Saturday, August 2, 2014

JEWELS from the GOSPEL of JOHN - ALL GOD's CHILDREN: JOHN 1:11-13

The following is a series of short exhortations, brief commentary and writings to convey thoughtful meditation on God's Word. I have chosen the Gospel of John as the subject. These articles will not run contiguously on this blog but peppered throughout and in the midst of other articles (though some might be posted consecutively). I pray that these will be a blessing and an edification for the saints.



JOHN 1:11-13
11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
12 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:
13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
If the Old Testament could be likened unto a symphony, each of the books, from the Torah, to the Psalms and the prophets could be presented as thematic movements that incorporated into the whole orchestration a sense of building momentum and expectation. One could sense the oncoming crescendo about to explode at any moment, when suddenly, after the musical movement of Malachi . . . all goes silent.
That silence prophetically speaking lasted about 400 years! No prophet appeared to Israel all during that time until the coming of John the Baptist . . .
And then with a flourish and a glorious cascade of musical wonder, the entire orchestra, conducted by the LORD God Himself erupts in an awe-inspiring piece that reveals the Messiah of Israel! The very One that the Scriptures point to (JOHN 5:39) appeared to "His own" people Israel, keepers of the holy oracles of God (ROM. 3:1-3) and after waiting so long a time for their Messiah King, they rejected Him! They "received Him not"! 
This was a wonder to me when I first read the Bible, but I was also taught that this was already prophesied; such passages as Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 spoke eloquently of the suffering Messiah, just like other passages viewed Him as a conquering Messiah (such as ISAIAH 63:1-3 and PSALM 2). Some rabbincal writings saw the contrast between these two aspects of suffering and conquest so sharply that they concluded that there must be two Messiahs: the Meschiach ben Yosef and the Meschiach ben Dawid. What they hadn't considered is that there is in fact, one Messiah, with a two fold mission: the One Who would come humbly as the sacrificial Lamb of God (JOHN 1:29, 36) and then to return as the glorious and supreme Lion of the Tribe of Judah (REV. 5:5). 
It's when the LORD Jesus Christ returns to this world, defeats the anti-Christ and his armies at Armageddon (refer to the verses in ISAIAH 63; also 2 THESS. 2:8; REV. 19:19-20) and His feet touch down on the Mt. of Olives - the very spot where He ascended into heaven after His resurrection (How poetic of God! See ACTS 1:9-11) that Israel will receive Him as their King, LORD and Savior (and by faith in Him, the Spirit of the LORD will finally indwell His people according to EZEKIEL 36:26-27)!
Yet between the first Advent of Christ and the second, there is this mystery known as the church (EPH. 5:32), composed of Gentiles and Jews together, no longer separated but becoming a whole new spiritual people (EPH. 2:15). These are souls both repentant and redeemed by our blessed Redeemer! These are the "as many as received Him" as referred to in our text from John . . .
12 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:
There are some Christians that seem to disparage this idea of new birth; they look rather to sacrament (baptismal regeneration, a false doctrine) to explain this phenomena or attribute such things as only a matter of believing faith and negate the actual spiritual dynamic of the indwelling of the Spirit (actually we who are the church are inhabited by the Father and the Son as well; COL. 1:27; JOHN 14:23).
Likewise there are many who mistakenly believe that we are all God's children; and yes, we are all God's creation, but we are a fallen creation because sin entered into the human race via Adam and Eve and so our 'family lineage' as it were with God was severed. Sin in general, like iniquity specifically, will always sever us from the LORD (ISAIAH 59:2) in one way or another. In the case of Adam, his sin condition, his fallen nature was passed onto his children - the only humans who ever came into this world without sin was Adam and Eve! There is only one other exception: The Lamb of God Himself, who was without sin or blemish of any sort (1 PET. 1:19; 2 COR. 5:21).
As we receive Christ by faith, accepting His substitutionary death for our sins, He Who is our sin-bearer - we are indwelt by His Spirit, having all of our sins (past, present and future) forgiven by the washing of His blood (REV. 1:5; 7:14) and are authorized and and declared by God as His adopted children, sealed by the Spirit of God (2 COR. 1:22) and enter into a relationship whereby we call God our Abba Father (ROM. 8:15), the LORD Jesus Christ as our LORD, Redeemer, Elder Brother and Supreme Friend of all friends, and the Holy Spirit as our personal Comforter, Helper and Teacher! We who have "believed on His name" inherit this right, NOT by our own good works, but by the grace (EPH. 2:8-9; TITUS 3:5) - the unmerited of favor of God, as provided for by the LORD Jesus Christ and His dying for our sins on the cross! 

ACTS 4:11-12
11 This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
1 COR. 15:1-4
Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Note that phrase: "believe on His name". This entails far more than intellectual assent to the LORD Jesus Christ, in some sort of philosophical adherence to Christianity. This means far, far more than a mere belief in God's existence (JAMES 2:19). This is a saving faith and belief ON the LORD Jesus Christ; that is, a determined and express decision that by faith one will trust that Jesus Christ is the satisfactory sacrifice (That which is called "propitiation" in Scripture; see ROM. 3:25; 1 JOHN 2:2) that God the Father deems sufficient as payment for our sins. This is the GOSPEL (follow this link and see an awesome presentation!) and one must receive by faith the truth of this message, the truth of the New Testament which is sealed by the blood of Christ (MATT. 26:28). 
Repentance (turning away from a life of sin and placing your heart in God's hands in surrender) and believing the Gospel (MARK 1:15) will bring you from a state of spiritual death and deliver you from membership as one of the children of darkness (EPH. 5:8; 1 THESS. 5:5; COL. 1:13) and created in the heart of the believer a blessed state of spiritual life (JOHN 1:4; 14:6) and membership as children of light and the kingdom of God (JOHN 3:3-5).
We are the children of God, born again, directly as a result of God's intentional will (see vs. 13 of our text)! AMAZING! If you have not yet received Him: the LORD Jesus Christ personally, then please don't hesitate to do so! For more on the G.O.S.P.E.L. - Gods Omnipotent Salvation Proclaiming Eternal Love/Life, have a look at this article FROM the MIND of FIRE. If you have any questions about the Gospel or life as a Christian, please email me at the address provided on this blog (About Me and Contact Info located on the right hand bar under the GOT VISION video).

May the LORD truly bless and keep you! The next installment will be based on JOHN 1:14-17, and entitled LAW vs. GRACE. Until then, Keep your eyes on the skies and don't believe the lies! Jesus Christ returns soon in the skies! 

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