Many scholars have called the raising of Lazarus, Jesus’s seventh sign and last public sign, the climax of Jesus’s ministry and the greatest of His public signs. In this chapter, John is preparing the reader for the cornerstone of our faith in Jesus Christ, which is the resurrection of the dead. We cannot have Christianity without the resurrection, and there cannot be resurrection without Jesus having authority over death.
In this chapter, Jesus tells us that it is for judgment He came into this world and that those who think they see will become blind. But what does Jesus mean by judgment?
Paul talks a lot about the sons of faith and being the spiritual father of some. What he is describing is the discipleship relationship. The analogy of sonship is common in the New Testament. A son is one who is in Christ and is adopted into the family of God.
As Jesus continues to teach from the temple during the Feast of Tabernacle, He interacts with religious unbelief. We learn from John 8:30-31 that some have proclaimed faith in Jesus. The life of a true believer will bear forth the fruit of repentance. While some profess faith in Christ, others confess faith in Him. This passage in John helps us discern between profession and confession. Earlier in this book, we read how some professed faith in Jesus as King, trying to forcibly crown Him. However, these people did not confess Him as Savior and Lord. John writes his gospel with the purpose of proving that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, so that we might believe, and in believing, that we might have life through His name, not just professing but confessing Him as Lord.
It probably took Noah 75-100 years to build the Ark. Even though God was sorry He made man, Noah found grace in His eyes. Noah preached, but no one turned to God. If any of them came to God, even in the last hour, they would have received God’s grace.Grace is unmerited favor from heaven, something offered to us that we don’t deserve.
In today's world, with computer-generated images and photo editing applications, seeing is no longer believing. But in Jesus’ day there was no photoshopping. When we look back into the Old Testament, the children of Israel literally saw God take them out of Egypt through the use of 10 plagues, then they saw the parting of the Red Sea. They saw, witnessed, and participated in these events, and yet, there was unbelief. As we read the Gospel of John, remember that John was an eye-witness of what we are reading. The Jews also saw Jesus’ miraculous works, yet they didn’t believe it.
John introduces the reader to Nicodemus, a Pharisee, in John 3:1-2. The name Nicodemus is a common, proper Greek name in history, and during the time of Jesus, it was also a common, popular Jewish name. The Pharisees were a sect of the Sanhedrin, the highest-ranking Jewish school of the time.
One of the most fundamental questions a Christian must ask is "what constitutes true belief?" How do I know if my own or someone else's belief is genuine or sincere? Do I have enough faith?
The earliest of the five books written by the Apostle John, the gospel of John was written primarily to a Greek-speaking, Jewish audience, highly influenced by the Greek culture. Most of the people in John’s audience would have been unsaved, needing to hear the good news of Jesus Christ. John omits many of the words, parables, actions, and miracles of Jesus which the other three gospels include. John’s themes are different than the other gospel writers. The material in chapters 1-5 of the book of John is unique and not found in the other gospels. The healing miracles in chapters 9 and 11 are also exclusive to John. Similarities between the book of John and the other three gospels include the Spirit's anointing of Christ, Jesus feeding the five thousand, Jesus walking on water, Jesus’s sonship to the Father, and Jesus’s authority over nature to name a few.
The majority of the New Testament writings begin and end with the mention of help from heaven in the form of grace that comes to us by the Spirit of God. Grace saves us, and it is grace that consistently changes us through the glorious agony of sanctification as we live our everyday lives. When grace is our tutor unto Christlikeness, whether things are good or bad, we are pressed to forget those things which are behind and to move forward unto the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. We pursue Christ, allowing His grace to mold us into His image.
Sometimes we endure great difficulty, and like Job, we need to come to the realization that when considering God, some things are too wonderful for us to comprehend (Job 42:3), and that the end, or purpose, of the Lord is always mercy and compassion (James 5:11).
Today we will study sincere, unfeigned faith and how Timothy lived out this sincere faith that was modeled by his grandmother and mother.
Most Christians are enduring some level of difficulty at any given point in their life. The story of Job offers us wisdom in how to endure crisis and calamity in a godly way.
Job is a book of wisdom. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 9:10). Wisdom is not merely knowledge. Wisdom is living the knowledge of God’s will, being able to apply what we know. The genuinely saved person longs to know the will of God and perseveres in living it. Job 1:1 describes Job as blameless and upright, fearing God and turning away from evil, giving us a brief description of the person of Job and his character.
Spirit-filled people who are walking with God love and protect the church. Paul calls the Corinthians alongside to help protect their own congregation.
2 Corinthians 8:7-8 discusses the position of a believer. As they are grown by grace, they will exhibit a series of virtues, of which giving is the last that Paul lists. These virtues work together and are only the result of God's work. Paul compliments the Corinthians and assumes they will keep growing.
Women were not given a respected place in first-century culture. The Bible gives them an equal spiritual standing as illustrated by many examples. Jesus' public ministry especially highlighted the spiritual place He gave women. Women listened to Christ, followed Him, were healed by Him, and served as examples of being and making disciples. Women are essential influencers within God's community of the local church.
God places us in each of our specific contexts for an eternal purpose (1 Corinthians 12:18, Matthew 28:19-20).
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