John

He Knows Us

304_HE KNOWS YOU.jpg

If you’ve read the Bible, when it comes to humanity, you know that God cares most about what is in our heart. Yes, he wants our obedience, he wants our praise and he wants our dedication, but if we give him these things with the wrong heart, he’d prefer that we not offer them to him at all. It is amazing how well God knows us. He knows our motives, he knows our intent, and he knows when we are trying to hide what is truly in our heart. But Jesus knew that too, even when he walked the earth. It says in John 2:24-25: 

“But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. He did not need man’s testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.”

When I read about how Jesus handled himself with the Pharisees and how he avoided the verbal traps they set for him, I am always amazed - and rightly so. It was as if Jesus literally knew what they were thinking, because in truth, he did. There are several times where we read in the Bible that Jesus knew what others were thinking and he responded accordingly. This would mean that Jesus possessed a supernatural ability to know the thoughts of men and the hearts of men while he walked the earth. And if that is true, how much more does he know us since he has returned to glory and sits at the right hand of the Father? I encourage you to consider just how well God knows you.

---

Jesus knows each one of us more deeply than anyone on this earth knows us. He knows our complete past and he is aware of all of our weaknesses. He even knows how many hairs we have on our head! And in John, we learn that he knows our heart, our intent and he even knows our thoughts. But more than that, he is physically close to us. The Bible tells us that he lives inside of us, and that he’ll never leave us or forsake us. So God knows us intently. He knows us better than we know ourselves. And in spite of that, he still loves us intensely. I hope that both challenges and encourages you; that it challenges you to remember that there is nothing we can hide from God, but encourages you because regardless of that, he still loves us.

Know God

303_KNOW GOD.jpg

The concept of the Holy Trinity can be difficult for us to wrap our minds around. How can three distinct entities, or personalities, be considered one? How can God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit all be one and the same God? This notion may be challenging for us to comprehend today, but consider how confusing it must have been for the people of Jesus’ day. They had a hard enough time accepting him as the Son of God. But Jesus tried to explain it to his disciples in John chapter 14, verse 7, which says: 

“If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

He also says in chapter 10, verse 30:

“I and the Father are one.”

Jesus explains to Thomas that by seeing him he has, in affect, seen the Father. He says that because he and the Father are one, just as the Holy Spirit and the Father are one. The equation that 3 = 1 doesn’t make sense to us. That’s just not how traditional math works. Nevertheless, it is very true. So if we know Jesus, then we know the Father. And since we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us, we actually have God living inside of us. I challenge you to consider this truth today. By knowing any part of the Trinity, you know God.

---

Do you know God? Jesus tell us that if we know him then we know the Father because he and the Father are one; three entities that have different roles but are all the same God. God the Father is our Sovereign Lord; he is our provider and our stronghold. The Bible tells us that Jesus is our advocate to the Father; that he sits at the right hand of God. And we know that the Holy Spirit is our Counsellor; that he lives inside of every believer. There are a list of roles and titles attached to each one of the Trinity working in concert as one distinct God. I don’t know about you, but that breaks my brain. We don’t have to fully understand it, and we may never fully understand it this side of heaven, but we are called to believe. We must have faith in this truth. Do you know God today? If you know the Trinity, then you do. Because God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are one.

Never

299_NEVER.jpg

If you are a believer in Christ today; if you’ve put your trust in him and have given your life to him, and if you call yourself a Christian and a follower of Christ, you should realize that you are who you are in Christ only because the Father drew you unto himself. Sure, he may have used an event, another person, or an experience in your life as a catalyst, but the Bible reminds us that no one can come to a saving knowledge of Jesus unless the Father draws them. Jesus reminds us in John, chapter 6 verse 37, that after that happens he will never drive you away. It says:

“All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.”

In this verse Jesus attests that it is God the Father who gave him those who have come to believe. And Jesus says that he will never drive them away. Isn’t that a comforting feeling? God wants to draw near to us. It is never his intent to drive us away. We may choose to leave him, turn away from him, or distance ourselves from him, but he will never drive us away. So I encourage you to have the same heart toward him as he has toward you. As it is his intent to never drive us away, let it be our intent to never leave him. Remember, God chose you even when you were lost in your sin and drew you to himself. Now that he has, he will never drive you away.

