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February 19, 2018

 

The Gospel of JOHN

“FIFTH SIGN” (Miracle)

 

The Gospel of John is a gospel of belief.  The purpose and main point of this gospel is clearly stated in John

 

Please say with me our memory verses:

 

John 20:30-31

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs that his followers saw, which are not written in this book.  31 But these are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.  Then, by believing, you can have eternal life through his name.

 

There are seven primary “signs” (miracles) that John mentions in his gospel, and each one confirms the deity of Jesus.  The first sign / miracle was Jesus turning water into very fine wine (John 2:1-11).  The second sign (miracle) was healing of the nobleman’s son (John 4:46-51).  The third sign (miracle) was the healing at the pool of Bethesda (John 5:1-47).  The fourth sign (miracle) was the feeding of the 5,000+ (John 6:1-14).

 

Today let’s look at the fifth sign (miracle) in the Gospel of John - Jesus Walking On Water. 

 

John 6:15-21 (NLV)

15 Jesus knew they were about to come and take Him to make Him king, so He went to the mountain by Himself.  16 When evening had come, His followers went down to the lake.  17 They got into a boat and started to cross the lake to go to the city of Capernaum.  By this time it was dark.  Jesus had not come back to them yet.  18 A strong wind was making high waves on the lake.  19 They were about half way across the lake when they saw Jesus walking on the water.  As He got near the boat, they were afraid.  20 But Jesus called to them, “It is I.  Do not be afraid.”  21 They were glad to take Him into the boat. At once they got to the other side where they wanted to go.

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After feeding the 5,000+, Jesus withdrew by Himself, because He knew that the crowd was going to try and force Him to be king.  He did not give specific instructions to His disciples before He slipped away, so, they went to down to the sea.  From there, the disciples set out on a night time voyage across the sea . . . heading to Capernaum.  But, Murphy’s Law kicked in, and a really rough storm kicked up!

 

Jesus’ disciples had worked hard all night long to get across the water, but they had rowed only about half way across the Sea of Galilee (about 3 or 4 miles).  In the middle of their nautical struggle in a storm, Jesus came walking on top of the water toward them!

 

When they realized that it was Jesus, they let Him into the boat - and they immediately reached their destination.  (21 They were glad to take Him into the boat. At once they got to the other side where they wanted to go.)  That’s a miracle within a miracle!  Without Jesus, they were struggling to make just a little headway . . . but with Jesus, the struggle was over. 

When we allow Jesus to be with us on our journey, our journey is no longer a struggle but a joy! 

 

 Let’s unpack this fifth sign  (miracle).

 

The Setting (15-18)

 

John 6:15-18 (NLV)

15 Jesus knew they were about to come and take Him to make Him king, so He went to the mountain by Himself.  16 When evening had come, His followers went down to the lake.  17 They got into a boat and started to cross the lake to go to the city of Capernaum.  By this time it was dark.  Jesus had not come back to them yet.  18 A strong wind was making high waves on the lake. 

 

After an all-day speaking engagement, which included the miracle of feeding 5,000 men (plus women and children) with five barley loaves and two fish . . . Jesus was no doubt tired!  And I’m sure the disciples were exhausted, too!  They had been with Jesus, and the massive crowd, all day.  Plus, they had served lunch to that ginormous group of people.  The crowd wanted to take Jesus and make Him their king.  (Jesus was, and is, King - but not the kind that the crowd was looking for.)  Jesus removed Himself from the crowd.  That was pretty amazing itself!  He slipped away, undetected, and was able to take some time . . . to be alone with the Father and to rest.

 

The disciples set out to go to the other side of the lake (the Sea of Galilee).  It was a distance of maybe 8-10 miles.  All of the disciples were all in one boat.  About halfway across the lake, in the dark, a storm arose . . . and they were afraid.  That is the setting for this sign!

 

 

The Savior (19-20)

 

John 6:19-20 (NLV)

19 They were about half way across the lake when they saw Jesus walking on the water.  As He got near the boat, they were afraid.  20 But Jesus called to them, “It is I.  Do not be afraid.”

