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John1:1-5 John 1: 6-18 John 1:19-51 John 2 John 3:1-21
John 3:22-36 John 4: 1-42 John 4:43-54 John 5:1-15 John 5:16-47
John 6:1-40 John 6:41-71 John 7: 1-53 John 8:1-30 John 8; 31-53
John 9:1-41
John 10:1-42
John 11: 1-57 John 12: 1-26 John: 27-50
John 13: 1-38 John 14:1-14 John 14: 15-31 John 15: 1-17 John 15: 18-27
John 16: 5-33 John 17:1-26 John 18: 1-16 John 18: 15-27 John 19: 1-16
John 19: 17-30 John 19: 31-42 John 20: 1-23 John 20: 24-31 John 21: 1-25
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John 5:15-47

Jesus said we’d do greater works than he did

 

Well,  Jesus continues further, in verse 20 he says, “The Father loves the Son and shows him all things that he himself does, and will show him greater works than these, that you may marvel.”  Greater than taking a man whose been lame for 38 years and miraculously healing him and having him walk, greater works than even that.  And now compare that with John chapter 14, verse 12, it’s even more amazing to consider that when Jesus says in John chapter 14, verse 12, “Most assuredly,” again “Verily, verily, I say to you, he who believes in me, the works that I do he will do also, and greater works than these he will do, because I go to my Father.”  Maybe not all the works, but man, God wants to work through us.  And I look and read what Jesus did, and the lives that were touched through him, and he says “I want to work through you, in even greater ways.”  That’s mind boggling.  That’s intense.  [see http://www.unityinchrist.com/evangelism/excerpts_isawjesus.htm and http://www.unityinchrist.com/evangelism/samaritan_purse.htm to witness some of these greater works Jesus is doing in and through his own, and how you too can participate in these adventures.]  That says the Christian walk is an exciting walk, that’s for sure.  [And if you don’t think so, click on those two links and read them through entirely and try to say it isn’t an exciting walk!]  And, man, that’s an amazing truth.  I believe all those people we had up here before the service that are going to the Festival of Life, they’ll come back with stories, validating that.  They will say, “This is what God did, you won’t believe this, man.  We prayed, and then we went there, and this is what happened!  You wouldn’t believe the timing of all this, and, wow!  I actually met somebody, we had this natural connection, it was a God thing, that we would sit down on the subway together, that person of all people, next to me, me thinking what I was thinking, reading what I had read, and saying the things that I just said, amazing!”  And stories like this that God will do.  And lives will be touched, and lives will be transformed.  You know, each week there’s been these meetings for preparation in Manhattan for the Festival of Life, and I’ve been trying to go down to every other one, because we’ve been part of the planning for the Festival of Life [this denomination’s major local evangelistic outreach into various communities].  I’ve heard one comment, as a pastor in Brooklyn, he shared the story about Riker’s Island, this prison in New York City, has just opened it’s doors to the Festival of Life, there’s been so many things, but this is one little example, even recently within the last week or two.  This whole prison has been opened to us, they’ve essentially said ‘You can do whatever you want to do.’  And now in Riker’s Island, this big prison, there’s different overseers of different religious groups, there’s an Islamic Muslim leader, there’s you know the Buddhist leader, there’s the Christian leader.  But everyone said ‘Hey, the doors are wide open.’  So they’re actually going to do a barbeque in a prison, you know, put up the grills and give a barbeque to these guys and minister in many different ways.  But this is what the Muslim leader said, during a meeting, and they’re trying to get approval for all these things, and John really has it on his heart, we really want to have personal contact with these prisoners, sometimes if you’re in intense parts of these prisons, some of these guys have been in there for a long time, they’ve done outrageous crimes, you may not necessarily have personal contact with them, and a barbeque at times might be difficult.  Anyway, they’re sitting at the table, and this is what the Muslim leader says in the meeting to the officials that ultimately are going to make the decision, he says “These guys”, meaning the Festival of Life guys, “want personal contact with the men so they can tell them about Jesus and pray for them”.  He said that because he wanted to encourage the officials to let the Christians come in and tell these people about Jesus Christ and pray for them!  Now that’s a miracle!---that another religion would say ‘Man, open the door, these guys are coming to make converts’, that’s essentially what he was saying.  The Christian pastor was thinking ‘I didn’t even have to say it, God used the Muslim to say it.’  And how was the official going to deny, when an Islamic guy is saying for the Christian group, I mean there’s no way you can say ‘That’s not fair.’  The Islamic guy is saying that.  That’s just a little thing, but there’s so many stories, I mean I think they had three tractor-trailers, I think I mentioned that to you last week, but within a week or two ago they had three tractor-trailers of water, I think there’s thousands of bottled water, I mentioned all the candy bars, all the Bibles, millions of pieces of literature, doors opening.  In fact it’s possible, some significant leaders in our nation even in the City of New York and the State of New York may be at one of the meetings, and I won’t mention any names.  But just cool what God does.  Jesus said ‘I do these great works’ and then later he says to his disciples, he says ‘and as my followers, man the Holy Spirit, if he comes upon you in power, you won’t believe what he’s going to do in and through you.’  And we see examples of that in the Book of Acts.

