18
Jul
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 2:4 THOSE THAT DON’T KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS DO NOT KNOW HIM

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1John 2:4 He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

 In 1 John 2:4, John was speaking to believers about the Gnostics who said they had a relationship with Jesus, but they really did not.  This seems to be the way of society today, because many live ungodly lives and yet they think they are going to heaven, or they live like the Pharisees, who look good to people because they pretend to be holy, but are really hypocrites who have never asked God to forgive them on the basis of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection.  Where do you fit, is this you, or have you truly been forgiven because you cried out to Jesus to save you because you are a sinner?

11
Jul
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 2.3 THOSE THAT KNOW CHRIST KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS

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1 John 2:3 says Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.  This is what Jesus meant when He said in John 14:15 "If you love Me, keep My commandments.  He also said in John 10:27 "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.  This means that if we are truly saved we will be holy, as He is holy.  We will be doing our best through the power of the Holy Spirit to live our life to model that of Jesus Christ’s.  That doesn’t mean we are perfect, but if this is not what you desire and are trying to do, you cannot truly be saved.

13
Jun
2018

JOHN 3:19-21 AND THIS IS THE CONDEMNATION, THAT THE LIGHT HAS COME INTO THE WORLD

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John 3:19 "And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 "For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 "But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

 In this section of scripture we will see that Jesus (the Light) has come into the world, but men love their evil deeds more than they love goodness, righteousness, holiness, and truth, in other words all that Jesus is and forever will be because He is God in human flesh.  We do our evil in the darkness because we do not want to be seen, but those that are truly born again, do not mind being transparent to others because we have nothing to hide.

6
Jun
2018

JOHN 3:10-18 WHOEVER BELIEVES IN JESUS SHOULD NOT PERISH BUT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE PART 2

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John 3:17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

 John 3:16 -17 says for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  Did you hear that.  Jesus did not come to condemn you, but to save you through His death on the cross.  So what would you say if God asked you why should I let you into my Heaven.  Will it be I am trusting in Jesus Christ and Him alone for salvation.

30
May
2018

JOHN 3:10-16 WHOEVER BELIEVES IN JESUS SHOULD NOT PERISH BUT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE

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John 3:10 Jesus answered and said to him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? 11 "Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. 12 "If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13 "No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. 14 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 "that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

 In these verses Jesus is going to get down to the heart of the matter.  Nicodemus is THE teacher of Israel and does not understand that he needs to be saved, how then can He speak of the greater things of Heaven.  Jesus will explain to Nicodemus how the serpent in the wilderness was a picture of Christ and His crucifixion.  He will also give us the most famous verse of all in 3:16 that tells us of God’s great love for us and how anyone who calls on Him for forgiveness of sins can be saved, if they would just be willing to believe and trust in Christ and Him alone.

Joh 3:13 "No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. ? how is he in heaven if he is with Nicodemus, what does son of man mean, why use it

It is the work of God’s Spirit, who sovereignly brings about new life (verses 7-8), and it is a work that comes “from above” (verses 13-15). Does Nicodemus believe in a heavenly kingdom? He certainly should, as did the Old Testament men and women of faith (see Hebrews 11:13-16). If anyone could ascend into heaven, they must first come down from heaven. It is a round trip, with heaven as the point of origin. Only the Son of Man can return to heaven, because this is where He came from (verse 13). This is why salvation is “from above.”

  1. The Necessities of the New birth
  1. Christ had to die

14 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, serpent was lifted up, Jesus will be Numbers 21

The term “lifted up” has a double meaning. It can mean, literally, “lifted up,” but it also has the sense of exalting (see, for example, Matthew 11:23; 23:12; Acts 2:33). Our Lord was literally “lifted up” on a cross, but in the same breath we must also say He was “exalted” by being “lifted up” in this manner. His death on the cross also necessitated His being “lifted up” by His resurrection and ascension.

The story of the bronze serpent, recorded in Numbers 21, foreshadows the salvation which God will provide through the “Son of Man.” The Israelites had been complaining against God, grumbling about the journey and their apparent lack of food and water. They did not like the manna God gave them day after day. And so God sent fiery serpents among them, and many of those who were bitten died. God provided a salvation for this disobedient people, so that they might survive divine judgment. He instructed Moses to make a bronze serpent and to set it on a pole, so that anyone who was bitten by one of the serpents could merely look up at the serpent and be healed. This is precisely what happened. All who were bitten and looked up were healed.

This Old Testament provision for Israel’s healing is illustrative of the salvation God is about to accomplish through His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. As the serpent was lifted up, and thus became a source of salvation, so the Son of Man must be “lifted up,” so that those who look up to Him in faith can be saved from God’s wrath as well. The snake-bitten Israelites were smitten of God for their sin. They deserved to die, and apart from His provision of the serpent, they would have. Those who did not look up to the bronze serpent died. The act of merely looking up to the bronze serpent was an act of faith. So far as the people could see, there was no direct link between the snake bite they had received and the healing for which they hoped. But it was the means God provided for their salvation. It was the means God declared through Moses. It was the one way God said His people could be saved. Those who looked to the bronze serpent were saved from the death they deserved.

In verses 14 and 15, Jesus connects the serpent, which is lifted up on a pole, with His own death at Calvary, when He is lifted up on the cross. Nicodemus asks how a man can be reborn from above.

  1. Necessary for the sinner to believe

 15 "that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. Conditional Clause that. Believes and eternal life are in present tense, should not perish is future

Jesus first tells him by analogy; now He tells him more directly. If anyone is to be saved from the penalty of their sins, they must “look up” to Him for salvation. He, like the bronze serpent of old, will be “lifted up” on a cross, and He will later be “lifted up” in His resurrection and ascension. In so doing, He will be “lifted up” in another way—He will be exalted by God for His sacrificial obedience at Calvary. All those who “look up” to Him in faith, trusting in Him to remove the judgment for their sin, like the Israelites of old, will be saved.

Lessons

  • Who or what are you looking to for your salvation?
  • Who are you pointing people to?

 

23
May
2018

JOHN 3:3-12 JESUS EXPLAINS ABOUT THE WATER AND THE SPIRIT

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John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." 4 Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?" 5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 "Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.' 8 "The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit." 9 Nicodemus answered and said to Him, "How can these things be?" 10 Jesus answered and said to him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? 11 "Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. 12 "If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

 Today we will go back a few verses to get the context of this section.  We will see Jesus speaking to Nicodemus about his eternal destiny.  The Pharisee’s were literalists, in other words they took everything too exact. When the Bible said to keep the Word before them always, they put little boxes with scripture in them and tied them to their head.  Nicodemus seems to be doing this, but as we get down to the end of this section we will see the real problem.  Jesus says how can you receive heavenly things if you will not believe the earthly things I tell you (cf: verse 12).  It all really comes down to disbelief and what we really want to believe or not believe.  Nicodemus will not believe, so he cannot receive eternal life.

It is a spiritual Birth

 7 "Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.' Moves to first person

It is a mysterious birth

Verse 8 what does it mean Joh 3:8 "The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit, Play on words, wind pneuma, Spirit, pneuma?  Why use the wind as an analogy to the Spirit? How does hearing the wind and not knowing where it goes relate to. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit

Ezekiel 37 talks about the wind and spirit

It should be pointed out that the same Greek word (pneuma) is rendered both “wind” (John 3:8) and “spirit” (John 1:32-33; 3:5, 6, 8, 34) in the New Testament. In John 3:8, the term occurs twice; the first time it is rendered “wind,” the second time “Spirit.”

Jesus likens the saving work of God through His Spirit to the working of the wind. The effects of the wind can be seen, but the wind itself is not seen. Neither can the wind be controlled. The wind goes where it wishes and does what it will. Men do not control the wind. The Spirit’s saving work is like this. The Spirit goes about His life-giving work, and no man controls Him.  No one, by his own works, or striving, or manipulation can direct the Spirit in His work. But when the Spirit brings about the new birth, the effects are evident. We know it is the work of God’s Spirit, unseen and beyond man’s control. In this sense, neither Nicodemus nor anyone else can save themselves, nor anyone else for that matter. Salvation is the sovereign work of God, accomplished by the Holy Spirit.

Joh 3:9 Nicodemus answered and said to Him, "How can these things be?" what things

In verses 4 and 9, Nicodemus asks two different questions, but both begin the same, “How is it possible …?”  He is so dumb-struck by what Jesus has told him that he cannot conceive of how our Lord’s words could be true. Nicodemus is so much a part of the natural world that he cannot fathom the possibility of anything spiritual and supernatural. In theory, the Pharisees believed in the miraculous (see Acts 23:6-8), but in practice Nicodemus appears to be anti-supernatural. Let’s face it, we do the same thing. We claim to believe God is in control, and that He is all-powerful, yet we often fail to live like it is true.

