Archive for the ‘John’ Category

Jesus’ Deity “I am”

Posted: October 6, 2011 in John

John 13:1-15 reads,
Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father… 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… 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? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.

Before the last supper, Jesus decides to wash the feet of his disciples. He did this as an example, so that they would not think they were above serving. Soon after this Jesus will tell his disciples, “I am the way the truth and the life.” (English Standard Version 2008, 2054) What an amazing thing to take place. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things into His hands and that He alone was the only way to Heaven, yet He still chose to show us this great example of humility. He even chose to wash the feet of Judas, even though He knew Judas would betray Him for he said, “not all of you are clean.” (English Standard Version 2008, 2051) Jesus said that if He is “teacher and Lord” and He can wash feet, we should be even more willing to serve others. This washing also refers to our new standing with the Lord. Jesus said that if we already have had a bath, then we do not need to take another one. The Greek word for bathed is leloumenos (referring to the whole body being cleansed). This corresponds to our acceptance of the Lord Jesus Christ into out hearts. Jesus said, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean…” (English Standard Version 2008, 2051) The second Greek word referring to the washing of the feet is nipses (meaning “wash”). Elmer Towns wrote, “the first washing is once and for all (Heb. 10:1-12), but daily sin needs confession and cleansing (1 John 1:9).” (Towns 2002, 132) In other words, those who have accepted Jesus have already “bathed” they now need only to confess daily sins or “wash”. Our standing with God changes when we except Jesus Christ as the way, truth and life. We no longer experience judicial guilt (a sinner who stands guilty before God) when we sin, now we experience personal guilt (when a sinner is convicted of sin) that we should seek forgiveness for. Thus, we need to “wash” daily.
John 13:31-38 reads,
When he (Judas Iscariot) had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him… 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. 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. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” 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.” Peter said to him, “Lord, why can I not follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.” 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.

After Judas Iscariot had left the last supper, Jesus begins to tell the disciples that He is about to die. Jesus refers to this as being glorified, something that the disciples did not understand at this time. He leaves the disciples with the commandment “love one another”, something that John later echoed in his epistles. Simon Peter, the one who never really knew when to shut his mouth, told Jesus that he would be willing to go even to his own death to follow the Lord. Later, Peter would deny Jesus to a young girl.
John 14:1-7 reads,
Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” (Italics added)

Still in the same meeting, Jesus says one of the great “I am” saying being, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (English Standard Version 2008, 2052) This is my favorite “I am” statement. When I was a children’s director, I had a special project I called the fifth grade brigade. These children had to memorize several passages and maintain regular church attendance in order to stay in the program. One of the verses I had them memorize was John 14:6. I feel that this statement is Jesus’ greatest example of deity. The usage of “I am” is similar to the Greek translated Old Testament passages when God (Yahweh) is speaking. Leon Morris wrote, “ “I am” mostly represents the speech of the Heavenly Father or the Son (Jesus Christ).” (Morris 1989, 109)
When Jesus says, “I am the way,” that means that there cannot be another way. Not that Jesus somehow is showing us the way, but that he literally is the exclusive and only way. Some say that Christians are close-minded in believing this way, but Jesus does not give us another option. If the statement is to be translated literally, there is only one way to the Father, an exclusive way. If Jesus was a liar (or a lunatic) in saying that He was the only way to God, then we had better throw our Bibles away.
When Jesus said, “I am the truth,” it is saying that He is a reliable witness. He is showing His deity in saying that He is the only witness He needs to show the validity of His statements, though He is never the only witness. He is so closely tied with the Father that if we have seen him we have seen the Father, thus He is never alone in his witness. When questioned about His witness, Jesus told the Pharisees the following:
“Even if I do bear witness about myself, my testimony is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one. Yet even if I do judge, my judgment is true, for it is not I alone who judge, but I and the Father who sent me. In your Law it is written that the testimony of two people is true. I am the one who bears witness about myself, and the Father who sent me bears witness about me.”

