
Only what is done for Christ will endure.

Collect the fragments... so nothing gets lost!!

When the storms of life come
Johannes 6:15-21

Our Lord had just performed the greatest miracle He had ever performed: feeding the 5,000 with the loaves and fishes.
-The Gospel of Matthew tells us that after Jesus performed the miracle, the crowd wanted to make him king. People thought that if He were their King they would NOT have to bake bread or catch fish. But Jesus would not be their King for these reasons, so Jesus instructs His disciples to get on a boat and go to the other side and He would meet them there.

The disciples were not ready for what happened next: The disciples set out across the sea at sunset. It was only about eight miles across the sea. Normally it would have taken about two hours to cross the sea, but a storm was coming!
- They had been rowing for 7-8 hours and were only about half way (about 3 or 4 miles away) fighting for their lives. They are afraid that if Jesus comes to them on the way, they will be lost in the storm water.

What do you do when the storms of life come? And the storms come in life!
-Someone said that we are all either IN a storm, just emerging from a storm, or heading into a storm. Not a storm at sea, but other types of storms: disease storms or debt storms or domestic troubles or deaths.

Storms trouble us much more than the Lord. In Mark 4 there was another storm at sea and the disciples were in that storm too. Jesus was in the boat with them, but he was in the stern of the boat sleeping on a pillow! It was only when the disciples woke him up and asked for help that the Lord got up and calmed the sea.

Storms come in life, and our relationship and fellowship with the Lord determine our response to the storm and to the Lord.

A little girl walked to and from school every day. Although the weather that morning was questionable and clouds were forming, she made her way to elementary school every day. Winds whipped up throughout the afternoon, along with thunder and lightning. The little girl's mother was worried that her daughter would be scared when she went home from school, and she herself feared that the thunderstorm would harm her child. After the rumble of thunder, lightning would slice through the sky like a flaming sword. Concerned, the mother quickly got into her car and drove down the path to her child's school. As she did so, she saw her little girl walking along, but with each flash, the girl looked at the streak of light and smiled. When the mother's car pulled up next to the child, she rolled down the window and called out, "What are you doing? Why do you keep stopping?” The child replied, “I'm trying to look pretty. God is always taking a picture of me.”

I want you to see three things about life's storms:

I. The meaning of storms

Why do storms come into our lives? Let me give you three possible reasons:

A. Storms in your life can mean that you are outside of God's will

It was true in Jonah's life. God said to him, "Get up, go to Nineveh...but Jonah got up to flee from the presence of the Lord to Tarshish...but the Lord sent out a great wind." Jonah 1:2-4
Understand that God sent the storm not to harm Jonah, but to turn it back. The storm was an act of grace and mercy. When we come out of God's will, He often sends storms into our lives, not to harm us but to turn us back.

B. Storms in your life can mean that you are in the will of God

That may sound like a contradiction, but it's not.
- When Paul was beaten and put in prison in Philippi, he was in the will of God.
- We must be careful when trying to interpret why people go through storms and struggles.
-Let me take you to a hill called Mt. Calvary. Jesus is there with nails in His hands and feet, a
crown of thorns on his head, and his body lies limply on a cross. Why? Because he was
do his father's will.
- Remember, these men were in the storm because Jesus "forced" them into a boat
and cross the sea. The journey was our Lord's idea!

C. Storms in your life can mean that you are God's chosen person to be an example of faithfulness to God!

That was so in Job's life. Satan told God that Job would curse God and die if He allowed him to send storms into Job's life and tear down the hedge around him and let Satan get to him. Job proved Satan wrong when the storms came.

Is it possible to have growing faith without that faith being tested? I don't believe! There are some lessons we cannot learn about ourselves and our Lord without storms in our lives.

I walked a mile with pleasure
She chatted all the way
But didn't let me get any wiser
For everything she had to say.

I've walked a mile with sorrow
And she didn't say a word.
But oh, the things I've learned from grief
When grief went with me.

Isn't that true? We are expanded when we are in need. Faith, like the film, develops best in the dark. I don't know why that is, but it's true. God's plan for your and my spiritual growth includes storms and trials.

God never makes a mistake in allowing storms to come into our lives.

He makes no mistake
My father's path can twist and turn
My heart may pound and ache
But in my soul I'm glad I know
He makes no mistake.

My cherished plans may fail
My hopes may fade
But I still trust the Lord to lead
Because He knows the way.

Even though the night may be dark and it's shining
This day will never break;
I'll nail my faith, my all in him
He makes no mistake.

There's so much I can't see
My eyesight is far too weak;
But come what may, I just trust
and leave everything to Him.

Because little by little the fog will lift
And everything that He will do becomes clear.
Though all the way is dark for me
He didn't make a single mistake.

WAS. Oberton

Often times, God throws us into the storm to discover our point of "giving up."
- They rowed for nine hours. They were still about four miles away, which means they'd rowed about six hours and gotten almost nowhere.
-It's a fact of life that sooner or later we all want to quit. There is not one of us who has never felt the desire to quit an endeavor or activity.
- You know the old cliché: "When push comes to shove, some of us want to find the nearest exit." We want to quit. And yet, when we're doing what we're supposed to be doing amid life's struggles and frustrations, we refuse to stop.

II. The Ministry in the Storm

What does Jesus do when we are in a storm? We must go back to Mark 6:45-52 to see what Jesus did while His disciples were in the storm.

A. He prays for her

Both Matt. 14:23 and Mark 6:46 tell us that Jesus went up a mountain alone to pray. From that mountaintop, Jesus had a perfect vantage point. He saw the dark clouds as they began to roll and boil. He saw the sea as the waves began to rise. He saw the disciples rowing in despair. He saw it all (Mark 6:48). Jesus saw everything and he prayed. The disciples may not have known that Jesus had his eyes on them, but he did. They couldn't see him, but he saw them. He never took his eyes off her. And there on that mountain Jesus interceded for them.
-Are you in the middle of a storm? If so, you can say, “His eyes are on the sparrow, and I know he is watching me.” Jesus is watching over you and praying for you.

B. He sees them—Mark 6:48

He knew where they were and he knows where we are.

C. He came to them - Mark 6:48

Did you notice: He comes running on the water, that was her problem.
-Why did he walk on water? It wasn't just theatre; I can ensure you. He wanted to teach them and us that whatever is over our heads is already under his feet.

Hint: He didn't come to them until the "fourth watch". That's sometime before 4:00 p.m. And
6:00 am. Why?
- Have you ever noticed how often God pushes us to the edge but doesn't let us down?
- He did not show Abraham the ram when he left home to begin his three-day journey; Nor did he show him the ram after he had built the altar and bound his son Isaac to it. The ram was only seen after Abraham raised his knife to kill his beloved son!

Why didn't Jesus come sooner? He wanted to get the most out of the lesson he was trying to teach them. He treats us the same way.

D. He spoke to them - Mark 6:50

He spoke words of assurance and encouragement. "It is I; Fear not." Literally: "Fear not, I AM."
If Jesus doesn't deliver you from the storm, He will deliver you BY the storm.

Until the storm passes

I often hid my face in the dark of midnight
while the storm howls above me and there's nowhere to hide.
"Amid the crack of thunder, precious lord, hear my cry.
Protect me until the storm is over.
Until the storm is over, until the thunder is no more,
Until the clouds roll down from the sky forever
Hold me tight, let me stand in the hollow of your hand.
Protect me until the storm is over.

Satan often whispered, "There is no need to try
For there is no end to sorrow, there is no hope little by little.
But I know that you are with me and tomorrow I will get up
Where the storms never darken the sky.
When the long night ends and the storms come no more,
Let me stand in your presence on this bright peaceful shore.
In the land where the storm never comes
Lord, may I dwell with you when the storm passes.

Until the storm is over, until the thunder is no more.
Until the clouds roll down from the sky forever
Hold my hand, let me stand, in your cupped hand
Protect me until the storm passes.

III. The message of the storm

1. There will never be a time or place when Jesus doesn't come to the good times, yes...but also in the storms.
2. You cannot learn His ability without adversity.
3. You are made a better person by the storm.

If He doesn't calm it down around you, He will calm it down within you.

"I sank deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore,
Stained very deeply within, sinking not to rise any more;
But the master of the sea heard my desperate cry
Raised me from the waters, now I'm safe.
Love lifted me up! Love lifted me up! When nothing else could help
love lifted me up!”

Reasons for following Jesus
Johannes 6:22-36

These verses take place the day after Jesus fed the 5,000+ with the boy's luncheon.
- It had been a busy day and night for Jesus and His disciples. You will remember wanting to get away from the crowds and rest for a while...but instead Jesus taught and healed all day and fed the crowds at night. Then, when it got dark, Jesus sent his disciples into the sea to meet them on the other side. But a storm came and Jesus had to rescue them from the storm.
-Now Jesus and the disciples were on the other side of the sea. The crowd didn't let up. They also went back across the sea. They knew that the disciples had gotten into a boat to cross the river and that Jesus had gone alone to be alone, but when they saw the disciples, to their surprise, Jesus was there too.
-John 6:25 "How did you get here?" Notice that Jesus did not answer their question. If he did, they wouldn't have believed him! (Well, I sent my disciples ahead, but a storm was coming up and they were afraid, so I was walking on the water to where they were, and Peter saw me and wanted to walk to me on the water... I told him, he was to come and when we got to the boat together we got on the boat and like another miracle as soon as we got on the boat the boat was immediately 3 miles from the shore and we got here in no time.) Do you think, would you have believed that?

Instead of answering their question, Jesus confronts them with their false motives for following him.
-By the way, Jesus knows everything about us. He knows our motives:
● Why are you in this ministry? Habit? Duty? Is it expected of you? Because you love the Lord Jesus and want to be in His presence and learn more about Him?
● Jesus could look into their hearts and see their motives. They couldn't fool him, and neither could we.

Why did you follow Jesus? Why are we following him?

A. Some followed for entertainment
-Jesus put on a pretty good show. They liked it when Jesus blinded them... He was the best there was.
● Watch as he takes five loaves and two fish and feeds 5,000
● Watch as he touches a leper that everyone else feared, making his skin as soft as a baby's.
● Watch him spit on the ground, make mud, smear it on a blind man's eyes and make him see.
-He did things that have never been seen before. They wanted to be entertained but not involved.
- I've seen that in churches. Bring on the food and the singing; Bring forth the good sermon; Bring on the good times, but don't ask me to be a part of it.
-If we're not careful, we'll end up like so many who want to be entertained rather than involved. We will sit in our pews and evaluate the singing and preaching to see what it does for us, but we are not ready to commit to our lives.

B. Some followed John 6:26-27 for amusement

- They just wanted one more meal. They saw Jesus only as the "breadman"; not for her soul, but for her body.
- They replaced the physical with the spiritual.
-Phil. 3:18-19 "Their belly is their god." Their true appetites were carnal and they hungered for temper rather than for eternity.
- They missed the true worth of Jesus --- Bread for their souls; not their bodies.
● I heard about two boys who broke into a hardware store; Not to steal anything, but here's what they did: They changed the prices of everything. They had nails that sold for $200.00 a piece...hammers were $0.50 a dozen...lawn mowers were $0.06 a pound.
● That's what the world did. Our souls are of eternal value. A good name and good character cannot be bought; But the world would belittle a man's reputation... his name, his character, his values.
- Notice John 6:27

C. Some followed John 6:28-36 as evidence
- Jesus just claimed to be greater than Moses...and even more so, to be God's Son, the True Bread that came down from Heaven. So they must trust him for eternal life.
-Your Answer - John 6:30-31 - Prove It...Top That!
- They said: “We don't need you, Jesus. Our moral life will take us to heaven.”
-Here is a group of swimmers swimming to Hawaii:
● A swimming instructor swims 25 miles
● A CEO swims 10 miles
● Citizen of the Year swims a mile
● A butt swims 15 meters
None made it to Hawaii. Some came closer than others, all drowned.
- No one is morally good enough to make it to heaven. You have to be perfect to go to heaven. ONLY JESUS ​​can credit us with his righteousness.

D. Some followed for enrichment
They just want to be with Jesus and let Him do for them what only He could do.

There were three reactions:

(1) Open Apostasy John 6:60-66
"That's a tough saying"... hard to accept

(2) Firm Resolve John 6:67-69
If everyone stayed, Peter wouldn't do it

(3) Subtle Deception John 6:70-71
Why did Jesus choose Judas?

(a) To demonstrate His sovereignty, Jesus knew what He would do from the moment He chose Judas.

(b) Judas gave impartial testimony to the moral excellence of Christ. He was as close to Jesus as any other human being in public and private. If there had been a mistake, he would have spotted it. Yet he said, "I have betrayed innocent blood." (Matthew 27:4)

(c) Judas shows us that we can expect to find hypocrites among Jesus' followers. Judas did many things that the other disciples did. He left home and family, listened to Jesus teach and preach, went on missionary trips with the other disciples, and no one suspected him of betraying Jesus. They trusted him so much that they even made him treasurer.

(d) In Judas the awesome power of sin is seen. Imagine spending three years with Jesus; in his presence. Judas saw our Lord's love for sick and sinful mankind, heard his wisdom
His teachings, observing his fellowship with his father, saw divine love in action. Now imagine you would betray one of them. What a powerful grip sin can have on a man!

(e) Judas gives the sinner a solemn warning: A person may be near salvation and not be saved.
● He kissed the door to heaven and went to hell!
● Examine yourself to see if you are in the faith.
● Matt. 7:21-23

Jesus: The Bread of Life
Johannes 6:35-52

John records only seven of our Lord's miracles, and he uses these miracles to record a discourse from our Lord.
● Jesus feeds 5,000 with bread and fish and then gives his talk claiming to be the bread of life.
● Jesus heals a blind man and then claims to be the light of the world.
● Jesus claims to be the resurrection and the life and then raises Lazarus from the dead.
This is the first of seven "I am" statements in the Gospel of John. Jesus explains:
~I am the bread of life - John 6:35 ~I am the resurrection and the life - John 11:25
~I am the light of the world - John 8:12; John 9:5 ~ I am the way, the truth, the life - John 14:6
~I am the door - John 10:7,9 ~I am the vine - John 15:1,5
~I am the Good Shepherd - John 10:11,14

These discourses, more than anything else, present the deity of our Lord.
- These “I am” statements are set against the backdrop of the burning bush in Exodus 3. Moses asked the god of the burning bush who sent him to rescue God's people from Egyptian bondage, “What is your name?” God said : “My name is I Am” – “I have always been; I am now; and I always will be."
-There is no absolute definition of God! Any attempt to define God is to limit Him! It is not possible to describe or even explain His entire majesty, glory, might, power, knowledge or person!
-He declares that He is the covenant - that God keeps - The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

In this first "I am" statement, Jesus takes on the name and identity of God and connects with God the Father. He declares to be of divine origin in His incarnation because He declares seven times in John 6 that He came down from heaven—
Johannes 6:33,38,41,42,50,51,58
- In other words, Jesus claimed to be God!

This is a harsh speech Jesus gave about the bread of life. It was difficult for people to understand and accept then, and it is difficult for us to accept today.
● John 6:41 – They murmured (murmured, complained) about him
● John 6:52 – They quarreled (quarreled, quarreled) among themselves
● John 6:60 – “This is harsh speech; who can understand (accept) it?”
● John 6:66 - Many went away or forsaken him
● John 6:67 - He even asked His 12 men, "Are you going too?"
Some church denominations have made these verses even more confusing by misapplying these verses to the Lord's Supper.
- Some take John 6:52-58 literally and say that Jesus teaches cannibalism.
-The Roman Catholic Church uses these verses to teach transubstantiation: "Trans" means across; and "substance," referring to the body and blood of the Lord Jesus. They teach that miracles happen when you partake of the sacrament. They teach that when you put the wafer in your mouth it actually becomes the body of Christ, and when you drink the wine it actually becomes the blood of Christ. So you have His power spiritually and His life forever; so you have the life of Christ within you, which is eternal life.
There are several problems with this:
1. This could not refer to the Lord's Supper because our Lord instituted the Lord's Supper almost a year after this discourse.
2. These verses were spoken to unbelievers and the Lord's Supper is for believers only.
3. The Lord's Supper is taken as a visible reminder of our Lord's sacrifice for us.
I want to share three things with you:

I. Our Lord's claim - John 6:35, 48, 51

It is interesting that Jesus was born in Bethlehem - the house of bread

The question is, "Where did Jesus come from? Seven times in John 6 Jesus declares that he came down from heaven.
-This means that Jesus existed and existed as God before he was born on this earth.
- He not only claimed that he would go to heaven, but that he had already been to heaven. No wonder people said, "That's a tough speech." If we had been there that day, it would have been a tough decision for us too.

Jesus then makes a strange suggestion. He said: "A lot of you don't believe me, do you? What does it take for you to believe?”
- Then he makes the strange suggestion – John 6:62 “What if I reversed everything so that you could see with your own eyes: me as I am now; then at the age of 12; then as a baby; then ascend again to heaven whence I came.”
-It's like watching a movie backwards. Have you ever watched America's funniest home videos and seen them do it the other way around?
-The main question here is: "Where did Jesus come from?"

II. Our Lord's Comparison – John 6:49-51

When Jesus called himself "the living bread," he was not claiming to be exactly like the manna of Moses' day. He claimed to be even bigger!

● Manna was only for Israel; Jesus was for the whole world.
● Manna only sustained life; Jesus gives life.
● The Jews ate the manna every day for 40 years and finally died; Once you receive Jesus as the bread of life, you will live forever and never die.
● It cost God nothing to send the manna each day, but it cost the father his son's life to send the living bread.
● The manna was temporary and physical; Jesus the living bread is eternal and spiritual.
● Jesus not only gives bread; He IS bread.
● That was a piece of bread that was hard for the crowd to swallow!

III. Our Lord's Challenge – John 6:58

The heart of these verses is twofold:
Jesus wants us to know who he is and where he came from. He is God and He came down from heaven to offer a sacrifice to sinful man.

Jesus wants us to know how a person is saved.

A. Salvation is God's work on man's behalf—John 6:35–37–44

These are very important verses. There is a theological argument raging today about election or free will.
- There are some who put all their eggs in the basket of choice; that's called Calvinism.
- There are others who put all their eggs in the basket of free will.
- You say, "Preacher, can you reconcile these two?" No sir. And neither can you. Any man who says he can is a liar or a cheater or both.
- Someone asked Charles Spurgeon to reconcile the two and he said: "I don't need to reconcile old friends."

Look at John 6:37 Election and free will are both in this verse.
- “All that the Father gives me shall come to me” says one truth, and that is election.
-But wait a minute! "Whoever comes to me I will not cast out" is also true, and "whoever comes to me" is free will. I don't know how to reconcile them, but they are both true. The Father gives Christ men, but men must come. And those that come are apparently the ones the Father gives Him.
- You say, “Well, what if I'm not of God's elect and I come to Christ?” Well, God will make an exception in your case because you've come to Him.” Friend, if you come to Christ , you will be the chosen ones!
- The wonderful thing is that it is God's will that everyone come and no one perishes. "Whoever wants, let him come!"
-How can you know if you are one of the chosen ones? Come to Jesus in faith!

Note John 6:4 Without God's drawing, no one would ever come unto Christ.
- The word “draw” speaks of a divine activity sometimes called conviction as He draws us out of the darkness of sin by the power of God's grace and draws our hearts to His glorious Son. With his loving kindness he tenderly but powerfully wins our hearts.
-Drawing implies resistance. Christ attracts all people, but not all respond to him. The offer of salvation is for all to be saved, but we all must make choices, and we are all responsible for our choices.

B. What does God “draw” us to?

Johannes uses several terms when we react to his drawing:
● John 6:35 – come unto Jesus and believe in Jesus
Joh 6:35
(35) And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never go hungry again; and whoever believes in me will never thirst.

● John 6:40 – see or see with the eyes of faith
Joh 6:40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him should have eternal life; and I will raise him up on the last day

● John 6:45 – listen to Jesus
Joh 6:45 It is written by the prophets: And they will all be taught of God.

Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me.

Now Jesus introduces a new metaphor: eating his flesh - John 6:52-58
Jesus speaks figuratively and refers to his whole person. This is an idiom that means to receive and integrate Christ into our own lives by faith until we are one.

Notice John 6:56 The analogy of eating points to several things:

1. Bread must be internalized, otherwise it is useless
You can examine or study bread, smell it, read about it, but it will be useless until you eat it; absorb it.

2. The Holy Spirit must create a hunger and awaken our spiritual need for Christ.
God must give lost man a hunger for forgiveness, deliverance, peace, hope and cleansing.

3.Food is personal
Watching other people eat will not do me any good. Nobody else can eat for me.

4. What I eat becomes a part of me.

C. What does God promise to those who receive the bread of life?

1. Life – John 6:57
2.Eternal life - John 6:47,51,58
3. He will be secure in Christ—John 6:37, 39
4. God will physically resurrect him at the last day—John 6:39, 40, 44, 54
5. We will abide in (connect with) Christ both here on earth and in heaven—John 6:56

Jesus offers a beautiful invitation in John 6:35.

Joh 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never go hungry again; and whoever believes in me will never thirst.

spiritual defects
Johannes 6:60-71

John 6 begins with thousands of people following Jesus and ends with all forsaking him except his twelve, and one of them will betray him.

Some of the saddest experiences of my life have been the times I've seen people I thought were truly dedicated to Christ, but then watched them walk away from Christ.
- How many times have I heard something like this: "I don't know what happened to them, but they no longer walk with the Lord."

Spiritual trash!
-You disappoint your pastor; her church; your family!
-Jude 12 says they are like "clouds without water, carried about by the winds". The picture is like this: it is dry and it has been dry for a long time. The grass in the yard turns brown and dies. The garden is as good as dried up and if it doesn't rain soon everything you planted and worked so hard will die. Then you see a big dark cloud in the sky. The cloud shows so much promise that rain is on the way. It even smells like rain! Then the wind starts to blow and the cloud breaks up and it doesn't rain. You are dissapointed!

Pastors and leaders in the church are doing all they can to continue the success and growth in ministry.
-But in John 6, Jesus seems to do everything possible to drive as many people as possible away from his ministry. I mean, we're always trying to find a successful EXPANSION campaign; Jesus seems to be running a successful ENSMALLMENT campaign here!

When Jesus does anything in these verses, He is issuing a call to devotion.
-Jesus knows that many of these followers are only there for what they can get for their flesh. Jesus puts down the gauntlet and calls on each of these followers to commit themselves to Him and Him alone.
-He cleanses the ranks of His disciples, effectively weeding out most who are not sincere in their faith or devotion.

We live in a time when many are turning away from the things of the Lord. It shouldn't
surprises us because exactly what the Bible said would happen in the last days.
-Thess. 2:3; 2 Tim. 3:5; 1. Johannes 2:19
Why do some forsake the things of the Lord?

I. Not everyone can handle the truth - John 6:60-66

Jesus just fed 5,000 with the boy's luncheon. The motto of the crowd is: “Miracle – yes! Teach-no!"
- They say: “Who wants to hear that? I don't want to hear that I'm a sinner or that judgment is coming,” and the sad thing is that many pastors are accommodating.

After Jesus fed them, they wanted to make Him king (John 6:15), but after hearing His message (John 6:26-65), they wanted nothing more to do with Him.

What were the harsh sayings?
1. The Doctrine of Sonship - He came down from heaven
2. The Sacrifice Doctrine - Eating His Flesh and Drinking His Blood
3. The doctrine of sovereignty - God's sovereignty and human free will.

When the truth is revealed to us, there are only two possible responses: it can be accepted or it can be rejected.

People reject the truth for male reasons:

A. Some people misunderstood it

Nicodemus thought Jesus was talking about gynecology when he was actually talking about being born again.
-The woman at the well thought Jesus was talking about water pipes, when in fact he was talking about himself being the water of life.
- The man at the pool of Bethesda thought Jesus was talking about a rescue mission when he was actually talking about believing in Jesus.
-That's why people join the Church and get baptized without ever being saved.

B. Some people are against it

Jesus spoke about His divinity, His death and His rule and they opposed Him at every turn. The cross and the blood and the fact that Jesus is the only way to salvation is offensive to people today.

C. Some people are blind to it.

They kept saying to Jesus, "Show us and we will believe." They had already seen Jesus feed 5,000 with a boy's lunch. They knew that Jesus had somehow miraculously crossed the sea; yet they were blind to who He was and what He was doing.
- The sad truth is that all people are spiritually blind to the truth until their eyes are supernaturally opened by the Spirit of God.

D. Some people want the experience but not the expectation

They wanted the miracle and sensation of the loaves, but not the devotion to Jesus.
- Today's people want entertainment and excitement without any attachment to Jesus.
- The churches that are growing fastest today are those that downplay biblical teaching and never mention faith and repentance, or the ugliness and destructive power of sin, or preach holiness and devotion to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
-All you need to be successful as a church today is a contemporary band, a message that doesn't challenge anyone's life, a youth program that's all fun and games but no Bible study, and messages you want from a sensitive religion that is devoid of truth and demands no change in your life.

II. Not everyone can handle the exams

Paul speaks of a man named Demas who appeared to be a disciple of Christ. In Col. 4:14 Paul praises Demas; in Philemon 24 he calls Demas his associate; but in 2 Tim. 4:10, when Paul was in prison and about to die for his faith, Paul says, "Demas left me because he loved this present world."

Jesus gives us two parables that speak to those who are leaving.

A. The parable of the wheat and tares

The Lord sows good seed, but Satan comes at night and litters the same field with weeds that look like wheat when they begin to grow, but are a poisonous double. Jesus says that the two should grow together until harvest time, then there will come a time of separation when the weeds will be gathered up and burned. In the church there are true and false disciples of Christ.

B. The parable of the soils

Jesus said that good seeds are sown, but some fall on stony ground with shallow soil. The seed sprout, but because there is no depth of soil, it quickly dies when the hot sun rises.
-Other seeds fall among thorns. They also sprout quickly, but soon get caught in the thorns and die.
-1. Johannes 2:19

III. Everyone is tested by the Lord - John 6:67-69

When Jesus asked the disciples if they too would leave him, Peter answered for the group. He expresses their total commitment and declares that they know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and the only way to eternal life.
- Peter had made the necessary connection between the words of Jesus and Jesus himself. Receiving Christ means receiving his word. To receive His Word is to receive Him! They are always taken together.
-Because Peter put his faith in Jesus and His Word, he became a partaker of two great possessions—John 6:69

A. Belief – (“we believe”) An inner belief that Jesus is who He says He is.

B. Experience – (“and be safe”) A changed life, a full heart and a new zest and direction in life.

Peter knew how his life had changed, and that was enough to make him say with confidence that he wasn't going to walk away.
-Oh, there came a time of weakness in Peter's life when he failed the Lord. He turned his back on the Lord for a while, but he hasn't gone away forever.
-Once you have felt the mighty touch of Almighty God; Once you have walked in the light of His glory; Once you have tasted His goodness and experienced His best, you will never be satisfied with substitutes and imitations. You may wander for a while, but like the prodigal son, you will "come to yourself" and come home, and He will receive you with open arms and complete restoration.

I can't see into your heart and you can't see into mine, but God sees us as we are.
-What does God see when he looks at you? We may deceive one another, but we will never deceive God. He knows where you are spiritually.

Hebrews 4:13 What does the Lord see when he looks at your life? Does he see absolute devotion and faith? He sees you and me as we are! He sees us in a way we can't even see ourselves! Nothing is hidden from His all-seeing gaze!

We come back to the question: "Are you going away too?"

Would you give your whole life to the Lord and His will?

Jesus: The Talk of the Town
Johannes 7:1-15, 40-44

When we come to John 7, Jesus is only six months away from being hung on the cross.
-In John 7:1 we read, “After these things.” After what things? After the events of John 6. After feeding the 5,000, Jesus declared that he was the bread that came down from heaven. When he said, "I AM the bread of life," people knew he was claiming to be God, and they were all the more determined to kill him.
- So much so that he had to leave Judea for a time. John 7:1 says, “He would not walk in Judaism (or Judea) because the Jews were trying to kill him.”

Our Lord lived on a divine schedule. He was on the plan of God the Father.
-He was born on the Father's timetable to the hour (Gal. 4:4) and died on the Father's timetable.
-John 2:4 Jesus said that his hour was not yet come; that is, it was not time for him to submit to the will of men. Four more times in the gospel of John, Jesus declares that his time has not yet come—John 7:6,8,30, John 8:20
- As Jesus approached the Cross, He proclaimed that HIS HOUR IS COMING -
Johannes 12:23; Johannes 13:1; Johannes 16:32; Johannes 17:1

Hatred of the Lord grows in John 7. Threats to his life dominate this chapter. See John 7:1, 12-13, 19, 25, 30, 32, 44
- Note John 7:43. Jesus continues to divide people. We've all seen it. Maybe we're in a store, at school, at work and we're talking about a bunch of things; maybe politics or education or sports or weather; Then someone says something like, “My life's been really different lately because of Christ.” Suddenly there's silence and a shuffling of feet. someone is coughing Another looks at his watch and says, "I have to go or I'll be late." Another says, "I have to feed my dog" and he doesn't even have a dog!
-Jesus is controversial and divisive!

There is a gap of six months between the end of John 6 and the beginning of John 7. During those six months Jesus was in Galilee. We know this because Jesus was in Jerusalem for the Passover in John 6. He's going to Galilee and now, six months later, he's going back to Jerusalem, and John 7:10 says he's going back to Jerusalem "in secret" (John 7:10) to attend the Feast of Tabernacles.

Let me give you some insights into the Feast of Tabernacles:
-The festival took place in October when the harvest was in. It was a merry feast; a time of celebration, much like our Thanksgiving Day. It was one of three festivals that every Jewish man living within 20 miles of Jerusalem was required to attend.
-The festival lasted eight days. The first and last days of the feast were treated as Sabbath days, no matter what day of the week it was. Shelters or huts sprang up everywhere - on flat roofs, in dark alleys, even in the courtyards of the temple.
- They built their huts out of palm, willow or myrtle branches and made the walls extra thin to let the light through and the roof had to show enough sky for the stars to be seen, reminding them of how their ancestors had migrated in the wilderness and how God had provided for them.

- The festival was known for two things: drawing water and lighting lamps.

The drawing of water reminded them of how God gave them water out of the rock. At first
On the day of the feast, the people gathered and followed the priest to the pool of Siloam and sang Psalms 113-118. The priest carried a golden pitcher, dipped it in the pool and carried it back to the temple. When the priest sounded the trumpet, they poured the water on the altar after marching around the altar. On the seventh day, the priest marched around the altar seven times as they did around the walls of Jericho, and then poured the water on the altar.
- At night they lit the lamps, reminding them of the fire pillow that guided them through the night.
- In John 7, Jesus used the water experience to explain that He was the living water.
In John 8:12 He will declare that He is the light of the world.

Jesus declared himself to be the bread of life and the living water. Jesus becomes the talk of the town!
- Not all conversations were free, but he caught their attention!
-Men today think they're just ignoring Jesus, but that's impossible. He is to be reckoned with in this world and in the world to come. You cannot push Jesus aside because every man will find that Jesus will be waiting for him at the judgment seat.

There are at least six different opinions about Jesus in John 7:

I. Some Unbelievers John 7:3-5

Did you get that? These are the half brothers and sisters of Jesus. According to Matt. 13:55-56, Jesus had at least four brothers and at least two sisters; and they did not believe in Him until AFTER His resurrection.
-I wonder how Jesus must have felt about it! How his heart must have ache for her!

Think of the spiritual privileges they had! They had grown up around Jesus. They had spent more time with him than anyone else. You knew him better than anyone else. No doubt Mary had told them the things about His birth. They knew a lot about Him, but they didn't believe in Him.
- How sad that many people who grow up in a Christian home spend their whole lives going to a Bible-believing church and do not believe in Jesus. They would think they would be the first to trust and commit themselves to Jesus.
-Unfortunately, many who grew up in the church have religion but no relationship with Jesus. They know about him, but they don't know him.

Sometimes, when a child or two are wrong and don't accept Jesus as their Savior, the parents blame themselves. You feel like you've failed somehow. But not like this, for like the family members of our Lord, each person has free will to accept or reject Christ no matter what we do.

Incidentally, Jesus was not surprised at their unbelief, for Ps. 69:8 prophesied that they would not believe in him.
-Listen to their sarcasm - John 7:3-4. They knew that many of his disciples had gone away from him. They said: "Leave this red-necked place in Galilee and go to the great city. It's the feast day.

There will be a lot of people. Do your tricks there. I bet you can get a big following up there! Make a big show of yourself.” But Jesus did the opposite and went secretly—
Johannes 7:6-10.

II. Some despised John 7:7

- Seven times in this one chapter we are told that the religious leaders wanted to kill Jesus.
-Jesus was aware of what was in the hearts of some people. He knew how some felt about him. He knew what some wanted to do to him. John 7:7
-Why did so many people hate Jesus so much? What had he done to evoke that kind of reaction?
-What was the basis of this hatred? John 7:7
-Jesus had exposed the world for what it was, evil. He was a light that shone in the darkness and revealed the truth.
-John 3:19-20 People hated Jesus because He exposed their sin. They still do. When Jesus shines his light on a heart and reveals sin, there will always be a reaction. One can regret this sin or one will resent and resist the light. You will either be right or get angry.
-Men hate Jesus because Jesus reveals the truth about sin in life. Sin is still sin and people don't want their sins exposed for what they are, evil.
- If you understand that, you cannot love Jesus and live like the world. It is not possible. He will bring the truth to light. He will let his light shine. He will call evil what it is, evil. And when he does, they will hate him. There were people who despised Jesus.

- A man once said to a preacher, “I would like to be a Christian, but I walk around with a worldly crowd. If I became a Christian, what would I do with them?” The preacher replied, “You don't have to do anything about it. Either they'll be saved too, or they'll leave you soon if you become a Christian.” That's right.

III. Some spoke about John 7:12

-Jesus made some powerful claims about himself
• John 5:46 ... Moses wrote about me
• John 8:58 ... Before Abraham was, I AM
• He claimed to have come down from heaven... He was the Son of God.

- There was an element of people getting into big discussions about Jesus. They wanted to talk about him. They wanted to express different opinions about him.

-One group felt that "He is a good man". There was another group that said:
"He misleads the crowd." Some were for him and some were against him.
- The fact was that he was not entrusted with either. They studied him. They discussed him. They exchanged ideas about him. They debated Him. They never got beyond talking. In fact, they only talked about Him and never walked with Him.
- More people talk about Jesus than walk with Jesus. Some just discuss it.

IV. Some denounced John 7:19-24

- I told you when we were in John 5 and Jesus healed the cripple on the Sabbath, Jesus was going downhill.
They couldn't help it.
-Jesus said, “A child is born on the Sabbath… 8 days later the law says it should be circumcised… you do it. You serve him in one realm; yet I have completely healed a man and you think I have a devil.”

V. Some rejected John 7:40-52

- This betrays the great ignorance of the people, because Jesus was born in Bethlehem; not Galilee. They didn't even bother to investigate his true place of birth.
- Their ignorance is shown again when they said that no prophet ever came from Galilee - Both Jonah and Nahum were from Galilee.
-Some people talked about a preacher/professor. Das said, "Oh, he's so smart. He takes things from the Bible that aren't there.”
-Look at John 7:47-48: “The really intelligent people don't believe in Jesus. He only attracts rednecks and dummies.”
- The common people liked to hear him, but even when he was 12 years old. old in the temple, he confused the teachers of the law.
-Look at another testimony at John 7:45-46
- Notice John 7:14-18 “The Jews” were the master teachers.

VI. Some were dedicated to John 7:31, 40-41a

Thank God many have dedicated their lives to him.

A group of missionaries went down into deepest Africa. They came to a high hill and looked down on a village where no white man had ever been. They prayed for God's guidance and help and then went down to the village. The crowd began to gather around them so they could see these white strangers. One of the missionaries began speaking to them in their native language. A young boy emerged from the group and approached one of the missionaries.
He took the missionary's hand and looked at it for a long time. Then he said, "Master, can you tell me the name of the river where you washed your hands so clean?" Friends, I can tell you where your sins can be washed away.

There's a fountain full of blood
Drawn from Immanuel's veins
And sinners fell under that flood
Lose all their guilt stains.

Come to this fountain. Not only will you be washed white as snow, but all your needs will be met and blessings will flow from you to others.

The joy of a flooded heart
Johannes 7:37-39

Before reading the passage:

John 7 is about the Feast of Tabernacles.
- The Feast of Tabernacles was the happiest of the seven Jewish festivals. It lasted eight days. In preparation for the festival, they built huts out of tree branches, reminding them how the Jews roamed the wilderness for 40 years. It also commemorated that God gave them water from a flint in the wilderness.
- There are three phrases in John 7 that refer to the Feast of Tabernacles:
● The first part of the chapter deals with the first part of the festival.
● The second part of the chapter deals with what happened in the middle of the festival.
● The third part of the chapter deals with the eighth day or the last day of the festival.
I'm going to study John 7:37-39, but I want you to remember what the rest of the chapter is about
(1) John 7:40-44 deals with the growing rebellion against our Lord. John 7:44 indicates they had false facts about Jesus; So their conclusions were also wrong.
(2) John 7:45-52 deals with the gripping examination of Jesus. Notice John 7:45-46 – Jesus said and:
• Angry waves were calmed - the blind could see - water became wine - the dead came out of the grave.
• Jesus still speaks today:
- make bitter hearts sweet - hurt hearts well
• Hint: Compare John 7:50-52 with John 7:47-49. These Pharisees, who thought only foolish people trusted Jesus, showed their own ignorance. There were prophets from Galilee: Jonah, Nahum, Elijah.
• If they had only looked, they would have known that Jesus was born in Bethlehem and was of the seed of David. (John 7:41-43)

Read the section:

Each day of the festival, a procession of people, led by the priest, went down to the pool of Siloam, took a golden jar, and filled the jar at the pool. The priest then carried it through the streets to the shouting and singing of the crowd and the sound of trumpets and cymbals. When the priest reached the temple, he poured out the water at the golden altar while all the people sang, "Therefore with joy we shall draw water from the wells of salvation" (Isaiah 12:3). After the water was completely poured on the altar, they all sang the Hallel (Ps. 113-118). They did this for seven days. On the eighth day, the last day of the great festival, they circled the altar seven times and remembered how the walls of Jericho fell down while they blew their horns and cried! The outpouring of water was a symbol of the Holy Spirit being poured out on God's people. On the last day, they did not throw out the water, reminding people that the promise had not been fulfilled.
At this point, Jesus raised his voice and said, "If anyone is thirsty, come to me and drink."
(a) Jesus knew they were going through an empty ceremony. Only he could bring them lasting joy.
(b) Many people have been saved, but they have very little victory in their lives. They were at Calvary for forgiveness, but they were not for power at Pentecost. Someone has said that somewhere between Calvary and Pentecost the Church is stuck.
(c) We are very much like Lazarus who rose from the dead... We have life, but we are still wrapped in the shrouds of old life. We have life but no power. That's why Jesus said, "Loose him and let him go."

I. The Savior's Invitation John 7:37

-What a claim! Jesus calls himself the living water!
-We live in a thirsty world – not only for the body, but also for the soul.
-People in our world today thirst for success, power, pleasure... but man's greatest need is to thirst for God, and many don't even know it.
● Jer. 2:13 Broken cisterns that leak... they promise fulfillment and satisfaction, but they deliver none of it. They replace God with joy and possessions; to make these things their god.
● Man's true thirst should be for God...Psalms 42:1; hp 63:1-4

A. The recipients
The gospel is universal - whoever wants it... That means no one is too bad to be saved... too far away... too old or too young.

B. The Requirements Thirst...Come...Drink
(1) Durst
• Thirst is a good thing. If you weren't thirsty, you would die because your body wouldn't know it needed to drink some water. Thirst lets you know you need something you don't currently have.
• By thirst, Jesus means that you recognize your inner need.
• Everyone is not thirsty... Some are blind to their need for God.
• Jesus, the living water, will say on the cross about 6 months later, “I thirst…” for He endured an eternity of thirst on the cross for us, as He suffered our judgment for our sin on the cross.
• What if we don't receive the living water? Luke 16:19-31 (v.24)

(2) Comm
• Not all thirsty come. Jesus says, "Do with your heart what you do with your feet when you go after a drink."
• "Come" is God's word!
. Noah enters the ark.
. Isa.1:18 "Come now and let us talk together..."
. Anyone can come
. rev. 22:17 The final invitation of the Bible.
• Come to ME - not to church, to baptistery...not for religion, but for a relationship!

(3) drinking
• You can be thirsty and come and still not drink and it won't do you any good.

• You cannot just go to a fountain of water and stand there and look at it and expect your thirst to be quenched. You must drink!
• You open your mouth (your heart) and absorb it into your being.

C. The Result John 7:38
• From within you...God will do the deepest possible work in your life.
• Hint: Not river, but rivers... not just water, but living water... life-giving water.
• Same. 12:3; Like 55:1-3

II. The Indwelling of the Spirit John 7:39

- At salvation, the Holy Spirit comes into your heart.
-Rom. 8:9
-John 14:16-17 He is in you wherever you go!
He doesn't just want to dwell in you; He wants to fulfill you put you in control of your life.

III. The Influence of Saints John 7:38

- Your life becomes a channel of blessing.
- There shall be an inflow...a outflow!

Is your life a channel of blessing? Does the love of God flow through you? Do you tell the Savior's lost? Are you ready to do his service?

Is your life a channel of blessing? Does it tell him daily? Have you spoken the word of salvation to those who die in sin?

We cannot be a channel of blessing unless our lives are free from known sin; We will be barriers and an obstacle to those we are trying to win.

Make me a channel of blessing today, make me a channel of blessing, I pray; my life possession, my blessing of service, make me a channel of blessing today.

What is flowing out of your life? Some are like an open sewer; nothing but dirt comes from her lips and her life.
- Others are like a spiritual artesian well overflowing with kindness, encouragement and love for others.

In the early 1900s there was a close-knit community in the South. They had a general store, a school where all children went to school, a meetinghouse where Baptists and Methodists took turns meeting one week and Methodists the next. Opposite the church house was the communal well with the ladle hanging on the side of the well which everyone took turns using...the children at school, the church people, the farmers coming to get their goods from the general store.

There was a beloved, respected man in the community who everyone called Uncle Billy. Uncle Billy was involved in a sawmill accident and lost his left hand at the sawmill. Uncle Billy was the unofficial announcer at both the Baptist and Methodist services.

If anyone had an announcement, they shared it with Uncle Billy, and he shared it with the church.

It happened that the people of the church got sick for some reason. The community doctor thought it wise for people to stop using the same dipper at the well. It was almost time for the service to begin. Instead of telling Uncle Billy to ask people not to all drink from the same ladle, he told the pastor.

This Sunday they should celebrate the Lord's Supper. The pastor thought, "Well, it won't hurt if I announce the use of the ladle for Uncle Billy this one time. The pastor made the announcement, saying, "The reason you shouldn't all drink from the same ladle is that you could catch what the sick of our church have."

People started looking at Uncle Billy to see what his reaction would be if he wasn't asked to make the announcement. He got up, walked to the front where the communion table was, and with his good hand and knob lifted the cloth from the juice trays. Then he took a small glass juice cup, held it for a moment, showed the cup to the congregation, and said, “We dare not drink all from the water dipper, lest we catch what others have. But as we drink from this cup of our Lord, may we all catch what Jesus has.”

Oh that we should all catch what Jesus has! His spirit... His character.

"If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink ... and rivers of living water will flow out of his belly."

Are you thirsty for Jesus? Really thirsty? Come and drink!

Jesus: The light of the world
Johannes 8:12

One of the biggest lawsuits was fought over a horrific car accident involving a Blue Mountain train. Not Blue Mountain, Ms., but Blue Mountain Palmerton, PA. The accident happened on a dark, rainy night when a speeding car came down the mountain road, made a sharp turn and crashed headfirst into the train. Several people died in the accident.
In the fiercely contested court battle, the signalman recounted in detail how he got off the train before reaching the level crossing and stood on the highway waving his lantern to signal each approaching vehicle. This was his usual behavior when the train approached this notoriously bad crossing. On this particular evening he had done exactly as he had been told and as he had done on many previous occasions.
Under determined cross-examination, he consistently answered every question about his procedures that particular night. Yes, he got off the train before the crossing. Yes, he was on the freeway. Yes, he waved his lantern sourly. He even jumped out of the way of the speeding car before it hit the train. The jury deliberated, and the railroad won because of this flagman's testimony.
About a year later the signalman, who had since retired from the railway, was fishing on one of the beautiful lakes. The lawyer representing the families saw him and asked how the fishing was going. The lawyer said: "You were a witness to a train accident last year. You know, that was the most competitive trial I've ever had. I should have won this case. You were the best witness I have ever heard. You were great. I lost this case because of your great performance. You were a determined and perfect witness.”
The humble flagman squirmed a little and said, "Oh man, was I scared that day. I've never been so scared in my entire life."
The lawyer replied: "Nobody would have ever known. You were great the way you treated me.”
"Oh, I was scared," said the man. "I was so afraid you would ask that question."
"Which question?" asked the lawyer.
"You know," the man replied. "I was afraid you'd ask, 'Did you light your lantern that night?'"
How many people walk through this spiritually dark world without their lantern being lit? Do you have the light of the Lord Jesus Christ within you? Is your lantern lit? Is it light trimmed?

You know that John writes his gospel to declare that Jesus is God made flesh; the Christ; and the messiah.
-As he writes, he has a plan in mind. He not only declares that Jesus is God come in the flesh and that He is the Christ; the Messiah, he also declares that Jesus is the "Great I AM"!
-Although Jesus was not “God in the flesh” in the OT, He was still active in the affairs of His OT people.
-John uses the Feast of Tabernacles and the O.T. Events it depicts to show that the events were really types of Christ.
● In John 6, Jesus transforms a boy's luncheon of loaves and fishes to teach that Moses was just the human agent who gave manna from heaven to his people. Jesus said that it was His Father who gave them bread from heaven and not Moses, and that He, Jesus, is the true bread from heaven.

● In John 7 the Feast of Tabernacles is celebrated, in which Moses gave them water from the rock
made of flint, but Jesus got up and said, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink... rivers of living water will flow out of his heart."
● In John 8 John emphasizes another aspect of the Feast of Tabernacles. The cloud of glory was given by God to guide and protect Israel during their forty year wanderings in the wilderness. Jesus stood up and said, "I am the light of the world."

With that in mind, I want us to look at Jesus: The Light of the World!

I. Our Lord's Declaration – John 8:12a

The first act of creation of God was the creation of the "light". (Gen. 1:3) This was not the first form of light, however, for the Bible says that "God is light." (1 John 1:5). Before physical light was created, supernatural light already existed; hence the spiritual is greater than the physical.

Light is often used to describe God or that which extends from Him to us.

1 Psalm 27:1 A Psalm of David. The LORD is my light and my salvation; who should I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; who should I fear?

2 Psalm 89:15 Blessed is the people that know the sound of joy: they shall walk, O LORD, in the light of thy countenance.

3 Psalms 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

4.Isaiah 9:2 The people that walk in darkness have seen a great light; who dwell in the land of the shadow of death, the light shines upon them.

When Jesus said, "I am the light of the world," he claimed to be God; to be the messiah; be the Christ!

Why is it called light?

● For the darkness of falsehood, He is the light of truth.
● To the darkness of ignorance, He is the light of wisdom.
● To the darkness of impurity, He is the light of holiness.
● For the darkness of sorrow, He is the light of joy.
● To the darkness of death, He is the light of life.

At the Feast of Tabernacles, just as the sun was beginning to set, they lit the two large candelabra in the temple courtyard. Each candelabra had seven prongs. When they were lit, the golden roof of the temple absorbed the reflection and cast the light in all directions.
- The Light spoke of the pillow of clouds by day and the pillow of fire by night that guided them through the wilderness. It spoke of the Shekinah glory of God and His presence with them.

Why was the cloud of fire or pillow of fire so important to Israel?

1.Bsp. 13:17-18, Bsp. 21-22;
Ex 13:17 And it came to pass that when Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them through the way of the land of the Philistines, though that was near; for God said, Lest the people, seeing war, perhaps repent and return to Egypt:
Ex 13:18 But God led the people round through the wilderness of the Red Sea; and the children of Israel went up out of the land of Egypt.

Ex 13:2 And the Lord went ahead of them by day in a pillar of cloud to show them the way; and at night in a pillar of fire to give them light; go day and night:
Ex 13:22 He did not remove the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night before the people.

- The light should be their guide; her guide. It was a sign of God's holy presence with them.
-The Lord Jesus – the light of the world – wants to be our leader; show us the way with His presence.
-Anz. 9:15-18
Numerals 9:15 And on the day that the tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, which is the tent of the testimony; and the evening was over the tabernacle like a fire until morning.
Num 9:16 So it was always: the cloud covered it by day, and the appearance of fire by night.
Numbers 9:17 And when the cloud was taken away from the tabernacle, the children of Israel went out afterwards, and in the place where the cloud dwelt the children of Israel pitched their tents.
Numbers 9:18 By the command of the LORD the children of Israel went out, and by the command of the LORD they encamped; as long as the cloud lay over the tabernacle they rested in their tents.

- The cloud told them when to move and when to stop.

2.Bsp. 14:19-20, 24-25
Ex 14:19 And the angel of God that was going before the camp of Israel departed and went after them; and the pillar of cloud went out before her face and stood behind her.
Ex 14:20 And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and they had cloud and darkness, but to these there was light by night, so that one did not approach the other all night.

Ex 14:24 And it came to pass that in the morning watch the LORD saw through the pillar of fire and cloud upon the Egyptian army, and troubled the Egyptian army,
Ex 14:25 and took off the wheels of their chariots so that they beat them hard, so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from Israel! for the LORD will fight for them against the Egyptians.

-The cloud protected God's people from their enemies. When Pharaoh and the Egyptians persecuted God's people, he protected them.

3. The cloud also became a shield for God's people. It would protect them from the hot desert sun during the day and the near-freezing temperatures at night.

- Since the night fire gave light to Israel, they never experienced all the darkness
They wandered for 40 years.
-This fire was supernatural; not just ordinary fire, and the Israelites certainly understood that. No natural fire could have lasted over the Ark of the Covenant for 40 years. God Himself sustained the fire that was never quenched.

Of course, our greatest need for the light is to banish the darkness. We live in a dark world. Man walks in darkness without Christ.

What kind of darkness?

1 Eph 6:12 For we do not fight against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness on high.
- Satan and sin have brought darkness into this world.

2.2Co 4:4 to whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine upon them.

Eph 4:17 I say this now, and testify in the Lord, that henceforth you shall not walk as other nations walk in the vanity of their minds,
Eph 4:18 with darkened minds, alienated from the life of God by the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their hearts:
Ephesians 4:19 who have given themselves up to licentiousness without feeling, to work out all impurity with greed.
-This is mental blindness. Satan blinds people to God's truth.

3.1Jo 2:11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
-This is moral obscurity with no real insight into right and wrong.

4. Spiritual Darkness
-Everyone but Jesus is in spiritual darkness and without salvation.
-Helen Keller, who was born blind and deaf, said: "I feel sorry for people who have eyes and still can't see."
When Jesus said, “I am the light of the world,” he used the Greek term ego eimi, meaning “I and I alone; I and no one else."
- Jesus and Jesus alone is all the light we need to bring us into God's holy presence.

Open my eyes to see glimpses of truth you have for me.
Put in my hands the wondrous key that will unlock and set me free:
Silently I wait for you now, prepare my God to see your will
Open my eyes, enlighten me, Divine Spirit!

II. Our Lord's Requirement – ​​John 8:12b

No one has to go through life in spiritual darkness, Christ is the light of the world and he will shine in our hearts if we let him in!

A woman named Rose Crawford had been blind for 50 years. "I just can't believe it!" She gasped as the doctor removed the bandages from her eyes after she was recovering from delicate surgery at an Ontario hospital. She wept with joy as, for the first time in her life, a dazzling and beautiful world of shapes and colors greeted eyes that could now see. The amazing thing about the story, however, is that 20 years of her blindness was unnecessary. Little did she know that surgical techniques had been developed and that surgery could have restored her sight at age 30. The doctor said, "She just thought there was nothing that could be done about her condition. A lot of things in her life could have been different.”

As I read the news report on her case, a few questions came to mind. Why did she continue to assume that her situation was hopeless? Had no one told her about the wonderful advances in eye surgery? Then I thought of the plight of those not reached by the gospel. How many will continue to live in moral blindness if we don't bring them to the Savior? Millions will never know anything but spiritual darkness because no one shared with them the light that came into the world.

What does it mean to “follow” Christ? In Greek it means several things:

1. The word is used for a soldier following his captain. You follow without questions. you just obey

2. The word is used for a slave who attends to the needs of his master. We are to follow the call of our Lord and do it with joy. We are to serve him!

3. The word means to follow the advice of a wise counselor.

4. It means following established laws or standards. It's all a matter of obedience.

We should never try to alter or bend the light our Lord gives us. That would only spell disaster.

The captain of the ship looked into the dark night and saw faint light in the distance. He immediately requested his signalman to send a message: "Change course south 10 degrees." Promptly came back: "Change course north 10 degrees."

The captain was angry; his command had been ignored. So he sent a second message: 'Change course south 10 degrees - I'm the captain!' Soon another message came: 'Change course north 10 degrees - I'm a seaman, third class, Jones. "

Immediately the captain sent a third message, knowing the fear it would provoke: "Change course south 10 degrees - I am a battleship." Then came the reply: "Change course north 10 degrees - I am." a lighthouse.”

In the midst of our dark and misty times, all sorts of voices are shouting commands into the night, telling us what to do, how to adjust our lives. Out of the darkness a voice signals something quite the opposite – almost absurd. But the voice happens to be the light of day, and we ignore it at our peril.

III. Our Lord's Deliverance - John 8:12c

If people know that Jesus is the light, why don't they follow him?
Joh 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light has come into the world, and men loved darkness more than light, because their deeds were evil.

Jesus demands a decision. What are you going to do with the light?

- Someone said: “We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark: the true tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.”
- To reject Jesus is to live in constant darkness.

What happens if you don't come to Jesus who is the light?
Joh 8:21 Then Jesus said to them again: I am going my way, and you will seek me and die in your sins; where I'm going you can't come.

Joh 8:24 I have said unto you, that ye shall die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am, you will die in your sins.

Life's greatest tragedy
Johannes 8:21,24

I want to preach today about life's greatest tragedy, but before I read the scripture, I want to ask you a question that I've been asking people over the past week. Here's the question: "What's the worst thing that could happen to you?"

1. One person said, "The worst thing that could happen to me is if my wife leaves me." While that would be bad, it wouldn't be the worst thing that could happen to you.

2. Another said, "If something happened to one of my children..." How sad that would be, but that's not the worst thing that could happen to you.

3. Another said, "To find out I'm terminally ill and can't get well..." But that's not the worst of it.

4. Another said, "Losing all my possessions: my house, my investments." But that wouldn't be the worst.

Well then what is it? What is life's greatest tragedy?

Read John 8:21, 24 (Dying in your sins)

Why do people die in their sins? Jesus gives several reasons, as we will see in the rest of this chapter, but Jesus gives two main reasons: We need to face the sin question and the son question.

A. The question of sin

The first way to make sure you die in your sins and don't get into the Father's house, not heaven, is to believe that you don't need to be saved. Just to be sure you're okay and don't need a savior.
- By far the most difficult people to reach are those who don't believe they need to be saved. They think they're okay just the way they are.
- In other words, you are self-righteous.

No one ever comes to Christ who does not see himself as a sinner whose sin must be taken away.
- Billy Graham has said throughout his ministry that he believes 60 to 70 percent of church members are being lost. people who grew up in the Church and have been a part of the Church their entire lives; and yet they have never really been saved.
- They can talk about how good God is and how great God is, but they cannot talk about a personal relationship with Jesus; a time when they personally recognized that they were sinners because of the convicting power of the Holy Spirit in their lives and when they asked Jesus to forgive them their sins and come into their hearts in total surrender to Jesus.

B. The Son Question – John 8:24

A second way to ensure that you will die in your sins is to be an unbeliever. Just don't believe. Just don't believe the gospel. Reject the gospel.

"Well, what should I believe?"
- “If you do not believe that I am He; that I am who I claim to be.” To believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be, God in human flesh, the Savior who died for your sin and rose again. The Gospel - You can go to hell if you just don't believe it!

You don't have to go out and kill someone to go to hell. You don't have to be bad. Just don't believe. That's what Jesus says!
- Hell is not for people who are all criminals; not just for bad guys. Hell is for anyone and everyone who rejects Christ.
- Satan's big lie is that you don't need Jesus as your personal Savior.

Why is dying in your sin the greatest tragedy of your life? Because if you die in your sin:

I. Your decision is made - Matt. 10:32-33; Revelation 21:8–27

I think of those who made the WRONG decision and choice regarding Jesus and died in their sins:

Mat.19:16-22 The rich young ruler

Notice, "What good thing should I DO that I may have eternal life?" You cannot be saved by following rules or routines or a system.
-What a tragedy! He was so close to salvation; but turned away. What a foolish decision - to trade your soul for the goods of this world and not commit yourself to Jesus!

