Category Archives: John

Slow Down And Look

John the Baptist was given a simple commission from God. He was to go into the wilderness, and to baptize those whom God sent. It was in the wilderness – unplugged – that John found the Messiah.

John 1:29-33 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. 30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. 31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. 32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. 33 And I knew him not:…

This passage fascinates me. In the passage we see the witness of John the Baptist concerning Jesus Christ. Twice John tells us, “I knew him not”. This is the Greek eidō autos ou, and it carries the sense that

John knew Jesus as COUSIN, but not as CHRIST.

John the Baptist and Jesus were cousins. When Mary became with Child of the Holy Spirit, the Angel Gabriel told her:

Luke 1:36 And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren.

Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Elisabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, were cousins. Their children were cousins. They grew up not far apart, and perhaps played together as children. And yet John says, “I knew him not”. He knew Jesus as a cousin, but had no idea that He was the Messiah. How did John come to know that Jesus was the Messiah? … Continue reading

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The Mark Of The Lost

Do You Love Jesus, Or What Jesus Gives?

Word Study Let’s break this verse down. Jesus had “disciples” who followed Him. The word translated “disciples” is the Greek μαθητής mathētēs, which means “a student, a learner, a pupil, a follower of another”. There were a great deal of people who followed Jesus. What were they following Him for? Were they following Jesus because they loved Jesus? No, they were following Jesus because they loved what Jesus gave them.

The disciples who left Jesus were not following Him out of love for Him. They followed Jesus out of love for what Jesus would DO for them.

We see this in our context. You always need to read the context. If you flip back just one page in my Bible to the beginning of chapter 6, you read of the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand. Jesus took “five barley loaves and two small fishes” (verse 9) and blessing it, fed five thousand men (verse 10). The Bible says:… Continue reading

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Do You Have Christ’s Fullness?

This Jesus, this “Word was made flesh”. The word translated “made” is the Greek γίνομαι gínomai, {pronounced ghin’-om-ahee}, which means “to begin to be, to become”. Though Jesus was born (Greek γεννάω {pronounced gennaō}) into this world as children have always been born, John previously made the point that Jesus preexisted with God the Father in eternity. Jesus did not just come to be when Mary bore Him (Matthew 1:16), but existed with both Father and Spirit from eternity past. Through the operation of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35) and without the assistance of man, Jesus was conceived. He, Eternal God, took on flesh. The Biblical Illustrator notes:

“It was a custom of old among the shepherds, they {clothed} themselves with sheep-skins, to be more pleasing to the sheep; so Christ clothed Himself with our flesh, that the Divine nature may be more pleasing to us {Less frightening}. The human nature {of Christ} is {like} a glass, through which we may see the love and wisdom and glory of God clearly represented to us. Through the lantern of Christ’s humanity, we may behold the light of the Deity shining.”… Continue reading

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Receive Jesus, Receive Power

The most important part of the race is the finish. I don’t know about you, but I want to finish well. I don’t want to be like Judas Iscariot who, following Jesus for 3 ½ years, ended up hanging himself (Matthew 27:5-8). Peter said of Judas,

Acts 1:18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.

What a horrible ending that was! One author notes, “Perhaps Judas hanged himself and in the process also fell (lit. “flat on his face”)… Continue reading

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What About That Mansion?

One Sunday my Sunday School class was talking about “mansions”. What brought up the subject was Jesus’ wonderful and familiar words in:

John 14:1-2 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

That stayed in my mind, and the Spirit of God led me to research these “mansions”. The word translated “mansions” or “mansion” is only found ONE TIME in the King James Bible. I used to assume that these “mansions” are literal buildings in Heaven where we will live. When I think of a “mansion”, I think of a place of ultimate contentment where my every need is met.