When Philip said, “Show us the Father,” Jesus responded, “whoever has seen me has seen the Father,” another example of His deity. (English Standard Version 2008, 2040) The God of the Old Testament and Jesus are one.
When Jesus said, “I am the life,” it is along the same lines of saying, “I am the resurrection and the life.” Not only is the Jesus the way to life (eternal) and the truth about life (eternal and temporary) He is the life (eternal). God never needed anyone to exist; we need Him to exist. John 1:1-5 and 1 John 1-2 read,
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us.

This shows us Jesus’ deity in all of creation, which was made through Him. He is the life, and all life came about through Him. This “I am” to me is the most important and shows the most deity for Lord Jesus Christ.

ESV study Bible: English Standard Version.. ESV text ed. Wheaton: Crossway Bibles, 2008.

Elwell, Walter A.. Evangelical dictionary of biblical theology. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker
Books ;, 1996.

Morris, Leon. Jesus is the Christ: studies in the theology of John. Grand Rapids, Mich.: W.B.
Eerdmans Pub. Co. ;, 1989.

Towns, Elmer L.. Theology for today. 2nd ed. Lynchburg, Va.: Elmer Towns, 1994.

Towns, Elmer L.. The Gospel of John: believe and live. Turnhout: AMG Publishers, 2002.


Butting in

Posted: April 15, 2011 in Army, John

John 1:19-20,22-23
Now this was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was.

He (John the Baptist) did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Messiah.”…
Finally they (the religious leaders) said, “Who are you?
Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”
John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet,
“I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord.'”

John the Baptist was sent to tell people about the coming Messiah Jesus Christ. He ate some gross stuff and lived in the wilderness. His purpose in life was to tell people the good news about Jesus, and he also baptized allot of people. He was eventually beheaded by Pilate (see Matthew 14 or Mark 6:14-29) because he spoke the truth.

I remember a time when I had someone come up to me asking me some questions about God. He was drinking, but was concerned about his standing with the Lord. He said he knew there was a God, and that he knew he was on a one way course to Hell. I told him of the wrath that remained on him (something I would not do all of the time but he opened the door so I walked through it) and that Jesus offered forgiveness. He said he wanted to be a man and pay for his own sin. He was prideful, so prideful he wanted to do something he knew he could not do. Eventually some other people wanted to know what we were talking about, not to add in to the discussion, but to get some ammunition to talk behind my back later. Other times I have had conversations interrupted by soldiers who wanted to put their two cents in. You will always have those service members who do not like what you are doing, but they want to know what is going on anyways.

The Pharisees that went out to John were not going out there to see if they could receive Jesus, they were going out there to figure out who the heck this John thought he was. John was preaching a message of hope while the religious leaders were putting a yoke of slavery on their disciples. Look at what John said to the Pharisees and Sadducees in Matthew 3.

Matt 3:7-9
But when he (John the Baptist) saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham.

John called them Vipers because they were not looking for forgiveness or wanting to repent, they were coming out for the wrong reasons. You will probably have some people who come to your study or some people who will watch you that are not in it for the right reasons. They really do not want to know about God, they are just checking on what your up to.

What are you up to? are you in God’s camp, or just checking it out?

God loves you, He is with you, and He will never leave you.

Dan Fogarty

Jesus knows the Heart John 2:23-25
Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name. But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people. He did not need any testimony about mankind, for he knew what was in each person.

What Does a Good Person Look Like
There is a popular saying in the United States (and especially in the service) that if you are a ‘good person’ when you die God will accept you into His arms and you will enjoy a ‘good’ afterlife. Most people will tell you that they are in-fact a good person. I would like to discuss what ‘good’ really is in a biblical setting. Lets start off with the Ten Commandments.

