Sunday, 27 January 2019

I Reading: Acts 13:14.43-52: We must turn to the pagans.
II Reading: Apocalypse 7:9.14-17: The Lamb will be their shepherd and will lead them to springs of living water.
Gospel: John 10:27-30: I give eternal life to the sheep that belong to me.
The Great Shepherd’s Claims, 10:22-42
Jesus Christ is the great shepherd-great because of who He is. Note the phenomenal claims He made. Jesus Christ claimed to be “the Good Shepherd.” He is not a bad or a false shepherd.
1. Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Feast of Dedication (v.22-24)
a. It was a winter
b. He was walking in Solomon’s colonnade
c. The religionists approached and questioned Him
2. Claim 1: He is the Messiah (v.25-29)
a. Religionists did not believe
  1) His clear claim
  2) His works are proof
  3) Reason: The religionists were not of His sheep
b. His sheep believe
  1) Are receptive
  2) Are known
  3) Do follow v.27
  4) Are given life
  5) Are kept from perishing
  6) Are secure
  7) Are assured a double security in God Himself
3. Claims 2: He is one God, that is, He is God Himself (v.30-33)
a. The religionists reacted
b. Jesus questioned their reaction
c. The religionists admitted that His works were good
d. The religionists understood His claim, but they rejected Him
4. Claim 3: He is the Son of God (v.34-36)
a. Jesus showed man’s inconsistency
b. Jesus’ claim
  1) The Father sacrificed Him, set Him apart
  2) The Father sent Him
  3) He is the Son of God
5. Claim 4: God is in Him and He is in God-absolutely (v.37-39).
a. His works prove
b. He was still rejected
6. Conclusion: Jesus retired (v.40-42)
a. Jesus went to the area of John the Baptist
b. John’s crowds began to follow Jesus
c. Many believed in Jesus
Thought: Who is Jesus for us today? How many of us/missionaries work and die knowingly, willingly and voluntarily for the people of God as a good shepherd in our Church?

I Reading: Acts 9:31-42: The churches built themselves up and were filled with the consolation of the Holy Spirit.
Gospel: John 6:60-69: Who shall we go to? You have the message of eternal life.
People are often offended by Christ. Four things in particular offend them.
1.    Jesus’ message was to the synagogue crowd in Capernaum (v.59-60)
a.    Many disciples were present
b.    They had difficulty accepting His message
2.    There is the idea of eating Jesus’ flesh and drinking His blood (v.61)
3.    There is the ascension and exaltation of Christ (v.62)
4.    There is the teaching that the Spirit quickens, gives life and the flesh counts for nothing (v.63-64)
5.    There is the fact that God saves man, man does not save himself (v.65)
6.    The conclusion: there were three responses (v.66-71)
a.    The disciples who turned back
b.    The disciple who believed Jesus was the Christ
c.     The disciple who believed Christ
Thought: A person is saved unless he/she has come to Jesus Christ. A person is lost unless he/she comes to Him.

I Reading: Acts 9:1-20: This man is my chosen instrument to bring my name before pagans.
Gospel: John 6:52-59: My flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.
The Results of Partaking of the Bread of Life, Jn 6:52-58
A person must receive and partake of the Bread of Life. When he/she does, he/she receives five wonderful things.
1.    The religionists were perplexed over Jesus’ words (v.52-53)
a.    They questioned partaking of His flesh
b.    Jesus proclaimed a much more shocking thing: unless one partakes of Him, he/she does not have life
2.    Result 1: eternal life-conquering death and being resurrected (v.54)
3.    Result 2: true not false satisfaction (v.55)
4.    Result 3: supernatural companionship and fellowship (v.56)
5.    Result 4: a life that is full of purpose and meaning (v.57)
6.    Result 5: incorruptible food received with in the heart-energizing life forever (v.58)
Thought: Unless a person receives (eats and drinks) Christ, he/she has no life within him. He/she is a dead person spiritually and eternally. He/she is walking around a dead person. (Eph 2:1; 5:14; Col 2:13, 1Tim 5:6; Rev3:1)

