October 16, 2020 – Friday
John 5:41-47 NIV
41 “I do not accept glory from human beings,
42 but I know you. I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts.
43 I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not accept Me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him.
44 How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?
45 “But do not think I will accuse you before the Father. Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set.
46 If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about Me.
47 But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?”
Today we will finish chapter five with the last seven verses and five occurrences of the word believe. Today Jesus continues with a discussion of testimony. First He lets the religious leaders know He does not accept glory from human beings and then goes on to indict them in verses 42-43, I know you. I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts. I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not accept Me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him.
Their rejection of the One sent by God is complete. Then He completes His indictment of them when He asks, How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? Self-serving glory from one another! With such behavior how and they believe He asks. If they glorify one another they have no need to seek the glory that comes from God. I recall reading how a parishioner after a service came up to the pastor and told him what a great message he had preached. The pastor replied, ‘Thanks, but Satan already beat you to it.’ We all like to hear how well we do (I know I do), but we must be very careful not to put that praise ahead of God’s glory. We preach for God’s glory not our own. Jesus saw that was not true for those who would not believe Him.
Then Jesus indicted them once again using Moses as their accuser. He did this in the last two verses of this chapter, If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about Me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say? They would not even consider that what Moses had written might apply to Jesus. Two examples should suffice. Deuteronomy 18:15, The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken. Going further back to Genesis 3:15, I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. How could they miss this one with His power over demons He could cast out from those possessed?
With His comments on Moses He has finished His indictment. David Guzik summarizes it this way, Jesus did not call these religious leaders to a new or a different faith. He called them to believe what Moses, what the Scriptures, what His works, what John the Baptist each testified about Jesus: that He is the Messiah, the Son of God and God the Son. If they refused to believe this overwhelming testimony, it was unlikely they would believe Jesus’ own words.
It is not much different today when there is such overwhelming evidence available to us for Jesus as the Messiah and the Son of God. Yet people chose all sorts of reasons not to believe while the evidence is clear and obvious. The choice of the free gift of Grace is always there, but many will choose to live a life rejecting Jesus and chose hell. God will not force them, although He will make the choice plain. He will even use us to share the truth, the gospel, of Jesus.
Prayer: Almighty God – Please equip us to share the Good News of Your Son. How He died on the cross for our sins and rose on the third day. Help us to share that one only has to believe – believe He did died for each and every person’s sins and is available to forgive them all their sins; to help them turn from a life of sin; and look forward to eternal life with Jesus as Lord and Savior. – Amen.