 

Three keys of God

 

Verse 21, these works include, he says that he himself does, “As the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom he will.”  Now the Jewish perspective and understanding [back then], the Jews believed and taught that only God the Father could raise the dead.  Which is true, and God the Son, God.  They taught that Jehovah held three great keys, this is the teaching of the Jews at this time.  There were three keys, the key to open heaven and give rain, Deuteronomy chapter 28, the key to open the womb and give conception, Genesis 30, verse 22, and they also believed that he had the key to open the grave and raise the dead, Ezekiel chapter 37, verse 13.  [Comment:  Very interesting, all these “keys” are Biblical.  In fact, you will see in this very text today that Jesus himself says emphatically that there are only two major resurrections of the dead.  This resurrection the Jews referred to as the third key, in Ezekiel 37:1-14 is a massive physical resurrection back to life, where the Holy Spirit is then given to those individuals.  In Revelation 20:4,6 and verses 5, 11-12 these two major resurrections are mentioned.  Now we see here in Ezekiel this major resurrection prophecied, which has to be the second one mentioned in Revelation 20, the one back to physical life.  The doctrines of about heaven and hell are secondary to the Gospel of Salvation.  Maybe the Jews are aware of some things we aren’t so aware of.  The body of Christ has many differing beliefs about heaven and hell.  See http://www.unityinchrist.com/plaintruth/battle.htm.]  They believed he [God] had three great keys.  Jesus is saying that “one of those keys I also have.”  So again he’s claiming to be God to them, when he says that he’s doing the work of the Father, and they’re saying ‘You’re saying you’re God’, he doesn’t try to deny that, he just comes back and says ‘Indeed, I am God, I am God the Son, in fact I can raise the dead as he [God the Father] raises the dead.’  And that, to his audience, he’s saying to them in their perspective “I am God, I am God the Son.”  The Bible teaches it clearly.  Well as the Son of God, even today Jesus gives life to whom he will.  And he does it in this congregation [the pastor’s talking about spiritual life, being born-again, becoming indwelt with the Holy Spirit], maybe you’re come here today, man, and there’s no life in you spiritually speaking, but he wants to give you life.  He’s been doing it throughout history.  Especially to those who believe, he gives life to those who believe, as we’ve already noted in the book of John.  I think of a story of Sue Cxxx, and I’ve asked permission to share the story.  But it’s to me just a testimony of Jesus, how he gives life and ministers even to us, Sue….[tape switch-over, some text lost] she was going through her husband’s clothes, tough day to be doing that, she was doing different things, and got to his suit and there was a piece of paper that caught her eye in this suit, and she pulled out a piece of paper.  On this piece of paper was a passage of Scripture that he had evidently printed off a computer, and it was part of 2 Corinthians chapter 4 and 2 Corinthians chapter 5 that’s all that was on this piece of paper.  [He must have died]  Now understanding where she’s at, she opens this, there’s this Scripture, and then highlighted, the only thing highlighted with a highlighter to get your attention was 2nd Corinthians chapter 5, this verse “We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”  A Scripture that she’s going through his clothes.  He’s not here.  But a Scripture he put in there, that God would work to say “I’m present with the Lord.”  And that’s what God does.  God the Father raises the dead, Jesus Christ raises the dead….and many of us when we die will be with him.  He also gives us abundant life now.  Just powerful, abundant, spiritual, true, life.  And if you’re here this morning without Jesus Christ, he wants to also give you life.  And you can have that life by putting your faith, by believing in Jesus, that he is indeed the Son of God. 

