Follow this link to comment on the sermon, or to read what others have said.  View a printer-friendly copy of this outline in Adobe Reader.

Here is a link to the sermon audio in the mp3 file format.  Here is a link to the sermon audio in the wma file format.  Here is a link to the sermon audio at our iTunes podcast.

Jesus Gave His Word

Introduction:  

      ďIs it in the red? If not, then it is not important.Ē That is the approach many take to Bible study today. Of course, their point is, if it is Jesusí word then it is important, the rest was just opinion and conjecture from Jesusí earliest followers. The Bible, on the other hand, presents a different picture of Jesusí word. Looking to the Bible, we learn four facts about Jesusí word that should affect our approach to the Bible.

Discussion:

I.         Jesusí word is from God (John 14:24).

A.      While all aspects of the trinity and the relationship of the Father, Son and Spirit may elude our finite minds, one thing we understand for sure is that in the eternal plan, the Son has subjected Himself to the will of the Father. While on the earth, Jesus, God the Son, made it clear that what He said and taught came directly from God. He did not speak or act on his own initiative, but rather in submission to the Fatherís will (John 12:48).

B.     From the very outset, we learn the whole concept of asking, ďIs it in red?Ē misses the point. That question makes it sound as if all that is important is whether or not Jesus verbally said something. The issue about whether or not something is a part of Jesusí word is whether or not it is from God. With this point in mind we recognize Jesusí words were not His own, but the Fatherís.

C.     This word of Jesus, we find, is very powerful. In fact, the scripture presents two very important aspects of the power and authority of Jesusí word.

II.       Jesusí word will impart life to believers (John 6:63).

A.      In John 6, Jesus offended a great number of those who had followed Him by calling Himself the bread of life and claiming those who would eat His flesh and drink His blood would have life. The people misunderstood and viewed this as some kind of sick cannibalistic perversity. They did not understand the figurative and spiritual nature of Jesusí message.

B.     Jesus taught clearly how one would eat His flesh and drink His blood in John 6:63. He pointed out that what imparted life to people was not a literal consumption of Jesusí body and blood. Rather, it is the consumption of and obedience to His word. Jesusí word is life.

C.     However, take note in John 6:64 Jesus demonstrates His word does not give life to those who do not believe. Only those who believe and submit to Jesusí word will receive the life Jesus has to offer. Regrettably, in this context, the majority of those who were following Him abandoned Him. Amazingly, this refers to the multitudes He fed with five loaves and two fish earlier in the chapter. However, the twelve, when given the opportunity to leave in John 6:67-68 responded, ďTo whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.Ē In other words, if we choose not to believe the word of Jesus, we have no place else to turn. Only Jesus has the words of life. Our only hope is to believe them.

III.      Jesusí word will judge rejecters (John 12:48).

A.      On the other end of the spectrum is what will happen to those who reject the word of Jesus. That very word which they have rejected will judge them in the last day.  In Matthew 25:45-46, Jesus reveals the distinction between those given life through belief in His word and those who are judged by His word. Those who are judged will suffer eternal punishment.

B.     Note especially that the scripture does not provide for anywhere in between. One is either a believer in Jesusí word or he is a rejecter. One either receives everlasting life or everlasting punishment. There is no temporary punishment and then eternal life for those who believe parts and reject parts. It is all or nothing.

C.     The parable of the two builders in Matthew 7:24-27 pictures both cases. The believer hears and obeys. The rejecter may hear and may even partially obey, but in some area decides not to listen to Jesusí word. The believerís house maintains stability in this life and the next. The rejecter, while appearing stable for a time, will lose his house; if not here, in eternity.

D.     Matthew 12:30 points out there is no middle ground. One either accepts Jesusí word totally and gathers with Him or he is against Jesus.

E.     Now that we understand the importance of Jesusí word in our eternal destiny, it is important to understand what Jesusí word is.

IV.    Jesus word was spoken through the apostles (II Peter 3:2; I Corinthians 14:37).

A.      In John 16:13-15, Jesus clearly demonstrates His word is not limited to just what He said while in the flesh. After He ascended to the Father, He sent the Comforter, the Holy Spirit to guide the apostles into all truth. But then Jesus pointed out that what the Spirit would say came from Jesus who has already told us His words come from the Father. We learn then, that not only the words in red belong to Jesus. All words inspired by the Holy Spirit are the words of Jesus.

B.     II Peter 1:20-21 demonstrates clearly which words belong to Jesus. All scripture came as a revelation from the Holy Spirit, therefore all scripture is the word of Jesus. Later in this same letter, Peter points out the words of the New Testament apostles and prophets were not their own but were the commandment of the Lord Jesus (II Peter 3:2). Paul, in I Corinthians 14:37, teaches what he wrote is the Lordís command. In Galatians 1:11-12, Paul wants everyone to know the gospel he preached was directly from Jesus.

C.     Ephesians 3:3-5 demonstrates what the Spirit revealed to these apostles and prophets was written down. By referring to that, the reader could understand the Gospel. Interestingly, while some would have us believe the people in the first century only referred to the Old Testament as scripture, II Peter 3:15-16 demonstrates in the first century at the very least, Paulís writings were considered scripture. Of course, what we learn from II Peter 3:2 and Ephesians 3:3-5 is the early Christians understood the writings of the apostles and prophets of the New Testament were scripture. It wasnít hundreds of years later that people recognized what was scripture and what was not.

D.     This teaches us the entirety of scripture is important to our Christian walk. Whether the scripture is in red or not, it is the word of Jesus. In the end, our submission to that word or lack thereof will determine our eternal destiny. If you have ever been wont to say what Paul or Peter wrote is not as important as what Jesus said, remember this lesson. It is all the word of Jesus and must all be believed and obeyed.

Conclusion:

      Jesus has given us His word. It is up to us to follow it, all of it. Remember, there is no in between. We either accept all of His word, or we have rejected Jesus. As we close consider the word of Jesus in Mark 16:16 and Acts 2:38. Have you submitted to Christ in belief, repentance and baptism? If not, then you are still a rejecter of Jesus. Why not change that now?

 


Glory to God in the church by Christ Jesus
Franklin Church of Christ