Teaching the Teacher of Israel About Spiritual Things (3:10-15)

 10 Jesus answered and said to him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? Know what, how to be saved, about the spirit?

Our Lord’s words are a gentle rebuke: “Can you really be the teacher in Israel and not grasp these things?” Nicodemus is not only a Pharisee and a member of the Sanhedrin, he is “the teacher of Israel” (verse 10). It is generally understood that the definite article here indicates that Nicodemus was the most prominent and respected teacher of his day. How could a renowned teacher of the Old Testament not know what Jesus is talking about? It seems incredible; indeed, it is. Notice the words of verse 12 in this regard. Jesus contrasts “earthly things” with “heavenly things.” He seems to place the things of which He has been speaking in the category of “earthly things.” “Heavenly things” would thus refer to those things associated with the coming kingdom of God, things presently beyond our comprehension. 

      How can Nicodemus, a teacher of the Old Testament law, not grasp those things the law teaches? The problem with mankind has always been with the heart (Genesis 8:21; Exodus 7:14; Deuteronomy 5:28-29; 8:14; Isaiah 29:13; Jeremiah 17:9), a problem which God alone can solve by giving men a new heart (Deuteronomy 30:6; Jeremiah 31:31-34). To be reborn by the Spirit of God makes one a new man (see 1 Samuel 10:6-13), and it is the Spirit who enables men to see such truths (see 1 Corinthians 2).

Paul carries this even a step further:

12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we behave with great boldness, 13 and not like Moses who used to put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from staring at the end of the glory that was fading away. 14 But their minds were closed. For to this very day, the same veil remains when they hear the old covenant read. It has not been removed because only in Christ is it taken away. 15 But until this very day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their minds; 16 but whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is present, there is freedom. 18 And we all, with unveiled faces reflecting the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another, which is from the Lord, who is the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:12-18).

It is a real birth

 11 "Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen (what is meaning of), and you do not receive Our witness. We and Our in Caps

 John 3:11 "Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. We’s, why, then verse 12 goes back to If I have told you, singular in verses 3,5,7,beginning of 11,12

We speak about what we know and testify about what we have seen.” He then goes on to say, “… but you people do not accept our testimony.” The “you” is plural

Who is the “we” Jesus is speaking of, and who is the “you people”? The “we” seems to be John the Baptist and Jesus, both of whom have testified to what they have seen. The “we” might conceivably include the Old Testament prophets, though this is less likely. The “you people” is Nicodemus and his fellow-Pharisees.

      John bore witness to the coming of Messiah. The Pharisees sent a delegation to inquire of John just who he was and what his message might be (John 1:19-25). They obviously did not accept John’s testimony because they refused to be baptized by him (Luke 7:29-30). The Pharisees also assembled in large numbers, coming from all over the land of Israel to hear Jesus and to judge His message and ministry (Luke 5:17). They certainly did not submit to Jesus as their Messiah. Thus, the witness of both John and Jesus was rejected by the Pharisees.

Joh 3:12 "If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? What does earthly things refer to, what earthly things did he tell him? Why does He say he does not believe?

Notice the words of verse 12 in this regard. Jesus contrasts “earthly things” with “heavenly things.” He seems to place the things of which He has been speaking in the category of “earthly things.” “Heavenly things” would thus refer to those things associated with the coming kingdom of God, things presently beyond our comprehension. 

He has borne witness to ‘earthly things’ without being believed. The simplest way of understanding this is to see a reference to the present discourse. It was taking place on earth and concerned a process with effects discernible on earth. In contrast with this, Jesus can impart ‘heavenly things,’ i.e. higher teaching. But if men like Nicodemus will not believe the simpler things they cannot be expected to believe what is more advanced.” Morris, p. 222

Joh 3:13 "No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. ? How is he in heaven if he is with Nicodemus, what does son of man mean, why use it

It is the work of God’s Spirit, who sovereignly brings about new life (verses 7-8), and it is a work that comes “from above” (verses 13-15). Does Nicodemus believe in a heavenly kingdom? He certainly should, as did the Old Testament men and women of faith (see Hebrews 11:13-16). If anyone could ascend into heaven, they must first come down from heaven. It is a round trip, with heaven as the point of origin. Only the Son of Man can return to heaven, because this is where He came from (verse 13). This is why salvation is “from above.”

In this week’s message we want to ask you as Jesus asked Nicodemus are you willing to be saved?

16
May
2018

JOHN 3:1-6 NICODEMUS IS TOLD BY JESUS, YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN

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John 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." 3 Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." 4 Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?" 5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

 In this powerful section of Scripture we will hear Nicodemus ask a question and Jesus will get to the heart of the matter of what is really needed by answering a question that was not asked.  We will also see what it really means to be born again; does it take baptism as some say (referring to the comment about being born of the water), communion, good works, keeping the commandments, joining a church?  No, so just how does one become born again?  Take a listen and you will find out what Jesus who is God in human flesh has to say.  For He is the one who really knows, since He is the one who created every single thing that has ever been created.

 The need for the new birth

John 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. Because he was a Pharisee? Did that make him a ruler…A member of the Sanhedrin?

By his words, we can see that Nicodemus has a great respect for Jesus. Nicodemus calls Jesus “Rabbi.” No doubt this is the same title many used to address him, for he was a teacher of the law as well. He further refers to Jesus as “a teacher come from God.”

verse 2, This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know (why we know) that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." why did he come by night? What does God is with him mean to a Pharisee? Didn’t really ask a question, made a statement

Has Nicodemus come as the official spokesman for the Pharisees? It is certainly possible, but it just does not seem to be the Pharisees’ style to act in such a secretive manner. In the cases above (John 1:19-25; Luke 5:17), the Pharisees make their moves very publicly, almost as though they intend to be seen. They wanted to be viewed as the accrediting agency for all those who taught the law.

I am inclined to think that Nicodemus is acting independently, without the sanction of the Pharisees. Why “we” then? Because Nicodemus is still a Pharisee, a member (and even a leader) of their organization. He thinks in terms of this system; his observations and preliminary conclusions are drawn as a Pharisee. When Nicodemus says “we,” this should suggest to us that at this point in his life, Nicodemus is still 100% Pharisee. Not until Nicodemus recognizes the failure of Pharisaism and renounces his faith in this religious system will he cast himself on Jesus alone for salvation. This is precisely what our Lord’s response is all about. Jesus seeks to show Nicodemus that his system of religion does not, and cannot, save anyone.

The “we” could also include the Jews more generally.

      Before we move to our Lord’s response, we should observe that Nicodemus is partly correct in his assessment of Jesus. Jesus is a “teacher come from God,” and God is “with Him” (verse 2). What Nicodemus does not know is that his words are even truer than he realizes. Jesus is literally a “teacher come from God.” He has come down to earth from the Father. And God is “with Him.” But Jesus is much greater than Nicodemus ever imagined at this moment in time. He is God, and He manifests the power of God in His teaching and working of signs. It will be some time yet before Nicodemus realizes the full truth of what he has just said. What he hears next catches him completely off guard.

The conversation which Nicodemus initiates, let us remember that Jesus is the focus. Nicodemus has not come to talk about himself or about Pharisaism. He has come to find out about Jesus, His message, and His relationship to God. What does Jesus have to say for Himself? Nicodemus opens the door by assuring Jesus that he sees Him as a man with a mission and a message from God. It is a perfect opener for Jesus. All He has to do is pick up from here and tell Nicodemus what His mission is. It doesn’t turn out at all as Nicodemus may have expected.

Our Lord’s words will stun Nicodemus. He begins by indicating to Nicodemus that the words He is about to speak convey a most solemn truth. He uses an expression unique to this Gospel, which in the King James Version is rendered, “Verily, verily …” Leon Morris sums up the impact of our Lord’s few words:

Then in one sentence He sweeps away all that Nicodemus stood for, and demands that he be re-made by the power of God.

Nicodemus’ brand of Judaism did not know anything of re-birth.  Quite frankly, the Pharisees thought one birth of the “right kind” was quite enough.

Matthew 3:7-10 7 But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Offspring of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? 8 Produce fruit worthy of repentance! 9 And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father,’ because I tell you that God can raise up children for Abraham from these stones! 10 Even now the ax is ready at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire”

Vs 2 signs you do, vs 3 I say to You

cannot Understand and see the things of God 1Co 2:14

V 3, Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he (why not You are uses third person) cannot see the kingdom of God." what does it mean he cannot see the kingdom? What is the kingdom?

