John 4 & 5
Fresh eyes will be tough on this one… I think that I may have read John 4 more than any other chapter in the entire Bible. But here we go!! There is something about this chapter that has captivated me…continually. The hope, the second chance, the Jesus style approach to loving people through truth always captures me.
As you read what are the things that stand out about this part of scripture? Not what you’ve heard from myself or any other pastor, but ask the Spirit to reveal things to you as you read. I know for me I am always captured by the reality that Jesus knew about this woman’s life without ever meeting her. Does that strike anyone other than me as powerful? He was so in touch with the Spirit that he was instantly aware of what was taking place in this woman’s life. There’s something here for each of us to digest, He was led by the Spirit, and the Spirit was talking to Him!!! I know that to some of you that is a crazy idea. Some of us have known Jesus for a long time and cant actually decide if we have ever heard God, Jesus, or the Spirit ever speak to us. I can tell you this, He intends to and probably is right now.
I have mentioned this more times than I can remember, but I will ask the question again ‘How loud is your life?’ How much static noise is in the background on a regular basis? Sometimes when I am home alone I will turn on the TV and for some reason leave it on while I work around the house or do any number of things. I can’t help but think that spiritually our lives are like this more often than not…perpetual noise invading our space. Living where we do, in the culture that surrounds us we are more prone to perpetual spatial invading than any other time in history…be it Facebook, Twitter, text, email or all of those things on our cell phones, it never quits. Simply stated, we have to make time to be alone and quiet with the King and allow the Spirit to lead and guide our days and ultimately our lives.
The last part of chapter 4 contains a powerful statement from Jesus to a royal official, my guess he was a religious leader. Jesus directs this at him, “Unless you people see sign and wonders, you simply will not believe.” Some how I think that we have become the opposite, we are very comfortable living and believing without signs and wonders, to such an end that we don’t expect them to happen…something tells me Jesus still longs to heal the sick and bring sight to the blind. Just a thought.
Chapter 5 starts out with Jesus healing a crippled man. Now there is something very striking about this first part from a historical perspective that you should catch about the pool…make sure you read and reread until you capture Gods heart to heal, even before Jesus heals the crippled man. Enjoy!
Now the second half of this chapter is riveting as Jesus tells over and over of His ability to save. In His words ‘bring life.’ Like you I am reading this un aided, but I have to think that every time we see life in this context it has to be seen as Zoe life…not just Bios life. If you have been around WOL very long you are familiar with the two. But if you haven’t here’s what it looks like. In the Greek there are two words for life, Zoe and Bios. Here is the difference; Zoe is the word that represents the vitality of the human soul. It literally infers the eternal part of our creation. There is much debate about how humanity is comprised, is the soul, separate, is there a mind, body, and soul… the holistic, dualistic or tri part division of the soul. And here isn’t the time or the place to discuss that, but to only say that Zoe is the word that from Jesus infers the eternal part of our beings. While Bios on the other hand is the word the represents the body, heartbeat, brain wave, type life, the stuff that dies for all of us…not the eternal.
As you read think consider the distinction from above…I know I broke my rule of reading with fresh eyes by sharing the Bios/Zoe distinction, but praying through it I felt it was important to share.
I will leave you with this… “30I can do nothing on My own initiative As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.”
Jesus perspective was that He could do nothing outside the will of the Father. My thought, if we are really going to trade Third Party Passion’ for ‘First Person Experience’ it cant be done without knowing the Father and being under the influence of the Spirit.