Why don’t you understand what I say? Because you cannot listen to My word. You are of your father the Devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and has not stood in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he speaks from his own nature, because he is a liar and the father of liars. John 8:43-44 HCSB
Urban Dictionary reports that the saying “Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire” is a playground taunt that is used by children whenever they think the other is lying. It refers to the fact that “fibbing” or not telling the truth is considered naughty, and “pants on fire” is a euphemism for spanking.
Jesus did not pull any punches. He called the religious leaders liars. They did not understand and accept Jesus’ teachings because of their stubbornness, pride, and prejudices. Their attitudes and actions indicated they were followers of the Devil instead of God. Their hatred of the truth, their lies, and their murderous intentions indicated they were controlled by the Devil.
Challenge: The Devil still uses people today to destroy lives and tear down the church of God. Be careful that the Devil does not have control of your life. Read God’s Word and follow its teachings. The more you know and understand the Scriptures the better you will be able to stand against the schemes of the Devil.
Therefore, I told you that you will die in your sins. For if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.” John 8:24 HCSB
When I served on staff at Delaney Street Baptist Church in Orlando, Florida we scheduled a regular visitation night each week. I would pick up some prospect cards and head out to make visits. This was in the age before GPS, so I used the old-fashioned method – a map. Too many times I would find myself at a dead end. There are over 150 lakes within the city limits of Orlando. Often a road would come to a lake and dead end, only to begin again on the other side of the lake. I often had to find my way around the lake and pick up the road on the other side.
People around the world are trying to find the way to heaven. Some think that being a good person will earn them a spot in heaven. Others think that following the teachings of a religious leader will be the way to heaven. Jesus clearly stated that He is the way to heaven. If a person does not believe in Him, he will die in his sins. Another way to say this is, “If a person does not believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, who died on the cross for the sins of the world and rose from the dead, then he is at a dead end and will not find his way to heaven.”
Challenge: Are you dead in your sins? It is as simple as ABC to know for sure you will not end up at a dead end. A – Admit you are a sinner. B – Believe that Jesus is the Son of God, He died for your sins, and He rose from the dead. C – Confess Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Do not die in your sins; instead, believe in Jesus. He is the only way.
“You judge by human standards. I judge no one. And if I do judge, My judgment is true, because I am not alone, but I and the Father who sent Me judge together. Even in your law it is written that the witness of two men is valid. I am the One who testifies about Myself, and the Father who sent Me testifies about Me.” John 8:15-18 HCSB
My grandmother served as Justice of the Peace in Amarillo, Texas for 25 years. She had countless cases come before her and was required to judge each case on its own merit and determine what was right based upon the laws. She was elected to her position understanding the responsibility of fairly judging those who were accused of breaking the laws.
The Pharisees judged people by human laws and standards. Humans are not perfect, therefore human judgment is never perfect. Jesus is the one and only perfect and true judge. Because He judges by God’s standards, His judgment is always right and fair.
Challenge: Some overemphasize God’s judgment, while others emphasize God’s mercy, love, and forgiveness. Know that someday everyone will stand before God and will face His fair judgment. God will give love and forgiveness to those who believe in His Son but will fairly give punishment to those who have broken His laws and do not believe in His Son. Are you ready for judgment?
Then Jesus spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.” John 8:12 HCSB
I recently upgraded my cell phone and was delighted to find one of its features is a flashlight created by the camera flash. I have already used this feature several times. Recently I was looking for an item in our storage area, and I used the light to shine into boxes to visualize the contents inside. I found it helpful to have the extra light to illuminate the way.
Jesus was probably teaching in the area of the Temple where the offerings were placed. It was also the place where candles were burning to symbolize the pillar of light that led the Israelites in the wilderness. In context, Jesus referred to Himself as the Light of the world. Just as the pillar of fire led the Israelites, Jesus lights the way for those who believe in Him. The pillar of light represented God’s presence and Jesus brings God’s presence to all mankind.
Challenge: Are you living in the light or are you still in the dark? We live in a dark world filled with sin. Only Jesus can light the way and help us avoid the sin and darkness of our world.
Then the Jews said to one another, “Where does He intend to go so we won’t find Him? He doesn’t intend to go to the Dispersion among the Greeks and teach the Greeks, does He? What is this remark He made: ‘You will look for Me, and you will not find Me; and where I am, you cannot come’?” John 7: 35-36 HCSB
As a student of the Bible I have many questions about the meaning of certain passages. I own several study Bibles and a set of commentaries that help me in discerning the real meaning of a verse or passage. But even after years of study, I am still discovering new insights and meanings of Scripture.
The people had many questions about Jesus. They did not understand the context of what Jesus was saying. When Jesus said He was going where no one could find Him, Jesus was talking about leaving and returning to His Father in heaven. Even today there are people reading the Bible and seeking to completely understand all of its teachings.
Challenge: Few people can read the Bible and understand it without outside help. Invest in a good study Bible and some commentaries that will help you to understand the Bible. Get involved in a small group Bible study and spend time with God in personal Bible reading and prayer to build a better relationship with Christ and understand His teachings.