Acts 24:24-25 This records Paul's defense before Felix, governor of Judea. Paul was accused of causing a "plague" of discord among all Jews and of being the ringleader of the sect "The Way" and preaching that there would be a resurrection of both the just and the unjust. Paul came before Felix, and as he preached to him, the Holy Spirit so convinced his heart that he "trembled."
- Two more times before this account in Acts we are told that people trembled.
In Acts 9:6, when God's great light threw Saul, who was to become Paul, to the ground and said, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” Paul replied, “Who are you, Lord? Then the Lord said, “I AM Jesus whom you are persecuting. You have a hard time kicking the spikes. So he said, trembling, "Lord, what do you want me to do?"

Acts 16:29 Paul and Silas were in a Philippine prison and were singing songs at midnight. Suddenly one
Earthquakes shook the prison's foundations and all the supplies fell from the prisoners' hands and feet. The jailer came in SHIMBING and asked, "Gentlemen, what must I do to be saved?" Both the Filipino jailer and Saul trembled and were saved; but not Felix.

But Felix trembled and said, "When I have a more opportune time, I will call you." We have no record that he ever did.
-Two sworn enemies of your soul are yesterday and tomorrow.
-Some people look at their past and think, “I'm too sinful; God cannot or will not forgive me.”

Sometimes people think, "I'm too bad to be saved," or "I'm too good, I don't need saving," or "I'm too young to be saved," or "I'm too old to be saved." ' or 'I'm not ready yet. If I get ready, I'll be saved."

But where yesterday killed their thousands, tomorrow killed their tens of thousands until they die in their sins and hear Jesus say, "Too late! Too late!"

(3.) Acts 26:27-28 Paul comes before King Agrippa. Again he speaks of the resurrection of the dead when both the just and the unjust will stand before the Lord. This time Paul even gives his personal testimony of when he was saved. Then he said: “Do you believe the prophets? I know that you believe what they said.” Then Agrippa said to Paul: “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.”

Almost convinced to believe now; Almost convinced to receive Christ;
Now a soul seems to be saying, "Go, spirit, go your way
I'll call you on a more favorable day."

Almost persuaded, come, come today, Almost persuaded, don't turn away
Jesus invites you here, angels linger near,
Prayers rise from hearts so dear; O wanderer, come!

Almost can't help it; But it is almost impossible to fail! Sad sad
that bitter howl. Almost lost.

A young college student attended a BSU revival on his college campus. God spoke to his heart, but the young man said, "No." Again the Holy Spirit spoke to him. He was stirred morning, noon and night throughout the week. Finally he said, "God, leave me alone and I'll leave you alone." He said that God never spoke to his heart again. What a tragedy to die in your sins!

- Tell about a lady who asked Junior Hill to speak to her son. He went; told him who he was; invited him to revival. The 35-year-old son replied, "I have a ___ ____ car and I know where the ___ ____ church is and I don't need a ___ preacher to talk to me about Jesus." That night at church she asked Lady: "Have you spoken to my boy?" Junior told her what happened...she told him this story: "When he was 9 years old. Alt, we went to a revival meeting. In response to the invitation he said, “Mother, can I come down and trust Jesus?” She said, “No, you are too young.” Again he said, “Mother, please let me go.” … She said, “No. A third time he said, "Mother, I know Jesus wants me to go to him." She said no." The mother said, "Brother. Hill, that was the last time my son would go to Jesus I live knowing that I prevented my son from trusting Jesus.”

- I see parents with children whose hearts are soft and who carry them to every Sunday except church (ball games, lake, etc.) and it never occurred to them that they are preventing their own child from being saved . Instead of pointing them to Jesus, they point them away from Jesus.

II. Your exemption is forfeited

Heb.9:27 This is why it is so important to come to Jesus early.

dr Jack Hayles, pastor of the largest independent Baptist church, picked up his young grandchild for the first time. Someone overheard him saying to the child, "All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God... The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord... For God has loved him as much as the world... but have everlasting life... whoever will call on the name of the LORD will be saved.” Somebody said, “You don't think the baby understands you, do you?” He said, “No , but I want him to get used to hearing the gospel from a young age.”

What a contrast to many parents today. I heard from a father who never went to church. Mom always went. When the child was 5 or 6 years old, he was sitting on his father's lap one Sunday when the mother was trying to get him to go to Sunday school with her, and the child said, "We don't want to be an old Christian , shall we papa?”

III. Your destiny is set

dr Mariece Rollins wrote a book called Beyond Death's Door. dr Rollins is a cardiologist who has long disbelieved in God. One day while giving a man a stress test, the man fell to the ground and his heart stopped beating. dr Rollins worked with the man's heart and revived him. When he came to, the man kept saying, "Get me out...get me out...get me out."
"From where?" "I was about to be thrown into hell." He said that during his years as a cardiologist he resuscitated people who described both heaven and hell.

If we dr. If it weren't for Rollin's book to tell us about life in the afterlife, we would have a better book - the Bible!

The Bible says hell is a place of:

A. Leiden
-Luke 16:24 "I am tormented in this flame"
-Frosted. 22:13 "There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

B. Separation
-Luke 16:26 "There is set a great gulf"

C. Sadness
-Those in Hell will remember every opportunity to trust Jesus
-If people could spend 5 min. If they look at hell, they would repent

Bob Herrington: How far away is heaven/hell? Just a heartbeat.

Like father, like son
Johannes 8:31-59

This passage is about fathers and sons. In our text the word "father" occurs over a dozen times.
- As you study the passage, you will find that the word "father" can refer to one of three fathers. Sometimes the reference could refer to Abraham, the father of believers (8:38). When Jesus speaks to these religious people, he tells them that they are from their father the devil (8:44). Jesus then speaks of his Father, God the Father.

Consider the relationship between God the Son and God the Father.
● In John 8:29 Jesus said, “I always do what pleases my Father.”
● In John 8:49 Jesus said, “I honor my Father.”

It is an urgent matter to disappoint one's earthly father.
- I was watching the Andy Griffith Show and Andy "thought" Opie was being selfish for not donating to a children's home. The real reason Opie couldn't give anything to the home was because he had spent all his money on a coat for a little girl who didn't have a coat, but Andy didn't know that. When Opie told Andy he couldn't give, Andy said, "O.K., but I want you to know that I'm disappointed in you." Little Opie's face looked like he'd been kicked in the stomach. He was heartbroken because his father was disappointed in him.
-My dad never told me he was disappointed in me, but there were a couple of times I could tell by the look on his face that he was disappointed in me.
-Let me tell you something more serious. It displeases our heavenly Father. Every day you and I displease our Heavenly Father. We displease Him with our sins, our disobedience, our indifference, worldliness. I wish it wasn't like that. I wish I had never done, said, or thought anything that displeased God. I wish it could be said of you and me that we only did what pleases Him. But we are sinful people. If God were not a God of grace, forgiveness, and mercy, there would be no hope for any of us.

In this passage, Jesus cuts through the facade like no other and gets to the heart of the matter about real, genuine salvation.
- These religious people who confronted Jesus thought they were saved and going to heaven, but in some hard-hitting teachings, Jesus shows them who their real father was.

A. They thought they were saved because of their inheritance - John 8:33,37,39-41,44

Now let me clear that up for you. In John 8:37a Jesus said that it was true that they were the physical descendants of Abraham and part of the covenant people, but just because that was true does not make them children of God.
-The Jews were proud of their heritage as descendants of Abraham. They were convinced that their eternal destiny was determined by being Abraham's seed.
- Here's what grieved the Jews: Jesus said that a Jew who was part of Abraham's family could also be a child of the devil.

-Remember that Abraham took Hager as a slave and she gave birth to Ishmael. He was undeniably the seed of Abraham, but he was not the son of promise.
Issac war.

● Romans 2:28-29
● Romans 9:6-8
● Romans 4:11 Abraham was the father of all who believed.

Church people today have something in common with the Jews of Jesus' day.
-People in the church today, especially in the "Bible Belt", are proud of their heritage. ASK them if they are going to heaven and they will tell you that their grandfather was a preacher; her uncle founded the church; her mother was the Grand Potess of the WMU; they are faithful members who pay tithing, but they themselves have never had a personal experience with the Lord Jesus. They live on second- and third-hand faith, and that's tragic.
- Can there be anything worse than thinking that you have been serving Christ your whole life and then hearing Jesus say it as He does in Matthew. 7:23 - "I have never known you: depart from me, you who practice injustice."

B. They thought they were saved, but they manifested the works of the devil - John 8:37-41,44

Mark three words in John 8:44 - lust, murderer, liar

Lust or desire: Satan's desire was to dethrone God in his life. He put his desires ahead of God's desires. He sought his own desires and pleasures before God.

A Murderer from the Beginning: Satan was not just trying to deceive Eve or encouraging rebellion against God in Genesis 3, although he was trying to do those things. Satan's role in the fall was nothing short of premeditated murder. Satan knew that if he could get Adam and Eve to eat from the forbidden tree, it would result in their death and that death would befall all their descendants.

Satan is a liar by nature: you have heard me say that you are never more like the devil than
when you lie, because Satan is the father of lies. lying is his nature.
Jesus, on the other hand, always does what pleases his Father; He is life and gives life;
He is truth.

- You can tell who your father is by looking at your works.
-Jesus told the Jews that they could not be God's children and wanted to kill Him
is truth.

C. Real, genuine, saving faith is more than one's job; It is also your own practice; it is more than belief; it is conduct—John 8:31-32, 34-36

True faith will stand the test of time.
- Some are emotionally stirred by a touching story or a powerful preacher. They willingly respond to an invitation. They "feel so good". For a few weeks or months they abstain from certain sinful practices. But it doesn't take long for them to go back to their old ways and feel like they always have.
-Sometimes we try to help them or justify their way of life by saying, “Oh, they just backslid” because we don't want to admit that they weren't really saved.
-A drunk man was allegedly arrested at one of D.L. Moody's meeting saved.

A few weeks later, Moody and one of the men from the church were walking down the street. They looked down a side street and there was this man with a bottle to his mouth. The man who was with Moody said, "Mr. Moody, isn't that one of your converts?" Moody replied, "He must be one of my converts. It is quite evident that he is not one of the Lord's converts.”
● 1. Johannes 2:4
● Good works are not a condition for obtaining eternal life; but they are proof that the faith exercised is real faith.

Faith without works is dead. Faith opens the door; but works are the evidence that the Holy Spirit has come in to change man's character.
- Faith brings light into the soul; continued faith brings devotion to Christ, which breaks the power of indwelling sin and sets free those in bondage to sin.
-1. Johannes 3:5-10

There are children of God and children of the devil.
- The children of God have a steadfast faith in Jesus Christ and a life of obedience to Christ. They strive to purify themselves as Jesus Himself is pure.
-There are children of the devil. Some have deluded themselves into believing that they actually belong to God. But their hope is not in Christ. It's in something else. Often their origins or their own work are self-righteous. Their faith does not stand the test and they are not distinguished by obedience to Christ. They appear to be good people, but when push comes to shove, they have chosen their own way and not God's.

whose child are you

"Oh, what a savior!"
Selected passages from John

Nobody is like Jesus!

What I want to do for a few minutes is just brag about Jesus! I'll say it again: nobody is like Jesus!
● Song of Solomon 5:16 – “He is very lovely”.
Jesus is perfect beauty. He's not missing anything!

● Song of Solomon 5:10 – “He is chief among the ten thousand”.
"He's the best of the best."

● Col. 3:11 Christ is all and in all.
Because Jesus Christ is the Savior of all believers, He is likewise the all-sufficient Lord of them all.

● 1 Peter 2:7 “To you who believe (in him) he is precious.”

- For those who have trusted Him personally as Savior and Lord of their lives, according to them, no one is valued or honored or respected or worshiped more than Jesus Christ!
- That's not the world view. The world does not honor Him at all. In fact, they want to get rid of him.
-But for the saint, the child of God, He is our best friend, we want to obey Him perfectly and serve Him. We would be willing to die for him.
-Why? Because nobody else could do for us what he did for us. We owe him all our hopes in heaven. We have no hope of salvation except in Him!

● Phil. 2:9-11 “Jesus is the sweetest name that I know, and it is just like his lovely name, and that is why I love him so; Oh Jesus is the sweetest name I know.”

Jesus is our all in all. Someone put it this way:

For the Architect, He is the supreme cornerstone.
For the artist, he is absolutely lovely.
For the astronomer He is the light of the world.
For the baker it is the living bread.
For the banker it is the hidden treasure.
For the biologist, He is life.
For the builder, He is the sure foundation.
For the carpenter, He is the door.
For the doctor he is the great doctor.
For the farmer he is the lord of the harvest.
For the florist he is the rose of Sharon
For the geologist, He is the Rock of Ages.
For the lawyer he is the lawyer.
For the philosopher He is the wisdom of God.

To the sculptor, He is the living stone.
For the theologian he is the originator and finisher of our faith.
For the traveler, He is the New and Living Way.
To the sinner, He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
To the Holy One, He is our blessed assurance.

People have tried in vain to adequately describe the Lord Jesus, but no human language can describe Him.
Although I could never adequately describe Him, I would like to share four things about our Lord:

I. Our Lord's Requirements

Jesus claims to be God come in the flesh. He repeatedly claims to be the Great I Am of Exodus 3. Moses stands by the burning bush and hears God telling him to lead God's people out of Egypt and into the Promised Land.
- In the Gospel of John, Jesus expands his name when he says: “I am the bread of life, I am the light of the world, I am the door, I am the good shepherd, I am the way, the truth, and the life.

Notice John 8:29, 46, 49

II. The character of our Lord

I could preach on this one point for years, but I just want to share one verse with you: Hebrews 7:26

A. Christ is "holy" in His relationship with God the Father.

Not just on the outside, but pure in the heart. He is perfectly just. He has a personal holiness and is absolutely perfect; Holy. No sin dwells in Him. He is without any pollution.

B. He is "harmless" in His relation to man.

He never hurt anyone. He has done no harm to anyone; not in their name, person, or property, and He never will.
-He is the only person who has walked the earth who can be said to have never, in any way, wronged another.

C. In relation to himself he is "undefiled".

He is free from any contamination. He never had an improper desire or passion.
-Although he took the blame for our sins, he never involved himself in any wrong.

D. He was separated from sinners

Although He miraculously assumed a true human form, He did not have a sinful nature that could be the source of every sinful act.

-He did not share in the schemes, pleasures, principles, or views of men about a sinful world.
-O, what a savior!

III. The magic of our Lord

Let me give just one example from the multitude of examples I could use.

In Song of Solomon 2:1 we read, "I AM the rose of Sharon and the lilies of the valley."

The Son of the Most High calls himself "the rose of Sharon and the lily of the valleys" to express his presence with his people in this world AND the ease of their access to him and the beauty and sweetness they find in him.

Let me start with the second sentence first: "the lily of the valley"
- Did you notice that the word "valleys" is plural? valleys are low places; hard spots; test sites.
- For those who are in the valleys, he is a lily.
- Lilies are often surrounded by thorns. The wicked of this world have no love for Christ and are like thorns, worthless, useless, harmful and hurtful. God's people are lilies among them, scratched, torn; facing difficulties and difficulties.
- But Jesus is a lily in the valleys. The lily represents two things: whiteness and sweetness. For those in the valleys, He is the lily. He keeps his people white or pure, and he keeps them sweet even in the midst of valleys.
- But notice that the church, the people of God, is supposed to be LIKE a lily. The beauty of Christ is seen in his people. They are to resemble the Lord Jesus. They are meant to be LIKE lilies, for they are made like Christ. In their hearts the love of Christ has been poured out.
Christ is not only the lily of the valley, he is also the rose of Sharon.
-Why a rose? Because it is the chief or king of flowers. Nothing compares to the rose.

Roses were then used in three ways that we no longer practice today, but these three practices give us the spiritual meaning. Remember that Jesus is the rose of Sharon. Back then, roses were used for:

A. Washing or bathing

On this day, a traveler might wish for a rose bath. Many roses were placed in a tub for bathing. Some of the roses would be crushed and others left whole. Everything would be stirred in the water. The properties of the rose give a calming feeling and the longer you stay in the bath, the more the scent of the rose penetrates the skin cells.
- After the bath, the person walked down the street and nobody had to ask where he had been. They carried the influence of the rose scent with them everywhere.
- The closer you and I get to the Rose of Sharon and the longer we stay close to Him, the more people around us should know about it.
- Our partners should feel the fragrance of the Lord in our lives. Our children, the people we work with, the people around us should be able to say that we've been with Jesus.

B. Medicine

People extracted the nectar from the roses and mixed it with water. They would drink it as a cleanser; not for the outside, but for the inside.
-Religion works to purify the outside; what you can see; but Jesus cleanses the inside.
-To really clean up the outside, you need to clean the inside first. Isn't that what Jesus does?

C. Refreshing

The nectar could also be mixed with other things and if ingested it would energize the person. It would give them momentum. Most of us need that from the Lord.

IV. Our Lord's Mercy

The most important thing Jesus came for us is what we cannot do for ourselves.
- "He came to seek and to save what was lost."

Jesus is absolutely beautiful. He is precious to those who believe in him.

Do you know him? is he real to you

I was once blind, but now I see
Johannes 9:1-12

If there had been a daily newspaper in Jerusalem in Jesus' day, I wonder how the headlines would have read when Jesus performed His miracles.
1.Man turns water into wine
2. The young rabbi heals the son of the royal official from afar
3. One walks on water and calms a storm
4.Young Miracle Worker feeds 5,000 with the boy's lunch
5. Lame walks again

There were no newspapers in His day, but Jesus was undoubtedly the talk of the town.

When we come to John 9, we see Jesus healing a man who was born blind.
- It is interesting that of all the healing miracles that Jesus performed, this is the only congenital disease that Jesus healed. That said, this is the only person we know of who was "born" with an illness that Jesus healed. All the others he healed came into contact with their illness in childhood or adulthood.
-John must have done some research on this subject, for he says in John 9:32 that “since the world” there is no record of a man born blind ever being healed; at least in his time. There were cases in our time of modern medicine, but none in his time.

May I point out that of the 33 recorded miracles performed by Jesus, 18 were requested and 15 initiated by Himself.
- This means that the blind man got his sight because of the compassion and love and mercy and grace of our Lord. This man was blind. Jesus could have walked right past him and he would never have known. Jesus could have withheld His healing power and the man would never have known. But Jesus stopped and met this man's need. He does the same with us!

Of all the disabilities men and women can curse, blindness has to be one of the saddest. Blind from birth, this man has never seen the splendor of a sunrise or the elegance of a sunset. He never saw the green of the trees and grass or the blue of the sky. He has never seen the snow-capped mountains. He never saw the wonders of the beasts or the birds that flew in the sky. He never saw his mother's or father's face or the smile of a happy child. He lived his entire life in a state of total darkness.
-But there is something far worse than physical blindness, and that is mental blindness. The truth is that every human being who is born is born spiritually blind. Each of us needs divine surgery performed by the Great Physician so that we can see, spiritually clearly.

The Bible often speaks of those who have separated from Jesus as being spiritually blind......2 Cor.4:4;
Johannes 3:3; Eph. 4:17-19
- There is a great parallel between the physically blind and the spiritually blind.

I. The condition of man - John 9:1

A blind person is noticeable to the sighted, although the blind person cannot see anyone.

-Sometimes the clothing worn by blind people identifies them as a blind person. This was especially true in Jesus' time. You will remember that blind Bartimaeus took off his cloak when he regained his sight. This coat may have marked him as a blind man.
-Today, special dark glasses can mark you as a blind person, or a specially marked cane, or a guide dog. If you were to look a blind man in the eye, his eyes would indicate that he is blind.

As an application of this truth, a Christian notices recognizable characteristics when he sees someone who is spiritually blind.
- The lost person does not see on a spiritual level. They hate the Christ of Scripture. In their dark state they loathe mention of Jesus in public prayers; They tear down the cribs and try to remove prayer from the schools. The ACLU is made up of Pharisaical people like those of Jesus' day. Until their spiritual eyes are opened they will still refuse to believe.
-Only Jesus can give spiritual vision.

II. The Confusion Around Man - John 9:2-3

Do you believe these disciples? Instead of seeing this man in PITY, they saw him as PUZZLE!
- You stand over this man and engage in a theological debate about the cause of his blindness! “Lord, has he sinned or have his parents sinned? Who's to blame? Why was he born blind? Obviously God is punishing him for some sin. What was that and who is to blame?"

Is that how you look at someone who is suffering, or someone who has experienced a crisis, or someone who has suffered a tragic loss?
- "I wonder what great sin they have committed that would cause God to do this to them?" They just assume that God is punishing them for some sin.
Your question reflects the notion then, as now, that sickness is associated with sin.
-The Book of Job should have already answered this false idea, but it persists even today. Illness may or may not be caused by a specific sin.

The disciples saw three reasons why people suffer:

A. Prenatal Sin

Many Jews believed that an infant could sin before it was born. The example they often cited was Jacob grabbing his brother Esau's heel in the womb.
- Does it seem silly to you that a baby could sin in its mother's womb? it hurts me
- The Bible says that we are born with a sinful nature, but we did not commit any sin in the womb. How are we tempted in the womb?

B. Parental Sin

Children are not punished for the sins of their parents. Children can suffer the consequences of their parents' sins. The mother may have been a drug addict or have AIDS or another disease that can be passed on to the child.

C. Personal Sin

After the healing of the paralytic in John 5:14: “Behold, you are made whole. Sin no more, lest something worse happen to you.
-In John 9:3 Jesus did not mean that the blind man never sinned or that his parents never sinned. He said THAT blindness was not the result of their sin.

If you read John 9:3-4 in the KJV, it sounds like Jesus is saying that the reason the man was born blind was so that God's healing work could work on him.
-That poses a problem. Did God allow this man to be born blind just so that he could be glorified by being healed on this occasion?
- Did God want this man to walk in physical darkness all these years to heal him at this point? Such a position is contrary to the nature of God.

The problem is a matter of punctuation. Originally, the Greek text had no punctuation marks other than question marks. So, aside from question marks, the punctuation as we have it is uninspired. This was added later. The one who added it did so according to their own interpretation of the meaning. We are entitled to use our own if it does not contradict the overall teaching of the Bible. Men like G. Campbell Morgan, J. Vernon McGee and Hershel Hobbs translate the verses as follows:
"Neither did this man sin, nor did his parents." Note the period instead of the colon (KJV) or comma (NKJV). Jesus emphatically denied that his blindness was caused by either. As in many other instances, Jesus abruptly brushes aside false teachings. And then He continued. "But in order that the works of God may be manifest in him, we must work the works of him that sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no man can work." (Night is a reflection of death. Opportunities pass quickly. Don't waste your life.) "As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
-Jesus did not say that God allowed this blindness in order to glorify himself. He simply acknowledged the fact of the man's condition and refused to discuss the cause.

III. The healing for the man - John 9:6-7

As I was preparing this message it just hit me, there is no record of Jesus even asking this man if he wanted to be healed and get his sight. I'm sure he did, but Jesus just knelt in front of the man, spat on the dusty floor, made clay with his saliva, and anointed his eyes.
- I wonder if the disciples thought, “Why is Jesus doing this? He's already blind. How does adding mud to a blind man's eyes help him see?"

Another time it is reported that Jesus spat to bring about healing. In Mark 7:33 they had brought a man who was deaf and dumb for Jesus to heal. Jesus used a kind of sign language to tell the man what he was going to do. Then Jesus put his fingers in his ears, spat on his fingers and touched the tongue of the man and he was healed.

It is interesting that Jesus spat on the ground. When our spit is released, it is often in a fit of rage, in the height of anger, and will sometimes spit on a victim. This is how spit is associated with a curse.

-You will remember how Jesus stood before the High Priest at His trial and they accused Him
they spat blasphemy in his face; an insulting way of judging him.

Why did Jesus spat on the ground, made mud, applied it to the man's eyes and told him to wash in the pool of Siloam? I don't know; neither does anyone else, although there have been many conjectures.
-I tell you this, He didn't have to use the mud or the pond to heal the man.
Whatever the reason, Jesus demonstrates the beautiful principle of applying different approaches to different people.
- The same goes for salvation. Most of us are so insecure in our faith that we want all to receive salvation the same way and we want all to express it the same way we have.

Jesus healed three blind people and he did it differently for each one.
• In mate. 9:29 Jesus healed a blind man by touching his eyes.
• In Mark 8:22-26, Jesus spat in the eyes of a blind man and touched his eyes twice before he could see.
• Here is John 9. Jesus spat on the ground, made clay, put the clay on his eyes and told him to wash in the pool of Siloam.

Vance Havner said that if the three groups ever got together they would try to convert each other to the method Jesus used with them and start three different denominations: The One Touch Baptist, The Two Touch Baptist and The Mud-in- the- Eye Baptist.

Helen Keller said the greatest tragedy is having two good eyes and still not being able to see.

When they asked this man what happened to him and how he could see, he said, "Jesus did it." The tense in Greek is that he kept saying, "Jesus did it, Jesus did it, Jesus did it.”
- Note John 9:24-25 If you have been given spiritual sight you will know one thing: "Once I was blind, but now I see, and Jesus did it!"

It's no secret what God can do, what He has done for others, what He will do for you. With arms wide open He will forgive you, It is no secret what God can do.”

IV. The Conversion of Man - John 9:35-38

Observe the progress of this man's faith: in 9:11 he calls Him "a man named Jesus"; in 9:17 he calls him "a prophet"; in John 9:33 he calls him a man of God; in John 9:38 he said, "Lord, I believe" and worshiped Him.

What a testimony! “I was blind once, but now I see!” Jesus touched him and he was changed forever.
- Do you have such a certificate? When you get spiritual vision, people will know.

A little boy heard the pastor say, “You can ask Jesus to come into your heart and he will come in.” The little boy said to the pastor, “But Jesus is a man in a man's body. i'm just a little boy If I ask Him to come in, He'll jump on me!" The pastor said, "That's right."

Redemption: An eye-opening experience
Johannes 9:8-25

Before reading the passage

John 9 deals with the miracle of seeing a man born blind.
- Jesus and his disciples left the temple grounds because the Jews had been picking up stones and wanted to stone him to death for claiming to be the son of God.
- It was the Sabbath day and these Jews, who wanted to kill Jesus because He had healed a cripple on the Sabbath just days before, were picking up stones to stone Jesus on the Sabbath! In other words, it was wrong for Jesus to heal a man on the Sabbath, but they didn't mind killing Jesus on the Sabbath.

-As Jesus and His disciples left the temple area, Jesus saw a man who had been born blind.
- The disciples did not see this man in pity, but they saw him as a theological enigma. They asked, "Who sinned, this man or his parents?" Jesus said that neither he nor his parents were the cause of his being born blind, but that the glory of God could be made known through him.

- Then Jesus spat on the ground, made clay and put the clay on his eyes and told him to wash in the pool of Siloam and he would see.
-This is a strange thing! Putting clay on the eyes of a sighted man would blind the sighted, but Jesus put clay on the eyes of a blind man and told him to wash and he could see.

Now we're going to see a strange reaction to this miracle from this man's friends, enemies, and family.

Read the section

I. His Friends' Curiosity John 9:8-12

- These friends and neighbors who have known him for a long time; maybe saw him every day, started quarreling among themselves.
-Some said, "He's the same man." Others said, "No, it just looks like him." The man said, "It's me!"
- Have you ever been with someone who just met Jesus and Jesus changed their life in a way that makes people wonder if it's the same person?
- “Well, it sure looks like him/her, but they sure are different. He/She doesn't talk the same way... The language is different... They talk about things they've never talked about before.
-"Your interest is different. They've never been interested in the Bible or the Church or the things of God before; now that's all they're interested in.” What happened?
- The tense of the verb in John 9:10 is that they kept asking him how he got his sight back.
-2 Kor. 5:17

II. The Condemnation of His Enemies John 9:13-17, 24-34

-His friends take him to his enemies, the Pharisees, and even they are confused and divided.
Johannes 9:13-16

- Same tense of the verb is used... The Pharisees kept asking him, “How did you manage?
preserve your sight?”
- Note the division: some said Jesus was not of God; others said that a sinner cannot open blind eyes.

- Verse John 9:17 They start asking again how he got his sight.

- Verse John 9:24-25 Note: "We know" and "One thing I know" "Give glory to God" means confessing your sins. Say the truth.
- Verse John 9:26-34 He said sarcastically, "Why do you want to hear the story again, do you also want to become one of his disciples?"

III. The cowardice of his family John 9:18-23

- No doubt these parents had prayed for their son to be healed, but now they refuse to support him. Why?
- Being kicked out of the temple meant being ostracized. They would lose their jobs, their standing in society; they could not buy or sell products.
- I wonder how the blind man felt when his parents didn't support him. I saw that. Parents who want their children saved, but not too much. Not preaching or being a missionary or marrying a minister.

Two miracles happened in John 9 - physical healing and spiritual healing.
- This man is not yet saved, but he is ripe for harvest.
- Note John 9:35-41
-John 9:35 "Do you believe in the Son of Man?"
• This is the all-important question! A person's eternal destiny depends on the answer to this question.
• Note that the question is personal... do you think so?

- Jesus is about to turn on the spiritual light so he can see John 9:36-38
- "Lord, I believe"... At salvation, this man confesses Jesus as Lord... and the second miracle occurs.
- The word "Lord" is used in the N.T. Used 747 times in relation to Jesus. The word "savior" is used 24 times.

-In Acts, “Lord” is used 92 times; Savior only 2 times

Lord is who He is; Savior is what He does.

-Rom. 10:9-10, 13
Here's what this man learned: Salvation is an inside job!

did you learn that

Jesus: The Gateway to Glory
Johannes 10:1-10

John 10 is a valuable chapter in the Word of God. Jesus reveals so much about His heart and mission in the 42 verses of this magnificent passage.
- It should be noted that John 10:1-8 addresses the Jew and focuses primarily on the lost sheep of Israel. However, John 10:9 declares the glorious truth that Jesus is not only the door for the lost sheep of Israel, but for the lost sheep of the whole world. Jesus opens wide the door of salvation and makes a far-reaching promise to all who enter into a relationship with Him. Jesus promises some very special blessings to those who do.

When we come to John 10, Jesus uses a new illustration. He speaks of a sheep pen; actually two sheepfolds.

He also continues to condemn the Pharisees. In John 9 he calls them false teachers. At the beginning of John 10 Jesus adds that the Pharisees are also thieves, robbers and strangers.

*Thieves – John 10:1

The word "thief" is the word "klephts" from which we get our word "kleptomaniac". It refers to a sneak thief who uses deception to get at the sheep. He steals insidiously.

*Robber – John 10:1 One who steals, using strength and violence.

*Strangers – John 10:5 Strangers don't know or care about the sheep, only about themselves. He also calls them “mercenaries” who don't love the sheep but want to fleece the sheep; don't lead the sheep.

Then John 10 focuses on the image of sheep, folds, and shepherds. Why the shepherd and the sheep?
-Because a "shepherd" in Jewish thought was any type of leader, spiritual or political.
• The people viewed the king and the prophets as shepherds.
• Israel had the privilege of being "the flock of the Lord." (Psalms 100:3)

In these verses, Jesus depicts two types of sheepfolds or sheepfolds.

(1)A communal sheepfold—John 10:1-6

Because shepherds were with their sheep 24 hours a day, they sometimes needed a break. They would lead their sheep to the community sheep pen. The community's sheepfold consisted of great stone walls ten to twelve feet high, and thorn bushes grew to the top of the walls. There was only one opening or door in the wall for the sheep to go in and out of. A porter was hired to be the door of the sheepfold. He would actually lie in the doorway so nothing could go in or out of the sheepfold without going over him. He checked that the shepherds were who they said they were when they came to get their sheep.
-Sometimes there were three, five or ten herds in a large communal pen.

The sheep were not branded and there were no computer systems, so how did the shepherd separate his sheep from the others when the time came? By his voice! The sheep would only follow the voice of their shepherd.

(2) A sheepfold in the country or on a hillside—John 10:7-9

A shepherd would form a circle of stones, one on top of the other on the slope. Again the shepherd would lie down in the one narrow opening and become a living door! Nothing could enter unless it went through him. His own body became the "gate" or "door". This is exactly what Jesus wanted to convey, that his body would be the entrance to eternal life.

The door is a person! Jesus says he is that person; this door. No one comes into God's fold without going through Him. Salvation comes only through faith in Jesus!
- All other attempts to get into the herd show that they are thieves and robbers.

I. Jesus is the door of acceptance—John 10:7, 9

Jesus makes it clear that NOT all roads lead to heaven! It has become politically correct to hold on to the notion that many religions are right and good, and that even sincere followers of those religions will be saved.
-Jesus smashes any such notion. There can only be ONE gate to the sheepfold, and Christ Himself is that gate.

A. Jesus is the exclusive door

A building without a door would be a vault sealed by death.
-A divine plan without a door would be meaningless, unattainable, useless. Christ became the means by which the far off could be made near.
- When I say that Jesus is the exclusive door, I mean that he is the ONLY door. You say, "Preacher, that's mighty tight!" You got it! There was only one door in Noah's ark; there was but one door in the tabernacle in the wilderness; and there is only one way up, and that is through Jesus.
-Apostelgeschichte 4:12

B. Jesus is the inclusive door

Jesus is the ONLY door, but He is the OPEN door! There is only one door, but anyone can enter and be saved.
-What a blessing! Did you know your name is in the Bible? Well, I've never found Lowell or Bob or Sue or Sherry in the Bible, but I've found something better: Whoever Wants.
-What a blessing to be included; be accepted!

I am so happy in Christ today that I go my way singing;
Yes, I'm so glad to know that and I say: Jesus locked me in too!

Jesus locked me in, yes he locked me in. When the Lord said, "Whoever," He included me too!

C. Jesus is the door of exclusion

An open door invites, but a closed door, and especially a locked door, is something to be afraid of.
- A closed door means separation. There's a big difference between being inside and outside with the door closed.
-It is impossible to be on both sides of the door at the same time. Some are INCLUDED; others CLOSE!

One door and only one, and yet the sides are two; I'm on the inside, which side are you on?

The time must come when the door closes. “After that the other virgins also came and said: Lord, Lord, open to us! But he answered and said, "Truly I say to you, I do not know you."

D. Jesus is the front door

Doors are there to be used, and when that is done, a person goes from one place to another.
-If you don't use the door, the door is useless to you. You have to do more than just look at the door or examine the door. You must enter and go through the door!
- It is not difficult to enter through a door! Nothing complicated! Just make the decision to go ahead and do it!

E. Jesus is the door of protection

In the door there is warmth, security, refuge and protection. The question is, "Have you entered salvation through the one and only door?" Entering means you are saved, safe, and content.

II. Jesus is the door to adventure - John 10:9c

The phrase "and will go in and out and find pasture" implies freedom and adventure.
- Nothing is boring in the Christian life. Every day there is something new to discover about our shepherd.
-Our wonderful shepherd feeds us, guides us, provides for us, protects us and persecutes us!

Listen to some songwriters:

1. He guides me! O blessed! O words of heavenly comfort!
Whatever I do, wherever I am, it's still God's hand to guide me!

3.Lord, I would take your hand in mine, never grumble nor complain,
happy whatever lot I see, for your hand guides me!

He guides me, He guides me, By his own hand He guides me:
I would like to be his faithful successor, because he guides me through his hand.

When we walk with the Lord, in the light of his word
What glory he sheds on our way

While we do his good will, he still abides with us
And with all who trust and obey.

Then we shall sit at His feet in sweet fellowship
Or we walk by his side on the path
What he says we will do, where he sends us we will go
Never fear, just trust and obey.

Moment by moment I'm held in His love;
moment by moment I have life from above;
Look to Jesus until the glory shines;
Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Yours.

III. Jesus is the door to fullness - John 10:10

What is Abundant Life? It's not necessarily a long life, or a life free from disease and suffering, or a life where everything is just wonderful or beautiful. Nor is it an abundance of things.

Abundant life is green pastures, still waters that pursue us when we stray, discernment of what is good for us to keep us sane, safe and most importantly in the presence of our Shepherd.

How do you qualify for Abundant Life? Do we have to be brilliant, beautiful or benevolent?
-No, we just have to follow our shepherd who knows what is best for his sheep.

Have you entered through the door of salvation?

The Heavenly Shepherd
Johannes 10:11, 14-15, 17-18, 27-30

Nothing describes the relationship between Christ and his people like the relationship between the shepherd and his sheep.
- Throughout the Word of God you will find this beautiful analogy of our Lord as our Heavenly Shepherd.
Psalm 23:1; P.S. 100:3; Isaiah 40:11

When God raises up a great preaching evangelist, He seems to raise up a great singing evangelist to minister by their side. He did this with John and Charles Wesley. He did this with Billy Graham and George Beverly Shea. Between these two great evangelistic teams was D.L. Moody and Ira Sankey.
-1874 while D.L. Moody and Ira Sankey were at a train station in Glasgow, Scotland, Sankey picked up a Glasgow newspaper and found a poem written by a young lady who wanted her brother saved. Sankey cut out the poem for his musical scrapbook. At the midday meeting on the second day of the meeting, Mr. Moody preached on "The Good Shepherd." Afterwards, Mr. Moody asked Sankey if he had a theme-related solo to end the service with. Sankey lifted his heart in prayer to God for help, placed the little piece of newspaper on the organ and began singing the hymn note by note to the melody to which it is still sung today. After Sankey died, George Beverly Shea sang it in Billy Graham's Crusades:

There were ninety-nine that lay safe
In the shelter of the fold;
But one was out on the hills
Far from the gates of gold -
Way to the mountains, wild and bare,
Away from the care of the tender shepherd.

"Lord, you have your ninety-nine here,
Aren't they enough for you?"
But the shepherd replied, "This from me
has moved away from Me;
And although the road is bumpy and steep
I go into the desert to find my sheep.”

But none of those who were ransomed ever found out about it
How deep were the waters crossed,
Also how dark was the night through which the Lord walked,
Before he found his lost sheep.
Out in the desert he heard her cry
Sick and helpless and ready to die.

"Lord, where are these drops of blood all the way,
That marks the trail of the mountain?”
"They were shed for a stray,
Before the shepherd could bring him back.”

"Lord, where are your hands so torn and torn?"
"You will be pierced by many thorns tonight."

But through the mountains torn by thunder
And up from the rocky steep incline,
There was a cry at the gate of heaven,
"Cheer! I have found My Sheep!"
And the angels resounded around the throne,
"Rejoice, for the Lord is bringing back His own!"

Jesus said, "I am the good shepherd"; Not "I was the Good Shepherd" or "I will be the Good Shepherd". He IS our present Good Shepherd.
• Nor does he say: “I am a good shepherd”, but THE good shepherd.
• “Good” in the sense of morally good. The word also means “beautiful, endearing, lovable, attractive. Real and true as opposed to false and artificial.”
• He is true to his responsibilities; hardworking and patient. Everything you would want in a shepherd; you find in Jesus. He is loyal, tender and thoughtful.

I. The good shepherd loves his folds of sheep

Note the contrast to the bad or false shepherd - John 10:12-13

A. He saves his sheep - John 10:9-11

He saves us by redeeming us with His precious blood. 1 Peter 1:18-19
- There is not a single sheep of all his flock except what he can see the mark of his blood on him. Upon the heart and soul of every saint the Savior sees His sweat of blood at Gethsemane and His torments at Calvary.
- "You do not belong to you, because you were bought with a price."
-Our names are written in His Book.

They are Christ's sheep because he redeemed them and because his Father gave them to him. They are a gift of love from the father to his beloved son. He often speaks of his sheep like this:
● "As many as you gave me"
● "You gave me"
● “Yours they were and you gave them to me; and what you gave me I have kept.”

B. He knows his sheep—John 10:14, 27

(Video) Mom Installs Camera, Sees Why She’s Always Tired

What a consolation! We belong to Him personally; through a personal relationship with Him.
- He remembers when and where each of us was as his sheep as we trusted him and gave him the title deed for our hearts and souls.
-In fact, no one knows us better than our Heavenly Shepherd; and He still loves us. He knows every strength and weakness. He knows our every joy and every burden. He knows our faults, our shortcomings, our faithfulness or unfaithfulness, our service to Him or our lack of it, and He still loves us!

Note the contrast in matte. 7:23 "I never knew you."

C. He takes care of his sheepfolds

Psalm 23 points to his provision and protection for his sheep. And He is always on duty!
-Psalm 121:1-8

D. He keeps his sheep forever—John 10:27-30

Sheep are weak, stupid and need someone to take care of them. They often wander from the herd and have an incredible knack for getting dirty. Dirt sticks to the wool.
- Sheepskin is full of an oil called lanolin, which penetrates the skin and coats the wool. Every time a sheep lies down, grass, dirt, burrs and everything imaginable sticks to its fur. Sheep are giant, walking Velcro straps.
-Sheep stay dirty until someone cleans them. That's how it is with us. We cannot purify our own souls, but God can.

There is a difference between eternal life and everlasting life. Eternal life refers to duration; immortal existence. Eternal life refers to quality of life; to be raised to high places to partake of the life of God.
II. The good shepherd leads his sheepfolds

sheep are stupid You have no sense of direction. You have no defenses. Someone said that the only reason God made sheep is so he can show his children what they are like.

The shepherd would often pluck a ripe fruit from a tree and lead the sheep with the fruit. He guides us as he feeds us. So does our heavenly Shepherd as we feed on His Word.

Our Lord marked His sheep with two marks: one on their ears and the other on their feet
● On their ears: “My sheep hear my voice”
It was Mary who said, "Whatever He tells you, do it!"
● On their feet: "And they follow me"

The best defense for sheep is to stay close to the Shepherd and to the Lord. The same goes for us, doesn't it?
-When we have no fellowship with God and are isolated from other Christians, we are most vulnerable. We need the Shepherd's wisdom and strength to survive, and the comfort and encouragement of our brothers and sisters in Christ.

III. The good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep
Johannes 10:11, 15, 17-18

Four times Jesus says that he lays down his life for his sheep.
- In contrast, the mercenary runs in the face of danger. The Good Shepherd clings to His sheep, defends His sheep, will die for His sheep.
-Why? Because he loves his sheep - John 15:13

A young man came home on a ship after World War II. His mother went to meet him. He was in a wheelchair. His mother said, "Son, get up and greet me. It's your mother.” He said, “I can't stand. I have no legs.” She bent down and said, “Now, son, put your arms around me.” He said, “I can't. I have no arms.” The mother began to cry and said, “What a price you had to pay. You've lost your legs and your arms.” The young man straightened to his full height and said, “No! I haven't lost my legs or my arms. I GAVE them on behalf of my country.”

Jesus gave everything for you and me!

The sheep and the shepherd
Johannes 10:27-30

What happens when a Christian sins?
● Can you lose your salvation if you sin? Or are there certain sins that if you are saved and commit them, you lose your salvation?
● This is an important question because we all sin whether we are saved or not.

God has made some great promises to His people and one of those promises is that once you are saved you are saved forever...You cannot lose your salvation...You are safe and secure in the Lord Jesus.
Let me give you some verses that will help seal this truth for you:
• *Romans 11:29 Salvation is a gift from God and God's gifts are irrevocable...He never withdraws His gifts once given...He does not change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace. God is not an Indian giver!
• I Cor. 1:8-9 God is faithful...dependable, trustworthy...and believers are assured of God's grace in their lives to keep them saved until the day Jesus catches up with us in the rapture.
• Phil. 1:6
• Judas 24
• 1. Petrus 1:3-5
• Hebrews 10:14 In other words, once you're truly saved, you're always saved.

If you have ever watched a carpenter at rough construction work, you may have seen something that illustrates what the Lord was doing as he spoke these words to his disciples. Sometimes a carpenter drives a long nail through a board so that part of the nail sticks out at the back. Then he will bang the tip of the nail sideways and embed it into the wood. This is called clinching the nail. It makes the joint a bit tighter as the nail can't work its way out of this position.
– In a way, that's what Jesus did in these verses. He was so interested in getting the teaching stuck in the minds of his disciples that he drove in not just one nail, but two, and held them both.
-That's what I mean. First he says, "I will give them eternal life."
● This alone makes the truth quick; for eternal life is a life that can never be lost. If it could be lost in a year... or five years... or ten years, it would not be eternal life. It would be a one year life...or a five year life...or a ten year wouldn't be eternal life.
● Jesus knew that there would be many who would find this difficult to accept and who would try to explain it away, perhaps saying that eternal life was a quality of life rather than a life of infinity.
● So He kept hitting the nail sideways, clasping it and saying, "They will never perish"...this is the clasp by which the Teaching is strengthened and solidified.
- A nail, no matter how well fastened, does not always make a good connection. So Jesus proceeded to drive in and crack a second nail. The second nail is found in the phrase, "No one can snatch them from my father's hand."
-Jesus says that we are safe in His hands, but then, lest we think that's not enough, Jesus adds that the Father's hand is over His hand, so that we are enclosed in two hands. We are doubly sure!

-If that's not enough, the father and son still have two hands to defend us!

Some say, "Well, this doctrine should never be taught, even if it's true. It's a dangerous doctrine. If people are taught this doctrine and believe this doctrine, they would go out and sin as much as they want as once they are saved they could never be lost.”
● Well, I sin whatever I want. In fact, I sin more than I want to. That's exactly the point... I don't want to sin.
● I doubt anyone with those thoughts and attitudes has ever been saved.
● Two things will keep us from sinning even though we know this truth: His love and grace for us and out of gratitude for this great truth we should love him more and try harder to live a godly life as we should .. Secondly, the fear of the Lord and his judgment should make us want to live righteously.

I want you to see two things in these verses:

I. The Shepherd's Sheep John 10:27

There are three qualities that all of our Lord's sheep have in common. I invite you to test yourself on these three characteristics:

A. The attention of the sheep to that of the shepherd
- "My sheep hear my voice" True sheep have turned their hearts to the voice of Christ.
- There is a focus on God's Word, whether private reading of the Bible or public preaching of the message. In his heart he wants to know: "What does God want to say to me?"

B. The shepherd's approval of the sheep
- "And I know them" Because Christ is omniscient, He knows everything about everyone, but here He is speaking of knowing us in a personal, intimate relationship.
-He knows our love for Him...our desire to be like much we want to live to please much commitment and devotion we have to Him...your thoughts, motives, Injuries, heartbreak.
-He gives this warning to those who have never trusted Him...on the Day of Judgment He will say to them, "I never knew you." Matt. 7:23

C. The faithfulness of the sheep to the shepherd
- "And they follow me" It is not enough to hear the voice of Christ. Real sheep follow him... they obey him.
- He asks: "Why do you call me Lord, Lord and not do what I say?"
- Sheep are not branded like cattle, but the Puritans always say: “The Lord's sheep have two marks, one on the ear (hear his voice) and one on the foot (they follow me).

II. The Shepherd John 10:28-29

A. The shepherd's provision for his sheep
- "And I will give them everlasting life" Eternal life is His precious gift of forgiveness and grace in this world and a life of glory in the world to come.
- No one but God could say: "I give them eternal life."

-When will we get eternal life? When we die...that's where it begins...NO!! He didn't say, "I will give them eternal life." He said, "I will give them eternal life."
-Johannes 5:24

B. The shepherd's protection for his sheep
- "And they will never perish" The Greek contains a double negative and reads literally: "And they will not, not forever perish"... "They will definitely not perish, never!"
- If we fall back into sin, we cannot lose our salvation, but we can lose our joy, our heavenly rewards, our peace, and our blessings from God. But real sheep cannot lose their salvation. "You will never perish!"
-Rom. 8:35-39
- The best thing we can do is stay close to our Shepherd.

There is a place of still rest...near the heart of God.
A place where sin cannot harass...close to the heart of God.
There is a place of sweet comfort...near the heart of God.
A place where we, our Savior, meet...close to the heart of God.
There is a place of complete liberation...near the heart of God.
A place where all is joy and peace...close to the heart of God.
O Jesus, blessed Redeemer...sent from the heart of God.
Hold us who wait before you... close to the heart of God.

C. The shepherd's promise to his sheep
- "And no one shall snatch them from my hand." Several times in Scripture, God's people are presented as being in His hands:
-Is a. 49:2; 51:16
-Psalm 95:7
-Is a. 49:15-16 "Your walls (paths) are constantly before me."
"I have an image of you indelibly engraved (tattooed) on each of my palms" (AMP)
- When we come to Christ by faith, He makes us a part of His body (Eph. 1:22-23).
When he takes us in his hands, we become fingers! If we could lose our salvation, it would be tantamount to Jesus losing a finger from His body. I can't see Christ in heaven with a garbled frame.

-What do we know about the hands of our Lord?
(1) They are creative hands
He made us, which means he knows us because he made us.
(2) They are caring hands
- Hosea 11 says that like a father teaching his child to walk, he takes our hands, supports us while we learn, and catches us when we are about to fall.
-His hands are always stretched out to us.
(3) His hands are chastisement hands Heb.10:30-31

-We are not only in God's grace, but also in His grasp! Perfect security!
-Note: It is not our hand that holds on to God; it is God's hand that holds us.
-If you want to lose your child in a crowd, ask them to hold you. But if you want to keep him from getting lost, put your own hand around his.

-People who are uncertain of their salvation have the wrong idea that everything depends on them. It doesn't. It is the work of Christ from beginning to end. He's holding on to us.
-Why does our shepherd hold us so tightly in his hand? For the reason He saved us in the first place. Because he loves us!

-Hint: "And no one shall snatch them from my hand". This implies that many will try to tear Christians away from Christ and draw them back into sin.
- The world, the flesh and the devil are always pulling and tearing, trying to put distance between us and our Lord.
- Don't miss the beautiful image of God's Great Grip.
- The security of a Christian depends entirely on the strength of the hand of God. We are in the hands of the Lord Jesus. But there is a double grip... We are also in the hands of the Father. Plus, both son and dad have one hand free to fend off any enemy!

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of divine glory!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.
This is my story, this is my song, praising my Redeemer all day long.
This is my story, this is my song, praising my Redeemer all day long.

Can one go to heaven and not believe in the eternal security of the believer?
-Yes, but the journey won't be nearly as pleasant.
- They had extremely cold weather up in the Great Lake area. A man walking through this area came across a frozen lake. He began to wonder if the ice was thick enough to hold him as he walked across the frozen lake. He moved very slowly and listened for a cracking sound. About halfway he got on his hands and knees and crawled, afraid the ice might break. Then he suddenly heard a loud noise behind him. It was two horses pulling a wagon full of people coming across the frozen lake. Everyone in the car was laughing and singing and enjoying themselves. After they got past him and safely on the other side, the man said, "How stupid of me to be scared. Instead of crossing the lake in fear, I could have crossed it in joy and peace.”

God's honor is at stake in this matter of eternal security. If he lost one, he would be breaking his covenant promise to us. He will never do that.

The secret is to make sure you're one of His sheep!

The eternal security of the believer
Johannes 10:27-30

May I ask you a question? Is there anything better than being saved: being born again?
-Well, there is! The thing that's better than being saved is being saved AND KNOWING IT AND KNOWING THAT YOU CAN NEVER LOSE YOUR SALVATION!

Our Lord did not hesitate to preach the deeper teachings of the gospel.
- A few times in the Gospels, after Jesus had preached, someone said, “That's a harsh statement. Who can know or who can understand?”

To be a productive Christian you must know that your eternal future is absolutely secure. Unless we are absolutely certain of our safety in the Lord Jesus, we would always worry about our future. This kind of fear and doubt would cripple us spiritually and prevent us from reaching our full potential as believers because we would never be able to focus on the task at hand.

Let me be very clear about what the Bible means when it presents the doctrine of the believer's eternal security.
-The Bible refers to true believers; those who have had a personal experience of grace and been washed in the blood of the Lamb.
-You will never perish. You will never be lost. They will never be thrown away. Once in Christ, they will always be in Christ. Once made children of God by adoption and grace, they will never cease to be His children and become the devil's children. Once pardoned and forgiven, their pardon will never be taken away from them. Once connected to Christ by living faith, their connection will never be broken.

Although true believers will be eternally safe, there are some things that are NOT meant:

1. Just because someone is eternally safe doesn't mean they will never fall into sin.

A saved person falls sadly and shamefully into sin. There is biblical evidence for this. Noah once fell drunk. Abraham lied twice and said Sarah was his sister. Jacob betrayed his father Isaac. David committed adultery. Peter denied his Lord three times.

2. Just because someone is eternally secure doesn't mean they will never have doubts and fears about their eternal security.

Many believers see how weak they are and how far they are from being holy men of God, until they doubt the reality of their own grace and fear that they will never reach heaven. BEING SAFE is one thing; FEEL SECURE AND SECURE is something else entirely. There are many true believers who never enjoy the full assurance of hope throughout their lives. Full assurance of hope is not necessary for salvation. Some of God's True Children do not enjoy a sense of absolute security because of their ignorance or lack of teaching or understanding of God's Word.
-Jesus never said that you have to be born again and again and again. You will search in vain for an example in the Bible where anyone has ever been saved twice. Hebrews 6:4-6
-God's honor is at stake. If He lost ONE soul redeemed by the blood of Jesus, God would lose His honor and cease to be God!

Why is it important to understand that TRUE believers are eternally safe?
- What if a child didn't know from day to day whether they belonged to their family or not? What if he thought that the day he was good he was in the family but the day he was bad he was out of the family? One day his father loved him, the next day he didn't. I'm telling you, this kid would be an emotional and psychological wreck. The fact is that regardless of your behavior, you will always be a member of your family and there is nothing you or they can do about it. Why this? Because you are born into the family and that can never be changed. That's how it is with God's family. You see, when you are in Jesus, you are a part of God's family and He wants you to experience all of the peace and security that all of His children enjoy.

What about those who seem saved for a while and now have no interest in spiritual things? They used to go to church, they might have been baptized, they might have made a public profession of faith, they might have looked like Christians and did all the things that Christians do, but now they're in the world. We've all experienced that. What's up with them?
● Jesus spoke of such people - Matthew 7:21-23
● John says they were never really saved. They haven't lost their salvation, they just never had it to begin with. The reason they fell away and stayed away is because they were never saved to begin with. 1 John 2:19

If you are truly saved, let me give you several reasons why you are saved forever.

I. Because of God's promise - John 10:27-29

God's promises are guarantees - Romans 4:21; Titus 1:2
-If you believe the Bible, you can believe in eternal security
. Johannes 6:39; Römer 8:38-39

II. Because of God's persistence (not mine, his) Phil. 1:6

Who started the work? God! Who will complete the work? God! He convinced us and then helped us to accept Christ by giving us the faith to trust Him. God will finish what he started.

III. Because of God's predestination - Rom. 8:29-30

Those who accept Christ are predestined to go to heaven and be just like Jesus. It is impossible to be saved and then lost again, for that would destroy Almighty God's preordained plan. He already sees his redeemed in heaven.

IV. Because God made us perfect - Hebr. 10:14

Jesus made us perfect through his sacrifice. We are not perfect in our flesh; only our soul. When I step out of line, I am disciplined by the Lord, but I am still considered perfect by the Father.
-Rome. 4:5-8; I Kor. 6:9-11. God has imputed the righteousness of the Lord Jesus to us, and we are declared perfect because of His righteousness.

V. Because of our position in Christ - 2 Cor. 5:17

The only way a believer can lose his relationship with the father is for the son to do it first. That is utter impossibility.

VI. Because of our possessions - John 5:24

We were given eternal life when we were saved. Not "ten years of life"; not "until I sin life". We have eternal life now, not at death! It is the present, eternal possession of every child of God.

VII. Because of Christ's prayer - John 17:15, 20, 24

Jesus never prayed a prayer that was not answered in the affirmative because he was always praying in the Father's will. He prayed for our protection and for our going home. You can rest assured that you are secure in the love of Christ.

VIII. Because of God's power - 1 Peter 1:3-5

God's power is greater than any other and it is His power that keeps us saved! If Satan could take one believer out of the hand of God, he would have them all. That would mean that when someone goes to heaven, they would go by the grace of Satan. Satan knows no mercy.

are you a believer If so, then rejoice, for you are eternally secure in Christ! Stop allowing Satan to push you around. You are a child of God and you will go to heaven.

If you are lost, come to Jesus and be saved. Don't let your fears or your sins take you to hell.

Lazarus, come out!
Johannes 11:1-7, 11-15, 17-45

John reports in his gospel of seven miracles. The first miracle of signs happened at a wedding; the latter took place at a funeral. The first sign miracle was in a place of joy; the last in a place of sadness.

In this final miracle of signs, Jesus proclaims another of his "I am" statements. Like all of the "I am" claims of Christ in John, this grand "I am" statement points us to the sufficiency of Christ.
- In this declaration “I am the resurrection and the life” he reminded Mary and Martha that in the face of death and in their hour of sorrow and sorrow he was all they needed.

Here in John 11 one of our Lord's dearest friends has died.

Someone rightly said that man is the only creature who knows he is going to die and he is trying desperately to forget it.
- Mention death and people will try to change the subject.
-When Hardly Denham was pastor of FBC Newton, MS, he was told by one of the leaders of the church never to preach on the subject of death. He said, "I wish I never had to preach about death or dying, but as long as people are dying I have to."
-Death and dying are not pleasant subjects, but unless Jesus returns in our lifetime, every human being will experience death.
- Heb. 9:27
A little boy saw a well-known televangelist in a hospital. He said to the preacher, "I saw you on TV and heard you talk about heaven and hell and eternity. Tell me how far away is heaven? How far away is hell? How far away is eternity?” The wise preacher said, “Son, put your hand on your heart. What are you feeling?" The boy said, "I feel a heartbeat." The preacher said, "That's it, son. How far away is heaven? How far away is hell? How far away is eternity? Only a heartbeat.”

