Wednesday, January 20, 2016

"Obey Men" Addition

Still editing

ADDITION to "Should we Obey Men?"
as follows:

Jesus helped us to keep a balanced perspective when deciding to obey men.
Of all men, Jesus would be the foremost one to obey. Yet it may surprise you that Jesus did not ask for absolute obedience. If this is so, then certainly, men should not expect absolute obedience either.
If we examine the basis for obedience Christ does request of his followers,
then we can have clarity about the basis for obedience, we may rightly seek and accept, toward certain men.
Although it may not seem to be related, I am going to now post a question I received about John12:47-48. Within my reply, the kind of obedience we display toward those who are genuine under-priests of Christ, may be clarified (Mal.2:7; Rev.5:9-10; Heb.2:17; 10:21; 3:6).

 I have been reading John & a passage in it is some what perplexing me as to what Jesus was actually meaning. He is saying that He will not judge those who hear Him but do not obey, yet He also says that those who reject Him will be judged? Surely if you hear His words & do not obey them or at least try to obey them are you not disobeying/rejecting Him & His teachings?
John 12:47-48

Jesus did not say "obey". .
He said, "believing".
If you don't grasp that, perhaps you could look at the Greek (LINK).

It would also help to consider the context of John, chapter 12, to know what Jesus meant by "not judging the world".
But there are a few points to make first, so that the context is understood.

    [If you have read the recent Blog Post, you know that the "world" in John 
     chapter 12, was the Jewish "system" of religion 
     (again, check the Greek of John12:47). 
     Remember, that these are the ones God sent Jesus to (John3:17; 1:11; Matt.15:24)...  
     to save them as a nation due to their leaving God (Matt.15:24; John1:11; Acts 13:24).]

When Jesus said, "And if any man hear my words, and believe not", it helps to consult the context to know whom he is referring to (verses 36-43), and why they believe or don't believe...
36 Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.
37 Even after Jesus had performed so many signs in their presence, they still would not believe in him. 
38 This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet:
“Lord, who has believed our message
    and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
39 For this reason they could not believe, because, as Isaiah says elsewhere:
40 “He has blinded their eyes
    and hardened their hearts, (This is the same as 2Thess.2:11)
so they can neither see with their eyes,
    nor understand with their hearts,
    nor turn—and I would heal them.”
41 Isaiah said this because he saw Jesus’ glory and spoke about him.
42 Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they would not openly acknowledge their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved human praise more than praise from God.

So we see two groups OF JEWS being portrayed... JEWs who would not believe, and JEWS who did believe, but were unwilling to profess/confess, him (John12:17,19,37).  Both groups were deficient before God, because God's spirit had empowered Christ to perform miracles/works of God.
At John 10:37-38 Jesus said;
"If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father."
("The father in me", as meaning, God's spirit in him  -1Cor.3:16; John17:21,23; 14:23)
That ties in with John 14:11 and John7:31, 
and John12:44-45 and John12:49-50...
44 Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. 45 The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me. 49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”

Can you see from those words, that God empowered Jesus to display works that would prove that Christ's teachings were from God?

So to get to the point....
Was it Jesus who personally judged or saved the Jewish nation? 
Or, was it the words of God?

Jesus made the answer clear, when he said; "48 There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. "
it was God's message that would be the "measuring line" stretched over Jerusalem, to measure it's righteousness and it's sins. It was not the person of Jesus Christ, who even refused to take it upon himself to condemn the Devil (Jude 1:9). Also, when the wicked revile God's messengers, the angel/messengers do not accuse such blasphemers (Rev.13:6; 2Thess.2:4,9; Rev.13:4), 
but the angels limit their message to the condemnation from God, which they have been sent as messengers, to declare 
(2Pet.2:10-12; Rev.11:3,5; Jer.23:29; Hosea6:5).

This goes along with the most recent post about "loving our enemies". Within that post, the distinction between condemning others, and declaring God's condemnation, is clarified.
That is exactly what Jesus was explaining, at John12:47-48. 
The whole point, is that it is not as you ask... 
"are you not disobeying/rejecting Him & His teachings?"
....It is rejecting the word of God via spirit, which Christ and his brothers, merely convey. (Rev.3:14; Matt.10:20)
On the basis of the word of God, opposers are judged... because they reject the words of God... not because they reject the person of Jesus.

This is why Jesus DID preach obedience to his words (which were from God)...
"For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken." (John12:49)
"Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching (from God). My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them." (John14:23)
(Yet John12:47 does not say "obey", it says "believe".)
The whole point of Christ's miracles, was so that people could, believe... believe that all of his words truly were, from God 
(John 10:37-38; 14:11; 1John5:9).
When they obeyed what Jesus taught from God, they were heeding the words of God (John 12:49). Jesus wanted to make that clear, as do all his faithful brothers.

You also make this quote...
"He also says that those who reject Him will be judged"
He says;  There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept MY WORDSthe very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day.
Those judged, are on the basis of Christ's message from God,
not on their rejection of Christ.
I am hoping you see that difference, which Christ spoke so often about, so that we could understand this point.

Jesus came to bring a message from God, to the Jewish nation, to save them from their sins and from death. He did this by his own obedience to God's words (Phil.2:8; Heb.10:9).
It was his message from God that had saving power... not Jesus as a person.
A little flock of Jews, accepted Christ, through their acceptance of his teachings, and so, received those blessings (Luke12:32; Rom.9:27).
Yet they received them, not because they liked and welcomed Jesus as a person,
but because they feared the word of God, coming from Christ's mouth, as God's messenger/Archangel.

It is helpful to read John12:47-48, with verse 49...
"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. 48 The one who rejects Me (How?)>>>and doesn’t accept My sayings, has this as his judge: The word I have spoken will judge him on the last day. ****49 For I have not spoken on My own, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a command as to what I should say and what I should speak."****
It also helps to remember Luke12:10...
"And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven."
Who empowered Jesus to perform the miracles which testified, that Christ was a messenger of God?
Who empowered Jesus to speak God's words?
Was it not Holy Spirit?
Once again we see, that it is not obeying or rejecting Christ that matters...
It is obeying God's spirit from his mouth (John20:22)... the word of God (Rev.1:16; Eph.6:17; Heb.4:12-13).

I am hoping you see the difference between those who believe and those who obey (see Greek),
as well as the difference between obeying and accepting Christ, 
or obeying and accepting the word of God, through Christ. 

We can apply this to any who claim to be a spokesman of God.
Do they speak the words of God, or their own words?
(John 7:16-18; 16:13; 14:26; 15:26; Acts5:32) 
God bears witness about his genuine representatives (Isa.44:1-3,23,26).
(1John 5:6-8 -- John7:37-39; Rev.22:17; 6:9-10; 18:24; Matt.10:20; 1Cor.2:4,13; Eph.6:17; 1Thess.1:5; Heb.4:12; Rev.22:6)

If you do see the difference between obeying men, and obeying God's word through men (including Christ), then you may have your answer about John12:47-48.
Please let me know.
Love in Christ,

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