John 13

John 13

13:1 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” 10 Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.” 11 For he knew who was to betray him; that was why he said, “Not all of you are clean.”

12 When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? 13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. 16 Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. 18 I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But the Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.’ 19 I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he. 20 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

21 After saying these things, Jesus was troubled in his spirit, and testified, “Truly, truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” 22 The disciples looked at one another, uncertain of whom he spoke. 23 One of his disciples, whom Jesus loved, was reclining at table at Jesus’ side, 24 so Simon Peter motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking. 25 So that disciple, leaning back against Jesus, said to him, “Lord, who is it?” 26 Jesus answered, “It is he to whom I will give this morsel of bread when I have dipped it.” So when he had dipped the morsel, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27 Then after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.” 28 Now no one at the table knew why he said this to him. 29 Some thought that, because Judas had the moneybag, Jesus was telling him, “Buy what we need for the feast,” or that he should give something to the poor. 30 So, after receiving the morsel of bread, he immediately went out. And it was night.

31 When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. 32 If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and glorify him at once. 33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You will seek me, and just as I said to the Jews, so now I also say to you, ‘Where I am going you cannot come.’ 34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

36 Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, where are you going?” Jesus answered him, “Where I am going you cannot follow me now, but you will follow afterward.” 37 Peter said to him, “Lord, why can I not follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.” 38 Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me? Truly, truly, I say to you, the rooster will not crow till you have denied me three times.

(ESV)

John 12

John 12

12:1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table. Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. Jesus said, “Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of my burial. For the poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me.”

When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there, they came, not only on account of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 So the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well, 11 because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and believing in Jesus.

12 The next day the large crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. 13 So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!” 14 And Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, just as it is written,


15   “Fear not, daughter of Zion;
  behold, your king is coming,
    sitting on a donkey’s colt!”

16 His disciples did not understand these things at first, but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written about him and had been done to him. 17 The crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to bear witness. 18 The reason why the crowd went to meet him was that they heard he had done this sign. 19 So the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the world has gone after him.”

20 Now among those who went up to worship at the feast were some Greeks. 21 So these came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and asked him, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.” 22 Philip went and told Andrew; Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus. 23 And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. 25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.

27 “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that stood there and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.” 30 Jesus answered, “This voice has come for your sake, not mine. 31 Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show by what kind of death he was going to die. 34 So the crowd answered him, “We have heard from the Law that the Christ remains forever. How can you say that the Son of Man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man?” 35 So Jesus said to them, “The light is among you for a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. The one who walks in the darkness does not know where he is going. 36 While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.”

When Jesus had said these things, he departed and hid himself from them. 37 Though he had done so many signs before them, they still did not believe in him, 38 so that the word spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:


  “Lord, who has believed what he heard from us,
    and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”

39 Therefore they could not believe. For again Isaiah said,


40   “He has blinded their eyes
    and hardened their heart,
  lest they see with their eyes,
    and understand with their heart, and turn,
    and I would heal them.”

41 Isaiah said these things because he saw his glory and spoke of him. 42 Nevertheless, many even of the authorities believed in him, but for fear of the Pharisees they did not confess it, so that they would not be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved the glory that comes from man more than the glory that comes from God.

44 And Jesus cried out and said, “Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who sent me. 45 And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness. 47 If anyone hears my words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day. 49 For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak. 50 And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I say, therefore, I say as the Father has told me.”

(ESV)

John 11

John 11

11:1 Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. It was Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent to him, saying, “Lord, he whom you love is ill.” But when Jesus heard it he said, “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.” The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now seeking to stone you, and are you going there again?” Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. 10 But if anyone walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.” 11 After saying these things, he said to them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I go to awaken him.” 12 The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.” 13 Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he meant taking rest in sleep. 14 Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, 15 and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” 16 So Thomas, called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”

17 Now when Jesus came, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. 18 Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off, 19 and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother. 20 So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary remained seated in the house. 21 Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” 23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” 27 She said to him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.”

28 When she had said this, she went and called her sister Mary, saying in private, “The Teacher is here and is calling for you.” 29 And when she heard it, she rose quickly and went to him. 30 Now Jesus had not yet come into the village, but was still in the place where Martha had met him. 31 When the Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary rise quickly and go out, they followed her, supposing that she was going to the tomb to weep there. 32 Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” 33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. 34 And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” 35 Jesus wept. 36 So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” 37 But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man also have kept this man from dying?”

38 Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” 44 The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

45 Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what he did, believed in him, 46 but some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. 47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the council and said, “What are we to do? For this man performs many signs. 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.” 49 But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all. 50 Nor do you understand that it is better for you that one man should die for the people, not that the whole nation should perish.” 51 He did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad. 53 So from that day on they made plans to put him to death.

