Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2020

The Light of the World - John 8:12 - 58

The Weekend, Oct. 31 – First of all, welcome to “All Saints Eve” – a celebration of Martin Luther nailing the ninety-five theses on the church door in Wittenberg.  Luther didn’t intend on leading a Reformation, but it did.  Part of Luther’s concern was that the church had abandoned the teaching of the word of God – “Sola Scriptura” – was the cry of the reformers to have the word of God be the sole authority of the church.  So, we carry on the tradition of God’s word as we read through the Gospel of John.  This weekend – John 8:12 – 58.  Please come back that we might look at this important passage together. Confrontations are never fun.  This entire section beginning in John 6 saw Jesus in Jerusalem at odds with the Pharisees.  He had talked to the crowd about being the bread of life , and to the people in the temple about being living water.   Both were metaphors that pointed to Jesus’ deity – his connection as the Son of God who sees “my father is working and so am I ” (5:19). 
 We come to the end of the workweek and continue our readings thru the New Testament in a year with John 7: 40 – 8:11. After you’ve finished reading the passage, please come back and we’ll connect the dots. The stories are seemingly disconnected, but if you noticed the beginning verse in chapter 8, you can see that they happen one after the other.   Jesus is at the Feast of Tabernacles and in the course of the ritual of carrying water, he spoke to the crowd about believing in Him as “ living water for those who believe ” (7:37-38).   The response of the people is divided.   Some call him a “prophet”, and others “the Christ”.   There may not be any distinction between the two titles, but since they see Jesus as nothing more than a Galilean, they didn’t know what to think about him.   Clearly, they missed Jesus’ point about believing in him.   The scene shifts in 7:45 – 52, to the chief priests and Pharisees, who had sent officers of the Temple to arrest Jesus.   When they ask why t

Streams of Living Water - John 7: 1 - 39

 Thursday, October 29 – As we near the end of the workweek, we will once again continue our reading in the Gospel of John.   Today’s reading is from John 7:1 – 39.   After you have finished your reading, please come back. The Feast of Tabernacles is also called Sukkot and is a festive event in the Jewish calendar.   It’s in the Autumn of the year, right after the holy day of Sacrifice called Yom Kippur.   During this week-long celebration, the Jews erect temporary shelters made of palm branches and “camp out” to remind themselves of God’s provision as they wandered in the wilderness for forty years.   It is a joyful event – think Thanksgiving for us.   The prelude to this chapter is in 7:1 – 13, which I will largely omit re-writing, with exception of this:   “So his brothers said to him, “Leave here and go to Judea, that your disciples also may see the works you are doing.  For no one works in secret if he seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the wor

The Bread of Life - John 6:22 - 71

Wednesday, October 28 – It’s mid-week and today, in our reading our New Testament in a Year, we continue in John’s Gospel at John 6:22 – 71.  It’s a passage that is intriguing, and I would encourage you to read it slowly, to comprehend the words, and then come back.  We’ll get a handle on all that Jesus said – I hope. The overall theme of this passage is simple.  Jesus said to them, and therefore to us, “…I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty (6:35).  The most basic thing in life has always been bread.  My son is gifted as a bread-maker, and I love bread in its many varied forms.  Every place I have ever traveled (five continents), I have marveled at the way locals make bread.  In Jesus’ day, bread was also a staple, but in a simpler setting, bread was essential.  The crowd had been miraculously given bread the day before, and Jesus slipped away from them.  When the morning broke, they got back into t

Bread and Water &Jesus' Miracles - John 6:1 - 21

  Tuesday, October 27 – We are continuing to read from the Gospel of John in our daily readings.   Today, the text to read is in John 6:1 – 21.   Please read the scripture first, and then return that he might walk through it together. I mentioned this before, but in John 5:1 we began a long section of John’s narrative in which Jesus offers five signs that demonstrate he is the Messiah, the Son of God.   In the latter part of chapter five, Jesus offered several different examples of why they should see him as the Son of God who is God-incarnate.   The signs served as marker points in proving that He could do impossible things.   Perhaps you noticed it in your reading today.   After the loaves and fish were distributed, and all had eaten, with leftovers besides, John says – “When the people saw the sign that he had done, they said, “This is indeed the Prophet who is to come into the world!” (6:14). The story of the feeding of the five thousand is a well-known story.   Jesus had cr

The Witnesses to Jesus' Divinity - John 5:19 - 47

  Monday, October 26 – Welcome to a new week.   We continue reading the New Testament in a year.   Today our reading continues in the Gospel of John, and we read from John 5:19-47.   Please read the passage and come back after that to walk through it together. John had given us a number of pictures of Jesus.   He is the word that was with God in the beginning.   He is the word that became flesh – incarnate – as the Son of God.   Jesus began to show who he was in signs.   He turned water into wine, healed an official’s son who was twenty miles away, and also a man who was lame at the Temple.   He had a conversation with a Pharisee named Nicodemus and a woman who was unnamed at a well.   While there had been questions from the Pharisees, there had been no open conflict – that is until now.   Over the next few readings Jesus is going to make it clear – he is the Son of God, and He and the Father, are one – this the Jews cannot comprehend, nor believe in.   The beginning of this hap

An Official and a Lame Man - John 4:43 - 5:18

 The Weekend, October 24 – We have come to the weekend in our reading thru the Gospel of John.   Our reading for these two days is from John 4:43 – 5:18. Please read the passage first and then come back to look at it again. After the encounter with the woman at the well, John continues to point us to Jesus’ interactions with people.   Today’s reading is about two people – a well-to-do official (probably from Herod’s court) and a no-named lame man.   The official is in Galilee, where Herod spent much of his time ruling over Israel. The no-named lame man is in Jerusalem, sitting near the Temple gates, begging – it was his only way to survive.   What each man had in common was their need – a need neither one of them was able to provide on their own.   “…he came again to Cana in Galilee, where he had made the water wine. And at Capernaum, there was an official whose son was ill.  When this man heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went to him and asked him to come down