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.
Today is a day for fathers to be thankful to God for the gift of fatherhood. And it is a day to recognize and be reminded of the role and responsibility of fathers. This morning we recognize the importance of a father’s work in teaching and equipping his children such that they would know, love and obey God. And as a result, live lives under the banner of God's blessing.
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.
Each year on Mother’s Day we take advantage of this opportunity to honor mothers. Motherhood is a magnificent calling and an awesome work! Mothers have a ministry that is a means God uses to bless the world. And it is work to be sure. Being a mother, is a full-time gig, mothers are constantly working. It is a round the clock job. The work of motherhood has no boundaries. And because of this, this calling of motherhood is not to be undertaken merely in your own strength. Rather, God supplies the Holy Spirit as a means by which mothers may be strengthened, enabled and guided to be godly mothers whose lives bear good spiritual fruit.
The crowds that ate the loaves and fish Jesus multiplied and fed to them have been searching for Jesus. And they find him in a synagogue in Capernaum. And while there, Jesus gives them an unforgettable teaching that leaves nearly everyone either confused or upset, such that nearly all of them decide to no longer follow Jesus. This week we will study what Jesus said and taught that led so many to turn away from him. We will learn that Jesus' message is indispensable if we would be saved.
After feeding the 5,000, Jesus reveals himself as the Bread of Life. He is the bread that satisfies our souls and gives eternal life. The manna the crowds seek will satisfy only for a day. Jesus offers them a better bread.
The Scriptures Must Be Fulfilled Contrary to all the disciple's expectations, after his brutal crucifixion and burial, Jesus walked out of the tomb victorious on Sunday morning. And when He appeared to his disciples, Jesus did not leave them guessing as to why He had to be betrayed, die and be resurrected. Rather, He instructed them, that all these things had to take place to fulfill the Scriptures. In what was no doubt a fascinating conversation, Jesus demonstrated that all of the Old Testament pointed to him and his triumph over sin and death.
This week we study John's description of Jesus' 4th sign, the feeding of the five thousand. None of the physical miracles Jesus performed was an end in itself. They all point to something more about him and about the Kingdom of God. And this sign is no different. The feeding of five thousand shows that Jesus is the supplier of our need. Christ has always been the perfect provider of his people’s needs. Indeed, He is the true shepherd that satisfies his sheep.