Summary: To show truth can be learned and fully understood; and that, it is not the product of one’s feelings or religious experiences. This lesson deals with the truth of the gospel; that was revealed by the Holy Spirit unto the apostles, that affords the forgiveness of sins.
1. Discipleship of Christ: “Ye Shall Be My Disciples Indeed”
2. Doctrine of Christ: “Ye Shall Know The Truth”
3. Deliverance of Christ: “The Truth Shall Make You Free”
1. In our lesson today, Jesus describes to those Jews who followed him how they were to become His disciples; know the doctrine of truth and be delivered from their sin. He states to them which then believed on Him: “If you continue or abide in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed, and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free," John 8:31-32.
2. First, he says: "If ye continue or abide in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed." It is therefore clear that discipleship comes through continuing in the word of the Lord. Many are believers just like these Jews; but, are not yet disciples. Discipleship is promised to those that continue in the word of God.
3. Secondly, he says: "If you continue in my word, ye shall know the truth." The truth here is the "doctrine of Christ." Why IS IT SO IMPORTANT to know the truth? These Jews were believers; but were unaware of “the truth” which Jesus mentions. I should stress, that “the truth” promised by Jesus, was revealed by the Holy Spirit, after the Lord returned to heaven, John 16:13. It was not made know to these believers during the, “personal ministry of Jesus.”
4. Finally, he says: "If you continue in my word... know the truth ...which will deliver you from your sins." Once a sincere searcher has found and obeyed the truth; they were made free from their sins. Jesus said: "If the Son shall make you free, then are ye free indeed." Paul wrote: "But God be thanked that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine, which was delivered you, being then, made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness," Romans 6:17-18. With this introduction, let’s consider our first point.
BODY OF LESSON
I. DISCIPLESHIP OF CHRIST: “Then are ye my Disciples Indeed”
A. Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him. We should remember the audience who Jesus is now speaking unto. These are Jews that believe on Him and have followed him, and have accepted His teaching. However, we can see, just belief alone does not make one a disciple; or ensure they know the truth; or have been forgiven of (freed from) their sins.
B. Disciple means, "learner" or "follower."
1. Moses' disciples. Some Jews claimed to be Moses' disciples, John 9:27-29.
3. Disciples of Jesus:
b. The seventy followers are sent forth to preach, Luke 10:1ff.
c. It is truly interesting that when Jesus sent out His disciples during His personal ministry: They all preached the same thing. They had one message: “And as you go, preach saying, the kingdom of God is at hand,” Matthew 4:17.
e. Christ NOW reigns over His kingdom. Notice:
2) Christ reins over His kingdom NOW, 1 Corinthians 15:20-27.
C. "If you continue in my word." The words spoken by the Savior in the preceding discourse convinced many of his hearers - Jews. They "believed on him," but their faith was not yet made perfect through obedience.
1. Hence Jesus adds to the terms of discipleship. If you continue in my teaching or abide in it – “ye shall become my disciples indeed” e.g., truly, or of certainty.
2. The full truth of the gospel had not yet been revealed by the Lord, John 16:12. Illustrate: Can you handle the truth, John 3:1. Jewish leaders and these disciples believed on the Lord; but some, “would not confess Him,” John 12:42-43.
3. The Spirit was to guide the Apostles into all truth, John 16:13. We will speak to this later in the lesson.
4. Today, doctrinal differences discourage unity and causes religious divisions and confusion. If indeed we all believe the same things – then, why aren’t we all practicing the same things? 1 Corinthians 1:10; Philippians 3:16.
5. In truth many are not His disciples because they have not heard, believed and obeyed the truth – that make one a Disciple of Christ – indeed, (Gr., alethia, of certainty, surety or of a truth). Notice: