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Adversity Attitude Comfort Heart Perspectives of a Bondservant

lest they should be put out

Perhaps even sadder than those who refused to consider the evidence for Christ, are those who Joh speaks of in the next verses. In John 12:42-43 we read of many who did believe in Jesus but refused to follow Him.

They did this because they were motivated by fear of what they would lose. They had grown up as a part of the Jewish synagogue. It had been a part of the very fabric of their lives. They knew that Jesus was the Christ, but they also knew that following Him meant that they would be thrown out of the synagogue.

So, rather than following the Savior, and following what they knew to be right, they stayed where they were. They stayed where they were comfortable. They stayed where they didn’t have Jesus Christ.

Sometimes following Jesus calls us to leave behind that which is familiar, and that which is comfortable. Sometimes it means losing relationships and a community. But it will always be worth it. Who is more important in your life; people, or God?

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Attitude Faith Heart Perspectives of a Bondservant

Although He Had Done Many Signs

It is not uncommon to hear somebody say that if they received a sign from God they would believe, or maybe to wish for a sign from God telling them what they should do. Perhaps you have felt that way yourself, or maybe even feel that way right now.

It is interesting to note that here in John 12:36-40 we learn that Jesus had performed many signs in the presence of these people who were now at Jerusalem for the feast. These were religious people, people who on some level wanted to please God. Yet, when faced with an abundance of miraculous proof that Jesus is the Christ, they refused to believe.

John comments that this is a fulfillment of a prophecy in Isaiah. It is interesting to note that this is not the only occasion in which this particular prophecy is said to be fulfilled. That tells us that the prophecy wasn’t about a singular event, but rather a frame of mind. There are many today who fulfill this prophecy because they have no desire to even consider the evidence that is before them.

The question that each of us must answer is whether we are willing to open our eyes and see what God has said.

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Perspectives of a Bondservant

If I Am Lifted Up

In John chapter twelve Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, beginning the week that would end in His crucifixion. On that occasion, He declared, “if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself” (verse 32).

Here He spoke of His crucifixion, in which He would literally be lifted up from the earth within the week. His death would become THE pivotal event in all of earth’s history. In His death, He calls all people of all places to follow Him. He offers salvation, the forgiveness of sins, and eternal life.

The cross of Christ draws attention to Him like no other person ever to walk this earth. As we learn about Jesus, we must make a decision whether to follow Him or reject Him, but we can not ignore Him.

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Perspectives of a Bondservant

Our Prayer for All

In 1 Timothy 2:1-4 we are encouraged to have a specific kind of prayer life. “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”

When each of us looks at this verse what do we see? I think most of us see the need to pray. We daily try to include our friends, family, fellow Christians, and people in authority in our prayers because we know how important it is, but what are a few other lessons that we can learn from this text?

I want to draw our attention to the phrase, “all people”. There are people in this world that we have never met. Some live in other countries and some live just down the street. They are in need of our prayers. Then there are people that we have met but we do not get along with very well. Yes, even our enemies are in need of our prayers. Then there are the people that we thought were doing ok and we sometimes just forget. This list oftentimes includes our family, friends, and fellow Christians. Let us not make the assumption that just because we do not see something bad happening in somebody’s life that they do not need our prayers. If we look back at verse one, we are told to offer up “supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings for all people”. We see within this that we are to pray for specific things that are happening in the lives of people and that those prayers are to be for good and bad circumstances that people may be currently facing. With our prayers, we petition God for so many things: guidance, forgiveness, help, strength, wisdom, endurance, and so much more. But we also use our prayers to lift up praise and glory to the Father and thank Him for all that He has done, is doing, and continues to do every day of our lives. Our prayers not only benefit all lives here and now, but they also have an impact on our eternal destination. God wants “all people to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth”. Let us today offer up prayers for all people, no matter the circumstances, and let us pray that all people will come to the knowledge of God and His Word, be obedient to Him, and remain faithful all the days of their lives. This is our prayer for all.

 

Derek Broome