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Daily Update from Pastor David March 31, 2020

Tuesday, March 31

Update & Prayer Notes

Luke 10:45-48; John 12:20-50

One might well mark the birth of the Protestant Reformation from this day in 1515. Back then, all of Christendom held one of two loyalties—the Orthodox Church, centered in Constantinople, Turkey, or the Catholic Church of Rome. But on this day, 505 years ago, Pope Leo X made a decision that set about a chain of events leading to a young monk taking a stand which would split the Roman Church.

Needing money to rebuild St. Peter’s basilica, Pope Leo X announces a sale of indulgences to run for eight years beginning this day. Indulgences involved paying money to reduce the amount of punishment one has to undergo for the forgiveness of sins. This will so anger the friar Martin Luther, that two years later he will post his Ninety-Five Theses in response. The Reformation will result.

John lets us know that the kingdom message of Jesus is about to move in a different direction. A cataclysmic change is underfoot.

Matthew, Mark and Luke are much alike in their record of the last week of Jesus’ life. The difference is in the details they provide. And we call these three records of Jesus’ life the Synoptic Gospels, meaning they share a similar point of view. As we noticed yesterday, the clearing of the temple and the judgment on the fig tree both emphasize that Israel is spiritually barren. God is not in the temple. God’s people are unfruitful.

John tells us God is about to include Gentiles with the message of salvation in Jesus.

First, some Greek/Gentile seekers of truth “want to see Jesus” (vs.21). And in their seeking, they gain access.

As Jesus received these Gentile seekers of truth he talks about his glorification. This glory will be revealed by …

  1. God’s affirmation that this is His Son.

28Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” 29The crowd standing there heard it and said it was thunder. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.”                                                                                                  —John 12:28-29

We’re more familiar with the voice from heaven at his baptism and transfiguration. But John tells us of another moment when the Father affirms the Son.

  1. Death by crucifixion brings glory.

23Jesus replied to them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24Truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains by itself. But if it dies, it produces much fruit. … 27Now my soul is troubled. What should I say—Father, save me from this hour? But that is why I came to this hour.                                                                                                               —John 12:23-27

Jesus came to die, and through his death God would be glorified as access to the Father would be the result of salvation through the cross.

  1. The message is for everyone.

32“As for me, if I am lifted up from the earth I will draw all people to myself.”                                                 —John 12:32

John is the gospel for “whosoever”! His salvation draws all people. And John concludes by quoting Isaiah where the hearts and eyes of the people of Israel are blinded but goes out to the whole world.

47“If anyone hears my words and doesn’t keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.              —John 12:47

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,

World without end.

Hallelujah! Amen.

 

- Pastor David Booker