Let me introduce you to this little family from Bethany. It was a family and home that the Lord Jesus loved to visit. It was the kind of home where he could relax and escape the pressures of life. He needed a place where he could laugh and enjoy good fellowship and good food.
-Three times John refers to the love between Jesus and this little family (John 11:3,5,36)
-Martha was the eldest sister and a bit opinionated. She enjoyed serving the Lord. She was the chief cook in the family and she enjoyed cooking those special meals for the Lord.
-Mary spent much of her time at Jesus' feet, learning from him, fellowshipping with him and worshiping him.
- Lazarus was a quiet guy. There is no recorded word he ever spoke. He just had a quiet charm about him.

But although he loved Jesus and was loved by Jesus and Jesus was near and dear, that did not protect him from suffering and heartache. Nor will we be protected from suffering and sorrow.

Lazarus was terminally ill and the sisters sent a message to Jesus.


I. Despair - John 11:1-3

Bad things happen to those who love Jesus and to those whom Jesus loves.
- Do you think that Jesus doesn't love you or your family because something bad happened to you? Perhaps that is why this passage repeats over and over again that every member of this family was loved by Jesus.
- John 11:3 “Lord, he whom you love is sick.” This is not an invitation or request for the Lord to come to your home. They didn't say, "Lord, please come." They just assumed that as soon as the Lord found out about the situation, he would rush to their home and heal Lazarus.

But look at John 11:4. On a human level, Jesus doesn't seem to care, otherwise he would have come right away!

II. The Delay

It may help you to know that our Lord's crucifixion was only a month away at that point.

So why did Jesus hesitate? Was it indifference? Was it because he didn't care? Was it because he was busy? Was it because Jesus had something more important to do?

Look again at John 11:4. I'm sure they were looking for Jesus; wondered why he wasn't there. They were confused. But if they had heard our Lord's answer in John 11:4, they would have been even more confused.

Our Lord's delays are always purposeful. Love always has a purpose. Therefore, we are always right to seek the reasons for our Lord's delays.
(1) Jesus hesitated, knowing that Lazarus was already dead.
(2) Jesus hesitated because he intended to raise Lazarus from the grave. Most Jews believed that a person's spirit lingered near the corpse for three days. Jesus waited four days to give absolute assurance that His resurrection of Lazarus was by His power.
(3) Jesus delayed God's glorification by the miracle. Could he have healed Lazarus from afar?” Of course. But everything he did, he did for the glory of God.
(4) Jesus delayed because raising Lazarus after he had been dead four days would inspire others to believe in him.

If Jesus knew that Lazarus was already dead, what did he mean at John 11:4 when he said, "This sickness does not lead to death."
• By the way, this could be the motto printed and posted on the hospital wall of every Christian who ever faces a terminal illness.
• Here is what Jesus said about his friend Lazarus, who was already dead: “His sickness INCLUDES death, but it did NOT end in death!” Death is a phrase; no finality. It's temporary; not final. The second sentence reads: "This death is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it."

Note John 11:7-10 "Go back to Judea." It almost sounds suicidal! "Lord, they just tried to kill you there."

- Note John 11:9-10 In other words, Jesus said, "I have a small window of opportunity to do my remaining work before night falls on my earthly work."

Note John 11:11-17 This is also the second phase that tells us that death is not final. Dying is falling asleep in Jesus. This is N.T. language. This is the language of Jesus.
● When a ruler named Jairus came to Jesus to ask him to come and touch his 12-year-old daughter who was dying, the little girl died before Jesus got home. When Jesus arrived and heard the loud weeping, He sent people out of her room and said, "She is not dead but sleeping." The people laughed at Jesus, but He took her by the hand and lifted her up.
● In Acts 7:59-60 we read that Stephen, the first man to be martyred for his faith in Christ, “fell asleep” at his death.
● Acts 13:36 David "slept."
● In I Thess. 4, Paul speaks of those "who have fallen asleep in him".

Sleep is harmless and temporary. It speaks of rest, relief and getting up again.
- Our word cemetery comes from the Greek word meaning "sleeping places" or "sleeping chambers".
- The word “resurrection” means “to rise up”. After death we will rise again.

III. Die Demonstration – Johannes 11:20-27, 32

Both Martha and Mary meet the Lord and offer both praise and protest.
- Both focus on what could have been: "If only"

Does the “if only” ghost haunt your past? “If only I hadn't said that; if only I hadn't done that; if only I had taken him seriously; if only I had prayed for it.”

Notice John 11:33-38. Notice the genuine concern of our Lord.

The poet put it this way:
Does Jesus care if I say goodbye?
To the loved ones on earth for me,
And my sad heart aches until it almost breaks
Is it for him? does he see me

Oh yes, He cares - I know He cares!
His heart is touched by my sorrow;
When the days are weary, the long nights weary,
I know my savior cares.

IV. The Directions - John 11:39-45

Jesus asked for the stone to be taken away. Some believed that Jesus wanted to see Lazarus again. Martha says it's better to remember him as he was because it's been four days and the decomposition has started. In the meantime he has started to stink!

Can you imagine these people around the grave? Now it's quiet!

The crying has stopped now. All eyes are on Jesus; then to the sisters.

Jesus prays to his father and asks him to do his request and glorify himself and glorify himself and that others believe in him.
- With a loud voice Jesus says: “Lazarus, come out.” All eyes were on the opening of this tomb. Suddenly Lazarus gets up, comes out of the tomb wrapped in shrouds. What do you think was going through the minds of those standing there?
-Jesus says, “Release him, remove the shrouds and let him go.” How would you have liked to have been the one to unwrap him?
- How do you think Lazarus felt? What was on his mind? Remember, he was in paradise and now he's back here on earth. Think of the sights he told you about!

It is interesting that Jesus put two truths together. He said, "I am the resurrection and the life." Lazarus needed both a resurrection and an afterlife. Jesus said, "I am the resurrection." That would raise Lazarus up! Then Jesus added, "And life." That would keep him awake.

You know that this was less of a resurrection and more of a revival, for Lazarus died again. The Risen One will never die again.

What happened to Lazarus? John 12:1-2 He went from the grave to the table.

Then the religious people wanted to kill him again of all people. John 12:9-11

Have you ever wondered what death will be like?

Peter Marshall told the story of a lady who was in his church. This lady had a boy who was terminally ill and was going to die in the near future. She served him as best she could, but she watched him week after week and day after day and soon saw that her son, whom she loved so dearly, was getting weaker and weaker, and she knew that the time would come soon. One night as she was sitting with her son he was quieter than usual and she knew something was on his mind so she said, "Son, what's the matter?" He looked his mother in the eyes and said, " Mother, what will it be like to die? Will it hurt?" For a moment she said she couldn't speak. Then it was as if God had given her a revelation and she began to share that thought with her son. She said, "Listen Times when you come back from gaming and you've played all day and you fall on the couch and go to sleep. Remember those times." She said, "You know you don't belong there, that's not your bed, and you you're not properly dressed but you sleep there and then you wake up in the morning and lo and behold you're in your own bed and you're wearing your own pajamas and you're in your own room, right where you're supposed to be! This is because someone loves you and cares for you and your father's big strong arms lifted you up and put you in your bed and made you the way you should be." She said, "Son, that's how death becomes One day you'll go to sleep and wake up in the other room - your own room - the place you're supposed to be. And it will be because someone loves you and cares about you and the strong arms of God got you there.

The tears of Jesus
Johannes 11:32-36

Jesus wept!

speak tears! I know lips and tongues speak, but tears speak.
-Tears say a lot. You have your own language. They speak of joy, of pain, of celebration, of pain.
- "Tears are liquid emotions squeezed from the heart."

Tears are everywhere in the Bible:
● Abraham wept when Sarah his wife died.
● David and his best friend Jonathan cried together.
● Jeremiah is known as the weeping prophet.
● Peter wept because he had failed his Lord.
● Paul wept because of the burden he was carrying for the lost.

But... Jesus wept, and when the Son of God weeps, it should get our attention.

We live in a strange world and are given false information when we are told:
● Big boys don't cry. Tough guys and strong people don't cry. NO?
● I've heard people say, "Crying is a sign of weakness or lack of faith."
● I've heard people say, “Don't cry. You have to persevere for the others; maybe for children or for the other family members. Do not Cry!"

But here we see God in tears! Why would Jesus cry?

I. The reason for our Lord's tears

Three times we are told that Jesus wept and for three different reasons:

A. Jesus wept over sorrows - John 11:33-35

Lazarus was one of our Lord's closest and dearest friends. Jesus enjoyed the relationship he had with Lazarus. He loved being in his home. It was a place where he could relax, escape the pressures of life, eat well, and talk about pleasant and spiritual things. No one was playing airs there. Jesus just enjoyed being with these people.
-But Lazarus had died. A great storm of emotions stirred the heart and mind of Jesus. And he cried.
- The tears of Mary and Martha touched our Lord's heart and when he saw them crying, he could not help but weep with them.

Tears streamed down his holy cheeks. Those who stood by said, "See how he loved him."
-When Jesus called Lazarus from the dead, his face was still wet and stained with tears. He is our compassionate friend and brother.

Notice John 11:35 again. Whoever the N.T. in verse seemed to stop
Be amazed at the text, make a whole verse out of two words. This is the shortest verse, however
that of the deepest.
Add a word to the verse and it would be out of place. In fact, the verse should be capitalized, JESUS ​​WEPT!

B. Jesus wept over sin (not his, but the sins of others) Luke 19:41

It was Palm Sunday. The crowd wanted to shout "Hosanna," but Jesus knew that in a few days, many in that crowd would be shouting, "Crucify him!"
-Jesus wept over them because their eyes were blind and they fell into sin and their eternal ruin.

When General William Booth was the head of the Salvation Army, one of their missionaries wrote back from England and wanted to come home. He said, "Gen. Booth, I've tried everything." General Boothe sent back this two-word reply: "Try tears!"
-Ps. 126:5-6

C. Jesus wept over his suffering - Heb. 5:7-9

On the night of our Lord's arrest, He wept.
- In a dream, a man saw Christ being scourged. When the tormentor waved the whip through the air and smashed the victim's back with its small, sharp pieces of metal, the man could not stand it any longer. He ran forward and yelled, "Stop!" But when he reached the tormentor and, to his horror, looked into his face, he saw himself.

When Jesus came to Calvary, they hung him on a tree.
They drove great nails through His hands and feet and made a Calvary. They crowned him with a crown of thorns, his wounds were red and deep.
For those were raw and cruel days, and human flesh was cheap.

When Jesus came to our town, they just walked past him
They never hurt a hair, they just let him die.
For people had become more tender and they did not want to hurt Him;
They just walked down the street and left Him out in the rain.

II. The Revelation of Our Lord's Tears - John 11:33-35

Tears touch the heart of Jesus. He is the invisible mourner at every funeral and he takes care of when we say goodbye to the loved one on earth.
You have often hiked, why tears well up in your eyes
and burdens seem much more than you can bear.
But God is near, He sees your tears fall.
Tears are a language that God understands.

When grief has you down, it makes tears flow
Things didn't turn out the way you planned
But God will not forget you, His promises are true.
Tears are a language that God understands.

God sees the tears of a broken hearted soul
He sees your tears and hears them as they fall.
God weeps with man and takes him by the hand;
Tears are a language that God understands.

III. The Removal of Tears

If that chapter had ended before us with "Jesus wept," it would have been a sad chapter. Suppose after they got to the tomb we read, "Jesus wept and went about his daily business." There would be little comfort in the passage. If nothing but tears came out of it, it would be very different from the ordinary ways of our Lord. Tears! what are they alone salt water.

A cup of it would be of little value to anyone. But "Jesus wept," and then He commanded, "Roll away the stone." Then He cried, "Lazarus, come out!" As Lazarus struggled out of the tomb, Jesus said, "Rescue him and let him go."

A Jesus who never cried could never wipe my tears.
- Jesus stands to say: “Be of good cheer; I have conquered the world.” “Death no longer has dominion over him.”

The last time we read about tears for the saint in the Word of God is Revelation 21:4.
- There will be no hospitals or funeral homes in heaven. Everything will be health, life and love.
-God will wipe away all tears from their eyes. "No tears in heaven, no tears, no tears up there. Sorrow and pain will all be gone.”

But for the lost person "there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." Matt. 25:30
- The most common description of hell in the Bible is not fire, but tears, weeping and suffering.
- Those who reject the one who wept for them will weep forever.

A portrait of flamboyant adoration
Johannes 12:1-11

Before reading the passage:

There are certain scenes in Scripture that seem too sacred and priceless to touch. It's almost as if the Lord were saying to us, "Take off your shoes, you're walking on holy ground."
-John 12-20 records the last week of our Lord's life here on earth. It records his last hours on earth. We come here with a high level of respect and reverence.
- It is as if the Holy Spirit were saying: “Here He spent His last days. Here's what he did and that's how he died. Just be still and experience it. Take the time to feel the emotions and grasp the meaning of these words.

Simon, a leper whom Jesus healed, invited Jesus and his disciples to dinner. There was Lazarus, whom Jesus had raised from the dead, alone with Mary and Martha. A total of seventeen people.

What a beautiful scene that is!
-Simon opens his house to Jesus. Martha opens her hands and ministers to the guest, Mary opens her heart to love and anoints Jesus' head and feet with a perfume worth a year's wages, between $20,000 and $25,000 in today's economy.
-The essence of love is to ask, “How much can I do?” not “How little can I do.” Love has no boundaries, and neither does hate, as we will see when we read the first recorded words of look at Judas.

Mary is about to express her exuberant love for our Lord when she takes a pound of nard and anoints the head and feet of our Lord.
- A Roman pound was twelve ounces; not sixteen. Why was spikenard so expensive? Spikenard grows in the Himalayan mountains of India at elevations of 11,000 to 17,000 feet. The roots and spikes of the plant were used to make perfumes.

Mary is about to express extravagant adoration to the Lord Jesus.

The word extravagant is defined as overspending by overspending; going beyond what is reasonable, going overboard and doing too much.
- When it comes to worshiping our Lord Jesus, nothing is too extravagant. After all, He is worth anything we can show Him because everything we have comes from Him anyway. No gift is overdone; no token of love is exaggerated.
- Worshiping Mary can teach us much about our own worship of the Lord Jesus.

Gloria Gaither and Bill George wrote a song based on John 12 called "Broken and Spilled Out". I want to change the word spilled to poured because if you spill something, it's an accident. What Mary did was on purpose. Hear the words:
One day a simple village woman
Driven by love for their Lord
Ruthlessly poured out a valuable essence
disregard for contempt

And once it was broken and buried
A scent filled the whole room
Like a prisoner freed from his bonds
Like a spirit freed from the grave.
Broken and leaked
Just for love of you, Jesus
My most precious treasure
wasted on you
Broken and leaked
And poured at your feet
With sweet devotion
let me pour out
And used up for you.

Lord, You were God's precious treasure
His beloved and his own perfect son
Sent here to show me the Father's love
It was only made for love.
And though you were perfect and holy
You gave yourself up willingly
You spared no expense in my apology
You were used up and wasted on me.

Broken and leaked
Just for love of me, Jesus
My most precious treasure
wasted on me
Broken and leaked
And poured at my feet
With sweet devotion
let me pour out
And used up for me.

Read the section:

What a beautiful scene that is. I can imagine the conversation that must have taken place during that meal.
-Simon must have told how the Lord healed him of leprosy. How the rotten flesh had grown back and was now as smooth as a baby's flesh; how his fallen fingers reappeared; how his eyebrows had grown back; how much he loved the Lord for all he had done.

I think Lazarus must have said, “Well, that's nothing, Simon. I was in another world for four days. I saw the "Biggies" - Abraham, Moses, David and everyone else. And I saw paradise! But when I came out of that grave and they stripped me of those grave clothes, Peter's eyes were as big as plates!"
- They must have asked Lazarus all sorts of questions: “What did you see on the other side? What was it like coming back to life?”

Now we come to the heart of the passage. Watch as Mary expresses her love for Jesus!

I want you to see three things:

I. The Devotion to Mary - John 12:3

Mary's heart was about to burst with love for Jesus and all she had to do was show Him how much she loved Him. She gets up from the table, fetches an expensive bottle of perfume and anoints the head and feet of our Lord.

Matthew 26 and Mark 14 record this incident and call the perfume bottle an alabaster box.
-You need to know what an alabaster box is. It's actually a small vase that contained about twelve ounces of expensive perfume. The perfume was so precious that a special vase was made for the perfume. It was clay. The potter shaped the small vessel very carefully, like any small vase, until he reached the top. Then he made a long, thin neck that could be easily broken to let out a small amount at a time, and after the perfume was poured into the vase, he sealed it at the top so it could all be preserved until a special time, and then resealed.

Mary loved her brother, but she didn't rub the precious perfume on her dead brother. She saved it for Jesus! Watch her take that alabaster box; breaks off the lid, pours some of it on the head of our Lord and some on his feet, and wipes his feet with her hair.

At the time of Christ, people did not sit at a table to eat their meals. The tables they used were low to the floor and people leaned around the table while eating. Typically, their heads were near the table while their feet were further away. That would mean that someone approaching a person in such a position would be significantly taller than the person at the table. It is therefore assured that Mary would have taken a kneeling position beside Jesus to anoint his head and feet with the ointment.

In that one moment, Mary made a magnificent statement of devotion. By kneeling before him and anointing him, she declared her belief in him as the Messiah. She told everyone who saw her doing what she was doing that her faith was in the Lord Jesus Christ. At that moment she surrendered everything to Him!

Mary had more contact with Jesus than any of his disciples.

Jesus had said over and over again that he was going to die, but none of them understood. In fact, only one person understood, and that was Mary.
- The disciples were with Jesus much more than Mary and heard Him speak much more often than Mary, so why did she understand and not them?

Every time we see Mary she is at the feet of our Lord, listening, learning and loving him. Mary appears three times at the center of the Gospels.

(1) The first time she shows up is at her house. Martha works, preparing a meal for Jesus and others, and Mary sits at his feet and listens as he teaches. Luke 10:38-42.

(2) Next time we meet them at the tomb of Lazarus. He has just died and Jesus has arrived at the tomb. Mary runs to Jesus and bows down in supplication at his feet, John 11:28-32.
(3) Last time we see her, she offers her worship to Him because of what He means to her, John 12:1-11; Mark 14:1-9; Matthew 26:6-13.
1. The first time she is at His feet. Learning: Hear His Word.
2. Next time she is leaning at his feet, experience his works, John 11
3. Here she is at his feet, loving: Declaring his worth, John 12

Washing the feet was something a humble servant would have done. Mary put her pride, her position, everything aside and wiped Jesus' feet with her hair. When Mary did this, she humbled herself and laid her glory at His feet, for a woman's glory is her hair, 1 Cor. 11:15.
You see, everyone there had a reason to worship the Lord Jesus that day:

● Lazarus had just been raised from the dead; but he did not worship, he observed.
● Simon the leper had been healed of leprosy and the God of creation ate in his house, but he did not worship, he also observed.
● Martha saw Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead, as did Mary, but she does not worship, she works and worries.
● Eleven of the disciples had experienced the saving touch of Jesus and were blessed to be with him, but they did not worship, they only watched.
● Judas Iscariot is in the presence of the only one who could save him from his sins and deliver his soul from Hell, but instead of worshiping him, he complains and finds fault.
● Mary is the only one who worships and Jesus said that wherever this gospel is preached around the world what this woman did will be told in her memory.

I gave my life for you, I shed my precious blood
So that you may be redeemed and raised from the dead
I gave, I gave my life for you, what did you give for me?
I gave, I gave my life for you, what did you give for me?

II. The accusation of Mary - John 12:4-6

Mark 14:4 says, "They rebuked them harshly." The Greek points out that they "snorted their indignation like an angry horse."
-Why would anyone criticize another for a good deed? Someone said it doesn't take size to criticize!

These are the first recorded words of Judas in the NT and they reveal his heart. His complaint related to doing too much for Jesus.
- Judas sold Jesus for 30 pieces of silver or about 120 denarii. Mary gave a sacrifice two and a half times in worship of the Lord!
- There are always those who think that the Church can do too much or give too much to the cause of Christ.

Did you notice? It was Judas who incited the disciples to anger (Matthew 26:8).

-G. Campbell Morgan said, "It's a huge compliment to be criticized by certain people."

Why this waste?
"That's worth a year's wages! Listen, if she just had to wash his feet, she could have used water! Why go to extremes? Why the waste?”
- Nothing we do for Jesus is wasted!

Did you notice that Mary never tried to defend herself? She knew that even if she tried to explain, people with that kind of temperament would never understand anyway. They're the "ask how little can we do for Jesus" people. They know nothing of the Spirit of Mary when they give their best to the Master.

John adds that Judas "did not care for the poor, but was a thief." The Greek word for "thief" forms our English word "kleptomaniac" which denotes a person who is a compulsive thief. He was holding the bag with money and he had been picking, robbing and stealing from the bag the entire time.

III. The Defense of Mary - Matthew 26:10-13

"Leave her alone" means: "That's enough! Stop! She had done nothing wrong and everything right!
- Jesus did not hesitate to come to Mary's defense and correct her.

Frosted. 26:10 "She has done a good work for me". There are two Greek words for good. One means morally good. The other word used here means something beautiful, attractive, lovely. It is love communicated.

Why did Jesus call it a beautiful work? Because he was aware of her loving motive; her beautiful heart and spirit.

There is a beautiful truth here: She could not pour the perfume on Jesus and wipe His feet with her hair without getting some of it on her and blessing others as well.

Many of us have unused perfume. We must break a vase and anoint the Lord. He would be honored. We would be blessed and so would others.

A parade for Jesus
Johannes 12:12-19

Before reading the passage:

Let me tell you where we are in relation to our Lord's life and death on the cross.
-Jesus had just raised Lazarus from the dead! He was the talk of the town! A man was dead four days and Jesus raised him from the dead!
- Then Simon the leper whom Jesus healed invited Jesus to a supper together with his disciples Lazarus, Mary and Martha. There were seventeen in all.
- After this supper, Mary anointed the head and feet of our Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair. Judas rebuked Mary, calling what she had done to Jesus a waste. Then Jesus rebuked Judas and asked him to leave them alone. What she had done was a good thing.
-Frosted. 26:14-16 tells us that Judas sneaked up to the high priest that night and agreed to betray Jesus to them. And from then on he looked for ways to betray Jesus.

The next day is Sunday. There are only four days left until Passover. The Jewish leaders want to kill Jesus, but not during the Passover celebration. Their plan was to capture and execute him after the festival was over and the people had dispersed.
-But regardless of the enemy's wishes, the Lord would die at the very time ordained in God's eternal plan.
- Fittingly, the Lamb of God was sacrificed on the same day that the Passover lambs were sacrificed, because He is "Christ our Passover" sacrifice (1 Corinthians 5:7). Therefore, Jesus prepared to enter Jerusalem publicly to force the issue of His death.

The exact day the Lord chose to enter Jerusalem fulfilled one of the most remarkable OT prophecies, Daniel's prophecy of the 70 weeks.
- Note Daniel 9:24-26. Through Daniel, the Lord foretold that the time from the decree of Artaxerxes ordering the rebuilding of the Temple (445 BC) to the coming of the Messiah would be 69 weeks, or 483 Jewish years. This means that the royal entry would take place on Nisan 9 AD or April 6 AD 30. Our Lord entered Jerusalem that day riding on a donkey. This day was prophesied 400 years before this day and took place on the exact day.
- God's Word is inspired, infallible and infallible. It is true, reliable and trustworthy. Scripture is given by God!

Read the section

All four gospels record our Lord's royal entry into Jerusalem, but John's account is somewhat shorter than that of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Remember that John wrote his gospel some forty years after the synoptic gospels. He did not record most of what had already been recorded, but he added the details that the other three Gospel writers did not record. About ninety percent of what John wrote is new material, so John does not tell his readers much about what happened in the last week of our Lord's life on earth.
-He doesn't say:
● Now Jesus has made sure that two of his disciples get the donkey and his foal.

● How the Pharisees insisted that Jesus silence those who praised Him and that Jesus refused, saying that if He did this the rocks would cry out in praise.
● How our Lord wept over Jerusalem or how he cursed the barren fig tree.
● How he cleansed the temple or performed miracles of healing.
● From our Lord giving the discourse on the Mount of Olives with the prophecy about the last days.
● From the agonizing prayer of our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane.

John narrows his focus to three major events that occurred in the final week of our Lord's mortal ministry:
1. Mary's anointing of Jesus in preparation for His burial - John 12:1-11
2. Jesus' royal entry into Jerusalem - John 12:12-19
3. The Greeks' request to meet with Jesus - John 12:20-26

As we look at this parade for Jesus I want us to see:

I. The engineer

You have to understand that Jesus was in control of everything that happened during his royal entry.

The Book of Exodus required that each family sacrifice its own lamb. They should bring the lamb four days before Passover and have it examined for any flaws or blemishes.
-While the lambs are brought in and examined, Jesus, the Lamb of God, rides and He too is examined, and those who examine Him declare: "I find no fault in Him!"

It is estimated that around 30,000 Jews normally lived in Jerusalem in Jesus' day, but that during Passover four to six times that city's population would gather to celebrate Passover and camp around Jerusalem. Instead of 30,000 people in Jerusalem, there were about 200,000 people and thousands of lambs.

Check out the procession! Again, Jesus constructs everything that happens! He's in control!
-Jesus rides on an unharmed donkey. That alone is a small miracle. Most people trying to ride an unbroken colt would have been thrown to the ground. I wonder if the young colt recognized that Jesus was the Lord of creation and saw it as life's greatest privilege to serve the Son of God.
-Jesus fulfills the prophecy of Sach. 9:9; Ps.118:25a 26a

Thousands are around and behind him, shouting, "Blessed is the king of Israel who comes in the name of the Lord!"

They cut palm branches and wave them in front of him and put some in the road in front of him; others spread their cloaks before him.
- Normally kings would ride a strong white horse in great triumph AFTER a great victory, but Jesus comes BEFORE His victory and does not ride a war horse but a donkey, the symbol of peace.

The waving of palm branches began 200 years earlier.

Antiochus Epiphanes had desecrated the Jewish temple altar by slaughtering a pig on the altar, spilling its blood everywhere, and even drinking some of its blood. Antiochus Epiphanes had brought disgrace on the Jewish temple with his Syrian army.
- It was they that Judas Maccabeus, known as the Hammer, and the other Maccabees came in and drove out the Syrian army. In celebration, the Jews waved palm branches before Judas Maccabeus for the overthrow of their oppressors.
-Now the Jews were oppressed by the Romans. They expected Jesus to overthrow the Romans. Realizing he wouldn't, the crowd that chanted "Hail Him" ​​on Sunday chanted "Nail Him" ​​on Friday!

II. Hear the cheers

Does it strike you as strange that Jesus accepts and even encourages this praise?
- This is totally different from anything he's done before. So far we're seeing him withdraw from public attention.
- When people wanted to make him king earlier, he escaped them. When He raised Jairus' daughter from the dead, He commanded His disciples not to say anything about it. When he comes down from the Mount of Transfiguration, he warns those with him not to tell anyone what they saw.
Now He does not discourage praise. In fact, he encourages them and prepares for them.

Why the change?

Up to this point Jesus has said that My hour or My time has not yet come. Notice John 2:4 (at the wedding), John 7:30 (they wanted to kill him but could not take him because his hour had not yet come); John 8:20 (They wanted to kill him again, but his time had not yet come.)
-But from that point on he says, “My time has come.” He knew it was time for him to offer himself as a sacrifice for sin—John 12:27; John 13:1; John 16:32; John 17:1.

I know something the Jews didn't know that day.

On this day, Jesus rides into Jerusalem as a LAMB, ready to die as our sacrifice.

The day is coming soon when he will ride into Jerusalem, not on a donkey and not as a lamb, but he will ride in on a strong white horse and the saints will follow him and he will ride in a LION to reign!
Revelation 19:11-13
When the trumpet of the Lord sounds and time is no more
And the morning breaks forever bright and beautiful.
When the saved of the earth gather on the other shore,
and over there the role is called, I'm in!

Ride on, King Jesus, ride on!

Lord, we would see Jesus
Johannes 12:20-26

The Pacific Garden Missions is located on State Street in Chicago. It was there that Billy Sunday was saved and later preached. Billy Sunday was a professional baseball player. As his fame as a baseball player began to grow, he began drinking. He soon became an alcoholic. One night while walking home from a bar, he passed the Pacific Garden Mission.
He heard singing at the mission and sat on the steps to listen. There God spoke to his heart and there he was saved. Later He preached on the mission. In the pulpit he put a plaque that said, "Lord, we would see Jesus." It was a reminder to him every time he stood up to preach that he had to preach Jesus, for only Jesus could satisfy the deepest need of the human heart.

Shortly after I committed myself to preaching, the pastor of my home church had those same words printed on his pulpit. It spoke to my heart so much that I put the words in the pulpit where I was pastor, "Lord, we would see Jesus."

When we come to this passage I want us to see:

I. The request of the Greeks - John 12:20-21

That is still the cry of our world today. Unfortunately, in many of our churches, people see everything but Jesus. You see They see:

1. Personalities
Unfortunately, some churches only see the pastor or staff. Sometimes the pastor rises up himself: he is the hero of every story or illustration he uses; he wants you to be impressed with his knowledge or education; He wants you to call him "doctor".
- A man said that there are so many doctors sitting in our pulpit that one might think that God is sick.

2. Services
- Music has become nothing more than “meat on the parade” in many churches. It's no longer about praise or worship, it's about performance.
-Some churches have 45 minutes singing and 10 minutes preaching the Word. Instead of the music and the preached word being used together to exalt Jesus and point the way to Jesus, there is a competition between those who sing and those who preach.

There is nothing wrong with programs as long as they focus on Jesus.

Why did these Greeks want to see Jesus? No doubt they have heard of His teaching, of miracles, even of Lazarus. ALSO because they were dissatisfied with what they had devoted themselves to, namely philosophy; the search for answers to the great questions of the universe.
- I've heard a good definition of philosophy: "Philosophy is like a blind man in a dark room looking for a black cat that isn't there."

Let me give you an example: There was a poor old man who had nothing but a beautiful white horse. They said to the old man, "You have nothing but this beautiful white horse.

But the horse is a good thing. Why don't you sell the horse so you can live well the rest of your life?” The old man said, “Whether the horse is good or bad, I can't say. I'll have to wait and see.” The next day the white horse ran away. So they said to the old man, “Your horse ran away; that's a bad thing.” The old man said, “Whether it's good or bad, I can't say. I'll have to wait and see.” The next day the white horse came back and a beautiful black horse followed him home. They said: "Old man, the white horse is back home and has brought a black horse with him. That's good." The old man said, "Whether it's good or bad, I can't say. I'll have to wait and see." The next day, the old man's son tried to ride the black horse, and it threw it it off and broke his arm and leg. They said, "Old man, that black horse was a bad thing. It broke your son's arm and leg." say. I must wait and see." The next day a war broke out and all the young men had to go to war and all were killed. They said, "Old man, it is good that your son's arm and leg are broken, otherwise he would have been sent to war and he too would have been killed." The old man said: "Whether it is good or not I cannot say. I must wait and see."
- The Greeks were involved in such things, and it did not correspond to their heart's needs. No wonder they said, "Lord, we want to see Jesus."

They asked Phillip to take them to Jesus. Phillip had a Greek name so they figured Phillip would help them. But Phillip didn't know what to do. They were pagans. He had heard Jesus say that he had come to the lost house of the Jews. Although Jesus said, "I have other sheep that are not out of this fold," he didn't know if he meant Gentiles. So he went to Andrew for advice.

Phillip and Andrew went and told Jesus.

i like andrew He was quiet, always in the background, but every time you see him in Scripture, he brings someone to Jesus. He brought his brother Peter to Jesus; He brought the boy with him
with his lunch to Jesus and Jesus lunched 5,000; now he is bringing these Greeks to Jesus.

There is no record of Jesus ever speaking to them, but I believe he did. I can't imagine Jesus rejecting anyone.

II. The Answer to the Greeks - John 12:23-26

This was the turning point in Jesus' ministry. The fact that these Greeks showed up and wanted to see Jesus was a signal for Jesus. His hour had come.
-The Jews rejected Jesus, their Messiah. "He came to his own, and his own did not receive him."
-Israel and the Jews had rejected Him; Now He must reject them and turn to the Gentiles.
-Israel's rejection was in the O.T. intended. In Romans 9:25-29.
-There will be a partial hardening in Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles come in - Rom. 11:1,5,25-26

III. The reward of the Greeks - John 12:23-26

What does it mean that “the Son of man should be glorified”?

I used to think that the glorification of Jesus meant that Jesus had ascended into heaven, was seated on His throne at the right hand of the Father, and the light of glory emanated from His person. All of that is true, but that's not what Jesus meant when he said he was to be glorified.

The glorification of Jesus meant His death.

Then he speaks of a grain of wheat. If you place a grain of wheat anywhere, it remains a seed. But if you plant it, it will bear fruit. It dies so that it can give rise to life.
-Jesus could have lived, but there would have been no life. There is no life without the cross.

Someone calculated that if you plant a wheat seed, take the crop, and plant all the seeds from that crop, plant all the seeds from the next crop, etc., that it would only take fourteen years for the entire land area of ​​the earth to be full.
- Jesus, who dies, is planted, rises to life, will bring life to Jews and Gentiles.
-Note: Jesus is talking about planting seeds; Don't bury seeds. A young man visited an old missionary in the deepest jungle. He said to the missionary, "They really buried themselves out here in this mission field." The missionary said, "No, I didn't bury myself here, I planted myself here."

The same is true for us when we follow Christ—John 11:25-26
- The only Jesus people will see is the Jesus within us. People need to see Jesus in our attitude, our actions, our accomplishments, our goals, our dress, and our appetites.

- “Lord, we would see Jesus!” Let others see Jesus in you. Then we will hear him say, "Well done!"

Jesus' Thoughts on the Way of the Cross
Psalm 118:24; Johannes 12: 27-32

Have you ever wondered what was on our Lord's heart and mind the last week before the cross?
-Jesus came to this earth to die for the sins of mankind. He didn't come primarily to work miracles or to teach the truths of God or to be an example for us how to live life. He came to die.

The most frequently quoted Psalm in the N.T. is Psalm 118. It is also the Psalm read year after year before and during Passover. The whole psalm speaks of Christ our Passover and speaks of his sacrifice on the cross.
-Look at a verse in Psalm 118 (Ps. 118:24). We use this verse to praise God for the days we live, but this verse is talking about a day; the day Jesus was glorified when he died on the cross.

What were our Lord's thoughts in these last days before he was crucified?

I. His soul was troubled before the cross - John 12:27a

When Jesus speaks of His "soul," He speaks of His interior - Self. The deep inner seat of His feelings relates to His whole humanity.
- He wants us to know that his soul was not at peace. Inwardly, he was troubled by what lay ahead.
-I don't know about you; but the idea of ​​Jesus being "sorrowfully afflicted" does not fit well with my usual idea of ​​Jesus.
-On most occasions, Jesus was bold and courageous and fearless.
● But at the last supper, his spirit was troubled—John 13:21
● In Gethsemane his soul was sad - Mark 14:32-34

Why was his soul troubled?
● Because of his strong, natural aversion to the cross. The cross was an unspeakably cruel and humiliating thing. "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree." Jesus would not have been human if he had not shied away from the thought of hanging on a cross.

I believe there were some things more terrible than the physical agony and humiliation of dying on a cross that he had in mind.
● He would become sin for us - He who knew no sin.
● He would experience the full outpouring of his Father's wrath in our favor because the Lord would put upon him the iniquity of all of us. Who can imagine the crushing guilt he felt in paying the full price for our sins?
● For the first and only time he would experience the separation from his father. The Father cannot tolerate sin in His presence. For those who die in their sins, the greatest torment will be separation from the Father.

II. Our Lord's Decree Concerning the Cross - John 12:27b

Jesus prayed something like this in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Still, he was determined to obey the will of God.
- Notice what he said: "For this I came into the world."

III. The trust of our Lord through the cross - John 12:28-30

Jesus was confident that his death on the cross would accomplish what the Father wanted: the Father would be glorified and sins justified.

This is the third time that the Father honors his son by speaking audibly about his son - at the beginning of his ministry, in the middle of his ministry and at the end of his earthly ministry.

A. The father testified of his son's purity—Matt. 3:16-17

The father declared publicly: “I am well pleased with him. He is my beloved, sinless, pure Son.

B. The father testified of his son's preaching—Matthew 17:5

This is my beloved son; Hear Him... Hear My Son!
● He spoke of the need to be born again
● He explained that following people's laws and traditions would not commend them to God.
● He warned of eternal judgment for those without Christ

C. The father testified of his son's passion - John 12:28

Our Lord's death on the cross would glorify the Father and exalt the Son as the supreme head of His redeemed people.

How did Jesus glorify the Father by dying on the cross?
1. The cross demonstrates the holiness of the Father because it shows that sin contradicts his holy character.
2. The cross demonstrates the Father's righteousness because it shows that the Father's righteous character requires that sin be paid for.
3. The cross demonstrates the anger of the father because it pleased the Lord to hurt his son - Isaiah. 53:10
4. The cross shows the father's love because he was willing to let his son die for us.
5. The cross shows the Father's mercy, for on the cross his Son bore our sorrows and worries so that we would not perish.
6. The cross demonstrates the amazing grace of the Father, for to all who accept him he has given the right to become children of God.
7. The Cross glorifies the Father because it will resonate with His eternal praise.

IV. The expectation of our Lord after the cross - John 12:31-32

Jesus died to pay the redeeming price for our sins, but also to defeat Satan once and for all - 1 John 3:8b
-Satan is defeated and "cast out". The tense of the verb "cast out" indicates that Satan is gradually being cast out. It will be in four phases:

Stage I: At Calvary's cross, Satan's power over the world was finally broken—Col. 2:15

Stage 2: Satan is thrown out of heaven. That hasn't happened yet. Satan still has access to heaven to accuse the brethren. Revelation 12:10

Stage 3: Satan is thrown into an abyss for 1,000 years while Christ reigns and reigns on this planet during His millennial reign - Rev. 20:2-3

Stage 4: Satan will be thrown into the lake of fire forever and that will be his end. Fame! Revelation 20:10

Because of Jesus Christ, Satan is a walking dead spirit—1 John 3:8

A few years ago, research was done on people who had been bitten by dead snakes. The reason for the research came after recording a patient who was bitten by a snake while gardening. The man had chopped off the head of a rattlesnake with his shovel. As he bent down to pick up the snake's head, it bit him.
Research showed that 15 percent of people admitted for snake bites were bitten by a dead snake. That was a surprise, because most people knew that dead snakes still bite. Snakes have a reflex action that lasts even after they are killed. Because of this, a decapitated rattlesnake can continue to bite for up to an hour after death.
This information can help us protect ourselves from venomous snakes. There is also a spiritual application. The Bible calls Satan a serpent. He is still dangerous, even though Christ has dealt a fatal blow.

John points to a spiritual attraction to Christ—John 12:32-33
Joh 12:32 And I, when I am exalted above the earth, will draw all people to me.
Joh 12:33 This he said to indicate what death he should die.

Our Lord draws us with His love - 1 John 4:19
1Jo 4:19 We love him because he first loved us.

Jesus warns us not to waste our chance to be saved - John 12:35-36
Joh 12:35 Then Jesus said to them, A little while longer the light is with you. Go while you have the light lest darkness come upon you; for he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.
Joh 12:36 As long as you have light, believe in the light, so that you may become children of the light. Jesus spoke these things and withdrew and hid himself from them.

In the November 2002 issue of Guide Post Magazine, the story of God's guidance and protection was told by Major Michael Halt. Halt's battalion had been ordered to cross the Kuwaiti border as part of Operation Desert Storm. The major was the second in command of 130 marines.

The unit had already been under heavy artillery fire and now faced the possibility of oil
fires and landmines. Thousands of Iraqi troops were waiting just across the Kuwaiti border.
The Major prayed, "Dear God, help me to lead my troops wisely. Watch over us and protect us.” As the Marines prepared to cross the next morning, they wrote letters to loved ones in case they were killed in action.
The march out was ordered before dawn the next morning. The sky was clear and the men began advancing towards the border. As they advanced it started raining and then it started raining. The rain fell so hard and fast that the men couldn't see the desert landscape ahead, hampering the advance. That went for days.
Not only were the men worried about the enemy ahead, now the weather seemed to be against them. Major Halt prayed, "Father, please stop this rain and protect us." The rain continued to batter the unit until they finally neared the Kuwait border. At the border, the battalion halted while the enemy waited on the other side.
On the day of the invasion, the men awoke to clear skies and sunshine. As they neared the border, they couldn't believe the sight in front of them. The torrential rains had washed away the sand, exposing metal discs planted across their path. It was an Iraqi minefield. God protected these men and instructed them using the storms. By the way, he can also use your storms and trials to give you direction. Trust in His guidance day after day, especially in difficult times.

A servant moment
Johannes 13:1-17

These verses are so amazing that we cannot possibly cover them in one message - or in a hundred messages.
- I'm not going to preach a hundred messages on this passage, but I want to preach three messages on it.
● In this first message I want us to see the example that Jesus left for us to follow.
● In another message I want us to see that Jesus wants to wash our feet.
● And in another message I want us to see that Jesus wants us to wash the feet of others.

Here we find Jesus in a servant moment.
• He is less than 24 hours from the Cross. In Luke 22:7-8 we are told that Jesus sent Peter and John to prepare the upper room for Jesus and his disciples.
• The disciples were excited because they knew that Jesus would establish his kingdom. They were interested in what role they would play in his empire and what position they would hold. Before they reached the upper room, they began arguing about who would be greatest in His kingdom, and the arguing continued as they sat back around the table.
• Leonardo DaVinci's famous painting, The Last Supper, while a beautiful work of art, does not accurately depict the scene of that night.
• There was no table or chairs to eat the sacrament on. As was customary, the disciples leaned around a U-shaped table, leaning on one arm while they ate with the others.
• I believe when the disciples entered this Upper Room they were all determined to sit in the places of honor—on the right and left of the Lord. I can almost see them pushing and shoving into the room, hurrying past the pool of water where a servant would normally have been present to wash the guest's feet as they entered to prepare the meal.
• As they continued arguing about who would be greatest, it was obvious that none of them would do the dirty work. Jesus got up from the table, put his clothes aside, took a towel, girded himself and began to tie it wash the disciple's feet.
• Notice John 13:14-15
John 13:14 If then I, your lord and commander, have washed your feet; you shall also wash one another's feet.
Joh 13:15 For I have given you an example, that you should do what I have done to you.

Being a servant is just like Jesus. When God planned to reach the world for Himself, He planned to do it through a servant.
• Phil. 2:5-10 What does Paul mean when he says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus?” Well, he's not referring to the spiritual abilities of the Lord Jesus. He's not talking about intelligence. He talks about our Lord's attitude, His spirit, His conduct, His approach to life.
• How did our Lord deal with life? Other. Other. Other! Our attitude toward others determines how we see things, and it also determines our usefulness to the Lord as we go through this life.

Every day and in every way we are to have the mind, spirit, and attitude of Christ toward others. Our sovereign became a servant!

We are to be servants like Him!
• They say, “If I really became a servant, people would take advantage of me! They would run over me! It wouldn't be easy.” It never was and never will be. But before we're ever going to be anything to God, we must learn to be servants.
Let me share with you four problems servants face:

I. ego

One of the first things Jesus says we must do if we are to follow him to be one of his disciples is to deny ourselves - Matthew. 16:24. It's the same word as ego. It means saying "no" to our ego.
- There is someone in each of us who wants to get up and push himself; even before the Lord!
- In his book on leadership, James Autry says that ego means getting rid of God. It wants my way, so I crowd out God.

But did you know that a true servant has no ego? A true servant has no right to say, "I will not." "I will not." "I will not."
-Ego says, “I will assert myself.” And when you have this spirit, you say things and you do things and you don't do things just to boost your ego.

Then James Autry said, "We must move from supplanting God to glorifying God!"
- We move away from the place where we say, "If I don't prevail, but it exalts God, I'm for it!"
-Sometimes we get mad or bitter or angry because we don't assert ourselves and that means the ego sits on the throne of our lives.

A few years ago, a well-known preacher was scheduled to preach at the Mississippi State Convention. Something came up at the last minute and he couldn't come. The leaders began to wonder who to put in his place at this late stage. Finally someone said, "Why don't we ask Frank Pollard?" Frank Pollard was the pastor of FBC Jackson for over 10 years. It was the largest church in the state. When the leaders asked him if he would take the preaching seat, they told him that they had asked someone else to preach but he had to cancel and was wondering if he would step in now. With a sweet, kind spirit, he said, "I'll be happy to do it." Pollard was close to telling the convention leaders that Dr. Pollard was never asked to do anything during the convention - not to preach or serve on a committee or even lead a silent prayer! Here was the pastor of the largest church in the state; His church consistently donated more to the cooperative program than any other church in the state, and he was never asked for anything. Still, there was never a word of complaint about anything, but when asked to serve, he graciously said he would be happy to do so.
-He had just switched to Exalting God. what about your ego

II. Bald

Presto means immediately, get over it, act now.
- When a servant is asked by the Lord to do something, it means to do it now.

Most of us are like our children when we ask them to do something. You say, "Why?" "I will later." "After a while."
- If a master asks a servant for something, there must be no discussion. Just do it!

We don't live in a presto world. God says, "If you're just fooling around, you're missing an opportunity."

Mary anoints our Lord's feet with perfume and the first thing we hear is a lament from Judas, “Why this waste?” Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Wherever the gospel is preached, what she has done for me is told.”
-In Luke 24 we find the women going to the tomb to anoint their Lord's body. It is too late now to anoint Him BEFORE His death.

III. Taste good

If we want to do something for Christ, we have to do it with gusto!
- Genuine passion should drive us to do what we do for our Lord. No half-hearted service to our Lord! Throw your heart and soul into it! Do it with everything you've got!
-Too often we just go through the motions. No zeal! No enthusiasm! It was Jesus who spoke to the church in Laodicea and said, “You are neither hot nor cold. You make me sick. I will spit you out of my mouth."

What a difference it would make if we served the Lord with enthusiasm. The Lord of Heaven wants us to get excited for Him!

IV. Memo

Memo, did you get the memo? Did you get the last word?

In John 21, our Lord is about to ascend into heaven. He meets with a group of His disciples. He tells Peter to feed his sheep if he loves him.
-Peter looks at John. Then he says, “Now, Lord, what do you want John to do?” Jesus is basically saying, “That's none of your business. You just do what I asked you to do.”
- The real problem is: “I want you to follow me. Do everything I ask you.”

Mary, the mother of Jesus, learned this truth when she told the servants at the wedding after they had run out of wine: "Whatever he says to you, do it!"
- He says: “Fill the water jars.” “Well, that won't solve the problem. you need wine; no water.” “Just fill them in. Do it."

Jesus is our great leader and Lord. What He's asking of you doesn't make sense to you, but do it!

Take care of your ego. Obey him presto. Do it with taste. Follow the memo.

We need our feet washed!
Johannes 13:1-12

The two most important washing of feet in world history took place within five days.
-Once on the Saturday before Palm Sunday, the Saturday before Jesus rode into Jerusalem to introduce himself as king, He went into the house of Mary, who washed His feet with costly perfume. She did not use water on His feet because washing with water symbolized cleansing from sin and Jesus had no sin. Rather, she anointed his feet with spikenard, which spoke of divinity, kingship, and kingship.
- Five days later, in the upper room, Jesus washed the dirt from his disciple's feet with water, which spoke of purification.

John gives a very conscious and detailed account of what happened in the Upper Room. It is a beautiful picture of Phil. 2:5-8.
● He rises from the sacrament (John 13:4) Just as Jesus rose from the last supper, in eternity past He arose from the banquet he continually enjoyed with the Father and the Spirit to willingly take human form . It wasn't like a committee of three—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—voted on who would go, and Jesus lost two to one. No, in the council of eternity past, the Son said, "I choose to leave the intimacy of this heavenly banquet to enter time and space on earth to redeem mankind."

● Laying off his garments (John 13:4) Just as Jesus laid aside his earthly garments, Phil. 2 says he laid aside his robes of glory to come and dwell among us.

● He took a towel (John 13:4) As Jesus wrapped himself in a towel, so he wrapped his divinity in human flesh. He was still God, fully God, always God - yet wrapped in the towel of humanity.

● He girded himself (John 13:4) The word “linen” used here refers to a linen cloth. Linen speaks of righteousness and is a picture of perfection. Jesus wraps himself in the righteous towel of human flesh, for he was like us; but without sin (Hebrews 4:15).

● He poured water into a basin (John 13:5) Water speaks of the Word. Paul says we are washed by the water of the word. Wrapped in the towel of human frailty, Jesus pours out His Word to us. He tells us who God is. He tells us how to live. He becomes flesh and dwells among us.

● He washes the disciple's feet (John 13:5). This model is not a picture of salvation but of sanctification; not of conversion, but of confession and cleansing (1 John 1:9). Walking through this world, I get dirty feet. And here is Jesus, not only pouring out the truth of purity, but interceding for you and me as He constantly washes us.

● He wipes them with the towel. (John 13:5). He will do the work; He won't leave us all wet. He will dry our feet and sustain us (Philippians 1:6). Seven things he does!

John 13:5 lets us know that Jesus had already "begun" to wash the disciple's feet.

Joh 13:5 After that he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and to dry them with the robe with which he was girded.

- In our previous study, I told you that the disciples were arguing about who would be greatest in our Lord's kingdom. All twelve disciples had passed the basin and water. Now Jesus takes the bowl and towel and tells them that because of their ego they would not humble themselves to serve others.

Let me share with you a few things that will show you that Jesus wants to wash our feet as well as the disciples' feet on this day.

I. Our Lord's Refreshment

Why would Jesus get up and wash his disciple's feet? What would motivate him to do this?
-Well, it had to be done and no one else would do it and He wanted to teach them a lesson about humility and servanthood, but there was a deeper motivation.

He loved her perfectly, unconditionally, without limit, forever, to the end—John 13:1
-Jesus knows that in less than 24 hours he will be on the cross dying for their sins. Yet His heart is still overwhelmed with love for His disciples.

Let me point out two important words so you can fully understand what Jesus is doing. Notice John 13:10-11
-There are two Greek words here; both are translated "to wash" in the KJV, but are very different.
● "The washed one" The word "washed" here is the Greek word "LOUD" and should be translated as "bathing". It means bathing everyone.
● The other word to wash (“just have to wash his feet”) is the Greek word “nipto” meaning “to rinse certain places”. It speaks of communion or fellowship with the Lord.

We all need a spiritual washing, a bath, because we are all polluted with sin.
-All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Isaiah 1:18 says our sins, though scarlet, can be washed in the blood of Jesus and we will be washed white as snow.
-Only the blood of Jesus can wash away our sins.

What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me healthy again? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
Oh! Precious is the river that washes white as snow;
I know of no other source, Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

But we live and walk through a dirty, desecrated world. Though we are saved and washed snow white, there are areas of our lives that become dirty and need cleansing. Sometimes our thought life becomes polluted and needs to be cleaned. Sometimes our hands and feet get dirty and need cleaning.

- James 1:27 says to keep ourselves undefiled from the world.
-Psalm 119:9 "How shall a young man cleanse his ways? By paying attention to the Word of God.”

Some people believe that if they sin after being saved, they need to be saved again. If that were the case, none of us could be saved many minutes a day.
-Note 13:8 Jesus said, "Unless I wash you, you will have no part WITH me." He didn't say it
that you will have no part in me, salvation, but you will have no part in me; no community; no participation, no sharing with me, no fellowship with me.

You can measure your own spirituality by asking yourself how long it takes you to confess your sin and fellowship again after realizing that you have sinned.
- Carnal Christian let their sins pile up; those who walk in the Spirit confess their sins as soon as they become aware of them. They keep brief accounts with God.

II. Peter's reaction

It can be assumed that Jesus washed the feet of at least some of his disciples before he came to Peter.

Can you imagine what must have gone through Peter's mind as the Lord washed the feet of his disciples?
● He would have watched and thought, "How could John just sit and bow down to the Lord and do this menial task for him?"
● And now look! He washes Matthew's feet. Matthew was a terrible sinner - a tax collector! Does Matthew not know who is washing his feet?
● And oh no! Even Andrew, my own brother! No one knows how unworthy Andrew is better than me! I would never allow the Lord to do to me what Andrew allows him to do to him!

- John 13:6 “Then he came to Simon Peter” Peter answered: “Lord, you? You will wash my feet!”

III. Resistance of Peter - John 13:6-8

Peter pulls his feet under him and says, "You shall never wash my feet."
- Here is a disciple saying to his Master: “You shall never serve me.” Peter did not deny that he had to wash his feet, but he did not want Jesus to humble himself to wash his feet.

That is tantamount to disrespect. Finally, the first condition of discipleship is obedience. Peter simply refuses to submit to the Lord. Obedience is the proof of love.

Peter's heart may have been right, but his head was pretty wrong.

Think about it: none of the disciples would humble themselves to wash their feet. Well, they were all humiliated now, weren't they?
- You see, it takes humility and grace to serve others, but it takes humility and grace to allow others to serve you - even Jesus!

IV. Peter's receptivity - John 13:9-12

The picture here is crystal clear to the believer. When we accept Jesus as our personal Savior, He cleanses us from head to toe of our sins forever. However, as we go through life we ​​tend to fall into sin and we need a cleansing...not for the whole person as this was accomplished when we were saved and cannot be repeated but only for that particular one spot
we gather when we sin in our daily walk.
-I John 1:7-2:2 See Jesus is still washing feet!

So many of us are like Simon Peter. When the Lord convicts us as believers of sin in our lives and wants to cleanse us from sin, instead of confessing our sin to the Lord and asking His forgiveness for those sins, like Peter, we drag our dirty feet under us and say, " No, I don't want you to wash my feet."
- If all of our Lord's disciples had to have their feet washed and cleansed, what makes you think that you don't need to clean your feet?
- The secret of true spiritual joy is the practice of promptly confessing sins and failures before the throne of grace.
-Ps. 32:5
Psa 32:5 I have confessed my sin to you, and I have not hidden my iniquity. I said: I will confess my transgressions to the LORD; and you have forgiven the iniquity of my sin. Sela.

Wash each other's feet!
Johannes 13:12-17

Before reading the passage:

Jesus knew his time had come. His death on the cross was less than 24 hours away. He would humble himself and submit to his Father's will and die on the cross for the sins of mankind.
-While Jesus was in his attitude of humiliation, His disciples were arguing over who among them would be greatest in His kingdom.

What a contrast! Our Lord sets a living example of servanthood as he washes the feet of his disciples, and in their pride they strive to exalt themselves!

Without a word, Jesus rose from his lying position at the table, took off his robe, girded himself with a towel like a servant, took a basin of water and began to wash and dry the feet of his disciples.
- After washing the feet of all the disciples, including the feet of Judas, although he knew that that night he would betray him into the hands of the enemies, he went back to his place at the table, sat down and presented them with an important one Ask.

Read the section:

Jesus asked, "Do you know what I have done to you or for you? You had no idea. They knew WHAT he did, but they didn't know WHY he did it.

Have you ever tried washing someone's feet at the end of a long, hard, hot day? How about washing someone's feet that are covered in dirt? Have you ever put your face next to an ingrown toenail? It's not as fun as you think. Some feet really stink!
- There are some churches, including the Freewill Baptists, that perform foot washing as part of their regular practice. Some churches even call it a third ordinance—baptism, communion, and washing of feet.
- They will say: “On Thursday evening we will have a foot washing ceremony. So everyone comes out Thursday night.” Just what do they do before they come to church? They wash their feet. Why? Because you don't want anyone to touch your dirty feet! But that's beside the point. The only feet that need washing are dirty feet. It's embarrassing when someone messes with their feet.

Jesus never wanted this to be an ordinance. He didn't say, "Do WHAT I do"; He said, "Do as I do." Jesus did not say, "Do as I do"; but, "Let this spirit be in you." Have a servant spirit.

I. Jesus gave us an example - John 13:15

The leader goes first.
- Jesus would never ask us to do anything that he would not do. That's what a leader does. First he does it himself. Then he explains it. Then you do it. But the leader always goes first.

- Lest we misunderstand, He spells it out for us - John 13:16. "I did it for you. And if I did it for you, you can do it for someone else."
In this one verse you have the key to the Christian life: DO AS Jesus did!

Peter said, "Lord, you will not wash my feet. What you are doing is demeaning. This is the work of slaves. That's not your job. That's below you."
- What bothered them was not WHAT He was doing, but that HE was doing it.
- Foot washing was fine as long as a lower class person did it.

Do you remember what the disciples argued about? Who was the greatest? Well, Jesus was the greatest - Matt. 23:11-12

Two lessons Jesus wanted to teach his disciples:

A. The lesson of humility

There are many paradoxes in the Christian life:
• The way to life is through death.
• The way to get is to give.
• The path to greatness leads to becoming a servant to others.
• The way to greatness is through humility.

Being a servant doesn't start with what you do, being a servant starts with the attitude of the heart. It's not an act, it's an attitude.
- The same action can be the action of a servant or the action of a proud person.
● You can visit a nursing home with a servant's heart, or you can do it out of a sense of duty.
● You can bake bread because you want to serve someone, or you can do it because you want to gain favor and be commended for it.
● You can give money because you really want to serve, or you can give money to please someone.

-What makes the difference is the motivation in the human heart.
-Gal. 5:13 "Serve one another in love."