Too many Jews, to be born a Jew was to be born into the kingdom of God. We know the Jews also believed that Gentiles are born “lost.” Even the Jerusalem church leaders had to be forcefully convinced that God had purposed the salvation of Gentiles (see Acts 10; 11:15-18), and even then, the practice of many Jewish believers did not match their profession (see Acts 11:19). Paul, likewise, hit hard at this point. All Israelites are not true Israelites (Romans 9:6). Those who trust in the atoning work of Jesus Christ for salvation are true Israelites, whether their racial origins are Jewish or Gentile (see Galatians 3:28; 6:16).

Imagine the shocked look on the face of Nicodemus when Jesus tells him that his natural birth (as a Jew) will not save him, and that he must be reborn from above. The implication is clear: Unless Nicodemus is reborn from above, he will not see the kingdom of God. Here is a man who thinks he has reserved seats on the 50 yard line of heaven. Jesus tells him that he is not even going to get into heaven as he is. He first must be born again, from above.

He cannot dunamai <dunamai> ou <ou> see eidw <eido> the kingdom basileia <basileia> of God. yeov <theos>

Verse 4 Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?"  Takes things too literally because he is a Pharisee?  Phylacteries, etc.

Nicodemus chooses to understand Jesus’ words literally, so that he assumes the expression “reborn from above” must refer to some kind of literal re-birth.

  1. The Nature of the New Birth or What It Means to Be Reborn From Above (3:5-8)

Verse 5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one (why not You are uses third person) is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. What does it mean born of the water and spirit Joh 1:13; Ga 6:15; Tit 3:5; Jas 1:18; 1Pe 1:23; 1Jo 3:9

The support for interpreting “water” in this way is less than compelling. Neither do I find it necessary for Jesus to argue the need for both physical birth and spiritual birth.

I am inclined to understand the terms “water” and “spirit” as one expression, “water and spirit,” which together refer to spiritual rebirth. There are several Old Testament texts which seem to justify the conclusion that both “water” and “spirit” refer to one’s spiritual rebirth:

3 “’For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring; 4 They will spring up among the grass Like willows by the watercourses.’ 5 One will say, ‘I am the LORD’s’; Another will call himself by the name of Jacob; Another will write with his hand, ‘The LORD’s,’ And name himself by the name of Israel” (Isaiah 44:3-5, NKJV).

24 “For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. 25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them” (Ezekiel 36:24-27, NKJV).

This work of regeneration, is also described in the Old Testament as the work of the “wind”:

9 Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” 10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army (Ezekiel 37:9-10, NKJV).

The New Testament describes God’s work of salvation as the “washing of the new birth and the renewing of the Holy Spirit”:

3 For we too were once foolish, disobedient, misled, enslaved to various passions and desires, spending our lives in evil and envy, hateful and hating one another. 4 But “when the kindness of God our Savior appeared and his love for mankind, 5 He saved us not by works of righteousness that we have done but on the basis of his mercy, through the washing of the new birth and the renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us in full measure through Jesus Christ our Savior. 7 And so, since we have been justified by his grace, we become heirs with the confident expectation of eternal life” (Titus 3:3-7).

James 1:21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.  22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does

John 3:6 "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Why capitalize the first Spirit, but not the second one

 

 

9
May
2018

JOHN 3 INTRO THE CONVERSATION OF NICODEMUS WITH JESUS

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John 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." 3 Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."

 In this section of scripture we will see Nicodemus the ruler of the Jews does not even know how to be saved and get to heaven.  The real point of this message is do you know how to be saved?  Today the Gospel has been so confused just as it was in Jesus day and people believe all kinds of things will get you into heaven, but Jesus said I Am the Way, The Truth, and The Life and no one gets to the Father, but by Me.  What are you trusting in to get you to heaven, good works or a relationship with Jesus and the Father?

Nicodemus is the “cream of the Jewish crop.” One dare not dream of having life any better than he has it. He is a Jew, a Pharisee, a member of the Sanhedrin (the highest legal, legislative and judicial body of the Jews), and a highly respected teacher of the Old Testament Scriptures. Can you imagine being Nicodemus and having Jesus tell you that all of this is not enough to get you into the kingdom of God? Yet this is precisely what Jesus tells Nicodemus. If a man like Nicodemus is not good enough for the kingdom of God, then who is? That is the question, and Jesus has the answer, which John records for us. Let us listen well to the inspired words of this Gospel to learn how one must enter the kingdom of God.

For the moment, suppose you are a renowned pianist, trained by the finest concert pianist the world has ever known. When you perform, crowds gather to listen. Everyone hails you as the master in your area of musical expertise. Now suppose some young man comes along who grew up in the Ozarks and who never had a piano lesson in his life, but simply taught himself to play on a broken-down instrument in his grandmother’s house. When this hillbilly musician comes to town, his talent is discovered, and people throng to hear him perform. When he does, tears come to the eyes of those in his audience. You too listen to him play. You, better than anyone else, recognize in him a musical genius that you have never had and that you never will. When you hear him play, you wish you had his abilities.

I believe this is the way Nicodemus must have felt about Jesus. Nicodemus is a Pharisee who is at the top of his field. Not only is he a member of the Sanhedrin, he is the most renowned Bible teacher of his day, of first century Jerusalem. Yet when he hears Jesus teach, he hears the answers to questions that have bothered him for years. He watches the crowds as they listen to Jesus, and he knows he has never held the attention of an audience like Jesus does. Jesus speaks in simple terms, but His message has great power. Nicodemus observes the miracles Jesus performs, knowing he has never performed so much as one miracle. By nearly any standard, Nicodemus does not hold a candle to Jesus.

3
May
2018

JOHN 2.23-25 THE CLEANSING OF THE TEMPLE BY JESUS PART 2

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John 2:23 Now when He was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in His name when they saw the signs which He did. 24 But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all men, 25 and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man.

 In the second part of Jesus Cleansing the Temple we will hear the third and last reason in this section that John will show us why Jesus is God.  This is the fact that He knows the heart of man and what is in it. Only God knows man and what he is and what he is truly capable of doing in his wickedness. Jeremiah 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it? 10 I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings.  Jesus will not commit to these people because he knows theirs is not a real belief in Him.  In the next section of scripture we will listen to the conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus and see how he is an example of chapter 2, verses 24 and 25.

25
Apr
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 2:2 THE PAYMENT FOR SIN

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1John 2:2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world

1 John 2:2 says He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.  This means Jesus Christ died on the cross so that anyone who believes He died in their place, took their hell, and paid the penalty for their sins can go to heaven.  The word propitiation means satisfaction and Jesus satisfied the legal demands that someone had to be punished and die for our sins.  That is why when Jesus died, He said it is finished, it means He paid our sin debt in full and anyone who will call on Him for forgiveness in repentance and faith will be saved.

 

22
Apr
2018

JOHN 2:11-22 THE CLEANSING OF THE TEMPLE BY JESUS

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John 2:12 After this He went down to Capernaum, He, His mother, His brothers, and His disciples; and they did not stay there many days. 13 Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the moneychangers doing business. 15 When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers' money and overturned the tables. 16 And He said to those who sold doves, "Take these things away! Do not make My Father's house a house of merchandise!" 17 Then His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for Your house has eaten Me up." 18 So the Jews answered and said to Him, "What sign do You show to us, since You do these things?" 19 Jesus answered and said to them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20 Then the Jews said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?" 21 But He was speaking of the temple of His body. 22 Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said.

                  In this weeks message we will see two of the three reasons in this section of Scripture why Jesus is God.  Remember John’s Gospel is proving to us that Jesus is God come in human flesh.  The first reason we will see is that Jesus had zeal for his fathers house and only He had the authority and right to regulate worship.  Secondly we will see that Jesus is God because only He can rise from the dead and live again forever.  This is a great section of scripture that starts the conflict with the religious authorities and will culminate with them killing him on the cross as the Bible predicted many hundreds of years ago.  The Pharisees as you will notice here and throughout the Gospels always want a sign from Him, but He never gives into their request, but always gives basically the same answer to them.

18
Apr
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 2:1 THE FREEDOM OF FORGIVENESS

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1 John 2:1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

                 The last part of 1John 2:1 says And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. If we are Christians we don’t look at salvation as a license to sin, but if we are truly saved, as we continue to follow Christ we will sin less and less as the pattern of our life.  But He also tells us that when we do sin that Jesus is our Advocate, our ally, our intercessor who defends us before an accusing devil and a Holy God that He paid for that sin on the cross and it can never be held against us ever again.

