Year of the Bible – John 3:22 – 4:54

 

John 3:22

 

But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God. – John 3:21

A leader of the people came to him by night (as though he were afraid and ashamed) and wanted Jesus to explain Himself. Jesus made it very clear that a true disciple of Christ would courageously step forward into the light and make his faith known before all men. Without that courage, flowing out of a rebirth of the heart, there could be no enlightenment. A true disciple would be baptized publicly, and in accepting the praise of God, would also willingly accept the scorn or rejection of men. Jesus declared emphatically: “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.” (3:36)

The members of this new Messianic Kingdom are not necessarily the people one would expect. In John 4 a Samaritan woman met Jesus at a well. He delicately guided her into an understanding of who He was: First by revealing to her that He is aware of her sinful past; then by revealing to her that through faith in Him, she could obtain the gift of truly worshipping God—and thereby receive eternal life in His eternal Kingdom. Unlike the great leader of Israel, this sinful woman went and spoke of Jesus to everyone she knew, realizing that it would also expose her for her sinful life.

Where the healing of the soul exists, however, there is so much joy and happiness that the believer is not afraid of exposing personal sin. How does one get this great joy and forgiveness? Not just by exposing sin, but by believing God’s Word of pardon. The spoken work of Jesus forgiving sins is all that we need to have our sins forgiven before God.

To make that point, that believing Jesus is enough, even though we might not see His forgiveness or a miracle attached to it, Jesus tested an official who came to him to have his son healed. He wanted the official to trust in His Word, to believe by faith. He told him to go home because his son had already been healed. The man went trusting, believing, and his son lived. Not only did the man believe in Jesus as his savior from that very moment, so also did his entire family.

 
 Questions – John 3:22 – 4:54

  1. If a person is really seeking forgiveness of their sins from Jesus, will they remain a secret Christian?  
  2. What is God’s attitude towards the unbelieving world?
  3. What special kind of people does God accept as worshippers?
  4. What pain must always go along with forgiveness?    
  5. In what way did Jesus test the official to see if he had faith in His Word?
 

© John W. Fiene | Artwork by Brian McFarland