Humility is part of the lesson the Lord wants to teach us.
- Unless the only begotten Son of God, the King of kings, considered it beneath him to do the humblest work of a servant, there is nothing for which his disciples should count themselves too good.
- No sin is so offensive to God as pride.
● 1 Peter 5:5 “Clothed humbly.”
● Luke 18:14 “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled; and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”

-Big shots refuse to humble themselves. They think certain tasks and certain people are inferior to them. They think they are too good to do some things. This is why true humility is so rare.

1. It is the humble who serve most willingly.

Of course, if the applause is loud enough, the proud will serve. They will serve when given proper recognition. They will serve when the task is not theirs. But the humble will serve unconditionally.

2. The humble one remembers that what he does for others, he does for his Lord.” Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these, you did it to me.”

B. The lesson of love

The other lesson is to manifest love. We should love others so much that we delight in showing kindness to others, even in small things. We should take joy in alleviating someone's suffering and multiplying their joy, even if it means self-sacrifice and self-denial for us.
– “A truly great man is one who makes others feel great.”

II. Jesus gave us an admonition - John 13:15

"Do what I have done to you." Remember that when our Lord washes our feet, it is for cleansing. We often get dirty in this dirty world and sometimes the Lord uses other Christians to confront a brother about sin in their life.
-Gal. 6:1-2

Did you notice that Jesus didn't lecture about dirty feet? He just got on his hands and knees and washed them.
- When you are ready to wash your feet, keep your mouth shut when you see dirty feet. When I see dirty feet, I can either talk about the dirty feet, which is called judging, or I can interfere in that person's life by tending the situation on my knees in humility through intercession. Not only did Jesus point out the dirt on the disciples' feet, He did something about it.

When we wash our brother's feet:
1. Make sure the water is not too hot

It is painful to face our sin. Don't add to the discomfort by being judgmental or holier than you. It should be done with love and a spirit of gentleness. ALWAYS TRY TO BE ENABLED.

2.Make sure your own feet are clean.

Take the log out of your eye before attempting to remove the splinter from your brother's eye. Again, ALWAYS TRY TO BE DELIVERABLE.

3. Be ready to put your own feet through the washing process.

None of us are infallible. we all fall Be kind when you wash your brother's feet, and he will be more kind when washing your feet.

- We can fall into spiritual snare and not be aware of it until a kind brother opens our eyes
in addition. What a blessing to have someone who cares enough to wash our feet.
-Proverbs 27:17

How did Jesus do that?

1. He saw a need and moved to meet it.

2. He took the initiative and did not wait for an invitation.

3. He took off his uniform of size and got on his knees.

4. He didn't announce what he would do. He didn't get up and say, “Well, men, I am Jesus and now I'm going to wash your feet. You are about to see love in action. Watch me. take notes A few photos are allowed.” No, he just got up quietly and washed his feet. It wasn't something that all of Jerusalem could see. He kept it in their small circle.

5. He didn't just serve those he favored.

It might have been easy to wash John's feet. After all, John was the "beloved disciple." Nevertheless, John and his brother James were known as the "sons of thunder". And what about Simon Peter? He would deny Him thrice before the sun rose well. Then there was Thomas. He would doubt the word of others and refuse to believe in the resurrection of Jesus. Then there was Judas, who sold the Lord to the enemies for 30 pieces of silver. He treated them all equally.

6.He didn't wait for a thank you and didn't get one.

That's what a servant does. He sees a need and moves to meet it. Remember, everything starts with the heart.

III. Jesus gave us an expectation - John 13:17

"Fortunate or blessed if you know these things AND YOU DO."
-If we follow the example of our Lord, we will always be blessed. For the same reason, if we don't follow his example when we should, we will experience the opposite results.

Conclusion: If you have never been washed by Christ, you are dirty. No matter how pleasant you may look on the outside, you need a complete washing in the blood of the Lord Jesus.

Judas was there that day and Jesus washed his feet, but it didn't help because his heart had never been washed.

Have you ever taken a spiritual bath? Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb of God?

Judas Iscariot: So near; But so far away
Johannes 13:16-30

It would be difficult to imagine a more notorious biblical figure than Judas Iscariot; except the devil himself.
- Even people who never go to church know the name Judas Iscariot. No one would think of naming their son Judas. They may name their dog Judas, but never their son!
- Judas betrayed and sold not just a man or a country, but the precious Son of God. The Bible calls him the son of perdition, a devil, a thief, and the traitor!

His life started out so promising. The name "Judas" means "praise be to God". How must his parents have wanted him to live up to that name!
-The name Judas was a popular name in Israel. One of our Lord's half-brothers was named Judas, but after Judas Iscariot betrayed the Lord, he changed his name to Jude, like most others then called Judas. What Judas did destroyed the value of that name forever.
- The words of Jesus tell the tragic story when he said: "It would have been better for Judas if he had never been born."

The life of Judas Iscariot is a real tragedy considering:

1.The opportunities he had

He was one of eleven other men chosen by our Lord to follow Him and be with Him during His earthly ministry: to hear Him teach, to be in His presence, to see His power in working miracles; yet despite all these opportunities, he has betrayed our Lord.

2. The opportunities he missed

At least two and a half years he was with the person of salvation; yet he failed to be saved! No wonder Paul told us to examine ourselves because if it were possible for someone to follow Jesus while on earth and still remain lost, it is possible for there to be people in church every Sunday are whose names are in the church registers that were never saved.

As we study this man, Judas Iscariot, I want us to see:

I. His Revealer

John sprinkles the truth about Judas throughout his gospel. Note John 6:64, 70-71;
Johannes 13:11

If Jesus knew Judas would betray him, why did he choose him? Why would Jesus invite into the company of disciples a man who would become a traitor?

1. To fulfill Scripture - John 13:18

Which font? hp 41:9; John 55:12-14 David is referring to his best advisor, Ahithophel, who became a traitor and joined Absalom's rebellion against his father David. Ahithophel was Bathsheba's grandfather and he was angry with David for what he had done to his granddaughter.

When Absalom refused Ahithophel's advice to strike David quickly, he knew that David would regroup, gather more men for battle, and be exposed as a traitor. Like Judas, Ahithophel went out and hanged himself.
-Another scripture that needs to be fulfilled was Zach. 11:12-13 where we are told that the Messiah would be betrayed for thirty pieces of silver.

2. To prove His divinity - John 13:19

3. To serve as a warning to religious people

4. That our Lord chose Judas knowing he would betray him was a wonderful act of grace.

Jesus viewed Judas as a potential successor. Jesus called him to follow him just as sincerely as Peter, James, John and the others. If Judas had responded to the love and teachings of Jesus, he could have been a pillar in the early church.
- The question of why Jesus chose Judas to be his disciple is no more difficult to answer than this question: "Why did he choose us?" When the Lord first looked at us, did he see clean people? No. Like Judas, we possessed a fallen nature that wanted to usurp the glory that rightfully belonged to God. Jesus chose Judas and us as his followers not because we had anything to offer him, but because he had everything to offer us. It was all because of his grace.

How did Satan get Judas to work for him? Just like he makes us do his bidding. Notice John 13:2–27. We should not ignore Satan's plans. He has the power to put things in our hearts and minds, and He also has the power to take things out of our hearts and minds. Satan still walks the earth and seeks whom to devour.
-First he wants to penetrate our thoughts. He knocks on our mind's door and asks permission to enter. Once admitted, it takes complete control and governs the whole inner man.
- If we allow Satan to plant evil thoughts in our minds, we will soon find a harvest of evil habits in our hearts.
- Our only security against Satan is to resist him at the earliest moment. He has no power over our God, who is stronger than he. "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:7).

You may think that the last place Satan wants to associate is where God's people are. On the contrary, it is the first place. If Satan wants to overthrow the work of Christ, his best chance is to infiltrate God's people and sow discord among believers.
- In fact, Satan will put his man in the place of leadership if he can. Among the twelve there was only one office, that of treasurer, and it was held by Judas. The main quality people look for in someone who handles their money is honesty, and the disciples thought they found it in Judas. They trusted him to the end.

II. His decision
Life is made up of choices. The biggest decision in life is, "What are you going to do with Jesus?"
-Judas was in the presence of Jesus, but the presence of Jesus was never in him. Judas sold Jesus, but behind the traitor was the tempter. He listened to the voice of Jesus, but so did he
listened to Satan's voice.
-Even though Jesus knew Judas would betray him, he never revealed it to his disciples. If he did, the eleven would most likely have killed Judas on the spot when Peter tried to kill Malicious in the Garden.
-Jesus loved Judas like the other twelve and expressed the same love to him. He kept turning to Judas, wanting him to be saved. Everything that happened in the Upper Room was a last attempt to reach Judas: he washed his feet, quotes O.T. Prophecy, even the seating arrangement around the table as Jesus put Judas on His right side, the seat of honor.
-But Judas would sell Jesus to his enemies for 30 pieces of silver. Would you do that? Never! But some have sold Him for much less: for pleasure, for position, for popularity, for possession, for pride.

It can't be for silver, it can't be for gold,
But the prince of life is sold by the tens of thousands
Sold for an ungodly friendship, sold for a selfish end,
Sold for a fleeting trifle, sold for an empty name.

Sold at the Shrine of Fortune, sold at the Arbor of Pleasure,
Sold for your dreadful bargain which no one but God's eyes can see.
Consider my soul the question shall he be sold by thee?

Sold! Oh god what a moment! The voice of conscience is calmed;
Sold! And a weeping angel records the fatal choice.

No wonder Jesus said it would have been better for him if he had never been born.

Hypocrites are difficult to spot. When Jesus said, "One of you will betray me," the Bible says the disciples began to look—not at Judas, but at each other.
- Imagine, after three years of living with Judas, no one would have suspected him. How easy it is to hide behind religion and religious activity and never really be saved.

I hear people say, "I can't stand the church because of its hypocrites."
-Listen, let's put our excuses away. Until Jesus returns, the church will always be tainted with hypocrisy. Jesus said so. We should neither be surprised nor repelled by this. What we should do is examine our own hearts.
- If a hypocrite stands between you and Christ, then that person is closer to the Lord than you.

The other gospels tell us that ALL the disciples, including Judas, asked, "Is it me?" I believe Judas asked along with the others just to cover himself.
-Simon Peter really wanted to know who it was, so in John 13:24 he somehow caught John's eye and "waved" at John.

John was on our Lord's left and laid his head next to Jesus' heart, and Peter nodded to John or motioned to John or looked at John and said, "ASK Jesus who it is!"
- Without naming a name, Jesus said that it was the one to whom he would give the sop. Jesus dipped the bread in sop and gave it to Judas; then said to him softly, "What you intend to do, do quickly." And Judas goes to set the plan in motion.
Even when Judas leaves, the disciples don't put two and two together. They think Jesus must have sent him to get provisions since he has the purse.

III. His downfall

A. His sin deceived him—Matt. 27:3-4

The silver he once coveted and now possessed turned to embers in his hands. He tried to throw them off, but they seemed like a viper that had attached itself to him. Those who gave him the money taunted and mocked him... One day Satan will do the same to all those who go to hell for selling Jesus at any price.

B. His sin destroyed him—Matt. 27:5; Acts 1:18

Thirty pieces of silver

Thirty pieces of silver they gave for the Lord of life,
Thirty pieces of silver, just the price of a slave:
But that was the priestly value of the Holy One of God;
And they weighed him in the temple, the price of his precious blood.

Thirty pieces of silver placed in Iscariot's hand,
Thirty pieces of silver and the help of an armed gang;
Like a lamb led to the slaughter, the humble Son of God brings
At midnight from the garden where His sweat had been like blood.

Thirty pieces of silver burn on the traitor's brain,
Thirty pieces of silver - Oh, it's win from hell:
"I have sinned and betrayed the innocent," he cried, breathing deeply.
When he threw her into the temple and fell to the death of a madman.

C. His sin condemned him

What will Jesus say to Judas at the judgment?
- “Judas, why did you reject me? I have loved you. I tried to show you that I am the way. I was willing to die for your sins so that you could be forgiven. It didn't have to be this way, but you made your choice. This is what you have chosen for me to say: "Depart from me into everlasting torment and punishment. You will forever pay for your own sins.”

-What will you hear him say? He will either say, "Enter into the joy of your Lord, or leave me into everlasting fire and separation."

Love each other
Johannes 13:34-35

Before reading the passage:

A fairly demanding congregation in a county town was looking for a new pastor. The committee had asked a young minister if he would consider becoming their pastor. A time was set for him to come and preach to the congregation.
He decided to sneak into town unannounced and walk around town to see what kind of people were in town. While there, he went inside the church to see the outside of the church. As he stood in front of the church, a well-dressed, rather sophisticated lady approached him and began to speak to him. She asked if he was new in town and he said yes. Then she asked if he was thinking of coming to that church. He told her it was a good possibility. She then said, 'They only receive certain types of people there; People who know the scriptures.” She went on to ask if she could ask him a few questions, which she did. Then she asked, "How many commandments are there? He replied, "Eleven." With a high pitch, she began talking down to him, telling him that the smallest child in this church knew there were only TEN commandments.
For the next week the young minister stood in the pulpit and took his text from John 13:34-35.

Read the section

Jesus uses a small phrase that occurs no fewer than 55 times in the N.T. The little phrase is "each other".
- God desires UNITY among his people; not unity, but UNITY. He doesn't want us all to be the same, think the same, look the same, or serve the same. Therefore, He gives us different personalities, different abilities, and different spiritual gifts. But he wants unity and harmony among his children.

-Psalm 133:1

For example: We are commanded to fellowship with one another, to serve one another, to admonish one another, to pray for one another, to greet one another, to edify one another, and we could continue to do so.
- Love for one another was called the “badge” of the Christian. They would say of the first-century Christians, "See how they love one another!"

Understand that love is a VERB. Love is something you do, not just something you say.

Three things I want to share with you from these verses:

I. The commandment to love one another—John 13:34

Is it right that God commands us to love one another?
-Imagine a young man - perhaps somewhere on a Christian college campus - who sees a young lady and falls in love with her. But she doesn't care about him at all! So he goes to her and says, "I command you to love me!" Can a man do that to a young lady?

Of course not! How then can God command us to love one another?

We need to understand that Christian love is not an emotional feeling that we create. Christian love means we treat one another as God treats us.
-Christian love is not a matter of feeling, but a matter of will. "God loved so much... that he gave." God's love is not a sentimental feeling. God's love is expressed in actions. Christian love is an act of will: we want to treat one another as God treats us.

How does God treat us? God forgives us, so we forgive one another. God is kind to us, and so we should be kind to one another.

God receives us, and so we should receive one another. We willingly and intentionally treat one another as God treats us. That's what it means to love one another.
- The interesting thing is: the more consciously we want to love each other, the more feelings begin to change; and lo and behold, we learn to like each other.

Note that loving each other is not optional. It is not an elective in faith class. It's a requirement. It's not a hint where Jesus says things would be better if we loved one another, He's commanding us to love one another.

Jesus said this is a "new commandment."
-But in German. 6:5 Scripture says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.”
-In Lev. 19:18 we read that "you shall love your neighbor as yourself".
-So in what sense is it new? It's a higher standard of love. It is love based on the example of the Lord Jesus Himself. This standard of love is possible only because “the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given unto us” (Romans 5:5) and the fruit of the Spirit, which is love, is brought forth in us by the Holy Spirit. (Gal. 5:22).

Earlier Jesus told us to love our enemies. Now he tells us to walk in love as Christ loved us (Eph. 5:2), put on love (Col. 3:14), serve one another in love (Gal. 5:13), do all things love , speak the truth in love, be rich in love (1 Thess. 3:12).

II. The challenge of loving one another

A. Loving one another fulfills the law—Romans 13:8-10

As Christians, we do not obey the law out of outward fear; We obey the law out of inner love. It is not an external compulsion; it's compassion inside.
-If I love you, I won't try to kill you. If I love you, I will not bear false witness against you.
-Love takes us back to the Golden Rule. Love seeks the highest good of the beloved.

Love is an unpaid DEBT - Romans 13:8. Love is the only debt we can never fully repay. We are ambassadors of God's love. We can never say, "I have loved this person enough. I will stop loving now."
-Since we live in a fallen world, we are often surrounded by irritable, cranky, annoying, argumentative people. And on a good day!

- It seems that some people have the "spiritual gift of irritation". They know how to get under your skin and "get on our nerves"; and sometimes it's people we're married to!
-Paul says, "You can never give up on people who drive you crazy. You can never stop loving the mean people in your life. Keep loving her!”

Love does not harm others - Romans 13:10

Nothing is more damaging in relationships, especially in the family between husband and wife and parents and children, than a person with a bad temper or bad nature or a quarreling, bickering tongue. Crossword puzzles or words that put others down or speak badly of others never lead to anything good. A bossy, cantankerous, know-it-all spirit that always needs to be right or get its way is always destructive.
-Sometimes I hear someone who lives their life like an everyday bully saying, “Well, that's just my personality. I'm just speaking my mind!” Well stop it! Learn to be tactful! Let God's love flow through your life.

B. Love for one another proves that you belong with God. 1 John 4:7-12

C. We are taught of God to love one another - I Thess. 4:9-10

The words "brotherly love" mean "being born through rebirth from the same womb." For this reason, our love for one another should lead to tender affection, affection, and devotion to one another.
- The expression “taught by God” means that love is not taught but captured. Because we come from the bosom of God, we share in His fundamental maturity, which is love. Therefore, love should be the most natural thing that believers can express.
- Brotherly love is at the heart of our Christian faith.
- Nothing draws people to our church more than a loving, caring community that genuinely and deeply loves one another.

That is why Paul says: "Let brotherly love grow more and more". The word carries the idea of ​​love that lasts and lasts and lasts. It's like God's mercy that endures forever.

III. The qualities of love for one another.

This kind of love shows in:

A. It is unconditional expression
The Vietnam War was almost over. A young soldier called home when he reached New York. When his mother answered the phone, the boy told her he was safe and just wanted to let her know he'd made it back to the States. The boy said, "Mom, is it okay if I bring a friend home?" She said, "Of course." The boy said, "I have to tell you that he's missing his right leg... his left arm is." gone and his face is badly disfigured.” The mother said, “That's okay. He can come to visit anytime.” The boy said, “Mom, I want him to live with us forever.” The mother said, “But, son, we don't want someone like that to live with us.” That Phone was dead. After a few minutes the phone rang again. The caller was a police officer. He said: "I am sorry to inform you that your son has just killed himself. We don't know why he did such a thing. Maybe he didn't think he could face life with just one leg and one arm and his disfigured face."

The love Jesus speaks of is unconditional in its expression. Love respects no person, is without prejudice, accepts others, is kind and compassionate, shows courtesy and respect for one another, is soft-hearted and forgiving.

B. It is a selfless motive
Chad wasn't as smart as the other kids in his class. Sometimes the other children were unkind to him. Valentine's Day was just around the corner and Chad asked his mom if she would help him make Valentine's Day cards for every person in his class...35 in total. They worked hard on the cards...cut and glued each card. The next day, he took extra care to pack all 35 cards into his book package. The mother was afraid he wouldn't get many cards, so she made him some biscuits and had biscuits and milk wait for him when he got home from school. As he walked up the driveway, the mother noticed that he had no cards in his hand, but he was smiling. As he walked through the door, he said with a smile, "None... not one. Mom, I didn't miss a single one. I gave everyone a card!”

A bell isn't a bell until you ring it
A song isn't a song until you sing it
Love isn't love until you give it as a gift

Hebrews 13:1 "Let brotherly love endure."

A remedy for troubled hearts
Johannes 14:1-3

The medical profession continues to report that a majority of the illnesses treated are emotional in nature. Much of today's illness does not come from a germ or bacteria, but from an inner worry or struggle of our hearts or minds.
-Job 14:1 "A man who is born of a woman is few days old and full of difficulties."

Today we face an epidemic of difficulties. There are global problems and there are national problems and there are personal problems.
- Some of you today may be troubled and wondering if there is a cure. There are many things to worry about and many troubles enter our lives.
-Perhaps today you are troubled by the behavior of a loved one. You may be suffering from financial pressures, family problems, or problems with your physical health.

Don't think that because you are a Christian you won't have problems. We all face problems.
- It was true with the disciples of our Lord.

Let me emphasize four things from these verses:

I. Our Lord's appraisal – John 14:1

"Don't Let Your Heart Be Troubled" The word "troubled" means "excited, shaken, stressed, worried, or restless."

Jesus could read the hearts of his disciples, but I think the expression on their faces showed that they were troubled inside.
You see, Jesus had just dropped a big bombshell on his disciples. He just told them that one of them was a traitor and that he would be betrayed by one of their group (John 13:21). Jesus tells them that he will leave them and that they cannot go with him (John 13:33). Then he tells them that their leader Peter will deny him three times
(Johannes 13:37-38).
After these three bombs, Jesus sees that their hearts are troubled and begins to offer them arguments against a troubled heart, or a remedy for their troubled hearts, as we might call it.
- The bottom line was this: They needn't worry because He was there for them and after He left He would leave one like Himself to minister to them and to empower and comfort them.
- What a blessing to know that there is a divine person for me in my need! There have been times when just knowing he's there for me makes all the difference.

II. Our Lord's antidote - John 14:1

"You believe in God, believe in me too." But the eleven sitting around the table with Him had already believed. They had proved the reality of their faith by giving up everything for Christ's sake. But what is the Lord saying to you here?
- Once again he imposes the old teaching on them, the teaching with which they first began: “Believe! Believe more! Believe in Me! Believe in me personally!”

- Let us never forget that there are degrees in faith and that there is a big difference between weak and strong faith.
- The feeblest faith is sufficient to give a man a saving interest in Christ and should not be despised; but it will not give a man the same inner comfort that it gives to a man of strong faith. A man of weak faith has dim perception and does not see clearly what he believes and why he believes it.

A strong, deep faith in Christ is the surest remedy for a troubled heart.

Jesus gives comfort and encouragement to troubled hearts. Let me list what Jesus gave them as an antidote for troubled hearts: (1) He told them heaven was safe, (2) Christ
is the sure and only way to heaven, (3) when Christ departs, his work for them will never cease, (4) in the absence of Christ his disciples will have the presence and help of the Holy Spirit, (5) Christ will be not forsake the people forever, but will come again to receive them, (6) He will give them His peace to cheer and encourage them.

Keep believing in God and in me!

III. The assurance of our Lord - John 14:2

Jesus assures them that He will prepare heaven for them and for us and will bring us to heaven.

Newsweek recently conducted a poll in America and they said the poll found that 77% of people in America believe heaven really exists. Of the 77% who believe in heaven, 75% believed they would go there. What does that tell us? It tells us that most Americans believe that the road to heaven is broad and that almost anyone who takes a breath and has a heartbeat will eventually get there. But Jesus said the gate was small and the way narrow. Few will enter it. Frosted. 7:13-14

I started thinking about it. What would happen if people didn't believe in heaven? What would our culture be like if it didn't believe in heaven? What would happen if we believed that this life on earth is all there is? I came up with a few things that we might expect if people didn't believe in heaven.

1. Our culture would be obsessed with youth and trying to stay young.
We would spend millions of dollars to be young and stay young and look young. We would spend millions on physical fitness and plastic surgery, dieting and exercise machines. If we didn't believe in heaven, we'd do anything to stay young.

2.We would extend people's life and as long as possible.
We would develop life support systems for the elderly to prevent death because they would be afraid to venture into the unknown.

3. If death came, we would take very good care of the corpse.
We made sure our loved ones were buried in an airtight, watertight coffin with comfortable liners and installed background music. We might even freeze the corpse so we can bring it back if they find a cure for what killed them.

4. Crime would increase because there would be no accountability after death.

5. We would tell people they could have heaven on earth.

We are the first generation to not get things because we NEED them, but because we WANT them. We buy things we don't need with money we don't have to impress people we don't like! We always reach for more. A little better car, a little better house, a little better clothes to impress more and more people.

Someone said life is a merry-go-round without the merry-go-round.
-Why aren't we happy? Because we try to find happiness only in this life.

What happened to the days when people walked with God?

The truth is whether man believes in heaven or not does not change the truth about heaven. The Bible speaks of heaven five hundred and fifty-seven times.

Jesus said, "I go to prepare a place for you." Heaven is a prepared place and a peopled place and a perfect place and an everlasting place.

In heaven there will be redeemed and righteous and happy.

I have to tell you that not everyone will be in heaven. Heaven is a prepared place for prepared people.
- The moment you place your trust in Christ, your name is written in the reservation book called the Lamb's Book of Life.
- You don't have to worry about arriving late and losing your reservation. See, no one gets to heaven late or early. Your place is ready and waiting for you.

Heaven is called "my Father's house." Heaven is part of our inheritance in Christ. It is our blessing to be in God's family.
- The father's house speaks of family, of love, of community, of joy.

Heaven is a huge place and a sacred place and a beautiful place.
- Think of the beauty of this earth. Remember that what we see of this earth with its mountains, trees, rivers, lakes, animals and sky is in its fallen state. Imagine what it must have been like before sin came to earth! God created this place in six days. He has been preparing heaven for us for 2,000 years.

Jesus said, "In my Father's house there are many mansions, or many rooms."
What kind of rooms are there? Let me suggest a few:

1. I think there will be a Fellowship Hall.
Heaven will be a place of fellowship. And listen, we don't need an introduction. We will know everyone. It will be a time of reunion in the common hall of the Father's house. Think of all your loved ones who have passed before. I think the church hall will erupt with joy and laughter!

2. Let me suggest that there will be a kindergarten in the father's house.

There will be millions of babies in heaven.
-I heard a story from the days when fathers had to wait outside the delivery room for their baby to be born. Three men were waiting for the good news. The first man was informed by the nurse that his wife had twins. And he said to the nurse, "That's ironic. I'm performing for the Minnesota Twins.” A few minutes later, the second man learned that his wife had triplets. He said, "Isn't that something? I work for the 3M company.” The third man panicked and ran to the door. Someone stopped him and asked what happened? He said, "I work for a 7-11 store and I'm getting out of here!"

I understand, but I think the father's house will have a large children's room.
- "Preacher, do you think babies stay babies in heaven?" I don't know. There are good arguments on both sides of the problem. I know that our Lord makes all things well.
-But why not? When describing heaven, Jesus said, "Their is the kingdom of heaven." If children add so much to the joy of life in this world, why not in the world to come?

3. Let me suggest that heaven has a study.

I don't think we're just sitting on a fluffy white cloud wearing a halo and plucking a harp.
-There will be work for each of us. Revelation 22:3 says that "his servants shall serve him."

4.Then I think there will be a banquet hall or dining room.

I look forward to breaking bread and fellowshipping with Jesus. I think Baptists will give most people a head start in that regard.
"Preacher, how do you know we're going to eat in heaven?" Remember when Jesus ate the Passover meal with his disciples? He said, "I have longed to eat this Passover with you. For I tell you, I will eat no more of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” Then he said that he would drink of the fruit of the vine in his father's kingdom.

I could add more rooms, but I'm telling you, there's no provision for an infirmary. There will be no infirmary there. There will be no facility for a room of sorrow and sorrow. In heaven there will be no sickness, suffering, pain or death.

IV. Announcement of our Lord - John 14:3

Jesus will come back personally to pick us up, His bride, and take us to His Father's house.

Jesus is coming back to earth - what if it were today?
Coming In Power And Love To Reign - What If It Was Today?
Coming to claim his chosen bride, all redeemed and purified,
Scattered all over this earth - what if it was today?

Satan's reign will then be over - oh, that it were today!
Sorrow and sighing shall be no more - Oh, were it today!

Then the dead in Christ will rise, caught up to meet Him in the heavens;
When will these glories meet our eyes? What if it was today?

Faithful and faithful would he find us here if he came today?
Watch with joy and not fear if he should come today?
Signs of His coming multiply, morning light breaks in the eastern sky;
Watch out because the time is coming – what if it were today?

Glorious glorious! bring joy to my heart 'twill; Glorious glorious!
When we crown Him King, glory, glory! Hurry
prepare the way; Glory, glory, Jesus will come one day.

Is Jesus Christ the only way to heaven?
Johannes 14:1-6

Before reading the passage:

Last week I published the results of a poll conducted by Newsweek. The poll found that 77% of Americans said they believed in heaven, and of the 77% who believed in heaven, 75% believed they would go to heaven.
-I came across another poll last week that showed 92% of Americans believe in heaven and almost all were somewhat confident that they would be there.

What does that tell us? This tells us that most Americans believe that the road to heaven is broad and that almost anyone who takes a breath and has a heartbeat will eventually get there.

Is that true? When you read Jesus' words, it's obvious that he doesn't have the same confidence that Americans have on this subject.
-Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus describes the way to heaven as narrow and that FEW will be in heaven.
- In the light of what Jesus says, it behooves us to see clearly the narrow way to heaven.

Have you ever thought how awful it would be if God didn't provide a plan for our salvation?
- We would be doomed to spend a lifetime groping aimlessly in the dark. There would be absolutely no hope. What a horrible thing to live with the knowledge that with our last breath we would be bound hand and foot and thrown into the lake of fire with no hope of escape!

But in His grace and mercy, God made a way for our forgiveness of sins and salvation. And it's all in Jesus and only Jesus!
- True ministers of the gospel of Jesus Christ must watch and declare clearly that Jesus is the only way to salvation. There can be no compromises!

Read the section

Let me ask the question again: Is Jesus Christ the only way to heaven?

Most of us here already know the answer to this question and we are ready to give our answer: “Yes! Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven.”
- In our answer, we know that most people in the world would give a different answer. We know we believe in something that is not universally accepted and unpopular in many circles.

We also know that some who agree with our answer do not like to speak openly about it. They fear causing trouble, so they would rather not have discussed the issue publicly.
-We know that some people react negatively when we say that Jesus is the only way to heaven. Sometimes others get very angry with us and hurl bitter words at us like arrogant, bigoted, intolerant and narrow-minded. They might call us hatemongers, and no one likes being called names like that.

Others would try to ban us from saying publicly what we believe.

Jesus gave the mother of all politically incorrect and religiously incorrect statements.

- If what Jesus said is true, that means every other religion in the world is absolutely wrong! That one statement raises blood pressure and boils more people's blood than you can on any other subject.

There are more than 5 billion people living on planet earth who worship or worship more than 300 gods. Are we to believe that only Christians are right?

Hear! With that one statement, Jesus put Christianity in a class of its own. If the only way to God is through Jesus Christ, then Christianity is not compatible with any other religion.
- When words mean anything, Jesus says that He is the only way to be saved and the only way to the Father and the only way to heaven.
-I do not apologize when I say that Jesus Christ is not a good way to heaven. There is no better way to heaven. It's not even the best way to heaven. Jesus Christ is THE ONLY WAY to Heaven.

Three things Jesus says:

I. Jesus is the way - John 14:6

There are many paths or paths that a person can walk in this life.
1. The Bible says of King Amon in 2 Kings 21:22: "And he forsook the Lord, the God of his fathers, and walked not in the ways of the Lord."
2.Prov. 2:13 speaks of those who "walk in the ways of darkness."
3.Prov. 4:14 speaks of walking in the path of wicked and wicked people.
4. Isaiah 53:6
5.Prov. 14:12 "There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end are the ways of death."

The devil will say, "This is the way, walk with me." He leads you down the paths of drug culture, cults, pleasures and enticements.

- But Jesus came down from glory, was created in human form, was hung on the cross to take away our sins, rose again for our justification and says: “I and I alone am he

-I notice Tim. 2:5-6 Through his death and sacrifice on the cross, Jesus removed the barrier between us and the Father and reconciled us to God.
-Romans 5:1; 8:1; 2 Cor. 5:18-19

1. Jesus is the way out - out of the condemnation, bondage and misery of sin.

Jesus can deliver you from any sin that has enslaved you - drugs, alcohol, sexual immorality, bitterness, jealousy, lust, or unwillingness to forgive.

“His power can make you what you should be; his blood can purify your heart and set you free; His love can fill your soul and you will see, "It was best for him to walk his path with you."

2. Jesus is the way in - 2 Cor. 5:17

German 6:21-23 He takes US OUT of the land of sin and bondage and IN to a life of forgiveness and victory. He will take your life to a new level; to a new life when you surrender everything to him.

“Out of my sorrow, bondage, and night, Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into your freedom, your joy and your light, Jesus, I come to you.”

3. Jesus is the way through

We who have accepted Christ as Savior are not exempt from life's trials and tribulations, but we have the Lord to help us through them.
-PS. 23:4 "Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death..."
-Rome. 8:37 - "No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us."

Some by the water, some by the tide. Some by fire, but all by blood. Some by great sorrow, but God gives a song; He takes his dear children with him.”

4. Jesus is the way up

At the moment of death our soul goes to Jesus. "To be absent from this body is to be present with the Lord." Death is the gateway into the presence of God.

II. Jesus is the truth - John 14:6

Satan is the father of lies.

-Romans 1:25 says that man has exchanged the truth of God for a lie.
- But the Bible says that God cannot lie.

When a man teaches moral truth, his character makes all the difference in the world. Moral truth cannot be conveyed only in words. It must be conveyed by example.

How can a selfish person really teach the value of generosity? How can an adulterer teach the need for purity? How can a selfish person teach the beauty of humility? A bitter person cannot teach forgiveness and love effectively.
-No teacher has ever fully embodied the truth he taught except Jesus.
- Many can say: "I have taught you the truth." Only Jesus could say: "I am the truth."

III. Jesus is the life - John 14:6

Jesus is "the life" for all who repent and believe in him alone for salvation. He alone frees us from death.

Without Christ, people are dead in trespasses and sins. But John 5:24 says he who believes in the Son has eternal life.”
-Johannes 10:10; 11:25
-Jesus is the source and author of life.
-I John 5:12 "Whoever has the Son has life."

Jesus said: I am the way, without me there is no way
I am the truth, without me there is no knowledge
I am life, without me there is no growth.

Jesus is the way to God, the truth from God and the life from God.

Someone said you're either on your way or on your way; in the way of others who must find the way.

power for the ministry
Johannes 14:12-27

We need to remember that everything written in John 14 is meant to comfort our Lord's disciples.
- He has told them that He is leaving them and where He is going, they cannot follow Him - now. They would follow him later. They would be with Him - later. But he has to leave her for now.

The disciples felt their ministries were over since Christ left. Now he amazes them by saying that the works he does they will do AND greater works.

He will share with his disciples four sources of power that he will give them to achieve what he wants them to do after he has left them.

Before doing so, he wants his disciples to know how intimate and mysterious the connection between God the Father and God the Son is.
-Christ is true God of true God. Christ is equal to the Father in all things. Christ is one with the Father.
1 John 14:7 "If you had known me, you should have known the Father."
2 John 14:9 "He who has seen me has seen the Father."
3 John 14:10 "I am in the Father, and the Father is in me."
4 John 14:10 "The Father who dwells in me does the works."
5 John 14:11 "Believe me, I am in the Father and the Father is in me."

Jesus is dependent on the Father just as we are dependent on the Son through the Holy Spirit.

Jesus offers his disciples four things that comfort their hearts.

I. Power - John 14:12

Jesus begins with the words "Verily, verily" or "Verily, verily". Our Lord said, "Now take this message." He's about to tell you something that will blow your mind.

Here is what Jesus promises: Power! “If you believe in me, you will do the works that I do; AND Greater works than these thou shalt do; because I'm going to my father's."

That's the promise, but when we think about it, the promise seems unrealistic, if not impossible.
- Remember: Jesus had healed the sick, calmed the troubled sea, fed thousands with a few loaves of bread and fish, raised the dead. These are great works! How could Jesus have said what he said?

This verse is often used as proof text for those who claim to work miracles in our day.
-Nevertheless, I believe that Jesus speaks of greater miracles in importance, scope and quantity.

● Spiritual miracles are more important than physical miracles because physical miracles are temporary.
● Christians have a greater message to deliver today. Not only do we have the O.T., we have it
the Gospels, the Epistles, Acts and Revelation.
● The Lord has never preached outside of Israel. The whole world is at our disposal.
● Christians have been empowered for greater works because the Holy Spirit works through the believer. On the day of Pentecost, 3,000 were saved.
● We can also do greater works because our Lord intercedes for us. Hebrews 7:25
● Our work is his work when he initiates the work and when the work is done to his honor.
Isn't it our sweet, wonderful Lord to encourage and comfort us, saying, "I want you to do greater works than I do"?
II. Prayer - John 14:13-14

The "Name it andclaim it" boys grossly misused this verse. This isn't a blanket promise to get whatever we want. God is too wise to answer such prayers.

Notice what Jesus said, "And all that ye shall ask IN MY NAME"
- Praying in the name of Jesus is more than a formula that we add to the end of our prayers. We are so used to hearing "In the name of Jesus, Amen" that we feel uncomfortable not hearing it when someone is praying. We even suspect that the prayer is somewhat "illegal" because it doesn't end with "in Jesus' name, amen."
-Here's a bit of biblical odds and ends that might surprise you. Go back and read all the prayers in the N.T. Not one ends with the phrase "In the name of Jesus, Amen". Yet these prayers were offered according to the promise to ask in Jesus' name.

Some consider the phrase to be a kind of spiritual abracadabra or open sesame, or the Christian equivalent of rubbing Aladdin's lamp. There's nothing magical about that.

Names in the Bible often represent a person's character or authority or reputation.
-Praying in the name of Jesus is like subscribing his name to our prayers. In a way we are saying to God, "Jesus told me to pray this prayer." What do you think the father will do with a prayer that is actually signed by his son? He will grant it because He always honors what His Son wants.
-Let's turn this truth around. Sometimes people spoof other people's names. Many of our prayers are spiritual counterfeits because we sign the name of Jesus on prayers that he did not authorize.

When we pray in Jesus' name, we confess our belief that Jesus is the only way to God.
- Only through what Jesus accomplished can each of us come into the presence of God. Approaching God apart from Jesus Christ means guaranteeing that we will turn away.

When we pray in Jesus name we submit our will to his will because he knows what is best. This is what Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Here are the things that are important in prayer. The prayer must be said in the name of Jesus, it must be offered in the right spirit, it must be for the glory of God, and there must be no unrepentant sin in our lives that would block our prayer.

III. Promise—John 14:15-18, 25-26

The word "other" means "another of the same kind". The Comforter would be of the same kind as Jesus.

-He would be divine too. He would take Christ's place on earth while being at the right hand of God the Father.

The word for the Holy Spirit is "Paraclete". It is the same root word from which we get our English word parallel.
- When you think of two parallel lines, you think of two lines that run side by side and never diverge. Jesus said the Holy Spirit will be WITH you and IN you. The word Paraclete carries the idea of ​​advice, admonition, comfort, strengthening, intercession and encouragement.
-He is also our advocate, our counselor, our coach, our helper, our supporter, our defender, our teacher.

We should treat the Holy Spirit as we would treat Jesus. We are the temple; the house of the Holy Spirit. We should never grieve Him or quench Him.

He seals us and places us in the body of Christ. What a wonderful gift to see us through until Jesus comes to take us.

IV. Peace - John 14:27

Peace or Shalom was the common greeting among the Jews. It expressed the desire for wholeness, completeness, well-being.
-Peace is an inner stillness.

1. Peace is the deep awareness of God's faithfulness and providence.
2. Peace is the stillness of mind when confronted with danger or opposition.
3. Peace is the awareness of God's forgiveness of our sins.
4. Peace is the certainty of Heaven while staring death in the face.
5. Peace is the constant knowledge that we are born again.
6. Peace is the joy of knowing that we have been adopted into God's family and are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.
It is not only peace WITH God that Jesus gives, but also peace from God.

Isaiah 26:3

How to become a fruitful Christian
Johannes 15:1-11

Before reading the passage

I want to remind you that all of the events in John 13-17 all take place just 24 hours before Jesus died on the cross.
-John 14 deals with our hope in heaven; John 15 deals with our help on earth.
- The last sentence of John 14 is: “Get up and let us go from here.” Jesus and the disciples left the Upper Room, made their way through the city of Jerusalem and made their way to the Garden of Gethsemane via the Kidron Valley. So it appears that John 15 was actually given to the disciples as they were on their way from the Upper Room to the Garden of Gethsemane.
- It was Passover time and the month of April, they would have traveled at full moon. Something made Jesus talk to the disciples about branches, husbandmen, and fruit. Perhaps in the distance they saw the magnificent temple building with its massive doors decorated with vines; or perhaps they passed through the Golden Gate, which was also carved with magnificent tendrils; or in April the vines would begin to flower with the promise of a fresh harvest.
-Jesus may have taken the branches of a vine in his hands and explained to them: “As these branches are united or united in the vine, so are you united or united in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. As these branches remain in the vine; only so shall you abide in me.” Then He holds the grapes in His hand and says, “These branches bear fruit because they are joined to the vine. If they were not connected, they could not bear fruit. Likewise, you will not be able to bear fruit without Me. In fact, you can't do anything without me."

As you go through these verses, remember that this passage is for believers only.

Read the section:

This is the seventh "I am" statement of our Lord in the Gospel of John. He said: “I am the bread of life; The Light of the World; the door of the sheep. The Good Shepherd; the resurrection and life; the way, the truth, the life.”
-Here Jesus adds a word that is not included in the other “I am” statements. He says, "I am the TRUE vine." Why did he add the word "true"? For the vine was both the historical and religious symbol of Israel.
-The OT Presents Israel as God's Vine, but Israel proved to be a fruitless, unfaithful Vine. The whole OT We see Israel's faithless rejection of God's gracious, tender care.
● PS. 80:8-10a, 14-16a; Jer. 2:21; Is a. 5:1-5, 7a
● God intended Israel to bring forth the Messiah and for the nation to follow Him and for Israel to be an example to all other nations and show the way to the Messiah to live a pure and holy life. But Israel has not lived up to their expectations and never achieved their goal.
● Jesus is the TRUE VINE. He will accomplish everything that God intended for his Messiah. He will restore Israel.
● Jesus knew that his disciples would soon be thrown out of temple worship, expelled from the synagogue, and ostracized by the traditions of Judaism. I believe Jesus is saying, “I am the true vine. Do not be fooled. It's not Judaism. It's not a religion. It's me!"

I. The message of Jesus - John 15:1-2

It is important that we understand three terms:

A. It's coming

Jesus himself is the vine. He is the source of life. He is the juice of life. he is life Without him there would be no branches, no fruit and no vineyard.
- The very first thing we must learn is that without Him we have no life. And once we're IN Him, the life we ​​have is really His life flowing through us. We never stop receiving our life from Him.
● Phil. 1:21; Gal. 2:20

B. The branches

Branches speaks of true believers. Branches are actually extensions of the vine. There is no fixed line that says, "The vine ends here and the branch begins there."
- For this reason, Jesus could not have chosen a better example of the intimate bond he desires between himself and his followers. He wants us to identify with him so closely that others cannot tell where he ends and where we begin.
-This implies that we constantly feel that we need him.

C. The vinedresser or vinedresser

The father is the vinedresser who takes care of the vineyard. He watches over her, keeps her clean, and does whatever is necessary for her to bear much fruit.

II. The challenge of Jesus - John 15:4-5

Three things Jesus asked his disciples to do:

A. Abide in Him

Ten times in eleven verses Jesus uses the word abide.
-The main theme is staying; Bear no fruit! Remain!
-What does it mean to abide in Christ? The word "abide" comes from the Greek word "meno" and means "to settle down and be at home; stay with someone Spending time with someone to really get to know them deeply and personally.”
- We are to get as close to the Lord Jesus as we can; to become one with him; to become an extension of Him.
-We must be at home with Jesus; keep in touch with Jesus; to keep in touch with Jesus.

How do we do that? through his word. through prayer. Through worship.
-Well, minister, I want to be close to Jesus, but if remaining in Him means reading His Word daily, praying, and being faithful in worship, I just don't have the time.”
- A man went to the doctor and told him he needed a good physical exam. He said, "Doc, my energy level is so low that I don't want to do anything anymore." The doctor examined him and ran some tests.

The man came back the next week to get the results of the test and the man said, “Doctor, tell me directly. I can take it, but not a big medical term. Just tell me in plain language why I don't want to do anything more." The doctor said, "All right, here it is clear and in plain English. You don't want to do anything anymore because you're lazy!” Do you know why many Christians don't have time to abide in Christ? You are mentally lazy. They don't want to discipline themselves in the things of God.
- I don't know how close you are to Jesus, but I know you are as close as you want to be.

How many times have you heard someone say, "If you're going to get ahead in this old world, you need to have the right connections"? If you want to mean something to the Lord, you also need to have the right connections!

B. Bear fruit

John 15:2 mentions "no fruit," "fruit," and "more fruit"; John 15:5 speaks of "much fruit."
-Many Christians bear fruit - bearing more complicated and difficult than it really is. Some have struggled and labored and tried and served, and they are discouraged at their lack of fruitfulness and resentful of others who are fruitful.
-Have you ever seen a fruit tree or vine struggling to produce fruit? Now how do you bear fruit? By staying.

Although the branch BEARS fruit, it does not produce the fruit. The branches of the vine simply remain in the vine and remain connected to the vine. Permanent. Consequent. Day after week after month after year. They simply rest in their connected position, allowing the vine's juice to flow freely through them. You don't exert your own effort. The fruit that the branch bears is actually produced by the life-giving sap within.
- Bearing fruit means abiding in Christ and remaining so fully connected to him that the "sap of the Holy Spirit" flows through every part of our being. The fruit we bear is actually brought forth by His Spirit within you without your own conscious effort.
- If you and I want to be fruitful, we don't focus on fruiting, we focus on our personal relationship and fellowship with our Lord Jesus.

What is the fruit our Lord wants us to bear?
1 Rom. 1:13 - Winning souls
2 Rom. 6:22 - The fruit of holiness
3. Rom. 15:26-28 - Financial giving
4 Col. 1:10—Every good work
5 Hebrews 13:15 – Thanking and praising God with our lips.
6th Gal. 5:22-23 - The ultimate and most important fruit is love.

C. Abide in your abode - John 15:16a
That your fruit is real and accompanies you to glory.

III. The caution of Jesus

A. John 15:5 Without Him we can do nothing. We think we can do something. That's our opinion. However, He says that we can do nothing of eternal value. Nothing is a zero with a chipped edge.

B. John 15:11 If we don't stay, we will lose our joy.

Ron Dunn recounts a speech at a Valentine's banquet. The pastor had told him that there was a couple in the church who were struggling. As they sat at the table, a man told jokes before he was supposed to speak. They were stale jokes but everyone was laughing and enjoying themselves except for a couple. Ron leaned over to the pastor and said, "I can show you the couple that's giving you trouble." When he pointed it out, the pastor said, "How did you know?"

(Video) Celebs Who Got Fired From the Industry

IV. The contract (promise) of Jesus - John 15:13

Most of the time, these verses are interpreted like this: If you are bearing fruit and things are going well, watch out, because Jesus is walking with the hedge trimmer in his hand. When you hear this interpretation, you expect to be bloody and bruised when you bear fruit and fear that Jesus is after you with His scissors to circumcise you. It makes you think, “Lord, I don't want to bear any more fruit. Please leave me alone!"
- I believe that such a teaching is a complete misunderstanding of this passage.

The word "take away" is "airo" and has four definitions, meaning lift, raise, or pull up. Yes, the fourth is "take away," but that's not the contextual meaning here. It does not fit.
The meaning here is "elevate".

The word "purge" refers to a cleaning process. Put these two together and you understand what Jesus is really saying. It's not terrorizing; it is great! It is wonderful.
- He says: “Every branch in me that does not bear fruit, I lift up. And every branch that bears fruit I cleanse so that it may bear more fruit.”

You see, in vineyards it is not uncommon for branches to become so heavy with fruit that they sink to the ground; They are vulnerable to the mud of the rainy season. Seeing this, the vinedresser picks up the muddy branch and washes away the mud - lovingly, carefully, tenderly.
- The picture does not show Jesus cutting you off, but lifting you up; not of cutting you, but of cleansing you.

Note John 15:6 Does this mean that if we don't abide in Jesus, we will be cut off and thrown into the fire?
-If we do not abide in Him, the fruitful part of our life will burn, but not our position, for our salvation is assured by what Jesus did on the cross.

You say, "I don't care about lingering or bearing fruit. Just let me go into Pearly Gate and close the gate.”
-They care. Believe me!
- For those who abide in him, their prayers will be answered (John 15:7), they will glorify the Father (John 15:8), and they will have joy to the uttermost (John 15:11).

Jesus: The best friend we can ever have
Johannes 15:12-17

Before reading the passage:

When we get to John 15, Jesus is only a few hours away from being crucified. He has already spent time with His disciples in the Upper Room, teaching them and giving them instructions to follow.
- Now they leave the Upper Room and go to the Garden of Gethsemane where Judas points to him and betrays him with a kiss and he is arrested.
- In these verses, which we are about to read, Jesus gives his disciples further instructions.

Read the section

Jesus IS the best friend we can ever have!
-We all need friends! True friends! what is a true friend The Bible gives us the ultimate truth about friends - Prov. 18:24

Webster defines "friend" as "preferred companion".
- The statement is true: You and I make many acquaintances as we go through this life, but very few true and genuine friends.
- Aristotle was once asked: "What is a friend?" He answered: "A single soul dwelling in two bodies."
- The Lord has blessed my life by allowing me to enjoy the friendship of some very special people; Many of them are sitting in this very room.

But there is one friend who is more special than anyone I have ever met in this life. His name is Jesus and I don't call Him my friend but He calls me His.
- Think about it for a minute. If the President (or Bill Gates) should call me his friend, he's raised me to his level. However, if I presume to call him my friend, I have by no means exalted him, I have brought him down somewhat.
- It's one thing for me to sing "What A Friend I Have in Jesus". It is something completely different when Jesus says that he has a friend in me. There is a big difference between the two!
- When Jesus calls us His friend, it gives us the highest possible honor that a Lord like Him, who is so infinitely superior to us, deigns to make friends with us.
- There can be no friendship if everything is on one side. Friendship is a two-way thing. One heart must be like the other heart, otherwise there is no friendship.
- Jesus and I are friends because we love each other. Two friends appreciate each other.

“My Jesus, I love you; I know that you are mine;
For you I give up all the follies of sin.”

Though we have not seen Him with our physical eyes, by faith we have seen Him with the eyes of our soul, which are far better, and while we have seen Him, our soul rejoices in the splendor of His beauty!

Friends not only have a mutual love for each other, but friends must have a harmony
-What Jesus loves, we love; What Jesus hates, we hate; What Jesus seeks, we seek; What Jesus avoids, we avoid. This is true when there is only one heart in two bodies.

Christ's goal is the glory of his Father. That should also be our goal.
- His focus is to seek and rescue the lost. That should also be our focus.
-Jesus loves truth, holiness, justice and harmony. We must love the same things.

Several times God designated certain friends as His:
● Ex. 33:11 - "The Lord spoke to Moses face to face as a man speaks to his friend."
● James 2:23 - Abraham is called the friend of God.
● Isaiah 41:8—Abraham's descendants, the believers of Israel, are called friends of God.
● John 11:11—Lazarus is called friend by Jesus.
● John 15 – Jesus calls his disciples “friend”.
● Matt. 26:50 - Judas leads an army to arrest Jesus, and the Lord calls Judas "friend."

may i tell you Jesus is the friend of the sinner!

Three things I want to share with you. The friendship of our Lord is shown in:

I. His sacrifice – John 15:13

Friends sacrifice for one another, and none sacrificed more than Jesus.

A. His sacrifice was voluntary

The statement "lay down his life" indicates a voluntary act. No one forced Jesus to lie down
His life. He could have called thousands of angels to save Him and they would have rejoiced!
-No one took their life against their will. He voluntarily gave his life on the cross.

B. His sacrifice was vicarious

The word "substitute" means "to become a substitute for, or to take the place of, another, either in benefit or in suffering."
-Jesus gave his life for his friends. His death on the cross was not for himself but for his friends. Friend, Jesus died for you and me so we wouldn't have to go to hell.

C. His victim was malicious

We will never know how much Jesus suffered, but a few verses make it clear that he paid a terribly high price when he died for us.
● Matt. 26:47-56 He was betrayed by Judas and abandoned by his disciples.
● Luke 22:63-64 He was beaten by the temple guards.
● Matt. 27:26 He was scourged until he could see some of his own bones.
● Matt. 27:26-29 He was mocked by the soldiers and crowned with thorns.

● Isaiah 50:6 His beard was plucked from his face.
● Matt. 27:35 He was nailed to the cross and hung up to die.
● Isa. 50:14 He was incredibly disfigured. He did all this for you and me.

D. His sacrifice was victorious

Those who saw Jesus' death on the cross exclaimed, "What a tragedy!" But His death is considered one of the most glorious days in human history!
-He knew that in His death He had fulfilled the righteous requirements of a saint of God concerning the atonement for sin.
-Is a. 53:10-12 The fact that God was perfectly satisfied with His atonement for our sin was proved three days later when Jesus rose from the dead. Frosted. 28:1-6

II. His sharing - John 15:14-15

These verses tell us that Jesus shared some special gifts with us:

A. He shares His love

The truth of God's love fills the pages of God's Word. Jer. 31:3 calls his love "eternal love."
-His love motivated him to go to the cross (Romans 5:8) and his love is so powerful that nothing can separate us from his love. Romans 8:38-39
-Prov. 17:17 "A friend always loves."

Rome. 5:5 When we are born again, God pours his love into our hearts so that we can love one another, our brothers and sisters in Christ. John 13:34-35; John 15:12, 19

How believers treat each other is critical. Division will destroy a community of believers faster than anything else.
- Nothing cuts the heart of Jesus more than self-centeredness and divisive behavior.

Being a “friend” of Jesus is conditional. The verses give us the guide to friendship with Jesus.

-We are friends of Jesus, but Jesus must be first. We have a personal obligation to do WHATEVER He commands us to do. The verb refers to continuous, consistent obedience; do not hit and fail to obey.

B. He shares his life

Not only did Jesus give His life FOR US, He also gives His life to us every day.
- He gives us a heart to live for Him!

C. He shares his lessons - John 15:15

He will not withhold the truth from his friends, but will teach them all about the Father. He shares with us the deepest secrets of divine truth and holds nothing back from his friends!

III. His redemption - John 15:16

Sinners are dead in trespasses and sins. God calls us in grace.
- He gives the sinner an inward awareness of his sins and the knowledge that Jesus Christ is the sinner's only hope.

He gives us wonderful promises that our lives will bear fruit and that our fruit will remain, and if we ask for anything in the Father's name, He will give.

The song says, "What a precious friend he is!"

“I trust in his promises.
He takes care of all my needs.
He will be there when I die.
What a precious friend he is!

He will walk with me through the valleys.
He will be with me all the way...every day.
Redeemer, help me to believe in you.
Oh what a precious friend he is!”

Warning: prepare for the pursuit
Johannes 15:17-25; Johannes 16:1-4

Persecution is one of those words we don't want to think about.
- In our eyes, persecution is often something that happens in China or Russia or in the primitive areas of Africa.
- It is true that persecution does take place in these areas, but even here persecution takes place in a variety of forms.
-Sometimes it is the attitude of the media that tries to discredit the Christian message and the messengers. In other cases, Christians are imprisoned, punished, or even killed for speaking publicly for Christ.

While we may not see Christians being killed for their beliefs in our country, there is constant opposition to Christians in the world.
- Christians are made to look like we are backward, ignorant, superficial and uninformed. Those who stand up for the truth of God's Word are insulted, lied to and even called hatemongers.
-Christians are often abused in work environments because of their faith. Some are overlooked in promotions. I could go on and on but I think you get the picture.

Our Lord warned us of persecution lest it surprise or surprise us.
-2 Teams. 3:12; 1 Peter 4:12-13

Notice John 16:1, "These things I said to you that you might not be offended...made to stumble...made to forsake or distrust him whom you ought to obey."
- The Lord did not want us to be unprepared, surprised, or shocked when persecution comes and we are tempted to give up the Lord's service.


I. Expectations

Jesus tells us what we as Christians can expect from the world or the world system that is ruled and controlled by Satan.

A. We can expect to be hated by the world—John 15:18

The word "hate" means to be despised, despised, and looked upon with contempt. It is an active hostility that shows in attitude towards others and shows itself in words and actions.

B. We can expect to be persecuted—John 15:20

The word "persecuted" means to be persecuted, mistreated, and harassed. It means harm, being cruel, doing evil. It can be done behind his back or to his face.

C. We can expect to be ostracized - John 16:2a

The word "excluded" means to be excluded or rejected by a group, to refuse acceptance, to be isolated from society.
- The synagogue was everything for the Jewish people. All social, economic and religious life surrounded the life of the synagogue.
-If you were kicked out of the synagogue, you could lose your job; you became a moral outlaw; They were considered the scum of the earth. The threat of expulsion from the synagogue caused great anxiety.

D. We can expect the possibility of death - John 16:2b

Some, like Saul, who consented to the stoning of Stephen, believed that when they killed a Christian they were doing a service to God, or it was like a sacrifice to the Lord.

II. The Declaration

Why are Christians persecuted?

A. Because Christians are not of this world - John 15:18-19

Satan is "the prince of the power of the air" (Eph. 2:2). Satan runs the wicked system of the world. His goal is to fight against Christ and God.
- The Christian is in direct opposition to Satan. The Christian loves justice and hates injustice. Our life is a rebuke from Satan. We are a condemnation for the evil works or Satan and he hates us for it.
-1 Johannes 3:12

God has called Christians to live apart from the wicked world system.
-2 Cor. 6:17; Phil. 2:15

B. Because the world hates Christ—John 15:18

Why would anyone hate Jesus Christ? He always treated others with kindness and love. He went about doing good - healing the sick, relieving human misery, showing mercy. How can anyone hate a person like Jesus?
-They hated Jesus because he faced their sin. He showed them how they were: how sinful they were. Men don't like to be confronted with their sin.