54 Jesus therefore no longer walked openly among the Jews, but went from there to the region near the wilderness, to a town called Ephraim, and there he stayed with the disciples.

55 Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves. 56 They were looking for Jesus and saying to one another as they stood in the temple, “What do you think? That he will not come to the feast at all?” 57 Now the chief priests and the Pharisees had given orders that if anyone knew where he was, he should let them know, so that they might arrest him.

(ESV)

Saturday Study

Saturday Study

John 6-10 (1-12-19)

Grab your Bibles, and turn with me to the Gospel of John, chapter 9.

Jesus is in Jerusalem, and He engages a blind man who has been born blind and who has been reduced to being a beggar on the street. Jesus heals the man and gives him sight in an unprecedented miracle. So, the man can see for the first time in his life. What a moment. What a miracle.

Have you seen the videos that are out there where someone is given hearing aids that allow them to hear for the first time or a surgery or glasses that allows them to see for the first time? It’s overwhelming. It’s tearful. It’s powerful and beautiful. To witness someone see or hear life and loved ones for the first time ever … Imagine that. You don’t know what their voices sounds like or what they actually look like, and you see someone’s face connected to his or her voice. This is a truly amazing miracle that utterly changed this man’s life like nothing else ever did.

Now, John’s testimony reveals that the man’s neighbors are trying to figure out how this happened–how this man they know who is blind can now see. So, he goes through an interrogation with his neighbors, and then he is brought to the Pharisees, who are supposed to render help and lead and direct him; however, they don’t care about him. They are only concerned with what he claims Jesus did, because they believe that Jesus is a demon-possessed counterfeit.

So, the Pharisees reject the testimony of the man, they reject the testimony of the neighbors, and they go looking to his parents. The parents are so afraid of looking like they favor Jesus that they turn their back on the healed man. Then the Pharisees end up throwing the man who can now see out of the building. By doing so, they are really throwing him out of the life of the nation–out of the life of Israel.

This man has already been an outcast his entire life, because anybody who was born blind was believed to have been cursed by God for sin. His own family hasn’t taken him in, as we see him begging in the streets. He is finally able to do life, work a job, interact with people, and have new kinds of relationships, yet all he receives is harassment, skepticism, and rejection. His neighbors, his parents, and his spiritual leaders all reject him. In his highest moment in life, there is no celebration, no reception … just rejection.

What a metaphor of this world. Our world is masterful at using us for selfish gain. And when those in the world get what, they want they toss us aside. Also, it’s great imagery that you can get all you ever dreamed of in this life and still be so far from satisfied. This world is fleeting. The highest highs and the greatest prizes are fleeting–momentary. Literally. Your dream car wears out. Your big pay check is spent. Your favorite meal is consumed. Your vacation is over. Your most loved ones pass away. Your favorite team’s winning run eventually ends. Your good looks fade. It is all fleeting.

Here is the good news. Chapter 9 doesn’t end here. It doesn’t end with ridicule and rejection and estrangement. No–light and hope break into the scene. Jesus enters the scene, and in verse 35 we read this:

 John 9:35 Jesus heard that they had cast him out, and having found him …

First, notice that Jesus pursued the man. He heard the Pharasee’s cast him out, and Jesus knew it was time to find him. Jesus’ desire to find this man wasn’t because He heard they cast him out. Christ’s desire to find and save the man was an eternal, predestined desire. It was just finally time to do it. Brothers and sisters, don’t ever stop praying for and witnessing to your lost loved ones, neighbors, and enemies. Why? Because you don’t know if and/or when God has determined to set them free. Sometimes He has planned for us to hit the bottom of our sin and lostness before He shines the light of life into our lives!

Jesus sought him out. Do you really understand the weight of this proclamation? When you and I were lost in our fleeting pursuit of the world’s treasures and joys instead of His deserving glory, Jesus sought us out. He put on flesh, He came down to our level, He did what we couldn’t do and wouldn’t do, and He paid for our freedom. He paid for it with His own blood.

This is the good news of gracious acceptance. This man had done nothing to earn Jesus’ favor–His pursuit. Jesus is the initiator. He is the spouse who is faithful to His bride when she wants nothing to do with Him. He comes, He finds us, and He gives us saving faith. This is what happens next:

John 9:35 Jesus heard that they had cast him out, and having found him he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”

Do you believe in the Son of Man? This is a known title for the Redeemer, the Messiah, the promised One. In asking him this, Jesus is cutting into the man’s worldview with the greatest point of emphasis He could give him. He didn’t say, “Do you want me to show you how to make the most of your new sight? I see you are a rejected outcast. Do you want me to train you how to have lots of friends and how to be successful at life?”  No. Why didn’t He? Because all of that leads to damnation and eternal suffering if not saved and set free by Jesus. This is why Jesus asking about the man’s believing in the Son of Man is the greatest question He could ask.