 

All judgment is committed to the Son

 

Verse 22, “The Father judges no one but has committed all judgment to the Son.”  Again, he’s defending that he’s the Son of God, because when he says this to his audience, these religious Jews, they understood, an Orthodox Jew, that Jehovah God was “judge of all the earth, Genesis 18:25, and no one dared take that title of judge of all the earth.”  He has just said, as God judges, “the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son”, he’s saying, again he’s claiming he’s God the Son, he’s God himself.  And as you study through the Scriptures, you get to passages like Matthew 25, what does that mean?, and study that sometime if you haven’t, where Jesus says ‘The Son of man will stand there and judge’, and there’ll be the goats and the sheep, and he’ll separate them.  It’s interesting, his standard of judgment is, really, it’s a statement of love.  If you really know God, then there’s love in your life, and it’ll be seen.  So he’ll say, you know, did you minister to the poor and needy and to the righteous he says ‘Come be with me because you have’, and they said ‘When did we do this?’  and he’ll say ‘When you did it to the least of these, you’re ministered to me.’  I kind of did that out of order, but you remember the passage, most of you.  [Cf. Matthew 25:31-46]  Well, Jesus claims very clearly to be the Son of God, and he says then in verse 23, we’re going to go into the judgment next, but he says ‘All should honor the Son as they honor the Father.’  And in that there is this sense of worship, ‘as you worship God the Father you should worship me’ he’s saying.  So he’s saying ‘I am God’.  When you get to the Book of Revelation, and indeed when you see God the Father is worshipped, you see “the Lamb that’s taken away the sin of the world”, God the Son, being worshipped.  And those that say we shouldn’t worship Jesus do not understand the teaching of the Scriptures in Jesus’ own words.  Indeed he is the Son of God.  He’s worthy therefore to be worshipped. 

 

“I’m the Judge of the world”

 

Verses 24-30, “Most assuredly I say to you, he who hears my word and believes in him who sent me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment but has passed from death into life.  Most assuredly I say to you, the hour is coming and now is when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.  For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself, and has given him authority to execute judgment also because he is the Son of man.  Do not marvel at this, for the hour is coming which all who are in the graves will hear his voice and come forth, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who done evil to the resurrection of condemnation [Greek: krisis, decision].  I can of myself do nothing, as I hear I judge.  My judgment is righteous because I do not seek my own will, but the will of the Father who sent me.”   Clearly, clearly he’s saying “I am the judge”, he is saying that he is God, because this is only something that God can do.  And God the Father has given this authority to God that Son.  Well he continues to defend his claim.  Now he’s sited the things that he presently does, but he also now sites the things that he will do in the future.  And as we’ve already noted, mainly that of being judge, in the future, judge of the earth.  So as judge he says there in verse 24, “Most assuredly I say to you, he who hears my word and he who believes in him who sent me, has everlasting life….” Therefore, as the judge, if you believe in me you’ll have everlasting life….  ”and shall not come into judgment” because he is the judge “but has passed from death into life..”  Again, if you’re here today without Jesus Christ, understand it’s that easy.  I mean, that’s it.  It’s to believe, truly believe, put your faith in Jesus Christ, and as you put your faith in Jesus Christ, you will have everlasting life, and you’ll not be judged.  You’ll pass from death to life.  Now passed from death to life refers of course to spiritual life especially, but also you think of the Book of Revelation, verse 6 of chapter 20, saying that over the second death, the “second death has no power over those who are in Christ, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.”  And then later in chapter 20, referring to those without Christ, then death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire, this is the second death, and then it goes on to say ‘all those without Christ will be cast into the lake of fire, meaning eternal death, eternal separation from God.  Where as the judge and giver of life, Jesus says, verse 25, “Most assuredly the hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.”  We see examples of those physically dead.  He goes on later in the Gospels, he resurrects a boy in a coffin, he speaks to him, a young girl, he speaks to her [and they both come back to life], and then he shouts “Lazarus, Come forth!” [and Lazarus comes back to life after four days in the grave].  But especially he’s referring to those that are spiritually dead, and were spiritually dead without Christ.  As Paul says in Ephesians chapter 5, “Therefore he says, ‘Awake you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.’”  That is those without Christ, those without Christ are spiritually dead.  They’re separated from God.  And if we stay that way, and do not turn to him, the Bible teaches that we will experience the second death, which is to be thrown into the lake of fire, to be judged and under the wrath of God, and to be eternally separated from God.  Verse 27, I know we’re coming close to our time.  Jesus is the Judge, he’s given him authority to execute judgment because he is the “Son of man.”  Of course, in Daniel, that is a Messianic title that he uses there, “Son of man.”  So he’s the Savior, the Savior for those of us here today, who believe, and then in the future he will be the judge.