Does the world still hate Jesus and his followers? Just try putting up a nativity scene on public land, or singing Christmas carols containing the name of Jesus in schools, or praying and reading the Bible in schools. Even now, a judge is trying to remove the words "In God We Trust" from all our currencies.

The world hates us because it hates Christ, whom we represent.
- hatred cannot be stored for long; it needs to be vented. The world has always hated Christ and now that he is gone they unleash their hatred on those who represent him. We get the brunt of the hate that is ultimately directed at Christ. Let me assure you that hatred is as real in the world today as it was 2,000 years ago.
- Note John 15:19-20. A good example would be Stephen, the first martyr.

At the end of John 15:20 there is a little word of encouragement for the believer: "If they keep my word, they will keep yours also." That means not all will hate, not all will persecute. Some will receive, some will believe, some will listen and respond as they did with Jesus.
- The church need never expect to win the masses of people for Christ; Jesus didn't do it, but some will!

C. Because the world does not know God - John 15:21-25

The most difficult fact for the Jews to accept was that they did not really know God. They thought they did, but they didn't.
-Imagine the anger the Jewish leaders felt when Jesus said they didn't really know God. They took pride in their knowledge of God.

Man is born into the world as an enemy of God. He is indifferent, rebellious and hateful towards God. People don't know God, let alone love him. And being religious doesn't mean knowing God either.

Someone might say, "It's not my fault that I don't know God. I was born without knowing God, so you can't blame me for that."
-Everyone is responsible. Every human being comes into this world with the basic knowledge that God exists. God is also revealed from creation onwards and the law of God is written on their hearts, their conscience also testifying "that they may be without excuse".

So how did man come to not knowing God?
-Rom. 1:21,28

D. Because they willfully and willfully reject Christ—John 15:22

This is one of the most important verses in the book of John. Jesus is not talking about sin in general. He speaks of the sin of willful rejection in the face of total revelation.
-Jesus said that the cloak of their hypocrisy will be torn off. You cannot hide your sin of willful rejection from God. It is obvious to Him because you despise Him.
- The greatest sin a man can commit is to reject God in the face of the full revelation of Him.

In John 15:25 Jesus says they hate him for no reason.
-Jesus had spoken enough words and done enough deeds to hold them responsible for their unbelief. They continued to hate Jesus for no other reason than their own sin.
- The world hated Jesus because he exposed their sin. He showed them who they were and they didn't like it.

III. The exception

Both Jesus and Paul tell us that if we are a follower of Jesus, we will experience persecution. But you say, “Well, I've never experienced persecution. In fact, I get along well in this world.”

The truth is that the average Christian does so little to deserve the antagonism of the world.

Why should the world care about the average church member when they are so like the world and do nothing to offend the world?
- Many so-called Christians do everything they can to hide the fact that they are followers of the Lord. They go the same places, do the same things, speak the same way as the world. When anyone in the world takes the name of the Lord in vain, we pretend not to hear him and make no effort to rebuke him or speak a word for our Lord. If the group suggests doing something shady or immoral, there is nothing to discourage the action. We just go with the group. So why should the world hate this kind of Christianity?

A young man who was briefly rescued was assigned to work at a logging camp for the summer. The people in the church warned him that the men in the camp were pretty rough men. They were bad at swearing and drinking and gambling and going into town looking for immoral women. They told him that he had to be strong in his faith. At the end of the summer he came back to his hometown and his church and they asked him how it was going. He said: "Everything went great! Nobody even suspected that I was a Christian.”

The world likes "Christians" who are who they are. Those who are hated are those who are sold to the Lord. Someone said the problem with most modern Christians is that no one wants to kill them anymore.
- That doesn't mean people want to kill them because they're so hard to get along with, but because they're so Christlike.

IV. The Admonition

How do we respond when we are truly living as Christ and are being persecuted?

Remember that the world has a very keen eye for the inconsistencies and mistakes of professing Christians.

Meet their antagonism by not dropping your standard an inch. When you start lowering your standards, where will you stop? How far are you willing to lower your standards?
- Don't try to placate the world by compromising your standards. Meet hostility with patient Christlike love and sympathy.

1 Peter 2:19-24 The word "example" in 1 Peter 2:21 means a copy. Jesus laid down a pattern of suffering for Christians to follow as they face the world.
-Jesus never had retribution for the suffering he suffered; He took it voluntarily. Not only did He suffer on the Cross to take away our sin, but He suffered to give us a pattern to face the world. When the world abuses us, we should take it in silence and count ourselves worthy of suffering like Jesus. Don't be surprised if you suffer; our Lord did, and his servants are not exempt from the same treatment.

do you belong to jesus If so, there will be persecution. Be strong in the Lord. Don't compromise. Don't lower your standards. Love him with all my heart!

The Crisis of Conviction in the Lives of the Lost
Johannes 16:7-14

Before reading the passage:

We have come to the eve of our Lord's crucifixion. It is 10:30 or 11:00 p.m. on Thursday evening.
- Judas has already snuck out of the upper room and the Last Supper to go to the religious leaders to collect his thirty pieces of silver for betraying the Lord.
- All the actors have taken their places. In a few minutes Jesus will go to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. A few minutes later Judas will kiss Jesus on the cheek and start the whole cycle of events leading up to the crucifixion.
- These words of our Lord from John 16 belong to the last words to his disciples. This gives them double meaning. These are the last instructions of the Son of God before he goes to the cross.

Read the section

Notice John 16:7 again—“I tell you the truth.”
- Why should Jesus remind them that he is telling the truth? He always tells the truth. More than that, He is the Truth!
- He tells them because it's hard to swallow something that someone tells you you think it's bad when they say it's good for you. And that's what Jesus does.

"It is advisable (best, of your benefit, to your advantage) for you that I go away."
- How could that be true? What could be better than the physical presence of the Son of God?
- I'm sure if we were to vote and ask, "Would you rather have the Holy Spirit within you or have Jesus sit next to you?" we would all be voting to have Jesus the Son of God right here so that we could have Him see and talk to him. That is understandable.
- But Jesus said, "No, it is better for you if I go, because if I don't go, I cannot send the Holy Spirit to you."

Why was it better for Jesus to go so He could send the Holy Spirit?
(1) If Jesus had stayed with the disciples, he could not have died on the cross and been buried and risen on the third day, and if he had not died for our sins and if he had not risen for our justification, he could the price didn't pay for our sins and didn't become our only savior. That would mean that we would all be in our sin with no hope of forgiveness and salvation.

(2) He had to die on the cross and rise again to defeat the power of Satan and death. Jesus defeated Satan on the cross and gained victory over Satan, death, the grave and hell.

(3) Now we have in heaven One seated at the right hand of the throne of God, interceding for us, touched by the feelings of our weaknesses, because He is touched by the feelings of our weaknesses, because He was tempted in all points so as we are, but without sin.

(4) If He had not gone away, He could only have been in one place at a time. Now the Holy Spirit is with and in every believer in every place.

Now Jesus is telling his disciples that one of the main ministries - jobs - of the Holy Spirit - is to bring sinful man the conviction of sin.

The word correct (KJV) means both to condemn and to convince a person.

We often use the term "be convinced". What does that mean?
- Did you know that a lost man will never be saved until he is convinced of his lostness and sinfulness?
- That's why we say, "You can't save a man until you lose him." If he never sees that he needs to be saved, he will never want to be saved.

What does it mean to have a criminal record?
Under the Shadow of the Broad Brim is the life story of the great preacher Charles Spurgeon. Spurgeon grew up in a Puritan background, with a Puritan preacher father and grandfather. Even as a small child he was taught the way of God. By the age of six he was reading Pilgrim's Progress and theological books. But it wasn't until he was sixteen that there was a personal crisis of conviction that preceded his salvation. At the age of sixteen came what Spurgeon called "a burdened soul." He became terribly concerned about the fact that he was a sinner. There was an awareness that he was lost and under the condemnation of God's judgment. Wanting to settle the matter, he made his way to a large, well-known church on a cold winter Sunday, but it was so cold that he couldn't make it there. Instead, he found a small chapel and slipped in through the back door. The weather was so bad that the pastor could not come, but a layman got up to speak. Spurgeon sat in the back, but the man could tell he was worried. The man looked at Spurgeon and said, "Young man, your mind is troubled. Look to Jesus, and live.” That's all he said… “Look to Jesus, and live.” And Spurgeon's testimony was that in that day his burden was lifted from him and his soul was saved.
- The truth is that every saved person can tell the same story. Oh, the details will be different, but for every person who was saved, there was that moment of personal crisis of belief when you were brought to the realization that you were a lost sinner and needed saving.

I want you to see three things:

I. The coercive nature of conviction - John 16:8

A. Belief is an awakening experience

It is the work of the Holy Spirit to convict and persuade.
- This is a Greek word that comes from the drama of a court case.
It's a word that refers to what the prosecutor does when making his case. He puts the accused on the witness stand and begins collecting evidence against the accused. He accumulates the evidence, fact by fact by fact by fact, until finally the enormity of the evidence is so overwhelming that the judge is forced to say, "I find you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."
- It means to convict in court of guilt.
- Even more, it means presenting the evidence so overwhelmingly that even the defendant at the end of the trial is forced to step up and say, “I admit it. I confess I am guilty."

The Holy Spirit brings things to light in the sinner's life; both his deeds and his thought life.
- He exposes every sin in his life - the things he did wrong and the things he didn't do right. He shows someone his mistakes.
- Conviction goes beyond accusation of wrongdoing. The allegation must be proven.

- The Holy Spirit pierces a person's heart until they know they are guilty.

The Holy Spirit convicts and then he convinces. What does that mean?
- The Holy Spirit will open a person's heart and lay it bare and reveal his sin to that person. In doing so, the Holy Spirit shows the sinner that he is damned before God. God's judgment exposes him to God's judgment on his life - he is under God's judgment and wrath. His judgment of doom in hell.
- Here is what God will convince him about himself, he is a godless sinner.
- See Jude 14-15. Note that the word "ungodly" is used four times. The Holy Spirit will convince every lost man that he is an ungodly man who commits ungodly deeds in an ungodly way, for he is an ungodly sinner.

When the sinner sees his ungodly heart exposed to a holy God, he will feel his own hopelessness, his own inevitable judgment, his own fear, his own forlornness, his own baseness, corrupted to the core.

B. Persuasion is an alarming experience

The Holy Spirit hammers and drives a man to see the tragedy of his soul without Christ.
- Listen to people describe what it's like to be convicted by the Holy Spirit:

(1) On the day of Pentecost a large crowd listens to Peter Preach. In the crowd there are many of those who cried out for the blood of Christ and probably some who helped kill him. But when the Holy Spirit falls on them, they are convicted of sin and see that Christ is the Son of God. And with deep conviction they cry out, "What must we do?" The same thing is happening today. People go on and on in their sins. They ignore Christ until one day the Holy Spirit convicts them. Then they see their sin and acknowledge that Christ is the Son of God and that He was crucified through their sin.
- Acts 2:37 - They were struck in the heart.

(2) Acts 5:33 Peter and the other apostles spoke to the Jewish Supreme Court, and again we are told "they were struck in the heart."

(3) Acts 7:54 When Steven, the first recorded Christian martyr, preached about Christ, those who heard him were "hit in the bone."

(4) Acts 9:5 When Saul was rescued on the way to Damascus, Jesus spoke to him and said, "It is hard for you to tread on the spikes."

So it is today when the Holy Spirit brings a sinner from his lost state. His heart feels churned, stung, crushed, heavy with a burden of sin and you long for the burden to be lifted and for peace of heart and forgiveness of your sins to be settled with God.

C. Belief is an activating experience

The Spirit wants to motivate you to do the only thing you can do to get rid of your sins - come unto Jesus.
- When you feel the Holy Spirit moving your heart to repent of your sins, to turn away from your sins, and to turn to God, you must not delay that decision.
- When you experienced the pull of the Holy Spirit to make a decision to get right with God and you didn't make it, remember what happened in your heart?

- His conviction left you. He spoke to you, convicted you and drew you to your decision, but you brushed Him aside and said, "Later."
- Do you remember what happened when you pushed him aside? he left you
The conviction and desire to make the decision soon evaporated. Therefore, when the Spirit of God is at work in us, we must react and react immediately. We have to make the decision.

The Indians describe convicting the spirit as follows: It is like a triangle with three sharp points on it that is placed in your heart. If you do something wrong, the triangle in your heart keeps spinning. Each time, the sharp points hurt the heart. But if you ignore the sharp points, they will dull and the points will wear down until you can't feel them anymore.

II. The Process of Persuasion - John 16:9-11

Of what does the Holy Spirit convict?

A. The nature of sin - John 16:9
He convicts the world of its guilt before God. He presents the evidence in such an overwhelming manner that even the defendant is forced at the end of the trial to step up and say, "I admit it. I admit. I am guilty."

Have you noticed that the Holy Spirit convicts us of SIN? Not SIN?
- What is the greatest sin against God? Murder? Steal? adultery? Rape? child abuse?
- The greatest sin against God is not believing in Christ! to trust him! It refuses to believe in Jesus Christ.

Most people don't believe that refusing to believe in Jesus Christ is the greatest sin. It is the head of all sins.
- Why? He is God's only begotten son. He came from heaven to earth to die to pay the debt of man's sins. He had no sin of his own, but he became sin for us. Sinful people crucified him. Not just Herod or Pilate or the Jews of that day, but you and I crucified him too.
- Of what sin does the Holy Spirit convict a lost person? It's the sin of unbelief.
- The Holy Spirit does not have to convict people of murder (or rape or adultery or lying or cheating etc.) because almost everyone knows that committing murder is wrong. Even murderers themselves know what they are doing is wrong.
- You don't have to judge people that it's wrong to murder people or rob banks or rob someone in the park or rape a woman in her house. You don't have to convince people that these things are wrong. They know they're wrong. Conscience convicts a lost person of these sins.
- And yet the very people who will admit that it's wrong to rape and murder and rob and steal will be the same people who will say, "Well, there's nothing wrong with not believing in Jesus." I tell you; it is the most terrible sin of all.

Here is what the Holy Spirit does in a lost person's life. He convicts and persuades by saying to the lost person, “You should believe in Jesus. You should accept Him as your Savior. You should trust Him.
- Do you know what that is? That's the Holy Spirit convincing you of the sin of not believing in Christ. And if you keep denying that, someday He'll finally convict that sin, and then it'll be too late.

The great damned sin is to reject Jesus Christ—John 3:17-18, 36; John 5:40, 43a; John 8:24;
Rom. 10:9-10
- In other words, the greatest question between God and man is not primarily the question of sin, but rather the question of the lost man's son.

Listen: belief is not a bad thing. It's a good thing. It is a demonstration of the love, mercy and grace of God. If He didn't convict people of sin, none of us would be saved.

B. The need for righteousness—John 16:10

Righteousness is the opposite of sin. Look, this is the other side.
- The Holy Spirit not only shows us how wicked we are, He shows us how pure and holy and righteous Jesus is.

One of the biggest mistakes man makes is comparing himself to other men. Then he will say, “I don't need God. I'm just as good and even better than the people down at the church."
Römer 10:3; Römer 3:23
- The Holy Spirit convinces the world of a new standard of righteousness that is Christ!
- Look again at John 16:10 and get ready to be blessed. Notice this little sentence: "Because I go to my father and you see me no more."
- Do you know what is the greatest proof that Jesus is absolutely righteous? It is the fact that God the Father took Him into His presence.
- Jesus was on the cross and what did the Father impose on him? our sin. He became sin for us.
- But watch out: And Jesus carried away this sin, came out of the tomb, and the Father said: "Come up." And Jesus says: "I can prove my righteousness because the Father received me into his presence."
- Can God accept something in His presence that is not just? NO! Habakkuk 1:13a When Jesus entered the presence of the Father, it was God who said, "You are righteous."

"Well, if we have to be absolutely perfect, absolutely righteous and absolutely right to enter God's presence, I will never make it!"
- I want to show you something wonderful. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, His righteousness is imputed to us and we enter God's presence as perfectly as Jesus did.
- 2 Cor. 5:21 The old song says, "I don't need another argument, I don't need another request. It is enough that Jesus died and that he died for me.”

C. The nearness of judgment - John 16:11

Who is the prince of this world? Satan. When was he judged? At the cross.

Jesus is not talking about future judgment. He's talking about past judgment.
- The Greek word is a perfect passive and means Satan was judged in the past, he will continue to be judged and he will be judged in the future. He stands doomed and will one day be damned to the lake of fire.

Calvary and the Resurrection were God's strike at Satan, crushing him to pieces. His judgment was guaranteed.

But Satan's judgment is a kind of judgment on every sinner. Any person who follows him will receive the same judgment as he did.

III. The purpose of persuasion

The Holy Spirit wants to convince us to trust Jesus so that God doesn't have to convict us at the last judgment.
– Let me remind you once again that the conviction of the Spirit is a sign of God's mercy and grace towards us.

But just being convinced is not salvation.
- Mourning for God leads to repentance. Remorse is an action word. It means turning from your sin and turning to Jesus.
- What do I have to do to be saved? Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.
- John 1:12; Like 55:6-7

Acts 7:51 When you are lost, God wants you to feel uncomfortable about your rejection of Christ. There is no worse sin than this.

There's a time I don't know when
A place I don't know where
Which marks the fate of men
To heaven or to despair.
There's a line unseen by us
that crosses every path;
Moreover, God Himself swore
That the one who goes is lost.
One is sent from heaven
To you who want to depart from God
While today it says repent
And don't harden your heart.

Don't step over the line! Your fate is at stake.
A boy left home to work in the city. He promised his mother that he would go to church on Sundays. On the first Sunday, his new friends invited him to go horseback riding. Remembering his promise, he initially refused. But then he gave in to her urging. Sunday morning came. As he began his trail ride with his new friends, he remembered going to church at home. He could see his parents going to the home church and remembered his promise. As he approached the center of town on horseback, the church bells invited him to the service. He drove on.
As he reached the outskirts, the bells grew fainter and fainter. He stopped. He said, "Guys, I come from a Christian family. I promised my mother that I would go to church today. I've noticed that the bells get weaker the further we go. A little more and I ride beyond the sound of the bells. Excuse me, but I'll go back while I can still hear the bells."
The bells of the Holy Spirit are ringing in your ears. You may have heard them in your childhood. The bells are ringing. As a teenager you heard the bells ringing - "Come to Jesus, come to Jesus". Now you are older and wiser. The bells can still be heard, but they are fading. You may be approaching the point where you will never hear the bells again. Come to Jesus while you still hear the bells! Let God's holy jealousy envelop you today.

The benefit of the Holy Spirit
Johannes 15:26-27; 16:7,12-15

Before reading the passage:

May I ask you a question as I begin the message? If you had a choice, would you rather have Jesus sitting next to you right now and see Him and touch Him and talk to Him, or would you rather have the Holy Spirit dwell in you?
- When we hear this question for the first time, most of us would probably say that we would like to have Jesus here with us.
- But Jesus said that it is for our benefit that He returns to heaven so that He can send us the Holy Spirit.

Read the passages:

Look again at John 16:7: “It is advisable FOR YOU...for your is for your is better for you that I return to heaven, where my Father is, so the Holy Spirit can come to you.” The Holy Spirit, with us and in us, gives us a unique advantage.

Why is it better for us that Jesus ascends to his Father so that he can send the Holy Spirit?

1. If Jesus had stayed with the disciples, he could not have died on the cross, shed his blood for our sins, been buried, and risen again to defeat the power of Satan and death. We would still be in our sins.

2. If He had not returned to Heavenly Father, He could only have been in one place at a time. Now the Holy Spirit is WITH and IN every believer in every place.

Do you remember the occasion when Jesus took his inner circle on the mountain and they witnessed his transfiguration? While Jesus was on the mountain, the other disciples tried to cast demons out of a little boy, but they couldn't. When Jesus came down from the mountain, the boy's father told him that they had come to his disciples and could not cast out the demons. Jesus rebuked his disciples and told them that he would not always be with them. Then Jesus came to the rescue and delivered them from their inadequate ministry.
- The Holy Spirit never pauses, never needs rest, never falls asleep, never gets distracted, and is never inadequate to meet our needs according to His will.
- He assured us: “And behold, I am with you always” and “I will never forsake or forsake you.”

3. If Jesus had not returned to the Father, He could not have sat at the right hand of God's throne and interceded for us.

4. If Christ had stayed with His disciples in the flesh, they would have had much less room to exercise their faith and less opportunity to glorify God and show His power in the world.

After Pentecost the disciples were twice as many men as before the coming of the Holy Spirit. Go to the Book of Acts and you can see the disciple increase in knowledge, faith, hope, diligence and courage.
-They did much more for Christ when he was absent than they ever did when he was with them.

The Holy Spirit is a worker! He is active in our life. Let me tell you just a few of the things the Holy Spirit does when He ministers in our lives;

I. He dwells in us - John 14:16-18

About 6 months after Janice and I got married I wanted to preach on Romans 8:9,14,16. I often “practiced” the Saturday night sermon on Janice. I asked her, "Janice, how does the Spirit testify with your spirit that you are a child of God?" She began to cry. She had heard me preach about a personal experience with Jesus, and Jesus came into her heart through the person of the Holy Spirit. She said, "It has never happened in my life, but I want it to happen." She was saved.

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is THE proof and assurance that you are saved.
- Now let me ask you, how does the Holy Spirit testify with your Spirit that you belong to Jesus? It's hard to put into words, isn't it?

There are three responses I sometimes encounter when speaking about indwelling:

A. Ignorance - That is, they are unaware of the indwelling Spirit

In Acts 19, when Paul went to Ephesus, “he found certain disciples (Acts 19:1) and asked them, ‘Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed?’” They replied, “We haven’t even heard if there is a Holy Spirit.”
- If you are not saved, the Holy Spirit does not dwell in you, but there are some who are saved and have never been taught about the Holy Spirit and they don't know what you are talking about when you talk about the indwelling.

I've talked to many people, including ministers, about how they knew they were indwelt by the Holy Spirit.
- Some spoke of “feeling the Spirit within”. I know what you're talking about, but you don't really FEEL the Holy Spirit. he is a ghost You cannot reach out and touch the spirit.
- Others say that they "feel the Spirit within". That's closer to the truth, but do you feel his presence all the time? If you don't feel His presence, does that mean He's not there?

Let me try to explain it this way: Here is a house with electrical wires running throughout the house and connected to the main power source. There are switches and outlets throughout the house. The power is on all the time, but when no light is needed the switch stays off. If no heater, toaster or other appliance is needed, the power will not activate. You wouldn't know electricity was running through the house unless you needed something to work with. Then when you need power, it's there for you.

- As a believer, God's mighty Spirit is always there, within you. When temptation comes, the
Spirit manifests by helping you resist temptation. When you need to bear your testimony, the Spirit will enable you to do so. Whatever you need the Holy Spirit to do, He is there.

B. Indifference

We often tend to underemphasize the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Someone said that when the Holy Spirit finished His work, many dead, cold churches wouldn't know the difference.

C. Pleasure

Some overemphasize the Holy Spirit or "sail" on the Holy Spirit to the exclusion of Christ.

II. He teaches us—John 14:16-17, 26; John 16:7

The word "Comforter" means "helper" or "one who is called to help," giving encouragement and admonition.

A great preacher at our convention once told the story of skiing in Colorado, and he noticed some people on the slopes wearing red vests. Wondering who they were, he walked closer and read these words on them: BLIND SKIER. He was amazed. If you've ever skied or watched others ski, you know how difficult it must be to ski with two good eyes, let alone no sight. He wondered, "How do they do that?"

He went to a ski instructor and asked him how a blind man could ski? The answer was fascinating. Every blind skier gets a guide. This guide can ski next to, behind or in front of the blind person - but always in a place where they can communicate with each other.

He was then told that there are two basic forms of communication that this guide will use: banging ski poles together to reassure the blind person that the guide was there; and speaking simple instructions about what to do next. The guide may say, "Go right, turn left, stop, slowly, the skier is coming on your right." The blind skier's sole responsibility is to show complete trust and immediate obedience to the guide's instructions.

III. He enlightens us—John 14:26; John 16:12-15

The Holy Spirit is our Paraclete, especially in relation to the teaching or revealing work of the Spirit.

When Jesus asked the disciples who they thought he was, Peter replied, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus said, "Blessed are you, Simon Barjonah, for flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but MY Father in Heaven.” The point is that spiritual truth must be revealed to us before we can truly understand and comprehend it.

Notice John 16:12. The word "bear" means "completely understand"

-Divine truth is unique truth. They don't understand God's truth on an academic level. How smart or how intelligent you are has nothing to do with your ability to understand God
-The Bible is inspired by God. It is alive, active and powerful. It is the revelation of the almighty Creator to his creation. Divine Scripture can only be understood when the divine author, the Holy Spirit, teaches it to us.

Jesus said He had many things to teach us, but we cannot bear or understand them now. The idea is that we cannot understand them all at the same time.
-As the saying goes, Jesus couldn't unload the whole wagon at once because the disciples couldn't handle it! It was necessary for the Holy Spirit to gradually bring the disciples to an understanding of the truth.

That's encouraging! There are so many things I don't know about the Lord and His ways. Yet I long to know her. The Lord knows how much I can "endure" at any given time, so He graciously advances with me based on my ability to learn and absorb truth. He always gives just a little so that I don't just collect facts, but learn the truth and live the truth.
- We all learn at different rates, but here's what you need to see: The Lord will not give us any more truth until we have learned and applied what He has already given us. Why give us more truth if we have not obeyed and applied what He has already given us!

"He leads us" means that he lovingly extends his hand to gently and gradually show us the way.
-It is actually an image of a guide introducing a traveler to an unknown land.
-As we enter the depths of Scripture, we do not walk alone. The Holy Spirit comes by our side, proclaiming and unfolding the truths of Christ.

The Spirit has a unique way of telling the truth to our hearts and minds. We may have read a passage a thousand times, then suddenly we see something new that we have never seen before. It's almost like a spiritual light is shining. It's like someone smuggled the truth in while I wasn't looking!

That's what makes God's Word so exciting! He is constantly showing us new truths, and no matter how many times we throw our spiritual bucket into the ocean of His Word, we will never reach the bottom. There is always more!

The Holy Spirit always puts the limelight on Jesus! He always glorifies our wonderful Lord Jesus!

Sorrow turned to joy and peace
Johannes 16:16-33

I remind you that our Lord is only about two hours away from his arrest. Throughout this "discourse" our Lord is trying to bring comfort to His disciples.
- From John 13 to John 17, the "discourse," Jesus deals with sad things and then comes back with comforting things.
- Jesus said that one of the disciples would betray Him, that Peter would deny Him, that He would be killed and that the disciples would be persecuted.
- On the positive side, Jesus washes the disciples' feet, he comforts their hearts by saying that although he would be killed, he would go to his father, prepare a dwelling place for them and return to take them and to carry to the place which he has prepared for them. He promises to send One like Himself, the Holy Spirit, who would be with them and within them to comfort, guide and teach them while He was away from them. He encourages them to love each other deeply, for their mutual love would benefit them greatly in hard times.

Two main topics that Jesus will deal with:

I. Sorrow will turn to joy—John 16:16-24

Joy is a word that is not easy to define. Webster defines joy as “a very happy feeling; great pleasure; Joy."
-While these terms certainly describe joy, the Christian explanation has a much deeper dimension. I would put it this way: Joy is the attitude of the heart and mind of one who delights in the Lord alone. It shows up in a person's temperament and affects the whole person. Joy begins within and permeates all of life.

I say again that joy comes from a right relationship with the living God and a unique joy in Him.

This joy is found in many places in Scripture:
● Ps.37:4; 30:5
● Habakkuk 3:17-19
● Phil. 4:4-7

Unhappy Christians are a bad recommendation of the Christian faith.
-Can we really live in joy in this world? Is it possible for us to live in pure, overflowing, boundless joy?

Although sorrow is very real to us, our Lord promises that such sorrow will turn to joy.

John 16:16-20 confusing: "A little while and you will not see me, and a little while and you will see me".
- “Soon you will not see me in my physical form, for I will die and ascend to my Father, BUT you will see me in my spiritual form, because I will send my Holy Spirit to you.

Notice the last part of John 16:20. Jesus is not saying that joy will replace sorrow, but that sorrow will be transformed into joy.
-Jesus says that the very event that caused you sorrow and sorrow will be the very event that brings you joy.
- The cross will bring you sorrow and sadness, and when the cross is over, the cross will be your cause of joy. The cross is our source of joy!
● In John 19 there was mourning when Jesus lay on the cross; in John 20 there was joy, excitement and joy because Jesus had risen from the dead.
● In Luke 24, the men on the road to Emmaus were sad until our risen Lord joined them and began to speak to them, and then they said their hearts were burning within them as he walked with them.
● A family member dies young and there is sadness and no glimmer of good, but 3 or 4 months later that person's death caused several to be saved and then you say, “Now I can see the miracle of God's grace in this case."

Jesus uses an illustration in John 16:21-22. A woman is in labor and the pain is so great that she declares that she will never have another child, but once the child is born she forgets the agony, for joy that a man is about to die world is coming.
-John 16:24 Your joy will be fully satisfied, filled to the brim and overflowing.

II. Suffering is turned into peace - John 16:33

Notice the powerful little phrase "in me." It is the subject of the apostle Paul, who used the phrase some 160 times.
- When we confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, He lives in us through the Holy Spirit. We are in Christ and Christ is in us, and from this moment forward He meets every need of our lives for time and eternity.
● From this moment on: All our sins are forgiven; we have eternal life; we have life in abundance; we go to heaven; He has a purpose for us.

We shall have affliction: but be of good cheer; I have conquered the world.

My faith has found a resting place
not in device or creed;
I trust the ever living,
His blood helped me.

I don't need another argument
I need no other request;
It is enough that Jesus died
and that he died for me.

The greatest prayer ever prayed
Johannes 17

Hear! Jesus prays!

No one has ever prayed like Jesus prayed! No one ever prayed as often as Jesus! Jesus gave parables about prayer. Jesus gave instructions on how to pray when his disciples asked, "Lord, teach us to pray."
- Jesus is God the Son praying to God the Father. Well, if Jesus was God, then why did he pray to God? Because he knew the father and how important it is to pray.
- Think about it: If God the Son prayed to God the Father so often, doesn't that tell you that WE should pray to the Father often? That is why Paul encourages us to pray without ceasing.

You can read this prayer in under four minutes, and yet it is the largest recorded prayer ever prayed.
-Prayers don't have to be long to be powerful or meaningful or rich. The most important thing about prayer is real communion with God!

Jesus could have prayed that prayer silently and we would never have known what he said. I believe he prayed aloud to reveal what was in his heart regarding his father and to let us know that he intended to follow the father's will to the end that the father might be glorified and our sins ours forgiven, for the price of redemption would be paid in full. He also wanted us to know that if we trust him, he will keep us safe in him until he receives us in glory.

I believe the disciples listened in reverence when our Lord prayed and they never forgot that prayer.
I said this prayer is the greatest prayer ever prayed. Why is that?

1. It's great because who prayed it.

There is no other voice in heaven or on earth greater, more holy, more fruitful, more powerful, more elevated than the voice of the Son of God who offered this prayer.
- The words of prayer are simple but majestic. Simple yet mysterious.
- It is as if we are approaching the throne of God with our Christ. It is as if the veil is pulled back and we are escorted into the Holy of Holies.
- Only God the Son could ask the Father to glorify Him as Jesus did in verse one.

2. It is great because of the occasion that required the prayer.

Jesus was about to die on the cross. John 17:1 says, "Father, the hour is come." Six times in John's gospel, John records Jesus saying, "My hour is not yet come"; Now He says, "Father, the hour has come."
- Note John 17:4 Jesus always finished the work the Father gave him to do. On the cross he said, "It is finished."
- The first recorded words of Jesus were: "I have to attend to my father's business." His last words before his death were: "It is finished."

3. It is great because of the requests in prayer.

Prayer that asks for nothing does nothing.

you come to a king
bring great requests with you,
For his grace and power are such,
No one can ever ask for too much.

The prayer can be broken down as follows:
A. Jesus prayed for himself - John 17:1-5
B. Jesus prayed for His disciples—John 17:6-19
C. Jesus prayed for the whole church - John 17:20-26

4. It is great because we can hear on earth what He is praying for us on the right side of the throne in heaven

Let that affect you! We are humbled when we have the privilege of listening to God's Son as he speaks with his heavenly Father before the hour comes when he gives his life as a ransom for mankind.
- Heb. 7:25

I. He prays for His glory - John 17:1,4

The center of this prayer is the cross. Everything flows from it. It is His finished work on the cross that will glorify the Father.
- In John 17:1 Jesus says, "Glorify Thy Son." The actual event that would glorify the Son was His death!
- By his death he received the adoration, adoration and love of millions whose sins he bore.
- He accepted this path to glory because he knew that through it he would be exalted to the Father.
- The goal is for the Father to be glorified in the Son for His plan of salvation. So he sought his Father's glory by his own glory.

II. He prays for our protection - John 17:6-11

Salvation is God's gift and its preservation is His responsibility.
- That doesn't mean you and I can do whatever we want. When salvation is a reality in your life and mine, there will be a hunger for righteousness and a clean life. Anyone who claims to be saved but does not live cleanly is being deceived and needs to be born again.

Yet even the redeemed occasionally fall into sin. If we do this, we will be convicted and chastened by the Lord, but we will not be removed from His family. Salvation is eternal!
- We are preserved by the Father AND by the Son. Nothing can loosen us from his grasp!
-I'm so thankful it's not my responsibility to save myself! I am weak but he is strong!

III. He prays for our protection—John 17:12, 15

Satan hates God, but he knows he is no match for God. The best way for him to hurt God is to hurt his children. You know that from being a parent. What hurts me the most is not what is done to me, but the evil done to those I love.
-We're in a fight. The devil hates us, resists us, and often attacks us. I am grateful that the Lord has promised me protection and His presence. When the devil is after us, the Lord takes over our defense.
-I Peter 5:8 The devil roars, but he cannot touch the king's child! Col. 3:3 says our life is hidden in Christ.
-Satan's plan for the saint of God is to divide them, distract them, disable them, discourage them, and destroy them.
-God provided protection from evil - Eph. 6:10-11

IV. He prays for our purity - John 17:16-19

"To sanctify" means to set them apart, to sanctify them, to make them pure, to make them more spiritual, more loving and more useful.
- God wants us to hate what he hates and love what he loves.

V. He prays for our perception - John 17:22-23

What an amazing thing. God the Father loves us as he loves his own dear Son! A few years ago, Bill Gaither wrote a song called "We Are Loved". In this song, he began expressing a person who has never known the extent of God's love.
"I said, 'If you knew, you wouldn't want me;
My scars are hidden by the face I wear.
He said, “My child, my scars run deeper;
It was love for you that got her there.”

Then comes a wonderful realization of the extent of God's love!

“I am loved, I am loved, I can risk loving you;
For the one who knows me best, loves me most,
I'm loved, I'm loved, won't you please take my hand
We are free to love one another, we are loved.”

The lesson of Jesus' request is overwhelming. The statement he makes about how much God loves us is almost incomprehensible. Jesus teaches us that God the Father loves Jesus' followers just as He loves Jesus. Imagine!

VI. He prays for our coronation - John 17:24-26

Look at the phrase in John 17:24, "Be with me...where I am." It's the same phrase used in John 14:3, "with where I am, there you will also be."
It is overwhelming to think that Jesus Christ wants to spend eternity with us.

What is the place like where we will spend eternity with Jesus? Jesus summed it up in the word "paradise."

Note John 17:24 "that they may see my glory"
- Not only did Jesus want his followers to “be with him where he was”, he wanted his followers to be able “to see my glory”.
-This is the ultimate experience for a child of God. This is the greatest moment for a Christian. It is an indescribable joy that awaits all who have dedicated themselves in faith to Jesus Christ.
- “So that they may see My glory which You have given me; for you loved me before the foundation of the world.” John 17:24
- Think about it. Not only will we go to heaven, not only will we be where He is, we will see Him in all His glory.

A look into the heart of Jesus
Johannes 17:1-5

John 13-17 is our Lord's Upper Room Discourse. Everything said and done in these five chapters takes place within a 24-hour period.
- Jesus spends most of the first four chapters talking to the disciples about the Father; now Jesus will speak to the Father about his disciples.

What do you think God the Son would say to God the Father the night before he offered himself up as a sacrifice for the sins of the world?

Imagine with me for a moment what the divine communication between God the Father and God the Son must be like. What a deep and profound conversation must have taken place; too profound for us to comprehend.
-Isaiah 55:8-9

God allows us in John 17 to listen to God the Son speaking with God the Father in some of the most profound truths in God's revelation to man. We hear in these words an example of the divine communication that was constantly taking place between the Father and the Son while he was on earth.
-In simple phrases, Jesus prays to the Father a prayer of consecration and total dedication and devotion of himself for the sacrifice at Calvary. We need to sit in silence and ponder in awe as Jesus opens his heart and reveals it to his Father.
- Jesus raises his eyes to heaven and prays, being both high priest and vicarious sacrifice on the altar. He is both the Lamb of God who would take up and carry away the sin of the world, and the one perfect priest who did not have to make a sacrifice for his own sin first because he never experienced personal sin.

Nowhere do we see the heart of our Savior more clearly than in John 17 when we have the opportunity to hear Him pray.

Four truths I want to point out:

I. Awe of our Lord - John 17:1

"And lifted up his eyes to heaven" We do not know whether our Lord was kneeling or standing when he said this prayer, but we do know that he "lifted up his eyes to heaven."
-Most people bow their heads and close their eyes when they pray, but Jesus lifted his head and fixed his eyes to heaven.

Many different postures are recorded in the Bible, and all are acceptable.

The Jews were used to raising their hands, palms up, open to God, expecting to receive! Some today fold their hands when they pray, but I do not find this practice anywhere in Scripture.

Some people bowed their knees when they prayed, just as Jesus did when he prayed into them
Gethsemane (Lukas 22:41).
-We are told in Matt. 26:39 that Jesus fell on his face as he was talking to his father.
-King David sat when he conversed with God, and Abraham stood when he interceded for Sodom (Genesis 18:22).
-The most important thing is the attitude of the heart. It is far easier to bend the knees than to bend the heart in submission.

The first request Jesus offers is for himself. Some consider it selfish to pray for oneself. Sometimes it is, but it is not always the case. Throughout Scripture we are encouraged to pray for ourselves.
- If we want to be saved, we must pray something like this: "God, be merciful to me a sinner."
- We are also encouraged by the example of Jesus to pray for ourselves. There are times when the best way to pray for others is to pray for ourselves.
-In John 17, Jesus uses the first five verses to pray for himself, but the next 21 verses to pray for others.

A wise and beautiful prayer begins like this:
"Help me to live from day to day,
In such an oblivious way
That even when I kneel to pray
My prayer will be for others.”

II. Our Lord's Relationship - John 17:1

Four times Jesus said, "Father"; two more times he calls him "Holy Father" (John 17:11) and "Righteous Father" (John 17:25).
-The word reveals the relationship as a child to its parent. It is the close relationship of communion and intimacy between father and son.
- In verses one and two, Jesus uses the third person, calling himself "Your Son" and "the Son"; Not just "I" and "I". Jesus uses such language to indicate his divinity and eternal relationship with his Father.

We naturally turn to the Father because prayer is based on sonship.
- We hear people directing their prayers to the Son and even to the Holy Spirit. Is that wrong?
As Steven gave his life for Christ, he saw Jesus in heaven and addressed his prayer: "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit" (Acts 7:59). I don't know of any prayer in the Bible addressed to the Holy Spirit. Since our prayers are addressed to God and the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all in deity, we can technically address our prayers to any of them. However, the biblical pattern seems to be that we pray to the Father in the name of the Son and through the Holy Spirit.

III. The Realization of Our Lord - John 17:1

"The hour has come"; "the time has come"; "it's time".

"It's time" can mean something wonderful, like the hour of your wedding, or the hour of your graduation, or the career of your life begins, or it can be the hour of your death, when you glide into eternity, either arriving on the golden shores of heaven or enveloped in the flames of an eternal burning hell where the worm dies not and the fire is not quenched.

Jesus says to his father, “It is time. The hour has come.”
-Jesus is talking about the time he has been looking forward to all his life.
-In that hour the Son of God would finish the work of his earthly life by his death.
- In that hour the fear of Satan's vengeance would be unleashed in full rage against the life of Jesus Christ.
- In that hour man's wicked wickedness would be exposed while the children of darkness would do their worst and nail the perfect Son of God to the cross.
- In that hour the love of Christ would be affirmed as God's stamp of "FULL PAYMENT" would be placed on believers' sin debt to Christ as the righteous would die for the unrighteous.

IV. Our Lord's Request

Jesus makes seven requests in this prayer FOR OTHERS; but just a big request to yourself.

Jesus was NOT asking for power to die, or for a lightening of the burden he was to carry, or for encouragement in any shape or form.
- Jesus was not concerned about the cross with its suffering, he saw only a means to the glory of God. His prayer was, "Father, do this for me so I can do more for you."

Our Lord never stole the limelight, and even when crowds wanted to praise Him, He withdrew to the hilltop to meet God.

A. Jesus asked the Father to glorify him so that he could continue to glorify his Father.

Jesus looked ahead to the cross.
- The cross was the glory of Jesus, for he was never grander and more majestic than in his death.
- By going to the cross, Jesus showed that God's love for us knows no bounds. Jesus showed that there was nothing the love of God was not willing to do and suffer for our salvation and redemption.

Jesus glorified his Father in person (Hebrews 1:3), glorified him through his miracles
(Matthew 9:8), glorified him through his words, constantly attributing all praise to him
(Mt 11:25), but above all He had glorified Him by His holy life.
- The last place people would look for the glory of God would be at the cross; yet the Father is glorified when we turn from our sins and put our trust in Jesus as our Savior because of His sacrifice on the cross.
-Jesus went to the cross the next day, knowing that his death would secure the salvation of all God had given him.

B. Jesus glorified the Father by finishing the work the Father had given him to do—John 17:4.

Jesus finished the work. No one but Jesus Christ could have accepted this commission and successfully completed it. The great work of redemption required the perfect sacrifice, which
Spotless Lamb of God.
-Jesus finished the work. There is nothing to add to it and we dare not take anything away from it.

- Our Lord completed the work of redemption on the cross, rose again, returned to heaven and sat down on His throne at the right hand of the Father.

C. The Father glorifies the Son by giving him those whom the Father has chosen to be saved.
Johannes 17:2

"Father, I have given eternal life to all you have given me, because I have finished the work you gave me to do."

One of the great mysteries of the Bible is that we were chosen by God. In fact, we cannot even come to Jesus unless the Father chooses us first. John 6:44
- They say, “But I thought we had received eternal life by believing on Jesus Christ.” John 3:16
- Is it by faith or is it God's decision? John 6:37-40 (Note: "All that the Father gives...and believeth in him.")

Here we see everything somehow put together. The Father "gives" a person to Jesus, but eternal life comes when a person responds by "believing" on Jesus. John 3:35-36; John 10:28

"What if I'm not one of the 'chosen ones'?" You'll never know unless you believe it. If you believe, you are chosen. If you don't believe, it doesn't prove anything other than that you just haven't believed yet.

No, I don't understand any of this, but I know that God understands and I know that "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

D. Jesus asked that his glory be restored, which he enjoyed before the creation of the world. John 17:5

Jesus possessed and manifested the same glory with God before becoming flesh.
-Phil. 2:7 speaks of temporarily setting aside his visible glory, but not his deity. This means that Jesus lived in heaven before becoming the Godman.
-Now Jesus goes back home and regains the glory that he had saved for ministry on earth.

Oh, the joy of it! “Father, glorify me, not with crowns or jewels; Not with earthly honors, but surround Me again with the intricate glory and wonder of Your own dear Presence. Let me know once more the communion and glory I had with you before the world was.”

One day we will see Him in all His glory!

What is eternal life?
Johannes 17:1-3

Before reading the passage

Queen Victoria of England was visiting Saint Paul's Cathedral one Sunday and something touched her heart. The next day, she wrote the chaplain a note that said, "Can one be absolutely sure of eternal security in this life?" can be."
Her question and the chaplain's response were published in the court news. The article caught the attention of a very humble pastor named John Townson. After reading the Queen's request and the sad reply she received from the Chaplain, John Townson decided to answer himself, knowing the risk of confronting the Queen. So he sent her the following note:

"Her Most Gracious Majesty and our Beloved Queen Victoria from one of her humblest servants with trembling hands and sincere love, and knowing that we can now be absolutely sure of our eternal life in this house where the Lord Jesus went to prepare I ask Your Most High Majesty to read the following scriptures: John 3:16; John 17:3 and Romans 10:9-10. These passages prove that for those who believe and accept His finished work there is full assurance of salvation through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

I sign myself, your servant for heaven's sake, John Townson."

He didn't know what to expect and he was afraid he might have offended the queen. He hoped she would answer right away, but two weeks passed without a word. And then he finally got this note from Queen Victoria. It read: “To John Townson, I have received your recent letter and in reply I would like to say that I have carefully and prayerfully read the Scriptures referred to. I now believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ for me and trust in God's grace to meet you in the house of which He said, "I go to prepare a place for you." Signed, Victoria."

God not only made provision for us to be saved, He made provision for us to know with assurance that we are saved and belong to Him.

Read the section:

John is not only the apostle of love, he is also the apostle of life. The word "life" occurs 36 times in his gospel.
- The reason John wrote his gospel is that we may know how to have eternal life and know it. John 20:30-31; 1 John 5:12-13

Jesus used the word "life" to describe himself and what he gives to those he is redeeming.
Johannes 11:25; Johannes 14:6; Kol. 3:4; Phil. 1:21
-Our greatest need is eternal life through the forgiveness of our sins.

I want to share three things with you:

I. Our entry into eternal life - John 17:3

What does it mean to have eternal life?

1. Some believe that eternal life is just an extension of life or that a person will live forever.

Did you know that when the Bible talks about eternal life, it's not talking about living forever?
- I've heard preachers say, "If you want to live forever, trust Christ!" Listen, everyone's going to live somewhere forever. Even the lost will live somewhere forever.
-2 Thess. 1:9 is a picture of hell. Paul says that those without Christ "shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord."
-Again and again the book of Revelation speaks of the lost person, separated from God, in an ever-living, ever-dying state.
No dead state; not a ruined state, but an agonizing life in an ever-living, never-dying state.

2. Eternal life is not in one place; it is in one person - John 17:3

Some people think, "Well, just let me go to heaven and slam the door." Satan was in heaven before he rebelled and tried to take God's throne, and God threw him out of heaven.

No. Salvation lies in one person, the Lord Jesus Christ.
-Eternal life is the life of God in the soul of man!
-2 Peter 1:4 says that we are partakers of God's nature or life.

What is eternal life? John 17:3 says it means knowing God through Jesus Christ.

The Greek word translated "know" has three meanings.

A. It means to be aware

This is what we mean when we say we know that the United States is governed by a President. We don't know all the details of it. We know it because we were taught it in school.

B. The second meaning involves information

Not only do we know that the United States has a President, but we have gathered information about how our government works.

C. The word "know" in John 17:3 is a knowledge best described in terms of relationships.

This relationship is with "the only true God and Jesus Christ, whom you sent" (John 17:3).
- The word “know” is a present tense verb, meaning our knowledge of Him continues and lasts. It refers to a personal, intimate relationship with the living God that grows and grows over the years.
- He does not mean that we know ABOUT God, but that we know God. This intimate relationship develops through our trust, obedience, worship, prayer, meditation and study of His Word.

The life of Moses helps us understand what is meant here:

Moses was conscious of God growing up. He had godly parents who taught him about God and learned of God's promise to deliver his people from bondage.

Then Moses met God. He met God at the burning bush. He learned several things about God:
1. God revealed his holiness to Moses. As God stood in front of the burning bush, He said, "Don't come near. Take off your sandals. You are standing on holy ground, because I am here!"

2. Moses learned of his own sinfulness in the presence of God, for we are told that Moses hid his face because he was afraid to look at God.

- Have you ever been troubled knowing that God knows everything about you, including your sin, and that one day you will give Him an account of your sin?

3. Moses learned that God is sovereign and that he knows and sees everything.
-God told Moses that he had seen the distress of his people and heard their cry.

Now back to John 17:3: Knowing God is an intimate, life-changing encounter in which you confess your sins to Him, invite Him into your life to take control of your life in a personal way, and confess Him as Lord of you your life.

It's more than just knowing ABOUT Jesus. The devils know of Jesus and tremble, but they will not be saved. Salvation means knowing and trusting Jesus personally and allowing Him to be Lord of your life.

II. The Essence of Eternal Life - John 17:2

Eternal life cannot be earned. It is a present. Rome. 6:23
- Note John 17:2 “that he should GIVE (Christ) everlasting life.” It's a gift! What is this gift? It is:

1. An expensive gift
It's a free gift, but it's not a cheap gift. It is the most expensive gift ever given, for it cost the Son of God his life.

2. An everlasting gift
Unlike most gifts we receive that break or wear out, eternal life gets better and better as the years go by.

3. An indispensable gift
Everyone needs it. It is the only gift suitable for everyone because everyone needs it.

4. An expressive gift
Some gifts are given out of duty or guilt, but eternal life is given as an expression of the Father's great love for us.

5. An exclusive gift
The only way to get this gift is to ask for it. Although it is offered to all, it must be accepted.

III. The experience of eternal life

Eternal life is two-dimensional.

A. Eternal life is a fulfilled life

The idea of ​​eternal life is not simply related to going to heaven one day. Yes, that includes it, but Jesus spoke of eternal life as a present reality. He said, "This IS eternal life"; not this shall be eternal life. Much is yet to come, but there is so much now!
-John 10:10 In eternal life, Jesus Christ gives us something of His life, which He experienced on earth in perfect fulness. He lived as a human being dependent on and enjoying the Father.
- The same joy, peace and life he spoke of is the same abundance he gives us. He brings something from heaven into our own souls to give us a taste of the glories that lie ahead.

1.It means enjoyment

We have a new fellowship, a partnership, a relationship, a fellowship with God. We are never alone because He is always with us. We can tell him our troubles and share our joys.

2. It means extension

Life in Christ gives new meaning to life. Life becomes fuller, more positive, more exciting. You have a better outlook on life. You have a greater appreciation for life because life has more in store for you.

3.It means enrichment - I Cor. 2:9-10

Eternal life is not only for the future, but also for now.

B. Eternal life is lasting life

What God has started in us, He will never stop! We will live on in His presence forever.
-Johannes 17:24

Whatever Heaven is like, it will be the most God-centered, God-glorifying, God-honoring, God-centered place in eternal existence! God's throne is the center of it. The Father and the Son illuminate it with their glory. And we shall see Him as He is! We will have human bodies fit for glory just like the body of our Lord Jesus. We will carry with us forever the glorious image of Jesus Christ.

May I ask you: do you have eternal life?

Jesus prays for our safety
Johannes 17:11-12, 15

Before reading the passage:

Once again we are privileged to kneel with the disciples as their Master, and our Master leads us to the throne of grace.
-Jesus prays aloud so his disciples know what he is praying for them. He wants to encourage them. As he prays for his disciples, he also prays for us.
- This prayer also tells us what Jesus is praying for us right now, sitting at the right hand of his Father.

Jesus makes seven requests for his disciples and for us:
1. He prays for our safety - John 17:11-12
2. He prays that we will be joyful - John 17:13
3. He prays that we live holy lives - John 17:14-16
4. He prays for our sanctification - John 17:17-21
5. He prays for our unity - John 17:22-23
6. He prays for our homecoming - John 17:24
7. He prays that we love - John 17:25-26

Now we come to the first request of our Lord to us:

Read the section

Everyone wants to feel safe. This applies to our relationships, our finances and our jobs. While safety is valuable in all of these areas, there is no safety that brings us more joy than safety in our relationship with Jesus Christ.

Baptists have long been identified as those who believe in the eternal security of our salvation through Jesus Christ. We have upheld this teaching even in the face of criticism and contempt from other groups.
- We need to make sure we understand what we mean by the believer's eternal security.
1. Only those who are truly born again are safe in Christ.
- I say this because some have a false security. They made a decision, they joined a church, they got baptized, they even wrote the date they made their decision in their Bible because a minister told them, and if they ever doubted their salvation, they could they look back on that date with the assurance that they were saved.
- I think it's good to write the date of your salvation somewhere, but here's my point: If you base your assurance on something EXTERNAL, it really has nothing to do with salvation.
- There must be an inward testimony of the Holy Spirit of a spiritual reality in a person's life. When genuine salvation takes place, there is both internal and external proof—Rom. 8:9, 14, 16; 2 Cor. 5:17

The Bible makes it very clear that those who are truly saved are saved by power
God - John 6:37-40; 1 Peter 1:5; Jude 1, 24; Phil. 1:6

Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before;
Every day with Jesus I love him more and more;
Jesus saves and keeps me, and He is the one I live for:
Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before.

I want to remind you that although you can never lose your salvation if you are truly saved, if you walk away from Him you can lose blessings and rewards.

I. The request of prayer - John 17:11-12, 15

Jesus just said that he will die, rise from the dead, and ascend to heaven. He will physically leave this world, but his disciples will remain. They're not going anywhere, not yet. Jesus goes to the Father, to heaven, in contrast to the disciples who stayed behind.

Note John 17:11 Jesus prays, "Father, protect them and keep them united."

One of Satan's best ways of rendering the Church ineffective is to cause disunity and division among the bodies.
-Psalm 133:1-2 We're actually all on the same team. It's not that we can't have disagreements, it's just that we all need to be walking in the same direction, walking with Jesus.

A pastor tells how he is a member of the Rotary club in his town. At one point, the club decided to hold a "Bring Your Competition" meeting to increase its membership. Some of the boys asked the pastor, “Who are you bringing, the pastor from the other Baptist church or the pastor from the Methodist church?” The pastor replied, “These guys are not my competition. You are on the same page as me. I'll go down to the corner bar and bring the bartender."
-Sometimes one of the greatest things you can accomplish in marriage counseling is getting the husband and wife to realize that they really are on the same page!

The disciples were quite a heterogeneous group. Some of them were simple fishermen. One was a tax collector for the Roman government. One was a political activist, a zealot dedicated to overthrowing the Roman government. Even on the night Jesus prayed this prayer
Luke 22:24 says there was a dispute among the disciples as to who was greatest!

Now notice the prayer of Jesus: He does not ask for their removal from the world, but for their preservation!
- Jesus takes this little group that He loves so much and puts it in the hands of the Father!
- Jesus does not ask that these men have it easy or that they be spared from conflict, suffering or injury. He wants them and we to stay in the world because the world is in need. The world is where the sorrow is; where is the corruption; where the injustices and injustices are!

“Father, I do not pray that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the
evil while they are in the world."

The word "keep" or "kept" occurs four times in these verses. It talks about keeping something safe and secure, guarding or acting as a guardian.

Jesus prays that the Father would keep the disciples and us BEFORE and INTO something.

A. "Preserve them from evil and from the world (the world system)."

The word "world" occurs 34 times in John 13-17. He speaks about the world system under Satan's control.
-1. Johannes 2:15-16
-He will not remove us from the world; We will remain IN the world, but we are not meant to be OF the world.
- It is not a problem when there is a boat in the water, but there is a big problem when there is water in the boat. We are IN the world, but we are not meant to be OF the world.

Jesus does not pray for the comfort of the disciples, but he is very interested in their CHARACTER!

What does it mean to be guarded, guarded, guarded, cared for, separated from the world, guarded in the name of the Father? It has to do with the Father's name and nature.
- God described His name and nature to Moses: Exodus 34:5-7a
- Now compare how Paul says mature believers should be: Col. 3:12-17

Any problem could be solved between two people if only we put this into practice.

II. Reflection in prayer - John 17:12

What about Judas? Didn't Jesus protect Judas? Let me quickly share four facts about Judas:
1. Judas was not a believer - John 6:64
2. Judas was never cleansed - John 13:11
3. Judas was not one of the elect - John 13:18
4. In this sense, Judas Christ was never “dedicated”—John 18:8-9

Judas is an example of an unbeliever pretending to be saved. He was a professor but not an owner!

III. The reason for the prayer

1. They desperately needed father's care.

They were alone now, without the presence of Jesus, in a hostile world.
- Because of our Lord's unworldliness, the world hated him.

Jesus told them that if they were of the world the world would love them, but because they were not of the world the world would hate them.

-Jesus told them that he had conquered the world and that he wants the same victory for his own, because yielding to the world means disaster.

2. Jesus asked the Father to keep them and us because He knows our weakness.

When the Lord saved us, he didn't make us perfect. He continues to work grace in us every day, forming us in the image of Christ until one day we stand before His throne in the perfect image of our Lord. But until then, we are full of imperfections and weaknesses.
-We have a new nature and new desires and we are on our way to heaven, but we have not arrived yet.
-Our natural tendency is towards weakness. The only good thing in us is what the Lord has laid down in us.

3. Jesus asked the Father to protect us from the strong external influences around us that would rob us of our faith.

Satan will attack us, and if the Lord does not keep His sustaining grace upon our lives, we will fall.

4. Jesus asked the Father to keep us because there is nothing more precious or valuable than a soul fit for heaven through Christ - 2 Tim. 1:12, 14

5. Jesus prays this prayer so that we may glorify the Father's name.

"As the Father sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world." You and we have a definite work to do. We are to be salt and light in the world, and the work can only be done if we are kept clean in Him.