 

Jesus does not want His followers to be alone, in the dark, or afraid.  When we cannot go to Jesus, Jesus will come to us!  He has promised to never leave us or forsake us:

 

Deuteronomy 31:6 (NLV)

Be strong and have strength of heart.  Do not be afraid or shake with fear . . . For the Lord your God is the One Who goes with you.  He will be faithful to you.  He will not leave you alone.

 

Jesus came to His disciples - walking on the water.  (When we are in trouble, Jesus will walk on top of whatever it is that we are afraid of!  He is above all.  He is our Savior, and when we need Him we can count on Him.)  The disciples were afraid . . . but, when Jesus spoke, their fears were gone! 

 

And when their fears were gone . . . they welcomed Jesus into their boat!

 

 

The Security (20-21)

 

John 6:20-21 (NLV)

20 But Jesus called to them, “It is I.  Do not be afraid.”  21 They were glad to take Him into the boat.  At once they got to the other side where they wanted to go.

 

When we have Jesus on board our life, there is nothing for us to fear.

 

1 John 4:4 (NIV)

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

 

Jesus is not limited by the earth’s gravitational pull, or darkness, or space, or time, or ANYTHING.  Did you notice that immediately the disciples were at their destination?

 

John 6:20-21 (NIV)

20 But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.”  21 Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading.Top of Form

 

When we have Jesus within the vessel of our life, we can rest assured that we will reach our destination - and our final destination is heaven!

 

 

The goal of the disciples was to reach their destination.  They were primarily hindered by the storm which arose quickly.  When they saw Jesus walking on the water, and coming near the boat, they were afraid.  It was when they received Jesus that their fear was calmed and immediately they reached their goal.

 

We do not have control over the wind and storms of life!  They happen, and they do come our way.  When we find ourselves in a storm, and we feel like we’re about to be blown away - there is One who we can call upon.  He is limitless and all-powerful!  He walks on water (our biggest problems)!  And best of all . . . He draws near to those who will receive Him!

 

This fifth sign (miracle) that John records shows us, again,
that JESUS IS THE SON OF GOD AND THE SON OF MAN,
THE PROMISED MESSIAH . . . THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD!

 

 

February 12, 2018

 

The Gospel of JOHN

“FOURTH SIGN” (Miracle)

 

The Gospel of John is a gospel of belief.  The purpose and main point of this gospel is clearly stated in John

 

WHY DON’T YOU SAY, OUT LOUD, our memory verses:

 

John 20:30-31

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs that his followers saw, which are not written in this book.  31 But these are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.  Then, by believing, you can have eternal life through his name.

 

There are seven primary “signs” (miracles) that John mentions in his gospel, and each one confirms the deity of Jesus.  The first sign / miracle was Jesus turning a water into fine wine (John 2:1-11).  The second sign (miracle) was healing of the nobleman’s son (John 4:46-51).  The third sign (miracle) was the healing of a man at the pool of Bethesda (John 5:1-47).

 

Today we will look at the fourth sign (miracle) in the Gospel of John - Feeding 5,000 People. 

 

This miracle is included in all four of the Gospels:  Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:30-44; Luke 9:10-17.  It had strong appeal, probably because of Israel’s experience in the wilderness - when God ‘rained down manna from heaven for them to eat.’  This sign (miracle) shows Jesus as the supplier of our physical needs and as the Living Bread / true Bread of God.  He is the one who daily feeds the whole world . . . by creating massive harvest fields from just a few grains.  Jesus always provides.  The question is:  Will we trust Him to provide OUR needs. 

 

John 6:1-14 (NIV)

1 Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), 2 and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick.  3 Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples.  4 The Jewish Passover Festival was near.  5 When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?”  6 He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.  7 Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!  8 Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, 9Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?”     10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.”  There was plenty of grass in that place, and they sat down (about five thousand men were there).  11 Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted.  He did the same with the fish.  12 When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.”  13 So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten.  14 After the people saw the sign (miracle) Jesus performed, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet (the Messiah) who is to come into the world.”

 

The Place (vs. 1-3)

 

Jesus and His disciples were in the area where the twelve disciples were from, which was along the shore of the Sea of Galilee.  We find that this God-created place was a type of natural amphitheater.  It was an ideal and beautiful place, for Jesus to sit and teach His followers.

