Classic Christianity – Book of John-p3 (10-16-18)
Bob George continues with his study on the book of John, sharing truth from God’s word that transforms lives with a message of God’s amazing grace. He is now in John 2, and mentions why certain events are in the other synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark and Luke, but not in John. The major focus on John is on the love of God so one will not read about the detailed account of Jesus temptation in the wilderness in John as in the other synoptic gospels. Bob highlights certain events recorded in John concerning in the early life of Jesus, such as the miracle at the wedding in Cana and clearing the temple. Bob emphasized the miracles of Jesus and mentioned it was vital to have proper understanding of the Jews response. Even though many believed in his name, Jesus would not entrust himself to them for he knew what was in a man (John 2:24). Bob asked the question that because they believed in his name, seeing the miracles, does that mean they were saved? Bob mentioned some other topics, such as drinking wine and virgin birth, that are commonly discussed in religious circles. When one add or subtracts from what is clearly written in God’s word, there are serious implications for daily living or even being led into heretical teaching.
As far as the miracle in Cana, Bob thought it important to share that in some circles, it is taught that the miracle in Cana was not creating wine out of water but was really just grape juice. That is erroneous teaching for the word of God clearly indicates that it was fermented drink, or wine. He referred people to other passages in scriptures, such as Proverbs or Ephesians, that becoming drunk is the sin, because then one would not be in control of their mind and would be subject to other spirits.
Ephesians 5:18 5:18
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit,
Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.
Do not join those who drink too much wine
Bob also thought it beneficial, in case someone was inclined to justify drinking of wine at the expense of harm to someone else, to share foundation principles of a believer’s freedom and acting in love, as one living in the Spirit. Neither Jesus nor in common practice in that day would people be getting drunk on wine. Bob briefly mentioned that drinking a bottle of beer is not drinking in moderation. Bob also referred the listener to several scriptures to guide the listener to the proper attitude and conduct before others concerning the choices you make:
1 Corinthians 10:23
“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive.
1 Corinthians 6:12
“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything.
19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.
Bob emphasized that we are to act in love toward one another, and not to use our freedom to cause another brother to fall into sin. That would definitely be the case of someone in his former life, who was addicted to alcohol. Nor should one use your freedom to cause a non-believer to have a reason to blaspheme God because of the choices you make.
Bob also emphasized the need to take God at his word over the persuasiveness or cunning of men. There are some religions that teach Mary was a virgin all her life. By denying the truth of the word of God and holding onto tradition, then what other teaching would one be willing to believe? Some have even been led to believe in heretical teaching that Mary is a co-redeemer with Jesus! How important it is to form doctrine from the word of God rather than the teaching of men and not go beyond what is written.
Bob shared from the following scriptures that Jesus did indeed have natural brothers and sisters. Mary was only a virgin prior to the birth of Christ and did not have sex with Joseph until after Jesus was born. Notice from these scriptures that even Jesus brothers and sisters did not believe in him and even thought he was crazy.
“Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?
Then Jesus’ mother and brothers arrived. Standing outside, they sent someone in to call him.
After this, Jesus went around in Galilee. He did not want to go about in Judea because the Jewish leaders there were looking for a way to kill him. But when the Jewish Festival of Tabernacles was near, Jesus’ brothers said to him, “Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that your disciples there may see the works you do. No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.” For even his own brothers did not believe in him. Therefore Jesus told them, “My time is not yet here; for you any time will do.
20 Then Jesus entered a house, and again a crowd gathered, so that he and his disciples were not even able to eat.When his family heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.”
Bob also reinforced that the New Testament scriptures are indeed God’s word by sharing this passage of scripture.
After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.
This passage provides insight how the scriptures were written down by those who were the disciples of Jesus. The Holy Spirit brought to remembrance everything Jesus had taught them. Are you grateful that the word of God is available to you today in your own language?
Bob also shared how Hollywood can distort people’s perception of truth. Why is it that in the movies John the Baptist is shown as a wild man? Do the scriptures or even common culture in their day even lend to such a thought? Or is that the imagination of those who are in darkness, those inclined to disbelief in Jesus as the Messiah? Why is it that Jesus is often depicted as a wild man, like Rambo in the temple? Yet, if one looks closely at the scriptures, does tipping over the tables give credence to a a wild man? Recall that earlier Bob had shared that even his own brothers and sisters thought Jesus to be crazy. Is that not the natural inclination of man to form erroneous thoughts concerning who Jesus really is? How important it is to form doctrine by reading God’s word, letting the Holy Spirit teach you, rather than from movies, Hollywood, songs or religious traditions distort truth? Do you study God’s word and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you doctrine, what God’s word means?
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