Have you ever noticed how different the Gospel of John is compared to the other gospels? Youll find John reports many of Jesus sayings that Matthew, Mark and Luke do not. Of course, students of the Bible have long speculated as to why this might be, but I believe he wrote his gospel toward the end of his life (A.D. 85-90) to correct the false teaching which had arisen about the nature of Jesus Christ. By that time people were already distorting the truth about Jesus and that meant the power of the gospel to save was in jeopardy. John knew that Jesus was not merely a great man, but the divine Son of God who left heaven to die for our sins. Over and over in his gospel he records Jesus telling us where He came from and that He was sent here by God on a mission. Yet even His own disciples were shocked by His claims. In fact, though He said and did many things that offended the religious leaders, it was His claim to divinity that actually got Him crucified. So we shouldnt be surprised that even in Johns day some began to question the literal sonship of Jesus. To counteract this John doesnt focus on the teachings of Jesus, but on His statements about Himself. He wants us to do more than admire Jesus or gain wisdom from Him. John understood that the miracle of the new birth itself is dependant upon believing the truth about Jesus.
So as we prepare our hearts for communion today lets listen to Jesus tell us who He really is. And if we have the ears to hear well marvel that the Son of God would allow Himself to be crucified for us. Then lets take the bread and cup with fresh awe and thanksgiving.
A. Johns warning
1) 1 John 2:18-25
2) 2 John 1:7-11
Dont you dare take Jesus down to the level of being merely a human. You cant come to God except through Jesus and you have to know who He is to believe in Him.
B. Who is Jesus?
1) 5:18, 21-29
The One who raises the dead to life
The Judge of all humanity
The Son who is honored as God just as the Father is honored
Dwelling in heaven
Seeing the Father
Coming to earth to die sacrificially
3) 1:1-5, 10, 18
Participated in the creation of the universe
Divine in nature as the begotten Son
4) 7:17, 33-36
His nature cannot be understood without revelation (6:65)
Going back to heaven
8:14, 21-24, 38-42, 51-59
Going back to heaven
Knew Abraham personally (Ge 18)
Sent to earth by the Father
Abraham understood what He would do (Ge 22)
Declared Himself to be God
6) 17:1-5, 8, 24
Glorified as divinity
Eternal life comes by believing in the Father and the Son
Glorified before the foundation of the world
7) Php. 2:5-8 (Paul)
C. Why some dont believe
1) 6:37, 44, 45, 64, 65
3) The Father reveals Christ to some and not to others. The Father works constantly to prepare hearts to receive His Son, He does this by convicting us and calling us to repent of our sins (Mk 1:2-4). Those who refuse must harden their hearts
D. What is our response?
1) Jn 7:17
2) Who is He?
3) What has He done?
1) Can you remember the moment when you first heard the gospel? What was your initial response? How long did it take for you to believe in Him?
2) Restate Philippians 2:5-11 so that a young child could understand it. What attitude did Jesus model that Paul wants in us?