Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Studying God's purpose (John 20:30-31)

This week we are studying the last two verses of this passage, and learning more about John's purpose (really it was God's purpose) for writing his gospel account.

We talked last time about his including only seven "signs" from Jesus' ministry, but that his purpose was so "you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name."

The real focus is not the signs, though. The place where John wants to focus our attention is on the Person, on Jesus. John wants us to know that He is the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of God. He used several words to accomplish this for several people:

              1. Christ (Christos in Greek) would tell the Jewish people about the long-
                  expected Deliverer who would come to free the nation from bondage.
              2. Messiah refers to the Deliverer from sin that was promised in the Old
              3. Son of God would appeal to the Gentiles who might read; for they
                  approached their faith differently from their Jewish neighbors.

John really wanted people who read his gospel account to think deeply and to perceive the theological importance of Jesus' miracles, or signs. Many people today try to ignore, to deny, or to explain away Jesus' miracles. Even in His day, some people attributed them to God, and others called them the works of Satan (Matthew 12:24).

I would think that to ignore, deny, or explain them in that day would have been virtually impossible. For one thing, there were so many! John said, "Jesus did many other miraculous signs" and there are thirty-five different miracles recorded in the four gospels.

John selected carefully the seven that he included. He wanted people to think, and then to believe that Jesus is the Christ, and the Messiah, and is the Son of God.

Many people will casually say, "Oh sure, I know He was." But John' purpose was not just for us to have a casual knowledge, a head knowledge. The intent of the scriptures, inspired by God, is far more than that. It's to convince us, individually, that our souls are sinful, and that we need Jesus as our personal God and Savior. Scriptures aren't just to have us know about Him, they are about waking us up, and having us transfer our trust to Him, accepting His salvation.

Heart knowledge!
So very different.
So very life-changing.
If we will allow it, that heart knowledge will bring us to salvation, and then to sanctification -- that ongoing process of daily growing to be more like Him.

Is God's word accomplishing what the Spirit desires, in our lives? Do we immerse ourselves daily and ask Him to guide us?
Does anyone have some bandaids? I think my own toes got mashed today. (Grin) How about yours?


Belinda said...

Well, pass the bandaids my friend! I pray for that very thing, but then rush off to do my own thing. No wonder He uses means of bringing us back. Some more hash than others at times. But I truzt noever more than what is strictly needed in each case.

Cathy said...

Oh yeah...... I do the exact same thing. My husband calls it "getting a bee in my head". I'll go madly chasing after an idea, without ever pausing to ask if it is God's will that I do it, which frequently leads to trouble. Send on some bandaids up here, too.