Now that we are focused on Jesus, we can actually start to make some progress.
So far we have only been destroying faulty foundations.
So let’s see if we can build on the correct one.
Let’s start with this statement:
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now am here. I have not come on my own; but he sent me.
43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say.
44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
45 Yet BECAUSE I TELL YOU THE TRUTH, YOU DO NOT BELIEVE ME!
It’s interesting that Jesus says that the reason why they don’t believe what he says is because he is telling them the “truth”
Evidently, if he came and told them lies (like Paul)……they would have believed him
But why is it that this truth is so hard to hear?
What is this truth that Jesus came to tell that is so opposing to what people want to hear?
That will be determined as we go along.
26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters– yes, even his own life– he cannot be my disciple.
27 And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.
As you can see……this is a pretty hard truth to accept straight from the onset.
Jesus says……if you don’t hate your life…..you cannot be his disciple.
It is a very serious task to ask oneself the question…..”Do I hate my life?”.
A famous person once said…..”Nobody wants to die, but everybody wants to go to heaven”.
That statement hits the nail right on the head, and its something that needs to be confronted.
22 BLESSED ARE YOU WHEN MEN HATE YOU, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.
23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.
Jesus said again in Mark 13:13…..”ALL MEN WILL HATE YOU BECAUSE OF ME, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved”.
How many of us want to be hated?
Trust me……if you go around preaching the actual words of Jesus……it is inevitable….. you will be hated.
There is something beautiful about the truth though:
31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.
32 Then YOU SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE.”
Knowing the truth is what makes a person free.
But then the question follows…….what is the truth?
6 Jesus answered, “I AM THE WAY AND THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE. No one comes to the Father except through me.
7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
The truth……is an actual person…..Jesus Christ.
For the benefit of the discussion.
Let us assume that Jesus really is the truth, like he says he is.
And let’s see where we end up.
One thing is for sure……Jesus is either a mad man……or he is “who he says he is”.
It’s one or the other.
Hopefully……over the next few weeks……we will find the truth.
Who knows……we may have found “him” already.
To be continued…….