 

 

The Passover (v. 4)

 

This sign (miracle) took place just before Passover.  (This means that Jesus was probably into his public ministry for at least a year, at this time.)  With Passover getting closer, the people may have been thinking about the Great Passover Feast.  Little did they know that the Passover Lamb was in their midst, and was about to miraculously feed them all!

 

 

The People (vs. 5-6)

 

There were 5,000 men in the crowd.  (Some scholars say that with the women and children it could easily have been 10,000 to 20,000 people present!)  And remember, they were all following Jesus because of the signs (miracles).

 

 

The Problem (v. 7)

 

The multitude of people were listening to Jesus, when the disciples realized that there was no food for them to eat.  Because it was getting late in the day, the disciples wanted to dismiss the crowd to go home.  The only food available was a sack lunch that a boy had brought with him.  At least he (probably his mom) had thought about being prepared for lunch! 

 

Can you imagine being the only one with food, in a crowd of 5,000 hungry men?!    I think I would have hidden my lunch . . . and snuck bite of it, in between the points of Jesus’ sermon!  But, the boy’s sack lunch was confiscated by the disciples.  Bummer.

 

 

The Provision (vs. 8-13)

 

It may have only been a boy’s brown bag lunch, but remember, “little is much when God is in it!”  Jesus took the five barley biscuits and the two, small fish, and blessed them.  (Side note:  5 plus 2 equals 7, which is the Biblically perfect number or ‘number of completion.’ )  However, Jesus was NOT about to do addition - He was ABOUT TO DO multiplication! 

 

Don’t Miss This Awesome Truth:  The miracle of provision took place AS the disciples were serving the ginormous crowd! 

 

PLUS, Jesus instructed the disciples to gather up all of the remaining food.  There were twelve baskets full of left-overs!  Were these simply 12 “doggy bags” for the disciples?  Historians say that those 12 baskets were most likely bushel baskets . . . which would have been more than left-overs for the disciples. 

Maybe . . . Jesus was providing needed provisions for some of poorer people who were in the crowd of 5,000 that day!  Hmmm . . .

 

 

The Prophet (vs. 14-15)

 

After the miracle took place, the multitude wanted to make Jesus their king.  They desired an earthly king who could / would physically and violently stop the Roman oppression.  Jesus came as Prophet, Priest, and King.  He withdrew, because the purpose of His birth was not to save the Israelites from Rome . . . it was to save the world from sin!  Moses spoke of another ‘prophet’ coming after himself, and that they should listen to HIM. Jesus CHRIST is the fulfillment of that prophecy!

 

 

CONCLUSION

 

There are several things we can learn from this fourth sign (miracle).  The Lord loves to supply our needs!  God tests our faith, with the challenge to do the impossible.  According to Philip and the rest of the disciples, feeding the multitude was impossible.  God often ministers through weakness.  He does not select strong people so that He can use their strengths.  He does not select perfect people who always do things right in the eyes of other people. 

 

God chooses weak and broken people - so that He can demonstrate His power through their weakness. 

 

The disciples thought there was nothing that could be done to feed the 5,000+ hungry people, but, God is NOT limited by our experience or our resources

 

The disciples thought there was nothing that could be done.  And, today, we in the Church also frequently limit ourselves.  In our fears and doubts and insecurities, we also sometimes say: “This is impossible!” 

 

God delights in doing the unexpected . . . for our good, and for his glory!

 

The feeding of the 5,000+ is the fourth sign (miracle) that John shares . . . telling us that THIS sign points to the truth that - Jesus is the Son of God / Son of Man - the Lord AND Savior, OUR HEALER, AND THE PROVIDER fOR the world!

 

 

February 5, 2018

 

The Gospel of JOHN

“THIRD SIGN” (Miracle)

 

The Gospel of John is a gospel of belief. 
The purpose and main point of this gospel is clearly stated in John 20:30-31.

 

Please say with me our memory verses:

 

John 20:30-31

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs that his followers saw, which are not written in this book.  31 But these are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.  Then, by believing, you can have eternal life through his name.

