Illuminate light in a dark world is the topic that will be discussed today on RIOT Podcast, a Christian Discipleship Podcast.
It’s been 2 weeks since we were in the Book of John and that is where we are picking back up. Last week’s show, episode 86 was titled “Are LDS Mormons, Christians?” If you haven’t listened to it yet, that was a very informative show and we highly encourage you to go check it out.
The week before that in episode 85, titled “Answered Questions About Heaven”, we realized that there are a lot of unknowns about heaven so we decided to answer a few of those questions, again it’s another great show, so if you have not heard that one, please go back and listen.
This week, we will break down John Chapter 8 verses 12-30. In this, we pick up after the story of the woman caught in adultery. We start in verse 12 where there is a crowd around Jesus. We open our reading today with His famous “I am the light of the world” verse. He used this moment to let the crowd know that if they “walk in His light, they will not walk in darkness.”
Then in vs 16, he talks about “true and false judgment” and that the only true Judge is God in heaven, who sent Him. Then in verses 21-30, Jesus turns his conversation to “life and death”. He tells them in vs 21 that if they do not believe in Him they will die in their sins. The religious leaders kept asking Jesus, “Who are you and where do you come from?” Jesus has to keep repeating himself over and over again because they cannot hear him nor know Him.
Read John 8:12-20
In John, there are ”7 signs” and ”7 I am” statements. There are many seven patterns in the Bible. Seven was symbolic in ancient near eastern and Israelite culture and literature. It communicated a sense of “fullness” or “completeness”
To follow Jesus means to believe in Him, to trust Him and the results are life and life for the believer. The unsaved are walking in darkness because they love darkness. One of the major messages in this gospel is that the spiritual light is now shining, but people cannot comprehend it, and they try to put it out.
One of the keywords in this section of reading is “witness”. It is used 7 times in this context. Jesus made it clear that their witness was not dependable because their judgment was faulty. They judged on the basis of externals, mere human judgment, but Jesus judged on the basis of spiritual knowledge.
If you noticed, Jesus never really answered the Pharisee's question of “where is your father?” The word “father” is used 21 times in this passage of reading.
Jesus did not avoid the issue but faced it honestly. He knew that their father was not God, but the Devil. These men were religious and yet they were the Children of the Devil. In our next show, we will cover more of how the Pharisees are of the Devil. But before we get there let’s Read John 8:21-30 and continue this conversation Jesus is having with the Pharisees.
Read John 8:21-30
In John 7:34 where Jesus told his disciples that he is leaving them? So again, He shares it with the people. But again the Jews misunderstand what He was saying. Jesus then warned them that He would be leaving them and they would not be able to follow Him.
In reality, the opposite was true. It was the Jews who were going to the place of judgment! Jesus was returning to His Father in heaven, and nobody can go there who has not first trusted in the Savior. The reason Jesus and the Jewish leaders were going to different destinations was that they had different origins. Jesus came from heaven, but they belonged to the earth.
It’s incredible that the religious leaders asked Jesus who he is in vs 25. He had just given the evidence that He is the Son of God, and yet they had deliberately rejected the evidence. Jesus’s reply was “I am exactly what I said”. In other words, “Why should I teach you new things, or give you a new proof, when you have not honestly considered the witness I have already given?”
In vs 26, Jesus again claims to be a deity when he said “I declare to the world what I have heard from the Father.” Jesus had told them over and over again, I and the Father are one, what I say, is what my Father says. How did the Jews respond to this claim in vs 27? They said, “We do not understand what He is speaking about.”
In Vs 28, Jesus said to them, “When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you will know that I am he.” Jesus is predicting His death on the cross here. The word “lifted up” actually has a dual meaning. It could read “lifted up in crucifixion” and lifted up in “exaltation and glorification”. Jesus often combined the two, for He saw His crucifixion in the terms of glory and not just suffering.
In vs 29 and 30, Jesus makes two more stupendous claims. Not only was He sent by the Father, but the Father was with Him because He always did what pleased the Father. No doubt, His enemies reacted violently to these words, but some of the listeners put their faith in Him.
Salvation is a matter of life or death. People who live in their sins and reject the Savior must die in their sins. There is no alternative. We either receive salvation by grace or experience condemnation under God's law. We either choose to walk in the light and have eternal life, or we choose to stay blinded, walk in the darkness, and experience eternal death. That is the message God gave to the religious leaders.
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