Note from JesusDear Disciple,

In the verses below, I want you to notice a few things about the ongoing contentious dealings I had with the religious leaders. They couldn’t make Me back down or compromise the truth that I was speaking to them. They finally did what folks who are losing an argument sometimes do: they started calling Me names — using ugly, racial and religious slurs. If they couldn’t defeat My truth, then they were going to try to discredit Me and beat Me up with vile words intended to brand and shame Me.

I want you to notice especially two statements that I make. Both of these are astounding claims that I would later back up with the cross and the resurrection!

First, I make you an incredible promise in the middle of all the contentious words:I tell you the truth, anyone who hears My voice and keeps My word will never experience death.Yes, I know that your body is going to die, but the real you will not die. The real you will be joined to Me (Colossians 3:1-4) and I will give you a new and glorious body when I return for you in My glory (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:42-44). Because you belong to Me, death cannot have you, claim you, or hold you!

Second, I claim to be God — the one true and living God, Yahweh, the great I AM Who revealed Himself to Moses (Exodus 3:13-15):I tell you the truth; I AM before Abraham was born.They did not misunderstand Me. They either had to believe in Me or count Me as a blasphemer. The devil had so blinded them to all the good things that I had done that they could not see that the Father had sent Me.

So, dear disciple, don’t miss either truth. Because I AM God and lived among you as one of you. I became like you so that you can come and live with Me in the presence of the Father and all those who have honored Him with their lives. What John said about Me at the beginning of his gospel is true (John 1:1-18).[See Note] If you can’t remember it, then go back and read it once again before you read the discussion below. I think you will find it makes the same two points I just shared with you!

[Note] John 1:1-18 is called “The Prologue” and is famous for its beauty as well as its theological depth. Jesus is called “The Logos” which is often translated “The Word” or “The Message” of God. In these eighteen verses John teaches that Jesus is God’s ultimate “Word” or “Message” to us. (Hebrews 1:1-3, Philippians 2:6-11, and Colossians 1:15-23 make similar claims about Jesus). “The Word” was…With God in the beginning with God and thus He was pre-existent to all created things.By nature and character God.Creator of everything that has been made.The source of all life.Light for the world and for all people.The Light that has shined in the darkness and couldn’t be extinguished.Not recognized by the world when he came, but for those who received Him, He became the source of new birth and eternal life.God come in human flesh to reveal God and make Him known.The One Who came to bring grace and truth; the Someone far superior to any and all law.[RETURN]Verses to LiveIn these verses, you are dropping in on a contentious discussion between the religious leaders and Me. They are determined to label Me as someone evil. I will not let them, but instead make the two incredible claims: those who believe in Me will never die and I not only do the Father’s will, but I AM God Who walks among them.Jews:We were right when we called You a demon-possessed Samaritan.Jesus:I’m not taken by demons. You dishonor Me, but I give all glory and honor to the Father. But I am not pursuing My own fame. There is only One Who pursues and renders justice. I tell you the truth, anyone who hears My voice and keeps My word will never experience death.Jews:We are even more confident now that You are demon-possessed. Just go down the list: Abraham died, the prophets all died. Yet You say, “If you keep My word, you will never taste death.” Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died; remember? Prophets — are any of them still alive? No. Who do You think You are?Jesus:If I were trying to make Myself somebody important, it would be a waste of time. That kind of fame is worth nothing. It is the Father Who is behind Me, urging Me on, giving Me praise. You say, “He is our God,” but you are not in relationship with Him. I know Him intimately; even if I said anything other than the truth, I would be a liar, like you. I know Him, and I do as He says. Your father Abraham anticipated the time when I would come, and he celebrated My coming.Jews:You aren’t even 50 years old, yet You have seen and talked with Abraham?Jesus:I tell you the truth; I AM before Abraham was born.The people picked up stones to hurl at Him, but Jesus slipped out of the temple. Their murderous rage would have to wait.
(John 8:48-59)Response in PrayerGod Almighty, the great I AM, Who is and Who was and Who is to come, I thank You for becoming human flesh, defeating sin and death, and giving me new life through my faith in Jesus and His triumph over Satan, sin, and death through the cross and the resurrection. I praise You and thank You in Jesus’ name. Amen.’A Year with Jesus’ is written by Phil Ware. © 1998-2022, Heartlight, Inc. ‘A Year with Jesus’ is part of the Heartlight Network.All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Voice™. © 2008 by Ecclesia Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Source: Passion for Praise