A review and preview of the glorious gospel of Jesus
Good morning as we approach again uh this morning, our study of john having been away from it now for six or seven weeks. What I thought I would do is give us a review of what we have seen and a and a preview of what is coming because john gives us a a beautiful picture. He he lays out beautifully for us the identity of christ and the mission of christ Through the seven signs. And then of course the IMF statements that Jesus makes in this great book. But he also gives us a truer understanding, a true understanding of who man is. As we see the conversations in the dark with Nicodemus and then his interactions and conflicts with the Pharisees with the priests, with the scribes. And so as we are going through this book, we have this this linear teaching of who jesus is from sign to sign from I am statement to I am statement, but then we also have this this circular teaching throughout this book to remind us to reveal to us and to confirm to us that the mission of christ is to take the enemies of God and to make them the Children of God. That is to find that which is lost to save it and then to make us worshippers of him who would worship him in spirit and in truth. And so in in terms of review and preview, Turn to John Chapter 1: verse # one now in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God and he was in the beginning with God right there he is making a monumental statement that he is equal to God. He is not after the beginning, it was not God. And then jesus, the second person of the trinity has always been, he was in the beginning with God and everything was made through him and without him was not anything made that was made in him was life and that life was the light of men and the light shines in the darkness and the darkness does not overcome it. So right at the very beginning, we find that jesus is presented as the creative logos of God. He is the logos and he is, he is presented as the creator of everything equal to God. Now what has he come to create? If john goes to these kinds of pains, if Jon makes this great statement about the logos and everything was made by him and then repeats that by saying everything was made and nothing was made apart from him, then the question is obvious. The question is built in to the opening statement, What has he come to create Verse # 12 of that chapter he says. And to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave them the right to become Children of God. So the logos, the word of God, the information of God. The understanding of God. The creative logos of God, that word that creates has come to create of men, Children of God, men and women of course. And anyone who will believe and receive him to make of them Children of God. Now the rest of this great book is to tell us how he accomplishes that, why it is needed and how he accomplishes it. We see the next step in verse number 14 and we have uh and the word became flesh and dwelt among us and we have seen his glory as the Only Son from the Father Full of Grace and truth. Now, it is an interesting word there that john uses to talk of his dwelling with us. It means to dwell with us, but it simultaneously means to Tabernacle with us. It is, it is the the greek equivalent of the old testament word too Tabernacle with us. So in that in in the creative word coming to make us Children of God. The first thing that he tells us is is that he has come to Tabernacle with us to dwell with us and he comes Tabernacle ng with us Full of grace and truth. We go on to read there in verse number 16 right. And the word became flesh and dwelt among us. And we have seen his glory. Glory as of the Only Son from the Father Full of Grace and truth. Now from this fullness, we have all received grace upon grace for the law was given through moses. But grace and truth came through jesus christ No one has ever seen God, the only God who is at the father’s side. He has come to make him known. So the logos has come and he has come in his creative capacity. The, the logos, all of the information of God, any information that can be known about God is contained in him and in him alone, he is the logos and the logos with all of that information has come in his creative capacity to make of men and women, Children of God. And the way that he does this according to john, is he tabernacles with us? And and in that Tabernacle, he is full of grace and truth. And then we have received Grace upon grace, Grace and truth. And then Grace and Grace and Grace and grace. Truth about who God is and truth about who we are. Truth about, about the fallen nous of man, that the self delusion of man and truth about the desire of God, not for judgment, but for grace, not for destruction, but for creation. Now, how is he going to bring this to pass? Well, john in this chapter, in this opening chapter, revealing to us who jesus is now turns his attention to john the baptist and toward the end of that chapter, in verse number 29 we we see john uh in his ministry and then in verse number 29 it says on the next day, he that is john the baptist saw jesus coming toward him and he said behold the lamb of God, that takes away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said after me, comes one who ranks before me because he was before me. Now, you, you you already begin to see the great logic of the gospel. You begin to see the great love of the Father. You begin to see the purpose of jesus mission. There is a Tabernacle and the Tabernacle is full of grace and truth. And the ugly truth about man is is that he is not only sinful, but he has filled the world with sin. There is none who is