The Foundation of the Law & Prophets and Built on Revelation From the Father

Today’s selected reading continues in the New Testament gospel narrative of the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ as it was written by John Mark. More specifically today’s passage begins with the thirtieth verse of the ninth chapter and continues through to the twelfth verse of this New Testament book. “And they departed thence, and passed through Galilee; and he would not that any man should know it. For he taught his disciples, and said unto them, The Son of man is delivered into the hands of men, and they shall kill him; and after that he is killed, he shall rise the third day. But they understood not that saying, and were afraid to ask Him” (Mark 9:30-32). “And he came to Capernaum: and being in the house he asked them, What is it that ye deputed among yourselves by the way? But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest. And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all. And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them, Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth. Not me, but him that sent me” (Mark 9:33-37). “And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbid him, because he followeth not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. For he that is not against us is on our part. For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward. And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. For every one shall be salted with fire, and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt. Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his saltness, wherewith will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace one with another” (Mark 9:38-50). “And he arose from thence, and cometh into the coasts of Judaea by the father side of Jordan: and the people resort unto him again; and, as he was wont, he taught them again. And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? Tempting him. And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away. And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your hearts he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation of God made them male and female. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery” (Mark 10:1-12). When you come to this particular portion of Scripture you will find it beginning with the second account of Jesus teaching His disciples of the suffering He must endure—and not only the suffering He must endure but also how He would be delivered into the hands of men who would kill Him. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for these words and this second teaching concerning those things which He must needs suffer and how He must. Needs be killed would come immediately after the transfiguration of the Lord Jesus atop the mountain. In the opening verses of the ninth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark we find the account of Jesus taking Peter, James and John together with Him up into a high mountain after six days. It would be there atop the mountain where the Lord Jesus would be transfigured before their faces appearing in brightness greater than the sun and in garments whiter than any fuller or soap could clean. There atop the mountain the Lord Jesus would appear transfigured before these three disciples and would appear speaking together with both Moses and Elijah. On that mountain the appearance of the Lord Jesus would be transfigured before the faces of these three disciples who were sore afraid and were face down upon the ground as if dead at the sight of the Lord Jesus. Undoubtedly the disciples were not expecting on the Lord Jesus to be transfigured before them when He brought them up into the mountain and yet as they watched and observed His appearance would be altered before their very eyes as He would be transfigured and would appear in a measure of the glory He had with the Father since the beginning. In the opening verses of the ninth chapter we find the second account of the Lord Jesus taking with Him Peter, James and John up a high mountain where He would be transfigured before their faces. What makes this all the more intriguing when you take the time to consider it is that the Lord Jesus undoubtedly offered no advanced knowledge of what He was doing and what they should expect. The Lord Jesus led the disciples up into an high mountain knowing full well that He would be transfigured before their faces and would appear with a measure of the glory which He had with the Father before time began. This is something we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of for in the previous chapter we find the Lord Jesus coming into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi. It would be in the coasts of Caesarea Philippi the Lord would ask the disciples who men said that He the Son of man was. The disciples would speak up and reveal how some professed Him to be John the Baptist while others professed Him to be Elijah, or Jeremiah or one of the prophets. After Jesus heard the disciples recount the opinions of others concerning who He was He would make the question personal unto them and would ask them who they said that He the Son of man was. I have to admit I can’t help but wonder how long it took for Simon Peter to answer and respond to this question for Scripture reveals how Simon Peter spoke up and declared that Jesus was the Christ and the Son of the living God. I am absolutely convinced we must needs pay close attention to the words which are found in these passages of Scripture for they call and draw our attention to the incredible truth surrounding this encounter between Jesus and His disciples in the coasts of Caesarea Philippi. The Lord Jesus would ask the disciples who men said that He the Son of man was and I can’t help but wonder why He would ask such a question. Why would the Lord Jesus ask the disciples who men said that He the Son of man was—especially when He would flip the question and make it personal for them. The Lord Jesus would ask the disciples who men said that He the Son of man was and would follow it up with a question even more personal for it would strike at the very heart and core of who they believed Him to be. The Lord Jesus would ask the disciples who they personally said and believed Him to be. In all reality it was not the first question that was the greatest of the two questions but rather the second. It is the second question the Lord Jesus asked His disciples that would indeed call and draw their attention to the absolutely wonderful reality of the contrast which exists between the opinions of men and the belief and conviction of the disciples. If we want to truly understand the words which are found in this passage of Scripture we must needs acknowledge that it strikes at the very heart of the opinions of others concerning and about Jesus versus the belief and core conviction of the disciples themselves. What’s