Vintage Message: John 6:35-71

Vintage message from August 26, 2001.

This is the problem with us: we don’t want to know the truth; we don’t want to hear the truth; we don’t want to believe the truth because the truth takes us out of our comfort zone. Jesus is the Bread. Jesus is the Life. It comes through Him; no where else, but we don’t like hearing that because each and every one of us in this room today and every person on the face of this world has a scenario within the flesh that does not agree with God in Heaven in giving us Jesus as our Savior and Him alone.

“Well, okay, I can accept Jesus as my Savior if He will let me do this, or if He will accept me in that, or if He will accept this group of people or that group of people. If He will accept us for our issues of sin then maybe I can believe Him, but I’ve got issues of sin and those people have issues of sin that deny their need for Jesus Christ.” And so you hear people say, “Well really, there’s many ways to heaven.” There are not many ways to heaven. There are not many ways to be saved. There are not many ways to be with the Father in eternity, and Jesus says it right here: that if people want life, they have to come to Him because He is the Bread of Life.

And I know that steps on our toes. It has stepped on my toes many times, because there have been things in my life that I’ve not been wanting to give up; things I was unwilling to give up; things I was unwilling to change; friends that I’ve had that have issues of sin that were not willing to change, but their issues of sin and my issues of sin were contrary to the things that Jesus did and said; the life that He would have me live, so therefore I had to argue with Him, and change His Word for me so that it fit my lifestyle, and I called Him a liar. “Oh, yeah. You may be from God, but You’re only one of the ways to get to heaven. I’ll find another way because I don’t want to give up my lifestyle. I don’t want to give up my sin!” But Jesus says we have to come to Him. We have to come through Him…

And even though I still argue with Him from time to time, I have dealt with some of those issues, and now I believe that the things in my life that were holding me back are sin issues. They are not Him. They are me, and my resistance to what He has told me, and I can admit that. I can confess that…

Understand something. Once you have come into the grace of Jesus Christ, once you have received Him in, and are willing to call the issues in your life sin, and accept Him for Who He is, the Savior and Forgiver of your sin, then He won’t drive you away, even if from time to time you struggle with those issues of sin. It’s not the issue of sin that’s the problem. It’s our willingness to call sin sin; our willingness to confess sin as sin that becomes the problem. We drive ourselves away. He doesn’t drive us away…

[This is] a question I think need to ask myself, that each of us needs to ask ourselves. Does Jesus offend us? The things that He’s asking us to change in our life that we don’t want to change, are we offended because Jesus said we must do it? The life that He’s calling us to, does it offend us? The requirements that Jesus lays out for us, does it offend us? I have to say, yes, sometimes I am offended by the things of Jesus, because He is holy, and He is righteous, and I am not. And I am offended, oftentimes, by the things that He asks of me, because I’m not ready to give up. I’m not ready to give up the things in my life. I’m not ready to give up my life, and so, yes, I have to answer, I am “offended”…

We eat and are filled and are satisfied when we receive Jesus into our life and are walking in fellowship with Him and each other. That is the way that we fill ourselves up… My spirit is satisfied because I can sit here and read His Word and even though I don’t like it, it is food that satisfies… Well, let me tell you, it’s good for you! I don’t care if you like what it has to say. I don’t care what you have to give up. Let me tell you what you’re going to have to give up: your flesh and the things that fulfill your flesh and the driving desire you have to see your flesh put forward, because nothing in the flesh counts. You can hate me for saying this, but guess what? It’s not me! Jesus Himself said it, and people who come up with every excuse in the book why they should be able to fulfill their flesh and still get into heaven, have not read John. They have not heard the Words of Jesus or accepted them, and they are offended by it…

What matters is that we understand that Jesus is eternal life; that he is not concerned about our flesh and the comfort of our flesh; but that He is concerned about our soul. He is concerned about bringing our spirit into fellowship and love relationship with His Father. And the will of the Father is that everyone knows, everyone hears, everyone has a chance, everyone is given the opportunity to know that they need to make a choice to receive Jesus Christ. And it’s not easy, and it’s not fun, and we may even be offended by it, but it’s the truth, and we don’t often like the truth. The truth offends us. The truth offends me, because I like the lie: the lie that says I can do what I want, I can live how I want, I can do the things in the flesh that I want, and still be obedient to God. But it’s not true, and it just shows that I live for the flesh and the fulfillment of the flesh, but the flesh counts for nothing. If you’re doing it in the flesh, if you’re trying to fulfill your flesh, if you’re trying to protect and save up for your future so that your flesh will be comfortable, guess what? You may succeed, but it means nothing. To eternity, it means nothing.

Pastor Dave Elkins