Summary: Message 11 from John cover Jesus' bold claims.
“The Father’s Son”
A most familiar Christmas carol asks a very important question; “What Child is this?” People though the ages have tried to speculate about this most significant figure in human history. Some have even tried to discredit his uniqueness.
I praise God for the written record from eyewitnesses to the life and ministry of Jesus. One of those witnesses was even someone from the inner circle of Jesus. John wrote so that all may come to believe and remain firm in their belief that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God and in believing might experience genuine life through His name. He showed us his power over the elements of nature in Chapter 2 when he turned ordinary water to extraordinary wine. He highlighted his saving work in Chapter three in a conversation with Nicodemus.
In chapter 4 He brought us face to face with Jesus as the source of living water and eternal life. He affirmed the power of Christ to reverse the curse of sin with its consequences of disease, sickness and death in the last part of chapter 4 when he healed the little child of a government official and then chapter 5 when he completely healed a man unable to walk for 38 years. John illustrated how Jesus touched people from every walk of life.
He shows in his writing how people form all walks of life came to believe in him. He also shows, as he clearly indicated in his introductory chapter, that some would not receive Him.
This morning we look at some who reacted to the ministry of Jesus and His powerful answer to their objections.
Turning to John’s account in chapter 5 we see that not everyone responded positively to the miraculous demonstration of the Jesus’ ability to reverse the effects of sin on mankind. They also react to some clear bold claim made by Jesus concerning his relationship with God. After this clear demonstration of healing power, the religious leaders of the time scramble to discredit Jesus. They became so focused on the violation of their rules; they missed the wonder of a man’s release from a lifetime infirmity.
Now it was the Sabbath on that day. Therefore the Jews were saying to him who was cured, "It is the Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your pallet." But he answered them, "He who made me well was the one who said to me, 'Take up your pallet and walk.'" They asked him, "Who is the man who said to you, 'Take up your pallet, and walk'?" But he who was healed did not know who it was; for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place. Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, "Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse may befall you." The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. And for this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because He was doing these things on the Sabbath. John 5:9-16
John records Jesus’ response to their objections concerning His work on the Sabbath.
“My Father is working and I am myself am working.” John 5:17
Jesus clearly communicates to the religious leaders that he followed a different set of rules than the set extra rules established by them through a misunderstanding of God’s original Sabbath command. He most emphatically asserted that His work on earth was a direct extension of the Father’s will and work. Jesus drew attention to the fact that His miracles and teaching demonstrated His divine origin and that He alone was the source of hope and eternal life. I think what irked the guy was the fact that Jesus did not function by their authority but the Father’s authority. The fact that he did not answer to them, the guardians of the religious world irritated them and even threatened them.
John indicates that these jaded Jews understood His claim perfectly.
For this cause therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God. John 5:18
This wasn’t the only time Jesus irked the religious leaders by his Sabbath practice. His attitude was that God established the Sabbath for man’s benefit. It was to be a time set aside to focus on one’s devotion to God.
It was a time to help keep our focus and priorities in line and demonstrate to those around that we are God’s special people. From here now to the end of the chapter, John records Jesus’ extended answer to the Jews in which we find some compelling claims.