more is that these two questions might have been designed to not only ask them what others said about Him but also whether or not the disciples’ view of Him would be influenced and impacted by those opinions. The more I read the words found in this passage of Scripture the more I am brought face to face with the opinions of men versus the conviction of disciples. It is absolutely impossible to read the words found in this passage of Scripture and not encounter and come face to face with the truth surrounding Jesus’ first question which would call and invite the disciples to merely regurgitate the opinions of others and that which they heard men speak concerning Him. It would have been very easy to simply make the confession and declaration concerning Christ based on the opinions and views of others, however, it is something entirely and altogether different to be convinced and convicted of the identity of the Lord Jesus as being personally revealed by the Father. Perhaps one of the greatest questions we must needs ask ourselves when reading these words is whether or not the Father had revealed this same truth unto the other disciples. We know that Simon called Peter was the only one who spoke up in response to Jesus asking them who they said that He the Son of man was. We know that in response to Simon Peter’s confession and declaration the Lord Jesus would proclaim Simon blessed for flesh and blood had not revealed this unto him but His Father who was in heaven. It is important to recognize Jesus’ use of the phrase “flesh and blood” for when the disciples spoke of who others believed Jesus the Son of man to be they were undoubtedly speaking of this reality of “flesh and blood.” Flesh and blood would believe the Lord Jesus to be John the Baptist risen from the dead, or Elijah come again, or Jeremiah or perhaps even one of the prophets. What we must needs understand when reading the words found in this passage is that not only must we not allow ourselves to be consumed and caught up with the opinions of flesh and blood but we must also understand that flesh and blood cannot reveal unto us the true identity of the Lord Jesus. Within this passage of Scripture we find first the opinions of flesh and blood as well as the fallacy of flesh and blood as flesh and blood could never and will never reveal and make known unto us the identity of the eternal and only begotten Son of the living God. As you read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture you can and will be brought face to face with the absolutely wonderful question the Lord Jesus asked His disciples in the coasts of Caesarea Philippi. There in the shadow of mount Hermon where it was believed the sons of God came down and took counsel together Jesus would ask His disciples who men said that He the Son of man was. Jesus would indeed hear the opinions and views of those during that particular generation, however, Jesus was not ultimately concerned with the opinions and views of others. That which the Lord Jesus was truly concerned with was what the disciples personally believed concerning the Lord Jesus. What makes this all the more astonishing and captivating when you take the time to think about it is when you consider the fact that this question wasn’t merely presented unto Simon called Peter but was presented unto all of the disciples. What we must deduce and conclude from this is that it was indeed possible for each of the twelve disciples to have received this revelation from the Father concerning the identity of the Lord Jesus. I am absolutely convinced that it wasn’t merely unto Simon Peter whom this revelation from the Father could have come and could have been given but it would be unto all of the twelve disciples who walked with and followed the Lord Jesus. It would be Simon called Peter who would make the confession and declaration that Jesus was the Christ and the Son of the living God, however, we must also recognize and understand that the Lord Jesus asked this question of each of the twelve disciples. Thus each of the twelve disciples could and did have an opportunity to respond and answer the question the Lord Jesus asked. With all of this being said I can’t help but be reminded of the words which the apostle Paul wrote unto the saints of Rome in the tenth chapter of the epistle written and sent unto them. It would be in the tenth chapter of this epistle the apostle Paul would speak unto them concerning the nation and people of Israel and how he wished he could be cut off and accursed of God in their place. The apostle Paul knew and recognized how the nation and people of Israel had rejected the Messiah whom the Law and the prophets had spoken of and foretold. Perhaps this is what was so incredibly significant of Jesus’ being transfigured atop the mountain for not only did the Law and the prophets speak of Him but they also served as a powerful sign pointing men and women unto the Messiah and the Christ. Both the Law and the prophets presented men with powerful declarations and proclamations concerning the Messiah which would and should have served as signposts guiding them to the truth concerning who He was. In all reality I must say that there was no excuse for those during the days and generation of the Lord Jesus for they were such who had the Law and the prophets which spoke of and foretold concerning the Messiah and Christ who was to come. The Law and the prophets were such which spoke of the truth surrounding the coming of the Messiah and who He would be in the midst of the earth. This is something we must needs recognize and understand for it calls and draws our attention to the truth we find in the seventeenth chapter of the New Testament gospel written by the apostle Matthew as well as the words which are found in the ninth chapter of the New Testament gospel written by John Mark. It is in these two chapters we are brought face to face with the absolutely wonderful and powerful truth surrounding the law and the prophets and how the Law and the prophets would indeed speak of the coming of the Messiah and who the Messiah would indeed be. Having said this I feel it is absolutely necessary and imperative to call and draw your attention to the following words which are found in the tenth chapter of the New Testament epistle written by the hand of the apostle unto the saints which were at Rome. It is within these words we encounter and come face to face with the rejection of the Messiah by the children of Israel who had the Law and the prophets. In all reality the nation and people of Israel had everything they needed to recognize and understand the Messiah and Christ and yet they not only missed it but they would also reject Him. With this being said I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the following words which are found in the fifty-third chapter of the Old Testament prophetic book of Isaiah as well as the first chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John. It