Word Study But what the King James translates as “mansions” is much more than a brick and mortar building. “mansions” is the Greek word μονή monḗ, {pronounced mon-ay’}, which means “a place to stay, a residence”. The Vines Expository Dictionary Usage Notes says of monḗ:

Primarily “a staying, abiding” (akin to menō, “to abide”), denotes an “abode” (English, “manor,” “manse,” etc.), translated “mansions” in John 14:2; “abode” in John 14:23. There is nothing in the word to indicate separate compartments in heaven; neither does it suggest temporary resting places on the road…. Continue reading

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Touch Me Not

In our 8:30 service today we’re going to be looking at the empty tomb of our Lord. We’ll be in John 19:38-20:10. For our Sunrise Service I wanted to look at the verses that come after this. Having seen the burial clothes of Jesus in the empty tomb, Peter and John go back home:

John 20:10-13 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home. 11 But Mary stood without at the sepulcher weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulcher, 12 and seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. 13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers!

“But Mary stood without at the sepulcher weeping”. Peter and John saw the empty tomb and the clothes left behind, but Mary lingered. When she first found the tomb opened she ran back to the disciples, telling them:

John 20:2 … They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulcher, and we know not where they have laid him.

Mary had not found Jesus’ body, so she was not satisfied. Someone must have taken Jesus’ body!

Mary was often found sitting at the feet of Jesus, hearing Him teach (Luke 10:38-39). When Mary’s brother Lazarus died she told Jesus… Continue reading

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What Is Truth? God’s Word Is Truth!

Pilate extensively examined Jesus. Jesus was no threat to the Roman empire. “My kingdom is not of this world” (36). Pilate asked Jesus if He were a king. Jesus refused to assume the title at this point in history. Jesus is indeed “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” (1 Timothy 6:15), but His primary role at this time is “to bear witness to the truth”:

John 18:37 To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

Our Lord Jesus Christ came to this earth to “bear witness to the truth”. Those who are of the truth hear Jesus. Those who are of the world ignore Jesus, judge Jesus, mock Jesus. Pilate asked, “What is truth?” (38). Jesus is truth. God’s Word is truth.

The trial of Jesus gives us an insight into the eternal struggle between “Truth” and “truth”. The religious court, which was suppose to support God’s Truth, ignored the truth. Pilate, a career politician, ignored Capital “T” Truth. If you ask people about truth today, they will tell you:

Truth is what you make it.
Truth is based on what you feel.
Truth varies from person to person.

If truth is little “t”, constantly variable, then… Continue reading

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The Christian View Of Politics

I teach a men’s discipleship Bible study on Tuesday nights at our Church. As we come together, we fellowship, and study the Word of God. As part of our class we talk about things going on around us.

In our class last night, several of the men wanted to get home right after the Bible Study so they could watch the Presidential Debates. If you watched the debates (I didn’t), I was told that it was a – and I quote one news source – a “hot mess”. Again, I didn’t watch it. But as part of our study we are going through the Book of John, and the text we read are really appropriate to this time in American history. What we read was what occurred right after Lazarus was resurrected from the grave by Jesus. Let’s read this together… Continue reading

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3. The MUSTS Of Christianity: The MUST Of Decreasing Self

If you think you have everything, you will never seek the more. Many profess Christ, think they are saved, but when I ask them “Are you saved?” they tell me “I hope so”. Now “hope” is a fine thing. The Bible tells us “and now abideth faith, HOPE, and love” (1 Corinthians 13:13). Biblical hope is not human “hope so”.

Biblical hope is a certain knowledge that, though you have not received the promises, you will receive the promises because God is faithful (1 Corinthians 1:9). Continue reading

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Christ Lifted Up

As Jesus discussed salvation with this “master teacher of Judaism” He began to reveal that Christianity is not just another religion among many. Those who are true Christians are “born again of the Spirit of God” (John 3:3, 5, 8). A Christian becomes a Christian because that person calls on Jesus to be saved. The Genuine Call from the lost person creates what you might call a chain effect which is described in … Continue reading

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