Dashing Deals

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

The Light of Men

This morning my verse of the day was from the Gospel of John. I was given John 5:24 as my reading prompt. I truly intended to share it and see where God led me from there. Much to my surprise I ended up typing out much much more than that! You just never know where God is going to lead you when you step out in faith! I pray that as you read the following verses your eyes are opened to the truth within and that understanding is gained!

"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in Himself, even so He gave to the Son also to have life in Himself; and He gave Him authority to execute judgement, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment. I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgement is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent me. If I alone testify about Myself, My testimony is not true. There is another who testifies of Me, and I know that the testimony which He gives about Me is true. You have sent to John, and he has testified to the truth. But the testimony which I receive is not from man, but I say these things so that you might be saved. He was the lamp that was burning and was shining and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light. But the testimony which I have is greater than the testimony of John; for the works which the Father has given Me to accomplish ~ the very works that I do ~ testify about Me, that the Father has sent Me. And the Father who sent Me, He has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time nor seen His form. You do not have His word abiding in you, for you do not believe Him whom He sent. You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me; and you are unwilling to come to Me so that you may have life. I do not receive glory from men; but I know you, that you do not have the love of God in yourselves. I have come in My Father's name and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name you will receive him. How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and you do not seek the glory that is from the one and only God. Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father; the one who accuses you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope. For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?" (John 5:24-47, NASB)

If you want to know the Father better, I sincerely hope you will find a Bible, preferably a study Bible (they help to give much greater depth and detail) and read the Gospel of John on your own. Take it slow. Read until the words begin to make no sense. Pick it back up the next day. Pray to God petitioning Him for favor, insight, and understanding. Ask Him to open your eyes to the truth. Ask that the Holy Spirit come along side you and teach you the word of God so that when you read it for yourself, it comes to life and makes perfect sense. Do this for yourself for I am always praying about this for others. Those that have sincerely asked for the same I have witnessed them having their eyes opened and they have confessed to me that for the first time in their lives, the Bible has come to life in their hands. There is a reason it is called a living document!

So back to my word of the day because I only intended to share the first couple of verses and while I tried to stop typing it obviously was not the will of God for me to do so! As I continued reading and typing I sensed that this post is meant for those who believe they serve God, much like Paul thought he was serving God when he was persecuting the Christians. I don't know who you are, but I know this; the one and only true God, loves you very much!

I often marvel at how people can read the Bible and denounce that Christ is indeed both the Son of God and the Son of Man. As He says, "You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me;" (John 5:39, NASB)

Jesus doesn't quote the exact passages He is referring to in the five books that Moses wrote about, but here is a highlight of one that is recognized as such so that perhaps you yourself might be moved to belief:

"The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you , from your countrymen, you shall listen to him." (Deuteronomy 18:15, NASB)

A few points on this passage before we proceed. Moses tells us that the prophet would be like him and indeed while on the earth Jesus was called by many titles including prophet. Almost everyone of all denominations, knows the story of Moses. I find it interesting that Jesus says
 He will be the one to judge. With that being said, we should sincerely listen to the clues Moses left for us in recognizing the true Messiah! These are the things that Moses and Jesus have in common:

  1. Both received and preached divine revelation and lead their people.
  2. Both were spared death as a baby.
  3. Both renounced a royal court.
  4. Both had compassion on God's people.
  5. Both made intercession for the people.
  6. Both spoke to God face to face!
  7. Bother were the mediators of a covenant!
I do not believe that Mohammed has all of these traits in common with Jesus Christ and Moses. If I am wrong in my thinking on that point, please correct me by sending me an email! I do believe that the Bible and the Quran share the same 5 books of Moses though, so I pray that all who study the Quran pay most attention to the verses that speak and point boldly to Christ Jesus! May their eyes be opened to the truth!

It is so important, like literally a matter of life and death that you come to accept Christ as your Lord and Savior! Not just because believing in Him grants you eternal life, that is huge, but currently we are in this world and without knowing who you are in Christ, you may survive this so called life of yours, but you are not living life abundantly. 

If you go back and reread the verses I shared, you'll notice that Jesus Christ mentions John (the Baptist) and points out that John;  "was the lamp that was burning and was shining and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light."