clean, all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Now, if you have a Tabernacle, that that that old testament meeting place with God, you need to remember the purpose of the Tabernacle when when, when God had rescued the people from Egypt and he was bringing them on their way to the promised land. When moses had gone up on the mountain to meet with God, the people at the, at the foot of the mountain began to rebel. They wanted to worship God in their own way and their abhorrent worship became abhorrent activity. And then and then abhorrent morality and abhorrent ethics and then just pure evil and moses came down the mountain, you remember and he was angry and he, he broke the tablets made of stone and then he ascended back up the mountain and he heard God make the declaration that he was going to start over with moses. He was going to destroy these people. And yet moses interceded. He gave that great prayer of intercession, picturing the coming of christ, picturing the grace of what christ would do. And God said, okay, here’s what I want you to do. I want you to go down and I want you to make a tent of meeting a tent of meeting where, where, where those who have rebelled might repent and meet with me. So now you have jesus coming as the Tabernacle. Well, the Tabernacle needs a sacrifice that is sufficient to turn repentance into recreation. And so john says that john, the gospel writer says he has come to Tabernacle with us and full not of the judgment, the destructive judgment of God, but full of grace and truth about man, that he is in need of God because he has filled the world with sin and truth about God. He has come as the lamb to be sacrificed in that Tabernacle to take away the sins of the world. That’s awesome, right? And we, we, we we we are beginning to see that that that that jesus is his mission is to come and to be received in the Tabernacle as a substitute for our sins by grace. Then we move on to chapter two and Chapter two seems to be an odd beginning To revealing the ministry or the activity of Christ. In Chapter one. We we have revealed the mission. We we have revealed the coming. We we have revealed to us the the identity of Christ. And then beginning with Chapter two, we have the activity of Christ. And John begins at a wedding, a wedding in a town called Canna and a wedding in a town called Canna where the bride groom has has insufficient supply for the people who have arrived and this will bring upon this bride groom great dishonor. So much so that that that it may bring upon him uh dishonor for the rest of his life. Maybe even uh some form of excommunication or expulsion or at least uh separation. It would be a great dishonor not to have the supply that is needed for for for the need that is in front of him. And you remember Jesus’s mother says help him. And and and jesus says, woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come. Nevertheless Jesus acts, his mother says to the servants do whatever he says. And you remember he called for six water pots, they filled them full of water and jesus turned the water into wine and not just wine, but the good wine the best possible. So where resource was absolutely lacking, jesus not only supplies the need, but he supplies it with the best possible product. And you have stated in verse # nine of that chapter. When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, he did not know where it came from, though the servants who drew the water knew right. The master of the feast called the bridegroom And said to him, everyone serves the good wine 1st and when the people have drunk freely, then the poor wine, but you have kept the good wine until now you see what normally happened in that day is you know, people would be traveling to a to a wedding. It’s not like they can just hop into their cars like we do. And and when the richest people, the people with the most leisure time, the people who could get away whenever they would arrive, the master of the feast, the bridegroom, the one who was bringing the supply or or providing the supply, would bring the best wine first for the high muckety mucks for the rich, for the, for the socially elite, but the master here the feast, the one who is carrying out the tasks for the bride groom is surprised because now here comes six full large water jugs full of not just wine, but good wine, the good wine, and it is for everyone when those slaves that could get away with the poor who who had no means of travel other than their own feet whenever the the last of, of those who would arrive had arrived and they would have the best. And the master of the feast does not know where the wine comes from. So he attributes the honor of that wine to the bride groom. And it gives us again a picture of what christ has come to do. Man lacks the supply that is needed for the need that is in front of him. And jesus not only meets it, he meets it with the best possible product there is, and not only that we see as the master of the feast speaks to the bride groom, the Conor rightly belongs to jesus, but Jesus lets it fall to the bride groom. He gives merit an honor. He gives his merit and honor to another. What a foreshadowing, we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. And when we get to it, in john chapter 17 and that great high priestly prayer, Jesus says, the glory that you have given to me, I have given to them, so that we who fall short of glory, we receive his, that we might be received by the father, not only as safe and sound, but as his Children. The next story in check or two is all about the destruction that comes upon the temple. You remember jesus, the next story