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John 5:24-30

24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.

25 “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.

30 “I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is just, because I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me.

17 comments on “John 5:24-30

  1. The first couple of times that I read these verses, I read v30 in the first person, “I can do nothing on my own.” Then I remembered whom is speaking. It is not one of the apostles or prophets, but Jesus. Christ did not act independently but was in perfect communion with his Father.

    Christ is equal with God, as John states in v18, but He was a stumbling block to Jews because they did not understand His humble service or His exhalted status. He was foolishness to Gentiles because He went to the cross voluntarily. His obedience to the Father and His love for the sheep moved Him to lay down His life.

    Christ made the ultimate sacrifice. I am called, rather I am commanded, to love the Lord my God and to love my neighbor as myself. I cannot do this on my own, but I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

  2. 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.

    Good and evil. That which is pleasing to God, and that which is detestable to God. Luther speaks about both actions in his “morning prayer”:

    I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, your dear Son, that you have kept me this night from all harm and danger; and I pray that you would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings in life may please you. For into your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.

    Luther had his priorities in order when he suggested that when you get up, repeat the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer and this little prayer. I stand in awe at his discipline.

  3. Passed from death to life – these are words that we must cling to throughout our time on earth. God does not just bring us from death to life but so many things in our lives he brings through that same transformation.

    Reading Deep & Wide with our mission board and the book opens up with a failure of the senior pastor of a large church which results in a church split – and God brings out of that what is now one of the largest congregations in the nation. Death to life. God’s work.

    • God’s work indeed, by which we are a new creation. As Romans 6:11 says, we are dead to sin and alive in Christ: “So you must also consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

      Because Christ has united Himself to us, we do not use forgiveness as an excuse to sin; instead, we joyfully live in service to Him.

      His Love, Our Response!

  4. whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life.

    the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.

    14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:14-15

    May the Lord grant me beautiful feet. Amen.

  5. The Saturday morning Men’s Bible study is looking at the “Hall of Faith” in Hebrews chapter 11. Verse 1 says, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”

    There is only one way of salvation and only one gospel message. Throughout history people have tried to pervert the gospel by adding human works to it, requiring certain things to be done to “earn” salvation. But the Bible’s clear message is that the way of salvation has always been through faith. In the Old Testament, it was faith in the promise that God would send a Savior someday. Those who lived in the time of the Old Testament looked forward to the Messiah and believed God’s promise of the coming Servant of the Lord (Isaiah 53). Those who exercised such faith were saved. Today we look back on the life, death and resurrection of the Savior and are saved by faith in Jesus Christ’s atonement for our sins (Romans 10:9-10).

    Sola Scriptura Sola Fida Sola Gratia Solo Christo Soli Deo Gloria

    The Five solae are five Latin phrases that emerged during the Protestant Reformation and summarize the Reformers’ basic theological beliefs in contradiction to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church of the day. The Latin word sola means “alone” or “only” in English. The five solae articulated five fundamental beliefs of the Protestant Reformation, pillars which the Reformers believed to be essentials of the Christian life and practice. All five implicitly rejected or countered the teachings of the then-dominant Catholic Church, which the Reformers claimed had usurped divine attributes or qualities for the Church and its hierarchy, especially its head, the Pope.

    Death to life, sola scriptura (“by Scripture alone”), sola fide (“by faith alone”), sola gratia (“by grace alone”), solo Christo (“through Christ alone”) and solii Deo gloria (“glory to God alone”).

  6. Joel is asking our youth to consider tough questions. The theme for CREW last night was “How can a loving God send people to Hell?”

    If God arbitrarily decided the rules about who goes to heaven or hell, we would have good cause to call His fairness into question. But hell is a reality because we have an incompatibility problem. God’s holiness cannot coexist with man’s wickedness. As Pastor Singer reminded us yesterday in his sermon, “the wages of Sin is death”.

    The only solution to this dilemma is for the Lord to change us, which is the very reason Christ came and died—to pave the way for change in our very nature. Those who accept Jesus’ death as the payment for their sin are made holy (2 Cor. 5:21). That is why we who believe in the Savior are referred to as saints, and the Holy Spirit is able to dwell in us. At salvation, there is a fundamental change in our nature, and we become one with Jesus Christ.

