Gospels-St John 6:36-41 “Power of Resurrection”

What is the liberty of a citizen by human standards? Is he a human first or a nation first to which he owes his liberty and volition? He is in terms of biology composed of trillions of cells all with their specialized function. There also one finds some hundred types of cells, none of which can be called as independent. An individual in terms of the image of God bears comparison: trinity corresponds to his body spirit and soul.

An individual cannot be divided further since his spirit has no lease of life apart from his totality, soul and body of experience. Neither has soul apart from spirit enriching the thinking ‘clayey’ so one may look the ground from which he is fashioned or look upwards to seek stars instead. Whereas nations have always changed hands and their borders have rolled out or rolled back. Recently SCOTUS determined large parts of Oklahoma still belonged to Native American rights and it simply states possession of lands is a matter of temporary arrangement. It is for this reason the Lord God forbade Israel from selling because it belonged to God. An individual bearing the image of God for want of a better legal basis owe his allegiance to God.

Even if one were to place his place in the sun in a secular context gives him liberty to choose what he will. The Holy Spirit has set down what it is to be free. ‘And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.(John 8:32)” In the vv.38 Jesus sets an example. “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” It is what truth in inwards point to and word is not elsewhere but its starting point is from within.”It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it?….But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it(De.30:12-14)”.He came not to do his will but that of his Father. It is true in our case as well. An individual who is truly free shall let his neighbor enjoy same liberty. Thereby he has enlarged himself as well as another by common fount of experience. Where from this tribal mentality come but our own fears playing up to us in spectres that we never thought of. Locals fear migrants taking away their jobs and states fearing the intrusion of Federal intrusions are truly the mentality of slaves. They are prey to their own prejudices and we see nations grinding down to insignificance and no amount of culture wars are going to save them. Jesus Christ came to create a level playing field as God the Father and God the Son enshrine in their fellowship. So glory of God to show each other to advantage.

Thus the Wisdom of the Word becoming flesh is matched by the Power of resurrection.

We have been foreknown and every believer is represented in the fellowship so Jesus Christ is the firstborn from all creation. “And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day(v.39)”. Fellowship of God with Man (in capitals) is Christ the Head and church as the body. He died and rose on the third day and it is the way opened up by him. His promises we see in the last part,’and I will raise him up at the last day(v..40).’ Because Jesus obeyed his Father completely his Wisdom became the bread from heaven so we have no hunger for anything of this world but to attain the same resurrection that took him to his Father’s throne. This power of resurrection shall work in us too. This is true liberty.

36 But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.

37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.

40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

41 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.

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Gospels-St John 6: 28-35 “The true bread from heaven”

The Holy Spirit the third office in Trinity also serves as the revelatory aspect of the Word symbolism of which always sets the visible against invisible aspects of human existence. For example manna from heaven points to true bread from heaven. Similarly light with which we can distinguish light from darkness points to true Light. In Both cases it points to God the Son to distinguish from the Father. He is the Father of lights while the Son is the true light. All these have a common basis which is truth.

This is what we call as the heart of man. “Who hath put wisdom in the inward parts? or who hath given understanding to the heart?(Job 38:36)” A dead man has no life animating him while life which animates a man covers his entire world. He is able to view what goes around him as well as process impressions his senses bring in and judge accordingly. When God has given the Son to have life in himself, it tells of the life of a believer is much more than life created from organic compounds that only explains chemistry. Biochemical processes governing metabolism and information copied from generation to generation (one may assign to molecules) is not static,- and seeing infinite varieties a life form has to choose from, what is seen is not always what you get in the end. Nature and nurture must enter into calculations is it not? How power of life drives the individual to seek truth written in inward parts also varies. The Spirit is the Spirit of truth, and as in-house tutor has a role to glorify the Son. “He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you(16:14)”. God has created man for a higher purpose than eke out a living like every other creature and die. Glorifying God is to be part of the everlasting life that the Son can freely give those who believe in him. In v.29 it is the work of God and not by will of any man. “ Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?/ Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent(vv.28-29)”.

We came across this passage earlier: “Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: “ But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life(4:13-14)”.

Like water we have bread quality of which is altogether different. “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst(v.35)”.

30 They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work?

31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat.

32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.

33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.

33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.

34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.

