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The call to believe in, trust, follow Christ--- thoughts from John 6-10
The call to believe in, trust, and follow Christ
Thoughts from John 6-10

In John 6:40 Jesus says; "For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day."

At least 54 times over 48 verses in the Gospel of John the word "believe" is used in the Gospel of John. In the whole of the NIV Bible 149 verses use the word "believe", so it's kind of huge that 1/3 are used in the John. In addition to this the word "believes" is used 13 times in John.

I. Believing and trusting in Christ is what the whole of John is about.

John comprises an extended call to put our faith in Christ as Savior and Lord- that we might come to have the forgiveness of sins and eternal life (which consists of being in relationship with Jesus - who is the way, the truth, and the life).

Some verses from John which demonstrate this point

"Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life." John 3:14-15

"Then they asked him, "What must we do to do the works God requires?" Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent." John 6:28-29

"But he continued, "You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am the one I claim to be, a you will indeed die in your sins." John 8:23-24

"Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don't you believe me?" John 8:46

Jesus said to her, (Martha) "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" "Yes, Lord," she told him, "I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world." John 11:25-26

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me." John 14:1

"Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves." John 14:11

"Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe." John 20:27

"Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may d believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name." John 20:30-31

II. SURROUNDING THE CALL TO BELIEVE IN HIM, JESUS MADE SOME PRETTY BIG CLAIMS

Some of the claims of Christ in the Gospel of John

a. The Temple was His Father's house. John 2:16
b. He would die and rise to life after 3 days John 2:19. In John 10:18 Jesus says; "No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father."
c. He is the Light of the world John 3:19
d. He came down from Heaven John 3:17, 31, etc, etc (over and over again Jesus makes this claim-- a claim that some contested but he never backs down on)
e. He is the Christ, the Promised Savior and Messiah. Note the conversation between Jesus and the Samaritan woman. She said "I know that the Messiah (called Christ) is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us." Then Jesus declared, "I who speak to you am he." John 4:25-26
f. He gives living water (eternal life) and to all who believe the Holy Spirit would come and indwell them John 4:13-14; 7:37-39; 15:26
g. God was his Father. John 5:16-18. In the Jews mind this was akin to claiming equality with God-- so they tried to kill him.
h. All judgment entrusted to the Son John 5:22
i. He to be honored as the Father is honored John 5:23
j. He going back to the Father
k. He and the Father are one John 10:30
l. He the Bread of Life and in him is found salvation, forgiveness, and eternal life. John 6:35
m. To be God. "Before Abraham was, I am" John 8:58
n. He the Good Shepherd John 10:11
o. He the Resurrection and the Life. John 11:25-26
p. He the Way, the Truth, and the Life and that no one gets to the Father except through Him. John 14:6
q. He a King. John 18:37
r. He is coming back John 21:22

BTW-- He backed up his claims by some really big miracles. i.e Healing the man born blind, raising Lazarus from the dead, turning water into wine, healing a man's son just by saying it was done, Healing a man who had been an paralyzed for 38 years, feeding 5000 men plus women and children, walking on the water, rising from the dead



III. JESUS' CALL TO BELIEVE IN HIM AS MESSIAH, SAVIOR, LORD, AND ONLY WAY TO THE FATHER STIRRED A LOT OF CONTROVERSY

As I read through John 6-10 this past week I noticed that every chapter had this one thing in common: Jesus stirred people up. Jesus' miracles and particularly his teachings caused a lot of controversy.

For example

a. In John 6, following the incredible miracle of feeding 5000 men plus women and children, Jesus tells the crowd that he is the Bread of life and that if "anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world" v.51.

Immediately they misunderstood Jesus, thinking he was talking about cannibalism-- the result being that more than 99% of them walked away. This was the same group who the day before wanted to make him king.

While the majority walked away Peter made this confession "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God." v.67-69

b. In John 7:19 while Jesus is in Jerusalem at a special Feast called the Feast of Tabernacles, a number of people- in response to Jesus' claims and teaching insult Jesus by calling him demon possessed. A few minutes later, after hearing some more from Jesus, people were trying to seize and kill Jesus--- yet in the midst of this are these words "Still, many in the crowd put their faith in him saying "When the Christ comes, will he do more miraculous signs than this man?" v.31

c. In John 8 Jesus bluntly calls the folks he is talking too the children of the devil, challenging them as to why don't they believe in him-- for he is sinless and speaks nothing but the truth to them v.44-45. A short while later in John 8 Jesus makes the blunt claim of being God, saying "Before Abraham was I AM" . The instantaneous response was they picked up stones to stone him to death v.58

d. The pattern of conflict and controversy carries on through John 9-10 as well.

Yet note this: ALONG THE WAY, despite heavy opposition there were people who saw what Jesus did and heard what he said and who believed.****

What did they believe? They believed He was the Messiah and promised Savior and fulfillment of the prophets of the Old Testament. They believed he was God in the flesh. They believed that he and the Father were one. They believed He come down from Heaven. They believed that he was the one who could forgive their sins and that in him there was eternal life.

IV. WHERE ARE YOU AT? HAVE YOU PUT YOUR FAITH IN CHRIST AS SAVIOR, LORD, AND ONLY WAY TO THE FATHER?

As we learned from Christ last week "No one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again." John 3:3

Being "Born again" is a work of the Holy Spirit who convicts a person of sin, righteousness, holiness, and that Jesus is the Messiah and Savior.

The call of the Spirit and the Word is to put your faith and trust in Jesus as Lord, as Savior, as the only Way to the Father. Put your faith in Him and obey His Word- for obedience and holiness is the fruit of a heart truly set upon Christ.

V. FOR US WHO ARE THE FOLLOWER OF CHRIST WE HAVE A MISSION: TO CALL PEOPLE TO BELIEVE, TRUST, TURN TO CHRIST FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF THEIR SINS AND ETERNAL LIFE

Paul wrote "We implore you, be reconciled to God" 2 Corinthians 5:20

Fact: Some will reply to our presentation of Christ in a hostile fashion (If they did it with Jesus, it will happen to us)

Fact: Some will believe!

Our job: Be faithful!