080518   Its About Time   John 7 1 24   Dale Wells
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080518 Its About Time John 7 1 24 Dale Wells

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A sermon on John 7:1-24 delivered at Palm Desert (California) Church of Christ on May 18, 2008, by Dale Wells

A sermon on John 7:1-24 delivered at Palm Desert (California) Church of Christ on May 18, 2008, by Dale Wells

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  • 1. ABOUT John 7:1-24
  • 2. Republican National Convention September 1-4 Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN
  • 3.  
  • 4. Democratic National Convention August 25-28 Denver, CO
  • 5.  
  • 6. Democratic National Convention 2008
  • 7. Democratic National Convention 2008 Possible Dark Horse Nominees
  • 8. Democratic National Convention 1844
  • 9. Democratic National Convention 1844
  • 10. Democratic National Convention 1852
  • 11. Republican National Convention 1860
  • 12. Republican National Convention 1876
  • 13. Republican National Convention 1880
  • 14. John 7:1-5 NIV
    • After this, Jesus went around in Galilee, purposely staying away from Judea because the Jews there were waiting to take his life. (2) But when the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles was near, (3) Jesus' brothers said to him, "You ought to leave here and go to Judea, so that your disciples may see the miracles you do. (4) No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world." (5) For even his own brothers did not believe in him.
  • 15. Feast of Tabernacles – one of three great Jewish feasts
    • Josephus called it their holiest and greatest feast (Antiquities 8.4.1)
    • Ordained in Leviticus 23:33-43 :
      • End of harvest
      • Commemorated wilderness wandering
      • Reminder of God’s care and presence
      • Lived in temporary shelters for one week
    • This occurred in October, about six months after the Passover in John 6:4
  • 16. The problem of unbelief
    • John 7:3-5 NIV Jesus' brothers said to him, "You ought to leave here and go to Judea, so that your disciples may see the miracles you do. (4) No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world." (5) For even his own brothers did not believe in him.
  • 17. Unbelief was an ongoing issue
    • His family
      • Mark 3:20-21 NIV Then Jesus entered a house, and again a crowd gathered, so that he and his disciples were not even able to eat. (21) When his family heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, "He is out of his mind."
    • His neighbors
      • Mark 6:3-4 NIV Isn't this the carpenter? Isn't this Mary's son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us?" And they took offense at him. (4) Jesus said to them, "Only in his hometown, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honor."
  • 18. Jesus enjoyed mass appeal until six months earlier
    • He drew 5,000 men to one sermon
      • Josephus puts Galilee’s population at 100,000 men
      • Comparable to Pepperdine Lectureship drawing 1.9 million Californians
    • He lost followers in droves
      • John 6:66 NIV From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.
      • This is the timing of – and the reason for – the Transfiguration ( Matthew 17:1-8 )
  • 19. His brothers urged him to go to Jerusalem to regain momentum
    • Jerusalem was the religious capital
    • Feast of Tabernacles would be the forum to present himself as Messiah
    • If he could just win Jerusalem, he could recapture the lost momentum
      • John 7:4 NIV No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world."
  • 20. God’s way is not man’s way
    • Man’s way:
      • If Jesus really was what he claimed to be, he should publicly demonstrate it in a powerful, brilliant way
    • God's way:
      • Jesus demonstrated himself by public display on a cross of humiliation, followed by resurrection from the dead
  • 21. Proximity to Jesus does not guarantee faith
    • John 1:10-11 NIV He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. (11) He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.
    • John 12:37 NIV Even after Jesus had done all these miraculous signs in their presence, they still would not believe in him.
  • 22. Our time is not God’s time
    • John 7:6-8 NIV Therefore Jesus told them, "The right time for me has not yet come; for you any time is right. (7) The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify that what it does is evil. (8) You go to the Feast. I am not yet going up to this Feast, because for me the right time has not yet come."
  • 23. John often noted that Jesus' time had not come
    • John 2:4 NIV "Dear woman, why do you involve me?" Jesus replied. "My time has not yet come."
    • John 7:30 NIV At this they tried to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him, because his time had not yet come.
    • John 8:20 NIV He spoke these words while teaching in the temple area near the place where the offerings were put. Yet no one seized him, because his time had not yet come.
  • 24. But Jesus knew when God’s time had come
    • John 12:23 NIV Jesus replied, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
    • John 12:27 NIV "Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.
  • 25. But Jesus knew when God’s time had come
    • John 13:1 NIV It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.
    • John 17:1 NIV After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: "Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.
  • 26. The world was not dangerous to the brothers of Jesus …
    • Because they were part of it
    • But the world hated Jesus because he is not of it
      • He pointed out its sin and rebellion against God
      • The world has its religions, programs, plans and values, but Christ said that it is all evil
  • 27. Because the world hated Jesus …
    • We who follow him can expect that many people will hate us as well.
    • If circumstances are going too well, ask if you are following Christ as you should
      • Be grateful when life goes well, but make sure it is not at the cost of following Jesus halfheartedly or not at all