If you are reading this today hoping for the remedy to an issue in your life, the answer is Jesus! It’s not a practice, a relationship, a drug, a job, a pay raise, a new whatever. It is Jesus!

See what Jesus is doing here: He’s going in for the kill. He is going in for the one thing that will save this man. That he dies.

Dies to himself and believes his life into Jesus’ hands.

John 9:36 He [the man] answered, “And who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?”

What made him want to trust Jesus? What made him so hungry to know the One Jesus was speaking of? Gut? A hunch? He got a good feeling from Jesus? A good vibe? 

Really, I am truly asking this. What made him say to essentially a stranger, “Who is he, sir, so that I can believe in him?”    Regeneration! God is literally doing heart surgery on this man. The heart of stone is being removed, and the heart of flesh is being given. Even better, his spiritual blindness is being removed, and he is being given eyes to see. Look:

 John 9:37 Jesus said to him, “You have seen him, and it is he who is speaking to you.”

Jesus is saying, “With the eyes you now have, you are looking at the Son of Man–the promised One.” The greatest gift you could be given is not that you see with your physical eyes; it is that you now see with spiritual eyes! And what evidence do we have of this conversion? Of this new birth?

 John 9:38 He said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him.

He didn’t call Jesus “sir,” like he did just moments before when he didn’t know who Christ was. Now he knows! He calls Jesus “Lord.” Jesus is his LORD! He professes his belief. And that belief, that knowing Jesus as God the Son as Master, causes him to worship Christ.

You don’t have a two-sentence conversation with a stranger and then call Him “Lord” and worship Him as God! The man knows Him. He doesn’t just know about Jesus; he now knows Him! Jesus is his Lord!

He worshiped Jesus! Do you remember John 4:20-24? “The Father seeks true worshipers who worship Him in spirit and truth.” How do you know when someone is a believer? Because he becomes a true worshiper of Jesus. Believers give up their lives for the sake of the Lord their God. They bow down, no longer to idols or to try to rule on the throne themselves. They bow down to God as Lord of their lives and worship Him with all they are.

Now, notice this: In a crowd of unbelief, the outcast is brought in. Not just to a temporary group of friends of family, but into the courts of God almighty–into the eternal family of God!!!! DON’T MISS THIS! The miracle of this man’s life is not sight after a lifetime of blindness; it is salvation after a lifetime of sin, and the reversal of an eternity of damnation unto an eternity of joy in the presence of God Himself.

Don’t settle for temporary joys. Enjoy them. Praise God for them, but don’t settle for them. Don’t long for them. What if Jesus never sought this man out? What would he have gained? Sight for living, no more begging, the ability to work and thrive in this life? Yes, but for what? For fleeting joys, and then an eternity in hell.

“For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?” Mark 8:36

CS Lewis said, “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

Jesus gave the man the greatest gift he could ever receive–the greatest miracle of this life! Saving Faith! Regeneration. Belief in Jesus as the Son of God.

John 9:39 Jesus said, “For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind.”

This is the climactic statement of Jesus in the wake of this man’s conversion. Why? Because we have seen belief and unbelief in this one situation and interaction since being introduced to this blind man in John 9:1. While Jesus did not come to judge, His presence brings judgment. The light of the world has a double effect. It illuminates some unto life, and it brings condemnation and exposure to those who remain in the darkness. It convicts and brings judgment to the guilty, and it converts and brings life to the elect. IT’S ONE OR THE OTHER. We see the same thing at the cross of Jesus.

1 Corinthians 1:18 For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:23-24 but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

John 3:3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

1 Corinthians 2:14 The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

Jesus says here, “… that those who do not see may see [sight is given to the spiritually blind–this is regeneration, salvation]

and those who see may become blind [those who think they have all the needed capacities to thrive in life are in the end spiritually blind, and therefore lacking the most important capacity of all.]”

Now, the Pharisees must have been close enough to hear this conversation between the man and Jesus.

Listen to what they ask:

John 9:40-41 Some of the Pharisees near him heard these things, and said to him, “Are we also blind?” Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.”