is in the fifty-third chapter of the prophetic book of Isaiah we find the prophet emphatically declaring concerning the children and people of Israel how they would despise and reject the Messiah when He would come unto and among them. The prophet Isaiah would not only see a suffering servant who would come unto the nation and people of Israel but the prophet would also reveal how despite the suffering of the Messiah He would experience rejection at the hands and hearts of those unto whom He was sent and unto those who had come unto. This is something we must needs recognize for when Jesus asked the disciples who men said that He the Son of man that very question struck at the very heart of whether or not men believed Him to be the Messiah. Having the words of the Law and the prophets those who were present in that generation had everything they needed to properly discern the identity of the Messiah and yet they not only missed recognizing Him but they would also despise and reject Him. Oh with this in mind I invite you to consider the following words which are found in the previously mentioned passages contained within the canon of Scripture: “Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: HE hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is not beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath born our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is bro8ught as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living: For the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many: for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong: because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors” (Isaiah 53:1-12). “IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. IN him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God whose name was John. The same came for a witness to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that. Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him” (John 1:1-18). “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. But the righteousness which is of the faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (That is, to bring Christ down from above) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (That is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preached; that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heart? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God? But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world. But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you. But Esaias is very gold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me. But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people” (Romans 10:1-21). I firmly believe it is necessary for us to recognize and pay close attention to the words which are found within these passages of Scripture they call and draw our attention to the incredible truth of the rejection of the Messiah but also of those who would indeed despise Him. You cannot read the words presented in these passages of Scripture and not encounter the incredible truth surrounding the Messiah which was to come and how the Messiah which was to come would indeed be despised and rejected. It would be the prophet Isaiah who would first speak of the coming of the Messiah and how that same Messiah would be despised and rejected of those who were present in the midst of the generation in which He would come and be manifested. The prophet Isaiah would describe a people who would esteem Him stricken and smitten of God and how they would turn their hearts and their backs on Him. What’s more is the apostle John would write concerning those present during that generation how He came unto His own and His own received Him not. Moreover it would be the apostle Paul who would write in the epistle written unto the saints which were at Rome concerning the rejection of the Messiah by the nation and people of Israel. That nation which had both the Law and the prophets guiding and leading them to the Messiah and would indeed find the Messiah coming unto and walking among them would completely and utterly miss His manifestation and appearance among them. The nation and people of Israel had the Law and the prophets which spoke concerning the identify of the Messiah and yet despite having the Law and the prophets the children of Israel would not merely miss the appearing of the Messiah but would also completely and utterly reject the Messiah. It is one thing to say that you missed the Messiah, however, it is something else entirely to actually despise and reject the Messiah. If there is one thing I can’t help but consider when reading the words found in the eighth and ninth chapters of this New Testament gospel written by John Mark it’s that he would indeed describe the coming of the Messiah and how the Messiah would be despised and rejected by those in His generation. When Jesus first began teaching the disciples how He must suffer and be put to death He would directly link and connect it to the chief priests, the scribes and the elders of the people. As Jesus began teaching the disciples of the things He must needs suffer and how He must needs be put to death He would reference it exclusively to the chief priests, to the scribes and to the elders of the nation and people of Israel. Thus religion and the religious leaders present within the nation would be such who would despise and reject the Messiah for they would be such who would seek to put Him to death. It would be religion and the religious leaders operating under the control of the religious spirit that would indeed reject, despise and ultimately deliver the Lord Jesus up to be put to death. It would be the religious leaders who would conspire together among themselves—and not only with and among themselves but also with one of Jesus’ own disciples—how they might put Him to death. The religious leaders were those who would indeed despise and reject the Lord Jesus and who would reject His claims that He was the Son of God and the Messiah and the Christ which was to come. Oh this is something we must needs acknowledge and understand for it calls and draws our attention to the tremendous and incredible truth surrounding the rejection and depising of the Messiah during that generation. As I sit here this day considering the words which John Mark wrote and how Jesus would teach His disciples concerning those things He must needs suffer I can’t help but be reminded of how Jesus would suffer at the hands of those who would and could not accept the truth that He was indeed the Messiah and the Christ. Those who would persecute the Lord Jesus took great issue and great offense with the words He spoke—and not only the words which He spoke but also the works which He would work in the midst of the earth. This is something we must needs acknowledge and understand for both the Jews and the religious leaders would reject the