Reflection on John 19:28-42

Scripture

When Jesus had tasted it, he said, “It is finished.” Then he bowed his head and released his spirit.

Observation

Jesus calls out, “I am thirsty,” so someone soaks a sponge in sour wine and holds it up to His lips. Jesus then says, “It is finished.”

The Jewish leaders ask Pilate if they can hasten the deaths of the men crucified by ordering their legs to be broken. When the guards come to Jesus they discover that He is already dead.

Joseph of Arimathea asks Pilate for permission to take down Jesus’ body. He and Nicodemus then lay the body in a nearby tomb.

Application

In Greek, the phrase “It is finished” is just one word. This word has several profound meanings.

1. John tells us just before this that Jesus knew His mission was nearly completed. The words “it is finished” can apply to this mission of redemption. Jesus has fought the battle and is now victorious in securing salvation for all who trust in Him.

2. It can mean “it is completed or fulfilled,” in this case referring to the kingdom of God being established on the earth. Nothing can stop the gospel now- the kingdom is here.

3. The word was often written across a statement of accounts when the final payment was made. The debt of sin has been fully paid, and there is nothing that can be added or needs to be added to it. Jesus is full payment for every sin ever committed.

Jesus’ death on the cross established the kingdom of God on the earth, completed the mission and achieved full payment for our sins.

Prayer

Thank you Lord for paying the full price for my sins. It is finished. I don’t have to worry about being punished or suffering your anger. Hallelujah! Amen.

Reflection on John 3:19-42

Reflection on John 3:19-42

Scripture

“Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have now heard for ourselves. Now we know that he is the Saviour of the world.”

Observation

The woman turns the discussion to where is the right place to worship. Jesus tells her that the time has already come that the Father does not care about where we worship God but that we worship in spirit and in truth.

The disciples return and urge Jesus to eat something. Jesus replies that His food is to do the will of the Father.

Many of the Samaritan villagers believe in Jesus because of the testimony of the woman, More importantly they believe He is the Saviour because they encounter Jesus for themselves.

Application

The woman believes in Jesus because she recognises He is a prophet. He told her her life story then gave a new account of a God who loves everybody and not just the Jews.

She tells her friends who come to see for themselves. They believe in Jesus because of the woman’s testimony. Meeting Jesus for themselves is a different, deeper experience.

John’s story of the expanding kingdom of God is about people encountering Jesus and then taking their testimony of that experience to others who come to see for themselves who Jesus is.

Our personal testimony of Jesus is the greatest tool of evangelism that we have. Nobody can argue with our experience.

Secondly there is an invitation, “Come and see this man who told me everything I have done.” At their own meeting with Jesus He becomes more than an abstract theory but a real person.

People are not saved by hearing a personal testimony but it is a great place to start. Having shared that testimony, we need to pray that they will move on to their own encounter with Jesus,

Prayer

Thank you Lord for saving me from sin. Please help me to share my story and to invite others to come and meet Jesus. Amen.

Reflection on John 3:22-36

Scripture

“No one can receive anything unless God gives it from heaven.”

Observation

Jesus spends some time baptising people. Some of John’s disciples come to John and say that Jesus is getting more baptisms than John is. John replies that Jesus is the Messiah. He, Jesus, must become greater while John becomes less.

Jesus is from heaven and testifies about heavenly thing. John, on the other hand, is from the earth and testifies about earthly things.

Application

When people pursue spiritual gifts or ministries, there can be a tendency to forget that they are gifts or callings given by the Holy Spirit, They can run off at a tangent, chasing an experience of God rather than chasing God Himself.

John’s disciples missed the point about John’s ministry, a mistake made by Jesus’ disciples later. It was not about the number of people being baptised by their group. The point of John’s ministry was to pave the way for Jesus.

Whatever we seek, it only comes as a gift from God, whether we recognise that or not.

This apples in families and businesses also. The top entrepreneurs in the world get to be rich and famous because they worked hard and because God gave them a particular gifting.

Every good gift comes from our heavenly Father. We can do nothing unless God allows it.

So when we pursue something from God, we need to make sure the gift or ministry is not an idol, that is something that becomes more important to us than God Himself.

If we remember that everything is a gift from God, our hearts will be filled with gratitude and thankfulness- a much healthier state than the anger and sense of entitlement that mark much of our society.

Prayer

Than you Lord for every good gift from your hand. Amen.

Reflection on John 1:35-44

The Brick Testament

Scripture
Andrew went to find his brother, Simon, and told him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means “Christ”).

Observation
Two of John’s disciples meet Jesus, and John declares that Jesus is the Lamb of God. The disciples follow Him and remain with Him. One of these disciples is Andrew, who goes off to find his brother, Simon, telling him, “We have found the Messiah.”

The next day, Jesus goes off to Galilee, where He meets Philip and tells him, “Come and follow me.”

Application
There are many ways in which people find Jesus. One of them is when trusted teachers, perhaps a pastor or other father in the faith, explains that Jesus is the “Lamb of God” for us.

Another way is to be introduced to Jesus by a friend or relative. They may not have all the answers, but they know Jesus is the Messiah. In their excitement they share the Good News about Jesus,

Some people find Jesus through a direct call from Him to “Come and follow me.”

Over and over we read in John’s gospel of people testifying to their experience of Jesus, and many people come to faith as a result.

When we think of evangelism it can seem to be a daunting task. What if I say the wrong thing? What if they don’t want to listen? What if they ask questions I can’t answer?

All we have to say is “Come and find Jesus the Messiah.”

Jesus’ message was also very simple. “The kingdom of God is here. Turn away from your sins and follow me.”

We don’t need classes to do this; we just need to do it!

Prayer
Lord, many people have come to faith through a simple invitation. Help me to be like Andrew and tell people, “I have found the Messiah.” Please show me the people you are already working on, and give me boldness to speak for you. Amen.

Eight Billion Reasons

From wikipedia

Gillette, the world’s biggest purveyor of men’s shaving accessories, decided that it needed to jump on the “progressive” (i.e. crazy leftist) bandwagon.

First it thought it would be cool to insult its customer base (i.e. mainly men) by accusing them of being accessories to bullying and domestic violence by letting it go on right under their noses and being afraid to confront their mates.

Not content with insulting their customers, they turned up the dial to complete revulsion with an ad featuring a transgender person learning to shave his/her face.

I’m not sure whether these ads were confined to the USA or whether they made their way to Australia. Where I live the TV ads are mainly local companies, agricultural products and junk food, so I don’t know what city people endure.

I do know that people all over decided to dump Gillette and buy products by other companies, such as this one.

So the big reason to revisit this is Gillette recently revealed their financial results for the last year.

A LOSS of $8 billion.

They put it down to people shaving less frequently,but that has been a fashion trend for several years now, which a normal commercial entity would work around.

$8 billion (US Dollars, that is)

That is $1 for every person on the planet.

Yet another confirmation of the saying: “Go woke, go broke.”