I Reading: Acts 8:26-40: If you believe with all your heart, you will be baptised.
Gospel: John 6:44-51: I am the living bread which has come down from heaven.
The Way a Person Partakes of the Bread of Life, 6:41-51
How one partakes of the Bread of Life, that is, how one come s to know Jesus personally, is the focus of this passage.
1.    The religionists rebelled against the claims of Jesus (v.41-43)
a.    They questioned Jesus’ origin
b.    They misunderstood the incarnation
c.     Jesus appealed: stop grumbling
2.    A person must be drown by God (v.44-46)
a.    The result: he will be raised up at the last day
b.    He must be taught by God (God’s part)
c.     He must hear and learn trough Christ (man’s part)
1)    Because no man has seen God
2)    Because Christ is from God and has seen God
3.    A person must believe on Christ (v.47-51)
a.    Believe He is the Bread of Life
b.    Believe He is “out of” heaven-has come to deliver man form death
c.     Believe He is the living bread-the One who gives life to man forever
d.    Believe He gives His flesh for the life of the world.
Thought: “My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world” says two things.
1)    Jesus Christ came in the flesh (1 Tim 3:16; 1Jn 4:2-3).
2)    Jesus Christ gave His flesh (life) for the life of the world (Heb 2:14-15; Rom 8:3; 1Pet 2:24; 3:18).

I Reading: Acts 8:1-8: They went from place to place.
Gospel: John 6:35-40: It is my Father’s will that whoever sees the Son shall have eternal life.
The Assurance of the Believer, Jn 6:37-40
The believer has great assurance and security.
1.    Assurance 1: God’s predestination (v.37)
2.    Assurance 2: Jesus’ Word (v.37)
3.    Assurance 3: Jesus’ purpose to do God’s will (v.38)
4.    Assurance 4: God’s will for those whom He gives to Christ (v.39)
a.    That Jesus should not lose a single one
b.    That Jesus should resurrect every one
5.    Assurance 5: God’s will for the believers (v.40)
a.    Is eternal life
b.    Result: Jesus “will raise him up”
Thought: The believer is assured of eternal life (Jn 3:16), victory over death (1Cor 15:52-57) and the resurrection (Jn 5:25-29; 11:25).

I Reading: Acts 7:51-8:1: Lord Jesus receive my spirit.
Gospel: John 6:30-35: It was not Moses who gave you bread from heaven, it is my Father who gives you the bread from heaven, the true bread.
The Bread of Life: The Source of Spiritual Satisfaction
Jesus is the source of spiritual satisfaction, of man’s spiritual nourishment. He is the only bread that can feed man’s great hunger, the hunger that gnaws and gnaws within his inner being. There is no other source upon which man can feed and be nourished.
1.    The people demanded proof (v.30-31)
a.    Jesus’ great claim
b.    The specific proof demanded
2.    Christ is the true Bread (v.32)
a.    Man cannot provide true bread: satisfaction
b.    God alone provides true bread: true satisfaction
3.    Christ is the Bread of God (v.33)
a.    He came from heaven
b.    He gives life
4.    Christ is the Bread of Life (v.34-35)
a.    The request for the Bread of God
b.    The phenomenal claim
c.     If man comes to Jesus, he will never hunger
d.    If man believes, he will never thirst
5.    Christ was seen but rejected (v.36)
Thought: Christ (The Word of God) gives life to the believer by doing the five things as bread.
1)    Bread gives life by...nourishing and sustaining
2)    Satisfying
3)    Energizing
4)    Creating desire (the need) for more
5)    Being partaken on a regular basis
Man never has enough. He craves and craves, never being fully satisfied.

I Reading: Acts 6:8-15: They could not get the better of Stephen because of his wisdom, and because it was the Spirit that prompted what he said.
Gospel: John 6: 22-29: Do not work for food that cannot last, but work for food that endures to eternal life.
The Answer to Man’s Great Hunger
Man/woman has a gnawing hunger within for both the physical and the spiritual. He/she hungers for both food and material things and for God and spiritual things, things such as love and joy and peace. Therefore, most of Man’s/woman’s time and energy are spent in seeking to satisfy his/her hunger. This passage deals with the answer to man’s/woman’s hunger.
1.    Answer 1: Know that man has great hunger, a great need (v.22-25)
a.    The people were miraculously fed. V.1-15
b.    The people acknowledge their need
c.     The people noted Jesus’ absence
d.    The people sought Jesus
e.     The people questioned Jesus’ absence
2.    Answer 2: Acknowledge that man’s motive is corrupt (v.26-27)
a.    Sought the Messiah for what they could get out of Him
b.    Sought food that spoiled-misplaced labor
3.    Answer 3: Work for food that endures-that gives eternal life (v.27)
a.    Source: Son of Man
b.    God guaranteed
4.    Answer 4: Do the work of God-believe (v.28-29)
Thought: people should search diligently to find Christ until the Lord is found. (Lk 11:9-10; Heb 11:6; Is 55:6)

