FBCWest 573 | Division, Misinformation and Attacks
Recorded On: 09/24/2023
Hymn # 159 “Power in the Blood”
SCRIPTURE READING – Romans .5:8
Giving of Selves and Our Offerings
OFFERTORY MUSIC – Pru Hungate
Praise and Worship
“Raise a Hallelujah”
“God You Are”
“How Great Is Your Love”
Proclamation of the Word
Message by Pastor Joe
“Division, Misinformation and Attacks”
PRAYER TIME / Time of Reflection
“Only King Forever”
Benediction “There Is Freedom”
John 7:40 – 44 Various discussions and divisions of the people over Jesus to the point some want to seize Him
John 7:45 & 46 When asked why the officer did not seize Him, he said “never has a man spoken the way this man does”
John 7:47 – 49 The Pharisees attack him verbally
John 7:50 & 51 Nicodemus attempts to defend Jesus with the Law
John 7:52 They verbally attack Nicodemus, but do not have accurate facts
Transcript of Service
We've been going through the gospel of John for the purposes of finding and strengthening our faith. But just like during Jesus's time, in our time, having faith in Jesus is not for the faint of heart or the timid. We see those who misunderstood him and misunderstood his followers. They also attacked them, persecuted them and viewed them as leading others astray. Very much like we see today. So come with us and see how his followers reacted to such intimidation.
And that song that we just sang talks about there has never been, there will never be a God like you. Because his love is great. And yet there are those who seem to read the Old Testament and the New Testament and see two different gods. I encourage you if you think the Old Testament has a different God than the New Testament, you read the Old Testament again. Because in the Old Testament you'll find a God who hates evil and loves his people. You see a God who, even when his people are complaining and backbiting and are faithless, he is faithful and providing a way for their salvation and their redemption. So he is a God like no other God. He is a God who loves us. And so I have a bit of a problem. Let's see if I can fix it. I did. The monkey's getting better.
When we last
took a look at the Gospel of John, Jesus had gone up privately to
Jerusalem during the Feast of Booths, Shukot.
But then Jesus did what Jesus does. He taught in the temple.
And while teaching the temple there were those who
were in opposition to him and the Pharisees decided to have Jesus arrested.
Because Jesus did things like say,
"If you thirst, come to me and I will give you living waters."
This isn't the first time he said that he said that very same thing to the woman at the well. And now he broadcasted. And I think at an appropriate time, because as we shared during this
during the millennial kingdom, it is said that if we do not, the nations do not go to Jerusalem during this holy day, that God won't send that nation rain. And so Jesus is talking about giving them
living waters. And the writer John
explains in case we don't catch what he's doing, he's saying that Jesus is talking about the Holy Spirit because it hasn't yet come because Jesus had been glorified. And as a result of this teaching and Jesus crying out,
it says this, "So some of the people therefore, when they heard these words were saying, "This certainly is the prophet." Now when you see the prophet, they're talking about the prophet that was
testified of in Deuteronomy.
So they're saying this is obviously who Jesus is, but then we have in the conspirations
I'm having problems here.
And still others,
this is the Christ. Still others were saying, "Surely the Christ is not going to come from Galilee, is he?"
they kept having a debate about who Jesus is. Some people have an understanding of
maybe he's a prophet,
maybe he's the Christ,
maybe he's somebody else, and there are those who don't have a clue about anything. It says, "Well, wait a minute.
There isn't a prophet that comes from Galilee." Well,
the Messiah wasn't going to come quote-unquote from Galilee. That's not where his birth places. But as we've been told, Jesus's birthplace wasn't in Galilee.
But there's no statement that no prophet ever come from Galilee because there were a whole bunch of prophets who came from all over Israel.
So a division occurred in the crowd because of him. And so we see this division
because everybody has an opinion. Like everybody has a belly button. And so everybody's got to give their opinion and they say this is who he is, and this is who he is, and this is some of the problems. And so instead of having an agreeable disagreement, there's a division. And this sounds like our culture today. No one can have a disagreement, there becomes a division.
But those of us
who've come to faith
understand that faith is not for the timid or the faint of heart.
Because when we talk about having faith in Jesus, there always seems to be a division. And we will be subject to ridicule.
People will say, "Oh, well if you need a crutch, then you can believe in Jesus." Or they'll say, "Oh, well Jesus was a great teacher. Well, what did Jesus teach? That he's the Son of God. So if he's a great teacher, then follow his teaching because his teaching is he's the Son of God." And then there are still others who will say, "Well, you can believe whatever you want because we all
end up in the same place." And that disagreement and that ridicule will eventually turn into persecution.
And so if you're going to have faith in Jesus, then you need to be courageous.
Because there will be people
who will not disagree with you quietly.
They'll try to shout you down.