 

There are seven primary “signs” (miracles) that John mentions in his gospel, and each one confirms the deity of Jesus.  The first sign / miracle was Jesus turning water into very fine wine (John 2:1-11).  The second sign (miracle) was healing of the nobleman’s son (John 4:46-51).  Today, we look at the third sign (miracle) . . . Healing At A Pool (John 5:1-47).   

 

John 5:1-47

1 Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals.  Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades.  Here a great number of disabled people used to lie - the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.  One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years.  When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”  Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred.  While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”  Then Jesus said to him, “Get up!  Pick up your mat and walk.”  At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.  The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”  11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’”  12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?”  13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.  14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again.  Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.  15 The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.  16 So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jewish leaders began to persecute him.  17 In his defense Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.  18 For this reason they tried all the more to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.  19 Jesus gave them this answer:  “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.  20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does.  Yes, and he will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be amazed.  21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it.  22 Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him.  24 Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.  25 Very truly I tell you, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.  26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself.  27 And he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man.  28 Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice 29 and come out - those who have done what is good will rise to live, and those who have done what is evil will rise to be condemned.  30 By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.  31 If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true.  32 There is another who testifies in my favor, and I know that his testimony about me is true.  33 You have sent to John and he has testified to the truth.  34 Not that I accept human testimony; but I mention it that you may be saved.  35 John was a lamp that burned and gave light, and you chose for a time to enjoy his light.   36 I have testimony weightier than that of John.  For the works that the Father has given me to finish - the very works that I am doing - testify that the Father has sent me.  37 And the Father who sent me has himself testified concerning me.  You have never heard his voice nor seen his form, 38 nor does his word dwell in you, for you do not believe the one he sent.  39 You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life.  These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, 40 yet you refuse to come to me to have life.   41 I do not accept glory from human beings, 42 but I know you.  I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts.  43 I have come in my Father’s name, and you do not accept me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him.  44 How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?  45 But do not think I will accuse you before the Father.  Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set.  46 If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me.  47 But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?

 

 

This sign (miracle) is different than the first two.  For the first sign (miracle), which took place at a wedding, Jesus was informed of a need by his own mother.  For the second sign, the healing of a dying boy, Jesus was sought out by the boy’s father.  In this third sign, we see Jesus himself seeking out a man who had been crippled for thirty-eight years.

 

Jesus intentionally healed this man on the Sabbath day, because this miracle was a challenge to traditional religion . . . which was NOT being effective.  Jesus came as the divine Light and Life Giver!

 

The Pool of Bethseda has been called the “house of mercy” / “house of the portico” / “house of the olive” / and “house of the outpouring.”  But, for the crippled man it had become a house of hopelessness.  This is a clear indication of how empty the religious system in Jerusalem really was.  BUT, when Jesus arrived, the pool containing five colonnades became the place of grace!

 

The Pool (5:1-4)

 

The pool was by the sheep gate where there was a lot of traffic.  People would enter the sheep gate, with their sacrifices, and would go toward the Temple.  The pool was supposed to be a place of mercy, for there was no other help available for the ones who were there - except a miracle.  When the angel would bless (stir up) the water, the first one in would be healed.

The Problem (5:5-7)

 

This man was not able to get into the water on his own.  He was dependent upon others.  Years of watching others receive their healing had left the man hopeless (and probably angry, and bitter).  He had no one to help him into the water.  The man had to let go of his old identity as a ‘sick man’ . . . and he had to be willing to be healed.

 

 

The Power (5:8-9)

 

Jesus came to the man.  (I often hear people say, “When I came to the Lord . . .”  The truth is, we don’t come to the Lord - He comes to us.)  He came to this man.  The man heard the Word of Jesus and he responded!  The man got up carrying his mat and started walking!!  It was almost like that Forrest Gump moment - I was running!”  The man was walking!  

 

This man could truly say:

I’m going for a walk now.  Don’t bother me.  I’m walking by faith!”

 

 

The Pharisees (5:10-13)

 

When the man was healed, it was on the Sabbath - and it was unlawful to do any kind of labor or even carry anything on the Sabbath (legalism).  Jesus broke the Law by healing the man on the Sabbath, and, the man broke the Law by carrying his mat!

