Summary: First in new series from John's Gospel. Link inc. to formatted text, audio, PowerPoint.
When God Became a Man
It's not the Gospel of John, it's the gospel of Jesus! But I'm pleased today to begin a major new series in John's Gospel.
King Solomon stood in the lavish temple he had built and said,
But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?
If God did dwell on the earth, what would He be like? What would He say? What would He do? This is the astounding theme of our text. God did indeed dwell on the earth...as a man...a human being!
The four gospels are not biographies. A biography has the idea of entirety, but the last verse of this book makes it clear that this is only a portion.
And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
The gospels are not the full picture...they are snapshots from the life of Christ.
ill.--this week I showed you pictures from Ecuador. Each is worth a thousand words, but pictures pale by comparison to the real thing. As amazing as the gospels are, someday we will see the real thing, and walk with Him and talk with Him and touch Him, and we will know everything which that unwritten, earth sized library of books could have imparted to us!
Matthew wrote with the Jews in mind, and emphasized Jesus as King of the Jews.
Mark wrote with the Romans in mind, and emphasized Christ as the suffering servant.
Luke wrote with the Greeks in mind, and emphasized Christ as the Son of Man.
But John wrote with both Jews and all Gentiles in mind, emphasizing Jesus Christ as the Son of God!
John will stress the prophecies of Christ in the OT, as well as the types and symbols of Christ in the OT. These were old pictures John pulled out of the big book, which pointed to something which was to come later in the NT.
The entire Bible is about Jesus Christ...all of history is HIS story. He's on every page in types, symbols, and shadows. And the gospel of John explains the fulfillment of all of those in the person of Jesus.
Example: It is in John that we learn that Jesus IS the lamb from OT sacrifices.
Here is the theme of the entire Bible: It is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world!
Adam and Eve sinned. Their boys inherited that sin nature. Both were told to bring a sacrifice for their sins. Abel brought a lamb, Cain brought fruits and vegetables / Abel’s offering was accepted, Cain’s rejected…what made the difference? The Blood of the lamb!
That’s Gen. 4:4—it was a lamb for one man in those days.
Next we come to Ex. 12, where God told every family to take one lamb, sacrifice it, and apply its blood to the top of the doorpost and the sides (what were they forming? A cross!)
Now it’s a lamb for each fam.
Lev. 16—God told the high priest to kill a lamb for the sins of the whole nation (this was done once a year for hundreds of years)
A lamb for the whole land.
Here’s the best part:
Jn. 1—Jesus is introduced…Behold, the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world!
All the other lambs were leading up to this, they were just pictures of the perfect Lamb to come.
The Lamb to span all eternity! Now there's no need to sacrifice literal lambs...they were only pictures of Christ, and once you have the fulfillment, you no longer need the 'type.'
It is John who tells us that Jesus is the lamb of the OT.
It is John who tells us that Jesus is the ladder of the OT.
Ah, but who was the first to see this ladder? Jacob!
He ran away from the wrath of his brother Esau, and that first night out in the wilderness, with a stone for a pillow, he had a dream. A ladder stretched from earth to heaven, and angels went up and down...and now John clarifies that Jesus is that ladder, the only connection which exists between heaven and earth! Jesus is the only one who can take God by one hand and mankind by the other and bring them together in reconciliation!
It is John that tells us that Jesus is the temple of the OT.
Solomon's temple was made of gold, marble, and brass...magnificent...breathtakingly beautiful. And everything in that temple was a picture of Jesus, who was yet to come. Even the color schemes pictures aspects of His character and nature.