When Jesus’ dear friends find their brother deathly ill, they send for him to come and heal him. Jesus delays in order to do a more magnificent and glorious work through Lazarus’ death than through his healing. Before many witnesses, Jesus reveals himself to be the one who can bring the dead to life and invites each of us to believe he is the resurrection and the life. The resurrection of Lazarus is a clear symbol of the work Jesus carried out by dying a substitutionary death on the cross. To save Lazarus he, willingly walks into enemy territory to surrender his own life, also securing eternal life for all of God’s children.
This week we are pleased to welcome guest preacher, Pastor Doug Payne.
In John 9, the disciples, confused by the suffering of a man born blind from birth, ask Jesus, whose sin caused the man's blindness. Jesus' answer directs the disciples not to the cause but the purpose of the man's blindness. Jesus teaches us that our suffering is not meaningless. In everything that happens to us, God has a purpose and a desire to bring glory to his Name through either our deliverance or by supplying sustaining grace that keeps us trusting and satisfied in Jesus.
We pick up this morning in John chapter 8 in the midst of a scandalous conversation between Jesus and his hearers in the temple. This conversation quickly escalate such that the crowds hurl insults and slurs at Jesus and He very plainly tells them, you can’t receive me or my words because of your spiritual paternity. And interspersed throughout the conversation, Jesus shares several incredible glorious truths about himself and what He is offering them (and us), nothing less than freedom from sin, safety from death and eternal life.
Jesus does not merely reflect light, or produce light. Jesus IS light. In this morning’s message, we will explore what it means for Jesus to be light in our world and in our lives. May God use us to reflect Jesus’ light into the dark world around us!
In a text not originally included in the Gospel of John, we get a glimpse of our glorious and gracious Savior. In the midst of a trap the scribes and Pharisees intended for evil, Jesus provides a beautiful display of God's love for wayward, sinful people. Jesus, throughout his earthly ministry was a friend of sinners. Indeed He came to seek and to save the lost. Perhaps this is nowhere made more clear, than in this interaction with an adulteress woman.
In the midst of a great debate about his true identity, Jesus reveals himself as the fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles. He is what the Feast commemorated and pointed to. He is the provider of the living water that gives and sustains life, true life, eternal life. Jesus invites everyone who is thirsty, that is, whose souls are searching for satisfaction, searching for joy, searching for relief and searching for hope to come to him and find what they are looking for. Let all who are thirsty come to him.
John wants us to see the conflict that will result in Jesus’ arrest, mistrial and murder. However, we can become too familiar with these stories. We want to recapture some of the shock these events should have. In all of this, we will continue to see John’s emphasis on how different parties respond to Jesus, such that we may respond with belief.