 

 

The Praise (5:14-15)

 

The man picked up his mat and walked, because Jesus told him to.  (Now THAT is a high form of praise . . . doing the very thing Jesus says to do!)

 

 

The Persecution (5:16-18)

 

Instead of people being excited for the man, they criticized and persecuted him - because he was breaking “the Law.”  Forget the Law - the man had been healed by Jesus, after being an invalid for thirty-eight years! 

 

Sometimes people will not be happy for you.  You may have to endure criticism, or even persecution, because of you being a follower of Jesus.  They hated Him . . . how do you suppose they will feel about his followers?

 

 

The Purpose (5:19-23)

 

The sign (miracle) pointed to Jesus as the Messiah.  Jesus is God in the flesh, and He touches the ones who need Him.  The man had no one to help him, but Jesus is a friend of sinners and sufferers!

The Promise (5:24-30)

 

Jesus promises that from this moment on - those who hear his Word, and who believe his Word, and who follow his Word . . . WILL BE SPIRITUALLY HEALED and will have eternal life with him, in heaven!

 

 

The Prophecy (5:31-47)

 

Jesus said that He had come in His Father’s Name.  He was sent by the Father and He is equal with the Father.  This brought even more trouble, when Jesus cited Moses speaking of Him.

 

 

The religious Jews (Pharisees) were outraged when they saw this man carrying his mat.  Their anger was further fueled, into rage, when they learned Jesus was the One who healed the man - because the healing occurred on the Sabbath day, and Jesus equated Himself with God and referred to God as His Father (verses 16-23)!  The Pharisees would not be satisfied until Jesus was put to death. 

 

The healing of the man beside the pool is the third sign (miracle) that John shares . . . telling us that THIS sign points to the truth that - Jesus is the Son of God / Son of Man - the Lord & Savior & HEALER of the world!

 

Jesus Christ IS the Divine Healer. 
And still, today, He still seeks to heal those who are sick
. . . those who are sick in their sin AND those who are physically sick.

 

 

January 29, 2018

 

The Gospel of JOHN

“SECOND SIGN” (Miracle)

 

The Gospel of John is a gospel of belief.  The purpose and main point of this gospel is clearly stated in John 20:30-31.

 

Are YOU memorizing these verses?

 

Please say, out loud, the main point of the Gospel of John: 

 

John 20:30-31

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs that his followers saw, which are not written in this book.  31 But these are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.  Then, by believing, you can have eternal life through his name.

 

There are seven primary “signs” (miracles) that John mentions in his gospel, and each one confirms the deity of Jesus.  The first sign / miracle was Jesus turning a great amount of water into very fine wine (John 2:1-11). 

 

The second sign / miracle is found in John 4:46-54 which is the healing of a nobleman’s son.

 

John 4:46-54 (NIV)

46 Once more Jesus visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine.  And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum.  47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.  48 Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”  49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”  50 Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.”  The man took Jesus at his word and departed.  51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living.  52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.  53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.”  So, he and his whole household believed.  54 This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.

 

The Gospel of John is structured topically:

 

Chapters 1-12 primarily focus on the “Seven Signs” (miracles) and Chapters 13-20 focus on the glory of God.  Interwoven throughout is the gospel message:  Jesus is God in the flesh, and the hope for spiritually lost humanity.  (Jesus declares this truth through the 7 “I AM” statements, in John.)

 

This second sign (miracle) confirms the healing power of God at work through Jesus.  Jesus is met by a nobleman, a royal official (most likely an officer under Herod Antipas, the tetrarch of Galilee).  This man pleads with Jesus to travel from Cana to Capernaum (about 22 miles) to heal his dying son. 

Let’s unpack this sign (miracle) . . .

 

The Places (4:43-46)

John 4:43-46 (NIV)

43 After the two days he left for Galilee.  44 (Now Jesus himself had pointed out that a prophet has no honor in his own country.)  45 When he arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him.  They had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, for they also had been there.  46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine.  And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. 