claim(s) Jesus made concerning Himself as coming from the Father and being sent from God unto them. The New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John brings us face to face with the Jews persecuting—and not only persecuting but also seeking to put to death the Lord Jesus because of His words and actions. It is in the fifth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find the Jews initially persecuting Jesus because He had healed a man on the sabbath day, however, within that same passage we find that persecution taking on an entirely different flavor as they would go from merely persecuting Him to seeking to put Him to death. What’s more is that when you come to the sixth chapter of the same gospel you will find the Jews once more murmuring and grumbling against Him because He would speak words which offended them within their hearts and minds. In fact if you read the gospel narrative written by the apostle John you will find within chapters five through I would say eleven and/or twelve the rejection of the Jews toward Jesus of Nazareth as they would not only reject His claims to be the Son of God and having come from God but they would also reject Him as the Messiah and the Christ. Perhaps one of the greatest truths which we find in the eighth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle Matthew and John Mark is that it is possible to believe Jesus to be a great prophet or even a just man and yet not acknowledge the fact that He was the Christ and the Son of the living God. If there is one thing we must needs understand when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture it’s that the Jews were those who thought and believed that Jesus was indeed a prophet and a just man, however, they despised and rejected the claims that He was the Christ and the Son of the living God. This is perhaps the ultimate reason for Jesus’ turning the question unto and upon the disciples concerning who they themselves said and professed Him to be. Jesus would speak unto the disciples and ask them who they said that He the Son of man was after hearing them profess the opinions and views of others. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the wonderful truth surrounding the Jews which were present during those days and how they rejected and despised Jesus as the Messiah, as the Christ and even more so as being the very Son of God. It’s important to note that neither the Law nor the prophets spoke of nor revealed the Messiah and Christ as being the Son of God. It wouldn’t be until Jesus actually come in the form of physical flesh that He would make the claim and profession that He was the Son of God and that He would come from God. It would be during the days and generation of the Lord Jesus Himself that men would learn that the Messiah whom the Law and the prophets had spoken of and foretold would indeed be the Son of the living God and would come from God. In order to help you understand this even more clearly I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the following words which are found in the fifth and sixth chapters of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John. I am absolutely convinced we must needs pay close attention to the words which are found in these passages of Scripture for they bring us face to face with the awesome and powerful truth concerning the rejection of the Messiah by the Jews—this despite the fact they had the Law and the prophets which pointed them to Him. The Jews together with their religious leaders had the Law and the prophets and everything they needed to recognize and understand who the Messiah was when He came and yet they completely and utterly missed Him when He arrived and was manifested among them. Oh it is with this being said I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the following passages which are found in the fifth and sixth chapters of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John: “And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day. But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work. Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God. Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel For as the Father raiseth up the dead, a nd quickeneth them; even so the Son of quickeneth whom he will. For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed al judgment unto the Son: That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting glife, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in himself: so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me. If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true. There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true. Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth. But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved. He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me. And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape. And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent him, ye believe not. Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. I receive not honour from men. But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you. I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive. How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only? Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust. For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?” (John 5:16-47). “The day following, when the people which stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was none other boat there, save that one whereinto his disciples were entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples were gone away alone; (howbeit there came other boats from Tiberias nigh unto the place where they did eat bread, after that the Lord had given thanks) When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus. And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither? Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: For him hath God the Father sealed” (John 6:22-27). “Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? What dost thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven,a nd giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting. Life: and I will raise him up at the last day. The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the Son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent. Me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread, which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this. Man give us his flesh to eat? Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and dinketh my blood, hath eternal life: and I will raise him up at the last day For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and dinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by men. