John

THE BOOK OF SIGNS

John is the most creative writer, and presents the gospel not in chronological order but by showing us the signs that point to Jesus as the fulfilment of the Messianic promises.  John is funny, creative and gives us insight into the lives of the disciples more than any other book.  Notice the “beloved disciple” appearance as you read this creative and amazing gospel by one who was there when it all happened.

PART ONE | PART TWO

 
 

 

Part One

IN HIM WAS LIFE, AND THAT LIFE was the light of all mankind.

J 1:4


DIVE

no one ever made a difference by being like everyone else

God has created you unique – I love the quote from the movie The Greatest Showman with Hugh Jackman “No-one ever made a difference by being like everyone else.” Today you are called to be you, uniquely you. Why am I saying this as I introduce the book of John, because that was John, uniquely him! He was the Son of Thunder that wanted to call down fire on those who didn’t believe, and in following Jesus he became the apostle of love, the prophetic, quirky, solid, loving, serious, apostle of God. Today don’t be afraid of who you are, walk with Jesus and let Him change you and mould you but “be you”. Christianity isn’t about all becoming the same, it is about following Christ and giving glory to God as you are! Be proud of you and let Him use you.

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DEEP DIVE

the deity of christ and the trinity

RC Sproul says that there is no other passage in the New testament that so emphatically captured the hearts and minds of the Christian intellectual community for the first 3 centuries. We can easily see why that is the case. Sproul also states that this passage, more than any other, is foundational for the church’s affirmation and confession of the doctrine of the Trinity.

The main purpose of John’s writing is to make a case for the Identity of Jesus, and in doing so, inspire saving faith in the one and only son of God resulting in eternal life (John 20:31). In the opening lines we see him making a very bold statement, which is in keeping with his goal in presenting Jesus as the one and only Son of God sent from heaven, who is above all creation and is in fact the creative hand behind the whole show.

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Part Two

WHOEVER BELIEVES IN ME, RIVERS OF LIVING WATER WILL FLOW FROM WITHIN THEM

J 7:38


DIVE

THE BOOK OF SIGNS

The book of John is an incredible composition with a purpose. It is completely different to the other gospels, the miracles and things that Jesus did are not in chronological order but John has placed them in the order of his purpose. Don’t panic this is not manipulation of the text but a common way of writing in the 1st Century.

So let me explain to you why John was writing such a different account from the other gospels. When you read the gospels you can see that each had their own purpose for writing them. Matthew writes a book of Jesus’ teaching to show everyone what Jesus said and did in fulfilment of the Old Testament as the Messiah. Luke – Acts was written as a close chronological account of everything that Jesus did and then what the disciples did. Mark, the first gospel written, is a book of activity, you are going to hear terms like immediately, he is showing Jesus was a man of action, a powerful minister and a suffering servant.

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DEEP DIVE PT.1

| Kate FORSYTH

Often when you present the gospel to a person, it is met with the response that Jesus was not God but only the Son of God, as if He is somehow lesser than the Father. The gospel of John presents the truth about Jesus and His deity through carefully chosen miracles and discourses, as opposed to the chronological accounts of the other three gospels.

It’s opening ‘In the beginning’ alluding to Genesis 1:1, presents Jesus as the Creator and ‘all things were made through Him’(vs 3). In the first three verses, Jesus, the Word of God is revealed to be eternal, with God and to be God. If He is both God and with God, then God must be composed of more than one being. God is a Trinity, with three members of the Godhead- Father, the Word (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit; all equal but have differing functions.

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DEEP DIVE PT.2

Throughout the book of John, we see this contrast between belief and unbelief, between a saving faith and a faith that abandons Jesus when his teaching or his demands become too costly or inconvenient. Here I want to uncover the nature of saving faith that will serve as a litmus test for introspection and dispel some common myths around the nature of faith. The objective here is introspection and growth in Christ personally rather than becoming the judge and jury as to whether someone has a genuine faith.

One of the common myths around the nature of faith is that it is ‘belief in the absence of evidence’. Acclaimed atheist Richard Dawkins asserts that “Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of, even perhaps because of, the lack of evidence.”. I find that this is due to our very simplistic understanding and definitions here. Due to this contemporary understanding of the words faith and belief, we have attributed meanings that are contrary to the biblical sense.

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