Services | Jesus Really Means It

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FBCWest 594 | Jesus Really Means It

Jesus Really Means It | Poster

Recorded On: 02/18/2024


Hymn # 495 “There Is a Land Fairer than Day”
SCRIPTURE READING – Revelation 21:1 - 4
Giving of Selves and Our Offerings

Praise and Worship
“Home Coming” ​​
“Great Are You Lord”
“Only King Forever”

Proclamation of the Word
Message by Pastor Joe
“Jesus Really Means It”

PRAYER TIME / Time of Reflection
Chorus “I Love You Lord”

Benediction “Praise You Anywhere”

Sermon Notes
John 15:12 Jesus repeats His commandment to love fellow disciples as He has
John 15:13 Greater love is to lay one’s life down for his friends
John 15:14 We are Jesus’ friends if we do as He commands
John 15:15 His disciples are no longer slaves, but friends because He is disclosing what the Father has said
John 15:16 They dis not choose Jesus, He chose them and appointed them to bear fruit so that what you ask the Father will do in Jesus’ name
John 15:17 Jesus again repeats His commandment


Transcript of Service

If you knew you were going to die within a few hours, or that you were to take a trip that you were going to be gone for a long time, and your loved ones and the people you cared about were gathered around you, what would you talk about? I suspect it would not be the weather or some other inconsequential things that you would talk about things that would be very important to you, and if you repeated those things it might be because they're very important to you. At this point we're going to take a look at the Scriptures where Jesus is going to be arrested in a few hours, and He's going to be teaching His disciples some additional information, but He keeps repeating Himself on one particular topic. Come and listen to see what that one particular topic is and how it should apply to our ministry as well.

If you have your Bibles, and you should, turn to the Gospel of John chapter 15, and we're going to start with verse 22. Now the context of this is that after Jesus and His disciples, the 11 that remained because Judas left, had just concluded their Passover celebration, and Jesus told them that they were to get up and go from there, and He's been teaching them as they've been journeying on to the Garden of Gethsemane. So in a few hours He's going to be arrested, and then He's going to be tried, convicted, and crucified. So He has only a few hours left to continue to teach the disciples.

Jesus is the Son of God. Jesus is the Messiah, but He was also their rabbi, their teacher, and they were His students, and so He was teaching them in these last few hours. Now each student has their own way of learning information. When I was in high school, college, in law school, I would see different people do different things, and so some students would write down everything that the teacher said. That wasn't my style. My style was to listen, to hear what the teacher had to say, and then if the teacher wrote something down on the chalkboard or whiteboard, I would generally write that down, because I figured it would be on the test if he or she spent the time to write it on the board. If they said it several times after writing it on the board, I said, "Ah, this is definitely going to be on the test, so I need to know this information." And so that's how I would do things, and it kind of worked out for me. I actually got to graduate even law school. Other people did it other ways, and so

Jesus is teaching them, and He's going to be teaching them a number of things, but He's going to repeat something once already when they were at the Passover, and He's going to say it the same thing two more times in this short period, because Jesus knows that He has a short period of time, and He's going to say things that are important. So as a student, knowing because of the gospel that Jesus is having just a few more hours with His disciples, what He's saying is important. Now the sad thing is that what He is teaching is not complicated.

It's not calculus for those of us who aren't that great at math. It's not statistics or these things. It's something that the concept is easy to grasp.

It's kind of like when I was in algebra. They spent like three weeks talking about the number line.

My attitude was, if you don't get the number line in the first 15 minutes, drop the class, because it's not that hard. Now the quadratic formula was a little more complicated for those who are really good in math. It wasn't that complicated after you do a few problems, you figure it out. But I always thought it was interesting that when it came to the final, I never saw a question on the number line. I saw a question on the quadratic formula several times. And so the concept here that Jesus is teaching is not difficult to understand, but apparently it's difficult to do, because we don't do it that well. And so