35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

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Gospels-St John 6:13-29 “Also Ran”

Our world is given to changes and nothing for a sentient being ever stands still. When we say God had foreknown us before the worlds began what do we make of it? There must be a reason for it, is it not?

God is a Spirit. Considering there was nothing remotely akin to a material part as existing when we were in the divine Will and set down in the Salvation Plan of God it stands to reason that as God has known us there must be ways and means to know Him as well as He knows us. All Scripture as god document does that. The Word of God is eternal. We already came across that the Father had given the Son to have life in himself. “And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace(1:16)”. In short our life is entangled with him on a spiritual plane. Our material body undergoes changes from prenatal state in our mothers wombs to death. But the Word says, “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:/ Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God(1:12-13)”.

For a believer our blessed hope is that our lowly bodies shall be transformed into spiritual bodies so we are all part of the Body of Christ.

In our visible world we pursue a career and earn our livelihood and also form the part of a larger context of our community. If we run with others who have no lively hopes as we maintain, should we not give a good account of ourselves to them? Instead of setting our light under a bushel or under the bed we ought set it on the lamp stand instead. In short we ought to better witnesses for our Savior Lord. If we are merely living to earn the praises of men than of God we merely run or make motions with our physical bodies to convince them we also ran with them. In the Parable of the Talents we are taught to be watchful for slothful and unprofitable servants of God there is only condemnation as reward. ‘And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth(Matt.25:30)’. Each believer is a sign and wonder and those who do not bring glory to the Son are like the runners who in a race end up as ‘also ran’. “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway(1 Co.9:27)”

See note under v.29.

14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.

15 When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone.

16 And when even was now come, his disciples went down unto the sea,

17 And entered into a ship, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them.

18 And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.

19 So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the ship: and they were afraid.

20 But he saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid.

21 Then they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went.

22 The day following, when the people which stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was none other boat there, save that one whereinto his disciples were entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples were gone away alone;

23 (Howbeit there came other boats from Tiberias nigh unto the place where they did eat bread, after that the Lord had given thanks:)

24 When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus.

25 And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither?

26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.

27 Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.

28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?

29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

Jesus drew crowd wherever he went. But each one had his own need, priorities and reason. Not all were seeking truth any more than all soil on which the sower cast his seed brought forth same results.”But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold(Matt.13:8)”. God fashioned hearts of men alike is it not? But not all are of same mind. Like the Jews who sought of Jesus a sign it was not the excellence of the word they were seeking but satisfy their curiosity.

Here we read that the crowd followed Jesus to the other side of the sea. Jesus well knew what was in the hearts of men. He said,”Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled./ Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: (vv.25-27)”

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Gospels-St John 6:1-13 “Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes”

Matt.14:13-21; Mk 6:35-44; Lk.9:12-17; and Matt.15:32-39; Matt.16:9-12 “the yeast of the Pharisees and the sadducees”

This miracle finds place in all the four gospels and we shall first go through the version as given by John. In v.5 we read Jesus asking a question,”he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” The occasion called for victuals considering the large crowd. They have been following Jesus for various reasons. It was late. We see faith of Jesus implied there. ‘for he himself knew what he would do.’ Still there was none who could command supply of bread sufficient for such a large gathering. Philip had toted up more than two hundred penny worth of bread and it said for his rational mind. Other disciples were no less convinced as he. Andrew ,Simon Peter’s brother found a young lad, whose name is anonymous but his name is ever found in the book of life and he offered help. ‘There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?’

John in narrating this miracle is setting limit of human understanding. Man counts number in terms of need. Statistics, is not an exact science but for fools when a set of figures cherry picked and tabulated carry conviction with enough jargon and pie charts will do. Economics relying on numbers must be a bad science to simply leave at supply in relation to demand. Two millennia of bad economics has only led to global recession as most educated guesses of economists seem to indicate. Coming in the wake pandemics it packs a punch. Is man wise enough to learn the lessons by his own ingenuity?

All that wealth modern man in the roaring 20s cashed in playing at stocks, overnight saw millionaires coming out obscurity and still playing for higher stakes and do we see it transforming the world? What is the nature of supply in terms of wealth when demand grows exponentially at the turn of easy money, be it a single dollar? Supply and demand of a fool that forgets what it is to be human first is one of lies that keep coming time after time. Wealth evaporated by two world wars produced still more millionaires, new breed of carpetbaggers and has the world learned the lesson? Five barley loaves and two small fishes blessed by God shall feed the hungry and still has enough to spare.