They just saw this man that they rejected and cast out receive Jesus as Lord and worship Him. Then they heard Jesus say clearly that He has come to judge and that those who see become blind. So they are thinking, “We see. Does that mean we are now blind?” What is this in reference to? Jesus will explain later in John’s Gospel, chapter 15, but let me show it to you now:

John 15:22-25 “If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have been guilty of sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. Whoever hates me hates my Father also. If I had not done among them the works that no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin, but now they have seen and hated both me and my Father. But the word that is written in their Law must be fulfilled: They hated me without a cause.’”

Pastor John MacArthur recounted the teachings of the Scriptures well on this topic saying, “Throughout the whole Bible, blindness is used metaphorically to represent the human condition of corruption and fallen-ness, and the inability to comprehend God and divine truth.”

In Isaiah 43:8, we read of the people who are blind even though they have eyes.

In Jeremiah 5:21, we read of the people who are foolish and senseless; they have eyes but do not see.

In Isaiah 56:10, the corrupt leaders of Israel are described as watchmen who are blind, all of whom see nothing.

Jesus called the Pharisees blind men, and then He called them blind guides.

All sinners, says the apostle Paul in Ephesians 4, are darkened in their understanding.

In John 3, our Lord said that sinners love the darkness rather than the light, because they cherish their evil deeds.

Revelation 3:17 defines the world of sinners as wretched, naked, miserable, poor, and blind.

So, the Bible speaks of blindness as a metaphor for spiritual ignorance, spiritual darkness, spiritual corruption, and the inability to know God or to know the truth. That natural blindness, because of sin, is compounded by Satan’s power and deception, which makes a kind of double-blindness, spoken of in 2 Corinthians 4:4: “… the god of this world, Satan, has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” Naturally blinded and satanically blinded.

There is also reference in the Scriptures to God’s divine hand in the blindness of the reprobate. Isaiah said in Isaiah 44:18, “They know not, nor do they discern, for he has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand.”

In John 12:39-40, we will read that those who persist in unbelief cannot believe because, as Isaiah said, “He has blinded their eyes, hardened their hearts, that they would not see, perceive, and be converted.”

Paul wrote of this judgment in Romans 11:8: “God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes to see not and ears to hear not, down to this very day.”

This is hard reality.

-Natural blindness is damning.

-Compounded satanic blindness is even more damning.

-Terminal blindness is a judgment of the sovereign God and is the removal of all hope.

According to Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, sinners walk in the ways of darkness.

According to Isaiah 5:20, they substitute light for darkness and darkness for light.

According to Ephesians 5:11, the whole world is full of people who participate in the unfruitful works of darkness because, as Colossians 1:13 says, they are part of the domain of darkness. Blindness and darkness are metaphors for the condition of sinners.

This is a sobering clarity. Those who were the ones rejecting–rejecting the man, rejecting Jesus, rejecting the miracle–are now rejected. They are guilty. They will be cast out.

Spiritual blindness, then, receives judgment! It refuses to admit its blindness; it rejects truth. And it results in doom. Look at the end of verse 41: “Jesus said to them, ‘If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, “We see,” your guilt remains.’”

He is saying, “You are blind in the sense that you don’t see your own sin. You are not blind in the sense that you have been exposed to the truth. You have the law, the prophets, the covenants–everything. You have the promises, the Old Testament. You’ve had Me. You’ve heard My words. You’ve seen the miracles. So, you have no excuse.”

Yes, you are blind to your own sin; but no, you are not blind to the truth. Therefore, you are judged. You are doomed. You are hopeless. Your guilty position remains.

If you are still with me, hear this: Religion is not enough. Knowing truth is not enough. It must turn into love for the Lord. Temporary victories are not enough. The world’s treasure and pleasures are not enough.

Only Jesus can fulfill us. Worship for Him. Surrender to Him. Hail Him as KING!

Serve Him with all of your life! Or you remain in judgment and condemnation.

By His grace and for His glory,

Pastor Joshua Kirstine

Disciples Church

John 10

John 10

10:1 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” This figure of speech Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.

So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. 17 For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.”

19 There was again a division among the Jews because of these words. 20 Many of them said, “He has a demon, and is insane; why listen to him?” 21 Others said, “These are not the words of one who is oppressed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”

22 At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23 and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon. 24 So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

31 The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. 32 Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?” 33 The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.” 34 Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I said, you are gods’? 35 If he called them gods to whom the word of God came—and Scripture cannot be broken—36 do you say of him whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? 37 If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; 38 but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.” 39 Again they sought to arrest him, but he escaped from their hands.

40 He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing at first, and there he remained. 41 And many came to him. And they said, “John did no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true.” 42 And many believed in him there.

(ESV)