And so it goes on with that and it says, "So some of them wanted to seize him, but no one laid hands on him." And so there are those who are going to try to arrest him, those who wanted to stone him or whatever to persecute him because they didn't like his teachings because his teachings were about him. The reason no one could lay their hands on him, because God is sovereign always. And Jesus's time had not yet come. There would become a time when they would seize him at night.
There would come a time when they would arrest him and mock him and beat him, slap him, and crucify him.
Which was at the exact time that God had ordained.
But this is not the time. And so their plans and their their attempts to minimize Jesus's teaching and to seize him, arrest him is going to be over.
The officers then came to the chief priests and Pharisees and they said to them, "Why did you not bring him in?" So they come back with the
charge of arresting Jesus.
They come back without him. And so the Pharisees are going, "Wait a minute. We sent you to arrest him.
How come you didn't bring him back?" A phraseable question. The officers answered, "Never has a man spoken the way this man speaks."
If you listen to what Jesus said,
no man has ever spoke that way who was saying.
There's a lot of people who claim to be God.
But Jesus will prove it.
Because he is raised from the dead.
But Jesus teaches,
not like I teach. I teach based on what he said.
But because of who I am, I don't have perfect knowledge and perfect communication.
But Jesus is authoritative because he wrote the scriptures and he's been sent by the Father to testify about the Father and Him. And so he knows of what he's talking about. It's not academic.
It's not even practical. It's actual.
Because he knows of what he speaks.
And so certainly no man has ever. And so they are captivated by Jesus's teaching.
And there are a lot of people who are captivated by Jesus's teaching.
They never become followers of Him.
They think what he teaches is fine. They hope that there is a God and they hope that they're included in His plans.
But they don't want to pay the cost of what following Jesus and His teachings mean.
Because Jesus will say,
"If you want to follow Him, pick up your cross and follow Him." And in today's culture, which is not too much unlike other cultures, we are very narcissistic.
It's all about us.
It's even frustrating a lot of Christian songs.
And I like Christian music and I play it and whatever. But it seems that the high proportion of Christian songs, it's about what God has done for me. That He came through for me.
That when I was anxious, He gave me peace. And it's all about me, me, me. Rarely do we hear a Christian song that says, "This is what I want to do to God. Praise you, honor you, bless you."
But we're so narcissistic. Even in our worship, it's not worship of Him. It's worship of how wonderful we are. Jesus is so lucky to have me as His Father.
Never has there been a man who's spoken the way this means.
The Pharisees then answered them, "You have not also been led astray, have you? So they are now going to ridicule and hold them in contempt."
Wait a minute, we sent you to do a job and you got captivated by this guy's teaching. Have you been laid astray?
It wasn't, you're not following. It's obviously Jesus is wrong.
Have you been captivated by Him as He led you astray?
And again, in today's world, that's what we'll find. When you
find the courage to say that I'm a believer,
there will be people who will ridicule you and say, "Well, again, if you need a crutch, that's fine for you,
but I don't."
No one of the rulers of the Pharisees has believed in Him, has he? So they're saying,
"Have you been led astray?" But we haven't, no one of the rulers has.
When you hear that,
start to think about
who it is who's speaking.
Because I don't want to be in their group.
Just because they didn't believe, didn't mean that's not the right thing to do.
Oftentimes, the majority is wrong.
When they sent the spies to speak out the Promised Land, they sent 12.
Penn came back with a majority report and said, "We can't take it. They're too big. We're too little.
Woe is me."
The minority report said, "Yes, we can because God told us we could."
The entire nation decided to follow the majority report.
They are saying, "We're the majority. We're the learned people. We're the smart ones."
Again, like today.
Oh, if you have to have faith because you got to have the God in the gap. You don't understand something, so you put God there.
You don't understand something, so you put something else there.
I'll give you an example.
Science tells us that a comet can only last 10,000 years because of this snow and ice on it and that after 10,000 years, it would all be depleted.
But science also tells us that the
universe has been around for billions of years. Well, if it's been around for billions of years, you can't have comets
that are only there for 10,000. Unless you come up with faith and say, "There's an orc cloud." Well, have you seen it? No, but we believe it.
You're criticizing me because I believe in a God.
You're saying you're smart because you believe in a cloud that produces ice. I'll take my God every day. Yes, sir.
But this crowd which does not know the law is a curse.
So they're saying not only are we the smart ones, they're the stupid ones.
They're a curse because they don't know the law. Well, guess what guys? You're supposed to be the Pharisees. You're supposed to be the rulers and the teachers of the law. So why don't they know the law that you're saying that they should know?
So maybe you should quit your job because the people are cursed because they don't know the law.
So you see, they reveal their lack of knowledge and understanding and ignorant by their accusation. Nicodemus, who came to him before being one of them, said to them,
"Our law does not judge a man unless it first hears from him and knows what he is doing, does it?" So they're saying, "Well, we know the law." So Nicodemus, who is a Pharisee, says, "Okay, guys,
I'm going to give you the law." The law says we don't prejudge. We give a person an opportunity to be heard. We call it due process here in the United States.