 

There are only two major resurrections

 

Verses 28-29, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation [Greek krisis, decision].”   Verse 29, he says, “Don’t marvel at this, the hour is coming when all who are in there graves will hear his voice,” referring to those who are physically dead.  And they’ll come forth, some to the resurrection of life, and as we quoted that passage in Revelation, some to the resurrection of condemnation. [Comment:  “Condemnation” or in the King James the word “damnation” at the end of verse 29 is a very poor translation of this word.  Condemnation or damnation should instead be translated decision.  The Greek word used is krisis, which means decision.  As we saw before, the Jews have a belief that is quite Biblical, about those three keys that God has, and the third key is the key of death and life.  If that major resurrection back to physical life in Ezekiel 37:1-14---where in verses 12-13 God promises to put the Holy Spirit in those that are resurrected back to life---is coupled to the other major resurrection prophecied in Revelation 20:5,11-13, which this pastor skipped over, then a whole new meaning and interpretation has to be rendered toward this resurrection to krisis or decision.  Christians need to properly add to their New Testament understandings some of the proper Biblical understandings the Jews have about their own Old Testament.  In Revelation 20:5, 11-13, God says all the unsaved dead will be resurrected in a massive physical resurrection.  Most Christians then assume, by going right to the next verse, verse 14 of Revelation 20, that all those unsaved dead are then thrown into the lake of fire, without bothering to add inbetween verse 13 and 14 the verses of Ezekiel 37:1-14, which would alter the interpretation of Christianity about the “unsaved dead” radically.  The Jews know things we don’t about their Scriptures, and we know things they don’t about the New Testament Scriptures, and as a result of a natural animosity between the Jews and Christians, both seem to lack a basic and vital understanding of how the two major portions of the Bible should properly modify our interpretations.  This won’t really matter, because what we believe about hell, eternal death, the second death, will not effect our salvation one bit, it is secondary knowledge, as proved by the fact that many respected denominations differ widely on their interpretations about heaven, hell and eternal rewards.  If we, or even all Christendom is wrong on how they interpret Revelation 20 and the second death, that will be straightened out when Jesus comes back.  See http://www.unityinchrist.com/plaintruth/battle.htm for some unique insights.  One writer, a well-educated  Baptist businessman, attended a Reform Jewish synagogue’s Bible study for over four years, as they studied through the Torah.  He then wrote a book about the amazing revelations he came to understand from this wonderful Jewish Bible study.  His book is titled The Gospel According to Moses.  To order a copy, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/messianicmovement/The%20Gospel%20According%20to%20Moses.htm ]  Those that will be raised to the resurrection of life, to have eternal life, are those who have done good.  And to the resurrection of condemnation, those who have done evil.  Now this isn’t teaching that we are saved by what we do, if you’re a good person then you’re saved, and if you’re a bad person you’re not.  Very clearly the rest of Scriptures show us you’ve done good because Christ is in you.  You only can do true good if the Holy Spirit is doing it through you.  That is the only way.  But John chapter 6, verse 29, Jesus said to them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in him who was sent’, that’s the only work we’re to do is to believe [and a lot of that belief, or faith also comes from the Holy Spirit].  And then in Ephesians Paul says “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”  So it’s not the works that save me, but the works of the fruit of salvation [i.e. the fruit of the Holy Spirit].  That is what he is referring to here.  So when somebody who is not in Christ professes to be in Christ, if there isn’t the works, then there’s a problem.  But if Christ is in me, there will be the works, very clearly, because the Holy Spirit is working.  “I can do nothing of myself” he says in verse 30, “as I hear I judge, and my judgment is righteous.”  “I do not seek my own will”, he says, “but the will of the Father who sent me.  And that is true of every day of his life.  He did the will of the Father, and we see in Luke chapter 22, verse 42 especially, he says “Father if it is your will” there before the cross in the garden there, knowing the cross is before him, “Father if it is your will, take this cup away from me, nevertheless not my will but your will be done.”  Let’s read to the end of the chapter, and we’ll note these four witnesses that prove the claim of Christ.

 

Jesus gives four witnesses that prove his Messiahship

 

“If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.”  So he’s speaking, he’s defending himself.  And of course, understanding the Judaic teaching, there needed to be two or three witnesses.  So he goes on.  There’s a bunch of witnesses.  But here’s a few.  “There’s another who bears witness of me, and I know that the witness of which he witnesses of me is true.  You have sent to John, and he has born witness to the truth.  He was the burning and shining lamp, and you were willing for a time to rejoice in his light.  But I have a greater witness than John’s, for the works which the Father has given me to finish, the very works that I do bear witness of me that the Father has sent me.  And the Father himself who sent me has testified of me.  You have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his form.  [Comment:  Right here, Jesus has just identified himself as Yahweh, the God of the Old Testament.  Both Moses and Elijah saw God’s form, and heard his voice.  So this I AM, Yahweh, must have been the pre-existent Jesus Christ, the Logos, Word, and not God the Father.]  But you do not have his word abiding in you, because whom he sent, him you do not believe.  You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life, and these are they which testify of me.H

  But you’re not willing to come to me that ye may have life.  I do not receive honor from men, but I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you.  I have come in my Father’s name and you do not receive me.  If another comes in his own name, him you will receive.  How can you believe who receive honor from one another and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God?  Do not think that I shall accuse you to the Father, there is one who accuses you, Moses, in whom you trust.  For if you’d believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me.  But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words.”  (verses 31-47)  Well he continues to defend his claims, and he sites the evidence of four significant sources of witness.  But he says “If I bear witness of myself, the witness is not true.”  Numbers chapter 35 and Deuteronomy chapter 17 show that there needs to be multiple witnesses, and certainly in this instance.  And he understood that rabbinical understanding. 

1. Witness of John the Baptist:  So he goes on and he sites four significant witnesses, beginning with John the Baptist in verse 35.  “He was the burning and shining lamp, and you were willing for a time to rejoice in his light.”  He came in darkness and shared and pointed to the light, and gave light.  Initially, as you see here, it says “You were willing for a time to rejoice in his light.”  So he says clearly that as even these religious leaders, they enjoyed his light for a season, the popularity, maybe the way he was, some of the things that he said.  But in time, obviously, they began to hate him.  But they enjoyed his light.  And he [John the Baptist] just pointed to Jesus.  Clearly he said “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”  They were attracted initially to that light, sort of like bugs that come to a light, and then are burnt by the light, you know.  That’s sort of their experience.  And I think of my screen door, you know we live on a hill and there’s country, woods around us.  And if I leave on the little front door light, man, you come in at night, in fact, sometimes you inhale these little critters, and you swallow some of these little critters [laughter], and it’s quite the little experience, you open that door as quick as you can to get through it, because they’re just all over because of that light.  And then they’re all over the ceiling when you come in, and they go all over our house.  So, they were like that, they were attracted to the light, but in the end they didn’t believe in the light.  But light is good, light is good, we rejoice in the light, light in our lives.  Light is important.  I know just recently I was at home on a Friday night, my wife was at a Bible study, and our power went out.  And as it went out, with my three children, I appreciate at that moment especially, I appreciated light.  Where we lived there were no street lights, you couldn’t see a thing.  So, we were looking around for candles, trying to find candles, and we didn’t have any matches, so they didn’t do us any good.  [laughter]  Thought of the Boy Scout thing, my son even asked me about it, you know, ‘How do you do that Boy Scout thing?’   No matches, found two flashlights, needed D batteries, only had C batteries, that’s all we had, so put C batteries in, had some dim light.  So my kids clung to me because of the darkness.  In fact, they go to bed earlier than I do, but I had to go to bed with them, we had to sleep in the same room because they were scared of the dark.  There wasn’t much light.  But it is kind of different when there’s no light at all.  So they rejoiced in the light.  Light is good, light in your life is good.  Light in my life, in my home is good, especially spiritual light, the life and light that Jesus Christ gives.  And John was this burning and shining light, and as Christians when we leave, may we all the more be a burning and shining light, that is for sure. 

