November 05, 2020 – Thursday
John 8:31-32 NIV
31 To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said, “If you hold to My teaching, you are really my disciples.
32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
Yesterday we ended with verse 30 where we read, Even as He spoke, many believed in Him. While the Pharisee’s remained blind to the truth of His words, many heard Him and believed in Him. They believed in spite of the disbelief surrounding them from the Pharisees.
For those who heard and believed, He had an even greater message for them, If you hold to My teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. Here He acknowledges their belief is new and perhaps tenuous, so He tells them they must hold on to His teaching. In holding on He promises they will really become His disciples. And further, the more they hold on, they more they will know of the truth which will set them free.
Many versions read, If you continue in My word, then you are truly My disciples but my favorite versions read If you abide in My word, you are truly My disciples. While holding to His teaching or continuing in His word are valid translations, to abide in His word has a special meaning for me as He abides in us as we abide in Him, (1 John 4:13) By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.
What does it mean to hold onto His word, continue in His word, to abide in His word? It means in all three cases, literally being at home with it and in it. It means making His word a part of our life, a regular and enduring inspiration that stimulates us time and time again to do good and move ever closer towards Jesus. How closely do we hold to His word? How closely do we seek to follow and keep His word? The more closely we do so, the more we abide in Him and His word day by day. The more we truly become His disciples.
Prayer: Almighty God – Help us to hold tightly to Jesus’ words. Help us to hold His words so closely they abide in us and we in them. Help us to daily become every more His disciples. We know the Holy Spirit abides in us as believers. Helps us to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and the strength to follow it daily. – In Jesus’ name. Amen.