Thursday, October 13, 2011

It's all about Jesus! - October 13th, 2011

37 And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form. 38 But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent, Him you do not believe. 39 You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. 40 But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.
John 5:37-40

History and Context:
The book of John is the fourth Gospel and it is believed to be the last written. John was one of the inner three of Jesus' disciples and referred to himself as "the disciple whom Jesus loved". John seemed to have written his Gospel for those who had already known the story of Jesus. He focuses on the meaning of the events rather than the events themselves. There is also a strong focus on the words and teachings of Jesus, specifically on Jesus' claims about Himself. These claims are best known as the seven "I am" statements. John probably wrote this Gospel in Ephesus somewhere around 70 AD.

The Text:
John chapter five is another instance in which Jesus heals a man (v. 8) and another instance in which the Jews take Jesus' good work as an opportunity to persecute Jesus (v. 16). Many Jews (specifically the Pharisees) were upset at Jesus because of who He claimed to be. He claimed to be the Messiah, the Son of God, even God Himself and many of the Jews didn't like these claims. The pharisees prided themselves in their knowledge of the Scriptures. They had studied the scriptures their entire lives and believed that it was their knowledge of the Scriptures that gave them eternal life and brought them closer to the Father. Jesus is telling them that in all their studying of the Scriptures they missed the point. The whole point of the Scriptures is that they testify of Jesus, they testify of who He is. In rejecting Jesus they were rejecting the very thing in which they had placed their lives and their trust in, the Scriptures. They had studied the Scriptures, memorized them, and knew everything about them, but had never allowed the Word of the Father to live in their hearts. There was a lot of knowledge but no relationship. There was a lot of religion but no life.

The Challenge:
Remember it is all about Jesus! Without Him there is no life and no love. Without a relationship with Jesus there is no point to life, no purpose. There is no point to studying the Scriptures unless it is bringing you into a stronger relationship with Jesus. There is no point in praying unless it is pulling you closer to Him. It is all about Him! Which in turn means it is not about me.

The Prayer:
Lord, I do want to come into a closer relationship with you. Help me to focus my prayers and my time in the Word so that I can truly be brought closer to you. Help me to seek you with all my heart. I love you. In Jesus' name, Amen!

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