we see jesus is cleansing the temple on, on on the high day, he is overturning the money tables, He is proclaiming that they’ve turned his father’s house a place that should be a house of prayer into a place of of exchange and exchange. That does not bring benefit to man, but causes burden upon men and so and so he cleanses the temple and when and when the leaders of the temple come and say who gives you the right to do this. He he claims that he is equal to God and then he tells them this, destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it again In verse number 19, destroy this temple. In three days I will raise it up and the jew says, it has taken us 46 years. It took 46 years to build this temple and you will raise it again in three days And then verse # 30, but he was speaking of the temple of his body and when therefore he was raised from the dead. The disciples remembered that he had said this, they believed the scriptures that jesus had spoken. So you see at the beginning of Chapter two, he gives honor to someone who does not deserve it. And at the end of Chapter two, he takes the destruction to himself and he says, I will build a new temple. So I want you to see something here. The logos of God. All the information about God that can be known is in him and he comes as the creative logos of God and he has come in his creative capacity with this great truth to make of God’s enemies God’s Children. He does this by Tabernacle, ng and filling the Tabernacle with grace and truth. Then he becomes the lamb to be sacrificed in the Tabernacle that we might meet with God. And then he takes the merit of that sacrifice and he gives it to us and the destruction that is do us, he takes against himself. And by that destruction becomes the temple where God might dwell with us. You see the Tabernacle was called the meeting place, the temple, the dwelling place of God. What a glorious thing. What a glorious opening to the chapter or to this great book. What what a glorious revealing of of the work that that christ has going on. Now, once the curse and its corresponding penalty is removed, new birth enables us to become the Children of God. That’s what he speaks about in chapter three verse number three, jesus answered truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he can not become, unless one is born again. He cannot see the kingdom of God. How jesus will bring this about to make us the Children of God is, he will give us a brand new life. Everything from the old life is gone, and a new life is given to us that we might become the Children of God and this new life. This new position that we have is not through our merit, but through belief in his merit given to us on behalf of God’s love alone, Verse 16 of that great chapter for God, so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son. That whosoever believes in him should not perish but have ever lasting life. Then we move on to chapter four and you have that conversation with the woman at the well, the woman whose life had been who had been ruined by her own action by the actions of others. Woman who thought that she had no hope. A woman who had been separated not only from God, but from mankind. She doesn’t even know where to worship God. Your father say to worship on this place and our father say to worship in this place. And jesus says listen, the hour is coming and is now here when true worshipers will worship the father in spirit and in truth for the father is seeking such people to worship him. God is a spirit. And those who worship him must worship him in spirit. And truth, God doesn’t dwell in a temple made with hands anymore. I am the temple, I am the meeting place with God, he is saying and she says, I know the messiah is coming, who is called the christ and when he comes, he will tell us all things and jesus said I who speak to you am he, you see he becomes that sustaining water, drink this water and you’ll never thirst again. We have new life and then he gives us what is needed to sustain that new life, He gives us the meeting place with God that meets us, where we are rather than us trying to figure out. Is that on that mountain? Is that on this mountain? Is that in this river? Is it on that river? Is that on this plane? Is it on that plane? God is just here He is Emmanuel God with us. He’s the Tabernacle, the meeting place with God where the lamb is slain and he is the dwelling place of God that sustains the new birth that he provides for us. In chapter five, jesus says that he is equal to God and he knows what no man can know and he does what no man can do. My father is working and my father is working until now and I am working. Chapter five verse number 17, Right, showing his equality with God, Verse # 27 of that chapter and he has given authority to me to execute judgment because he is the son of God. Right? There’s no difference in the person’s of God the father and God The son. If jesus is dwelling with us, God is dwelling with us. If jesus receives us, God has received us. If we received jesus, we have received God, he’s the logos, he is the word, he’s the author of the word. He’s the subject of the word. He’s the authenticator of the word, He’s the authority of the word and not only in chapter five do we see that there is no difference between between God and christ. He also tells us that there’s no difference amongst men, the highest of the high need him and the lowest of the low need him, and jesus will receive them all, any who believe. And then chapter six, he’s the one who not only gives us life and sustains that life, But makes that life abundant and wonderful as hell as he’ll go on to say in Chapter 