15
Apr
2018

JOHN 2:5-11 THE FIRST MIRACLE OF JESUS PART 2

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John 2:5 His mother said to the servants, "Whatever He says to you, do it."6 Now there were set there six waterpots of stone, according to the manner of purification of the Jews, containing twenty or thirty gallons apiece.7 Jesus said to them, "Fill the waterpots with water." And they filled them up to the brim.8 And He said to them, "Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast." And they took it.9 When the master of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom.10 And he said to him, "Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!"11 This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him.

 In this message we will finish the section of scripture we started last time.  We begin with a little refresher on what was said last time and then we begin to see how religion cannot save, only Christ.  We also see the role of Mary, she is not someone we pray to, but someone who needed a Savior just like we do.  We will also learn some more principles of how to live the Christian life in our daily walk with the Lord. Then finally we see the miracle itself and how Jesus is God because He is able to turn ordinary water into wine and He doesn’t need grapes or time to do it.  It is an instantaneous miracle done for a select few He chose to see it.

11
Apr
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL I JOHN 2:1 THE FREEDOM FROM SIN

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1 John 2:1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

            The first part of 1 John 2:1 says My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. This says that if we know Christ as our Lord and Savior then we do not have to sin because God has given us the Holy Spirit to overcome sin, suffering, and temptation, but we sin because we are weak and want to.  If you have not been saved, you are like Mic Jagger who says he is free, free to do whatever he wants.  But I say to you and anyone else who believes this, you are not free to not do what you want to do and no matter how hard you try you will never be able to change or break those bad habits without Christ and you definitely will not make it heaven

8
Apr
2018

JOHN 2:1-5 THE FIRST MIRACLE OF JESUS

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John 2:1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2 Now both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. 3 And when they ran out of wine, the mother of Jesus said to Him, "They have no wine." 4 Jesus said to her, "Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come."5 His mother said to the servants, "Whatever He says to you, do it."

In this great section of scripture we begin to see Jesus as He does His first miracle revealing yet another facet of who He is.  He is God over Nature and God over time. Only God can make wine out of water.  He is revealing more of who He is to His disciples, His mother, and the servants who see the miracle. Even though this is His first miracle, it is a private one for only a privileged few who get to witness it.  These verses reveal some principles we are to use as we seek to please Him and live our lifeJohn_2_1-5_mine-1.jpg as an obedient and productive Christian.

4
Apr
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:10 SAYS IF WE SAY WE HAVE NOT SINNED

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1 John 1:10 says If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.  Many people think they have never done anything wrong, or at least nothing that would send them to hell. James 4:17 says Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin. We live in a day of tolerance that defines sin, as what we think is right or wrong, but the Bible is our standard.  If we realize we are not good enough on our own to get into heaven we can trust Jesus Christ and God will save us. Otherwise we are calling God a liar and rejecting His Holy Word.

1
Apr
2018

JOHN 1:43-51 THE REVEALING OF JESUS TO PHILLIP AND NATHANIEL

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John 1:43 The following day Jesus wanted to go to Galilee, and He found Philip and said to him, "Follow Me." 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip found Nathanael and said to him, "We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and also the prophets, wrote--Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." 46 And Nathanael said to him, "Can anything good come out of Nazareth?" Philip said to him, "Come and see." 47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him, "Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!" 48 Nathanael said to Him, "How do You know me?" Jesus answered and said to him, "Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you." 49 Nathanael answered and said to Him, "Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!" 50 Jesus answered and said to him, "Because I said to you, 'I saw you under the fig tree,' do you believe? You will see greater things than these." 51 And He said to him, "Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man."(NKJV)

 In this section of Scripture Jesus actually goes out to find Phillip and when He does Phillip immediately goes to find his brother Nathaniel. Have you noticed that every time Jesus calls a disciple they immediately go and find someone else and bring them to Jesus? This is a great principle; we should all be bringing people to Jesus.  Nathaniel is a bit of a skeptic and takes some convincing. Jesus then begins to talk to Nathaniel and tell him all the things he was doing and thinking and Nathaniel is thoroughly convinced.  Jesus goes on to tell Nathaniel that the Son of Man is the only way to Heaven and the ladder that Jacob saw was actually a picture of Jesus.  This is a really great passage that begins to open up all the things about Jesus that we need to know and have you noticed all the names and titles that they have been given to Jesus beginning back in verse 29 of this Chapter.  There are about 16 of them, see if you can find them and see what they all mean.

 Following Jesus Means He leads you in a new direction v43-44

Initiative Evangelism - you take the initiative

The disciples of John were not the only men who began following Jesus. Andrew continued to bring other friends to Jesus. This incident preceded Jesus' formal appointment of the Twelve, but it shows Him preparing those who would become His disciples.

Everyone else in this chapter who came to Jesus came on the invitation of someone other than Jesus. Moreover John seems to have been stressing the importance of witnessing for Jesus. Andrew found Philip (a Greek name meaning "lover of horses") somewhere along the way or, most likely, in Galilee. Philip was from Bethsaida Julius in the region of Galilee (12:21). Having come to Jesus on Andrew's invitation, Philip accepted Jesus' invitation to follow Him. Verse 43, “The next day He purposed,” this is Jesus I believe.  Some think Andrew.  I think its Jesus.  “The next day He purposed to go to Galilee, and He found Philip, eureka.  Jesus said to him, ‘Follow Me.’” Philip is going one way, Jesus is going to pull  him another.  This one he sort of goes after, if you will.  Philips means a lover of horses.  That’s about all we know about Philip.  What is significant is that God meets Philip where he is.

 Now, you know, we, we say that axiom sometimes too much; God meets us where we are; and that can be inaccurate, can’t it.  But there’s a profound spiritual truth as well in that statement that God does meet us where we are.  One of the most profound passages in my spiritual journey has been Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  I hope you never get over that verse.  I hope you never tire of reviewing the fact that you and I were sinners in a sinful condition when we met Jesus Christ.  We did not have to get a little more good, a little bit better, clean up our lives, and then trust Christ.  He meets us while we are in our sinful condition.  So, in a sense, He does meet us where we are, doesn’t He?  And He meets Philip where he is.  Where are you?  Doesn’t matter ‘because that’s where He’ll meet you.

  1. Following Jesus Results in a new comprehension of who Jesus is v45-49

Apologetic Evangelism

 Philip then brought his friend Nathaniel (meaning "God has given" or "given of God," modern Theodore) to Jesus. Some commentators identify Nathanael with Bartholomew (cf. Matt. 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:14).

However there is no good reason to equate these two men. The witness continued to spread through the most normal lines of communication, namely, friend to friend, as it still does. The prophecies to which Philip referred may have included Deuteronomy 18:15-19; Isaiah 53; Daniel 7:13; Micah 5:2; and Zechariah 9:9. These and

others spoke of the Messiah. This suggests that the early disciples understood messiahship in the light of the Old Testament background rather than only in a political sense.98 Philip described Jesus as Joseph's son, which is how people knew Him before they learned that He was the Son of God (v. 49). "In one sense it is legitimate to view Jesus' disciples in the gospel of John (with the exception of Judas Iscariot) as believers in Him from near the beginning of His public ministry. In another sense, however, it is also clear that the disciples' faith in Jesus grew and developed as they observed the progress of His public ministry. The course of this development may be traced in the gospel of John."99

Ge 28:8-19 And he called the name of that place Bethel (House of God); but the name of that city had been Luz (Means Wilderness or Separation) previously.

V49 The fig tree is interesting.  It’s brimming with meaning.  Jesus saw him previously.  There are two things going on here.  One is historical and one is prophetic.  He saw him sitting under this fig true.  That’s the historical part.  But there’s a prophetic notion with it as well for in the Old Testament, if you were under any tree, you were meditating.  We might call it quiet time in our vernacular.  If a good Jew was under a tree, he was having a quiet time in our terminology.  So he saw Nathanael having this devotion under the tree. 

 Psalm 139 says, “God knows everything about you.”  It’s exciting and scary to read that Psalm.  He knows everything about you.  Every crevice in your heart, every guilty conscience, every sin hid away, every motive of love, everything He’s changed, He knows every little thing about you and me.  We think about videotapes of our lives.  Think about a holographic 3D re-enactment imagery of your life.  Jesus knows every motive and whim.  So Nathanael is found out, if you will, when Jesus says of him, “Look, there’s no deceit in that guy.”  Well, this is enough to push Nathanael over the edge.  He says, “You are, Rabbi, the Son of God.  You are the King of Israel.” 

