Here is the sermon for Wednesday night, June 4th, 2008.
JOHN PART 34
NOT OF THIS WORLD
Jesus reveals the truth that He is different than all mankind. His origin is from above, ours is from below. If we don’t put our complete faith and trust in Him, we will die under the curse of sin.
How many of you have ever heard of SETI? This is a scientific group that is looking for life outside our planet. It is an acronym standing for: Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence.
They have radio dishes pointing to all different places, hoping for some type of communication with life outside our planet.
Well, this sermon is not about is there life on other planets or not. This sermon is going to teach us that there is a supernatural life outside this planet we live in. We don’t need radio dishes, or send out spaceships, or things like that to look for it. This supernatural life has already been revealed to us – through Scripture.
Jesus came from heaven, lived as a man amongst men, and died for our sins. He rose from the grave and ascended into heaven. Though He lived in the world, He was truly, “not of this world.”
The Pharisees and Scribes that Jesus is talking too here are of this world. They think that because they are religious and have spent a lifetime of Study into the Torah and the Tanakh (Law and Prophets) that they are pious, holy men.
But as Jesus has been teaching them, to reject Him, is to reject both what the Law and Prophets truly teach and it is ultimately a rejection of Father God.
Last time we saw that the Pharisees and Teachers of the Law rejected Jesus testimony on a religious technicality.
Jesus didn’t need the testimony of man because He knew who He was, plus He had the testimony of the Father.
Jesus now reveals that these Pharisees are of this world, while He is not.
Let’s look into our text tonight and see what the Lord would teach us.
1. The meaningless search of man.
John 8:21-22 NAB – 21 He said to them again, “I am going away and you will look for me, but you will die in your sin. Where I am going you cannot come.” 22 So the Jews said, “He is not going to kill himself, is he, because he said, ‘Where I am going you cannot come’?”
A. Earlier these Jewish leaders had wanted to arrest Jesus.
But they didn’t because it wasn’t the Father’s time and because of the crowds of people themselves.
B. Now Jesus tells them that He is going away, and they will look for Him.
I think this is more than just talking about His death here. I think it is referring to the Father’s complete redemption plan. He will die, be buried, be raised from the dead, and ascend into Heaven, from where He came.
C. After Jesus is gone, the Jewish people will continue to look for the coming of their Messiah, not realizing that He has already come.
They rejected His coming. As I said before, there were looking for some political leader, not the suffering servant that Jesus came as. They should have recognized the signs and prophecies pointing to Christ and His coming, but their condition – sinners – kept them from seeing the truth of who Jesus is. All other supposed Messiahs that would come after Jesus to the Jewish nation will be false Messiahs, not leading people to the Father, but leading them further astray into error.
D. Jesus told them that they couldn’t find Him and they would die in their sin and could not come to be with Him.
The Phrase, “die in your sin” is pretty important here. Sin is in the Greek, singular form. It is not sins, but sin, one sin. That sin being the rejection of Jesus Christ. Those are pretty blunt words that Jesus spoke to them here. What did He mean by these words. I like the way the Amplified Bible translates it here.
John 8:21 AMP – Therefore He said again to them, I am going away, and you will be looking for Me, and you will die in (under the curse of) your sin. Where I am going, it is not possible for you to come.
Those who refuse to acknowledge Christ Jesus for who He is will die under the curse of sin. Or they will be punished for their refusal to accept Him and their depraved lives and hearts. They cannot, nor will not enter heaven from where Jesus came and returned.
E. Again, the Jewish leaders are confused by what Jesus is saying (v. 22).
What we have here is the proof of the true condition of the Pharisee’s hearts – lost, dark, and full of sin. They’re continued refusal to accept Jesus as their Messiah and Savior continued to cloud their understanding. They knew Jesus was talking about His death, but they were thinking that maybe He was going to kill Himself. In the same way, when people refuse to accept the truths of Jesus and His sacrifice for our sins, that refusal will cloud their minds further and take them off into more error and darkness.
2. The revelation of Christ as the I AM.
John 8:23-24 NAB – 23 He said to them, “You belong to what is below, I belong to what is above. You belong to this world, but I do not belong to this world. 24 That is why I told you that you will die in your sins. For if you do not believe that I AM, you will die in your sins.”
A. These Jewish leaders may be religious, but they are from a different world than Christ is from.
B. They are from below, are of this world.
The Amplified Bible translates “world” as, “This earthly order.” The Greek word is kosmos. It means, “World, adornment, the inhabitants of the earth, men, the ungodly multitude that is hostile toward the cause of Christ.” It also has the meaning of, “being shaped, pruned, and fashioned according to the dictates of this world.”
Jesus is not like them at all. Everything about Him is submitted to the Father. Everything about these Jewish leaders is submitted to the philosophies of this world.
Thereby their understanding is blinded.
C. Christ is the Great I AM (v. 24).
Most of our English bibles have the word, “he” there. If you notice, it is put in italics. There reason behind that is that it is not in the original text. The NAB (New American Bible), and a few others get it right, it is I AM. Jesus is claiming deity here. He is saying basically, unless you accept me and receive me as YHWH, you will die in your sins. You see, it is not enough to believe that Jesus was a good teacher or some prophet, you have to receive Him as God manifested in the flesh. He is God the Son, who came to earth to give His life as a ransom for many. Those who refuse, will die in their sins. Here the Greek word for sins is plural. The Pharisees main sin is refusal to believe in Jesus. This sin begets more sins.
Jesus Christ’s origin is not of this world. He has always been with the Father. Our origin is of this world and thereby in conflict with God. The only way for this conflict to be broken is by God Himself to draw us to Christ, and by His grace save us as we put our faith in Him.
It is important to pray for the lost, for only God can draw them to Christ, pray that their spiritual eyes might be opened that they may see the truth concerning Jesus and come to Him.