One important lesson is the remains of bread and fishes are gathered up. Each gospel makes mention of it. Nothing like a piece of fish that goes bad as fast as fish in the mideastern heat. Yet we read in vv.12-13,”When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.” Nothing be lost” is more than what the words suggest. Number 12 gives us a clue. Nothing ever done to the Lord shall ever be forgotten. Like the anonymous boy he ever stands as a memorial and it is from the earth as 24 elders are set down in heaven. “And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward(Matt.10:42)”.”As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country(Pr.25:25). Gospel of God is sent to slake the thirst of a hungry soul on earth. It shall in no wise lose its reward in its back wash.”So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it (Is.55:11)”. How does the earth prosper but by knowledge of the Holy? Service of the little one was merely five loaves of bread and two fishes. Economics taught by God is simply this:”For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.(Matt.13:12)”

After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias.

And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased.

And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples.

And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh.

When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?

And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.

Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.

One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, saith unto him,

There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?

10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.

11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.

12 When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.

13 Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.

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Gospels-St John 5:33-48 “Testimony of the Word”

The Law which is eternal refers to the Word. The Logos aspect (1:1) that St John began with is a simple assertion the gospel has no other basis than that ‘the Word was in the beginning and the Word was God’. So there cannot another gospel, the sound of which has gone forth. It is what we read in Ps.19:3,”There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.” We examined the voice of the Son of God in an earlier post. This is consistent from the first book to the last. Thus when the Book of the Revelation begins with Association of Father-Son and it governs the transmission of it. It is through his prophets, and angel of his presence to which v.1 refers, ‘signified it by his angel unto his servant John.’ (It is significant that John introduces an angel sent to the pool at Bethesda to heal man at random).

Gospel whether oral or verbal, the touchstone of it is the truth of holiness of God and the Name of the risen Christ who perfected the will of his father. It is to this St Paul warns in his epistle to the Galatians, “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed./ As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed(Gal.8-9)”. Paul or Barnabas being human could change his opinion. But the truth that endorses Gospel of God is the very foundation of the kingdom of God.”Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his(2 Ti.2:19)”.

When Jesus asks his detractors, “But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?(v.49) we can follow the rationale. God in his Power and Wisdom had known the very depths of the rebellious house of Israel. He did know them that were his. Why did he then send the Son, one may ask? In vv.37-till the end we have a list of the extent of their backsliding.’But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you’ of this Prophet Isaiah also had spoken.”Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:(Is.29:13).” Love of man who withdraws at the first rebuff of a woman is (of) a faint hearted lover and ‘only brave hearts win Lady love’ is a truism according to ways of the world. But God is Love and such divine quality is shown that He would not spare His only begotten Son. In the Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen we have this line,’I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him(Lk.20:13)”.

God has entrusted all judgment to the Son.”For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:/ That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him./ Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation;(vv.22-24). He sent his Son so that the nation may at last repent and come to their senses.

The Book of Psalm carries the blessedness of meditating upon the word of God but its significance was lost on them.’Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path(Ps.119:105)’ It was only good as far as the Pharisees and scribes would use it to catch a woman in the act of adultery than for the saving of their souls. Their literalism was different than what Jesus mentions here of the word abiding within. Symptomatic of their failure was in their seeking honor from man than from God.’How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?(v.44) Pastor Robert Jeffress and his ilk seem to have made a fine art of honoring their POTUS, so honor in return may be their reward.”And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward(Matt.6:5)”.

33 Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth.

34 But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved.

35 He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.

36 But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.

37 And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

38 And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.

39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

41 I receive not honour from men.

42 But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you.

43 I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.

44 How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?

45 Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust.

46 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me; for he wrote of me.