6. When Jesus prays to his Father, he reminds him that we belong to him.

He is committed to his own. His faithfulness demands that he protect us.

Why is it so important that the Father hears our Lord's prayer to keep us; to protect us?

For if any believer - even one - should lose his salvation, God would lose far more than he who lost his salvation!
- If a man lost his salvation, he would lose his soul, but God would lose far more. He would lose his glory! His fame and integrity are at stake!

The believer does not deserve salvation. It is God's gift of grace! But God deserves to be glorified because He is God!

Phil. 1:6

Jesus prays that we will be happy
Johannes 17:13; Johannes 15:11; 1. Johannes 1:4

Have you seen what Jesus prayed for every born again believer? JOY! And NOT any kind of joy, HIS joy!!

This is the opposite of what the world thinks and what many Christians think too.
- Some people feel that the more unhappy they are, the more pleasing they are to God!
-Some think it is God's will that they are gloomy and sour!
- Some are desperately afraid of anything that gives pleasure or joy because it must be sinful. I mean if we're having fun and laughing and having a good time, it must be sinful.

Now there are many ways to be happy. I came across a Chinese proverb that says, "If you want to be happy for an hour, get high." If you want to be happy for three days, then get married. If you want to be happy for eight days, kill your pig and eat it. If you want to be happy forever, learn to fish.”

Well, Jesus is not talking about happiness, because happiness depends on what is happening around us. Jesus speaks of joy; Joy that comes no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in!

The word "joy" and similar terms like "rejoice", "rejoice", "cheerfulness" are used in the N.T. Used over 130 times.
-In the NT, the verb meaning "to rejoice" occurs 72 times. The noun meaning "joy" occurs 60 times.

The Bible is a book of joy:
● German. 12:12 "Rejoice before the Lord your God."
● Neh. 8:10 "The joy of the Lord is my strength."
● Psalm 16:11 "In your presence there is joy in abundance."
● Psalm 118:24 “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will be happy and happy about it.”
● Luke 2:10 When Jesus was born, the angels proclaimed, “I bring you great joy!”
● Phil. 4:4 Paul was in prison and he admonished his readers: "Rejoice always in the Lord, and again I will say it, Rejoice!"

It is not the Lord's will that we be a dark and sour people!
-Jesus is in the shadow of the cross; the cool breath of death blows upon him; yet He speaks of His joy.

Jesus gave the beatitudes - the attitudes that should be in each of us, and he said, "Blessed are..." or "O the blessedness."
- When he speaks of being persecuted for his own sake, he says: "Rejoice and be exceedingly glad."
-One of our Lord's favorite phrases is: "Be of good cheer."

Remember that after prayer in the Father's name we are preserved and alive
together in unity our Lord prays for our joy.

I want to share three things with you:

I. The request for joy

Why did Jesus want his disciples and us to have a happy heart?

1. Because he loves us

How many things do we do for our children or grandchildren, not because it is absolutely necessary, but because we want to make them happy; we want to make them smile; we want to see the sparkle in their eyes; we want to see their loving response.
-Jesus said: “If you are wicked and know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
- God is happy to do us good because he loves us!

2. Joy is a great protection against temptation.

If your heart is empty with joy, you are most likely looking for something different and maybe something undesirable to fill your heart.
- When your heart is filled with joy, contentment and satisfaction, unwanted things may knock at your door, but you are unlikely to answer.
-You see that in marriages. When a man and a woman find joy in each other, their relationship is secure. When they start neglecting each other and stop bringing each other joy and fulfillment, that's when the problems begin.

3. The joy of the Lord is our strength to win others to him.

I wonder if anyone was ever won to the Lord by a acidified, cheerless disciple.
-Do you remember the older brother? Hear him complain to his father, "Look, I've served you for so many years, and you never gave me a party and slaughtered the fattened calf." I don't think anyone came up to him and asked him to to introduce his father.
-I wonder if anyone would want to meet our Savior with the kind of attitude and spirit that we possess.

II. The reality of joylessness

We can lose our joy without losing our salvation. Psalm 51:12 says, "Restore to me the joy of your salvation."
- Often you can see the lack of joy on a person's face. Stand where I stand on Sundays and look at people's faces and when what's in their hearts shows on their faces, they need joy!
-Joy is the surest sign of the presence of the Lord.

Do you know what I learned? Some people disturb your joy.
- I'm awake most of the time. I enjoy life and try to spread a little joy when I can.
-Prov. 17:22

-I said that sin will steal your joy, but so will selfishness.

-Charles Allen tells the story of a fisherman friend who told him that you never need a lid on your shrimp bucket. When a crab climbs up the side of the bucket, another crab will reach up and pull it down.
- A man dreamed of heaven and hell. In both places, people sat on either side of a long table filled with the finest foods. But people in both places had two-meter-long forks and knives on their arms. The people in heaven were fat and happy because they reached across the table to feed their brothers, while the people in hell were thin and complained. They refused to feed each other and could not feed themselves.

Someone berated Charles Spurgeon for using too much humor in his messages. He replied, "If you knew how hard it is for me to restrain myself from saying more, you would appreciate my humor more."

The language Jesus uses to fulfill His joy in us depicts a person driving an empty car to a gas station and then filling up the tank and then running over a few more.
- When David said, "Lord, restore to me the joy of your salvation," he was saying, "Fill, Lord!"

III. The remedy for joylessness

Why was Jesus happy? How can we have joy?

1. Jesus had an abiding trust in the Father's love and care.

Jesus must have been amazed at the fearfulness of the people. So he said, "Look at the lilies as they grow. They don't work and don't spin. But Solomon is not dressed like one of them.”

2. Jesus was always looking for what people could become and saw their potential.

He looked at Zacchaeus, Simon Peter, the woman caught in adultery, AND ME, and saw what could become of us if we surrendered our lives to Him.

3. Jesus was committed to his Father.

After the apostles were beaten and commanded to speak no more in the name of Jesus,
Acts 5:41 says, “They left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they had been counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.”

You can't be a happy believer if you only halfheartedly surrender to Jesus!

Jesus prays that we will live holy lives
Johannes 17:14-16

The words "keep" or "kept" are used four times in six verses.
-In John 17:11-13 Jesus prays for our safety; in John 17:15 Jesus prays that we would live holy lives.
- Notice that in verse 15 Jesus prays that the Father would keep us from "the evil one". I think the KJV comes closest to the expression of the original language. The Greek text simply says, "Keep them from evil." It could refer to an evil "thing" or it could refer to an evil "person." This is why some of the translations say, “Keep them from the evil (Satan), but I believe He is talking about the evil that is in the world because of the world system, both Satan and the evil of the world system that is controlled by Satan.

I want to share three things with you:

I. Our Lord's objection – John 17:15

Jesus says he is NOT praying that the Father would quickly bring believers out of this world through death and into heaven.
-He could do that. He could take us to heaven the moment we are saved and we would not have to put up with the evil world system; we would not have to put up with Satan and his tactics; we would not have to face temptations.

Why did Jesus leave us in this world after we were saved?
-Don't miss this! There are two main reasons why Jesus leaves us in this world after we have been saved:

A. He didn't save us just to take us out of this world, He saved us to take the world out of us!

When God took his people out of Egypt, he could have taken them straight to the promised land. Instead, he led them through the wilderness. Why? To test and prove them. German 8:2-3, 15
– I want you to notice that it took the Lord much longer to get Egypt out of his people than it took to get his people out of Egypt! no. 11:1a, 4-5

Not only did Jesus save us to take us out of this world to heaven, He also saved us to take the world out of us before taking us to heaven.
-1. John 5:4; Room. 8:37-39

B. Second, Jesus left us in the world because He had work for us in the world.

Our Lord left believers in the world to win unbelievers to himself. We are to be salt and light, so that those who are in the world may believe in him through our word about him.
-As he prepares for his saints to be in heaven, he has power to bring us into glory.

II. Our Lord's Purpose - John 17:14, 16

Our Lord says it twice: "You are not of this world." What does that mean? That is, although they are in the world, the world is not in them. You are holy in an unholy world. You are separated from the world.

Again, when I say "world," I don't mean the material world on which we live and move.
- Nothing that God has created in the heavens above or on the earth below is in itself harmful to the soul of man. On the contrary, sun, moon and stars; the mountains, valleys and plains; the seas, lakes and rivers; the animal and vegetable creation; all are in themselves “very good” (Gen 1:31).
- All of this is filled with lessons of God's wisdom and power, proclaiming daily: "Created by God's divine hand!"

The world Jesus denounces is the world system controlled by Satan. This "world" is the enemy of the Christian's soul. It is in direct contrast to the things of Christ.

A. Listen to what Paul says:

Romans 12:2
● "And do not conform to this WORLD, but change through the renewal of your thinking" (NKJV)
● “Do not imitate the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” (NLT)
● "Don't let the world mold you into its shape" (Phillips)

Galatians 1:4
● “He died for our sins as God our Father planned to save us from this wicked world in which we live” (NLT)

Eph. 2:1-2
● “Once you were dead, forever damned because of your many sins. You used to live just like the rest of the world, full of sin, obedient to Satan, the mighty prince of the power of the air. He is the Spirit working in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God.” (NLT)

B. Listen to what James says:

James 1:27 “Pure and undefiled religion before God and his Father is this: to visit orphans
and widows in their need, and to keep themselves undefiled from the world."

James 4:4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Don't you know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? So whoever wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.”

Jesus prays for two things in this passage: He wants us to be holy while we live in this world and He wants us to be separate from the world.

1. 1. Petrus 1:13-16

-We are told to ILLUSTRATE holiness – be holy in all your conduct and IMITATE holiness – for I Am holy!

God says, "Be like me." To be holy is to be like God. Holiness means being filled with God in every part of your life. What could be better than that?
-People need to see God in us!

How do we do that?

1. We need a new mindset - 1 Peter 1:13a

"Gird up the loins of your mind" means to focus your mind; fix your mind; Prepare your mind for action.
-It means we have to control our mind. Spiritual problems always start with a lazy, undisciplined mind.
- First we think it, then we think about it and then we do it. So it is with anger, bitterness, lust and every other sin.

2. We need a new focus - 1 Peter 1:13b

Be sober or self-possessed. Be free from anything that clouds our moral or spiritual judgment.
-Rome. 14:23b "Everything that is not of faith is sin." If you have doubts, accept them.

3. We need a new goal - I Peter 1:13c

Pay attention to the price. Keep an eye on Jesus. The Christian life is not a 100 meter sprint; It's more like a marathon. Keep running and don't stop until you see Jesus standing at the finish line. The race is so hard, so long, so difficult and sometimes so daunting. You'll never get done if you don't keep your goal in mind. Don't get distracted.

4.We need a new lifestyle - I Peter 1:14

Don't slip back into your old life.

5. We need a new standard - 1 Peter 1:15-16

If you're a Christian, there should be a family resemblance.
-The older I get, the more I look like my father. Being holy means others see Jesus in me.

2. Being separate - 2 Cor. 6:17

Remember that God's eyes are on us and a judgment day is coming.

III. observation of our Lord

Our Lord does not remove us from this world when we are saved because He wants us to represent Him on this earth.

But you and I must be holy and separate from the world at all times or there are some dangers.

1. There is a risk that doing good will become boring

This is especially true when we work for a long time without any visible success. It can be discouraging. Satan is always quick to take advantage of such circumstances. He'll say, "What's the use, you're not going anywhere. Give up everything.” Yet God is faithful. He will not forget our labor of love.

2. There is a risk of relapse

Don't allow your heart to grow cold to the Lord. Relapses begin in the heart. If your heart is not warm toward God, it is because you have distanced yourself from Him.

3. There is a risk of satanic attacks

Satan has many arrows in his quiver, many are poisonous arrows. Lies could be told. Some threaten to ruin the testimony.

Remember that Jesus is praying for you. John 17:14-16

One of the best prayers you can pray for yourself is, "Lord, keep me clean and keep me close!"

Jesus prays for our sanctification
Johannes 17:17-19

I want us to remember that what Jesus is praying for us in His high priestly prayer here in John 17, He is praying for us now, sitting at the right hand of His Father.
● He prays for our safety.
● He prays for our happiness.
● He prays that we live holy lives.

Now he is praying for our sanctification.

I want us to see four things about sanctification:

I. The Importance of Sanctification - John 17:17

The word sanctification has lost most of its popularity in our day. We hardly ever use the word anymore.
- Black communities still use the word. They will say, "I am saved and sanctified."

What does it mean to be sanctified?

To be holy means "a separation from common use" or "a separation from the unholy." It carries the idea that something or an object or even a person is withdrawn from use by the world.
- You may remember the incident of Belshazzar, the king of Babylon, using the gold and silver vessels from the temple for his drunken party. He used what was holy for an unholy purpose, to praise other gods. Judgment fell on him at once when he, an unholy man, dared to use what was holy for a profane purpose.

But there is more positive meaning. To be sanctified means “to be set apart unto the Lord, clearly used unto the Lord. It has a purpose which is to glorify God alone.

The high priest had a gold plaque engraved on his headdress with the words "Holy to the Lord." It was a constant reminder that this man should be engaged in sacred duties, that all his hands should touch, and all his actions should bring glory to the Lord. It reminded him how to live, act, and think each day as one set apart to the Lord.

Both in the O.T. and in the New Testament the word sanctify means "to be set apart, set apart from sin, and devote oneself wholly to God."

1Gen.2:3 - God sanctified the Sabbath day; that is, he set it aside for his own purpose.
Ex.13:2 - God sanctified the firstborn of man and beast, because God said, "It is mine."
3Ex.31:13 - God sanctified the people of Israel as his own property.
4.Lev.21:8 - God sanctified the priest to minister in His courts.

Notice John 17:11-12a. Jesus prayed that his people would be "kept" from the world; Separate from the world and separate for His purpose.

There are three stages of our sanctification:

A. Our sanctification is positional

We were set apart from sin and to God the moment we were saved.
- Positionally and in the eyes of God, we are already seated with Christ in the heavenly places. It's a fait accompli that happened at salvation and something we can never lose.

B. Our sanctification is progressive

1 Peter 3:15 "Continue to sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts." You are positionally sanctified, act now in accordance with your position.
- As the Christian submits to the Lord and seeks to be set apart to Him, the Holy Spirit empowers and helps him to grow in grace and become more Christlike.
- Sanctification molds the believer to look and act like a believer. This working of the Spirit continually reproduces the life of Christ in the child of God.
-2 Peter 3:18; 2 Cor. 7:1 (Get On); 2 Cor. 3:18

C. Our sanctification shall be perfect - I Thess. 5:23; 1 John 3:2

Note John 17:19 What does it mean that Christ sanctified himself? He's infinitely holy, so he couldn't add anything to his holiness. His character and demeanor were flawless, so what is he talking about?

- Notice John 17:1,4 Jesus says that He was set apart for the Father's purpose of becoming God in the flesh and the hour has come to give His life, for He was born of the Father to die for the sins of the people apart. His sacrifice will bring forgiveness and salvation to all people.
-Now He is about to be set apart for another purpose, His mission on earth is almost complete, but He is about to begin a new mission in Heaven for those He has redeemed. He will intercede for them and be their advocate. He comes now to devote himself to his new task.

By the way, there are times when we need to rededicate our lives to God's purpose for us. We should do it publicly sometimes.

II. The Means of Sanctification—John 17:17

Many things can help us in our Christian life, but the ONLY thing our Lord designates as the means or medium of our sanctification is His truth; his word.
- The Word of God must be heard, studied, meditated upon, accepted and applied to the Christian family of life.
- We cannot trade anything else for God's Word - no commentaries, no reading of sermons by great men of God. There is no substitute for the Word of God.
- The Word of God will cleanse our ways, direct our paths, encourage our hearts, mold our faith, inspire our minds, refresh our spirits. Nothing can replace God's Word!

III. The Motive for Sanctification—John 17:18

Jesus was sent into the world to seek and save the lost. Now he is preparing to return to his father. Now he says: "As the Father sent me into the world to seek and to save what was lost, so I am sending you into the world to seek and to save what was lost.
-Therefore He gave us the Great Commission: “Go into all the world, or as you go into all the world… You shall be my witnesses.
-We are to be His representative; His ambassadors; His spokesman, with the express aim of reaching and winning the lost.

IV. The model for our sanctification - John 17:19

Jesus is our perfect example to follow.
-He was in contact with the world without being contaminated by the world.
- He was both "the friend of sinners" and "separated from sinners". Like a doctor, he came into contact with an infection, but he was not contaminated by it.

Jesus prays for our unity
Johannes 17:20-22

We come to the final section of the High Priestly Lord's Prayer.
● In John 17:1-5, Jesus prays for himself
● In John 17:6-19 Jesus prays for his disciples.
● In John 17:20-26 Jesus prays for the whole church.

The first thing Jesus prays for his church is that we be united. Unity for His people is the great burden of our Lord's heart. He wants us to get along.
- Unity is what God has for His people in the O.T. wanted. hp 133:1-2a

One would expect brothers to get along, but sometimes they don't. In Gen. 45:24 Joseph had revealed himself to his brothers and he sends them to fetch his father Jacob to live near Joseph in Egypt. As his brothers are about to leave, Joseph admonishes them, “Be careful not to quarrel as you journey.” We all need to heed this counsel.

The sad fact is that Christians don't always get along. Even our Lord's disciples were quarreling with one another, and the Lord Jesus was right with them.
-In Acts, Paul and Barnabas, two giants in the early church, had a dispute over John Mark, and some of the N.T. Churches broke Paul's heart with their disputes and divisions.
- Spiritual Unity is a rare good. No wonder our Lord included it in his prayer.

Much of our Lord's Prayer had to do with relationships.
● Jesus prayed that we would have joy; this relationship in our own heart.
● He prayed for our safety; our relationship between us and the Father
● He prayed for our holiness; our relationship with God.
● Now he prays for our unity; our relationship with other Christians in the Church.

Someone said that Christians need warmth and fellowship, but too often we are like porcupines on a cold night. They need each other's warmth, but they mustn't get too close or they'll get stuck!

What kind or unity did Jesus pray for when he prayed that we would all be one?

1. He does NOT pray for ecumenism; that is, to bring together all the churches with their different beliefs and unite them in ONE church organizational body. Of course, that would mean compromising some fundamental beliefs and beliefs. "No amount of rotten eggs can make a good omelet."

2. He does NOT pray for unity. The Lord never wanted us to be a cookie cutter religion where we all dress alike, look alike, and speak alike. You can tie two cats' hind legs together and throw them down a clothesline together, but that doesn't mean they will be one in spirit.

We can understand the unity that Jesus is talking about if we look at the different images that he gives
of the community throughout the N.T.

1. The church is described as the family of God.

Salvation is described as being born into God's spiritual family. We are his spiritual children, he is our father, we are brothers and sisters in Christ.

2. The church is described as a community.

We have many things in common because we have the same Savior and Lord.

3. The Church is described as the body of Christ.

A part of the body simply cannot survive if it is separated from the whole. A family emphasizes relationships; A community emphasizes sharing; A panel emphasizes the cooperation. This togetherness enables unity.

Three things I want to share with you about Unity:

I. The pattern of our unity - John 17:11, 21, 22

In Eph. 4:1-6 Paul declares that God binds His holy people together as one by a sevenfold spiritual bond:

1. One Body: Since Pentecost, Jews and Gentiles have been brought into one fellowship in only one way: trust in Christ.

2. One Spirit: The same Holy Spirit gives life to us all and indwells us all.

3. A Hope in Our Calling: All Christians share the same hope of eternal life and heaven and of being transformed into the sinless image of Christ when he returns.

4. One Lord: Jesus is Lord over all believers because we all belong to him.

5. One Faith: Not believing faith, but truth or doctrine revealed in the N.T.

6.A Baptism: Water baptism is an outward sign of our inner faith and publicly identifies us with Christ.

7. One God and Father of us all: As children of God, through faith in his Son, we look to one Father who is above all and who works through us and lives in us all.

II. The purpose of our unity - John 17:21

When we work on unity, we work on evangelism, because unity draws people to Christ.
● Johannes 13:35
● It was said of this young church: "See how they love one another."

● The world saw that there was something different about these Christians.
One of the greatest witnesses for the world is when we get along in unity. We need unity for the sake of service.

It's very disturbing when we start slandering and criticizing each other.

To dwell above with saints we love, That will be grace and glory.
Living down with saints, we know, well, that's another story!

III. The power of our unity

How is unity achieved? Eph. 4:1-3

1. With ALL humility

It's the word "humility," and humility is essential to unity. Aside from love, humility is what sets us apart from the world the most. Humility is one of the hardest qualities to learn and manifest daily because of our ancient sinful nature. Yet Jesus described himself as “meek and lowly in heart.” He did NOT come to be served, but to serve and give himself as a ransom for all.
- Watch Jesus gently and gently wash the feet of His disciples. Humility is an attitude of heart that recognizes God's love and value for others and is willing to put the needs of others first.

2. With ALL gentleness or gentleness

Humility and gentleness go hand in hand. Where humility is an attitude, gentleness is a derivative action.
- Gentle people are not harsh or rude to others; Nor do they seek to impose their own will. Instead, they are considerate and kind and don't complain.

3. With long suffering or long temper

It's patience to piss people off. Patience gives people time. It creates an atmosphere of grace that allows us to fail and grow, make mistakes and learn.

4. Forbearance in love

This is the action side of patience, expanding into forgiveness, understanding, and loving tolerance. We treat those who have hurt us with grace, remembering how gracious God was to us when we failed and hurt Him.
- These are not easy things, but for the sake of unity they should be a part of our lives.

It's crazy not to get along.

One day a man was visiting an insane asylum and noticed that all the madmen were out in the field, but there was only one warden. He asked the guard, "Aren't you scared?" The guard said, "Absolutely not."

He said, "Don't you think that these people could unite you and overrun you and break out of the asylum since you're the only one here?" He said, "It's impossible." The man asked, "Why is this impossible?" The guard replied, "Because madmen don't unite."

If I'm a person who doesn't want to get along with others and wants to put our differences behind, what does that mean to me?

Have you allowed a silly argument to break out between you and another Christian?
-Johannes 13:34-35

Jesus prays for the homecoming of the saints
Johannes 17:24-26

Heaven will be the ultimate experience for the child of God.
● Salvation is a life-changing experience. There is nothing like it. When we trust Christ; receive him in our hearts; our sins are forgiven; are placed in the body of Christ, his church; it is a miracle of his grace. I've heard people say about salvation, "It was so good to be saved, I'd love to do it over and over again." I know what people mean by that, but we can only be saved once.

● Being filled with the Holy Ghost is a wonderful experience. If you have been filled with the Spirit you will know what it is, but it is difficult to explain to those who have never been filled with his Spirit.

● Passing through trials is necessary for God's children to grow and mature. Going through trials is not fun, but in the midst of trials we are sure of His presence with us, and we usually see in hindsight that the trials were good for us and matured us.

● Everything the Saint experiences is designed to make us more like the Lord Jesus, but the ultimate experience for the child of God will be heaven.

The Bible describes our home-going as "the blessed hope." Then the Bible describes the lost man as hopeless. I Thess. 4:13-18.
For the lost, hope is little more than "wishful thinking" or the "power of positive thinking." Rather, it is a desire that may have no reason or basis for actualization.
- I can say “I hope it won't rain this week”, but I have no promise, certainty or confidence that my hope will come true. It's just a wish based on my personal wish.

The Bible speaks of hope centered on the Lord. As the Lord is faithful and sure, so our hope in him is sure trust.
● PS. 38:15 "For in you, O Lord, I hope."
● PS. 146:5 "How blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God."
● Jer. 17:17 "You are my hope in the day of evil."
● Col. 1:27 "Christ in you, the hope of glory."
● Titus 2:11-14; 3:3-7; Have. 6:19

our hope; our trust; our assurance is in Christ and in His promises. Jesus promised that those who belong to him will be in heaven with him. John 14:1-3; 2 Cor. 5:8

As Jesus concludes his high priestly prayer, he speaks about:

I. The Assurance of Heaven—John 17:24

Our Lord's desire for us is that we shall be with Him in Heaven. That is exciting! Saints have always spoken and sung about going to heaven to be with Jesus.

When the trumpet of the Lord sounds and time is no more
And the morning breaks forever bright and beautiful
When the saved of the earth will gather on the other shore
And over there the role is called, I'm in!

On that bright and cloudless morning when the dead in Christ shall rise
And share the glory of His resurrection
When his chosen ones will gather to their home beyond heaven
And over there the role is called, I'm in!

Let us work for the master from dawn to sunset,
Let's speak of all His wonderful love and care;
Then when all life is over and our work on earth is done
And over there the role is called, I'm in!

Sing the wondrous love of Jesus, Sing his mercy and grace;
In the mansions, bright and blessed, He will make a place for us.

So let's be true and true, trusting, serving every day;
Just a glimpse of Him in glory will repay life's labors.

Next to the price in front of us! Soon we shall see its beauty
Soon the pearly gates will open, we will enter the golden streets.

When we all get to heaven, what a day of joy that will be!
When we all see Jesus, we will sing and shout victory.

Heaven is not a dream of the future. Heaven is real and we will be with it!

II. The Change in Heaven

Think about it: When Jesus ascended back to heaven after His resurrection, things were different in heaven. For the first time Jesus was in human form in heaven.

Jesus told the woman at the well, "God is a spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth."
- Now listen to Hebrews 10:4-5, 10-12 (But this MAN); John 1:14
-John saw the glorified God - the man in heaven - Rev. 1:12-18; Revelation 4:1-6, 9-11

III. The celebration in heaven - John 17:24

"So They SEE My Glory That You Have Given Me"

Moses was allowed to see the "rear parts" of God's glory. Steven, dying for his faith as the rocks slammed into his body, caught a "glimpse" of his glory. But we will SEE His glory!

Dottie Rambo used I Thess. 4:16-17 to write, "We shall see him."

Heaven will unfold and prepare His entrance;
The stars will applaud Him with thunders of praise.
The sweet light in His eyes will enrich those who wait,
And then we'll see Him face to face.

And we will see Him, we will
see him
face to face in all His glory;
And we will see him, yes we will
see him
Face to face, our Redeemer and Lord.

The angels will sound his call
The sleeping ones will rise from their slumber
And those that remain are converted into a
And then we'll see Him face to face.

One group wrote a song and tried to imagine what they would do when they saw the Lord in glory for the first time. They write as if they are speaking to the Lord.

I can only imagine
How it will be
When I go
By your side.

I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
if your face
is in front of me
I can only imagine.

I can only imagine.

Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel?
Will I dance for you, Jesus, or be silent in awe of you?
Will I stand in your presence or will I fall to my knees?
Will I sing Hallelujah, will I even be able to speak?
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
I can only imagine
When that day comes
When I find myself
stand in the son.

I can only imagine
If I'll do anything
is forever
worship you forever
I can only imagine.

I can only imagine.

IV. The Choice of Heaven

If we go to heaven, it is because we made our choice for Jesus here on earth.

Here's a person who says, “I'm not so sure about Jesus. I just don't know if what the Bible says about Jesus is true. After all, there are many religions and they all say they are the true religion. I think I'll just wait until I die and then when I meet Jesus, I'll trust Him.”

That's not how it works. If you don't choose Jesus before you die, it will be too late.
- You must trust what Jesus said about himself - John 14:6

Drinking the cup: treason
Johannes 18:1-11

Our Lord Jesus was a man of great courage. We never see him shrink from the task of salvation set before him. On the contrary, we see Him standing tall and carrying out His Heavenly Father's plan of salvation without flinching or failing. He never tried to avoid or avoid it. He faced it head-on.
- Our Lord bravely faced the “hour” for which He came on earth. There was a firm determination of his will, heart, and mind to drink the cup that the Father would give him on behalf of sinners.
- Throughout the Gospel of John we find references to our Lord saying, "My hour is not yet come." But when we come to John 12:23, He declares, "The hour IS come for the Son of Man to be glorified."
- Note John 12:27-28a; John 13:1a; John 17:11–21–22—When it came to our Lord's desire to drink the cup, we could use words like expectation, diligence, determination, purpose. He was master of the moment.


I. The Place of Betrayal - John 18:1-2

We see both our Lord's dominion and control in his choice of the place where he would meet his captors. The Lord deliberately chose Gethsemane.
-John's explicit mention as a garden in John 18:1 suggests that John has in mind a deliberate comparison with the original Garden of Eden. The symbolism is this:

• The first Adam began his life in a garden. Christ, the last Adam, came into a garden at the end of his life.
• Adam fell in Eden. In Gethsemane Jesus triumphed.
• Adam hid himself in Eden. In Gethsemane our Lord presented himself boldly.
This symbolism is no coincidence. It was an assurance that Christ was in control.

To reinforce this symbolism, John mentions at John 18:1 that “Jesus set out with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley.
- The Kidron Valley was less than a quarter mile from the Upper Room. It was literally a drain leading from the temple altar down to the Kidron Gorge to drain the blood of the sacrifices. Up to 250,000 lambs were slaughtered at Passover time. When Jesus and his disciples crossed the Kidron, it was red with sacrificial blood.

There is a gap between verses 1 and 2 that is filled by the accounts of the other gospels. From there we understand that in Gethsemane Christ was overcome with unspeakable terror as he grappled with the reality of what was to come.
• Mate. 26:37-38 "My soul is exceedingly grieved, even to the point of death."
• Mark 14:35 Jesus fell repeatedly (literal translation) "praying that if it were possible the hour might pass from him."
• Luke 22:44 “And being in fear, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”

• Most of us have never sweated while praying, let alone drops of sweat like blood.

It was not the PAIN that terrified Jesus, nor was it the SHAME, but the fact that He would pay the penalty for our sin, which involved His Father turning his back on Jesus and forsaking Him.

Drinking the cup means going through a difficult experience. We sometimes use a phrase when someone faces a consequence because of a mistake, and we say, "He's going to have to take his medicine."

It is interesting to note that some trophies are designed like goblets to symbolize the trials and tribulations that have been swallowed and now the winner enjoys the thrill of victory.

(Video) Sunday PM- July 3, 2022 - Study to Show Yourself Approved - Austin Johnson

II. The perpetrator of the betrayal - John 18:3

Judas will point to Jesus by kissing him on the cheek.
- We are told that there was a "band of men" or a "company of troops" with Judas. It's the word "cohort". The soldiers of the cohort were 600 fully armed men, each wielding a short sword to protect against mob violence or rebellion. They wanted to arrest Jesus in front of the people so there would be no riot, but they were prepared for the worst.
- There were also officers of the chief priest. That was the temple police, they were there with clubs. They were the main arresting officers since Jesus' destination was to be brought before the high priest after the arrest. They came ready for the opposition of Jesus and his followers.
- What a sight that must have been. Six hundred men with lanterns, torches and weapons on their way to Jesus at midnight!

III. Protection in Treason - John 18:4-9

Note John 18:4 Jesus was not surprised. He knew when they would come and
why they would come He steps forward to meet them and to recognize himself openly.

Jesus asked them, "Whom are you looking for? They said, Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus replied, “I AM!” “They fell back and fell to the ground.”

Jesus answered with His divine name "I AM". Why would anyone, especially a large group of soldiers, fall to the ground in the face of an unarmed man unless there was something unusual about what he said and who he is?
– I agree with some expositors who would say that Jesus opened the window of divine revelation just for a moment and revealed his glory to this group of sinners.
-It was just a moment when He revealed His glory, just as He did in the temple when Isaiah saw the Lord high and exalted and His answer was, "Woe is me, for I am destroyed!"

In fact, the 600 soldiers did not arrest Jesus; He arrested her.
-I wonder what went through Judas' mind as he struggled to his feet.
- Earlier Jesus had said – John 10:17-18

He asked her a second time, "Who do you want?"

- There can be little doubt that the soldiers intended to arrest both the Lord and His disciples; But when Jesus identified himself, he said, "I am the one you want. Let these men go.” He protected his disciples.

IV. The Protector in Betrayal - John 18:10-11

That's really smart, Peter. They are surrounded by 600 men with swords and clubs. Do you think you can take on everyone?

But to tell you the truth, I like Peter's cum. At least one blow was struck for Jesus. But the truth is that Peter's hasty actions could have destroyed the Church.

I can almost see Malchus standing there, eyes wide, blood spurting through his fingers and hundreds of steel blades ringing from their scabbards in a horrific symphony.

Jesus said, "Peter, put up your sword!" The word means "throw it down, not caring where it falls."

"Shouldn't I drink from the cup my father gave me? It is His will for me and I rejoice in doing His will.”

Earlier, Jesus had wrestled with the terror of the cup, saying, "Not my will, but Thy be done." Now He confidently says, "Shall I not drink it?"

How does this relate to us? Gethsemane are a part of the life of believers. We all know stressful times when the cup seems to be too much.
- Just as Jesus controlled his own destiny, he also controls ours.

His Gethsemane was not a tragedy, and neither is our Gethsemane. That doesn't mean there won't be wounds and pains and needs, but in the end "we know that God works in all things for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28).

Malchus: The Last Miracle
Johannes 18:1-11

If you had been a reporter covering the arrest of the Lord Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, you might have reported on it from several interested parties.
- From Caiaphas' point of view, you might have reported the arrest of our Lord as a triumph: "At last we have seized him!"
- From the captain of the troop of soldiers, the report could read: "Fourteenth Nisan, 11:30 p.m., arrested a prisoner, Jesus of Nazareth."
-But if you were the apostle John, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, you could report: "From beginning to end, Jesus - not his captors - was entirely responsible for the situation."

It was Jesus who hesitated in the garden while the arresting party sought him.

It was he who gave himself voluntarily.

It was Jesus demonstrating power over the soldiers.

It was Jesus who showed mercy to his disciples and mercy to his enemies.

In the garden came 600 soldiers, armed with lanterns and guns, for every unarmed man. If he had chosen to resist them, no weapon would have sufficed. Jesus was arrested because he willingly gave himself over to death to save us.

This incident must have impressed the disciples because it is recorded in all four gospels. Only John tells us that it was Peter who swung the sword at Malchus and that the servant's name was Malchus. Only Luke tells us that Jesus healed his ear. When we think about all that happened that night, the betrayal and the arrest, the disciples never forgot what happened to Malchus. Undoubtedly, it contains important lessons for us.

I. The cause of the miracle - John 18:10-11

This is the last miracle performed before going to the cross. In some ways it is the most beautiful and touching of all wonders.

Jesus had preached: “Love your enemies. Do good to those who have hurt you.” Now he would practice what he preached.

When they grabbed Jesus, we can understand Peter's desire to resist, but at this point we remember James' words: "Let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger. For human anger does not accomplish God's righteousness" (James 1:19-20).

- Not many of us are good at being slow to anger. Our wrath and God's justice generally move in opposite directions.

When we get angry, we need to ask ourselves, "What am I afraid of?"

- Most anger stems from fear, and most of our fear comes from the perception that we are out of control or losing control.
- Think about it for a moment. As long as we are in control and in the driver's seat and things are going our way, we rarely get angry. But let things get out of hand and fear take over. It is a small step from fear to impulsive anger, and all sorts of evils arise out of sudden anger.

Peter takes his sword, strikes a man on the head but only cuts his ear, and Jesus tells Peter to raise his sword, for all who live by the sword will die by the sword.

- Brute force does not advance the kingdom of Christ. We cannot do God's work by urging people to submit. There may be some short-term results, but it always backfires in the end because the use of brute force causes us not to truly believe God.

Jesus said he could call twelve legions of angels or 72,000 angels and 72,000 angels could handle 600 soldiers.
-Well, if Jesus had that kind of power, why didn't he use it? Because he knew that what happened had to happen in order to fulfill God's plan.

Jesus did not need Peter's help. He didn't want to be saved. Jesus can take care of himself.
-Listen: Jesus didn't die because it wasn't his fault. Pilate's army could not have taken him unless he was willing to be taken.

The word Luke uses for "ear" means "part of the ear." The servant could have lived a full life without part of his ear. It wouldn't have affected his hearing. Worse, the damage would
were cosmetic.
- Jesus would not even tolerate the loss of an ear in His defense. The only blood that would be spilled would be his own.
-Luke tells us that Jesus "touched" his ear. The word means "hold and press". Jesus probably reached down, took the cut piece, held it in place, and pressed it.

Peter stood up for Jesus, but in the wrong way and in the wrong spirit, and that harms another. Jesus must heal the pain.
- How many times we stand up for Jesus as His disciples, but in the wrong way and with the wrong spirit, and we hurt and hurt others and Jesus has to heal the hurts we have caused.

- Our tongues become like swords and say cutting, ugly things. Sometimes our motives are like swords that destroy rather than build. Sometimes our actions become like swords and we react rashly.

II. The character of the miracle

There are some interesting facts about this miracle that we don't find in the other miracles.

1. There was no request for the miracle. Our Lord just did it.

But if Jesus had not healed him, the accusers could have said at his trial: "Thanks to one of his disciples, this servant of the high priest is missing part of his ear." Our Lord gave no reason to accuse Him, even indirectly, to His enemies.

2. The miracle was performed on an enemy, an unbeliever, one of the groups that were there to arrest him.

3. The miracle was done to correct a mistake, a harmful error, committed by one of his disciples.

By healing this man, Jesus made it clear that he would not take revenge on those who killed him. Jesus not only showed mercy and grace, but also forgiveness for those who wronged him.

III. The consequences of the miracle - John 18:11

I can almost see Malchus on the cross; not earless, but whole! Someone asks him, "What do you mean by these three fellows on the cross?" He said, "I saw the one in the middle last night in Gethsemane. I was one of the soldiers who seized him. I saw Judas kiss him. That was our signal to hold him tight. As I did so, one of his disciples tried to kill me with his sword. I moved just in time; He only caught part of my ear. Then the man at the middle cross took my ear, put it back in place and gently healed me. There was something special about that touch. He really healed me. I truly believe he is the son of God; not only because he healed me, but because he changed my heart and my life.”

He can and will do the same for you!

The man without flaws
Johannes 18:12-14, 19-24, 28-40

This old world has seen some good men; Men who came into the world and made it brighter and better by their presence.
-They lived their lives for God and for others. They blessed the lives they touched, and as they left this earth heaven became richer and earth poorer.
-But each of these men, no matter how good or useful, had some flaw.
- The Bible says: “There is no righteous man on earth who does good and does not sin.” There is a flaw in every character, a sin in every life. No human has ever lived a perfect life.

But there is one who is more than just human. He was the Godman - man and deity perfectly combined.
-In Him there was no guilt at all. That man was Jesus; who lived in a world full of sin and yet was never tainted by it.
- He was tempted more than anyone; yet he never gave in to temptation.
- The life of Jesus was an open book. He asked, "Which of you convinces me of sin?" "Which of you can point out a sin in my life?"
-Jesus was the only man without flaws.

I. The treatment

-Six hundred armed soldiers came into the garden to arrest the unarmed Jesus; yet it was Jesus who was in full control of everything that was going on.
-John is the gospel that shows and proves that our Lord is God. Matthew, Mark and Luke show us the human aspects of Jesus; John the divine aspects.
- John tells us that Jesus went into the garden with his disciples; but only Matthew, Mark and Luke tell us WHAT He prayed.

Let me tell you how Jesus was responsible for everything that was going on:
• He knew that Judas would go into the garden first to look for him. Jesus went there so that they could take him with ease.
• Jesus asked them who they wanted to arrest. Twice He made them say "Jesus of Nazareth," and He said, "Then set these other men free."
• When he announced that he was Jesus, all the soldiers fell on their backs and did not get up until he spoke to them again.
• When Peter cut off Malchus' ear, Jesus told him to raise his sword because he voluntarily went with them. Then He said, "I could summon 12 legions of angels - 72,000. In the O.T. an angel destroyed 180,000 people in one night. All heaven was ready to act at His command.

-John 18:19 They asked Jesus about two things: His disciples and His teaching
(a) His disciples
• How many do you have? Who are you? Jesus ignored this question. He never answered her. He knew that if he gave them their names, they too could be tried and subjected to the same treatment he knew they would receive.

• Wasn't that just like our Savior? He defended those he loved. Likewise, He will defend you and me.
• Martin Luther fell asleep one night worried about his sins. He wondered if he was saved, then he had a dream. He saw the recording angel standing at a large board. Martin Luther's name was on the plaque and the angel made a list of Luther's sins. They were so numerous and so magnificent that he felt he would never be forgiven. But as he stood in despair, he saw a pierced hand come into view. That hand wrote these words over Luther's list of sins: "The blood of Jesus Christ cleanse you from all sin." And as he watched in amazement, the blood dripped from the injured hand and washed the record clean. Luther awoke rejoicing in the knowledge that his sins were forgiven.

(b.) His teaching John 18:19-23
• This is the first recorded blow that the holy Son of God receives at the hands of sinners.
• Remember! Jesus, the almighty, high and holy Son of God, and that low dust worm has the audacity to smite Him!
• If this had happened to us, our anger would have flared up and we would have hit back. Jesus only spoke. – John 18:23

II. The Process

- Jesus was subjected to six trials that night; Three religious, three civil, and each of them illegal.
-The accusations against Jesus? The Jewish religious process is for blasphemy; the Roman civil process was high treason.

Let me show you why the processes were illegal:

(1) An arrest for a capital offense must, by its own right, be made in broad daylight, not at night. They ignored the law.
(2) The arrest for a capital crime may not be based on statements made by the perpetrator's henchman - because if the accused was a criminal, so were his followers. The law was ignored. It was Judas who accused him.
(3) No Jewish trials may be held at night; that is, between 6:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. Two of the three Jewish trials took place between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m.
(4) A hearing must never be held in front of only one person so that bias or partiality can be avoided.
(5) Members of the Jewish court, after hearing the accused of a capital crime, may not render immediate judgment, but instead must return to their homes for two days and nights on light fare, drink only light wine, and sleep well. Then they should return and hear the testimony against the accused again and cast their vote.
(6) The Sanhedrin must vote individually, younger first, so as not to be influenced by the older men in the council. On the third try, everyone voted at the same time.
(7) The accused has the right of defense. No defense was given.
(8) Most importantly, there was no proven charge against the prisoner. In fact, the judge said three times that he found no fault in Jesus—John 18:38; John 19:4–6

In the end, he was only convicted because he voluntarily answered a question put to him
the High Priest in which He claimed to be the divine Son of God and the Messiah.

- Pilate said Jesus was innocent! Why didn't he release him?
- Up to this point, Pilate has done nothing wrong. He questioned him, examined him, he came to the right judgment.
-Why didn't he release him?
• He saw the mood of the people – And he was a coward.
• He wanted to please people - and he was a corrupt politician.
• Letting Jesus go would have damaged him politically and financially and he was not willing to pay the price. If you let him go, you're not Caesar's friend.
• His decision was influenced by the crowd.

Too many make their decision about Christ because of the crowd; what others will say. They know that he is God's son; that he will save her, but the crowd doesn't want them to make that decision for him; so they don't.

God provided seven witnesses to the innocence of Jesus Christ. Seven is the number of perfection in the Bible, so God provided full testimony of our Lord's innocence.

1. Judas referred to Christ as the innocent blood - Matthew. 27:3-4
2. Pilate's wife calls the Lord "the just one" - Matthew. 27:19
3.Herod said the Lord did nothing worthy of death - Luke 23:15
4. The thief on the cross said he did nothing wrong - Luke 23:41
5. The centurion called the Lord a righteous man - Luke 23-47
6. Peter declared that Jesus committed no sin; neither was deceit found in His mouth - 1 Peter 2:22
7. Three times Pilate said he found no fault in Jesus - John 18:38; John 19:4–6

In addition, John calls Him the righteous; Peter calls him the Holy One of Israel; Matthew calls him Immanuel: God with us; and Thomas calls him my Lord and my God.

Why, then, did Pilate allow Jesus to be killed?

1. Because Pilate's position, popularity and prestige were under threat.

2. Pilate tried to free him but yielded to the pressure put on him.
A. Pilate said he found no fault in Jesus; but they had scourged him and then brought him before the people and said, "Behold the man!" Jesus was beaten to a pulp. By showing Jesus to the crowd, bloodied, beaten, bruised, with his flesh torn, he was looking for compassion for Jesus, but that made the crowd even more bloodthirsty and they cried out, "Crucify him!"
B. He took a basin of water and tried to wash his hands of the whole affair. But he washed his hands with a wash that only deepened the stain.
C. He tried to get the Jews to make the decision for him. The Jews said, "Our law does not allow us to do that.
D. He tried to bow to public opinion; "What am I supposed to do with Jesus?" No judge should allow others to make their decisions for them. Indecisiveness is always dangerous.
e. They said: "If you release him, you are not Caesar's friend". - John 19:12

3. He refused the advice of his wife, who said "to have nothing to do with this just man."

4. He acted against his better judgment and what he thought was right. He was a coward.

How often do those who reject Christ follow the ways of Pilate.

Peter's denial
Johannes 18:12-18, 25-27

All of us as children of God are weak in our own strength and we all have the ability to fail our God.
-Abraham failed God when he lied about Sarah, his wife, by saying that she was his sister. The messianic lineage could have been defiled if the grace of God had not acted in this situation.
- Moses angrily struck the rock that God told him to speak to provide water in the desert. The result of his expression of anger was that he could not enter the promised land.
- David, Israel's great king, sinned gravely when he committed adultery with Bathsheba and tried to hide his sin by having her husband killed in battle.

No matter who we are or how much we love the Lord, we all have the ability to disappoint our Lord.

Mention the name "Simon Peter," and he commemorates the disciple who stood up first and confessed, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." He would be the first disciple to rise after our Lord's resurrection in the empty tomb left. He was the courageous leader of the disciples.
- Mention the name of Peter and you imagine a victorious disciple who was the preacher at Pentecost and the speaker of the church.

But in today's text we get a completely different picture of Peter: Here he is not courageous, but cowardly; not impetuous but withdrawn; not victorious but defeated.
Peter will deny his Lord not just once but three times in one night.
- What we see in the life of Peter teaches every believer something about themselves. In the shadow of every soul lurks the ability to deny Jesus Christ.
- Peter would admonish each of us to “guard your heart”. We must watch the deception of our hearts if we are to stand up for Him every day.

An account of Peter's failure is repeated in all four gospels to remind us that if Peter was able to fail his Lord, any of us can.

Three things I want to share with you from this text:

I. The reality of failure

Dwight L. Moody was once asked by a man beset with personal, financial, and domestic difficulties, “Mr. Moody, what would you do if you were me?” Moody replied, “I wouldn't have gone in there in the first place if I were you.”
- With all due respect to Mr. Moody, I think he's wrong. His statement sounds too much like Simon Peter's bold declaration: "Lord, although all others may leave you, I will never do it." How must we learn the truth of the old sentence: "So, but for the grace of God I go .” We need to feel the truth, deep within the inner depths of our souls, that failure is possible for all of us.

Peter thought he was ready to face anything for Jesus Christ.

- With determination and much determination, he followed Jesus Christ after his arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. He had impulsively drawn his sword and chopped off the high priest's servant's ear. None of the other disciples had acted so bravely! Peter stood alone!
- No doubt Peter felt good about his brave act in the garden, so now he would follow Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest's house. He was so sure that he would prove his courage again.

Don't miss this: Jesus had warned Peter about his weakness, but Peter had an inflated opinion of himself. I want you to consider this, because what got Peter into trouble and caused his failure is the same thing that often gets us into trouble brings and causes our failure.
-John 13:33, 36-38; Frosted. 26:31a Peter listened to Jesus' warning, but he did not believe that the words of our Lord applied to him. They may relate to the other disciples, but Peter would never do such a thing. He was too tough, too determined and too loyal to falter in difficult times. He loved Jesus too much to abandon Him! (Matthew 26:41) But Peter slept, trusting in his own ability to deal with the difficulties ahead.
-The Bible warns us about ourselves: 1 Cor. 10:12; 1 Tim. 4:16a ("Take good care of yourselves."); Hebrews 3:12; Rome. 12:3

Sometime after midnight, Peter comes to the courtyard gate and waits to be let in.
-John 18:15-17 tells us that John was known to the high priest but not to Peter. John goes back to the maid who held the door open and persuades the maid to let Peter in.
- Peter enters the yard. He's in enemy territory now, but he thinks he's perfectly safe. There are fifty people in the yard, maybe more; it's after midnight and no one there knows him - he thinks!

Strange! Peter had rejoiced at being one of Christ's disciples; Now he wanted to go unnoticed. He didn't want anyone to know that he was a disciple of Jesus.

- Note John 18:17. The word "also" refers to John, who was already present and known to the high priest's family. The maid knew that John was a follower of Jesus and she didn't care, but Peter chose to remain unnoticed as his follower. He said, "I'm not."

The same danger of wanting to be an unnoticed Christian comes into our lives. How many times have we been with new friends, maybe at school or at work or at sports, when the topic of Jesus or Christianity comes up and we say nothing, hoping that nobody will recognize us as Christians? We fail to declare that we belong to Jesus.

Peter told the Lord that he would die for him, but that he would never leave him. Our Lord seldom asks us to die for him, but he asks us to live for him; Committed to him to remain; to remain in close fellowship with Him; to take our stand for him.
-Why didn't Peter tell the girl? The devil was able to use this little girl when someone follows the Lord from afar, as Matthew Peter described, for they are easily caught off guard.

The gospel of Mark points to something that the other evangelists do not. Remember that Mark got a lot of his information from Peter.
-Mark 14:30 tells us that Peter will deny the Lord three times before the rooster crows TWICE.

Mark 14:68 tells us that the maid when she let Peter in said, “You were there too
Jesus." When Peter denied it, he went out on the porch and the rooster crowed" after the first denial. Roosters often crow before sunrise as a kind of rehearsal for the louder crowing after sunrise. To Peter, this first crow was a warning.

John 18:18 tells us that Peter then stood and warmed himself around the fire with Jesus' enemies. Now he is in the place of real temptation.
- Previously, Peter did not distinguish himself as a Christian; now he's trying to fit in with them, behave like them, adopt their way of thinking.
- If we are in a worldly setting and want to change color like a chameleon so that we don't stand out or appear different, we are guilty of the same unguarded heart that Peter illustrated in Denial.
- We should never try to hide our Christianity when we are among this corrupt and perverted generation. The world needs to see that Christians are bold salt and light.

John 18 reveals something else to us. When Jesus answered the high priest, someone came and slapped Jesus in the face.
- Peter just stood there. The one who cut off a man's ear just minutes before just stood there, not wanting to stand and be counted to his master.
- How could he watch Jesus being beaten and do nothing? How can those of us who profess to love Jesus stand with and listen to the multitude of the devil, abuse the precious name of the Lord and not stand up for Him?
- No doubt, while Peter warmed his hands at the enemy's fire, he felt cold and uneasy in his soul. The cozy place is seldom the engaged place.

Now comes the third rejection. What should Peter have done when he first denied the Lord? He should have stopped, realized he had sinned against the Lord, confessed, repented, sought the girl, and righted the wrong. Instead, his first sin went unexamined. Then the second sin went unexamined.

- Sin is inexorable. It's never satisfied until it wraps itself around us and crushes us. Sin wants us all.
-Now a relative of the man whom Peter had struck with the sword said: "I saw you with Jesus in the garden." Peter cursed and denied it for the third time, and the rooster crowed again.

Once Peter cursed, they never again asked him if he was a follower of Jesus.

The crowing of the rooster that morning went unnoticed by the majority of the people of Jerusalem. For most, it was a common noise. There was nothing unusual about that. It brought them no meaningful message except the birth of a new day. But to Peter, the crowing of that rooster was like the blaring of a bugle. The rooster was the messenger of God in Peter's heart, and its familiar sound brought him a message of his failure and sin. - I think every time he heard a roaster crow from that day on, he was reminded that he was in denial of his master.

II. The reasons for the failure

What made Peter deny knowing Jesus?
- Peter was scared, tired and the case of Jesus seemed hopeless. That doesn't excuse his behavior, but it makes it understandable.

Besides, Peter had never expected to be questioned by a maid. Her question caught him completely off guard and he blurted out an answer almost without thinking. After denying Jesus, he thought there was no turning back. He had to act out the situation.

What happened to Peter was no coincidence. He rocked himself through a long series of bad decisions that night. We often follow the same shameful pattern.

1. We ignored Jesus' warnings.

How many times has our Lord given us preventive measures to keep us from sinning, and we ignore his counsel. We still go the places we shouldn't go. We observe and hear things that we know will harm us and lead us to sin. We fail to read God's Word and commune with Him in prayer; then we act surprised when we fall into sin!

2. We do not admit our own weakness.

We see others trapped in sin, but somehow we think that we are stronger than others, or have more willpower than others, or that we are more disciplined than others. So when we come into situations of sin, we are strong enough to resist temptation. No, we are not!!

3.We follow Christ, but at a distance; far away.

4. We try to fit into the world.

5. We are unprepared when the attack comes.

It is interesting that Peter was just fooling himself. The others never really believed him. They sensed that he was lying. Something in his face and tone gave him away.
-Watch I Kor again. 10:12

III. The recovery from failure

The greatest tragedy is not that we fail our Lord; The greatest tragedy is that we fail our Lord and then fail to seek His mercy, grace and forgiveness.
- Our Lord is not surprised that we would fall into sin. Indeed, He prepares a way for us to be reconciled and forgiven. 1 John 1:9.

When Peter denied his Lord the third time, and the Lord turned and looked at Peter, it was:

1. A convincing look

"Peter, you said you didn't know me. look at me peter Look at me. Do not you know me?"

- There is a little rooster in every child of God. When we do wrong, it convicts us and causes great guilt.

2. A compassionate look

It wasn't a judgmental look, but love, mercy and grace.

3. A startup look

Cry, Peter. Repent, Peter. If you are reconciled with me, then go and strengthen your brothers.

- He replaced failure with faith, defeat with devotion, mourning with service, obscenity with preaching. He went beyond failure to victory.

Brownwell North was an able evangelist—appointed by God in several evangelistic circles to preach the gospel. But he gave up his interest in spiritual things and went into a life of shameful activity for a few months. Some of it was done in secret, but some of it made headlines and he felt his life was ruined. When he finally decided what a fool he had been, he came back like a lost man from the pit. The Lord took him back and blessed him. After
for a time he felt pushed back into service. Brownwell feared that his wrongdoing might be discovered. Finally, just when he thought it was hidden in the sands of time, he was back in the pulpit. One night at a revival service he received an unsigned letter. Just before the service began, he picked up the letter and read it. The letter detailed a series of shameful events in which he was a part, and his stomach turned, and the letter ended, "If you have the ruse to preach tonight, I will stand up and expose you." North took the letter and got on his knees. A few minutes later he was standing in the pulpit. He began his message by reading the letter from cover to cover. And he said, “I want to make it clear that this letter is absolutely true. I am ashamed of what I have read and done. I come tonight not as someone who is perfect, but as someone who has been forgiven.” God used this epistle and the balance of His ministry to help bring “spiritual failures” back into fellowship with Christ.

That's how God used Peter: He denied his Lord, but God used him at Pentecost.

Something nice... something good
All my confusion (shame, rebellion) He understood
All I had to offer him was brokenness and strife
But he made something beautiful out of my life.

Not perfect, but forgiven: you can know the joy of this truth.

That message is: You can be forgiven...blessed...used of God!

Pilate was Jesus
Johannes 18:28-19:16

Before reading the passage:

We come to the trials of Jesus. There are six of them - three are religious; three are civil.
- On first reading it looks like Jesus before Pilate, but if you study the passage carefully you realize that it really is Pilate before Jesus.
-Jesus is in full control; He calls the shots.
-Listen and watch as Jesus puts Pilate on trial!

Read the section

Pilate was then the most powerful man in Jerusalem; and yet he was the weakest.
-He knew what he could and should do, but didn't have the courage to do it.
- The decision to release or crucify Jesus weighed squarely on his shoulders.

I. The description of Pilate

- Pilate was the Roman governor over Jerusalem from 26-36 AD.
- He was ill-prepared for his job. He had no training or experience as a governor or a judge. He was appointed to the position because of a deed he had accomplished.
-He was a soldier/warrior. The name "Pontius" means "belonging to the sea".
- In other words, he was a fighting soldier and was taken out of combat and transferred to an administrative position.
- Now as a politician he was crooked, cruel, cautious and calculating.
- Tradition has it that after the resurrection Jesus went insane and was recalled by Tiberius and banished to Vienna, where he committed suicide in 41 AD.

II. Dilemma des Pilatus

He's going to put Jesus to the test... And it's going to be a real fight for him.

A. Pilate yearns for Jesus Jn. 18:28-30

- Three charges are brought against Jesus – Luke 23:1-2

(1) He examines Jesus

- Pilate did a good job examining Jesus. He asked Jesus seven questions:
(a) "Art thou the king of the Jews?" John 18:33
(b) “Am I a Jew?” (I'm not a Jew, am I?) John 18:35
(c) "What have you done?" John 18:35
(d) "Are you a king?" John 18:35
(e) "What is truth?" John 18:38
(f) "Where are you from?" John 19:9
(g) "Are you refusing to speak to me?" John 19:10

- Pilate had a responsibility. If he was guilty, he must punish him. If he wasn't guilty, he must release him.

(2) He avoids Jesus

-He tries to shift his responsibility onto others.

