Sermon for March 7, 2021

Taking Jesus for granted?

John 6:25-43

  • Jesus had done many miracles when we finally get to chapter 6 of John. 
    • Water into wine
    • The royal official’s son
    • The invalid at the pool of Bethsaida (sometimes translated Bethesda or Bethzatha)          
  • He also made a very vocal argument when some complained that he healed on the Sabbath.  He said two things that they wanted to kill him over.  There are:
    • Claiming he is the Son of God.
    • He and the Father are One.
    • He is the Judge. (Jesus has final say) (John 5:16-30)
  • He also said directly that he is the Messiah (John 4:26)

It is that last one that we need to pay attention to! Then…Jesus feeds the 5000! (Notice the 12 baskets of leftovers!  Significant for the 12 tribes of Israel AND his 12 Disciples)

After this, the people see a Powerful Prophet, and their future king.  Finally, they could get their nation back after 765 years for Samaria (what use to be the northern kingdom of Israel (Assyria) and 620 years for Judah (Babylon))

What do the people do after they are full?

  • They want to make him their king…by force! (6:15) What does that mean?
    • That means there were 5000 men that were prepared to storm Jerusalem and overthrow Herod Antipas (the Tetrarch of this region, allowed to rule as king by authority of Caesar Augustus (Tiberius))
    • Normally, Caesar Augustus would not always be in Jerusalem because he ruled ¼ of the Roman Empire and so he had palaces in every major city he ruled.  When he was away, the Governor would rule Jerusalem (Pontius Pilate).  It was Passover time in Jerusalem, so everyone is there, including the Roman Military!
    • 5000 men were prepared to take over the Temple Mount by force!  What does Jesus do?  He went away!  Why?  It was the custom that the new king would lead the battle!
    • An interesting note:  Jesus breaks a cardinal no-no by feeding them.  He led them in a Passover seder away from the Temple. (This was one of three main pilgrimages to be made by Jews to be celebrated only at the Temple)

And so, Jesus goes up to a mountain by himself leaving his disciples to set sail to Capernaum without him.  Where his disciples disappointed with Jesus?  Well, they left without him, didn’t they?

Jesus follows them by walking on water!  Then comes the next day, one boat gone, and no one saw Jesus go with them, but they went to Capernaum too.  Now we get to today’s verses. (John 6:25-43)

The struggle with belief.  The people believe one thing and they have made THEIR plans clear the night before.  They also want heaven THEIR way.  Jesus says that that is not how it works!  Jesus says he is the way to heaven.  The people say this is not true.  They complain and Jesus tells them to shut up!  They are offended and the 5000 leave plus some disciples (not the inner 12, but they were complaining too)

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