Thursday, March 17th – Sandi Johnson
Gospel: JN 8:51-59
Jesus said to the Jews:
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever keeps my word will never see death.”
So the Jews said to him,
“Now we are sure that you are possessed.
Abraham died, as did the prophets, yet you say,
‘Whoever keeps my word will never taste death.’
Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died?
Or the prophets, who died?
Who do you make yourself out to be?”
Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is worth nothing;
but it is my Father who glorifies me,
of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’
You do not know him, but I know him.
And if I should say that I do not know him,
I would be like you a liar.
But I do know him and I keep his word.
Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day;
he saw it and was glad.”
So the Jews said to him,
“You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?”
Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
before Abraham came to be, I AM.”
So they picked up stones to throw at him;
but Jesus hid and went out of the temple area.
Who Does He Think He Is?
It seems Jesus finds himself in a tough place when trying to pass on the promise of eternal life, but he ends up causing a riot. Jesus answers the questions of the crowd accurately, but because of their confusion and inability to comprehend that a young man standing before them could be the Messiah, they are ready to stone him.
It seems like the tipping point for the Israelites within this passage is “Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham came to be, I AM.” It’s not just the fact that Abraham is such a great father, a leader, a prophet and a priest to them and Jesus is saying he came before him, but the fact that he used the very words that God gave to Abraham to prove God’s very own existence, that causes a scandal! How dare this young man, Joseph’s son, come before us and preach about eternal life? Who does he believe he is? He must be possessed!!
What more does Jesus need to do for them to believe that he is the chosen one? Drive out more demons, raise another man from the dead, heal more sick, allow more people to see and walk?
It makes one wonder, how many times has the Lord shown answers to questions, paths we’re suppose to take and yet we do not choose to recognize them. How many times have we been outraged by something that truly is the work of God, but we just do not believe that God could possibly use that time or that place to give us a message. Such disbelief.
How can we use these last days of lent to see Christ more fully in life and not be “blind” to his message?
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