Jesus' simple statement elicited the most dramatic reaction from Nathaniel. He concluded that the only way Jesus could have seen him when he was under the fig tree was if Jesus had supernatural knowledge.

Evidently Nathanael knew that he was completely alone and that no one could see him when he was under the fig tree. Nathanael's reaction appears extreme at first since even prophets had knowledge of things other people knew nothing about. Why did Nathanael think Jesus was the Son of God and not just a prophet? The answer seems to be that even the title "Son of God" did not mean deity to all the Jews in Jesus' day. It meant that the person in view bore certain characteristics of God (cf. Deut. 3:18; 1 Sam. 26:16; Ps. 89:22; Prov. 31:2; Matt. 5:9; John 17:12). Nathanael appears to have regarded Jesus as the Messiah who had supernatural knowledge (cf. v. 45; 2 Sam. 7:14; Ps. 2:6-7; Isa. 11:1-2). However, Nathaniel spoke better than he knew. Jesus was the Son of God in a fuller sense than he presently understood. 100Bruce, p.

 Following Jesus Is only a beginning v50-51

He’s saying, “If you believe ‘because you think I’m clairvoyant, you're going to see a whole lot more than this that’s going to push you over the edge of belief.”

 Now, if you connect Verse 48 with Verse 51 this fig tree devotion and what Jesus says in 51 about this angels descending and ascending, we go back to Genesis 28:12 where Jacob, the supplanter, the deceiver had the dream and he saw the angels going up and down the ladder, remember?  If that’s true I think what’s happening here, I think it is true, Jesus is saying, “I saw you under the fig tree.  You’re not a deceiver.”  There’s the word.  Jake, I was just thinking about Jacob the deceiver under the tree and those angels going up and down the ladder.  He says, “You’re not a deceiver and you think you saw angels?  I’m here,” Jesus says.  “You’re going to see the angels descend and ascend out of me.  You don’t need a ladder.  You don’t need a conduit.  I am God in flesh.”  So he blows Nathanael away with His insight not only into his soul but into what He knew about his heart. 

Re 8:4 And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel's hand.

Angel’s carry blessings down to us and burdens up to God for us.

 How can all these people come up with all these designations about Christ when they meet Him?  Because when you have an encounter with Jesus Christ and you meet Him your life is dramatically changed and the dots start to come together.  When you follow Jesus Christ He is asking for you to be His disciple and Him to be the master

 At least 16 different names and titles of Jesus appear in chapter one: the Word (vv. 1, 14),the light (vv. 4,7-9), the only begotten of the Father (v. 14), Jesus Christ (v. 17), the only begotten God (v. 18), the Lord (v. 23), the Lamb of God (vv. 29, 36), a man (v. 30), the Son of God (v. 34), Rabbi (Teacher, vv. 38, 49), Messiah (v. 41), Jesus of Nazareth (v.45), the son of Joseph (v. 45), the Son of God (v. 49), the King of Israel (v. 49), and the

Son of Man (v. 51).

 Lessons:

  1. He is the master, you are the follower (disciple)

Now, there are two lessons I want us to conclude on this message and the first is very simple and I’ve already said it a number of times.  If you are a believer in Christ, He is to be your master.  You are to be His disciple.  John sole’s mission in life was to point other people to Jesus and he’s content with stepping out of the light and letting Jesus take the light and letting his friends follow Jesus, and he’s happy with that.  Let me apply that in a question.  Is there any master from which you need to detachment?  Some tentacles from another master still in your soul holding on to your heart and your time?

Maybe you’ve heard it dozens of times, maybe hundreds of times; if you do not embrace Jesus Christ as your Lord, as your King, as your Savior, and your Master, you’re playing with Him, you’re toying with Him.  You going to be a follower?  If you’re going to follow Jesus Christ, it will fundamentally change the purpose of your life.  It cannot not change the purpose of your life.  If it doesn’t it you’ve not embraced who He is.

Jesus Christ is saying to you I’m the teacher, you are the student, and oh by the way, you’re always going to be a student.  Jesus Christ is saying to you I’m the Rabbi, you’re the disciple, oh by the way, you’re always going to be a disciple.  You’ll never be a Rabbi. This generation arches its back against submission like no generation ever has before.  We hate submission.

 2. If you’re going to follow Me then follow me.  Don’t play with Me. Obey Me no matter what anybody tells you, obey me.”  Well, it’s tough, it’s hard.  I mean, gee, whiz Lord.  I had this sexual orientation.  I think I’m gay, I think, you know, I’m living with my girlfriend, I’m living with my boyfriend, I’m sleeping around and I --.  You know, your Bible says that’s wrong but that Bible, it’s an old book.  Come on, Lord.  Everybody says this is okay.  I’m the Master, you’re the child. 

Jesus Christ wants followers, not fans.  He wants committed students, not a crowd of spectators.  Do you think Jesus Christ, the Sustainer, the Creator of the world and the universe is a Master worthy of your obedience?  And if so, what area do you lay down and give to Him? 

Mt 4:19 Then He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men

If you don’t know who Jesus Christ is, Jesus Christ is standing in front of you today in your soul, in your heart and your mind, and just like those first two guys that started walking about Him He’s turned on His heels, He’s locked eyes with you, and He’s saying, “What do you want?”  What are you coming to me for?  What are you looking for in this life?”  And on the authority of the Word of God and Jesus Christ that question still stands men and women.  What do you want?

 And, if you’ve never come to know who Jesus is, He is God.  He lived, He died, He was buried and came back from the dead, and He says, “Anyone who believes in me, I give eternal life.  You want to know what it is, come follow Me.”  “All you have to do is come and follow Him,”

30
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1.9 SAYS IF WE CONFESS OUR SINS PART 2

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1 John 1:9 says If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  To confess means to say the same thing about our sin as God does.  We like to rationalize our sin. Others are conceited, but I respect myself. When others lose their temper, they are angry; me, I have righteous anger. Others are prejudiced; but I have convictions.” Nice labels do not change the poison inside the bottle. Don’t say God, I don’t know if I sinned or not, or if I sinned forgive me, but call it sin like God does. We need to admit and confess sin to be right with God.

28
Mar
2018

ROMANS 1:14-17 JESUS PAID IT ALL

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The important pieces of evidence that surround Christ's resurrection.

  1. There is no dispute among scholars that Jesus was dead after being crucified
  2. Next, there are the early reports of the resurrection.
  • Reports of Jesus' resurrection that come so quickly, you can't just write them off as being a legend.
  • We have one report of the resurrection, including named eye-witnesses that has been dated back by scholars to within months of the resurrection of Jesus. That is historical gold.

        3.   Third, the focus on the empty tomb.

Even the opponents of Jesus implicitly conceded that the tomb of Jesus was empty.

         4.   We have nine ancient sources, inside and outside the New Testament, confirming and corroborating the conviction of the disciples that they encountered the resurrected Jesus.

  • That is an avalanche of historical data.

There are ancient sources inside and outside the New Testament that confirm the fate of Jesus' disciples and the suffering they were subjected to for proclaiming that Jesus had risen.

The resurrection of Jesus is a historical reality based not on mythology, but a solid foundation of historical truth.

         5.   Of course the biggest reason is the Bible says it is so.

1Corinthians 15:1-4 and the rest of the chapter also

Ps 40:9 I have proclaimed the good news of righteousness In the great assembly; Indeed, I do not restrain my lips, O LORD, You Yourself know. 10 I have not hidden Your righteousness within my heart; I have declared Your faithfulness and Your salvation; I have not concealed Your lovingkindness and Your truth From the great assembly.

1Co 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Just live by faith - Hab 2:4; Joh 3:36; Ac 3:21; Ga 3:11; Php 3:9; Heb 10:38

John 16:8 "And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:  9 "of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 "of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  11 "of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

Joh 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 "And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 "For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 "But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

Joh 3:35 "The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. 36 "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him." (NKJV)

25
Mar
2018

JOHN 1.35-42 THE REVEALING OF JESUS TO THE DISCIPLES

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John 1:35 Again, the next day, John stood with two of his disciples. 36 And looking at Jesus as He walked, he said, "Behold the Lamb of God!" 37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 Then Jesus turned, and seeing them following, said to them, "What do you seek?" They said to Him, "Rabbi" (which is to say, when translated, Teacher), "where are You staying?" 39 He said to them, "Come and see." They came and saw where He was staying, and remained with Him that day (now it was about the tenth hour). 40 One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He first found his own brother Simon, and said to him, "We have found the Messiah" (which is translated, the Christ). 42 And he brought him to Jesus. Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, "You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas" (which is translated, A Stone).

