Insanity, Blasphemy, or Deity?

Have you settled the issue in your mind concerning who Jesus really is?

His high priestly prayer starts in John 17:1-5. Listen to his prayer:

“After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:
“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.
For you granted him authority over all people
that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him.
Now this is eternal life: that they know you,
the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do.
And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory
I had with you before the world began.”

There are only three explanations for everything you see and hear in Jesus’ prayer: Insanity, blasphemy, or deity.
Jesus is insane and out of his mind of which some accused Him.
Jesus blasphemed and desired to die which the Jewish leaders concluded.
Or Jesus is who He claims to be. The Son of the living God.
Who do you say that He is? Have you settled this issue in your mind?

Why not commit to settle this issue today!

For Romans 10:13 promises this: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

The Ultimate Hindrance to Our Church’s Mission

I came across this challenging quote in my study of Jesus’ High Priestly Prayer in John’s Gospel. What do you think of John Milne’s comment on John 17:21 and 23?

“The biggest barriers to effective evangelism according to the prayer of Jesus are not so much outdated methods, or inadequate presentations of the gospel, as realities like gossip, insensitivity, negative criticism, jealousy, backbiting, an unforgiving spirit, a root of bitterness, failure to appreciate others, self-preoccupation, greed, selfishness and every other form of lovelessness.”

Why not use the above to assess your own life and the quality of your relationships with others in the body of Christ?

The Biggest Barrier to Reaching People with the Gospel

John Milne, in his commentary on John’s Gospel, writes:

“The biggest barrier to effective evangelism according to the prayer of Jesus is not so much outdated methods, or inadequate presentations of the gospel, as realities like gossip, insensitivity, negative criticism, jealousy, backbiting, an unforgiving spirit, a root of bitterness, failure to appreciate others, self-preoccupation, greed, selfishness and every other form of lovelessness. These are the squalid enemies of effective evangelism which render the gospel fruitless and send countless thousands into eternity without a Savior.”

Let us pray that we would love one another well and, thus, see people come to vibrant faith in Jesus.

Reflections on What Jesus Desires for His Church

 

The prayer in John 17 is Jesus’ longest prayer recorded in Scripture. In it, Jesus reveals his priorities for His people and what he was most passionate about for us prior to His death for our sins. Christ does not pray that his disciples might be rich and great in the world, but that they might be kept from evil, strengthened for their duty, and brought safe to heaven.

– Adapted from Matthew Henry 

Every time we gather together we either strengthen or weaken the evangelistic appeal of our church by the quality of our relationships with our fellow church members. The biggest barriers to effective evangelism according to the prayer of Jesus are not so much outdated methods, or inadequate presentations of the gospel, as realities like gossip, insensitivity, negative criticism, jealousy, backbiting, an unforgiving spirit, a root of bitterness, failure to appreciate others, self-preoccupation, greed, selfishness and every other form of lovelessness.
These are the squalid enemies of effective evangelism which render the gospel fruitless and send countless thousands into eternity without a Savior.

John Milne

Although individual Christians, and the church in general, tend to fall short of the fullness of unity that the Lord intends, whenever such unity is even partially realized the result will always be deep joy, a persuasive witness to the world, and a display of God’s glory.

 

The Purpose of Jesus’ Prayer in John 17

Jesus’ high priestly prayer in John 17 serves as a pattern of His intercession that He carries on for us in heaven now. It also serves as an example for our own prayer life. In a nutshell, what Christ asks for us, we should ask for ourselves.

“Jesus here shows teachers an example, that they should not only occupy themselves in sowing the Word, but, by mixing their prayers with it, should implore God’s help that his blessing should make their work fruitful.” – John Calvin

“It is in prayer, costly, sustained, and prevailing, that the Word of God is released through teaching and preaching. Prayer is the price of power, and the church of Jesus Christ is not likely to recover its lost authority until this basic biblical truth is recovered.” – John Milne’s commentary on John 17