Summary: We are to truly know Jesus.
Sunday Night: Know Jesus
Text: John 7.25-31
CT: We are to truly know Jesus.
When the Bible scholar N.T. (Tom) Wright was asked what he would tell his children on his deathbed he said, "Look at Jesus." Tom Wright explained why:
The [Person] who walks out of [the pages of the Gospels] to meet us is just central and irreplaceable. He is always a surprise. We never have Jesus in our pockets. He is always coming at us from different angles … If you want to know who God is, look at Jesus. If you want to know what it means to be human, look at Jesus. If you want to know what love is, look at Jesus. And go on looking until you're not just a spectator, but part of the drama that has him as the central character.
Marlin Whatling, The Marriage of Heaven and Earth (CreateSpace, 2016), page 129
Read John 7 14-24
John 7.25-29, 25 At that point some of the people of Jerusalem began to ask, “Isn’t this the man they are trying to kill? 26 Here he is, speaking publicly, and they are not saying a word to him. Have the authorities really concluded that he is the Messiah? 27 But we know where this man is from; when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”
28 Jesus, still teaching in the temple courts, cried out, “Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own authority, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him, 29 but I know him because I am from him and he sent me.”
People often assume they know more about Jesus than they really do. They have never taken the time to explore what he actually claimed about himself. So, they make wild, outlandish statements about him that are far from true.
As Jesus taught in the temple the first time, some Jews did the same thing. They thought they knew Jesus’ identity. They knew he was Joseph’s son. He lived in a very plain house. Definitely not a large mansion like a messiah would live in. It was way to plain for a messiah. They concluded the messiah could not come from a background like Jesus had.
They failed to realize where Jesus’ real home was.
He was sent from heaven. He didn’t come, he was sent. He was asked by his Father to leave the splendor of heaven and come to the squalor of this world. What a tough decision Jesus had to make right at the first. But He chose to come.
You know why he was sent by the father, don’t you? He became a baby in a manger to live the righteous life we couldn’t live because of our sin.
He was sent to die a hideous death that was ours because of the way we lived. He took our shame upon himself and gave us his righteousness. This was all a gift by grace through faith rooted in the Father’s love for us.
Jesus knows the Father. He came from Him. The father alone sent the Son.
And Jesus gladly obeyed so that we could be forgiven of our sins and have an intimate, personal and dynamic relationship with Him forever. It was for love for us that He came.
Imagine you are twelve years old again, and you love baseball. All your heroes are baseball players, all your extracurricular time is spent either with a ball glove in hand or watching a game on television, and, regardless of the season, it's been that way as long as you can remember. It's not that you're particularly good or particularly bad at baseball, you just love the game—the smack of the bat after a line drive, the smell of the grass, the feel of sliding headlong into second base. You've never had to defend it or describe it that way, but that's what you feel. And you can imagine one day having a jersey with your name on the back.
Things have begun to feel a little different this season, though, because twelve-year-olds have to try out for JV teams at the end of the year, and you get the feeling that not everyone makes the cut. You suddenly find yourself comparing your fielding skills with the other infielders and with players from other teams, and you start to count the number of times you miss balls that are hit to you. You keep track of how many strikeouts you get in each game.
Your coach has a way of calling you out, too. In one particularly bad stretch of the season, your coach calls across the field after you make yet another missed fielding play, "That's four times this game! Keep your head down!" You don't keep your head down, though, and after the fifth ground ball makes its way between your legs, your coach demotes you to the outfield. You replay his voice in your head. At your next at-bat, you strike out quickly, and you wonder if baseball is your sport after all.