    Those who reject the gift of salvation go to hell because their natures are incompatible with heaven. The quantity or severity of their sins doesn’t send them there. The problem is that they have not been cleansed of sin, so they remain unholy.

    In his fantasy “The Great Divorce”, C. S. Lewis describes a busload of people from Hell who come to the outskirts of heaven. There they are urged to leave behind the sins that have trapped them in Hell – but they refuse. Lewis’s descriptions of these people are striking because we recognize in them the self-delusion and self-description that are “writ small ” in our own addictions:

    “Hell begins with a grumbling mood, always complaining, always blaming others… but you are still distinct from it. You may even criticize it in yourself and wish you could stop it. But there may come a day when you can no longer. Then there will be no you left to criticize the mood or even enjoy it, but just the grumble itself, going on forever like a machine. It is not a question of God “sending us” to Hell. In each of us there is something growing which will BE Hell unless it is nipped in the bud.”

    Jesus nipped Hell in the bud for us. Death to life!

  7. Pastor Singer’s sermon made the business case for why we need a Savior, and provided a rationale explanation of how salvation plays out. I was blessed by the message twice on Sunday, and I get to hear it again on Wednesday night. whoo-whoo!

  8. Death to Life.

    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
    Romans 6:23.

    After speaking of the wages of sin… Paul does not say the wages of good deeds, “but the gift of God;” to show, that it is not of ourselves that we are freed, or a payment for our labors, but by grace alone.

    Sola Scriptura – Sola Fida – Sola Gratia – Solo Christo – Soli Deo Gloria

  9. The focus on death to life this week led me to a website called Death2Life Revolution.
    D2L is a website designed for teens, its purpose is to help them get follow up and be discipled. http://www.d2lrevolution.net

    “The Death 2 Life Revolution is called to proclaim the truth of Jesus Christ and to train, disciple and empower a generation to die to self and live a radical life that will create a worldwide revolution for Jesus Christ.”

    It is filled with web videos from Pro-skaters, Pro-bikers, Athletes, and Musicians who explain what it means to truly be a Christian and what the gospel really is. Teens can learn what it means to be a follower of Christ from the skaters bikers and other athletes they look up to. It is also a place where teens can ask questions and read blogs and find out anything they need to know about Christ.

    Testimonies are grouped by the following 3 areas of discipleship:

    1. Defeat Death
    Do you know how to defeat death? Do you want true life? We’re talking about life that can’t be taken away, everlasting life that can only come from Jesus Christ. Let extreme skateboarding and BMX biking legends – Brian Sumner, Vic Murphy and more walk you through the Gospel and what it means to really know Jesus.

    2. Fuel the Fire
    What’s Next in this journey? Have you ever really asked – Who is Jesus? We realize that when you hear the name Jesus Christ you may think of phrases like: religion, church, judgmental Christians, dead guy on a cross or even the general thought of boredom! The pro athletes and celebrities below have all thought the same things in their life. Though, something changed in their lives and now the name of Jesus means truth, love, life and real hope.

    3. Life Blood
    How do you actually follow Jesus? What does a person look like if they are actually following Jesus? Watch these teachings from pro skateboarders, celebrities and more to learn what the Bible says about following Jesus. Francis Chan, Mike Steinkamp, Roxanne Grace and more explain what God says about fearing Him, who is the Holy Spirit and what the Bible says about suicide.

    Ministries like this are evidence that we serve a radical God!

  10. Dead to sin. When I took my first breath, I was already dead to sin. I was physically alive, but spiritually dead. I was born in God’s image, but original sin separated me from God.

    As Pastor Singer said in his sermon, Paul chose these words very carefully. He did not say that I would struggle in my sin. He did not say that I would wallow in darkness at times because of my sin. I was condemned by sin and would be consumed by sin; it is only by grace through faith that I have the gift of eternal life.

    Dead to sin… alive in Christ. From Luther’s morning prayer, “I pray that You would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings and life may please You. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me.” Amen.

  11. As I review the Bible Study Newsletter that Chris Hogan sent out in advance of the Men’s Bible Study this morning on Hebrews Chapter 11, I marvel at the Old Testament men and women who triumphed by faith. People who believed God and pursued His promises even though many didn’t see them come to pass in their lifetime.

    New Testament Christians have the benefit of witnessing the Messiah, through scripture, and pursuing the promise of eternal life that God offers to all through Christ.

    Death to life!

  12. Death to life…

    I am justified by God’s grace, through the atoning sacrifice of Christ; Justification is what God did for me and frees me from the guilt of sin.

    I am sanctified by God’s grace, through ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in my life; Sanctification is what God does in me and frees me from the power of sin.

    Death to life.

  13. Death to life…

    Christ proclaimed victory on the cross when he took his last breath and said, “It is finished.” One commentary that I read attributes these words as follows:

    Found only in the Gospel of John, the Greek word translated “it is finished” is tetelestai, an accounting term that means “paid in full.” When Jesus uttered those words, He was declaring the debt owed to His Father was wiped away completely and forever. Not that Jesus wiped away any debt that He owed to the Father; rather, Jesus eliminated the debt owed by mankind—the debt of sin.

    Although the redemption of mankind is the most important finished task, many other things were finished at the cross. The sufferings Jesus endured while on the earth, and especially in His last hours, were at last over. God’s will for Jesus was accomplished in His perfect obedience to the Father (John 5:30; 6:38). Most importantly, the power of sin and Satan were finished. No longer would mankind have to suffer the “flaming arrows of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16). By raising the “shield of faith” in the One who completed the work of redemption and salvation, we can, by faith, live as new creations in Christ. Jesus’ finished work on the cross was the beginning of new life for all who were once “dead in trespasses and sins” but who are now made “alive with Christ” (Ephesians 2:1, 5).

    Death to life, by grace through faith in Christ!

  14. … whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life.

    If I really want to hear what the Lord is saying to the church today, all I have to do is open up the word of God and begin reading. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He hasn’t changed his mind regarding the salvation of souls. It’s the same message that Jesus preached two thousand years ago. It’s the same message the apostle Paul preached as he traveled throughout the provinces of Asia Minor, Rome and Greece. It’s the same cry of the Spirit going forth from continent to continent. The Lord is looking for those who are willing to take up his cross and follow him. He’s looking for laborers who are willing to work in the fields so that the harvest can be brought in.

    What’s holding me back today? Is it fear? Is it pride? Is it selfishness? I must be delivered from whatever it is that’s holding me back from doing the will of God. It’s time to lay all of my excuses down and follow Jesus. When He calls me, I must respond to that call and not take the call lightly. It means life or death to those who are waiting to hear about Jesus.

    Death to life.

  15. Death to life.

    This statement has a Heavenly meaning and an Earthly meaning. The Heavenly meaning is salvation, eternal life. I do not know much about Heaven except that “my Father’s house has many rooms and Christ has prepared a place for me.” (John 14:2) A place where “there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. For the old world and its evils are gone forever.” (Rev 21:3-4)

    The Earthly meaning is discipleship. In the Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer makes a distinction between cheap grace and costly grace:

    “Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.”

    “Costly grace is the treasure hidden in the field; for the sake of it a man will gladly go and sell all that he has; It is the pearl of great price to buy which the merchant will sell all his goods. It is the kingly rule of Christ, for whose sake a man will pluck out the eye which causes him to stumble; it is the call of Jesus Christ at which the disciple leaves his nets and follows Him.

    Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock.

    Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: “ye were bought at a price,” and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God.”

    Death to life… costly grace that results in discipleship.

  16. Death to life.

    When Jesus told the disciples “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men,” there was an understanding of the personal cost. For most it meant leaving family, jobs, stable income, and a willingness to give up years of their lives to follow Jesus.

    The Tangible Kingdom primer that Pastor John introduced earlier in the year points out that “discipleship today has become passive, and has been tailored to fit the consumer lifestyle. It costs very little in most contexts to become a disciple – attending a class, completing a workbook, or completing a program. What we need is a new definition of discipleship. What if discipleship became more costly in terms of time, effort, relationships or finances? What if discipleship became a real apprenticeship in community?”

    I am reminded of the theme of John David Mull’s sermon when we visited his church plant called The Vine this past summer. The theme was “LIVE HIM”. “L” stood for “Lost People Matter”. “I” stood for “It’s Not About Me”.

    As I go through the day and reflect on my call to discipleship, I will focus on these two themes: Lost People Matter; and It’s Not About Me!

    Death to life… Gospel, Community and Mission!

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