47 But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?

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Gospels-St John 5:26-30 “Life in Himself”

When Jesus says “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me(14:6) each aspect of it is a commentary on himself and also points to God the Father. We have come across this verse before,”And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven(3:13). By way we are not tracking a path pioneers would have first cleared in a pristine wilderness where no human has ever gone before. It draws us, instead to our source or the divine Will and the Word. Let us create man in our image was first in the mind of God and the steps leading to it are all landmarks which only Power and glory of God could conceive. Separation of light from darkness is inextricably linked with it and so is heaven. Five days in the creation calendar are contextual references associated with it. The Son was ever present so we shall lastly add the creative wisdom of the Word,” All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made./ In him was life; and the life was the light of men(1:3-4)”. Jesus as the true Light is the life of God ‘Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see:(1 Ti.6:16)”. This life is the glory of God that visible part of immortal God. In vv.26-27 we have life which is the Son has a specific significance. Consider this expression ‘so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself.’ In order to explain this we only need look at the way Jesus transfigured before his disciples on the mount. His body answers to the aspect of the Word became flesh and the glory is the life of the Father. Both aspects well meet in him. On one part he was subject to the weakness that flesh and blood is heir to. However he did no sin and knew no sin. It is truth glory of which is the DNA of godhead and Mercy. Because he has life in him by his own right he is perfect for our needs, ‘For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted(He.2:18)’.  

In vv.28-29 we have the judgment aspect. Because of his full measure in his deity and humanity his judgment shall be just. Since he is truth he cannot deny himself. In v.29 as usual the case is time element is God’s Time. When Jesus died and rose again we read in the gospel account that graves were open(Matt.27:52) and it points to the great White Throne judgment.

For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;

27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,

29 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.

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Gospels-St John 5:20-33 “The voice of the Son of God”

At the city of Nain Jesus saw a funeral procession and he ‘came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise./ And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother(Lk.7:14-15)”. What was he but the Word in flesh? All those who heard him did not have to look elsewhere but knew where the sounds came from. Humanity of Jesus had its own timbre in his voice and his Aramaic rise and flow of words would have stamped his human aspect.Yet it was the voice of the Son of God. What made it all hang together as natural was faith. Faith of God and man has a common centre or Source, The Word. So when he stops the procession to speak to the dead what do we see there? Faith is it not?

Like miracles our nature is insufficient to connect the dots of his voice to the Father; all the more at a loss to believe that dead would have heard him. But it happened right before their eyes. A rational man may not believe it and is is not how God looks at death. ‘Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God(Matt.22:29). God is the God of the living. The Voice of the Lord by the same token was the voice Jesus made manifest by faith. It is how the Gospel of God is the Authority of the Father which in the manner he completed as the Son of man makes the Gospel of Christ. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live(v.25). What awaits them is either or and nothing in between. He shall not be calling any nations by name but man. ‘they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation’. This is what separation of light from darkness in the creation account opened up (Ge.1:3)

The word forever settled in heaven makes a connection with the earth where the Word revealed is gospel beginning from the Source God the Father God the Son, apostles believers all associates in the reconstituted Time of God. “For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.” This is what the Gospel of St Luke shows us. Similarly how he healed the man by the pool of Bethesda is yet another example.

 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.

21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.

22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:

23 That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.

24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;

27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,

29 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.

30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

31 If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.

32 There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.

33 Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth.

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Gospels-St John 5:16-19 “Work of God”

What is the work of God?

“Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent(John6:29)”.Here we have Jesus answering those who asked Jesus a question. Believing on whom God has placed his seal ‘for him hath God the Father sealed(v.27)’ is work of faith. So faith with which God framed the worlds by the word of God throws light on faith of a believer as well as on Jesus Christ. Faith works as Jesus testified, ‘My Father works hitherto, and I work’ cannot be the sabbath day that the Jews made much of. Perception of Jews was at fault. In the previous post we examined miracle from human perception was different from that of God.

God rested from his labors at the seventh day is referring to the seal of approval already cited in v.29. ‘I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee(Ps.2:7). God rested from his work fully assured of the Son fulfilling his work in tandem with His. Thus the Father Son relationship is about Fellowship of God with Man. The Father and the Son works in tandem and it is what he mentions in v.19 “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.”

Consider this verse from the Psalm: “Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.” Before his Ascension Jesus gave his disciples the Great Commission and ended it saying ‘Lo I am with you always.” Jesus Christ works from heaven while the gift of Holy Spirit on all flesh that believe in his name create by principle of Association his field of work. It is to which God shall enter into rest.

“All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth./ Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:/ Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matt.28:18-20)” It is this rest we are called to enter. True sabbath indicates eternity.

16 And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.

17 But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.

18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.