(a) He tries to send Jesus to Herod when he hears that Jesus is a Galilean, but Herod sends him back – Luke 23:7
(b) He attempts to hand Jesus over to the Jewish leaders. John 18:31
(c) He tries to offer them Barabbas for Jesus John 18:39-40
(d) He scourged Jesus, thinking after the crowd saw Him beaten and covered in blood that they would be satisfied - John 19:1-8 (He thought he would discipline Him and let him go - Luke 23:22)
-When Pilate gave Jesus to be flogged, he knew it was an injustice to have an innocent man punished, but he thought it would save him from a worse injustice—crucifixion
- Pilate's conscience rebelled, but he calmed it by telling himself it was the lesser of two evils.
(e) He tries to remain neutral towards Jesus by asking for water to wash his hands from Jesus - Matthew. 27:24
-This is a big mistake that many try – just be neutral towards Jesus. But you cannot be neutral to Jesus. To decide not to decide is to decide against Him.

(3) Is unburdened Jesus
- Three times Pilate says: "I find no fault in him." John 18:38; John 19:4–6

B. Pilate fears Jesus

-Jesus is a hot potato in Pilate's hand. He can't get rid of him.
- Pilate's wife was disturbed by a dream and sent a letter to Pilate saying: "Have nothing to do with this righteous man."
-Then the Jews told Pilate that Jesus claimed to be the Son of God, and Pilate thought he might be - John 19:6-8

III. Pilate's decision

- Pilate was at his fork in the road. He had a decision to make. what would he do
-He wants to let Jesus go...Then the Jews deliver the KO blow; the final and fatal shot. John 19:12-13, 16
- Until then, there had been hope. Pilate had been fighting for his own life and the life of Jesus, but when that word was spoken, Pilate threw Jesus to the hungry Jewish pack of wolves.
- Pilate's name was stained with blood. Worse, the blood of the precious, innocent Son of God.
- I think he wanted to do the right thing and release him. He was so close to doing the right thing. If he had released him, he would have made his memory sweet forever.
-But he blew his chance. He missed the opportunity.
- When it came down to Christ or Caesar, he chose Caesar.

-Three things about his wrong decision:

A. He violated his own conscience

- God gave us our conscience to warn us when we go wrong; make the wrong choice; do the wrong thing.
- How often, like Pilate, do we violate our own conscience and do the wrong thing despite God's warning.

B. He ignored the right thing to do the easy thing

-A survey was conducted among high school seniors. You were asked: “If the final exam determines whether you would pass or fail; whether you would graduate or not and you knew you would fail if you didn't cheat, would you cheat?” 85% said they would cheat.
- It won't be many years before these seniors will be the leaders of society. What will they do when it comes to the crunch time of their lives?
- They will say. "I will do the easy thing" or "I will do the right thing".

C. He was formed by the crowd.

-The crowd said to kill Jesus; so he did too.
-We live in a world where “everyone does it”. If you're a parent with teenagers, you've probably heard this a time or two.
- Ann Landers was asked by a parent how she would counteract this attitude. She said: (1) Everyone doesn't; (2) Even if they are, that doesn't make it right.

IV. The discoveries about Pilate

- Pilate is not an example to follow, but I want you to see some truths from his life.

A. God still loves you. John 18:33-38 Jesus tries to reach Pilate to save him. He opens the door to the kingdom and invites him in.

B. It takes courage to do the right thing.

One of the bravest things I've ever heard of happened at the State Bible Drills. The rules are that you can make two mistakes when finding the passage; If you make a third mistake, you're out. Few could win. The caller shouted, "The Crucifixion." The young people all stepped forward. They had their fingers on the passage. The caller asked one of them to read. He called a girl who read the passage in Matt. 27. A young man had his finger on John 18. No one could see where he had his finger. He had already made two mistakes. If he had three faults, he could not be rated Excellent. What would he do if he knew no one would see or know? He raised his hand and said, "I have my finger on the wrong passage." According to the rules, he was not judged excellent, but he was there by everyone that day and he was by his master.
- It takes courage to do the right thing.

C. When it comes to Jesus, you cannot shift responsibility.

-It is your responsibility – what will you do with Jesus!

- Jesus stands at the door of your heart
Standing and knocking, He knocked first
That is the question you must ask yourself once more
What are you going to do with Jesus?

What are you going to do with Jesus?
You can't be neutral
One day your heart will ask
what will he do to me

- Pilate washed his hands and said: “Take him and crucify him. I'm done with him."
-Oh no, you're not done with Him yet, Pilate. He stood before you in innocence and you had him crucified. One day the tables will turn. Jesus will sit on the throne and you will stand
in front of him.

- Pilate gave his final judgment on Jesus and that judgment is forever.
- Jesus will one day pass judgment on Pilate and on us, and his judgment will stand forever.

The soldiers: add pain and shame
Johannes 19:1-3, 23-24, 31-37

Over the years, Christian lawyers have examined the six trials...they were sham trials...and found five major illegal activities that would never have been admitted in a real court:

1. The procedure was started at night. Under Roman law, it was illegal to start a trial at night, as it would be an undue haste to judge.
2. The prisoner was personally abused and abused before he was even brought to trial.
3. They allowed the introduction of contradictory statements as evidence.
4. No witnesses were called into the trial on behalf of the defendant.
5. The judge before whom he stood declared him innocent and nevertheless put him to death.

Read the section

We read about the soldiers... the soldiers... the soldiers!

Pilate was responsible for giving the order to crucify Jesus, but it was the soldiers who carried out the order and actually crucified him.

We don't have names of the soldiers who killed Jesus. They are just called soldiers.

In fact, there were at least three groups or bands of soldiers involved in Jesus' death:
1. Temple Guards: These were the temple guards who found him praying in the garden. They laid the foundation for the upcoming trial.
2. Pilate's soldiers: The temple guards handed Jesus over to Pilate's soldiers. Four of those soldiers would be the executioners...the ones who would actually crucify Jesus.
3. Tomb Soldiers: Those who were ordered to stand guard at the tomb.

I. Terrible pain

- I must tell you that before the middle of the 20th century preachers described in gory detail the sufferings of Jesus. By the 1940s or 1950s, preachers were being told that such a description of Christ's death was too gory and unfit for our modern pulpit. Modern television has generally desensitized us to atrocities. We know what we see on TV is not real, so we pay little attention to it. The result is that we don't see Jesus' suffering as real, so in our minds we minimize Jesus' physical suffering.
-Then stubborn sinners would be told of the terrible, bloody sacrifice for sin, and their hard hearts would break and they would repent of their sin and convert to Christ.
- Today we hear little preaching about the blood of Christ, and yet the Bible still says that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin.
-No, I don't think we have to go to the extreme and be bloody just to be bloody...but the suffering and death of Jesus for sin was an ugly, bloody sight and we dare not face it whitewash !

- Watch the soldiers inflict terrible pain on Jesus:

A. The Flagellation

1. Scourging was incredibly cruel. To prepare the victim for the flogging, his hands were tied behind his back. Then the victim was mocked. He was hit with the open hand. The soldiers as a mob group would beat him one by one. Then they hit the head and eyes with their fists until the eyes were almost swollen shut. He could only see through small slits in his eyes.

2. The victim was stripped naked, bent over and handcuffed to a post. He was tied down with straps containing bits of bone and metal. For the Romans there was no maximum, like thirty-nine lashes in Jewish law (Deut. 25:3). The sadistic executioner whipped until he wanted to stop.

3. The first blow took the victim's breath away. The bits of bone and metal in the relentless beating ripped out flesh, blood, eyes, teeth and even parts of internal organs. Many victims died.

4. Jesus was a bloody pulp when Pilate brought him out and said, "Behold the man"
(Johannes 19:6)

5. Pilate caused the scourging... the crowds enjoyed it... and the soldiers carried it out!

6.Oh, but look at our wonderful Lord! Man cannot refuse the love of our Lord Jesus. Later, on the cross, he prays: "Father, forgive them..."

B. The Crown of Thorns Matt. 27:29

The soldier, unknown to him, preached a symbolic message with these thorns... for thorns play a strategic role in Scripture:

1. The curse of the crown of sin Gen. 3:14-19
These are symbols of all of humanity's sorrows and sufferings resulting from sin. There were no thorns on the earth until sin walked the earth.

2. Die Opferkrone 1. Mose 22:13
As the ram caught with its horns (head) in the thicket was a sacrifice and substitute for Isaac, so the thorns on the head of our Lord speak of our sacrifice.

3.The Crown of Sovereignty Heb. 2:9; Revelation 19:12
Don't forget that this was a crown and Jesus was "crowned with glory and honor" because of his death.

C. The nails

The hands and feet were bound and then nailed to the cross. The soldiers felt the indentation in the wrist, placed a spike there, and drove the spike home.

- There's no way we can look at all the horrible pain, but I'll get to now:

II. The Abusive Shame

A. The mocking

During the hearing, a man pushes him a chair. "Your throne, O king. Sit"
As the semi-conscious Jesus moves stiffly, the man hurls swearwords in his face and yells, "I said sit down!"
As Jesus begins to sit, the chair is pulled away from him. The room erupts in laughter. The soldier stretches out a hand. Jesus weakly reaches for it. The soldier clenches his other hand into a fist and punches him. Amid the roar of laughter, amid the pool of blood pouring from his nose, Jesus lies motionless. With his face on the tiled floor, Jesus closes his eyes. For a moment his swelling face finds grace in the coolness of the stone. But only for a moment.

Another soldier nudges him with his boot and extends a hand. Jesus looks up through swollen and slit eyelids. When he takes the hand, the man fakes a punch. Jesus winces. And another laugh fills the circle.

A couple of soldiers lift the battered prisoner onto the stool. One of them throws himself down. "A gift from a loyal subject," he says, then rises with an uppercut, snapping the ligaments in Jesus' jaw from their hinges and sending him and the stool backwards.

They drape a deep red cloak around his shoulders, staining the spilled blood and coloring the fabric a darker hue. They put him back on the stool and put a tall pipe in his hand. "Your Scepter, Majesty."

Another soldier has taken a strand of thorns from the tinderbox and braided them into a wreath. "The king must have a crown." And he presses the three-inch thorns into Jesus' scalp. There he is dressed in fool's clothes.

Another man snatches the reed from Jesus' hand and hits him on the head, driving the thorns deeper. A line of blood emerges with each puncture. Every pulse beat sends rivulets of the savior's life down his face.

"Hail, King of the Jews!" shouts the commanding officer, and the whole cohort kneels. But instead of throwing the king's garlands of praise, the soldiers pluck slime from the rasping depths of their throats and throw it away.

A volley of spit is thrown at the king. Then another. And another. Until finally He is saturated with their contempt.

B. The Players John 19:23-24

1. We would say, "All he had were the clothes on his back." Here we see these too were taken from him by the players of Calvary. Watch them play at the foot of the cross.

2. There were probably five parts - the headband, the sandals, the outer garment, the belt and the tunic - a seamless garment worn next to the skin. Since the items were unequal, the four soldiers threw a sort of "lot" (sticks, dice, stones) to see who got what. Each of them got an item and that left the tunic or slip, so instead of tearing it in four, they cast lots again to see who got it.
3. The essence of the naked Christ is that he gave all he had so that we could become all he is to God.
4. The result of sin was the "nakedness" of Adam and Eve, which made them ashamed and afraid to come into God's presence. As our naked representative, he has enabled us to clothe ourselves in his righteousness so that we can stand in the presence of a holy God.

As I contemplate the wondrous cross
On which the prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss
And pour contempt on all my pride.

See from his head, his hands, his feet
sorrow and love flow down mixed,
Did such love and sorrow ever meet
Or thorns form such a rich crown?

If the whole realm of nature were mine,
That was far too small a gift;
love so amazing so divine
Demands my soul, my life, my everything.

III. The Amazing Claim Matt. 27:54

What prompted this soldier to make this amazing claim?

A. The suffering of Jesus
He'd seen people die... He'd seen people die on the cross. But he had never seen a man die like this before. This man died pouring out his love.

B. The statements of Jesus

C. The scenes after the death of Jesus
The darkness at noon... the shaking of the rocks... the opening of the tombs

DL Moody used to tell the story: Peter ended the message on the day of Pentecost by saying, "Whoever believes in him can be saved." A hand in the crowd went up. The man asked, "Can I be saved?" Peter said, "Whoever..." The man said, "But I was the soldier using the whip on his back. Will He save even me?” Peter said, “Whoever…” Another said, “I was the one who made the crown of thorns for His forehead. Can I be saved?” Peter said, “Whoever…” Another said, “I was the one who put the spear in his side. Can I be saved?” Peter said, “Whoever…”

No matter who you are or what you've done, he can even save you! All that is required is that you place your faith and trust in Jesus alone.

Substitute for the substitute
Johannes 19:23-27

We come again to the cross of Jesus - not because it is a beautiful place or a pleasant place, but because it is a place of power and purity and a place of inspiration and teaching.

Before we hear Jesus speak from the Cross for the third time, there is an incident that occurs with the soldiers at the foot of His Cross that I would like to draw your attention to.
- At the foot of the cross something happened that was prophesied in Psalm 22:18 - “They divided my garments among themselves and cast lots for my garments.” All four Gospel writers refer to this prophecy when describing Christ's crucifixion (Mt. 27:35; Mark 15:24; Luke 23:34; John 19:24).
- The soldiers who crucified a person had the right to take for themselves everything that belonged to the man who was crucified.
There were usually five items belonging to the victim and four soldiers. There was the headpiece (to keep the hair in place), the sandals, the upper robe, the belt, and the slip, which was usually a soft, loose inner robe that covered the shoulders and fell just above the knees.
- Jewish mothers usually made this garment for their sons when they reached the age of maturity and were about to leave the house. It would be seamless to show her unending love for her son even though he was about to leave the house.
- The soldiers bet on this piece of clothing that day.
- When the soldiers touched His tunic, they touched something near the heart of Maria.

- Lamentations 1:2 describes how Jesus must have felt as he watched the soldiers at the foot of his cross playing around this garment.

- The poet put it this way:

And as they sat down, they watched him there, the soldiers did,
There, while they were playing dice, he offered his sacrifice,
And died on the cross to rid God's world of sin.

He was kind of a player too, my God
He took his life and threw it for a redeemed world
And before His agony was over, before the western sun went down
Crowns this day with its crimson crown
He knew he had won!

Notice the words at John 19:25, "Now stood the cross of Jesus."
Actually it should be: "Now there stood the cross of Jesus."
- If you and I had been in Jerusalem that Passover afternoon when Jesus was crucified, I wonder how close we would have been to the cross.
- It's one thing to sing, “Jesus, hold me near the cross,” and it's quite another to actually stay near the cross.
-The four Roman soldiers were there, but they were there because of DUTY. The three women with the apostle John were there out of devotion. They loved Jesus!
- The proximity to the cross is not a question of geography, but of spiritual communion with Jesus.

As we approach the cross, we will find that we love, identify with, and serve the Lord Jesus more!

Coming to this passage, I want us to examine the following:

I. Die Szene - Johannes 19:25

It was sometime between 9am. and 12 noon, when the crowd gathered at Skull Hill. Mary, the mother of Jesus, was present at the crucifixion of her son.
- By now she must have been in her early fifties. She is now a widow. Joseph is gone. She is standing on the cross with two other women and the apostle John, and on the cross is her firstborn son.
-No mother ever had a son like Jesus. No doubt she was reflecting on that still and holy night when her son was born and the promise she heard concerning her son (Luke 1:32-33). Now how can that promise ever be fulfilled?
-Mary remembered the prophecy of Simeon when Jesus was presented as a baby in the temple.
Lukas 2:34-35

I want you to see two things about Mary:

A. Mary stood there... in silence!

Who can imagine what Mary felt and went through as she stood at the foot of the Cross and looked up at her Son.
- We don't know if Mary has been at a crucifixion before, but as a parent I can imagine that to some extent she suffered with Jesus.
- She had watched them hit him. She heard the crowd taunting and falsely accusing him. Maybe she was standing on the side of the road when Jesus was carrying his cross. Perhaps she saw him falling under the weight of the cross. She felt every hammer blow. She flinched under the prick of thorns on His forehead.
-Mary's son was dying and she couldn't help it! She watched her son being tortured to death and couldn't stop it! His wounds were bleeding and she could not tend them. His mouth was parched, but Maria could not wet his lips. The nails held him to the cross, but she could not remove them. How much Maria must have suffered as he suffered.

Try as we may, we cannot read the thoughts and feelings of Mary's heart.
-His disciples had deserted him. Friends had left him. But Maria was standing next to him. Not a word is recorded of any of the evangelists she spoke to. She suffered in unbroken silence.
- She had the greatest privilege of bearing the Messiah, but she felt the greatest sorrow when she saw him crucified.

B. Maria standing yes

We read that others sat while Jesus suffered. Maria stood. The verb used for "stand" means that she stood from beginning to end; through the whole ordeal.
-She stands there and watches everything. I wonder if she remembered him saying, "I have my father's business to attend to."

Mary is a great testimony. The world is always watching how a Christian will react in such circumstances.

II. The Declaration - John 19:26-27

We come to the most touching and tender scene of Calvary. This third verse is addressed to the two who were closest to Jesus on earth - Mary and John.
-Suddenly, in the midst of all His pain, the eyes of Jesus from the cross meet the eyes of Mary who is standing next to the cross. And He speaks this third word; and He speaks to her!

The Jews placed great emphasis on the obligation of parents to their children and also on the responsibility of children to their parents.
- The fifth commandment says that we should honor our father and mother. In His final moments, He would fulfill the final obligation of making sure His mother was cared for after He left.

What is the truth here? Jesus pondered this truth so much that even though he was concerned about saving the world, he wasn't too busy taking care of his parents.
– What an example our Lord left us! We are never released from this sacred and sacred obligation.
-We must take care of our parents as long as they live. I Tim 5:8

The commandment says that we should honor our father and mother. The word honor means respect; do not take them lightly.”
- Jesus uses the cross as a pulpit to proclaim a message that we all need to hear and heed. The welfare of our aging parents is important.
-We are to take care of our parents while they are alive, but we are to honor our parents both when they are alive and after they have left this life.
- There's never a time when it's okay not to honor your parents. This means that we must not neglect our parents. We must never be unkind to our parents or speak ill of our parents.
- Even if you can't speak well of your parents, you can honor them by refusing to speak evil against them.
- Mary was between 50 and 55 years old at the death of our Lord and tradition says that John took Mary into his house and she lived with him eleven years and died.

Now Jesus speaks to John. Our Lord on the Cross was the perfect replacement. He said to John: “I take your place; Now I want you to take my place. John, serve Mary in my name.”

Why John? Why not one of his half brothers? At that time they were not believers. John was most like his Master in demeanor, character and compassion.

III. The security

Maria lost a SON but gained a SAVIOR.

With the death of her son comes the birth of her redemption. Literally, she will find that Jesus made better provision for her as her Savior than he ever could have made for her son.
-Jesus commands John to bring Mary to his earthly home while saying of himself: “I go to prepare a place for you...a glorious dwelling place to be yours for eternity.

John should be the deputy for THE deputy!

Here's the lesson for us: There is no more glorious mission on Earth than to replace the Deputy. If the work of Jesus is to be done, it must be done by His representatives.

-Our task is to replace the deputy.

Annie Johnson Flint wrote:

Christ has no hands but our hands
To do his work today
He has no feet but our feet
to lead people on their way
Er hat keine Zunge außer unseren Zungen
To tell the people how he died
He has no help but our help
To bring her to his side.

I'm thirsty
Johannes 19:28-30

The Lord Jesus has now been on the cross for a little over six hours. Three of those hours were in the hot, bright morning sun from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Then suddenly at 12 noon the land in Jerusalem and perhaps all over the world will be darkened. It's pitch dark! The sun does not shine for three hours.
- It was during these three hours of darkness that our Lord's spiritual passion took place. Our sin was imposed on him. Every man's sin was imposed on him. He became sin for us. The wrath of God was fully poured out on Him. He literally went through hell to pay for our sin on that cross. He paid man's full redemption price.

Jesus did not speak of the cross in the time of darkness, but He did speak during the day.

His first word was a word of forgiveness: in grace and mercy he says, "Father, forgive them..."

Then he spoke a word of peace: To the repentant thief he said: "Today you will be with me in paradise."

Next he speaks a word of provision to his mother: "Woman, behold thy son;" and to John: "Behold thy mother."

Then came the three-hour darkness. The moment the light reappeared, He said, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
It's a word of helplessness.
Shortly after the fourth verse, Jesus speaks his fifth verse. It is the shortest of all seven proverbs, only four letters in Greek. It is the only direct reference Jesus made to his own suffering. He said, "I'm thirsty!" After six hours on the cross, and after enduring our hell and God's wrath for our sin, He cried, "I'm thirsty!"

At the beginning of the crucifixion, probably before they drove the first nail into his hands, Matthew, Mark, and Luke say they offered him "wine mixed with gall" to drink.
"Gall" refers to something bitter. It was some kind of narcotic. The Jews had a custom, based on Prov. 31:6, of administering an analgesic drug mixed with wine to crucifixion victims to numb the pain.
-Prov. 31:6 This intoxicating drink was given to a criminal who was being executed or to one who was in pain from an incurable disease. We do the same today to ease the pain of dying.
-When he tasted what it was, Christ, though thirsty, would "not drink" lest it cloud his mind before he finished his work. He needed his full mental faculties for the hours to come. For example, he had to be awake and alert and fully conscious to serve the dying thief.

This is not the first time Jesus has been thirsty since he was crucified. It had been about 18 to 20 hours since Jesus had eaten, probably since he had observed the Passover and instituted the sacrament in the Upper Room.
- Remember that Jesus had walked through Gethsemane, hours of mock trials, the beating under the whip, the open wounds of His hands and feet, six hours on the cross with loss of blood. No wonder he cries, "I'm thirsty!"

I would like to point out three things to you when we come to this fifth saying:

I. There is a word of confirmation - John 19:28

Jesus is almost dead. He is barely alive. Every breath now requires an enormous effort. He's panting, panting, fighting for oxygen. Sweat pours off him. He makes strange guttural noises. The experienced soldiers had heard this sound before. It was the death rattle. He yells, "I'm thirsty!"

The soldiers had their version of a canteen in which they carried some sort of vinegary wine mixed with water. It was the cheapest drink of the day. It was the drink of the common man and the Roman soldier.
- The soldiers got the wine, took a sponge, dipped it in the sour vinegar wine, put it on a hyssop stalk and put it on Jesus' lips so that Jesus could lick the sponge and wet his lips, tongue and throat, just enough, so Jesus could say a word or two. Crucified were only about 20 to 24 inches off the ground, allowing the soldiers to easily reach the lips with the sponge.

“After that, Jesus, knowing that now all was finished”
• “After”—after the darkness and all that happened in the darkness—Now that the sun began to shine again, Jesus knew his work on earth was done.

What did Jesus know?
-His knowledge was more than human knowledge; it was divine knowledge. There wasn't a living man who knew what had to be done on Calvary. Only God would know, and Christ was indeed God.

Even on the cross, Jesus is in control and master of the moment. He is vigilant until his death.
Whatever Jesus accomplished in that bitter agony during the three hours of darkness, covered by our guilt and witnessing the Father turning His face from Him, was now completed.
- His purpose of suffering was ended. Jesus knew that nothing more was needed. The payment for our sins has been made.

II. There is an identification word

This word from the cross identifies Jesus more than any other as the Godman. He is both human and
- As God, He fulfilled the task of paying man's debt for sin; as a man He cried, "I thirst."
-He is exhausted because He has completed His work of salvation and won the victory for you and me.

Thirst is a sign of physical weakness. Dehydration robs a body of its strength.
- He had given everything for us on the cross. He had nothing. He used every ounce of energy in the work of redemption.
-Here the almighty God was without power anymore. What a riddle!
- The same Lord who created the Pacific and Atlantic oceans said, "I am thirsty." Jesus who dug the Mississippi said, "I am thirsty." The same Lord who caused water to flow out of the rock for His people to drink , later had to ask for a drink from his enemies. The one who promised this emanates
Living water to the woman at the well and promised that rivers of living water would flow in everyone who believed in him and said on the cross, "I thirst." The fountain of living water said, "I thirst."
When Jesus cried, "I thirst," He fulfilled two A.T. Prophecies: Ps. 22:15; hp 69:20-21

III. There is a word of revelation

When Jesus said, "I am thirsty," He meant more than "My throat is dry and I need a drink of water." He also implied, "I bear the wrath of God for the sins of mankind."
- With these words, Jesus described hell as the place of ultimate thirst.
-Jesus described a rich man in hell. He cried out in pain as he was tormented in the flames of hell and said: “Send Lazarus to dip his fingertip in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.” (Luke 16:24)
-What thirst! But never deterred. This rich man has suffered from nagging thirst for 2,000 years and will continue to do so for millions, even billions, of years to come.
- Those who reject Christ, the living water, will suffer eternal thirst.

There is another sense in which Christ says, "I thirst." We can apply his words to mean, "I thirst to save people from their sins and to have a loving relationship with them."
- Heed the last invitation of the Bible: Rev. 22:17

"It is finished!"
Johannes 19:28-30

A skeleton was found perched on the root of a tree on Mount McKinley. A finger was scratched into the bark just above it, pointing to the skeleton. Beside the finger were these words: "The end of the trail." They told the tragic story of someone who had set out to climb that towering mountain, but his strength had failed. He died without realizing his goal.
- Someone wrote that the poor man said: “I'm done. I've pushed my limits. I have achieved nothing but disgrace, defeat and death.”

Only one person in history has never left an unfinished business. His name is Jesus.
- He is the only person who, at the end of his life, can say with absolute and absolute truthfulness: "I have accomplished everything I set out to do."

In 1991, President Bush flew to Mt. Rushmore for a special 50th anniversary celebration. It's a little-known fact that the sculptor, a man named Gutzon Borglum, never finished his work. If you study the faces closely, it's clear that he spent more time with George Washington than with the other three presidents. That's because he originally planned to lengthen each president's figures to the chest area. But he never lived long enough to achieve his dream. His son continued his work for several months after his death, but ran out of money. Since then, 50 years and millions of tourists have passed, but Mt. Rushmore, magnificent as it is, remains an unfinished work.

We all have unfinished things that overload our lives. We die too soon or we die with work unfinished.
- We all go through life leaving a trail of unfinished projects and unfulfilled dreams. None of us can say, "I accomplished exactly what I set out to do in life." Only Jesus can say that.

He's been on the cross for six hours. When He cried, "I thirst," He did so because He wanted to be awakened enough to stand up for that loud cry so that all could hear Him say, "It is finished!"

This is a word from:

I. Relief

The Greek word is Teteletai. It means "to complete, to complete, to accomplish the successful end of a task". It's more than just "I survived". It means, "I did exactly what I set out to do."
- Our Lord's cry was not a whisper or a soft voice. He cried out in a loud voice, "It is finished!"

But there is more! The verb is in the perfect.
• The past tense looks back on an event and says, "That happened."
• Perfect speaks of an action that was completed in the past and the results of which continue into the present.
• When Jesus cried out, “It is finished,” He meant, “It was finished in the past, it is finished in the present, and it will remain finished in the future.” The work was done fully and perfectly, but their results go on and on.

What was finished?

A. His personal sufferings were ended

There is one word left to be spoken from the cross, but Jesus speaks that word almost immediately after that word.
- No longer would cruel people whip him on the back, slap him in the face, spit on him, mock him, drive thorns into his forehead or nails into his hands and feet. All His pains are at an end.

This is not a cry of despair; no whimper of a victim. It was a victory cry! A shout of triumph! It was uttered in the thrill of irrepressible joy!

Jesus had completed a task of supreme worth! What job did Jesus do?

1. He came to seek and save the lost.
2. He came that people might have life and have it in abundance.
3. He came to establish a kingdom, a brotherhood in which they would be in the kingdom of one heart and one soul.
4. He came to make God known to man. Everything we want to know about God can be found in Jesus Christ.

B. His perfect sacrifice was over

Before Jesus Christ died on the cross, it was sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice, year after year. People must have thought, "Will the sacrifices never end?"
-Heb.10:11-12 Our Great High Priest, the Lord Jesus, appeared to make a final sacrifice for sin, ending the need for further sacrifices.
-Jesus declared, “It is finished. No more sacrifice! No more cross! No more blood! God is forever satisfied with His perfect sacrifice. Nothing can be added to that. It's complete!
-Religion speaks of salvation in terms of "DOING". Christianity speaks of salvation as "DONE!" We can
add nothing to what Jesus has already done.

The work of redemption is now complete. The price paid for the sins of the world has been paid in full.
- Once something is paid for in full, you never have to pay for it again.

Telestai means:

1. It's DONE!

Hubert Simpson, in his Testament of Love, describes a picture painted for the Royal Corps of Signalers depicting an incident during World War II. A signaler had been sent out to repair a cable snapped by shell fire and was shot dead trying to restore lost contact. The picture shows him lying dead in the process of completing his task, holding the two ends of the broken wire together. Below the picture is a word: "Through". This is what Christ did for us through his death. Sin has cut off contact between God and man. The divine currant was interrupted. He made contact in His death. Under the Cross of Calvary we write a word - Through! Jesus is the only Mediator and no one can come to the Father except through Him.

You see, the saint lives by what Christ accomplished on the cross.
- A pastor visited a woman whose husband had died in the war. She said to the preacher, “I have lived off my husband's wounds for years.

Everything you see in this house was bought with his wounds. The check I get every month for his death has kept me going all these years.” The minister said, “Yes, and I live on the wounds of my Savior.”

2.It cannot be undone.

3.It cannot be recovered.

- What He did on that cross cannot be added. Trying to add anything to his victim to make himself more "acceptable" is the ultimate insult to his victim. How dare we, in our sinful humanity, think that we can "add" to His finished work.
-A few years ago a Christian farmer was very worried about an unsaved carpenter. The farmer tried to take the gospel of God's grace to the neighbor and explain how Christ's finished work was sufficient for his soul... But the carpenter insisted that he had to do something himself. One day the farmer asked his friend to build a gate for him and when the gate was ready he brought it to him in his truck. He arranged for the carpenter to meet him the next morning and inspect the gate as it hung in the field. At the appointed hour the carpenter came and was surprised to see this peasant standing by with a sharp axe. What you up to? I'll add some cuts and strokes to your work. But there is no need. The gate is fine. Everything necessary is done. The farmer kept mowing. look what you did You ruined my work. That's what you're trying to do with the work of Jesus.

C. His power over Satan

Col. 2:15 Jesus defeated Satan on the cross. He triumphed over Satan and all his demons.
-Heb. 2:14b Jesus did more than just weaken Satan. He took all his power from him.

he was raised to die,
"It is finished" was His cry.
Now high in heaven:
Hallelujah, what a savior!

II. Readiness

Let me ask you a personal question: What sin is keeping you from God today?

Let me bring you some good news. It doesn't matter what your sin is or how guilty you feel.
-All your sins have been stamped by God with one word - Tetelestai - Paid in full.

Wrath... Tetelestai... Paid in full.
Gossip ... Tetelestai ... Paid in full.
Drunkenness... Tetelestai... Paid in full.

Just fill in the blank with the sins that plague your life. Then write about those sins: Paid for in full by the blood of Jesus Christ. The price of your sins has been paid in full.

At the cross! At the cross!
Johannes 19:16-37

Before reading the passage:

We Christians sing: “On the cross, on the cross where I first saw the light
and the burden of my heart rolled away -
It was there by faith I got my sight
And now I'm happy all day long."

We sing, "I will boast on the cross."

A cross hung around your neck or pinned on your lapel tells the world of your faith... and wearing it brings a measure of respect.
- But take this little trinket 2,000 years in the past and try wearing it around your neck or on your robe and people will look at you suspiciously and think you're some kind of madman.
-Because at that time the cross was not a symbol of faith, but of failure; not of morality, but of lawlessness; not out of respect, but out of unspeakable shame.
- It would be like a piece of jewelry designed today in the form of a hangman's noose or electric chair and hung around our necks.
- Then the cross was not polished and appreciated. It was made of roughly hewn timbers and spikes of iron. It was an instrument of torture for criminals sentenced to death, by which they were hung, usually on Calvary - the skull site remote from the city near a rubbish dump!

But Jesus' death on that cross for our sins transformed the cross from an instrument of shame and curse into one of honor.
- We are saved because of the blood of Jesus that was shed on that cross.
-Now we sing: “I will boast on the cross!”
-We could not be saved if Christ had not suffered on that cross.

Christians love to sing of the cross:

“On a distant hill stood an ancient, craggy cross, The symbol of suffering and shame
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best was killed for a world of lost sinners.

O this old rugged cross, so despised by the world, has a wonderful appeal to me;
For the dear Lamb of God left his glory above to carry it to dark Golgotha.

In the old jagged cross stained with blood so divine I see a wondrous beauty
Because on that old cross Jesus suffered and died to forgive me and to sanctify me.

I want to be eternally faithful to the old rugged cross, willingly bear its shame and disgrace.
Then one day he will call me to my home far away, where I will share his glory forever.”

So I'll cherish the old sturdy cross Until my trophies are finally laid down
I will cling to the old, sturdy cross and one day trade it for a crown.”

"For dearer than anything the world can convey was the message that came to my heart
How this Jesus alone atoned for my sin, and Calvary covered everything.

The stripes he wore and the thorns he wore forever spoke of his mercy and love
And my heart sank in shame as I called upon His name, And Calvary covers all.

How blessed is the thought of my soul being purchased by Him, Being in glory on high
Where with joy and song I shall be one of the thrones, and Calvary covers all.

Calvary covers everything, my past with its sin and blemish; my guilt and despair
Jesus took Him there, and Calvary covers everything.

"Man of Sorrows! What a name for the Son of God who came to reclaim ruined sinners!
Hallelujah, what a savior!

He was raised to die: "It is finished!" was his cry. Now in heaven
exalted high; Hallelujah, what a savior!

When He comes, our glorious King, To bring home all the redeemed, Then this song will sing again
to sing. Hallelujah, what a savior!”

Read the passage: John 19:16-18

Pilate examined Jesus and said to the people three times: "I find no fault in him". And yet he hands Him over to crucifixion!

I. The way to the cross

- Jesus was on his feet for nine hours during the six trials. During this time he was abused, spat on, beaten, whipped, dragged from place to place without food or drink and without rest. His whole body is bruised and bleeding. His eyes are almost swollen shut from being hit with his fist; His sight comes only through slits in His eyes. His lips are split from the beatings; his nose is bleeding. He is weakened by the loss of blood.

- Three men are crucified together. Those who were crucified must carry their own crossbar up the hill to the skull site. Each of the three men had four soldiers who acted as executioners and walked with them up the Via Dolorosa - the path of sorrows and sorrows.

- They always took the longest way to Calvary. It would give people more time and
Opportunity to hurl insults and curses at those about to be killed. It would also weaken them so that when they were about to be nailed to the cross it would take a lot of struggle from them.
- A 12" x 24" placard explaining the crime was either placed around the criminal's neck or carried by one of the four soldiers walking in front of the man. Before they erected the cross, the poster was nailed to the top of the cross.
-The Via Dolorosa led through narrow cobbled streets, often causing them to stumble under the crossbeams. One of the times Jesus stumbled, he couldn't get up. He was yelled at and kicked and flogged again on his already scourged back. He still couldn't get up.

A. Simon von Cyrene Matt. 27:32

-Simon of Cyrene, who lived about 800 miles from Jerusalem, was there to worship because it was Passover week. He had happened to see and hear what was going on and just walked out into the street to watch.
-When Simon was snatched from the crowd and asked to help Jesus carry the crossbar, he was undoubtedly upset and humiliated. He resented having to carry this damned man's burden. It was of little use to be angry with the soldiers; Resistance would mean death, so he turned his anger on the prisoner.
- I wonder if Jesus spoke to him. "I'm sorry to bother you like this. Thank you for helping me." I wonder if that bar, instead of being a burden, became a privilege. He was doing something of the greatest worth. Jesus found the cross a little easier because of him.
-I wonder what it would have been like to be in Simon's shoes:
• To endure the ridicule and swearing
• To share the humiliation of our Lord's rejection
• To feel the sticky warmth of His blood from the Cross.
• Seeing the executioner standing impatiently, hammer in hand, waiting
• To have lifted the burden of the cross and to hear the soldier say, “This is his cross. You can go."
-I wonder if Jesus thanked him again for helping him.

B. The weeping and wailing women Luke 23:28-31

- Luke tells us that some women began to cry and lament for Jesus as he went up the hill. Jesus said to them, "Don't weep for me. Cry for you... and you children. These were probably not women who were disciples of our Lord, but professional mourners. But in the midst of all that was going on, the calmest mind and heart in the crowd that day belonged to Jesus.

C. At the site of the crucifixions

- When they finally arrived at the execution site, it was around 9:00 am. One of the first things they do when he gets there is strip him naked. Stripped of all His dignity and modesty and the purity of Jesus' physical person, exposed, naked to die in the scorching, scorching heat - groaning in agony - practically on a par with those who passed, for His feet are only 2 to 8 inches off the ground.

- Have you ever had to undress to be examined by the inquiring, curious eyes of others?
-Doctors, nurses, X-ray technicians? Everything was taken from him; yet He found so much to give: He gave forgiveness to his executioners...He gave paradise to a thief...He gave his mother a son.

- They put the crossbeam behind Jesus, quickly pulled him backwards. The beam was fastened under his neck, and soldiers on either side quickly knelt between his elbows. Jesus offered no resistance.
- With his right hand, the executioner felt Jesus' wrist to find the small indentation. When he found it, he took one of the square-cut iron nails, held it in place, raised the hammer over the head of the nail, and struck it down with great force.
- Two soldiers grabbed each side of the transom and lifted it up. As they pulled up, they draped Jesus on the wrist. They lifted Jesus off the ground and placed the crossbar in its prepared place at the top of the pole. Then they nailed his feet to a cross.
- With Him stretched out, hanging in place, jubilation and derision rise from the religious leaders.

D. Temptations of Satan Luke 4:13

- In Luke 4:13, Satan tried Jesus to avoid the cross and bend down and worship Him - when Jesus was at his weakest - after 40 days without food. We are then told that Satan has left him for a "more opportune time." He tempted Jesus throughout His ministry, but never more so than when He was on the Cross. The word propitious time speaks of a fruit heavy on the branches...a time ripe for picking. Satan thought, "If Jesus is ever going to be ready to be picked, it's now."
-He had suffered the loss of sleep, blood, friends. He had never been more tired, weak and alone. He has seen Jesus beaten and mocked - Jesus was never more within his reach. He uses the religious guides first - "Come down from the cross". Then he uses the thieves - "Save you and us." But Jesus knows he can choose one or the other. He can save himself...or he can save us...but he can't do both.

E. The soldiers at the foot of the cross John 19:23-24

-What a picture of the indifference of the world. While Jesus pays for people's sins, the soldiers only care about His underwear!

II. The witness on the cross - John 19:19-22

-Is not like God! He never leaves without a witness! He spread the gospel from the top of the cross - And with a very simple and concise message:
Jesus (Jehovah saves) - speaks of His salvation
King of the Jews - speaks of His sovereignty
-Jehovah died on the cross to save people. In John 19:21 the Jews wanted Pilate to add something.

-Did God use the mark? Luke 23:38-43

III. The Words on the Cross

Seven words fall from his lips. Here they are in the order we think he spoke them:

A. The Word of Desire Luke 23:34 “Father, forgive them”
1. Jesus desires to forgive more than to live!
2. The word "forgive" means to remove...put out of the way. Jesus says, “Father, what they are doing to me...put that out of the way. Don't let what they do to me stop you from forgiving their sins.”
3. He doesn't want a single sin to be judged... He wants to forgive it.

B. The word of reversal of Luke 23:42 Today...”
-Here is a man hanging at the turning point of his life and Jesus says, "Today..."
- What happened to change his mind about Jesus? His behavior, His prayer for forgiveness, The sign on the cross.

C. The Word of Churning John 19:26 “Behold thy mother”

-Mary stares at the cross through blurred, tear-filled eyes. She has fond memories of her son: his birth in a cold, dark stable; the first time His tiny head grabbed her finger; the times she sang him to sleep. She looks back to the cross. He is naked, thirsty, bloody. What did he do to deserve this?
-It's more than a mother can take. She can't bear to look and she can't bear to look away.
-And there is John – standing between Mary, the mother of Jesus, and his own mother. John put his arm around Mary to comfort her. Mary prays that Heavenly Father will take her son—and his—quickly so that he won't suffer any more.

-Then Jesus speaks.

D. The Word of Rejection Matthew 27:46 "My God...why"
what happens to him God makes His Son pay the debt of sin!!

E. A Burning Word John 19:28 “I thirst”

F. A Word of Distinction from John 19:30 “It is finished”
The task is complete... Payment has been made in full.

G. A Word for Learning Luke 23:46 “Into Your Hands”
He bowed His head and gave up the ghost... But dying men raise their heads to take that last breath. Not Jesus. He bows his head.

IV. The Riches (riches) of the Cross John 19:31-34

- Matthew tells us about the centurion who was on the cross during the last minutes of our Lord's passion on the cross.
The centurion examines the three crosses to make sure the job was done right... that the nails are still holding and everything is as it should be. He stops and reads again the tablet on top of Our Lord's Cross. He has seen many men die on the cross, but none like this! He is amazed at how Jesus reacts to his pain. Jesus has been on the cross for almost six hours.

His legs cramp. His back throbbed, tendons snapping from his shoulders.
- Hanging on a cross, one can breathe in but not breathe out without pushing up with the feet nailed to the cross. For nearly six hours, Jesus pushed up, breathed and released, pushed up, breathed and released, pushed up, breathed and released. That was the only way he could stay alive. Why doesn't he react like the others - swearing, screaming, lashing out.

-Suddenly, darkness begins to fall. It's not a solar eclipse or dust storm. It's more like an enveloping gloom. The air is getting cold, people are afraid. Many consider this a bad omen. Some huddle, others run! The sun refuses to shine for three hours!
- The sin of the world begins to settle on the shoulders of our Savior. If He is to pay the penalty for our sin, He must bear all of its consequences, including the worst - His Father's abandonment.

Jesus cries out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Jesus drinks the bitter dregs of the cup! The Father pours out His wrath for sin on His Son, while His Son becomes sin for us. The darkness veils what the father makes his son suffer in these moments.

- After drinking this bitter cup, his fever worsened; his eyes burn; His throat is parched; His tongue is thickened and stuck to the roof of his mouth - He cries out, "I thirst"...then "It is finished"...then "Into thy hands I commend my spirit."

-As the centurion reads the sign once more, the ground opens up beneath his feet, the earth groans, rocks break, soldiers are thrown to the ground, the three crosses sway into their stone pedestals, stone-sealed tombs are torn loose and the dead are brought to life . The curtain in the temple is torn from top to bottom.

- In His three years of public ministry, Jesus preached from many pulpits...a synagogue, a mountainside, the table, a boat...The cross would be His last pulpit; the crucifixion, his last sermon before his death.

- In a few hours the Passover would begin ... in order not to offend the Jews and desecrate their holy day with men on the cross, he gives the command: “Break their legs!” But when they come to Jesus, he is already dead so the soldier sticks the spear between the fifth and sixth ribs and pierces the heart of Jesus and blood and water come out.

- Soon the Jews would celebrate Passover. They would remember the Exodus, especially the last plague when the angel of death came to take the firstborn son. They would remember how the lamb was slaughtered and the blood smeared on the doorpost as a sign of Passover. That day the Lamb that was slain was Jesus. The doorpost where the blood was smeared was the cross. But when the angel of death came, he did not spare the firstborn son.

-That was the order. His life was not passed over so that yours and mine could be. The beams of the cross became our gateway to heaven.

He took what we deserved!!

"On a hill far away stood an ancient craggy cross, The sign of suffering and shame;........."

The burial of the Lord Jesus
Johannes 19:38-42

"And that he was buried" I Cor. 15:4

It had been a long, tiring, eventful day for the Lord and everyone else involved.
-The day started just after midnight. It was about 12:30 p.m. when Judas led the soldiers into the garden where the Lord Jesus was arrested.
-Jesus faced six trials - three religious; three civilians - where he was dragged from place to place for nearly eight hours.
- During these eight hours he was verbally abused, mocked, beaten, spat on, beaten and tortured.
-Between 7:30 and 8:00 a.m. Pilate handed Jesus over to the soldiers to be crucified and at 9:00 a.m. Jesus was on the cross. He would remain on the cross until 3 p.m. when He breathed last.
-But there was a problem: the Jewish high and holiday Passover was imminent. The body must be taken down from the cross before sunset, when the Jewish Sabbath begins.
-So the body of our Lord had to be taken down from the cross and placed in the tomb by 6:00 p.m. All the work of taking His body down and preparing the body for the tomb, and putting the body in the tomb and moving the stone in front of the tomb's opening - all had to be done in less than three hours.
-But who would do it? His mother with the women? Maybe his disciples? Would his half brother take care of it?

Read the section

All four evangelists tell us about the burial of Jesus, each adding a small detail.

When a loved one dies, a man from the funeral home comes to collect the body. The family selects the coffin, brings the clothes in which to bury the person, and gives special instructions to the director.
- Care is taken to ensure that the loved one looks as natural as possible when placed in the coffin. An obituary and the time of the services are written in the newspaper for all friends to come and pay their respects. Then we have an impressive service in a quiet chapel or a beautiful church. The sweetest songs are sung, comforting scriptures are read, the preacher says a prayer and says a few words of comfort. Then we go to the cemetery, put the body down
into the ground and cover the grave with flowers.

But Jesus had no such burial. His body was wrapped in linen cloths, spices were placed on the cloths to quell the odor of decay, and he was buried hours after his death.
- A very small crowd attended the service, probably only five to ten people - Joseph and Nicodemus and the woman, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James (the less) and Joses, Salome the mother of James and John, and perhaps some of the other women. John and the mother of Jesus were most likely already gone.
-None of his family members were there - his half brothers or sisters. None of his disciples.

I. The preparation for his funeral

When the Romans crucified a man, they left the body to rot on the cross. Sometimes birds swooped in to peck at the meat; often scavenger dogs came together and ate at the carcass. The body could end up in smoldering fires in the city's garbage dump after floating between earth and sky for days. “The body of Jesus Christ should be spared this.” Isaiah the prophet foretold that the righteous servant would make his grave “with the rich in his death” (Isaiah 53:9). This assured Jesus of the best care, and God prepared men who appeared to fulfill the prophecy. God the Father had made arrangements for our Lord's burial.

-Two unlikely men attend to the body of Jesus: Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, who came to Jesus at night.
- The Bible says some good things about these two men. They are both men of position and wealth. They were both religious leaders with good characters. And they were disciples of Christ. But there is one glaring flaw in the lives of these two men - they had little courage...they were shy about their discipleship with Jesus...they were shy about professing Christ openly.
- Both men were members of the Sanhedrin, the very religious group that executed Jesus.
- The writers of the gospels seem to be doing their best to say something good and positive about these two men as they stood by the crowd saying, "Crucify him!"
-Mark says they were good and upright men (Mark 15:43).
- John and Matthew say they were prominent councilors waiting for the kingdom of God. (John 19:38, Matthew 27:27).
-Luke says they did not agree with the decision to kill Jesus (Luke 23:51).

- But no matter how you cut it, they were disciples, but they were secret disciples!
• This is not the first time we have met secret disciples - see John 12:42-43
• Why were they secret disciples? Well, it's no secret!
◦ John 19:38—“for fear of the Jews”
◦ John 12:43 “They love the praise of men more than the praise of God.”
◦ It's the same reasons people are secret disciples today.
• Why does it come on a day when people come out of the closet, declare how sinful they are and demand recognition that many believers don't come out for Christ? You would think we had something to be ashamed of!

The Bible warns against being secret disciples: Luke 9:23; Rome. 10:9-10; Frosted. 10:32-33
• Unless we openly confess Christ and face ridicule, I see no right to feel any different than Pontius Pilate.
◦ It was fear that kept him from doing the right thing.
◦ Do you respect Christ? So does Pilate.
◦ Pilate's testimony was, “I find no guilt in Him.” Yet he did not have the courage to stand up for Him.

Let me show you the dangers of being a secret student:
(1) If you choose to keep your faithfulness to Christ secret, you will be constantly embarrassed. When others are sinning around you - drinking, gambling, swearing - you will be embarrassed not to walk with them in their sin.
(2) It will increase your risk of failure.

(3) It will decrease your usefulness. These two did not approve of Jesus' death, but neither did they oppose it. What if they had spoken up and shared the day of their conversion?
(4) It will cause you to lose fellowship with Jesus. Think about how they could have benefited from three years of intense fellowship and fellowship with Jesus. They could have learned from the doctrine, example, and instructions of our Lord.

But to her credit - it took courage to go to Pilate and ask for the body of Jesus.
• Everyone in Jerusalem would soon hear of her open confession. Some would be shocked... some upset. Some would say, "I suspected it all along." Some would rejoice!
• It took courage because, as prominent members of the religious community, they ran the risk of being excommunicated by the Sanhedrin and the Temple itself.
• Then they would defile themselves by handling a corpse and this would prevent them from attending the Passover celebration.

But how the heavenly Father's heart must have moved and the heavenly hosts applauded for joy when they saw these two Jewish men throw their caution overboard.
• They had been silent when they should have spoken.
• They remained seated when they were supposed to take a stand.
• They had denied their faith when they should have maintained it.

-But not anymore! Although it seemed too late to change anything, they got tired of playing it safe and chose to identify with Jesus in his death because they missed the opportunity to identify with him in his life.

are you a closet christian Tired of hiding your light under a bushel?
Permission granted, Joseph comes with the laundry; Nicodemus with the spices. They hurry because Jesus must be buried before sunset on the Sabbath.

Coming to the cross, they are stunned to see the lifeless lump of torn flesh that was once such a vital Redeemer. A sudden surge of emotion crashes against them, they fall to their knees. They weep for Jesus. They cry for the world that did this. And they cry to themselves. For everything they didn't say. For everything they didn't do. For all the times they stayed in the shadows.

Joseph puts a ladder under the crossbeam and climbs it with unsteady steps. Timid at first, for this is not the work of a rich man, he wrestles with the stubborn nail in Jesus' wrist.

Nicodemus watches from the ground. His robe is stirred by a sudden gust of wind, and the words Jesus spoke to him on a windswept night rustle in his head: "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up."

Awkwardly, Joseph lowers the body onto the outstretched arms of Nicodemus, who stabilizes under the weight. His arms tremble as they wrap around Jesus' torn back, slick with blood.

You lay the body on the ground and step back to compose yourself. They appraise the damage the Romans did. The body lies there, pathetic, in a twisted pose.

His head is pierced by Jerusalem thorns. His face swollen and discolored from Roman fists. His shoulders, thrown out of joint by the gravity of the last six hours. His hands and feet -- drilled and clawed by 7-inch spikes -- bare torn muscle and white bone. His back and chest, the claws of a wild cat with nine tails.

Nicodemus sees the incarnation of the words of Isaiah:
His appearance was so disfigured
Beyond that of a man
And his shape clouded
Beyond Human Resemblance –

The two kneel beside this servant who has suffered so much and gently stroke his blood-stained body with their wet cloths. Nicodemus continues:

"He was despised and rejected by men,
a man of sorrows and acquainted with suffering.
Like one men hide their faces from
he was despised and we did not value him.”

In the silent courtroom of their hearts, they realize that loving Jesus in private was just another way of despising him and not appreciating him. And their hearts condemn them for their sins of omission.

Wiping the chest with a sponge, Joseph's hand touches the nick left by the spear. He looks gravely at Nicodemus while also remembering Isaiah's words:
"He was pierced for our transgressions."

The setting sun accelerates their work. They wrap the body in strips of linen coated with aromatic spices. Both are ashamed that they did not do more to prevent this brutal tragedy. They had influence. Her words carried weight. They could have protested more vigorously. They could have warned the disciples. You could have done something. anything. But no, they had to worry about their careers.

They shoulder this debt and pick up the body to take to Joseph's tomb. Suddenly Nicodemus
remembers another thing from Isaiah's words:
"He was assigned a tomb with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death.”

- Literally it says in Hebrew: “His grave was destined to be with the ungodly; but with the rich man was his grave.”
As Nicodemus says this, he looks at Joseph and they realize they have done something. They spared the Savior the shame of a criminal's funeral where he would have been dumped in the dump outside of town and his body might have been cremated. Jesus was to come forth in the flesh in three days. That could not happen if His body was allowed to remain on the cross and rot. Nor would it be possible to dump his body in the landfill for incineration. God the Father leads these men in His sovereignty to prepare our Lord's body for burial. At His resurrection, His prepared body would show evidence of the nail marks in His hands and feet, the scar where He was stabbed in His side.

The burial, meaning he was actually dead, is part of the gospel. I Kor. 15:1-4

This is the hour of late-blooming love, pulling her out of the shadows... to befriend her savior fearlessly.

II. The Procedures of His Burial John 19:39-40

1. Look at what was used to prepare our Lord for burial:
A. Linen clothing. Throughout the Bible, white linen is a symbol of righteousness—
Revelation 19:8
B. The mixture of myrrh and aloe. This was a resin paste - like the mixture used to seal one piece of linen to another. "As the mixture dried, it yielded a powdered perfume." The two ingredients were strongly aromatic and antiseptic. A dead body as torn and torn as that of our blessed Lord would require an unusually large amount of antiseptics or preservatives lest our Lord's body would see some degree of "corruption" prior to His resurrection.
2. You will find that the mixture of myrrh and aloe weighed about 100 pounds. The custom was to use about half one's body weight in spices; So we can guess that the Lord Jesus weighed 175 to 200 pounds.
3. They prepared the body by rubbing it with myrrh and aloe and then wrapping it with strips of linen. Then they rubbed the mixture over the linen strips. That would seal it and keep the air out. You would start with one finger; then wrap all the fingers in this way, then the hand, arm and whole body. In other words, they covered the body of the Lord Jesus like a mummy.

III. The purpose of his burial

-Jesus was laid in a borrowed tomb. If you borrow something, only use it for a short time, then your need is gone. I wonder how many times Joseph walked by that empty tomb and worshiped the One who said, "I am the resurrection and the life."

- By going there before us, Jesus boldly prepared the way for our transition into and beyond death. Life may be hard at times, but to the saint of God all our troubles will be over when you leave the graveyard behind.

- A preacher has gone missing in rugged West Texas. He came to a farmhouse and knocked on the door. A freckled boy came to the door and the man asked him how he got to a certain destination. "Mister," said the boy, "go two miles further down the road. The road is quite bumpy and sandy but you'll be fine. Then you come to a graveyard. Continue right through the cemetery and on the other side you will find a smooth, paved road that will take you to your destination. It's a pretty bumpy road between here and the graveyard, but when you get to the graveyard all your troubles will be over."
Friends, the road ahead may seem bumpy and hard, but when you reach the end of the road, all your troubles will be over. God's house is right across the cemetery. And because of the man who died for us, this can be your home and mine forever.

- Jeff Rogers preached in northern Mississippi for over 50 years. The last thing he ever said he said at a funeral. One day he was standing at a funeral quoting John 14:1-3. He said: "I really don't
I know what these mansions look like, but I will soon.” He sat down, slumped in his chair, and was dead.

-I don't know what these mansions look like, but I'll know soon. For most of us it won't be long before faith becomes sight.

The not - quite - empty tomb!
Johannes 20:1-18

Before reading the passage

Our Lord had died such a terrible and painful death.
-Six long hours He suffered on the Cross...His body was bruised and torn by wicked men.
-Then, in a hurry to get his body off the cross and into the tomb before sunset, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus had to work quickly to prepare his body and get it into the tomb.
- We are told that Mary Magdalene and the other women were in the shade watching as Joseph and Nicodemus prepared the Lord's body for burial. They knew that Joseph and Nicodemus had to hurry to bring the body to the tomb by 6 p.m. and was probably planning to come back early Sunday morning to take better care of the body.
- The women watched as they placed the body on the cut-out slab inside the tomb. Then they would roll the stone in front of the opening of the tomb.
- The large stone - most of them weighed about a ton - sat on a sloping grove and was wedged with a piece of wood or a stone. When the wedge was removed, the inclination allowed the stone to be easily rolled into place.

- Friday night's work was done before sundown.
- On Saturday morning the religious leaders once again appeared on Pilate's doorstep. It is doubtful that Pilate himself had slept very well either, so he was willing to listen to her plea: "Lord... we remember that while he was alive this deceiver said: "After three days I will rise again." So give the order to secure the tomb until the third day, otherwise his disciples could come and steal the body and tell the people that he rose from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.”
-Did Pilate's heart soar when he heard the Jews quoting Jesus' words about the resurrection?
- Pilate quickly gave instructions: "Set a guard... Go make the tomb as secure as you can."
- They selected an elite Roman guard of four soldiers and posted them at the tomb with strict orders to keep watch twenty-four hours a day. The tomb was sealed by a rope that stretched across the stone covering the entrance. Each end of the rope was attached to either side of the opening with clay. If anyone even tampered with the stone, the sound would break and the deed would become known.

- Early Sunday morning, before dawn, in the dark of night, the soldiers guarded the tomb, knowing that falling asleep on duty was a crime punishable by death.
- Suddenly, without warning, "there was a violent earthquake". The ground they stood on shook under their feet, each drawing their sword and ready for whatever was about to happen.
- Then the darkness was divided by a radiant light. An angel walked over to the stone blocking the tomb's entrance, flicked it away as if it were dust, and then sat on it.
- The gaping hole where the stone had been revealed that there was nothing in the tomb... Well, almost nothing! Jesus had been buried in the tomb late Friday afternoon, but when the stone was rolled away early Sunday morning, his body was gone! Only the empty Shrouds remained in place!