 In this section of Scripture we continue to see Jesus revealed to another group of people, very important people in God’s plan for the salvation of Mankind.  This is the last time we see John the Baptist in his role as the revealer of Jesus.  He fades off into the sunset now that his part has been played and the revealed one becomes the main focus of John’s Gospel.  Many people then and probably many today misunderstood the role of John the Baptist.  He is only the newspaper boy telling us to read all about it in the Headlines, Jesus the Lamb of God has come to take away the sin of the World.  We will see John, James, Andrew, and Peter come to Jesus and begin their walk with Him.  This is the beginning of their call to eventually become his Apostles and the ones who would write scripture, and become the foundation of the church.

  1. Following Christ Determines (or means you have to decide) what you want v35-39

Pulpit Evangelism

 Jesus did not call these men to follow Him as His disciples now. That came later (cf. Matt. 4:18-22; 9:9; Mark 1:16-20; 2:13-14; Luke 5:1-11, 27-28). The Apostle John recorded a preliminary contact that these men had with Jesus.

 V37 Two of John the Baptist's disciples started following Jesus because of John's witness. This was perfectly proper since John's ministry was to point others to Jesus. They were not abandoning the Baptist for a more

popular teacher. They were simply doing what John urged his hearers to do. They began following Jesus physically to learn from Him. They also took the first steps toward genuine discipleship. This was no tentative

inquiry but a giving of themselves to Him as disciples.

 "It appears that the Evangelist is writing on two levels. The question makes sense as straightforward narrative: Jesus asks the two men who are following him to articulate what is on their minds. But the Evangelist wants his readers to reflect on a deeper question: the Logos-Messiah confronts those who make any show of beginning to follow him and demands that they articulate what they really want in life." Jesus' question gave the men the opportunity to express their desire to become His disciples. However, they may not have been quite ready to make that commitment. They replied by asking where He was staying. This polite response may have implied that they simply wanted to have a preliminary interview with Him

 John 1:38 "Staying" translates one of the writer's characteristic words (i.e., Gr. meno, "to abide"). Here it means to reside, but often it has theological connotations of continuing on especially in an intimate relationship. These men may have already been wondering if that type of relationship with Jesus might be possible for them. This word occurs 112 times in the New Testament, and John used it 66 of those times, 40 times in his Gospel

1:39 Jesus responded by inviting them to accompany Him, not just to see where He was staying but to visit Him. They first had to come with Him and then they would see. This statement was also highly significant spiritually. Only by coming to Jesus could they really comprehend what they were seeking spiritually. The same thing holds true today.

 Following Jesus  Means an ongoing discovery of who He is v40-41

Friendship Evangelism

We should not conclude, however, that because Andrew believed that Jesus was the Messiah he also believed that He was God. He may have believed this, all the evidence in the Gospels points to the disciples learning of Jesus' deity after they had been with Him for some time (cf. Matt. 16:16; Mark 8:29; Luke 9:20). Probably Andrew thought of Jesus as a great prophet who was the messianic deliverer of Israel. The title "Messiah" means "anointed one." The anointed one in Israel was originally any anointed priest or king who led the people. As time passed God gave prophecies of a coming Davidic king who would liberate the Israelites and establish God's rule over the whole earth (e.g., 2 Sam. 7; Ps.2; 110). Thus the idea of a coming anointed one crystallized into the title "Messiah - The Greek is Christ

 Following Jesus Means you get a new identity v42

1:42 Jesus anticipated what Peter would become in the history of the church by God's grace.

Jesus gave him a nickname that expressed his character, which was not uncommon. It is interesting that Simon Peter originally had the same rash and impulsive character as his ancestor Simeon, the second son of Jacob.

Cephas is Aramaic, the common language of Palestine, and means "Rock." Peter is the Greek translation of Cephas. As the record of Peter unfolds in the Gospels, he appears as anything but a rock; he was impulsive, volatile, and unreliable. Yet Jesus named Peter in view of what he would become by the power of God.

"In bringing his brother Simon Peter to Christ, no man did the church a greater service than Andrew."96

Every time we meet Andrew in this Gospel he is bringing someone to Jesus (cf. 6:8; 12:22).

Jacob means deceiver, Israel means having Power with God or God’s fighter

Abram means high father or exalted father, Abraham means Father of a Multitude

Isa 62:2 The Gentiles shall see your righteousness, And all kings your glory. You shall be called by a new name, Which the mouth of the LORD will name.

 Re 2:17 "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it."'

 Re 3:12 "He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. And I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name.

 

21
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:9 SAYS IF WE CONFESS OUR SINS

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1 John 1:9 says If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  You ask why do we have to confess our sins if God has already forgiven us.  We can never lose our salvation, but we can mess up the relationship. If I slap you and ask you later to do something for me, I am sure you would say no.  You would at least want an apology, it is the same with God, we grieve Him when we sin, and we need to ask forgiveness to restore our right relationship and place in His will. So, have we asked God to forgive us today and made sure we are in fellowship with Him?

18
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:31-34 THE REVEALING OF JESUS TO JOHN AND ISRAEL

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John 1:31 "I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water." 32 And John bore witness, saying, "I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. 33 "I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.' 34 "And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God."

            This is a great section of scripture that tells us that John did not know Jesus even though he was His cousin.  It gives us a glimpse into the mind of God and how He works when showing us His will.  If you want to know the will of God you have to do the will of God that has already been revealed.  We will also see the difference between John’s baptism and the Baptism that Jesus came to give to us who would believe in His name.

 Verse 31 I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel."

  • Up to this time even though John was the cousin of Jesus he did not know Jesus
  • He had lived in the wilderness so they had no contact with each other
  • He is in effect denying that he and Jesus had schemed together
  • He had to go before Jesus baptizing to fulfill prophecy

 Verse 32 - Then John gave this testimony: "I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.

Verse 33 - I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.'

Mt 3:13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried to prevent Him, saying, "I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?" 15 But Jesus answered and said to him, "Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness." Then he allowed Him. 16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

Mark 1:12 At once the Spirit sent him out into the desert, 13 and he was in the desert forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.

  • In his first act of public ministry Christ was identifying himself publicly with sinners
  • His perfect righteousness will be given to us
  • His baptism represented his death, burial, and resurrection
  • His being the Messiah was publicly attested to by God’s voice from heaven
  • Notice John saw Christ, the Holy Spirit come down on Him, and heard God’s voice from heaven.
  • He was an eyewitness of Christ’s Majesty

2Peter 1:16 We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.

 Verse 34 - I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God."

Hebrews1:1-3 

1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. 3 The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.

14
Mar
2018

WARDEN BURL CAIN TESTIMONY FOR HIS LOVE MINISTRIES

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Listen to Burl Cain former Warden of Angola State Prison describe what it means to all of us when people minister to those in Jails and Prisons

www.hisloveministries.podbean.com

#HLMSocial 

www.hisloveministries.net

To see a short presentation of all we do go to:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_u49CmD55WlMWQ1UTNNN0RtTkU/view

His Love Ministries
A Ministry Dedicated to Reaching out to those the World Has Forgotten!
Board of Directors: President: Marty McKenzie
Robin Evans, Gina McCall, Jerry McNair, George Mitchler, Vicki Mitchler, Esther Wilson
Staff: Marty McKenzie, Ronnie Nichols, Erik Lacanilao, Matt Gallant, Brandon Beard
PO Box 30513, Savannah, GA 31410 Phone: 912-398-0573
Non-Profit 501 (c) 3 Organization Tax ID- 58-2549397
Contact E-mail: mmckenzie@hisloveministries.net

How we use our funds
To purchase Bibles and Bible-based Literature for large print hymnals for the Nursing Homes.
The funds are also used for daily expenses that have allowed us to continue our current ministry and expand the amount of church services and Bible Studies in the Jail, Transitional Center, Youth Detention Center, Prisons, Nursing Homes/Assisted Living Facilities, and Treatment Facilities for Adults, Youth, and Adolescents