  • 28. The Covert Christ
    • John 7:8-10 NIV You go to the Feast. I am not yet going up to this Feast, because for me the right time has not yet come." (9) Having said this, he stayed in Galilee. (10) However, after his brothers had left for the Feast, he went also, not publicly, but in secret.
  • 29. Most Greek editions of the NT omit the word “yet”
    • But it is more likely in the original
      • If Jesus said "I am not going up to the Feast," was he lying, since he did go to the Feast?
      • No, he simply meant that he was not going up to the Feast right then, as they suggested
      • He was intentionally being ambiguous
      • He stayed for a time in Galilee before going to Jerusalem
  • 30. Why did Jesus act secretly?
    • The religious leaders hated him and rejected him, no matter what he said or did
    • The more Jesus taught and worked publicly, the more they caused trouble for him and his followers
    • So it was necessary for Jesus to teach and work as quietly as possible
  • 31. We can teach and worship publicly with no persecution
    • We should be grateful and make the most of our opportunities to share Christ with others
  • 32. John 7:11-13 NIV
    • Now at the Feast the Jews were watching for him and asking, "Where is that man?" (12) Among the crowds there was widespread whispering about him. Some said, "He is a good man." Others replied, "No, he deceives the people." (13) But no one would say anything publicly about him for fear of the Jews.
  • 33. Everyone was talking about Jesus!
    • But when it came time to speak up for him in public, no one said a word
    • Many of us talk about Christ in church, but when it comes to making a public statement about our faith, we are embarrassed
      • Matthew 10:32 NIV "Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven.
  • 34. John 7:14-15 NIV
    • Not until halfway through the Feast did Jesus go up to the temple courts and begin to teach. (15) The Jews were amazed and asked, "How did this man get such learning without having studied?"
  • 35. The first three days passed without anyone seeing Jesus
    • The crowds wondered if he would come and claim to be the Messiah
    • Then halfway through the Feast he began teaching in the temple courts
    • As the religious leaders listened to him along with the crowds they were amazed
    • His teaching was learned and spiritually penetrating, yet he had never been a disciple in any Rabbinic school
  • 36. John 7:16-18 NIV
    • Jesus answered, "My teaching is not my own. It comes from him who sent me. (17) If anyone chooses to do God's will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own. (18) He who speaks on his own does so to gain honor for himself, but he who works for the honor of the one who sent him is a man of truth; there is nothing false about him.
  • 37. The authorities assumed two possibilities:
    • Either a person studied in a traditional school or else he was self-taught
    • Jesus' reply pointed to a third alternative – his teaching was from God who had commissioned him
  • 38. Jesus was “God-taught”
    • To know Jesus properly, one must be "God-taught“
      • John 6:45 NIV It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me.
    • Jesus’ teaching exalted God, not self
      • John 1:18 NIV No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.
  • 39. Those who attempt to know God's will and do it …
    • Will know intuitively that Jesus was telling the truth about himself
    • Have you ever listened to religious speakers and wondered if they were telling the truth? Test them:
      • Their words should agree with, not contradict, the Bible
      • Their words should point to God and his will, not to themselves
  • 40. Jesus – Prescient, or Paranoid?
    • John 7:19-20 NIV Has not Moses given you the law? Yet not one of you keeps the law. Why are you trying to kill me?“ "You are demon-possessed," the crowd answered. "Who is trying to kill you?“
    • Remember: Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you!
  • 41. Most of the people were not aware of the plot to kill Jesus
    • But the plot had been going for some time among their leaders since he healed the paralytic in John 5
      • John 5:18 NIV For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.
    • There was a group looking for the chance to kill him, but most were still trying to decide what they believed about him
  • 42. The miracle Jesus referred to
    • Was his healing of the paralytic at the pool of Bethesda, which he had performed in Jerusalem at his last visit
    • Two points of the controversy:
        • Jesus healed the paralytic on the Sabbath, violating their Sabbath laws
        • He said, in essence, “God works on Saturdays, and so do I” – To the Jews, this was blasphemy, putting himself on a par with God
  • 43. Jesus’ response to the controversy
    • Circumcision was to be performed eight days after a baby's birth
    • If the eighth day was a Sabbath, the bris would still be performed (even though it was considered work)
    • The religious leaders allowed such exceptions to Sabbath laws, but not to Jesus, who was simply showing mercy to one who needed healing
  • 44. They understood the Scriptures only superficially
    • They majored in minors and missed the intent of many passages
      • John 7:24 NIV Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment."
      • John 5:39-40 NIV You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, (40) yet you refuse to come to me to have life.
  • 45. Matthew 23:23-24 NIV
    • "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. (24) You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.
  • 46. Two of Jesus’ brothers became Christian leaders
    • James and Jude
      • But for several years, they were embarrassed by Jesus.
      • After Jesus died and rose again, they finally believed.
  • 47. We today have every reason to believe
    • We have the full record of Jesus' miracles, death and resurrection
    • We also have the evidence of what the gospel has done in people's lives through the centuries
    • Don't miss this opportunity to believe in – and obey – God's Son!