- Ages ago paradise was lost in a garden; it was in a garden, now it would be recovered.
-I want you to see the not quite empty tomb with me:

Read the section:

According to Mark and Luke, at least four women—perhaps more—made their way to the tomb before daybreak—Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James the Less, Joanna, and Salome.
- When they went to the tomb, they began to ask: “Who will roll away the stone for us?” But when they got into the garden, they saw that the tomb was open and empty.

In this passage three scenes are given:

I. Grief - groping faith John 20:1-2

- Can you imagine her feelings? Suppose you had just buried the one you loved the most and suppose that the next morning you learned that someone had gone to the grave and taken the body away. They would of course have been very concerned.
- A few years after the death of Abraham Lincoln, grave robbers broke into the Lincoln family crypt and stole the body of the sixteenth President. Mistaking the body for ransom, the thieves shocked and dismayed the entire nation. The crisis ended when the ransom was paid and the body was recovered and reburied, this time under tons of concrete, in Springfield, Illinois. The shock the nation felt when Lincoln's body was stolen is similar to that felt by Jesus' followers and friends when his tomb was found empty just three days after his death.

- Love put Mary Magdalene on the cross and now love is taking her to His tomb.
- When the women came to the tomb and the stone had been moved, Mary Magdalene concluded that someone had stolen the body. She turned on her heel and ran all the way back to Jerusalem.
- When Mary wanted to tell the disciples about this, they were followed by many questions. Who took the body? The Roman government? The religious leaders? And why? What would you want with it? Did they put Him on display to mock Him further? Did they give him a criminal burial by throwing him outside of town in the garbage fire of the valley of Gehenna?

- If she had continued with the other women, she would have spared herself the added heartache of imagining that his body had been stolen.
-Mark and Luke indicate that the other women left while Mary was on her way to Jerusalem
into the grave and suddenly two angels in sparkling clothes stood beside them and said: "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He is risen!"
- In John 20:2 Mary saw only one fact: the stone had been rolled away. She said to Peter and John, "They took the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they put him." Mary said that the enemies stole his body. The enemies said the disciples stole the body.
- Mary quickly proclaimed that what she had seen was not of God - "They have taken our Lord." God had miraculously intervened, but she saw it as human interference.

- By the way, this stone was not moved to let Jesus out of the tomb, but to let the disciples in!

II. The Relief - Growing Faith John 20:3-9

- Peter and John ran to the grave when Mary told them that someone had stolen the body. John ran away from Peter - maybe because he was younger, or maybe because he hadn't been watching his fat grams. John stopped at the entrance of the tomb, but Peter rushed to the tomb, pushed John aside and went into the tomb, and then John followed Peter into the tomb.

- Relief came:

A. For Peter and John
-John uses three different Greek words for "see" or "sow" (John 20:5,6,8)

(1) In John 20:5 we have the Greek word “blepe”: meaning “to notice”. It's just the function of the eye. It was just physical sight and a means of looking into or looking into it. They saw the cloths lying there, but the fact of the resurrection did not grip their hearts.

(2) In John 20:6-7 we have the Greek word "theorei" from which we get our word "theory".
- Peter faced the evidence but was confused. At that moment he must have been angrier than ever. He thought, “His enemies crucified him; now, to add to the injury, they stole his body.” I think Peter was about to explode!
-See what they saw: the grave cloths lying there on the stone shelf and the face cloth folded in a place by itself - empty!
- The napkin was used not only to cover the face but also to tie the jaw. When a person dies, the mouth often opens and it tends to mar the dead's appearance; There was a great contrast between the raising of Lazarus and the resurrection of Jesus.
-While Lazarus came out with his robes, the body of Jesus, although physical and material, was glorified and could now pass through the robes, much like He later appeared in the locked room.
- And the condition of the grave clothes indicated no struggle, no hasty unpacking of the body by grave robbers, who would not unpack the body anyway, since transport to another place would be easier and more pleasant if it were wrapped and seasoned condition.
-Everything indicated that no one had taken the body, but that it had moved through the cloth and left it in the tomb.
- There are two ways the Shrouds were found: Some believe that when Jesus walked through the Shrouds, the weight of the spices caused the clothing to collapse, similar to filling a balloon with air, wrapping it in cloth and then closing it deflate the balloon, and the cloth collapses.
- The other possibility is that although the shrouds were empty, the form of the corpse was still intact, similar to a locust's shell that has shed its skin and the locust's shell is still clinging to a tree.

(3) John 20:8-9 The Greek word for saw here is eiden, (i-den), meaning discern with understanding. This is not just physical seeing, but spiritual seeing. In other words, it all came together. It clicked for John.
-John started saying, "Peter, Peter! Nobody stole his body! He is risen! Look at how the Shrouds are arranged. It must have gone through your clothes!”

B. For Mary Magdalene John 20:11-17
1. Note John 20:13–15 Both the angels and Jesus asked, "Woman, why are you crying?"
2. Jesus adds: "Who are you looking for?"
3. Jesus speaks a word: "Mary" She speaks a word: "Rabboni"
4. Jesus could have roamed the streets of Jerusalem in triumph. He could have knocked on Pilate's door. He could have confronted the high priest. But the first person our risen Lord appears to is a woman without hope. And the first words He speaks are, "Why are you crying?"
5. Mary is the first to hear his voice... the first to touch him... the first to be commissioned by him... the first to bring the good news that he is alive!
6. Look how Maria reacted... She hugged him and didn't want to let him go for fear of losing him again.
• Notice John 20:17 - KJV says, "Don't touch me" or better: "Don't hold onto me" "Don't try to hold my physical presence here on earth."
• Some have said that Jesus did not want anyone to touch him because he had not yet ascended to his Father. Nevertheless, he invited Thomas to touch him.
• Others have said that he didn't want to be touched because his body was in bad shape and partially decomposed...but that can't be for Ps. 16:8-11 says that God the Father promised that his son would see no corruption...and besides, he was in his glorified body when he came out of the grave.
7. There is a wonderful little glimpse of John 20:10 - Peter and John went home - Mary the mother of Jesus was there. How pleased she must have been when they told her what they had seen.

III. Faith - Shining Faith John 20:18

Someone put her testimony into a song: "I've Just Seen Jesus"

We knew he was dead... It is done, he said
We'd watched his life ebb away
Then we all stood around until the guards brought him down
Joseph asked for his body that day.
It was late afternoon when we got to the tomb
Wrapped up his body and sealed the tomb
Oh I know how you feel, his death was so real
But please listen and hear what I'm saying:

I just saw Jesus...I'm telling you he's alive
I just saw Jesus... Our precious Lord lives
And I knew He really saw me too
And until now I have never lived
Everything I did before doesn't matter anymore
I just saw Jesus and I will never be the same again.

It was His voice that she heard for the first time, those kind, gentle words
Ask what was the reason for the tears
And I looked to despair, my master is not there

And he said, "Child, it's me... I'm here!"
I've just seen Jesus... I'm telling you he's alive
I just saw Jesus... our precious Lord lives
And I knew He really saw me too
And until now I have never lived
Everything I did before doesn't matter anymore
I just saw Jesus and I will never be the same again!

There is good news! JESUS ​​LIVES!

Deep in the grave he lay, Jesus, my Savior!
Expect the coming day, Jesus my Lord!

In vain they watched His bed, Jesus my Savior!
In vain they seal the dead, Jesus my Lord!

Death cannot hold its prey, Jesus my Saviour!
He broke the bolts, Jesus, my Lord!

From the grave He arose in mighty triumph over His enemies
He rose victorious from the dark domain, and he lives forever with his saints to reign
He got up... He got up! Hallelujah! Christ is risen!

Let me tell you what that means for those of us who have trusted him. Because he lives, we will live too.

Winston Churchill arranged his own funeral service. It was to take place at St. Paul's Cathedral. He chose the great hymns of faith that would be sung at his funeral. He chose the Scripture that would be read and some of the things that would be said in his home. When he died, his wishes were fulfilled to the letter. There was an element of surprise in the service. Right at the end of the service, he had arranged for a trumpeter to start playing “taps” up in the cathedral attic, where no one could see him… taps, the universal sound of the end of the day. Then silence... a period of silence. Then, after the rest period, Churchill had arranged for the trumpeter to play a game of reveille... it's time to get up, it's time to get up, it's time to get up in the morning!

I Thess. 4:16-18 He is no longer in a tomb but on a throne!

The man who missed Sunday night's service
Johannes 20:19-29

Here is the setting: Our Lord has already died on the cross. He was in the grave for three days and now he has risen. The disciples are in the Upper Room; ten of them, that is. Judas is dead and Thomas is not with the other disciples for some reason.

It's Sunday morning; the first Easter Sunday! That first Easter Sunday had been a busy day. Our risen Lord appeared four times that day.
• He appeared first to Mary Magdalene and then to the other women.
• He appeared to the two men on the way to Emmaus (Luke 24).
• Then he appeared to Simon Peter (Mark 16:7). Peter had failed the Lord. He had denied Him. Peter needed to know that the Lord had forgiven him and that he could still be used by the Lord.
• He then met with the ten disciples in the Upper Room (John 20:19-23).

These ten disciples received four things from the risen Lord that night:

A. His presence - John 20:19

Jesus has appeared! There is nothing more beautiful than being in the presence of the Lord! "In his presence there is joy forever and ever." "Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord."
(Johannes 20:20b)

B. His peace—John 20:19b

He calmed her fears. His peace covers all our fears and insecurities.

C. His proof

I wonder how those disciples felt when he showed them his scars. These scars were proof that their sins were forgiven.
-The story is told by a woman who was dying. She had been raised Roman Catholic but had known Christ as her personal Savior for many years and had long stopped going to confession, doing penance, and attending the Catholic Church. Instead, she studied her Bible and met with like-minded people. As she lay on her deathbed, some well-meaning relatives sent the pastor to see her. He offered to hear her confession and give her absolution. The woman said to the priest, "Show me your hands." The priest held out his hands and the woman examined them. Then she turned to the priest and said: “You are a fraud, sir. The one who forgives my sins has nail marks in his hands.”

D. His power—John 20:22

The word for "breath" is the same word used in Genesis when God breathed into Adam and he became a living soul.

But eight days later there was a fifth appearance of our risen Lord - John 20:24-29.

When we think of the Apostle Thomas, two words often come to mind: "Doubt Thomas." Our Lord never called him Doubting Thomas, but we do so because of what we read in this passage.

The truth is that Thomas doubted, but he wasn't alone when it came to doubts.

1.John the Baptist doubted when he was in prison and about to die. He sent disciples to ask Jesus, "Are you the Christ, or are we looking for another?" (Matthew 11). John the Baptist doubted, but we don't call him Doubting John.

2. Mary Magdalene went to Jesus' tomb on Easter Sunday and did NOT find Him. Through tears she thought Jesus was the gardener and said to him, "Tell me where you put it." She doubted, and yet we do not call her "doubting Mary".

3. When Jesus appeared to the ten disciples in the Upper Room, they thought Jesus was a spirit. He showed them his scars and invited them to touch his hands, saying, "A spirit has neither flesh nor bones as you see in me."

Thomas was a doubter, but he was a believer. A better term to describe him would be "Thomas the Questioner".

Matthew, Mark, and Luke record nothing that Thomas said, but John records three questions.

Two things I want to highlight about Thomas:

I. Thomas' Questions

Thomas speaks three times in the Gospel of John. Here we see:

A. His Devotion—John 11:1, 16

Our Lord had been told that his friend Lazarus was sick to death. The disciples did not want Jesus to return to Bethany because the Jews had tried to stone him there. Jesus said, “We're going back.” You can almost hear them talking among themselves, “But he's going to be killed. We could all be killed." Then Thomas spoke: "Let us also go and die with him."
- Well, that was a grim prospect, but the words of Thomas silenced her objections and inspired her to follow her master to the jaws of death. Peter may have been the leader of the group, but it was Thomas who roused their courage.
- You can't help but like and admire anyone who is willing to die for Jesus. Thomas' HEAD may be crooked, but his HEART is straight as an arrow. For Thomas there may be death, but never disloyalty. There may be doubt, but never disloyalty. He might have had a thousand unanswered questions, but it never occurred to him to deny Jesus.

B. His reflection—John 14:1-5

Thomas had a question and had the courage to ask it. It is better to ask a question than to pretend you have all the answers and remain in ignorance.

C. His Doubt John 20:24-25

This is the weak and ugly side of Thomas. Why was he missing? If he was anything like the people who miss church today, he may have come up with a number of excuses.

• He may have said I've worked hard all week and Sunday is the only day I have for myself or my family. I am tired!

Someone wrote a true confession entitled, “Lord, I lied!” It went like this: “Lord Almighty, as I sit here tonight surrounded by newspapers and television, it just occurred to me that I lied to you and to myself . I said I was too tired to go to church tonight. That wasn't true. I would have gone to a baseball game or any place I wanted to go. Being too tired seemed to cover up my indifference. God have mercy on me. I lied to you and myself. I'm not too tired, I'm indifferent. Warm my cold heart, oh god, 'cause that's the real reason I stayed home. Amen."

• He may have lost hope. He believed that right had been defeated by wrong; good through evil. So what's the use?

• The real reason was that he didn't expect Jesus to be there. He did not believe that Christ rose from the dead. He ended up telling the others, “You go and mourn together if you want, but He won't be there. Many people think that Jesus might show up on Sunday morning but not on Sunday evening or Wednesday evening.

The bottom line is that people miss worship because they lack one thing: devotion. No matter how you slice it, it all comes down to engagement!

We deprive ourselves of many advantages if we do not worship together in the house of the Lord. Thomas missed several.

1. He missed the opportunity for worship.

I've heard people say, “You don't have to come to church to worship God. You can worship God anywhere – on the golf course, in the woods, by the lake.” I would like to say three things: Yes, you can worship God “out there”, but do you do it? "Out there" are your thoughts on other things: the golf ball, the buck, the bass. If your thoughts are with God, you will be in his house, in his church. The truest worship takes place in the place designated for his worship and service. Second, God intended believers to worship together. There is something about fellowship with believers that cannot be achieved alone. Believers encourage one another and support one another and inspire one another. Third, Jesus said, "Where two or three are gathered in my name, I will be in their midst."

2. He missed the presence of the Lord

Have you ever tried to tell someone who missed a great service what they missed? If you've ever missed a great experience with Jesus, you've missed it. You can hear about it, but there's nothing quite like being there and experiencing it for yourself.

3. He missed fellowship with other believers.

Two of the twelve were absent that night - Judas and Thomas. Judas had betrayed the Lord. He was dead. Where was Thomas? We don't know, but look at the society he's joined! His influence for Christ was hurt because he wasn't where he should have been.

4. He did not see the risen Lord.

When he saw Jesus the next Sunday, Jesus challenged him to do what he had to do to believe that Jesus was alive. Jesus asked Thomas to put his hand on his side. When Thomas saw the Lord, he said, "My Lord and my God!"

5. He missed the anointing of the Holy Spirit and empowered them for ministry.

6. He missed the commission from the Lord. John 20:21b

7. He missed the peace and joy that only comes from Jesus. John 20:19, 21, 26

That's a lot to miss because your engagement level isn't where it should be!

II. Thomas' quest - John 20:28-29

Thomas called Jesus "My Lord and my God!" He would give Jesus everything because Jesus had given everything for him.

I gave my life for you
I have shed my precious blood
that you could be redeemed
And raised from the dead
I gave, I gave my life for you
what did you give me

The true last words of Christ
Johannes 20-21

For as long as I can remember, ministers have preached on what is called the "Seven Last Words of Christ."
-We usually hear the sermon series in the weeks leading up to Easter.
- But when they speak of the seven last words of Christ, they speak of those words that Jesus spoke in the hours immediately before His death by crucifixion.
• “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they are doing” Luke 23:34
• “Woman, behold your son; Son, behold your mother” John 19:26
• “Today you will be with me in paradise” Luke 23:43
• “I thirst” John 19:28
• “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Mark 15:34; Frosted. 27:46
• “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” Luke 23:46
• “It is finished” John 19:30

Those were the last words of Christ spoken on the cross, but they were not the last words Christ spoke on earth.
- In fact, the Gospel of John gives us seven last words of Christ, spoken after his resurrection, which are just as important and carry as much meaning as the words commonly accepted as the seven last words.

I. The Word of Comfort

- The risen Lord had already appeared to Mary Magdalene and told her to go back to the disciples and tell them that she had seen the risen Lord.
- On the evening of the day of his resurrection from the dead, Jesus appeared to the disciples in the upper room. Everyone was there except Thomas.
- We speak of doubting Thomas, but the rest of the disciples also had doubts. Mary told them what she had seen; they wanted to believe; They wanted it to be true, but there were still some doubts.
- The disciples were terrified in the upper room when Jesus appeared. He knew their fear, so He said, "Shalom be with you."
- Shalom was a very common greeting for the Jews and meant something like "God bless you". It speaks of harmony in personal relationships, but when Jesus spoke of peace, he meant more than God bless you. He tried to calm their fears, give them comfort and encouragement to cheer them up.

But it goes deeper. He offered two kinds of peace that come as a result of his death on the cross and his resurrection from the grave.

A. It means peace with God
- According to the Bible, people are at war with God. They are opposed to Him; so it was up to God to make peace through the cross of Christ.
-And that peace must be on God's terms. If you want peace in your heart, there is no room for bargaining. You must receive it as God provides. Jesus died to make peace. If you want to enter into His peace, you must believe in Jesus and what He has done.

-Romans 5:1
-Jesus, through his atoning death on the cross, made peace for sinners between his father and all who trust in him.

B. It is the peace of God Phil. 4:6-7
It is the peace of mind that is promised to the believer, based on unshakable confidence that God is able and willing to do what is best for His children. It's a military term, meaning "to oversee." God's peace protects believers from fear, anxiety and distress.

II. The Word of Commission John 20:21

- The missionary commission occurs five times in the NT, once at the end of each of the four gospels and once in the opening chapter of Acts.
-The repetition is significant. Everything God says is important; when something is repeated more than once, it is especially important. In addition, in this case the emphasis is different.
• Matthew emphasizes the authority of the Lord - Matthew. 28:18-19
• Mark - emphasis on Final Judgment Mark 16:16
• Luke presents the commission as the fulfillment of prophecy - Luke 24:44-47
• Acts presents a program for worldwide evangelization—Acts 1:8
• John's version is unique in that it connects our commission to our Lord's prior commission.
- The words of John are linked to the first of the seven last words, which occurs just two verses earlier (John 20:19). Lest we miss the connection, John repeats it in the verse that is our text. (John 20:21).

_This is no coincidence. We must have peace ourselves, both within and without, before we can effectively share the gospel of peace with others.

- These words are a command to evangelize - "As my Father sent me, so I send you."
-This is where many of us fail. We have withdrawn from the world instead of invading the world.
-We've retreated to where it's nice or safe or not threatening. We spend millions of dollars sending faithful men and women overseas to preach the gospel, but we will not go to our neighbors because we are uncomfortable.
-I Tim. 1:15 We must also share the gospel if we are to be faithful to our Lord's commission.

III. The Word of Comfort John 20:22-23

- One of the points at which Roman Catholic and Protestant theology diverges is the interpretation of John 20:22-23.
- On the basis of these and other passages, the Roman Church built its doctrine of a special priesthood entrusted with the power of absolution from sins. This practice and authority is exercised through the confessional.
- Most Catholics would recognize that it is God who forgives sin and does so on the basis of Christ's death, but would add that God does so in response to the priest's action, so God forgives when the priest acquits, and where priests do not acquit, God allows sin and judgment to stand.

-Let me give you three reasons why Catholics are wrong on this point;
(1) Scripture teaches that no one can forgive sins except God alone. Mark 2:5-7
(2) There is no instance in the N.T. an apostle who assumes the power to acquit or pardon anyone.
(3) Believers other than the apostles were present when Jesus spoke these words, and so any authority Jesus gave was to Christians in general as well as to the apostles.

- Then what is the meaning of the passage? This verse does not give Christians the authority to forgive sins. Jesus said that because of the work of His Son, the believer can boldly proclaim the assurance of the Father's forgiveness of a sinner when that sinner has repented and believed the gospel. The believer can also say with certainty to those who do not respond to the message of God's forgiveness through faith in Christ that their sins are consequently unforgiven.

IV. The Word of Challenge John 20:27

-If I asked you what nickname you would give Thomas, everyone would probably say: "Thomas doubtful."
-Thomas was indeed a doubter. He didn't lack courage, loyalty, or devotion to Jesus, but he had a dark mood. He saw the darker side of things.
- John is the only evangelist who tells us everything Thomas said. Thomas speaks three times in the Gospel of John, and three times his attitude is somber.
(1) John 11 Jesus learns that his friend Lazarus is sick. In John 10 the Jews tried to take hold of Jesus, but he escaped their grasp. Now Jesus tells them that he is returning to Bethany near Jerusalem. They ask Jesus not to go back, but he makes it clear that he is going. Thomas speaks and says, "Let's go too, so we can die with him." His words were honest, loyal, and brave, but not too cheerful. They were pretty grim.
(2) John 14 Jesus told the disciples that he was going away. He spoke of heaven and a place where he would prepare for her. Thomas steps up and says, "We don't know where you're going, so how can we know the way?"
(3) John 20 All the other disciples except Thomas had seen the risen Lord, and he said, "I will not believe unless I put my finger in the print of his nail."

-Thomas was a believer, but he sure had trouble with doubts!
-In Mark 9 a man brings his demon-possessed son to the disciples for them to cast out the demon. The disciples couldn't cast out the demon, so he takes his son to Jesus, explains that there is nothing his disciples can do to help his son, and says, "If you can, do whatever you can to help him." Jesus interrupted him in the middle of a sentence. "If I can do anything! If you believe, all things are possible.” The man replied, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief." There I am often... "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief.”
-Jesus said to Thomas, "Stop doubting and start believing."

V. The Word of Praise John 20:29

-Jesus says that some only seem to have faith when they have evidence. It is an inferior faith that must have evidence, but it is a superior faith that simply settles for what Jesus says - without visions or miracles or evidence.
-What is faith? Faith means believing God based on His Word and then acting on it.

- It's that kind of faith that God blesses.
- Notice how John 20 ends - See John 20:30-31

VI. The Word of Providence John 21:15-17

- "Feed my sheep" Jesus assigned Peter a task... "Feed my sheep!"
- "Take care of my sheep for me." What a great responsibility! Jesus entrusted his sheep to Peter.
- It will take hard work, humility, understanding, sacrifice and patience to care for spiritual sheep. He calls us all to do this. Take care of his sheep.

VII. The Word of Calling or Invitation John 21:19-22

- The Gospel of John begins and ends with Jesus saying, “Follow me!”
-How? "If anyone wants to follow me, they must deny themselves, take up their cross and follow me."
- "Turn your back on everything else and follow Me."
-Hebrews 12:1-2 captures the meaning of our Lord. Follow his example.
- This is the main difference between a joyless Christian and a joyful Christian; a vanquished and a victor. The cheerless Christian may have followed Christ generally, but not wholeheartedly. The cheerful Christian, on the other hand, has found satisfaction in whatever God bestows on him.

Have breakfast with Jesus
Johannes 21:1-14

Before reading the Scriptures

If you read the gospel of John, it seems that John will end his gospel with chapter 20.
1. Johannes 20:30-31
2. Then he picks up the pen again. I believe there are three reasons why the Holy Spirit caused John to add this last chapter:
A. John wanted his readers to know that Peter was restored as an apostle by the Lord Jesus. I believe John loved Simon Peter as a dear brother in Christ. The other evangelists had written that Peter had denied the Lord, but none of them had written a detailed account of the atonement that took place between Jesus and Simon Peter and the new commission Jesus gave to Simon Peter. Leaving aside the information in this chapter, we would wonder why Peter was so prominent in the first twelve chapters of Acts.
B. John wanted to disprove a foolish rumor that had spread among the believers that he would live until the Lord's return (John 21:23). John makes it clear that our Lord's words were greatly misunderstood.
C. John wanted to encourage us with the truth that failure is not final. Peter had failed, but Jesus would restore and use him again.
3. Jesus had already risen from the dead. Twice he appeared to his disciples
after his resurrection. Now he will appear to them again and invite them to have breakfast with him.

Today I want to speak directly to those who are not as close to the Lord today as they should be. Perhaps the things of God are not as sweet as they used to be. Maybe there isn't a hot, burning love for the Lord, His house, His Word, and His people like there used to be. Perhaps even going to church has become a drudgery. My job today is to tell you that it doesn't have to stay that way! Jesus Christ is still the friend of the fallen today.

I. The Backsliders John 21:1-3

-When the women came to visit the tomb that first Easter morning, you will remember that Mary Magdalene, seeing the stone rolled away and the tomb empty, ran to tell the disciples that someone had stolen the body of our Lord. But an angel appeared to the other woman after Mary left.
- In Mark 16:7 we are told that the angel told the women to go and tell the disciples of the Lord AND PETER that the Lord was indeed risen.

- The risen Lord had already appeared to the disciples on two other occasions. He appeared to them in Jerusalem. Now Jesus tells them to travel 80 miles to Galilee and wait for his appearing.

- We do not know how long Peter and the other disciples waited for the appearance of our Lord, but
Peter got tired of waiting and said, "I'm going fishing." And six of the other disciples say:
"We go with you."
-Peter was a born leader... but being a leader comes with great responsibility. All six other disciples said - without asking Peter: "We go with you."
- No one said: “But, Peter, our Lord told us to wait for him here. Don't you think we should stay here?"
- Don't miss this truth: we never relapse alone... and the more influence we have, the more people relapse with us. It can be friends or family.

-What do you do when you disappoint a friend?
• After you've cried until you're stunned... After you've repeated failure over and over in your head... after you've beaten yourself down and can't think of any more names to name?
• How do you deal with the pain? Peter dealt with it by going fishing.
• He thought he could forget his failure out on the water.
• But the sea refused to let him forget. As the waves pounded against the boat, his thoughts went back to a time when Jesus was in a boat with him and the other disciples and a storm was brewing. Jesus slept in the boat. They woke Jesus and he calmed the storm.
• Then he remembers walking on water with Jesus in another storm—at least for a little while.
• I wonder if Jesus intentionally delayed joining his disciples in Galilee to test their patience and obedient devotion in life. If so, Peter failed the test.

Have you noticed that sin loves company? Usually, when a person relapses, they are not satisfied with doing everything on their own and will try to drag others down with them. You see it in families all the time! One grows cold to the Lord and soon everyone in the family is outside of God's will.

What a shame when we feel the need to drag others into the same stupid pit we've put ourselves in! Equally sad is the fact that there always seem to be those willing to follow the wayward child of God! Why are things like this? Because we like to surround ourselves with people who are about the same level as us. When we are right with God, we want to be with others who are right with God. When we are outside of God's will, we feel disciplined by the lives of those who live for the Lord and seek those like us. Unfortunately, we will often try to reproduce our spiritual temperature in the lives of those close to us. This is just an attempt to make yourself more comfortable.

It is interesting to note who is on that list in John 21:1-3

-Have you noticed that Peter and Thomas perform together? This is significant!
• Thomas: The doubter and unbeliever. But Jesus had addressed his problem in John 20.
• Peter: The denier. We are in the process of receiving a detailed report on its restoration and re-commissioning
• Then Nathaniel, James and John and most likely Andrew and Phillip.
✗ These are the same disciples found in John 1. Jesus didn't lose any of them.

✗ But you cannot overlook the fact that the church is made up of doubters, deniers, and sinners of many kinds; but forgive people. Not people with superhuman beliefs, but normal, forgiven people with everything
the mistakes we have!

II. Barrenness John 21:3

"They didn't catch anything that night". This is the commentary on anyone who strays from Christ. When you decide to walk away from Christ, I can describe your life: Life loses its meaning; the enthusiasm is gone; joy is gone. It can be summed up in one word - infertility. You didn't catch anything.
God is alerting you that something is wrong in your life when nothing is happening.
- Peter seems to have returned to the old lifestyle from which Jesus called him.
- Have you reverted to your old lifestyle after a dramatic failure in your commitment to live for Christ? Spending time in the old places, with your old friends, using your old vocabulary, feeling at home among the old and familiar things of your past?
-Peter may have even enjoyed those first moments on the boat. It felt good to be back on the decks. But it was short lived. Hours passed and Peter fished all night but caught nothing.

Your mental state shows in you! It shows in the priority you give to the things of God. Don't think for a minute that you are deceiving anyone. No one, that is, except yourself! You can expect to lose much by walking away from the Lord. You can never lose your salvation, but you will feel that you have. You can certainly lose your fellowship with the Lord.
There will be loss of peace, joy and contentment. There will be loss of blessings and rewards. Sin is a cruel disciplinarian.

- There was a certain man who faithfully worshiped with other believers for many years. Then he became careless and stopped coming to church services. The pastor was burdened with his spiritual well-being, so one day he stopped by his home. The man invited him in and offered him a seat by the fire. The pastor mentioned to the man how much he missed seeing him at services. The man replied that he was saved and saw no need to go to church. He felt that he could worship well at home.

For a few long moments they sat in silence, watching the burning embers. Then the pastor took the tongs, took out a hot charcoal and placed them one by one on the hearth stone. As it began to cool, its red glow soon faded. The man, who had expected a verbal rebuke, quickly understood the message. At the next service he was in the church!

III. The Waving John 21:4-5

- In Greek, this is formulated in the form of a question: "Children, you haven't caught anything, have you?"
-When you're fishing and haven't caught anything, the last thing you want is someone asking you if you caught anything!!

- Note John 21:6-11 (This is the only miracle that took place between the resurrection and the ascension.)

- As they threw the net to the other side of the boat, the net started twirling with fish - - big fish. They must have been screaming and laughing and having a good time... back then
John said, "Peter, this is the Lord."
- Peter jumped into the water to swim to Jesus... But while he was swimming I wonder if he
thought back to Luke 5 when Jesus told him to go to the deep part of the lake and let out the nets.
- At that time Jesus said to Peter: “Follow me”, and Peter left everything behind and followed Him... and here he is again fishing.

IV. The Brokenness John 21:9-14

- What did Peter think when he saw the charcoal fire?
- What did Jesus want to say to him? Would Jesus ever let him serve him again?
- Peter swam to the Lord and led the other disciples to the Lord. It takes a great man to admit he's wrong in front of others.

-Hear the words: Come and Dine! Come and have fellowship with me!

What a joy to know that when we fail, Jesus wants to restore us—even more than we want to be restored ourselves!

Sometimes when we fail the Lord, we may know the Lord has forgiven us, but it's hard to forgive ourselves.
- Jesus knows this, and yet, just as He took the initiative to go to Peter, He comes to us not only to forgive but also to restore.

Someone said, "Jesus can mend a broken heart if we give him all the pieces." And you? Have you turned away from the Lord? He wants to restore you.

The supreme question of the Christian
Johannes 21:15-25

Before reading the passage

In John 20, our risen Lord appeared to the disciples twice as a group—once without Thomas, and then eight days later with Thomas present.
• Then Jesus instructs the disciples to leave Jerusalem and go 80 miles to Galilee and wait for him there. We don't know how long they waited in Galilee before Peter got tired of waiting and said he was going fishing. Six of the disciples said, "We'll go with you." They fished all night and caught nothing.
• Then this beautiful scene takes place with Jesus on the shore and the disciples in the boat, and Jesus instructs them to cast the net on the other side of the boat. And when they do, the water starts bubbling with fish and they have caught 153 big fish... and Jesus invites them to "come and eat" - come and join him around the breakfast he has prepared.

• Breakfast is now over and we are about to be given the details of Peter's restoration and restoration, for Peter had deserted his Lord and denied Him three times.

What does God expect of us? From you and me?
• Billy Graham's daughter, Anne Graham Lotz, recounts in her book Just Give Me Jesus how she was invited to attend a Christian Leadership Institute. The keynote speaker at the institute was a godly elderly Bible teacher whose British accent made everything he said profound and God seemed to speak through him. During the conference, the speaker asked, "Do you know what God wants you to do?" After a short pause, he answered his own question in a way that told Anne she had never forgotten. To the hushed audience he simply replied, "Fail!"
• Ann said she was stunned. She thought, "Surely he'll explain himself." Then he repeated, "All God ever expects of you is failure." Anne said she wanted to raise her hand, wave it wildly, and yell, "I can live up to expectations." fulfill God! I know how to fail!” Then, with a smile and a wink, the speaker said firmly, “But…God gave you the Holy Spirit so you never have to fail.”
• There is a secret to successfully leading a Christian life. God would never expect more of me than the Holy Spirit would do in and through me if I gave Him the freedom to do so.
• God created us in the first place. God knows how he formed us and remembers that we are but dust.
• I'm just a little dust person imbued with the breath of God.
• And God wants to use us for his glory! But we have to get his supreme question right if he can use us.

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I think it's worth noting that Jesus waited until after dinner before confronting Simon. After the meal, the disciples felt comfortable and ready to receive any word that might come
from the lips of Jesus.

• While the other disciples listened in silence, Jesus turned and spoke directly to Peter. "Simon, do you love me?"
• No one likes to be asked about an area of ​​life where they can't keep up with their best. Anyone who has had such experiences can easily identify with Peter.
• Was Jesus cruel to Peter when he asked him this question in front of the other disciples? No... the disciples also needed to know what was in Peter's heart.
• No one likes to be questioned about failure, but if you want to overcome that failure, you must face the failure and then move on... let the failure use it to make you stronger.
• Didn't Jesus know whether Peter loved him or not? Of course he knew. He knows the depth of every heart. But he had to get Peter to publicly declare his love.
• Peter never asked Jesus if he loved him...but Jesus asked Peter.

Notice some parallels between this scene and the incident of the three denials:
-Both events took place around a charcoal fire.
- In both of these accounts, Peter is called "Simon Peter" (the Spirit of God that inspired the writing of the Gospel through John always uses the name "Simon" to indicate the ancient nature of Peter, the one who falters; not the Rocky Apostles.)
- In both reports Peter is asked three times and has to answer three times - either three denials or three declarations of love.

Why would Jesus ask Peter about his love for him?
-Because there is nothing more important to God than our love for Him.
-Deut. 6:4-5
-Without love for God everything we do or say is worthless - 1 Cor. 13 ... speak in the tongues of men and of angels ... faith moves mountains ... we give our goods to feed the poor ... and sacrifice our bodies to be burned.

Consider with me the supreme question of the Christian. It's about:

I. Compare John 21:15

"More than these" - We do not have the privilege of seeing where Jesus' eyes looked or where He gestured. There are at least four possibilities:

A. Do you love me more than these fish?

1. Do you love me more than your livelihood...more than your accomplishments...more than your financial security?
2. Each of these fish represented dollar signs to them. They were status symbols. They were her achievements. do you love me more than this
3. Three years earlier Jesus had called Peter out of the fish trade; now he's going back.
4. What is there in your life that catches your attention; that requires you to give your time, your energy, your love, your priority to Jesus?
5. If Jesus had said that, he might have said, "Simon, if this is a priority in your life,
Just leave these fish in the hot sun for three hours and see what happens to them. What you considered a priority in your life begins to smell, to deteriorate, to putrefy. What you've prioritized over time will be nothing at all - except that you'd like to get rid of it."
6. I wonder as I preach if some of you think about your work what
do you have to do there tomorrow...or are you thinking of a pleasure, golf, camping, hunting trip?

B. Do you love me more than these friends?
1. Are you more committed to Me than to your friends?
2. You think a lot about what your friends think of you, don't you Peter? What they think and what their opinion is of you carries a lot of weight with you, doesn't it?
3. Is fellowship with them more important than fellowship with me?
4. Peer pressure is not limited to young people. Adults are often worse.

C. Do you love me more than these other followers love me?
1. Remember that before Peter denied Jesus, he claimed to love Jesus more than he did
all disciples. "All men may leave you, Lord, but I will give my life for you," he said.
2. Peter clearly saw himself as more faithful and dedicated than the other disciples.
3. Simon was like many of us. He explained more than delivered.
4. Jesus was interested in how much Peter loved him.

D. Do you love me more than your folly?
• Your old way of life? The ancient places and people and practices. Finally Peter turned around
back to the old way for a while.

II. Correction

- The first time Jesus asked Peter, "Do you love me?" the word Jesus used for love was "agape." It is the fullest, highest, richest, most unconditional love we will ever experience. It is the love described in John 3:16.
- Peter's answer to this first question was not: "Yes, Lord, I meet you", but "Yes, Lord, you know that I Phileo you ... I like you as a dear friend."
- The third time Jesus asked: "Simon, do you like Phileo - how - me?" Peter answered: "Lord, you know everything, you know that I Phileo - I like you."

The conversation between Jesus and Peter actually went like this:
• "Simon, son of John, do you really love me more than these?"
"Yes, Lord, You know that I like You as a dear friend."

• "Simon, son of John, do you really love me?"
"Yes, Lord, You know that I like You as a dear friend."

• "Simon, son of John, do you like me as a dear friend?"
“Lord, You know everything; You know I like you as a dear friend.”

The third time, John could tell from the look on Simon's face and the tone of his voice that Jesus had grieved Peter by asking him the question three times.
- It is the only time that we read of Jesus grieving a human soul, because He came to heal and to console it. But Jesus only did this because it was good for Peter.

- Notice that every time Peter answered the Lord's question, he acknowledged the Lord's inward knowledge of his heart.
- “Lord, You know everything. You know because you are omniscient. You already know what you see in my heart. You now know the amount of love I have for you.”
- Jesus asks us: “Do you love me?” Be honest! He knows your heart!

Why didn't Peter confess his love for Jesus agape?
- I believe Peter said, “Lord, I will no longer boast of my great love for you. How can I do the way I failed? I've already shown my weakness and denial. It would be dangerous for me to boast when I am so likely to fail.”
- "Lord, compared to your great love for me, I can only say that I like you as a dear friend."

do you love jesus why do you love him The 16th-century Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier described his love for the Lord thus:

Why, O blessed Jesus Christ
Shouldn't I love you well?
Not to win heaven
Or escape from hell.

Not with the hope of winning things
Nor do I seek a reward;
But when you proved your love to me
O ever loving Lord.

And so I love you and will love,
And all your praise sings;
Because you are my loving God,
And my eternal king.

III. Engagement

Here's a call to action!
-Love can only be revealed by action. Words alone cannot reveal love. Even if God were to write the words "God is love" in the clouds in letters of fire, it would mean nothing to us.
-Love must be expressed! In blood-red ink, Jesus wrote his death message to us. It says, "I love you!"
-John 15:13 "Greater love has none than this..."
-Rome. 5:8 "God has shown us his love..."

- Now the Lord commissions Peter to "feed his lambs... to tend his sheep... to feed his sheep".
-Because of the riches of God's grace, Peter was a greater disciple and a greater preacher because of the response to his fall.

- When Jesus told Peter to feed his sheep, it shows the completeness of forgiveness.
- If only Jesus had said, "Your sin is forgiven...your trespasses are blotted out...your iniquity is covered," that would have been one thing. But also to say, "Feed my sheep," is complete forgiveness—not just forgiven, but trusted!

-We hear a lot about falling from grace. Did this happen when Peter denied the Lord? No, he did not fall from grace; he fell into grace, for Jesus not only forgave him, but entrusted the Lord's sheep to him!
-O, the riches of God's grace!!

do you love jesus

I love you, I love you, I love you sir
But how much I love you, my actions will show.

Some may be more educated than you...some may be more insight than you...some may be more skillful than you...but no one can love more than you.

Lord, what about my brother
Johannes 21:17-25

Look again at the two words Jesus spoke to Simon Peter in John 21:19. "Follow me."
1. The last command Peter received from the Lord was the same as the first command he heard from Jesus...Follow me.
2. Follow me...learn from me...follow my example...continue to follow...never slack off.

These final verses of the Gospel of John focus again on our Lord's dealings with Simon Peter.

I. The Revelation of Peter from the Lord John 21:17-18

- Jesus has just commissioned Peter to preach the gospel. Now he tells him that life will not be a walk in the park for him. Difficulties will beset him from all sides, and he will eventually meet a violent death.
- The servants of Christ never have an easy life. Not only are their lives full of burdens and responsibilities, but they must also suffer criticism, persecution, and false accusations.

-But that's to be expected. Here is what Jesus said:
A. “In this world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have conquered the world.”
B. Again He said, "Blessed are ye when men revile and persecute you, and falsely say all sorts of evil things against you for my sake..."
C. Psalm 34:19 … “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of all.”

-We learn a wonderful truth in these verses; and that is, the future history of Christians, both in life and in death, is foretold by Christ.
A. There is no luck, chance or coincidence in the life of a Christian. Everything from start to finish is predictable...arranged by someone too wise to make a mistake and too loving to harm us.
B. Jesus foretold the death of Simon Peter... even the manner in which he would die. Jesus told him that he would die on the cross (see John 21:18). Like his Lord, Peter lived in the shadow of the cross.
C. I am thankful that the Lord did not tell us our future as Peter did. If the Lord told us that nine (9) good things and one bad thing were going to happen to us this month, most of us would worry about the one bad thing. Nine out of ten good things... and we spent our time thinking about the one bad thing and trying to prevent it.

- Eusebius, the church historian, tells us that Peter and his wife were imprisoned under Nero in AD 61. One morning Peter went to the place of execution with his wife and witnessed his wife's crucifixion. She was killed before his eyes. He stood before her and said, "Remember our Lord." He was taken back to his own dungeon, stayed there overnight, and his submissive spirit led the jailer to trust in Christ. Just before Peter died, he stood before the cross and said that he was not worthy to die the way his Lord died. He asked to be crucified feet up...hands down...upside down. He was led where he did not want to go, but he submitted to it.

- Note John 21:19 He would glorify God in his death. He would honor God in his death and honor God in his death.
- When some people criticized Methodist teachings and practices, John Wesley said, "Certainly our people die well."
- It is important that we not only live well, but also die well. Without grumbling or complaining, but quietly enjoying the inner peace that only Christ gives. We can glorify God in death by witnessing to others of the comfort and support we find in God's grace.
-Psalms 23:4

II. Peter's rebuke of the Lord John 21:20-23

-Peter was bad at taking his eyes off Jesus.
A Matt. 14:30 Peter averted his eyes from Jesus because of a crisis.
As he walked toward Jesus on the water, he was frightened by the waves and the wind.
B. John 18 Peter averted his eyes from Jesus because of the circumstances.
As he stood by the fire of the enemy at Jesus' trial, he was afraid to take a stand for Christ.
C. John 21:21 Peter takes his eyes off Jesus because of another Christian.

-Lord, what about my brother? Peter may have been a little jealous of John's special closeness to Jesus. That was perhaps why he asked about John's future.
-Jesus said, "Peter mind your own business. Don't worry about what others are doing. Just be true to what God wants of you in your life.”

- It is amazing to imagine how effective the church would become if we all followed the word Jesus gave to Peter: Don't mind your brother's business. Just follow me."
-Here begins many problems in a church...and here begins much competition and rivalry between brothers and sisters in Christ.
-I Tim. 5:13 A busybody is one who is occupied with all matters except his own. They go from house to house...on the phone these days...and spend hours catching up on everyone's affairs when it's none of their business.
-Jesus said, "Peter, mind your own business."

-When we start trying to take care of everyone else's business, it always causes problems.

"Trouble in the Carpentry"

There was trouble in the carpentry shop and the tools quarreled.
One of them said: "The hammer is to blame. It's way too loud."
"Nonsense," protested the hammer, "I think it's the saw's fault.
He goes back and forth all the time.”
The saw called out, "It's not my fault. I think the plane is to blame. It's his work too
shallow; he does nothing but scratch the surface.”
The plane objected loudly, "I think the real problem is with the screwdriver, which keeps going in circles."
That's ridiculous," said the screwdriver, "all the trouble started with the ruler,
because he always measures other people by his own standards.”
The ruler was angry. "Then what about the sandpaper? Certainly he always rubs people in the wrong direction.”
"Why pick on me?" said the sandpaper, "I think you should blame the drill for being so boring."

Just as the driller was about to protest, the carpenter walked in and began to work. With each of these tools he eventually built a beautiful pulpit from which the gospel of peace was eventually preached to thousands of people.

“Peter, don't worry about what I have to do for someone else. And don't worry that they don't do it the way you would. Follow me!"

II. Peter's answer to the Lord

At the end of the Gospel of John we see a resurrected Savior commanding a redeemed soul to follow him. The next book of the Bible tells us how faithfully Peter followed Christ. He became the preacher at Pentecost, a leader in the early church, a man who never returned, a man who loved and served his Savior to the end. Then came the day when Jesus' predictions came true. Peter was bound and cruelly killed by an enemy of Christ.

But when he suffered the last excruciating pain and shed the last drop of blood and breathed his last, was it death? No, it was life, eternal life. Glorious life, eternal life in heaven with Jesus. No more hassle and hassle. No more sweat and tears. No more chains in prisons. no more sadness No more disappointment. Instead, the face of Jesus. I wonder what Jesus said when they met. I wonder what Peter said. I can imagine Jesus saying, “It's all over now, Peter. You were true to your faith. You did well. you are home now Just rest and enjoy.” And I can imagine Peter saying, “Lord, it's worth all the effort and persecution to see you again and to hear your voice. Thank you for saving me and forgiving me of all my sins and bringing me home to heaven. I will spend all of eternity thanking you for what you have done for me.”

Peter lived his life for Christ and then gave his life for Him. When he finally got home to heaven he had thousands of trophies to lay at his feet. I hope that when you and I are freed from the bondage of this earth, we will also have some trophies to place at Jesus' feet.

(Video) Deadly punch caught on video outside Ybor City bar

It will all be worth it when we see Jesus.


What is the moral lesson of Mark 10 35 45? ›

Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all. For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

What is preaching on mathew 5 1 12? ›

Those that are in Christ rest in the grace, mercy, power, and promises of their Savior. They know that he will not fail or falter. Jesus's words in Matthew 5:1–12 are meant to remind Christians that their hope isn't in themselves but in what their great God has done and will do.

What is the golden rule in Matthew 7 12? ›

Golden Rule, precept in the Gospel of Matthew (7:12): “In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you. . . .” This rule of conduct is a summary of the Christian's duty to his neighbour and states a fundamental ethical principle.

Did James and John ask to sit at Jesus right hand? ›

James and John approached Jesus and said, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” Jesus explained to them that they did not know or understand what they were asking.

What is the short reflection on Mark 10 35 45? ›

Important Message of the Gospel

The gospel from Mark 10:35-45 reminds us that we all have our desires for recognition and rewards. These are all things from the world which we can't bring to heaven. We need to remind ourselves that Jesus died for our sins, He comes to us to serve.

What is the unforgiving servant my own understanding? ›

Jesus taught that God is willing to let us off a debt we cannot repay, so we should be ready to forgive others. The servant who did not forgive was tortured. Perhaps Jesus is referring to the way a person feels when they cannot forgive. They remain bitter and resentful and end up suffering the most.

What is Jesus main point in Matthew 5 1 11? ›

Jesus is saying that those who are poor in spirit are fortunate! It may surprise us that he speaks these words about those whose present circumstances seem so unfortunate.

What is the sermon on 1 Kings 17 8? ›

In 17:8-16, God commands Elijah to go to Zarephath, where a widow (who replaces the ravens) is commanded to feed him. Upon his arrival, Elijah discovers that the widow is an unlikely source of hospitality. In fact, she is so short on food that she is preparing for her own death (1 Kings 17:12).

What is the sermon on Mathew 5 3 12? ›

Jesus explains: People who are poor in spirit have, contrary to appearances, discovered that they're spiritually needy. The good news is that God loves to give grace to those who realize they're spiritually needy. The kingdom of God belongs to people who realize their need of God's grace.

What is the most powerful Bible verse? ›

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths".

What is the golden rule in Matthew 7 13? ›

"So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (v.

What is the golden rule in Matthew 8 12? ›

The "Golden Rule" was proclaimed by Jesus of Nazareth during his Sermon on the Mount and described by him as the second great commandment. The common English phrasing is "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you".

Can my sons sit on your left and right? ›

Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him. "What is it you want?" he asked. She said, "Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom."

Who sits on the left side of Jesus? ›

Crucifixion by Hans von Tübingen showing Saint Dismas the Good Thief on Christ's right (the left of the picture), and Gestas the Impenitent Thief on Christ's left with a devil. Depictions of the crucifixion of Jesus often show Jesus' head inclined to his right, showing his acceptance of the Good Thief.

Which John was at the foot of the cross? ›

3) The youngest eyewitness mentioned in this text, according to tradition, is St. John. As a young man, he takes risks courageously. He follows Jesus to the end, that is, to the foot of the Cross.

What is the moral lesson of Mark 10 2 16? ›

Amen, I say to you, whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.” Then he embraced them and blessed them, placing his hands on them. In this gospel, Jesus is reminding us this commandment, “That thou shalt not commit adultery.” God made male and female for each other.

What does Mark 10 38 mean? ›

Mark 10:38–39 is about discipleship as self-denying, as self-risking and as service for the redemption of the world. There are two ideas in the text, lordship and service. Seeley says “the two stand in sharp contrast to one another. The tension between the lordship and service gives the passage much of its force.

What is the lesson in Mark 10 17 30? ›

Gospel: Mark 10:17-31

No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: 'You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not defraud; honor your father and your mother.

What are two lesson learned in the unforgiving servant? ›

Jesus taught that it is not possible to love God (who we cannot see) if we cannot love each other. Love of God and a desire to draw closer to him encourage a forgiving heart, and it is through his love that people can express love and forgiveness to others.

Why did Jesus say 70 times 7? ›

Jesus speaks of forgiveness beyond what anyone had ever considered before: seventy times seven! Many commentaries understand this to mean that Jesus was telling Peter that he should forgive his brother a limitless number of times.

What is the meaning of the weak can never forgive? ›

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi. There are occasions when people go through injustice, get setbacks in life, get betrayed by someone they trust. Do not get the response they expect from someone – someone very close, when in need.

What does Raca mean in the Bible? ›

(ˈrɑːkə ) adjective. a biblical word meaning ' worthless' or ' empty' Word origin. from Aramaic.

What is the moral lesson of Matthew 5? ›

Matt. 5:5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are the meek, This is the same Old Testament theme. The meek refers to those who do not throw their weight, about but rely on God to give them their due.

What is the main lesson of Matthew 5? ›

To be poor in spirit means to be humble and “to recognize gratefully [our] dependence on the Lord—to understand that [we] have constant need for His support. Humility is an acknowledgment that [our] talents and abilities are gifts from God” (True to the Faith: A Gospel Reference [2004], 86).

What is the moral lesson of 1 Kings 17? ›

Faith, to be faith, must center around something that is not known. Faith, to be faith, must go beyond that for which there is confirming evidence. Faith, to be faith, must go into the unknown. Faith, to be faith, must walk to the edge of the light, and then a few steps into the darkness.

What is the moral lesson of 1 Kings 18? ›

The Lord allows us to choose whether we will follow Him or the false gods and unrighteous ways of the world. The Lord's power is greater than the power of men. The Lord can help us know that He is the true God. The Lord often speaks to us through the still, small voice of the Spirit.

What is the message of 2 Kings 6 8 17? ›

Don't be afraid. Simply put: Trust in the peace and protection he promises through his Holy Spirit and his assurance to be with us in every situation – even situations like danger, temptation, or the brink of death. But when those dark days come, we rarely find it easy to trust in our God's promised protection.

What is the sermon in eph 5 18 20? ›

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews.

What does Matthew 5 13 16 mean? ›

Jesus used the image of salt to describe the transforming effect of God's work in our lives – and how the. Holy Spirit wants to work through us to bring the power and blessing of God's kingdom to others.

What is the sermon on LK 21 5 11? ›

Gospel: Luke 21:5-11

He answered, “See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, 'I am he,' and 'The time has come. ' Do not follow them! When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not immediately be the end.”

What are the 3 powerful prayers? ›

The prayer of protection. The prayer of transformation. The prayer of restoration.

What is Jesus most famous quote? ›

1. “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

What is the happiest verse in the Bible? ›

Philippians 4:4

“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” The Good News: The only source of true happiness is the Lord. All of the things you receive in your life that give you happiness are because you believe in God.

What is the golden rule quote? ›

It goes something like this: 'Do unto others twenty-five percent better than you expect them to do unto you.

What is the golden rule example? ›

Examples of the golden rule

For example: If you want people to be polite to you, then you should be polite to them. (positive form) If you don't want people to be rude to you, then you shouldn't be rude to them.

How do we obey the golden rule? ›

He wants us to obey by first trusting all our needs to our Father in earnest prayer — resting in the fact that He is rejoicing to do us good with all His heart and soul. Then — trusting that God is passionately pursuing us with good — we can devote ourselves to doing good for others.

What is Ephesians 4 32? ›

One example comes from Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God has forgiven you.” In this sentence, Paul has summarized the biblical message: that we are to be kind, compassionate and forgiving. In other places, the gospel is summarized in other ways.

What does Matthew 7:12 14 mean? ›

Both gates claim to be the way to God. The wide gate is not marked, “This way to Hell.” It is labelled “Heaven,” the same as the narrow gate. But it does not lead there. Satan is a master of religious deception. He constructs his gate so that it will look like the door to heaven.

What is the object lesson of Matthew 7:12? ›

The Golden Rule says to treat others the way you want to be treated (Matthew 7:12). It's pretty simple. If you want to survive and win at being a kid, treat others right. Treat them the way you want to be treated.

What is the right hand side of the father? ›

The “right hand” is seen as a place of honor and status throughout the biblical text. When the Bible makes statements that Jesus Christ sits at the right hand of the Father, it is affirming that he has equal status to the Father within the Godhead (Hebrews 1:3, 12:2; 1 Peter 3:22; Acts 7:55-56).

Who sat on the right side of Jesus? ›

James the Great, whose mouth is opened in astonishment, is sitting on the right next to Jesus, and spreading out his arms as if trying to say to the two disciples behind him, who are attempting to command the attention of Jesus with their eloquent gestures and the way they are pushing forward, that they should be quiet ...

Was Jesus pierced on his right or left side? ›

Although the Gospels do not specify on which side he was wounded, it was conventionally shown in art as being on Jesus's proper right side, though some depictions, notably a number by Rubens, show it on the proper left.

Does Jesus have a sibling? ›

The brothers of Jesus or the adelphoi (Greek: ἀδελφοί, translit. adelphoí, lit. "of the same womb") are named in the New Testament as James, Joses (a form of Joseph), Simon, Jude, and unnamed sisters are mentioned in Mark and Matthew.

What is the meaning of INRI in Jesus cross? ›

INRI is generally thought of to refer to “Iesus Nazarenus, Rex Iudaeorum,” meaning “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews,” but apparently there's more.

Who was the only disciple not to be martyred? ›

The writer of the the Gospel of John, the book of the Revelation and three epistles bearing his name, John is the only one of the 12 that history says was not put to death for his faith, although he suffered greatly because of Jesus throughout his long life.

What is the third word on the cross? ›

3rd Word From the Cross: 'Behold Your Son; Behold Your Mother'| National Catholic Register.

What is the moral lesson on Jesus the living bread and water? ›

Knowing that Jesus Christ is the Bread of Life—the way by which all can receive eternal life—we have an important responsibility. We should seek to help people come to Him and partake of His word, like the people who were filled with the loaves and fishes.

What do we learn from the story of the centurion servant? ›

We should stop claiming how we are better than the rest. We should use our words to build and encourage each other. We should speak from humility not from pride. The Centurion used his position of authority to express his belief that Jesus did not have to go to his house to heal the servant.

What is the lesson from the Samaritan Leper? ›

People will ask about when to expect the kingdom, only to be told it is in their midst. The Samaritan leper recognized the emerging kingdom in Jesus, and everything else was secondary, even his own leprosy. His faith, obvious in his actions, made him whole. The other nine ceased to be lepers.

What lesson do we learn from the healing of the ten lepers? ›

Jesus and the Ten Lepers

Yet somehow the message of gratitude—or, rather, human ingratitude—escaped me until Pastor Joel hit me over the head with it Sunday. The story appears in Luke 17. The most powerful takeaway for me is the idea that humans struggle mightily with gratitude.

What does the rivers of living water mean? ›

“Rivers of living water” represent the Holy Spirit's presence and power poured out on Jesus' followers. The Spirit's presence points to his cleansing and sanctifying work in the hearts of God's children.

What does the miracle of the loaves and fishes teach us? ›

This story is popular for children as it teaches the importance of sharing, making the most of what you have, and that Christians must place their trust in God. This being in line with the teachings of Jesus Christ within the Christian religion.

What is the deeper meaning of give us this day our daily bread? ›

Asking God for our daily bread, rather than our weekly, monthly, or yearly bread, is also a way to focus us on the smaller, more manageable bits of a problem. To deal with something very big, we may need to work at it in small, daily bites.

What does it mean when Jesus heals the centurion's servant? ›

Gnostic interpretation

According to this interpretation, the demiurge tells Jesus that he has tried all he could to save the servant (humanity) but his laws have not succeeded in healing humanity or offering it a proper means towards spiritual development.

Why was Jesus amazed at the centurion? ›

It astonished Jesus that, in spite of all the miracles, his townsfolk could see no further than the boy they had grown up with. It equally astonished Him that this centurion, entirely foreign to Israel and the covenant promises of God, could so easily grasp hold of who Jesus was in relation to his Father.

Why was the centurion so good? ›

It was a very popular tank with good armour, mobility, and a powerful main armament. Development of the Centurion began in 1943 with manufacture beginning in January 1945. Six prototypes arrived in Belgium less than a month after the war in Europe ended in May 1945.


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