Yes, the time is coming when a man who kills you will think he is thereby serving God! Phillips John’s Gospel uses several chapters to prepare the disciples for the end of Jesus’ ministry and the beginning of theirs. It is a summary of what they have learned over the three years, but is filled with the tools needed for the hard days to come.
We know that of the Twelve, only John died of old age. Even he spent many years in prison. Back in John 16, Jesus told the disciples, they will do these things because they have never known either the Father or myself. NJB He was saying that the synagogue leaders and the Temple leaders did not know God. He is also saying that many church leaders today do not know God.
How is it possible to attend synagogue or church for years—reading the Bible—and not know God? How is it possible to say, “I believe in Jesus,” and not know God?
By misreading the Word, misunderstand what is said, and mistrusting what we see. To hear God, we must be listening for God. To hear what the world says we listen for the world. Even as we read the Bible, we must focus on the presence of God, not on the world. If we read about the wrath of God, we need to understand what that really means, and it is different in many cases. As an example: 2 Kings 24:4—the Lord was not willing to forgive. NIV Yet Jesus made it clear that the Mercy of God is so vast that there is no sin that cannot be forgiven.
As John says in Revelation: The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” Let everyone who hears this also say, “Come!” Let the thirsty man come, and let everyone who wishes take the water of life as a gift. Phillips In the Gospel, John writes, May they all be one. Father, may they be one in us, as you are in me and I am in you, so that the world may believe it was you who sent me. NJB
To be one in Jesus and in God requires faith. The faith of the jailor who witnessed God’s power as he released the imprisoned and understood it to be from God and not man. The faith of the jailor who at once knew who was a servant of both Jesus and God, and went directly to Paul to ask, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? NIV Paul said, Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved. NIV
We try to make it difficult to join this club. We don’t want “those” people to gain entrance. We have a country club mentality instead of a street ball pickup group. Ye don’t like it when Jesus says that anyone can follow him. We don’t want to have to spend eternity with the likes of ___ (fill in the blank).
But Jesus does.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen. NIV
Be righteous and do good.