sometimes when we teach, you think you teach and it has no effect. So

when my first grandchild was born, I had the opportunity for some time to watch him alone. And so it would be he and I, and sometimes it would be his grandmother and me, but we had the opportunity just to have him and watch him. And so I would, instead of doing baby talk and whatever, I would talk things like constitutional law. And I would say things like, there must be a compelling state interest. Now he was like two months old or something. But that's what I talked to him. But that's what I talked to him. My grandson is brilliant because I talked to him about constitutional law. Now his mom and dad probably would have objected that and probably think, no, he's brilliant because of what they'd done. They added to it. But now the other grandchild of theirs, yeah, he's brilliant. And I'll give them the credit. What they did and influenced his life. He's now really brilliant and whatever. But my oldest one is brilliant because of what I did. But anyway, there's a teaching and sometimes you think the teaching doesn't have any impact. And it's sometimes when Jesus teaches us, it seems like we just go, uh-huh, we're like the baby who, I don't know what you're talking about, but at least you're paying attention to me. Okay. And so Jesus has just told his disciples what he's going to now tell them here. And so in the Gospel of John chapter 15 verse 12 it says this, "This is my commandment, that you love one another just as I have loved you." Now again, he just told them that during the Passover celebration that this was a new commandment that he was giving to them.

And so since Jesus is towards the end of his earthly ministry, he's saying something that's really, really important. Now you and I, if we knew that we were going to not live a lot longer, or we were going to be gone on a very long trip, that we would say things that would be important to us. You know, we wouldn't talk about the weather tomorrow because it's going to change. But we would talk about things that are important, things that you want your family or the loved ones around you to know. And so Jesus has repeated this a second time in a very short period of time. You see, they just got up from the Passover meal where he was teaching them. He told them to leave and between the time that they go from the Passover meal to the Garden of Gethsemane, he's telling them, "Again, this is my commandment. This is what I am ordering you to do. Just like my father gave you 10 commandments and a bunch of other laws, this is my commandment. Not that we love, but that we love one another as he has loved us." So apparently, Jesus knows that while this is not a difficult concept to understand, it seems to be a very difficult concept to do. So he's told us, "My commandment, not a suggestion, love one another, not just as you love yourself, but as Jesus has loved you." Then he says, "Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends." Now, I want to emphasize that Jesus says that no one has greater love than this, that when you lay down your life for your friends, no one took Jesus' earthly life. The Jews didn't take his life. The Romans didn't take his life. No one took his life. He laid it down. That was the purpose of his coming to redeem us. And it was his father's plan from before the time that he said, "Let there be light."

So the only people who are responsible for Jesus laying down his life is you and me who have believed in him because he died for us. He says, "So the thing is, he's laying down his life. No one is taking it, and he's laying it down for his friends. Not for everyone, for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you."

Now, I always love to talk about how much Jesus loves us, and we even have an old hymn that says, "What a friend we have in Jesus." But nowhere in the verse it says, "Yes, Lord, you're my friend because I'm doing what you say." It's, "We just want him to love us and to die for us and to give us all kinds of goodies and to be boyfriend Jesus." When he's saying, "You're my friends if you do what I command you." There's a requirement here.

Now, notice he says, "You're my friends if you do what I say." He didn't say, as I just referenced boyfriend Jesus, that he's my friend. He's my Lord. He's my Savior. He's God. And while we may know each other intimately, there was a movie about a president, and his good friend was the chief advisor.

And his good friend kept calling the president, "Mr. President." And the president said, "You can, you can," whatever the guy's name, "You can call me whatever the first name was." He goes, "No, I won't because you're the president." Jesus is Messiah, the Son of the living God, God.

I will speak to him respectfully because of who he is, not just because of what he does. Yes, he can call me and you friend when we do what he says and command it. "No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing, but I have called you friends for all things that I have heard from my father I have made known to you." He's going, he says, "When a master of the house tells the slave to do something, he doesn't tell the slave why he should do it, he just tells them do it."

You know, we don't like the concept because of in America, we had such a bad issue with slavery.

The dirty little secret is slavery has been worldwide problem from almost the beginning of time, even to today. There are people who are considered slaves. But in the slave, no one asked the slave, "Well, is this a good idea? You just do what your master tells you to do." Jesus says, "I am going to tell you why I'm doing these things. I'm calling you friends. We're having this relationship and I'm going to make known to you why it is that you're to do what I'm telling you to do and why I'm doing what I'm doing so that you'll understand, not just follow orders." So he says, "Whatever I've heard from the father, I have made known to you.