Our Mission
His Love Ministries is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit Christian Ministry. This ministry is based on Matthew 25:35-40. The key verse is 40: “And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'” Our mission is to spread the gospel throughout: correctional facilities (adult and youth), nursing homes/assisted living facilities, treatment centers (adult and youth), and the local community to reach more people with the life-changing message of Jesus Christ; to equip and edify those who know Christ as their Lord and Savior; to build greater relationships with those in need by providing joy, comfort, and security in their lives through Bible studies, church services, correspondence, and site visits. We reach out to those the World has forgotten. Everyone we minister to is locked up in some way, shape, or form. Those in the nursing homes are captive in bodies that don't function, a wheelchair, a bed or a facility they cannot get out of; children and youth who are locked up due to behavioral and emotional crisis. They have been separated from their parents, and all they want is true unconditional love (some have said to me, “We want a real family”). We also minister to those locked up in the jail, prison and Youth Detention center; and those “locked up” in addictions to drugs, alcohol, depression, and suicidal thoughts and a variety of other things that keep them from becoming who Jesus wants them to be. Jesus Christ came to set us free from the burden and penalty of sin and give us abundant life. We want all these people to see how much God loves them; that He made a way through Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness and freedom from their sin.
Our organization serves People in facilities that are unable to get to a Church service or
Bible Study. We reach out to the forgotten.
We have been on mission in Correctional Facilities since December 1997; Nursing
Homes/Assisted Living Facilities since April 1999 and Coastal Harbor Treatment Center since
February 2009

Recipients of our services and how many people we serve each year
We serve the People in facilities that are unable to get to a Church or Bible Study. We reach
out to those the world has forgotten.
We conduct about 2,321 church services and Bible studies a year (193 a month).
We currently minister in 12 Nursing Homes/Assisted Living Facilities; 5 youth and adult
Correctional facilities; 3 Behavioral Treatment Facilities for youth and adults, Greenbriar
Children's Center, and the Savannah Mission Bible Training Center. We also do a Bible Study
at a church that is a substitute for an AA or NA program.

12
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:27-30 JESUS IS THE LAMB OF GOD THAT TAKES AWAY THE SIN OF THE WORLD

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John 1:27 "It is He who, coming after me, is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose." 28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing. 29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30 "This is He of whom I said, 'After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was before me.'

            In this tremendous passage of scripture we see John the Baptist still saying he is nothing compared to Jesus. He tells us that before he talks about Jesus and then again after he points us to the Lamb of God. He will tell us about that glorious Lamb that takes away the sin of the world and was predicted all the way back in Genesis 3:15, and spoken of so many times in the Old Testament sacrifices. He tells us that Jesus is the only one who can take away our sin and provide salvation.

 Verse 26   "I baptize with water," John replied, "but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie."

John replied by implying that his authority to baptize as he did came from an authoritative figure who was present but yet unknown. John did not identify Him then. This would have exposed Jesus to the scrutiny of Israel's leadership prematurely. John only realized that Jesus was the Messiah after he said these words (cf. v. 31). John simply referred to this One and implied that he baptized in water under divine authority. He stressed the great authority of Jesus by saying he was unworthy to do even menial service for Him. Thus John bore witness to Jesus even before he identified Him as the Messiah.

1st He tells them he only baptizes with water and cannot do any more

  • The baptism signified when the Gentiles were converted into Judaism
  • It signified repentance and becoming a people of God
  • This was amazing as they hated Gentiles and they were saying they were as Gentiles
  • Repenting in anticipation of the return of the Messiah

2nd He points them to the one all of our lives should point to Christ

  • One that can do for them what he cannot

Next he tells them that Jesus stands among them

  • God is often nearer to us than we know
  • Christ is to be preferred over him
  • Notice that the priests and Pharisees do not ask John where the Messiah is
  • They wanted to harass him
  • The did not come to receive instructions so their ignorance was willful
  • They might have known Christ but would not, this is willful rejection of Christ

Psalm 84:10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. 11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

"To get the full impact of this we must bear in mind that disciples did do many services for their teachers. Teachers in ancient Palestine were not paid (it would be a terrible thing to ask for money for teaching Scripture!). But in partial compensation disciples were in the habit of performing small services for their rabbis instead. But they had to draw the line somewhere, and menial tasks like loosing the sandal thong came under this heading. There is a rabbinic saying (in its present form dating from c. A.D. 250, but probably much older):  ‘Every service which a slave performs for his master shall a disciple do for his teacher except the loosing of his sandal-thong.' John selects the very task that the rabbinic saying stresses as too menial for any disciple, and declares himself unworthy to perform it."

Verse 28 This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

  • Notice the place where this happens

Bethany – Signifies the house of passage two Bethany’s, one where the disciples live and one near the Jordan, confuse it by calling it Bethabara

 There's one down there by Jerusalem where Mary and Martha and Lazarus lived. And there's another one,

  • Some think it was the very place where Israel passed over into the promised land under the guidance of Joshua
  • Now Jesus opens a way through here to the Gospel
  1. The Presentation at Christ’s Baptism

Verse 29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

Ex 12:3; Isa 53:7,11; Joh 1:36; Ac 8:32; 1Co 15:3; Ga 1:4; Heb 1:3; 2:17; 9:28; 1Pe 1:19; 2:24; 3:18; 1Jo 2:2; 3:5; 4:10; Re 1:5; 5:6

Genesis 22:1-14 Abraham sacrificing Isaac

  • The use of a Lamb as a sacrifice was very familiar to the Jews
  • A lamb was used as a sacrificed during the Passover

Exodus 12:21 Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Go at once and select the animals for your families and slaughter the Passover lamb. 22 Take a bunch of hyssop, dip it into the blood in the basin and put some of the blood on the top and on both sides of the doorframe. Not one of you shall go out the door of his house until morning. 23 When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, he will see the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down. 24 "Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants.

  • A lamb was to led to slaughter in the prophecies of Isaiah

Isaiah 53:7

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

  • A lamb was offered in the daily sacrifices of Israel

Leviticus14:12 "Then the priest is to take one of the male lambs and offer it as a guilt offering, along with the log of oil; he shall wave them before the LORD as a wave offering.

  • Jesus was the Lamb that was sacrificed to take away the sin of the world when he died on the cross

Verse 30 This is the one I meant when I said, 'A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.'

7
Mar
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:8 WE ARE DECEIVED IF WE BELIEVE WE HAVE NOT SINNED

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1 John 1:8 says If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  I remember I was talking to a woman about Christ and she told me she never sinned.  I told her the Bible says we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God.  But she had been deceived and thought she had no need of Christ since she was not a sinner.  How about you?  Do you think you are good enough to get to heaven on your own?  Romans 6:23 says the wages of sin are death, but the gift of God is eternal life.  You need to ask God to forgive you and save you because Jesus died on the cross for your sins, that’s the only way to get to Heaven.

5
Mar
2018

JOHN 1:19-26 THE TESTIMONY OF JOHN ABOUT HIMSELF

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John 1:19 Now this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?" 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, "I am not the Christ." 21 And they asked him, "What then? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the Prophet?" And he answered, "No." 22 Then they said to him, "Who are you, that we may give an answer to those who sent us? What do you say about yourself?" 23 He said: "I am 'The voice of one crying in the wilderness: "Make straight the way of the LORD,"' as the prophet Isaiah said." 24 Now those who were sent were from the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, saying, "Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?" 26 John answered them, saying, "I baptize with water, but there stands One among you whom you do not know.

We’ve seen the testimony of John about Christ, now we see the powers that be asking John who he is and why he is doing all the things he is doing, especially baptizing.  They are worried about who he is and why he has come and why so many people are flocking to him out in the desert.  John will not even speak about who he is but does what he always does, his job, which is to point others to Jesus.  The ones who are sent go away without the answer of who he is, but heard something much more important that they do not even listen to or care about.  How sad for them.

The Presentation by John The Baptist

Who was John? …The cousin of Jesus

We see the early years of John the Baptist in Luke 1:5-80

His birth is foretold by Gabriel to His father Zacharias in 1: 5-25   

Zacharias rendered speechless

Jesus birth is foretold to Mary in 1:26-38

Mary’s visit to Elizabeth in 1:39-45

Baby leaped for Joy (John)

Mary sings a song of joy in 1:46-56

John’s birth in 1:57-66 ….Named him John

Zacharias’ prophetic song in 1:67-79

John’s growth and early life in 1:80

He lived in the wilderness, wore a camel hair coat and ate locusts and honey

We see his Public Ministry in Luke 3:1-18

  1. John’s Presentation of Christ to the religious leaders – verses 19-28

Verse19 - Now this was John's testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was.