We don't judge before we hear. So you haven't given Jesus an opportunity to explain himself, so we don't judge for that. So he is using the law against them.
So do you think they would repent or not?
They answered him, "You are not also from Galilee, are you?"
Notice what they're saying. The people from Galilee are bunch of people.
It would be like saying in the 1950s, "You're from Alabama," or "You're from the Appalachian Mountains." You're just stupid. You have a weird speech, and that's presented because when Peter starts preaching, they'll say, "Well, wait a minute, how did this guy get so knowledgeable? Because he's a Galilean. He's not supposed to know these things." So they, again, ridicule Nicodemus by saying, "You must be from Galilee. You must be one of those stupid hicks." Search and see that no prophet arrives without a Galilee.
And again, they are right back to the very same problem. Yes, the Messiah wasn't born in Galilee, but nothing says, "You can't move this." Actually, Jesus moved several times. He went from Bethlehem to Egypt to Nazareth to Capernaum. He was an itinerant preacher. He wasn't broke. He wasn't poor. He didn't get us because he was poor.
He gets us because he's not.
Again and again and again, they attempt to ridicule when they only show their own ignorance. So, how do we respond today when we state that Jesus is the Son of God? That I believe, and I don't believe blindly, I believe because his teaching and who he is is consistent with the Scripture, and he was raised from the dead consistent with the Scripture. There's going to be one who's going to raise from the dead who's going to get a head wound, and he will rise according to the Scriptures, but instead of being the Messiah, he's the anti-Messiah, or as we call it, the anti-Christ. We see what the Scriptures say, and we take a look, and we say he matches the Scripture. So, I don't believe blindly. I have reason for my belief.
So, when you're accused of being stupid, a hick, somebody who didn't get a proper education, who doesn't speak well,
simply saying, "How brave are you?"
Because when you find somebody who is that contemptible about who we are,
you're not likely to change their minds then. Not saying you won't be able to change your minds at all, but it's like somebody who comes from a different faith. I'll let you fill in the blank.
There are some who like to knock on our door. There's a couple of denominations I'm thinking of.
You can have a wonderful theological discussion about how they're wrong, but they're not there for you to convert them. They're there for you to convert you.
They're on a ministry trip. You can't change somebody who's on a mission.
You need to wait for them to be off the mission, and then they might be able to be listened to and to hear you. So, you say, "I'm going to pray for you," and you ask God to give you a more opportune time to present the gospel to them, and that we do so lovingly and passionately, just as whoever shared the gospel with us did so for us. And even if no one shared the gospel compassionately with us, God was compassionate because even though I was a sinner, he died for me. He showed me mercy. He showed me grace, even when I was an enemy of his. And so, when we are confronted by those four enemies of his and us because we follow him, we should in mercy, embrace, and love respond. My natural tendency, I'm one of those people who would like to just get along, but when I'm ready to fight, bring it on. No, it's like, but you can't beat the heavyweight champion of the world. That's okay. I'm going to try, or I'm going to die trying because I'm ready to go. You need to take a breath. You need to say, "Hey, God, how did you treat me when I didn't understand, when I was ignorant, when I was stupid? Help me to treat them, not the way they're treating me, but the way you treated me. Because you will never convince them you are right by doing so wrongly. You will only convince them of being right.
And you live a life consistent by what you teach, consistent by what he says. And I have discovered in my many years of following Jesus,
non-believer will do nothing to help you to believe and to follow your life.
And they are secretly wanting you to succeed because if you do, then that means it's real. That Jesus is real, that he is the son of God, and you committed your life to them. But if you fail, then they'll say, "I don't need to change my life because you said you believe it, you don't act like it. So I don't have to change. But if we live a life consistent with what we believe in peace, it puts the onus on them to understand."
So this one that we worship, this one that we say is the son of God,
they keep talking about being a prophet. And yes, he is a prophet. And yes, he is a prophet. He's also a king. He's the king of kings and lord of lords.
And he is a priest because he presently sits in the temple in heaven,
awaiting for the father to say, "Now it's time to come back." And he will leave the temple as its chief priest and bring us home. He's a prophet, he's king, he's a priest, and he is and was and always will be the son of God.
They only know him partially. "Well, is he a prophet? Is he a prophet?"
Hopefully, we understand more of all of who he is, prophet, priest, king, son of God.
And in a moment, we're going to sing only king forever. Because that's who he is. He's not a king for a day, or a queen for a day. He's not a priest for a day. He's not a prophet for a day.
He's not the son of God for it. He's all of those things forever, forever past, and forever future. And we can put our faith in him that he is faithful. And as I said, and I've been faithful to him several times, let us cry, to live our lives, consistent. That's who we say he is.