 

Jesus had just come through Samaria.  While He was there, He met with a woman at a well.  Many believed in Jesus, because of the of the woman’s witness / testimony.  This shows the importance of our personal testimony!  Jesus, being a Jew, broke tradition and cultural barriers by going through Samaria.  In fact, He stayed in Samaria two days . . . and many others believed because of the things He told them. 

 

Jesus left Samaria, after two days, and went to Galilee.  Galilee was where the ‘common folks’ lived and worked.  They were known as the “peoples of the land” . . . and they were NOT the elite.  However, they had seen, and heard of, what Jesus had done while in Jerusalem.  (He was a rebel - a revolutionary!  He overturned the money changers tables at the Temple!)  Jesus was NOT pious or a religious legalist.  Jesus was welcomed in Galilee among the common folks.

 

 

THE PLEA (4:47)

John 4:47 (NIV)

47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death. 

 

The nobleman, most likely, ‘broke a barrier’ himself.  He was probably an official under Herod.  Because of his son being deathly sick, this nobleman left his post and went to Jesus!  (When a parent’s child is deathly sick, there is no barrier strong enough to keep that parent from seeking help.)  This man believed Jesus could heal his son!

 

Every parent knows that a child is someone who can wash his or her hands . . . without getting the soap wet.  But if that child gets a germ, and becomes seriously ill, NOTHING can stop the parent from seeking help for their ailing offspring! 

 

The Problem (4:48)

 

John 4:48 (NIV)

48 Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.” 

 

The man’s son was dying, and there was no hope - apart from Jesus.  The nobleman was not where Jesus was, so the nobleman had to go to Him.  We ought to stay with Jesus all the time, right?  But, even as Christians, when we have problems the place to turn first is to the Lord!

 

 

The Persistence (4:49)

John 4:49 (NIV)

49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” 

 

No one could keep this man away from Jesus.  He was going to meet with Him, and, he would not be sent away.  Likely, this important & respected man humbled himself . . . perhaps to the point of crying and begging Jesus for help.

 

Matthew 7:7-8 (NIV)

7 Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

 

 

The Promise (4:50-54)

John 4:50-54 (NIV)

50 Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.”  The man took Jesus at his word and departed.  51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living.  52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.  53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.”  So, he and his whole household believed.  54 This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.

 

Jesus sent the man away and told him that his son would live!  Apparently, the man had enough faith to leave Jesus and go back to his son.  On his journey home (22 miles away), the man was met by his servants.  They told him that his son was healed!  He asked them, “What time did my boy get better?”  AND WHAT DO YOU KNOW?  It was the same time that Jesus spoke to the man and told him that his son would live! 

 

How do you think this man . . . this dad . . . felt?  Overjoyed, he most likely ran the rest of the way home to his son - probably praising the Lord all the way!  WE need to be people who will run & shout praise for the great things the Lord has done for us!

 

Regardless of his hoity-toity position, this father was desperate for his son to be healed.  When he heard about Jesus . . . he responded by seeking a miracle. 

 

After Jesus heard the plea, He responded with a remark about the people’s ‘need for signs and wonders.’  And Jesus told the man to go away . . . that his son would live.

 

What we are told in v. 50 is vital to the power of faith in the Word of Jesus:

 

50 Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.”  The man took Jesus at his word and departed. 

 

The man believed the word of Jesus and he left to go where he should be!  (We, too must believe the Word of God . . . and ‘go where the Lord directs us to go.’) 

 

 

And AS HE exercised his faith, the joy of hearing the news of the boy’s healing happened / was experienced!  That had to have strengthened the nobleman’s faith!! 

 

And, this should strengthen our faith, too.  Jesus is NOT limited by time . . . or distance . . . or circumstances. 

 

All we have to do is place our trust in His Word. 

 

God gives us His promise:

 

2 Corinthians 1:20 (NLT)

For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!”

And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes” ) ascends to God for his glory.

 

The healing of the nobleman’s son is the second sign (miracle) that John shares . . . telling us that THIS sign (miracle) points to the truth that - Jesus is the Son of God / Son of Man - the Lord & Savior of the world!