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you would go and bear much fruit and that your fruit would remain so that whatever you ask of the father in my name, he may give it to you." I'm going to jump, Bons, other than the comment, "Notice, the choice was his, not theirs." Think about that. They're not going to get into the doctrines. But he goes, "Not only did I choose you, I have appointed you. This is what you're going to do. You're going to bear fruit." Well, remember, he just talked about the vine and the vine gressor and bearing fruit and being pruned. And if you're not bearing fruit, the limbs get cut off and burnt. So he's following up and says, "That discussion that I had with you, that teaching applies even now. It isn't for you to say, "Oh, okay, that's a nice teaching." No, no. I have appointed you to bear fruit and that it would remain."

There are times, as I confess, there are the fruits of the Spirit and one of the fruits is patience.

I wish it would remain because I'm sure tomorrow, when I'm driving in the rain, some idiot will cut me off and while I'm singing praises to God, I'll probably curse him out.

It's just that patience would just remain. Okay. And so he's telling, "Okay, guys,

you're supposed to bear fruit and that fruit is supposed to be there. It's not to be there one day and in the next half hour not be there. It's to remain so that whatever you ask of the Father of my name, He may give to you." Now people, again, this is several times Jesus has said, "If you ask something in my name, the Father will give and all these things." And people will claim and say, "Well, whatever you ask, Jesus will give." Nobody ever says, "Yeah." If you're asking it in His name, and you're probably not because you're asking it what you want, and you're not asking in His will because it's your will, and you're not saying, "And Lord, I'm bearing fruit and Lord, I'm doing your commandments and Lord or whatever." And so because I have fit all the elements that you've told me to do, I'm going to ask this in your name

if it's your will and rely on the Holy Spirit to correct my mis... Notice Jesus have said, "If this cup can pass from me, but not my will yours." You see Jesus made requests,

but the requests we're still in keeping with God's determination of what He's to do. So He says, "If you're doing these things, you can ask in my name and He may give it to you. This I command you that you love one another."

This is now the third time Jesus has commanded His disciples to love one another. Not to love the world, not to love classic art, but to love each other. Maybe, just maybe it's on the test.

If Jesus had a whiteboard or a blackboard, maybe He'd have written it down,

but He didn't have it because they're moving from where they were to where they're going. So He's teaching. They need to listen. And again, the concept is not difficult.

It's not figuring out how you get an object from the earth to the moon and back. It's simply that we're to love one another, fellow disciples the way He has. What was one of the ways He did? He laid down His life for His friends. But you see, we want to make sure that it's about us. And even if we lay down our life for the friends, we want credit for it.

Well, I taught that Sunday School class for 40 years and I never got a pin that said I was appreciated. Well, did you teach for 40 years because you wanted a pin or because you're trying to honor Him and love Him? That's where we're to do this. So the concept is not difficult.

But love, apparently in this culture, is totally misunderstood.

So I'm going to jump to 1 Corinthians chapter 13. And unfortunately, one of the most times you hear this passage read, "Is at a wedding," which I find ironic because this doesn't have anything to do with husband and wife. It has to do with how I as a disciple and to love you as a disciple.

So, "If I speak with tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so as to remove mountains, but do not love, I am nothing."

Notice Paul is following up with what Jesus taught and said, "Yeah, it's on the test." And this is how important it is. You might have all kinds of faith and you can tell this mountain, you can tell Mount Shasta be removed and Mount Shasta is removed, but you don't love.

Paul is telling us through Jesus, big deal.

If you have the ability to prophesize and to preach and do all these things and do it awesome, but you do not have love, it's nothing.

"If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing." So there will come a day when we are facing the Bema seat and if you say, "Well, you know, Lord, I was super mega rich and I gave all of it to feed the poor and I died as a martyr being burned, but I didn't love." Jesus says, "There's no reward."

That was wood, hay, and stubble. It wasn't gold, it wasn't precious stones.

Then he starts to tell us what love is. Love is patient. I already told you this is one of the difficult ones. The best way I handle this is to be alone, because then I don't need to be patient because I'm alone. But love is patient. Love is kind. Notice it doesn't say love is to act kind. Love is kind and is not jealous. It doesn't matter if you get recognized for doing something and I don't. I should be celebrating your recognition rather than jealous that no one noticed mine. Love does not brag. It is not arrogant. It does not act unbecomingly. It does not seek its own. It is not provoked. You see, when you love somebody, they say something hurtful. You don't seek to strike back out. You say, "I love that person."