Monday, 21 January 2019

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time-C
I Reading: Nehemiah 8:2-6.8-10: Ezra read from the law of God and the people understood what was read.
II Reading: 1Corinthians 12:12-30: You together are Christ’s body; but each of you is a different part of it.
Gospel: Luke 1:1-4,4:14-21: Text is being fulfilled today.
Jesus Announces His Mission: A Graphic Picture of Rejection, 4:16-30
The kingly power of God is to be exercised in pardoning, loving, healing and liberation from sin, death and all corruptions. Jesus has not merely read the Scriptures but as King’s messenger proclaimed the Good News to the poor, captives, blind, oppressed and announced the year of the Lord as true freedom. Jesus Christ claimed to be the Messiah, and His claim was rejected by the people of His day. His claim is still rejected by people today. A graphic picture of rejection is painted in the present passage.
1. A dramatic scene (v.16)
a. Jesus visited His home town
b. Jesus entered the Synagogue-His custom on the Sabbath
2. Scene 1: Jesus’ dramatic reading from the prophet Isaiah-concerned the Messiah (v.17-19)
a. The Messiah was to be anointed by the Spirit
b. The Messiah was to preach the gospel (Good News)
c. The Messiah was to minister
d. The Messiah was to preach the age of salvation
3. Scene 2: Jesus’ phenomenal claim (v.20-21)
a. The rapt attention of the people
b. The claim of Jesus to be the Messiah
4. Scene 3: The people’s declining response (v.22-23)
a. First, They were impressed
b. Second, They questioned
c. Third, They demanded proof-insisted He heal (prove)Himself, that is, work miracles-like a devil or Satan asking to prove
5. Scene 4: The people’s painful rejection (v.24-27)
a. Illus. 1: Only one needy widow had her needs met in Elijah’s day-because only one widow accepted Elijah
b. Illus. 2: Only one needy leper was cleansed in Elisha’s day-because only one leper accepted Elisha
6. Scene 5: The people’s true spirit (v.28-30)
a. An insane wrath: A close mindedness
b. An insane insult: To silence Jesus
c. The insane behaviour of the people failed
Thought: When God calls, He appoints; He equips the messenger with His Spirit. The Holy Spirit goes with the messenger wherever God sends him.

Saturday: 2nd Week in Ordinary Time-C
I Reading: 2 Samuel 1:1-4, 11- How did the heroes fall in the thick of the battle.
Gospel: Mark 3:20-21: His relative said he was out of his mind.
Jesus’ Impact upon Friends: Calling Jesus Mad and Insane
The Authorized Version (KJV) is probably correct in using “friends” in verse 21 of “kinsmen” or family. Jesus’ impact upon his family is discussed in Mark 3:31.
1.    The crowd: they were so zealous that Jesus was unable to eat (v.20)
2.    The friends or family: they acted the very opposite (v.21)
a.    Heard of his behaviour
b.    Thought him insane
c.     Sought custody
Thought: Zeal and enthusiasm for Christ are so desperately lacking. People should be flocking to him by the multitudes, but they are not. Why?
·       Do they love the world and the things of the world too much (1Jn 2:15-16)?
·       Do they love the body and its feelings too much?
·       Do they love pride, fame, power, money, wealth too much?
·       Do they just not know? Have they not heard? (Rom 10:14-15)
·       Is the witness and life of believers too weak? (Eph 4:17-24)
Thought: Jesus Christ ministered despite enormous inconvenience and disruption. He denied himself his own need in order to help others. The call of the hour is: “Believe Jesus. Trust Him. He was not insane. He is truly the Son of the living God.”
Friends or family can be wrong, no matter how much they esteem and love us. What they think and how they treat us can often be wrong: the friends or family of Jesus were wrong. In this case we must go against friends or family some time for the right cause or justice. We must vigorously surrender to God and to His Will regardless of what our friends or family may think. Being strong and standing firm in God’s Call and Will are desperately needed always.
What a lesson for us today!