 

 

January 22, 2018

 

The Gospel of JOHN

“FIRST SIGN” (Miracle)

 

The Gospel of John is a gospel of belief.  The purpose and main point of this gospel is clearly stated in John 20:30-31.

 

I challenge you to memorize these verses!

 

Here is THE MAIN POINT of the gospel of john: 

 

John 20:30-31

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs that his followers saw, which are not written in this book.  31 But these are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.  Then, by believing, you can have eternal life through his name.

 

There are seven primary “signs” (miracles) that John mentions in his gospel, and each one confirms the deity of Jesus (2:1-11, 4:46-51, 5:1-9, 6:1-14, 6:16-21, 9:1-7, and 11:1-44).  John’s gospel follows a topical format not a chronological one.  The seven signs (miracles) are further supported by Jesus himself with - seven “I AM” statements.

 

These two themes are beautifully woven together in God’s plan of Salvation. 

 

Today, let’s look at the first “sign” - as found in John 2:1-12.

 

The Occasion (2:1-2)

John 2:1-2 (NIV)

1 On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee.  Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding.

 

It was a wedding!  A joyous occasion that turned into a social embarrassment . . . because the wedding wine ran out!  The newlyweds were in an awkward position, as well as their families.  The culture during that time was different than ours today.  A Jewish wedding was a huge celebration, and it could go on for days.

 

 

The Observation (2:3)

 

John 2:3 (NIV)

When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”

 

Mary, the mother of Jesus brings the problem to the attention of Jesus.  It is important to think about how this wedding affected Jesus.  He was a single man without a bride.  His Bride is the Church. How many of us, before we were married, felt like a third wheel at weddings?  Everyone is excited about the love of the bride and groom . . . while the unmarried person often observes all of the festivities through the lens of being single.  Weddings can be not much fun, for single people. 

Jesus has a Bride - the Church.  That’s you and me!  Jesus has a wedding day, but, for His ‘wedding’ to take place, He had to pay the penalty of the sins of His Bride (His death, burial, and resurrection).  Where is Jesus’ joy?  It was ahead of Him . . . on the other side of the cross!  The wedding in Cana was the place Jesus chose for His first public miracle.  And, He brought joy to the hearts of many people, by turning water into wine.

 

 

The Obedience (2:4-8)

John 2:4-8 (NIV)

Woman, why do you involve me? Jesus replied.  “My hour has not yet come.  His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”  Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.  Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.  Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”  They did so, 

 

Jesus told His mother that His time had not yet come.  I believe that Jesus was referring to the cross - the time of suffering that was to come.  He was not ready, yet, and He told His mother.  Being a good Jewish mother, Mary told the servants to do whatever Jesus said to do. 

 

NOW That will preach . . .  

If you are a servant (disciple) of Jesus, you must do whatever He says to do!

 

 

The Outcome (2:9-12)

John 2:9-12 (NIV)

They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine.  He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew.  Then he called the bridegroom aside 10 and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.  11 What Jesus did here in Cana of Galilee was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.  12 After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother and brothers and his disciples.  There they stayed for a few days.

 

The servants took some of the water to the master of the banquet.  And when tasted it, he discovered that it was not water . . . but the finest wine he had ever tasted!  Now, watch this symbolism:

 

The wine is symbolic of the joy of the Lord - and there is nothing greater!  Jesus is the real Master of the banquet . . . and HE brings joy to the wedding - our eternal soul, joined in covenant relationship with Him forever!

 

 

It’s interesting me that this first sign (miracle) happens at a wedding . . . and the last sign (miracle), in John’s list, takes place at a funeral (John 11:1-44) - the resurrection of Lazarus.  The miracle / sign of changing of water into wine symbolizes the replacement of the old religion of Judaism with the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

 

Give special notice to this:  The containers were six water pots (18-27 gallons each).  They were used for purification (washing) - which was part of the Law.  The pots were filled to the brim, and there were six of them (the Biblical number for man), so, that means there was between 108 - 162 gallons of water!  Catch this symbolism:

 

WE can be filled with the Law (like the jars were filled with water) . . . and still have NO joy (if only Law that is filling us up.)  We must be filled with the ‘grace AND truth’ of Jesus!

 

Also, wine is symbolic of

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