Summary: Rejection is a very common experience in our lives, but when Jesus appeared in the Flesh on the Earth He created, His own things and His own people rejected Him.
Rejection of THE Light
John 1:1-10 taught us that before Jesus appeared on earth, He was The Eternal Everlasting Word, The Eternal Son in relationship with the Father, The Everlasting God, The Creator Word, The Self-Existent Word, The Eternal Life-Giving Word, The Eternal Light-Bearing Word: John the Baptist and the Book of John witnesses to this Jesus and the Light of the World was not recognized by the World when He came into the World.
John 1:9-10, last week: “The true light that gives light (and He is the only light) to every man was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him.” Today we look at verse11: “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.”
We live in a world which is ripe with all kinds of rejection: There is tissue rejection, when a transplanted body organ, which was intended to save a sick person, is rejected by that person’s immune system. There is social rejection when an individual is excluded from a social relationship or interaction for social rather than realistic reasons. There is rejection from so-called friends or spouses, relationships that seemingly go sour with selfish sinfulness and leave people ostracized and hurting, but none of these examples compare to the dramatic rejection of the Lord Jesus Christ that we read about in John 1:11: “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.” This is not a mere repetition of verse 10, which is a generality, but a more specific reference. “Jesus appeared on earth at a point in time to his own things or His own home) but his own (PEOPLE) did not receive him.”
I. “He came to that which was his own (things, to what was His own, or even to His own home”: There is no part of the world which Jesus may not legitimately claim as his own. Psalm 24:1-2: “The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; 2 for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters.” All things belong to Him! All things are on loan to us by Him. The WORD, the Creator, and Light came, not to a foreign or strange universe, but to the very Creation He had created: He didn’t come as a thief or as a trespasser because He made the World and everything in it, and it belongs to Him.
The word used for His “OWN” (“idia”) is in the neuter and is demonstrated several other times in the New Testament to refer to your own “HOME”. Listen to John 16:32: "Behold, an hour is coming, and has already come, for you to be scattered, each to his own home, and to leave Me alone; and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me.”
In John 19:27, at Jesus’ command, John receives the mother of Jesus into his own home: “Then He said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" From that hour the disciple took her into his own household.
Jesus appeared in the World to the World generally, but it was not without preparation or announcement. He had come in the form of special revelation to the people of Israel in the law, prophecy and wisdom. He had adopted them as His precious possession out of all the peoples of the earth. The Psalmist recognized the same thing in Psalm 147:20: “He has done this for no other nation; they do not know his laws. Praise the LORD.”
II. Take an OLD TESTAMENT TRIP with me for a minute: The problem was NOT that they did not know Him. After Noah’s great grandson, Nimrod, attempted with others to build the tower of Babel in Genesis 11:4, God confused the language of people in order to scatter them. But God chose Abraham, the tenth generation from Noah through Shem, choosing Him to be the father of a people who would be God’s nation of Israel. But even Abraham followed his own way instead of God’s. In Gen. 17:18, after his impatience with God, Abraham says: “If only Ishmael might live under your blessings.” Abraham’s heart did not “naturally” desire God’s way.
Abraham’s son Isaac tried to bless Esau instead of Jacob even though God had chosen Jacob. The sons of Jacob later tried to murder their brother Joseph who had been chosen by God. Moses discovered the depravity of God’s people when they had no sooner left Egypt under God’s Miraculous Hand and the people murmured in Exodus 14:11-12: “Then they said to Moses, “Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? 12“Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.” Once again, REJECTING God’s will and way.