As He was teaching in the temple complex, Jesus cried out, “You know Me and you know where I am from. Yet I have not come on My own, but the One who sent Me is true. You don’t know Him; I know Him because I am from Him, and He sent Me.” John 7: 28-29 HCSB
My son, Nathan, has an interest in our family genealogy. He has researched and discovered that the Moore family ancestors actually originated in middle Tennessee. My great- grandfather graduated from Vanderbilt University and was a medical doctor. Nathan has interviewed his grandmother and grandfather to discover information about our family history. He has explored census records and old newspapers to research our family members. It is interesting to hear some of the history he has discovered.
Jesus had an earthly genealogy that is recorded in book of Matthew but this Scripture tells us that Jesus was sent from God. His heavenly genealogy verifies Jesus is the Son of God. God sent Him to earth to live a perfect life and show us how to live in a way that will bring honor and glory to His heavenly father. God also sent Him to die on the cross as the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of the world so anyone who believes in Him can receive mercy and forgiveness.
Challenge: You can not change your genealogy, but you can change the spiritual legacy that you leave for your children and family. What type of legacy are you leaving?
Yet, look! He’s speaking publicly and they’re saying nothing to Him. Can it be true that the authorities know He is the Messiah? But we know where this man is from. When the Messiah comes, nobody will know where He is from.” John 7: 26-27 HCSB
The people argued about whether Jesus was the promised Messiah. Some believed and some did not. Some mistakenly thought that the Messiah would mysteriously arrive in the world and no one would know His origin, but this idea cannot be supported in the Old Testament. Since many knew where Jesus came from, they did not believe He was the promised Messiah.
The Hebrew word, “Messiah,” means “anointed one.” In Jesus’ encounter with the woman at the well in Samaria, Jesus clearly stated that He was the promised Messiah. In Mark 8, Peter announced that Jesus was the Messiah. Many believed that the Messiah would be a political or military leader who would liberate the Jews from the Roman rule, but Jesus came as the suffering Servant of God.
Challenge: Do not doubt. Believe that Jesus is the Son of God, the promised Messiah. He is the “Lamb of God” who shed His blood on the cross as an atonement for the sins of the world. Believe in Him and accept Him as your personal Savior and Lord.
Jesus answered them, “My teaching isn’t Mine but is from the One who sent Me. If anyone wants to do His will, he will understand whether the teaching is from God or if I am speaking on My own. John 7:16-17 HCSB
God has allowed me to speak and preach in many different venues. My prayer is always that I will move out of the way and allow God to speak through me. There have been times when I felt very comfortable and the words just seemed to flow. It was on these occasions that I really felt God was in control.
Jesus clearly said that His teaching was from God who had sent Him. The people were puzzled because the religious authorities were trying to kill Jesus, yet He spoke to them in an open forum and the religious leaders seemed to be interested in what Jesus had to say.
Challenge: Listen to Jesus and do what He says. His Words are from God the Father who knows what is best for you. Seek to do His will. He wants you to have an abundant life.
When the festival was already half over, Jesus went up into the temple complex and began to teach. Then the Jews were amazed and said, “How does He know the Scriptures, since He hasn’t been trained?” John 7:14-15 HCSB
While in seminary I contemplated continuing my education and pursuing a doctor’s degree, but God called me to a church in Florida directly after graduation. I have done some additional training from time to time through the years and have received information about continuing my education, but it never seemed the right time. Having higher education is not necessary to do ministry, but it certainly may open doors that make it possible for one to be more effective in ministry.
Jesus had probably received the same training as most Jewish boys. He would have learned to read, write, and quote much of the Old Testament, but He did not have the formal higher education that would have qualified Him as a rabbi. Yet, the people were amazed that He understood and taught the Scriptures as one with great knowledge and training.
Challenge: Jesus knew the Scripture and has taught us through His Word, the Bible, how we should live our lives. Follow His teachings and do what will bring honor and glory to His kingdom.
“I assure you: Anyone who believes has eternal life. I am the Bread of life.” John 6:47-48 HCSB
I heard a story of a little five year old girl upon seeing the picture of a child in a third world country suffering from malnutrition asked her father, “What is wrong with the little boy?” The father explained that the little boy looked that way because he had not had very much to eat to which the little girl said, “That is just pretend, isn’t it Dad?” It is hard for a five year old girl who has grown up eating three healthy meals each day to understand how a little boy would not have much to eat. Food and water are essential for life.
Jesus used the metaphor of bread to explain that He was the Bread of life. Those who believe in Him and accept Him as personal Savior will receive bread that will give them eternal life. Jesus provides what people need for their spiritual hunger. Just like we need physical bread to sustain life here on earth, we need the spiritual Bread of life found only in Jesus to enjoy life to its fullest, spent in a joyful, never-ending relationship with God.
Challenge: Are you hungry for the Bread of life? Taste and eat of spiritual bread and you will receive everlasting life. You can have eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ.