Summary: We CHOOSE to HEAR God or Reject HIM!
OCTOBER 8, 2000
INTRODUCTION: A PRINCIPLES FRUSTRATION/ AMSTERDAM 2000
TRANSITION SENTENCE: Our text this day teaches us that there will be those who “Leave Jesus.” There will be those who cannot understand what Jesus is saying.
THESIS SENTENCE: [We CHOOSE to HEAR God or Reject HIM!]
I. LISTENING TO JESUS ISN’T EASY (V. 60) [SOME JUST DON’T GET IT!]
A. The Story of the “OFFENSIVE MESSAGE”
1. Context is everything. Jesus has just told the disciples, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and Drink his blood, you have no life in you (vv. 53).”
2. Now why on earth would that be an offensive statement?
3. Do you have a problem with Cannibalism?!
B. The origin of the offensive message.
1. Chapter 6 records the feeding of the five (5) thousand.
2. Jesus was the most popular man in town.
3. So much so that the crowd wanted to make Him King (vv. 15)
4. SO, Jesus gets out of town and we read that He Walked on water to do so (vv. 16-24).
5. Once more the crowd wants to find this “ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFET MAN.”
6. They find Jesus and ask, “Where on earth have you been?”
7. JESUS GET’s OFFENSIVE: “I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill (vv. 26).”
ILLUSTRATION: A little over a century ago, Leo Tolstoy tried puzzling out a plan to rid Moscow of the poor and homeless. The famed novelist and wealthy aristocrat first went to the worst hovels in town and gave money to beggars. He realized, however, that he had been “cheated by men who said they only needed money to buy a railway ticket home” when he spotted them still in town days later. Next, Tolstoy spent several months helping take the Moscow census, searching for the “Truly” needy. But Tolstoy saw the homeless could not be helped merely by “feeding and clothing a thousand people as one feeds and drives under shelter a thousand sheep.” At last, he sadly concluded: “Of all the people I noted down, I really helped none… I did not find any unfortunates who could be made fortunate by a mere gift of money.”
JESUS KNEW THAT BREAD ALONE DOES NOT SATISFY!
C. The Meaning of the offensive message.
1. Now that the crowd has been reprimanded, they ask, “What must we do to do the works God requires (vv. 28)?”
2. Jesus reply is offensive and is the meaning of the offensive message, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent (vv. 29).”
3. The crowd brings up the past, Moses, and signs from God, but Jesus remains in the present, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty (vv. 35).”
4. For more clarity on the matter, Jesus ads, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him... (vv. 44)”
Now I have a problem here! What is Jesus saying? Can’t just anyone come to Him to be saved? Isn’t salvation open to everyone? Why must the Father draw me if I am to come to Jesus?
5. Jesus understands that we are slow and need more information. Jesus clarifies the situation by saying, “Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me (vv. 45).”