Does not take into account a wrong suffered. Now I love to tell this jokingly story because it's, the reason why it's jokingly is because it's so true. We husbands do a lot of stupid things. Amen. Amen. And then we'll ask for forgiveness and then we'll get it. And we think it's over with because God says when He forgives, He forgets. Then 13 years later, remember on January 12th, 2014, you said this. Did I? But I thought you for people love to say they forgive, but they never forget. This love is you don't hold into account a wrong suffered. It's like God. We sin against Him. He forgives us and our sins are as far as the East is from the West and He doesn't remember them anymore. Love does not rejoice in unrighteousness. That's a problem in our culture because we're supposed to celebrate unrighteousness. We're supposed to tolerate unrighteousness. We're supposed to be accepting of unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth. Bears all things,

believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails. But if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away with. If there are tongues, they will cease. If there is knowledge, it will be done away for. But for we know in part and we prophesy in part. This is obvious. Paul didn't give us all the teachings. James and Peter and John and Matthew and Luke and Mark all needed to give us the revelation of God because each had a portion, not at all. But when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child. And when I became a man, I did away with childish things. We have a whole lot of Christian babies.

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face, no in part, but then I will know fully just as I have also been fully known. But now faith, hope, love abide these three.

But the greatest of these is love. You see, because there will come a time we won't need faith because we will see Him. He will return. We don't have to believe that will happen. It will happen. We've been singing about heaven. We won't have to believe that there is a heavenly place that we will dwell with Him forever. We will be there and see it. We'll no longer have to have hope for those things because we will have realized them. But because God is love, love will remain in heaven. So if you're not a loving person, you will not feel at home in heaven. If you're a bitter, mean person, then you will stand out like a sore thumb in heaven because that's not where that kind of activity is. It is love.

Love is action.

Now I'm going to give you an analogy, and I'm not saying it's the best analogy. So I'm not going to die on the hill. And if you come up with a better one, awesome.

In our culture today, it's kind of like if a person got caught in quicksand. The way our culture would describe that, we would go there and be beside them and say, "You know, you have beautiful hair. Where do you go to get your hair styled? Do you need a glass of water? Because, you know, it looks like it's sandy and whatever. I bet you're parched. It's like some water." As a person continues to sink and sink and sink until they're no longer there. But you see, I tolerated them being in quicksand. I was accepting of them being in quicksand. I even was there. I offered them water. Had a conversation.

But love is, you're in quicksand. I'm going to find a rope or a pole or a branch and pull you out.

A person in quicksand today is someone who needs Jesus to save them. But we're so concerned about tolerating unrighteousness. We take no action. Well, you know, you may need Jesus and that may be good for you. And so we stand silently in conversations and proclaiming how we love

because we tolerate unrighteousness rather than offering them a rescue.

And offering them a rescue is love. It is seeing their need and doing something to rectify it.

If I'm dying of thirst, I don't need a conversation with you. I need water. If I'm hungry and about to die, I need food. And if I am spiritually blind and deaf and dead,

I need a savior.

We are told to love our neighbor as ourselves. So we need to be loving and doing assistance just as the Samaritan saw the person in need and helped them.

Jesus is not teaching about the lost. He's teaching about those of us who are his students already. And as he said, they will know the world. Will know that you are my disciples. You are my students.

That you love one another as I have loved you.

If Jesus said it three times in a few hours, then he really, really, really, really, really, really, really means it. And therefore, maybe we should really, really, really, really, really do it. See, I don't need a new word. I don't need Jesus to tell me anything else. I need to do what he's commanded me. And once I got that down,

then I'll try to work on faith that moves mountains and maybe I'll work on other things. Because he's given me a whole lot to do to be like him.

But he's telling me to love one another as he is loved and to be willing to lay down my life for my friends. And that's how people will know the world. That who he is, is. And I follow him.

And so, maybe it would have been better if he'd given us a calculus equation to figure out.

Because then maybe we would sit down and study and figure out the calculation.

He's not given us anything difficult to figure out. He simply told us something simply to do. And therefore, our reflection song isn't how much I love you. Because that I'm going to try to do because I'm his. But I'm going to do it to love you. Because following his command says, I love him. I love you, Lord. And I lift my voice to worship you.

And may this worship be a sweet, sweet sound in your ear. Because I'm doing what you told me to do. And therefore, I can say, I love you. Now God's people say.

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