---

When you were young and forced to play sports in gym class were you ever the last person chosen? If you were, that probably made you feel like you weren’t chosen at all. You probably thought, since you were the last one left, your team was forced to take you. Well, it isn’t that way with God. If you are saved by God’s grace, remember that God chose you. Not because you were the last one left. He drew you unto himself because it was his good pleasure to do so. And now that you are his, he will never drive you away. There are more people throughout human history who will find the wide path that leads to destruction than the narrow one that leads to salvation, and you are on the right path because God chose you. I encourage you never to forget that.

Bread of Life

282_BREAD OF LIFE.jpg

What did Jesus mean when he referred to himself as the “bread of life”? The Jews really had a difficult time with that analogy, and for those who don’t understand today, it can be just as confusing. In John, chapter 6 verse 27, Jesus tells them, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.” Then later in verses 47 through 50 he says:

“Very truly I tell you , the one who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, yet they died. But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”

I believe that Jesus uses the bread analogy partially because the Jews were in the midst of discussing the manna that God sent in Moses’ day. Jesus uses that analogy to explain to them that any bread earth can provide is temporary. It may even spoil if we don’t eat it in a timely manner. But Jesus, being the “bread of life”, gives those who partake of him, eternal life. His flesh for bread, and his blood for drink may sound strange to those who don’t understand. But to those of us who do; to those of us who have accepted and have partaken of Jesus’ gift to us, the flesh and blood that he is talking about means our very salvation. If you are new to the Bible, don’t get tripped up with this analogy like the Jews did. Simply put, bread on earth only sustains life on earth. But Jesus will sustain us forever if we believe in him and accept his gift to us.

---

Jesus told his listeners that he is the bread of life. He said that if we eat, or partake, of him, we will live forever. When Jesus died, it was the act of his body being broken and the spilling of his blood that covered our sins, giving us eternal life. When his righteousness covers our unrighteousness, we can stand in the presence of a holy God. So I encourage you, if you haven’t already, partake of Jesus, the bread of life. If you do, you will live forever in heaven with God. But if you don’t, you will experience eternal death, or eternal damnation, in hell separated from God forever.

Eternal Life

271_ETERNAL LIFE.jpg

When you think of “eternal life”, what comes to your mind? Are you thinking of a place where there is no more pain, no more sorrow, and no more fear? Are you thinking of a place filled with angels and other majestic beings that are difficult to imagine? Does your mind show you our God in all his majesty with Jesus sitting at his right hand? What do you think of? Though these things may ring true in eternity, Jesus tells us in John chapter 17 verse 3 what we should focus on when we think of eternity in heaven. He says:

“Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”

I believe that heaven is more than just a place, it is more than what we’ll see, it’s more than what we’ll have and more than what we’ll no longer have to deal with. It is a relationship with God that we’ve never experienced this side of heaven. Jesus says that eternal life is that we may know God and that we may know Jesus. Though we may think we know God now, our understanding of him is like looking through a dark, dirty window. We have an idea of who he is, but there is only so much we can know of, and about, him while we live here on earth. I don’t know about you, but I look forward to being closer to God than I’ve ever been, knowing him in a way that I’ve never known, and worshipping him in ways that I can’t even imagine. That is the heaven I’m looking forward to, and that is the heaven I believe Jesus is describing in John 17.

---

The Bible only gives us hints of what we can look forward to when we die. We have an idea of what both believers will experience and what unbelievers will experience, but as Jesus explains, for those who will have their names written in the book of life, our eternity will mean to “know” him. I don’t think we can truly understand what an amazing reward that will be. I would guess that all other things, or experiences, we will have in heaven will pale in comparison to knowing God. In fact, I’m sure that none of it will matter aside from knowing him. So I would challenge you, if your thoughts on eternal life differ from the one Jesus laid out, I hope you will realign your thinking to what truly matters both in this life and certainly in our eternal life, which is knowing him.

LOMLBlog.jpg