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Tag Archives: Gospel of John

An Appointment with Destiny

Few people realize when they wake up in the morning of a particularly fateful day that they will be forever changed before they retire for the evening. Such a day occurred for the Samaritan woman the day she went out and met Jesus at Jacob’s well. Looking back on the scene, we can only marvel over the compassion God has for our condition. What a contrast there is between God and mankind. He created us to be his image, but, if there is anyone mankind does not wish to imitate, it would be God. Whether it is in politics, education, entertainment or even religion, we simply refuse to be like God! Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2011 in Jesus, Woman at the well

 

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Removing the Barriers

A few weeks earlier Jesus had spoken of his body being the Temple of God (John 2:19-21), but he was misunderstood by the rulers of the Jews. The Temple was divided into courts that separated the priests from the rest of the Israelites, these were still divided between men and women, and last of all there was a court for the gentiles, which was to the extreme limit of the Temple complex. No one was to go beyond the place provided for his status before God as spelled out in the traditions of those ruling the Temple. Yet, in Christ, the living Temple of God, there are no barriers. The wall of separation between us is torn down (Ephesians 2:13-14). In him there is neither Jew nor Greek, male or female, bond or free (Galatians 3:28). He is our Temple—we dwell in him, and in him there is no discrimination of any kind. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2011 in Gospel, Woman at the well

 

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God Desires Worship!

A long time ago when I was a little boy of seven or eight years of age, my cousin told me a story concerning his friend’s younger brother. According to my cousin, the little guy went to the corner store and bought a dime’s worth of candy—back when a dime bought quite a lot. Anyway, the young lad paid for his treasure with some stones he collected from his yard. Obviously, the woman who gave him the candy thought he was cute and took the stones as payment. Of course the stones had no value, but the incident is priceless. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 9, 2011 in God, Worship

 

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The Atypical… Jesus!

Did you ever notice that Jesus just will not fit into a box? He just doesn’t fit our preconceptions. John was astonished to find that Jesus was the Messiah (John 1:31, 33). The rulers of the Jews just could not understand his message (John 2:20). They were exceedingly impressed with his miracles, but simply could not understand what he was trying to say (John 3:1-2, 4, 9). Why was this so? Why didn’t anyone who read and were devoted to the Scriptures understand who Jesus was (John 1:11)? I believe the answer to these questions is that those who were devoted to God and the Scriptures had preconceived notions about what God was telling them through Moses and the Prophets. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2011 in Gospel, Religion, salvation

 

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The Gift of Life from the Murdered One!

Before I leave the discussion of Jesus with Nicodemus, I wish to consider again John 3:14. Here Jesus made reference to Numbers 21:4-9. What an odd reference to compare with Jesus! The serpent is often a figure of the Enemy—Satan. It has been since Genesis 3 where man fell into rebellion against God. There God promised that the Seed of the woman would be at war with the seed of the ‘serpent.’ In this battle the ‘serpent’ would receive the death blow (to the head) but the Seed of the woman would be wounded (per the heal). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 1, 2011 in Gospel, Jesus, Religion

 

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The Importance of the Whole Truth

Nicodemus talked with Jesus from the beginning of Jesus’ ministry at Jerusalem. Nicodemus believed Jesus was sent by God, but he had great difficulty understanding what Jesus was saying. Why is that? We are presented with a paradox right here in chapter three of John’s Gospel. John presents Nicodemus coming to Jesus by night. He was an important man in Jerusalem, and he came to Jesus saying they, that is, he and the other important people or rulers of the Jews at Jerusalem, realized that God had sent Jesus to them (John 3:2). In other words, Nicodemus believed at the very least that Jesus is a prophet from God. Just admitting this was a controversy, because some Jewish writings of that day speak of the Jews no longer hearing from God through a prophet—the prophets of God have stopped coming back around the time of Ezra. Yet, here is Jesus, whom Nicodemus claimed he believed was sent by God. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 21, 2011 in Born Again, Gospel, Religion

 

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You Must Be Born Again!

When Nicodemus came to speak with Jesus about the Kingdom of God, he was astonished to understand that as a Jew and son of Abraham, he had no right to the Kingdom of God. Even as a disciplined Pharisee, devoted to the Law, he had no right to the Kingdom of God. He couldn’t inherit this right; he couldn’t earn this right and the right could not be bestowed upon him by any man, no matter how lofty his position! This thought utterly astonished Nicodemus, and it ought to give us pause as well. How can I come into God’s Kingdom, if I cannot enter through my Christian parents, if I cannot enter through righteous discipline, or it cannot be bestowed upon me by a religious or legal authority or ceremonial act? How can I become a child of God? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2011 in Gospel, Religion, salvation

 

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How Not to Become a Christian

Christ talking with Nicodemus at night (Christ...