10, I have come to give you life and life more abundantly. He gives us the provision to sustain our strength. And he tells us in this chapter after, after feeding the people bread, he tells them now you must eat my flesh and drink my blood. And it seems to go against that that that that that that that that that declaration of God in the old testament not to drink the blood of any animal, not to eat the fat of any animal. But now jesus is coming along and he says, listen, if you are going to be my disciple, you must, if you’re going to be a child of God, you must eat my flesh and drink my blood. Listen to verse 51 of chapter six, I am the living bread, come down from heaven. If anyone eats this bread, he will live forever and the bled bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh. The jews then disputed amongst themselves saying, how can this man give us his flesh to eat? And jesus said to them truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up again the last day, for my flesh is true food and my blood is true, drink whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him, you see that prohibition in the old testament not to eat the fat, not to drink the blood. It was because God didn’t want us to act like a goat or a sheep or a cow. We weren’t made to act like animals and life is in the blood and and and and the sacrifice was intended to be bitter. It was intended to be eaten with bitter herbs so that we would know the bitter nature of our sin, the bitter nature of our separation from God, But now he says, eat my flesh, drink my blood. You are to be like me. You see, you see, life is in the blood. I don’t want you to drink the blood of bulls and goats, because I don’t want you to act like an animal. You’re you’re not intended to be an animal or to act like an animal. I created you in my image and I have sent my son now to recreate you and to put his life within you. That you might act like him, that you might be like him. And so we have the satisfaction of eating that flesh and drinking that blood and becoming like him. Then in Chapter seven, he is with us all along the way. He not only is the water that sustains our life, he is, he is the flesh that that gives us strength to live properly. And then he’s with us so that we don’t fall back so that we don’t, we we don’t fail in our task as we are walking forward. In Chapter seven, a dispute arises whether he is a good man or whether he is leading the people astray and he says, I am the water, I am the water that produces life and out of you will will flow springs of living water just as sin has passed from man to man. Now faith to faith, true change can take place through our lives, in our lives, through our lives by our lives. We find purpose meaning hope in these verses And then we move on to chapter eight In Minne # 12. Woman caught in adultery and the people want him to make a judgment, You see they are the people, the leaders are wanting him to make a judgment. You see, he has said he is equal with God. He has told him to eat the flesh and drink the blood. And now they’re wanting to to to to get him on a very specific law from the old testament that they might that they might find him guilty. That they might that they might show that he is leading the people astray and not a good man. The argument from Chapter seven and they say Moses says that this woman should be stoned. What say you and you all know the story, Jesus writes in the sand. I have no idea what he wrote, but I know it calls those who held the rocks in their hands to stand in judgment that they dropped their rocks. And then jesus in verse number 12 says, I am the light of the world and he who walks in me shall not walk in darkness. It seems odd. It seems there that he would say, I’m the judge. It seems there, he might say I’m the savior, right? But he doesn’t. He says, I’m the lie. What is he talking about? Why? That strange segue? You see, they wanted him to deal with a single issue whether this woman should be stoned or not. And he says, listen, I’ve come to do something far greater than that. I have come to be the light of the world. And and and and not only the light of the world, the light for men, that if they walk in me, they’ll they’ll no longer walk in darkness, I’m the one that can come and change the moral darkness within a person to the light of God. You see, I can deal not with the symptom, but with the problem. What, what, what, what has brought this woman? What has caused this woman? What desire in this woman has led her to commit adultery? You know, a lot of times we think about this story and we and we think about the man who’s not there, but the woman actually committed adultery and jesus is in no way um dismissing her sin. What he is saying is I can replace the darkness within her with the light of the world that we might live. Not merely exist, not just scrabble along, not not just go from situation to situation and symptom to symptom and find some kind of temporary relief. I have come to be the answer. The tag Tabernacle, where we can meet with God and a sacrifice acceptable to God is made, where we might be adopted by God, and then to be the temple where we might where where we might dwell with God and and God will give us the, the sustaining water of life and give us the strength of his flesh. His life within us that we might live, has lied in a world of darkness. This is the great hope of the gospel of john and we’ve seen the tree, or at least part of it, and in the next coming weeks we’ll begin to look at the branches and the leaves and the fruit. But today, I ask you, do you have that, like, and are you walking in, brother, I think.