  • Jews used about seventy times in John’s Gospel. Refers to the Sanhedrin or governing body of Jews
  • Made up of legalistic Pharisees who had about 600 laws that they kept in addition to the 10 Commandments
  • They traveled 26 miles to question John
  • This shows 7 things
  1. Sending persons of such character and figure, was showing John a great deal of honor
  2. Serves to make his testimony of Christ the more public and remarkable
  3. It also shows what a noise John's ministry and baptism made among the Jews, that it even reached Jerusalem, and the great council of the nation;
  4. They thought he was the Messiah, it shows the opinion that was entertained of him

Luke 3:15 The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John might possibly be the Christ.

  1. They were afraid that there may be something to what he was saying. They were the top dogs and might lose their position of power.
  2. They thought they needed no repentance, so could not stand someone preaching it
  3. It was a show of power, they sought to stop him from his ministry

Verse - 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, "I am not the Christ." Or Messiah... both mean "the Anointed One 21 They asked him, "Then who are you? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the Prophet?" He answered, "No."

  • Hearing of John’s doctrine, character, and baptism because he appeared so suddenly, he seemed to have dropped from heaven in the part of the country where Elijah was taken to heaven so they thought he was Elijah

Mal 4:5 “See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.

 Mt 11:14 And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.

Luke 1:17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous-- to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."

Mt17:12 But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands." 13 Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist.

1st He had already told them he is not the Messiah

2nd He was not a prophet like Samuel or Elijah who would get involved in public affairs and bring them out from under the yoke of Roman Bondage

3rd He was not Elijah that had been raised from the dead

4th He was a prophet who had revelation from God, but did not get his revelation by dreams and visions as did the OT prophets

5th They thought the prophet and the Messiah were two different people

Verse - 22 Finally they said, "Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?" 23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, "I am the voice of one calling in the desert, 'Make straight the way for the Lord.'" {Isaiah 40:3}

  • In the original context this refers to God leading them from Babylonian exile through the desert
  • Romans 11:25-27 - It is a prophetic call for Israel’s greatest and final return to God from spiritual darkness.
  • His humble attitude –
  • He refers to himself as a mere voice thus focusing the attention totally on Christ
  • The voice of one Crying –(Crying out loud) His earnestness and heart for the people to repent
  • He was in the wilderness – Hear from God when secluded and in solitude away from the hustle and bustle of the world.
  • Have you ever heard the still small voice of the LORD?

1Kings19:11 The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by." Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.

  • Make straight the way of the Lord
  • He came to rectify the corruption of the law by the scribes and Pharisees
  • To prepare people to receive the Lord

Psalm 24:7 Lift up your heads, O you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.

Verse 24 Now some Pharisees who had been sent 25 questioned him, "Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?"

  • They asked knowing it would be used when the Messiah came
  • Zechariah 13:1 "On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.
  • Ezekiel 36:25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols.26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
  • They asked because he had denied he was Elijah and they wanted to know by what authority he Baptized

Verse26 - “I baptize with water," John replied, "but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie."

1st He tells them he only baptizes with water and cannot do any more

  • The baptism signified when the Gentiles were converted into Judaism
  • It signified repentance and becoming a people of God
  • This was amazing as they hated Gentiles and they were saying they were as Gentiles
  • Repenting in anticipation of the return of the Messiah

2nd He points them to the one all of our lives should point to Christ

  • One that can do for them what he cannot

Next he tells them that Jesus stands among them

  • God is often nearer to us than we know
  • Christ is to be preferred over him
  • Notice that the priests and Pharisees do not ask John where the Messiah is
  • They wanted to harass him
  • The did not come to receive instructions so their ignorance was willful
  • They might have known Christ but would not, this is a willful rejection of Christ

Psalm 84:10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. 11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

28
Feb
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:7 THE STANDARD OF TRUE SALVATION

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1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.

Hi, I'm Marty McKenzie with His Love Ministries.  1 John 1:7 says But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. This is better translated since we walk in the light.  This means we have truly been saved, we are habitually living according to the truth of the bible, we have a special bond with other believers because of the Holy Spirit that lives in us, and we are continually being cleansed from sin by the blood of Jesus Christ. Does your life meet this standard of true salvation? 

25
Feb
2018

JOHN 1:15-18 THE WITNESS OF JOHN ABOUT JESUS CHRIST

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John 1:15 John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, "This was He of whom I said, 'He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.'" 16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.

             In this section of scripture we see the use of courtroom terms giving us the legal witness of John the Baptist about Jesus and who He is.  We see that John talks about Jesus being the preeminent one and that we see all of God in Him.  That He gives Grace whereas Moses gave the law which could only condemn.  Lastly we see that Jesus is the one who explains to us who the Father is.

 Verse 15- John the Baptists testimony corroborates John the apostles statement regarding the eternality of The Incarnate Word.

Verse 16- Grace for grace This phrase emphasizes the superabundance of grace that has been displayed by God toward mankind especially believers.

Ephesians 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will-- 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace

 Ephesians 2:4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions-- it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

Verses 17 and 18 shows that the law given by Moses was not a display of God’s grace, but God’s demand for holiness. God designed the law as a means to demonstrate the unrighteousness of man in order to show the need for a Savior Romans 3:19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin. 21 But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,  24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

Galatians 3:10,14 and 21-26 also speak of this

The law revealed only part of the truth and was given to prepare men for the full truth, the reality towards which the law pointed came in the person of Jesus Christ.

Verse 18- Who is in the bosom of the Father – tells of the mutual intimacy, love, and knowledge existing in the Godhead(three in one God) Luke 16:22 The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham's side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side.

Declared- Theologians-men who study religion derived the term exegesis which means to interpret

John meant that all Jesus is and does interprets who God is and what He does.

21
Feb
2018

30 SECOND DEVOTIONAL 1 JOHN 1:6 ARE YOU IN FELLOWSHIP WITH JESUS OR ARE YOU A LIAR?

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1 John 1:6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

Hi, I'm Marty McKenzie with His Love Ministries.  1 John 1:6 says If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.  Today there are many people who say they are Christians, they trust in Jesus and they are going to heaven, yet they still live in sin and do not intend to change.  This verse says that a person that says he knows Jesus, but still habitually lives in sin is a liar and does not live according to the truth of the Bible.  The bottom line is that if you live that way, you have not been saved, and you will not go to heaven.

18
Feb
2018

JOHN 1:14 JESUS CAME AS GOD IN A HUMAN BODY

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John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

 If you want to read a book of the Bible that will tell you about who Jesus really is and why He came, read this Book.  John 20:30-31 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name. (NKJV)  John wrote this book with no birth narrative, no manger scene, no geneology, but he went straight to the point in John 1:1-2 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. He wants to let us know the Jesus is God in human flesh.  He is not God as some of the cults say, but He is THE ONE AND ONLY GOD.  John uses seven Key miracles, seven key people and the seven I AM statements of Jesus to make the point that Jesus is who He said He was and still is today.

 The Incarnation of Christ….Incarnation means in the flesh

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

 Matthew 1:17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ. 18 ¶ This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19  Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.  20  But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  21  She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." 22  All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23  "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel" --which means, "God with us." 24  When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25  But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

 Verse 14 – The Word became Flesh- This emphasizes that the eternal and uncreated Christ took on human form.  The Infinite became Finite.  The Eternal was conformed to time.  The Invisible became Visible.  The Supernatural One became Natural.  He was still all God and all man.

The benefits of this are:

  • He revealed the Father to us
  • He is our example
  • He is our sympathetic High Priest
  • Died to save sinners

Dwelt – means to pitch a tabernacle (some temporary structure or shelter) Or live in a tent

Exodus 33:11 – Tabernacle of witness- where God spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend.  In the New Testament- God chose to dwell among his people in a far more personal way by becoming a man.

We Beheld His Glory – Although his deity was veiled, we still see glimpses of his Divine Majesty, Matthew 17:1-8 – Mount of Transfiguration – They also saw Christ’s glory in a spiritual way (grace, goodness, mercy, wisdom, truth) Exodus 33:18 Then Moses said, "Now show me your glory." 19 And the LORD said, "I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 20 But," he said, "you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live." 21 Then the LORD said, "There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. 22 When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen."

 Only begotten- has the idea of “the Only Beloved One” it emphasizes the character of the relationships between God and Jesus- giving Jesus a unique prominence (being first).

 Full of grace and truth- Exodus 33:18 Then Moses said, "Now show me your glory." 19 And the LORD said, "I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 20 But," he said, "you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live." 21 Then the LORD said, "There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. 22 When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen."

 Exodus 34:5 Then the LORD came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the LORD.  6 And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7 maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation."

LORD-Yahweh-The Self Existent One

Jesus as Yahweh of the OT displayed the same attributes as when he tabernacled among men in the NT