Image via Wikipedia

Reading John 3 causes me to pause and revisit John 1:12-13 to consider its meaning once more. Nicodemus (John 3:1) was a very religious man who followed the Law of Moses meticulously. In fact, as a Pharisee, he also followed another law—the Oral Law. Traditionally, it is supposed to have been handed down from Moses, but its source is probably among the traditions brought back from Babylon following the captivity. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2011 in Gospel, Religion, salvation

 

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Commercializing God

The Passover was supposed to be a time of celebration for the Jews’ deliverance from bondage. God humbled the leading power of the ancient world in order to bring his people out from under their authority. The Passover was one of seven annual Holy Days that were to turn the eyes of the people to God in thanksgiving for what he had done for them. Jews from all over the world would journey to Jerusalem to celebrate these feasts. For some, this would be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2011 in Gospel, Jesus, Religion

 

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Jesus Cleanses the Temple

Many critics point to John’s placement of the Temple cleansing and conclude either John has it wrong or the Synoptics do. In other words it is possible for Jesus to do this only once in his life. But, Jesus did many things more than once. He raised Lazarus from the dead near the end of his public ministry and the son of the widow near the beginning of his public ministry. He healed several blind men, several who couldn’t walk etc. So, why couldn’t he cleanse the Temple more than once? The fact is each of the Gospel writers point to a different Temple cleansing. So, Jesus did it at least four times in his public ministry! But for now, I am only interested in what John has to say. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 14, 2011 in Gospel, Jesus, Religion

 

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Marriage at Cana

The Synoptic Gospels put Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness between his baptism and his public ministry, but not John. John puts the marriage in Cana of Galilee between Jesus’ baptism and public life. Did you ever wonder if there is any significance in this? This is where Jesus changed water into wine and is the first of seven signs or specific miracles to which John refers. John mentions that Jesus did many miracles, but he refers us to seven particular miracles, saying these have special significance and reveal Jesus as the Messiah or Christ in order that we may believe and have life (John 20:30-31) Therefore, what does this first miracle mean, or what significance does it hold in revealing Jesus as the Messiah? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2011 in Gospel, Jesus, Religion

 

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Jesus’ First Disciples

epistula-apostolorum

from Google Images

When John the Baptist pointed to Jesus, saying “This is he of whom I spoke… who is preferred before me… the Lamb of God” (John 1:30, 36), two of his disciples left him and followed Jesus. One was Andrew and the other was probably the writer of the Gospel of John (John 1:37, 40). Shortly afterward, Andrew found his brother, Simon, whom the Lord surnamed Peter, and told him he had found the Messiah. On their journey back to Galilee from Bethabara, which was where Jesus was baptized and near Judea on the other side of the Jordan, Jesus also found Philip. Jesus said to Philip, “Follow me!” Immediately, Philip went and found his friend, Nathaniel, and told him he had found the Messiah. At first Nathaniel chided Philip, not believing anything of import could come from Nazareth, but when he met Jesus, he also believed. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 11, 2011 in Apostles, Gospel, Religion

 

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Behold the Lamb of God!

In the past few blogs concerning John’s Gospel, we’ve been considering what John the Baptist didn’t know about Jesus. If what I’ve written is true, that is, that John was flabbergasted that Jesus, the carpenter’s Son was the Messiah, and that John fully expected, but was wrong to assume, some really fantastic events would occur through the Messiah in that generation, in order to make the Jewish nation the leading nation in the world. If this is true concerning what John didn’t know, how could he have understood that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29, 36)? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 9, 2011 in Baptism, John the Baptist, Religion

 

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John’s Testimony of Astonishment!

Did you ever see something that took you by surprise and you did a “double-take”? You know, you looked once as you were walking and then it hit you, and you stopped, because you had to give it another, more lingering look. I believe this is what John is telling us when the Gospel writer records: “I knew him not…” John repeats this in verse-33. He was astonished that he did not know the Messiah without seeing the Father’s sign that the Holy Spirit would descend and remain upon the One who was to come. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 7, 2011 in Christianity, Godhead, Religion

 

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John’s Confession!

It is difficult to find ministries these days that don’t claim to have it all. They preach the word like no one else, help the needy in their community and are first on the scene of every disaster. I’m not trying to make light of anyone’s ministry in Christ, but it seems at times it is difficult for anyone to admit any weakness, or limitation. In reality, they most likely are proficient at one thing and are connected to and financially support other anonymous, but proficient and separate, ministries who take care the needy and still others who are especially ready to help out in disasters. Nevertheless, to listen to some folks, they are a mega-ministry in the hands of the Lord. Perhaps one or two are, but I simply cannot believe everyone on Christian radio and TV is that big and powerful. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2011 in Christianity, Gospel, Religion

 

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