John had the Spirit of Elijah. His purpose was to prepare the way for Jesus Christ which he did. He was the voice in the wilderness just as was foretold in the Old Testament, which is why the Pharisees actually asked him who he was. All of that deserves so much more depth but it is not the focus of this post. Back to the topic at hand, John the Baptist was indeed a lamp that was burning and shining and the people were drawn to him and they did indeed rejoice for a while in his light. 

While John the Baptist was full of light, he himself was not the life which is the Light of men. That is Jesus Christ. These next Scriptures are all from the Gospel of John and they testify to this truth and more:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who 
believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of flesh nor the will of man, but of God. (John 1:1-13, NASB)

There came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus said to her, "Give Me a drink." For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Therefore the Samaritan woman said to Him, "How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?" (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water."  She said to Him, "Sir, You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep; where then do You get that living water? You are not greater than our father Jacob, are You, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself and his sons and his cattle?" Jesus answered and said to her, "Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life." (John 4:7:14, NASB)

Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal." Therefore they said to Him, "What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?" Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent." So they said to Him, "What then do You do for a sign, so that we may see and believe You? What work do you perform? Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, 'HE GAVE THEM BREAD OUT OF HEAVEN TO EAT.' (Ex 16:11-36) Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world." Then they said to Him, "Lord, always give us this bread." Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst." (John 6:27:35, NASB)

Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, "I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life." (John 8:12, NASB)

Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. (John 14:6, NASB)

There is so much more that would blow your mind in the Gospel of John if you read it, but these verses alone make what C.S. Lewis said in his book, Mere Christianity, one of my all time favorite quotes by man on who Jesus is:

“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”  (C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)

When you take the time to think about that truth, God would not have allowed Jesus to do so much in His name if Jesus was not indeed who He said He was. Christ said some things that should make one sit up and take notice! What I have shared today isn't near all I wanted to share. To be quite honest, if it were up to me, and allowed, I would have typed out the entire first 16 chapters! There are so many amazing testimonies of signs and wonders that are only found in the Gospel of John.

It is certainly a great place to begin in your search to discover who Christ Jesus is for yourself.

Don't allow the world to tell you who Christ is. Don't let anyone who is not a true follower persuade you into thinking that the word of God is not the real deal and don't let them sway you into thinking that Jesus was simply a Prophet. That is merely one of the title that others gave Him. Who He truly is is our mediator, our Lord and our Savior.

The greatest one can do for another is to give up their life for a friend. Jesus gave up His life for all creation. The BIG question is this, "Are you willing to give up your life for Him?"

I can promise you this, those who do live an abundant life on earth. That is not to say that they have an easy road. Oh no, much the opposite. Often their lives are shown to be full of trials and tribulations! The difference between those who believe and those who don't boils down to this:

Those who lean on the Lord find rest and peace and joy right in the midst of turmoil and chaos! That to me is abundance. This world is full of people riddled with anxiety, fear, worry, stress, anger, jealousy, etc. These are the ones we believers need to be praying for. They are still in slavery. 

It often slays me when I see soundbites claiming that the Bible supports slavery! If you are living in sin then you my friend are enslaved today! You may not see it that way today, but I profess to you that this is an absolute truth! It is so freeing to lay down all your sins at God's feet. To repent and admit that we err daily. NO ONE IS WITHOUT SIN. This too is proven again and again and again in Scripture. However, when you come to the point where you truly repent with a God like sorrow, and ask God for His will to play out in your life, I am warning you to buckle yourself in because you are in for the journey of a lifetime. When you get here you will understand just how enslaved you once were. Don't forget that and return to the ways of the world. Instead, keep your focus on the truth. Arm yourself with the word of God. Read Ephesians to gain greater understanding of how to live life and how to protect yourself against the powers of darkness. That will be the topic of my next book!

It is crazy for me that in typing this for the world today, God drew me in and before I knew it I had read the first 16 chapters of the Gospel of John throughout the day! What was revealed to me while reading would fill pages and it was all I could do to refrain from including so many other incredible things that Jesus did, but again it was obvious to me that those verses were not for me to include in this post. 

With that being said, I pray that what I have shared today gives you cause and curiosity to search the Scriptures for yourself! I leave you with this picture I took while in Nevada. 

Wendy, walks with God, Mother of Many

© Wendy Glidden, 2016

**The MacArthur Study Bible, John MacArthur, NASB, Updated Edition, 2006, Thomas Nelson

"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE, © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockamn Foundation. Used by permission."

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