Duet 5:6-21
“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery: “1.You shall have no other gods before me. “2.You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything. You shall not worship them; “3.You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. “4.Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, “5.Honor your father and your mother”6.You shall not murder.”7.You shall not commit adultery.”8.You shall not steal.”9.You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.”10.You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. You shall not set your desire on …anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

In the OT before Jesus came, these were the rules for a follower of God who wanted to be a ‘good’ person. If someone were to break one of these, God’s wrath would remain on him and he would have to offer some sort of sacrifice. Now, most of the ‘good’ people I know do not go to church on Sunday because it is there only day to sleep in (Sabbath #4), use the words God D&*$ it regularly (Name in Vain #3), would rather watch football and play with their fantasy stats more then hear about God (#1), work 60+ hours per week to make as much money as they can becoming a slave to it and practically worshiping it (#2), lie to their parents (#5), and the list could go on forever. Thank God Jesus came to make being good easier right? He died a horrible death on a cross so we could live free and do whatever we want right?….

Matt 5:17 Jesus on the law
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.”
Matt 5:21-22a on Murder
“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment. But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment.
Matt 5:27-28 on Adultery
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
Matt 5:31-32 on Divorce
“It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
Matt 5:38-39 on Revenge
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.
Matt 6:19-21 on Money
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

When Jesus came, he did not denounce the law or downplay it at all, if anything He elevated it and held His people to a higher standard, but He also made man realize that without the blood of Jesus nobody would be saved because it is literally impossible to keep the law. The only GOOD person who ever lived died on a tree for you so that you and I could have eternal life.

We must come to the conclusion that it impossible to be GOOD when we compare ourselves with God, and we must confess our sins and accept Jesus into our hearts so that we can be forgiven. Jesus has promised eternal life to those who follow Him (1 John 2:25).

Are you in need of forgiveness for sin? We all are, so you’re in good company. I feel like Paul often when he says he is the worst sinner (1 Tim 1:15). There is acceptance for you in Christ. Whatever you did, wherever you are, I am certain that Jesus can heal and restore you. If He can change me, He can change anyone!

John 2:13-17
The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there. And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. And he told those who sold the pigeons, “Take these things away; do not make my Father’s house a house of trade.” His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.”

Heres a scripture you do not see allot of people talking about! Most of the time when people talk about anger it is associated with something negative, and many times I am sure that is true… but there is a such thing as good anger when you are zealous for the right cause. Jesus walked into the temple and saw the money changers (14) and was furious! So furious he made a whip (15) and drove the money changers out of the Holy temple (15) turning over the money tables (15) and rebuking the sales people (16). Then His disciples remembered the scriptures and said, “ah yes!” Jesus has Zeal for His Fathers house!

Zeal in greek is translated ZELOS meaning:
excitement of mind, ardour, fervour of spirit
a) zeal, ardour in embracing, pursuing, defending anything
1) zeal in behalf of, for a person or thing
2) the fierceness of indignation, punitive zeal
b) an envious and contentious rivalry, jealousy

Jesus defends the house of God and we should to. So many times we see Christians just sit on their hands when they are asked tough questions…. I know I have done that before, just sat there and said nothing when I knew I should have defended the Gospel. Jesus was not a wimpy man, He was a mans man! He was a man who would stand up for what is right and do what it took to defend the Gospel (He was also fully God, which is awesome to think about!). Jesus had Zeal! We can to.

Another thing we see here is the disciples knew what was going on because they had read the Bible and memorized it! If they had not known the Bible, they would have thought Jesus was just throwing a tantrum, but they said, “AHAh! He has ZEAL for His Fathers house! It fires me up to think of Jesus as a warrior! That is what I wanna be like.

So, whats the point Dan?
We need to:
a. Get some ZEAL for the Father (and Jesus)
b. know the Bible

If we have zeal but don’t know why, were just confused. If we know the Bible but do nothing, were wimps! Jesus was not a wimp at all, He stood firm in the face of the evil that surrounded Him.

Lets be like the master
Matt 10:25a It is enough for the student to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master.

How do you let your anger out? Do you get angry for the right reasons? let me know, I have a hard time in this area to.. we can work it out together!

Jesus be glorified,
Dan Fogarty