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THE WITNESS OF SCRIPTURES

(51)

Sermon shared by Dennis Davidson

June 2008
Summary: Openness to God precedes the reception of Scripture truth. We are not to guide Scriptures, they are to guide us...to God. We are not to make Scriptures say what we think or want them to say, but let them say what God desires to reveal.
Series: John
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
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love the religious life, but they have forgotten how to love God.

The Jews did not want a Messiah with Godís credentials but one with their credentials. Verse 43 asserts, "I have come in My Fatherís name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, you will receive him.

Two things evidenced their lack of love for God. First they rejected Christ, the Fatherís "Representative." To insult or reject oneís ambassador is the same as rejecting him. Second, ironically they accepted other authorities, unfortunately they were false teachers or prophets. This reveals a lack of connection with the truth.

Verse 44 declares that those whose desire is to receive glory from man will not seek glory from God. "How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and you do not seek the glory that is from the one and only God?

An additional failure was their desire for acceptance and approval from sinful men while ignoring the favor and the will of the only God. True faith was impossible because they were seeking the wrong approval: manís, not Godís. They were more concerned with establishing their own reputation and importance that in obeying the revelation of God which would bring His approval. Being sensitized to the opinion of man keeps us from believing and seeking the glory of God.
The issue is the glory of self which is the glory of man verses the glory of God (Jn. 12:43). This issue divides men still. The lack of belief in God and love for God always causes us to seek manís approval.

III. BELIEF IN SCRIPTURES LEADS TO BELIEF IN JESUS, 45-47.

The final witness is contained in the next element of Jesusí defense beginning in verse 45. "Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father; the one who accuses you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope.

Jesus came as the Savior, not as the Judge (3:17). It was unnecessary for Him to accuse the people. Moses, whom they claimed to follow, would condemn them because they had broken the covenant he instituted and missed the Person he wrote about. On whom your hopes are set implies that they thought salvation would come by their good deeds in keeping the Law. No one is saved by Law keeping. The law accuses us and exposes us as sinners.
Jesusí accusation stung. The Pharisees prided themselves of being the true followers of Moses. Jesus warning that Moses would accuse them would make them furious.
The pharisees had deceived themselves into thinking they followed Moses or the writings of Moses. Verse 46 indicates that they actual disbelieved Moses. "For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me.

Moses was a great prophet of God who wrote the first five books of Scripture. His prophetic words about the Messiah are unequivocal (in Genesis 3:15; 49:10; Exodus 12:21; Leviticus 16:5; Numbers 21:9; 21:17; Deuteronomy 18:15). Moses is the "patron saint" of Judaism, the defender
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