19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

 

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Gospels-St John 5:1-15 “Miracle By the Pool”

A miracle is not according to common belief an act going against the nature and this perception owes to our insufficient understanding of it. Prophet Elisha had a better understanding of it and we can understand the problem from his prayer and its aftermath. The prophet said, “Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha(2 Ki.6:17)”. The problem of perception is not physical but of faith.

We see indeed what we want to see and not how God sees it. When God set out to create the worlds, by human standards there was nothing. “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear(He.11:3)”.

Here we have the Word and God in the beginning(John1:1). Power and Wisdom of God as One set about creating the worlds and faith is quality so the word is not merely sound but Holiness of God in expression. This is what the writer to the Hebrews means by the expression ‘framed by the word of God.’

Faith is one (Ep.4:5-6). When St Paul says,’faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Ro.10:17)’, it operates in man and it is the gift of God. Otherwise the sentence does not make sense. Prophet Elisha prayed to the Lord to open the servant’s eyes and it is what we call eye of faith. In an earlier post we had discussed the instances of the brazen serpent and double portion of Elisha’s spirit transferring to Prophet Elias on account of it. Miracle is a matter of perception that can only be settled by faith and not by rational thinking. When man uses the same faith given from above to glorify God it reflexive functionalism of God. The miracle of Jesus by the pool of Bethesda leads us to it. Unless it were not so what chance had the man palsied for 38 years to lie there all those years but for faith? He did not know who Jesus was and it was not any problem for God who is just. He shall not be deterred by man who leaves the weak and infirm to suffer. In healing him we see another aspect of Holiness of God. He creates a level playing field. Judgements of God are not to make a full end but give faith in man set about restoring an order themselves.

‘Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee(v.14). What is sin? Anything that is not done in faith is sin. when you have an occasion to do good how often we find man he denies it because of partisan spirit? Black lives Matter ought not have arisen had every citizen looked not only to his own security and well being but also to others. See Nothing,Hear Nothing Say Nothing do not make a just society but brings all the scum rise to the surface when a pandemic hits. Veterans who do their duty are stymied and eased out because ‘pursuit of happiness’ of one has become the vice of great many. God is not mocked. Faith without works is dead.’Sin no more, lest a worse thing like a blast sweeps away the whole edifice to insignificance.

After this there was a feast of the Jews; and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches.

In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.

For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.

And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.

When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.

Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.

10 The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.

11 He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.

12 Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?

13 And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place.

14 Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.

15 The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole.

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Gospels-St John 4:10-13 “Gift of God”

If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water./…Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:

When we speak of gift we can consider it as life that animates us. Because of it our bodies can carry us wherever we want to go and in good health we hardly feel the pangs of an old body shrinking at the thought of making it through the day. The body has its own version of the story, which one can only compare from his two stages farther apart in years. Life of man blessed with health and circumstances is where life and godliness like two peas in a pod sit in complete harmony and is all the more blessed because it has its perfection. This has its counterpart in heaven and it is what Fellowship of God with Man signifies.

“Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be(Ro.8:7).”Flesh and blood of a man is not in harmony with the spirit. That is what spirit of disobedience under which Adam had forfeited. “For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me(Ro.7:11).” It was a sin for Adam to disobey God. By eating of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil man lost the sense of all-sufficiency that breath of God had instilled in him. Instead of heart simply accepting God in faith his mind instead would want to know. Having dismissed truth in his inward part what scale had he to settle his moral dilemma? “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members(Ro.7:23)”. Law of sin wants what flesh and blood can have, sink its teeth into but in his inner man or heart there is thirst and it is what the preceding verse denotes,”For I delight in the law of God after the inward man(v.22)”. Vain philosophies of man like thorns and briars entangle him and life of the senses distract him from a path he knows well is in his best interests. So his members of body are in conflict with thirst that requires attention. Therefore we all well appreciate St Paul’s cry,”O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?(v.24)” Knowing good and evil without coming to truth is like the spiritual thirst is unheeded while his body bites the dust from all that going in circles.

In the chat between Jesus and the Samaritan woman we come across the gift of living water. The difference between this and the water from Jacob’s well is the latter slaked the thirst temporarily as five husbands she has had. Their union only answered her physical needs without addressing her spiritual thirst. What Jesus had to offer the world was much more and it is the gift of his Father. God so loved the world included Love the holiness of God which is eternal as the Word made flesh and union of Christ with the Body. (John 3:16)

“But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life./ The woman saith unto him,Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not,.. (vv.14-15)

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