2.  Witness of Jesus’ works:  Well the next significant witness, he notes, is his works.  We’ve talked about that.  But the very things he did, and I just want to quote to you from Josephus, Josephus, possibly not a Christian, but a Jewish historian.  Not necessarily was a Christian, but was a secular, a Jewish historian, he writes about Christ and his claims.  Josephus, born in AD 37, was employed by the Roman government, and later he became close friends of two emperors, Vespacian and Titus.  But he writes in “The Book of the Antiquities of the Jews”, book 18, chapter 3, this is what he says about Jesus, this is a Jewish scholar, historian at that time.  “Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man.  For he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure, he drew over to him many Jews and also many of the Greeks.  This man was the Christ.  And when Pilate had condemned him to the cross, upon his impeachment by the principle man among us, those who had loved from the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive on the third day.  The divine prophets having spoken these and the thousands of other wonderful things about him, and even now the race of Christians so named from him has not died out.”  That’s Josephus, writing in that time, about this man, ‘Can you even call him a man?’  He did wonderful works [cf. Isaiah 35:4-6a].  So Jesus says that.  The truth is a part of history, he did these works.  And the works themselves, John will write about seven works, seven signs.  We saw the first one in chapter 2, water being turned to wine.  We saw in chapter 4, the nobleman’s son being healed, then we saw in chapter 5, the lame man at Bethesda, and the next chapter the feeding of the 5,000, the chapter after that, Jesus will walk on water and calm the storm.  Chapter 9 he will heal a blind man, in chapter 11 he will raise Lazarus, seven signs in the first half of this book that John shows and gives to prove Jesus is the Messiah.  He gives those to prove that Jesus is indeed the Son of God.  And then he gives an 8th sign, which he focuses on in the 2nd half of the book, the entire second half, and that is the sign that Jesus rose from the dead, the greatest sign. 

3.  Witness of God the Father:  Well, the next significant witness, verse 32 and verse 37 is the Father himself.  Clearly at times the Father said, and people even heard it at times, “This is my beloved Son, this is my beloved Son”.  The Father gave clear evidence, testified himself that Jesus was the Son.  And when he says what he says there in verse 37, “Ye have neither heard his voice at any time”, he especially is referring to the Spirit of God.  [Comment: That last sentence is debatable.  Jesus may be referring to the fact that nobody had seen or heard God the Father, in any form, before this time when Jesus arrived on earth.  I personally lean to the interpretation that nobody up to the time of Jesus’ arrival on earth had seen or heard God the Father.]  And you’re here this morning, and maybe you’re without Christ, and the Holy Spirit is speaking to you.  Do you hear the Holy Spirit?  Not Steve himself, not me, but do you hear God speaking to your heart?---speaking to you, Jesus revealing himself to you?  Saying, “Turn to me, I am the Son of God, I have come to give you life, life abundantly.” 

4.  Witness of the Scriptures:  Well, as we come to the end of our time, the last witness is the Bible, the Word of God.  But real sadly, in verse 39, he says ‘You guys search the Scriptures, man you know every dot and tittle, but you miss the whole meaning of it.  You’re looking to it for your own religious system, for your own religious purposes, but you miss the message, and the message of the Word of God.  He says, “For in them you think you have eternal life, and they testify of me.”  And later, Jesus will be walking with some men in Luke chapter 24, verse 27, and from Moses and all the prophets he’ll expound the Scriptures to them and show them.  Indeed, the volume of the Book, he said to them in another place, the volume of the Book has spoken of me.  We know that some have said that Jesus fulfilled 300 prophecies, prophecies of the Messiah, he came and fulfilled them.  [To see many of those prophecies, log onto http://www.unityinchrist.com/prophecies/1stcoming.htm.]  And the chance of somebody fulfilling only 8 prophecies, the chance of that is one in ten to the 17th power.  Put a decimal point and 17 zeros going to the right, and then a one [0.00000000000000001], basically impossible to fulfill 8 prophecies.  He fulfilled all 300.  And that’s the historical truth.  And it’s clear, we have, we’ve found discoveries of these parchments that have the very words in them before Christ [the Isaiah Dead Sea Scrolls], even secular people will say ‘This existed before.’  And he came and did these very things.  But he says in verse 40, this is all the evidence, you’ve heard all the evidence, but he says “You’re not willing to come to me, that you might have life.”  That really is the deal.  It isn’t that God has to prove himself, Jesus has to prove these things, the real bottom line is people aren’t willing to look at the proof.  When you’re willing, you come.  When you want to have life, when there’s humility and not pride and you want to know God, you’re willing.  But he says ‘You’re not willing.’  And because they’ve not received the Word and truth, then received God, he says “They don’t have the love of God in them.” (verse 42)  And that’s proof, man.  When the love of God is in you, love for God, passion for God, love for others, that’s proof that you know Christ.  “Don’t think”, he says, “I accuse you” (that’s like in the sense of a courtroom) he says, ‘for he who wrote about me is even Moses.’  ‘Moses whom you esteem, he spoke about me’, passages like Deuteronomy 18, verse 18 and others clearly point to Jesus Christ.  Well let’s close in prayer.  [transcript of a sermon on John 5:16-47, given somewhere in New England.] 

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