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever. These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum” (John 6:28-59). “Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying: who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, eh said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were believed not, and who should betray him. And he said Therefore said I unto you, that no man came come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father” (John 6:60-65). “From that time many of the disciples went back, and walked no more with him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus answered them, Have I not chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve” (John 6:66-71). What makes these words so incredibly intriguing when you think about it is when you consider the fact that when speaking unto the Jews the Lord Jesus would instruct them to search the Scriptures and would go on to declare unto them that in the scriptures they thought they had eternal life. If there is one thing we must needs acknowledge when considering the words found in this passage of Scripture it’s that Jesus would go on to declare of the scriptures that they were that which testified of Him. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the tremendous truth surrounding the witness which the Jews themselves had—and not only that which the Jews themselves had but also that which their religious leaders had. Both the Jews and their religious leaders, scholars and teachers had the Law and the words which were spoken by Moses which spoke and testified concerning the Lord Jesus Christ. Although the Jews and their religious leaders had the Law and the words of the book of Moses which spoke of and testified concerning the Lord Jesus they would still reject and despise Him. Not only this but the Jews which were present in the earth during those days would completely and utterly reject the Messiah who was actually present among them in their midst. If you continue reading the words which are found in these passages of Scripture you will find the Lord Jesus declaring unto them that they ought not think that He would accuse them before the Father for there was one who would accuse them before and unto the Father. The Lord Jesus would go on to declare that the one who would accuse them would indeed be Moses in whom they trusted. Jesus would go on to declare that if they had believed Moses they would have believed Him for Moses wrote of Him. Moreover Jesus would go on to declare that if they did not believe His writings how would they believe His words. This is something we must needs understand and acknowledge for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely wonderful and powerful reality concerning the witness and testimony of Moses among them during those days. The Lord Jesus would emphatically declare unto those to whom He was speaking that they had the witness of Moses who spoke of and testified concerning Him and yet they chose to reject, despise and ignore Him. Although the Law and the prophets would indeed speak of the Lord Jesus Christ that He was indeed the Messiah and gave them signs and symbols on how to recognize the Messiah they would completely and utterly miss it. The Jews and their religious leaders would not only have the Lord Jesus present among them during those days but they would also persecute Him and seek to put Him to death. This is something we absolutely must needs pay close attention for it brings us face to face with the tremendous truth surrounding the Jews complete and utter rejection of the Lord Jesus based on His words and His works. What I find to absolutely incredible about the words which are found within these passages of Scripture is that they call and draw our attention to the truth surrounding how the Lord Jesus was transfigured atop the mountain where He brought Simon called Peter, James and his brother John. The Lord Jesus would bring Simon Peter, James and his brother John atop the mountain where they would be transfigured before their faces. There atop the mountain the Lord Jesus Christ would indeed be transfigured and would appear in a measure of the glory He had with the Father from the beginning. We must needs pay close attention to this for it calls and draws our attention to the incredible reality surrounding that encounter and who it was that would appear together with the Lord Jesus Christ. It would be there atop the mountain where the Lord Jesus would appear speaking together with Moses and Elijah who represented the Law and the prophets. There atop the mountain the Lord Jesus would appear speaking Moses and Elijah who represented the Law and the prophets. This is something which must needs be carefully considered for within this encounter we find the beloved physician Luke describing how when the Lord Jesus appeared talking and speaking together with Moses and Elijah concerning the kingdom and His decease. In between Jesus beginning to teach and show unto His disciples that He must needs suffer many things at the hands of the chief priests, the scribes and the elders of the people and the Lord Jesus continuing to teach his disciples concerning those things which He must needs suffer we find Him speaking with Moses and Elijah atop the mountain concerning His decease. How absolutely incredible it is to read the words found in this passage of Scripture for within it we find the Lord Jesus speaking with that which would represent the Law and the prophets—that which did indeed speak of Him. The more I read the words which are found in the eighth and ninth chapters of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark the more I am brought face to face with the truth surrounding the Lord Jesus and how He would teach the disciples and those who would walk with and follow Him how He must needs suffer many things at the hands of the chief priests, the scribes and the elders of the people. Not only this but the Jews would themselves reject, despise and ignore the Lord Jesus Christ and would completely and utterly reject Him—so much so that they would not only persecute Him but also that they would seek to destroy and put Him to death. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely wonderful reality of the Lord Jesus teaching and revealing unto His disciples how He must needs suffer many things and ultimately be killed and crucified. The Lord would appear atop the mountain transfigured before Simon called Peter, James and John and it would be there in the midst of that encounter the Lord Jesus would speak even further of His decease and His resurrection. The Lord Jesus would indeed reveal unto His disciples how He must needs suffer and although It would ultimately be sinners who would put to death the Lord Jesus it would be the apostle Peter who would indeed hold the Jews and their leaders ultimately responsible. Even as you consider the words which are found in the third chapter of the New Testament book of Acts you will find Simon Peter speaking unto the Jews a second time concerning the man whom the Lord had healed. The apostle Peter would take this time to once more preach the Lord Jesus Christ—and not only the Lord Jesus Christ but also how they were responsible for the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. Despite the fact that it would be Pontius Pilate who would deliver the Lord Jesus into the hands of the soldiers to put Him to death it would be the Jews themselves who ultimately rejected the Messiah and who chose to deliver Him to up to be put to death. Consider if you will the following words which are found in the third chapter of the New Testament book of Acts: ] “And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s greatly wondering. And when. Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? Or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk? The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him god. But ye denied the Holy One and the Judst, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; and killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorant ye did it, as did also your rulers. But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled. Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me: him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you, And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people. Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days. Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, and in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed. Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities” (Acts 3:11-26). The words which you find in this particular portion of the gospel narrative written by John Mark are now the second account of Jesus teaching His disciples how He must needs suffer many things and be delivered into the hands of men that they might kill Him. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this and how absolutely incredible it truly is for it calls and draws our attention to t he fact that shortly after the Lord Jesus would have an encounter with His disciples in the coasts of Caesarea Philippi where He would ask them who they said—and not only who they said but who they believed—He the Son of man to be. It would be Simon called Peter who would emphatically speak of—perhaps for himself or perhaps on behalf of the group of disciples—how Jesus was the Christ and the Son of the living God. Upon hearing this profession and declaration the Lord Jesus would pronounce blessing upon Simon and would emphatically declare unto Him that flesh and blood had not revealed this truth unto his heart and spirit but rather His Father which was in heaven. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the incredible truth that revelation concerning the eternal and only begotten Son comes directly from the Father which is in heaven. Just as no man hath seen the Father save the Son who was with the Father in the beginning and who is seated at the right hand of the Father so also can no man know and proclaim Jesus to be the Christ and the Son of the living God apart from revelation from the Father. Oh how absolutely incredible this truly is when you take the time to think about it for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely wonderful reality of the Lord Jesus Christ and who He truly was and who He still is to this day. The more you read the words found in this passage of Scripture the more you will be brought face to face with the fact that in addition to speaking of the revelation of the Father the Lord Jesus would declare unto Simon that it would be upon this rock He would build His church and the gates of hell would not prevail against it. It is absolutely necessary we understand this concept of the gates of hell not prevailing against the church and Jesus building His church for while at the very heart of the building of the church is the revelation that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of the living God. What’s more is that in addition to this there is the ultimate foundation centered upon the suffering, the death, the burial and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it brings us face to face with the incredible truth surrounding the church being built upon the revelation of who Jesus truly is as well as the purpose for which He came and entered into the earth. This is something we have a great need to pay close attention to for the church is not only built but also protected based on the revelation of Jesus being the Christ and the Son of the living God. The church is built and protected based on the suffering, the death, the burial and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ--and not only this but His ascension unto the right hand of the Father which is in heaven. As I bring this writing to a close I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the truly wonderful reality of what is found within this passage of Scripture for if there is one thing we must needs recognize it’s that the suffering, the death and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ ought not only to serve as an invitation to pursue discipleship through the door of self-denial, taking up our cross and following Him but also through humility. It would be in this passage of Scripture we encounter Jesus and the disciples coming unto Capernaum and when they had entered into the house Jesus asked the disciples what the disciples disputed among themselves by the way. When hearing the question which was asked by the Lord Jesus the disciples held their peace for they all knew that when they were walking beside the way they argued, contended and disputed among themselves which of them was the greatest. It would be the Lord Jesus who would perceive and understand what it was they disputed among themselves and would declare unto them that if any man would desire to be first the same ought to be last of all—and not only last of all but servant of all. This is something we must needs recognize. And understand for it calls and invites us into a place of discipleship where we recognize that we haven’t been called to be great, nor have we been called to be the greatest, nor have we been called to be greater than anyone else in the kingdom of God. In all reality these are three sides of the same danger presented against and facing the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ for there has always been and there will always be the temptation to be great—and not only to be great but to be greater than others. If we aren’t careful we will not only seek to be greater than others but will also pursue and seek after becoming the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Oh that we would recognize and understand that we as the disciples of Christ have indeed been called to be those who deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Him but also those who are willing to abase and humble themselves that they might not only be last but might also be servant of all.

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