Sunday, March 29, 2020
“Jesus is God: Know Him!
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalm 46:10 (NIV)
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
- So the purpose of the Sabbath was to give the Israelites time to reflect, not on their work but on God’s. They were then to find refreshment in knowing that their physical needs were supplied not by their toil, but by the God who had created the universe and had given them life. (John Maxwell, The Preacher’s Commentary, 103)
- The Jewish sabbath was only a picture; it anticipated a rest based on the finished work of Christ ( Jn. 17:4; 19:30) (John Phillips, Exploring the Gospels: Matthew, 228)
- The OT prohibited working on the Sabbath but it did not stipulate what kind of “work” was specifically indicated (Ex 20:8-11). Scripture implies that “work” consisted of one’s regular employment, but rabbinical option had developed oral tradition beyond the OT which stipulated 39 activities that were forbidden, including transporting an item from one area to another. Thus, the man had broken oral tradition, not OT law. (MacArthur Study Bible, 1553)
- Signs point to a reality beyond the sign. –Pastor Keith
The questions to be answered are…
Why did Jesus respond this way when accused of working on the Sabbath? What is he revealing about himself? What does it mean for us during this time of waiting?
Jesus didn’t need to defend himself or explain what the law of the Sabbath was intended for. Instead He declared Who He is! He is what we really need in life. It doesn’t come through the law or rules or any other false security. Life is only found in Jesus. We need to know Jesus for who He is!
The word of the day is… know
What do we need to know about Jesus?
- Jesus is God. They are one (v. 19-20). There isn’t a God of the OT or NT, God of wrath or God of Love. Instead, see that they are one.
In saying “my father” he was clearly claiming to be God’s Son, thus equal with God. For a human to claim equality with God was blasphemy; and blasphemy was a sin carrying the death penalty) (Lv 24:15-16). People regularly misunderstood Jesus, and he was constantly correcting them. Jesus never attempted to correct the understanding that he was claiming to be God, for that was exactly what he meant. Thus, the Jewish leaders sought to accuse Jesus and have him killed. (Bruce Barton, Life Application Bible commentary, 108)
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 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 a 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 on 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, 66)
You can’t be free until you are secure. And you can’t be secure unless you know the sovereign God who is ruling the whole show. – Steve Brown
I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future.
All our identity issues are fundamental misunderstandings of who God is. Guilt issues are a misunderstanding of God’s grace. Control issues are a misunderstanding of God’s sovereignty. Anger issues are a misunderstanding of God’s mercy. Pride issues are a misunderstanding of God’s greatness. Trust issues are a misunderstanding of God’s goodness. If you struggle with any of these issues, it is time to let God be the loudest voice.
Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you might not understand at the time. – Oswald Chambers
- Jesus is Lord (v. 22-30). One day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord. Everyone will bow down before Him and everyone will see Him for who he is. He will be the judge over all. Don’t wait until that day to see who He is…it will be too late.
(Jam 5:9, Act 10:42, 2 Cor 5:10 John 12; 10)
Jesus was not teaching justification by works (6:29). In context, the “good” is believing on the son so as to receive a new nature that produces good works (3:21, Jas 2:14-20) while the “evil” done is to reject the Son (unsaved) and the light, which has the result of evil deeds (3:18-19). In essence, works merely evidence one’s nature as saved (Rom 2:5-10). But works never determines salvation. (MacArthur Study Bible, 1555)
Think about your own righteousness and presenting it to God. What a joke! You have nothing to offer the God of the Universe. Even your most pure righteous deeds fall short of God’s glory (Rom 3:23, Is 64:6). The only thing that can please God is God. Therefore the only thing you can offer the God of the universe is Himself reflected in you by the work of the Holy Spirit in you. That is what brings glory to God. That is what pleases God. That is what brings merit to us before God. It is God and God alone. – Pastor Keith.
If you do not believe in a God of wrath, but only in a god of love; then what did it cost for your god of love to really love you? When you understand the wrath of God, you better understand the love of God because you understand what God was willing to do for you because of your sin. –Tim Keller
Recognizing God as judge should be sobering to us, but if we know that he is also on our side and has intervened for us, we can face judgment with confidence. (Chip Ingram, God as he longs for you to see him)
May God give you grace to see sin as it really is in his sight, for then you will realize your need of a savior. – Charles Spurgeon
You don’t have to work at pleasing God. He is already pleased by Christ. So be in Christ! – Steve Brown
All through the Gospel there is a “division of the house” wherever Jesus goes. His words and deeds either bring men to acceptance or rejection, to life or death. There is no neutral ground. (Roger Fredrikson, The Communicator’s Commentary, 117)
Jesus deserves all the glory and honor which comes through knowing who he is and having our lives reflect that view. One day we all will see who he really is—but don’t let that be the first time you bow down to Him.
During our time of “sabbath” dwell on who Jesus is and what he has done for you. Remember him as Lord and give him the honor he deserves.
Jesus will not be liked. You either bow down and worship Him as God or kill him as a lunatic and a heretic. But let us not come with any relationship with Jesus that is less than total commitment. Jesus says “crown me or kill me.” —Tim Keller
If you are hoping and trusting in the Lord and suddenly your health, wealth or future are taken from you and your hope is gone. Then, you need to confess that it was not the Lord, you were hoping in. It was what you have just lost. Hope in the Lord NEVER disappoints (Rom 5: 4-5).
Spiritual Challenge Questions…
Reflect on these questions in your time with the Lord this week.
- What attribute of God are you struggling to trust during this time?
- Are you taking time during this “sabbath” to Know Him?
- What promise is God wanting you to cling to during this time of uncertainty?
- Are you struggling with the idea of needing to let go of things in this world? Is there something you are holding on to that you need to surrender to the Lord?
- Is there something you are wanting to “save” you instead of Jesus?
- In the midst of everything going on in the world, how are you doing with worry, fear, or anxiety?
The Sabbath is not a day—it is a life-changing attitude. By reflecting on who he is and what he had done, our spirits will be so refreshed that when we return to our workaday world and all of its pressures, we can continue to rest in Him. That is the sabbath. ( John Maxwell, The Preacher’s Commentary, 105)
Quotes to note…
A proper view of God’s person is a powerful motive to true repentance. (Owen Roberts, Repentance, 159)
If you don’t see the absolute holiness of God, the magnitude of your debt, the categorical necessity of God’s just punishment of your sin, and therefore the utter hopelessness of your condition, then the knowledge of your condition, then the knowledge of your pardon and deliverance will not be amazing and electrifying! – Tim Keller
Fear is the result of distrust, of taking the eye off God, of being unduly occupied with difficulties and troubles. (Arthur W. Pink, An Exposition of Hebrews, 808)
Living the Christian faith is almost always acting in a manner contrary to the fear that you know. – Steve Brown
JESUS IS GOD: