Many believed in Him
John 10:22-42 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
At that time the Feast of the Dedication took place at Jerusalem; 23 it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple in the portico of Solomon. 24 The Jews then gathered around Him, and were saying to Him, “How long will You keep us in suspense? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me. 26 But you do not believe because you are not of My sheep. 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”
31 The Jews picked up stones again to stone Him. 32 Jesus answered them, “I showed you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you stoning Me?” 33 The Jews answered Him, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy; and because You, being a man, make Yourself out to be God.” 34 Jesus answered them, “Has it not been written in your Law, ‘I said, you are gods’? 35 If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), 36 do you say of Him, whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? 37 If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; 38 but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.” 39 Therefore they were seeking again to seize Him, and He eluded their grasp.
40 And He went away again beyond the Jordan to the place where John was first baptizing, and He was staying there. 41 Many came to Him and were saying, “While John performed no sign, yet everything John said about this man was true.” 42 Many believed in Him there.
1 John 1:1-4 says: What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of Life— and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us— what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. These things we write, so that our joy may be made complete. That is the essence of the heart of a believer’s desire to share what they have come to know. The world often rejects the sharing of the good news of the kingdom of God. At times it may be the messenger they reject. Perhaps our lives don’t well reflect what we ourselves have come to know, fellowship with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. But it is also the message and Jesus Himself that they reject. It is hard for the believer, knowing truth, to understand how and why an unbeliever would not receive what seems obvious to us. In 1 Corinthians 1:18 Paul says: the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. What is it then that is different? The word of the cross, the message of the gospel, the truth of God’s word and the fellowship with the Father and Jesus are the same, yet to some it is foolishness and to some the life changing power of God.
In today’s text Jesus says: “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me… If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.” Even Jesus who lived a loving compassionate life, Jesus who did miraculous things continually as He taught and ministered, even He was not accepted or His truth received by all. In John 15:18-25 Jesus says: “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates Me hates My Father also. If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well. But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their Law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’” We should not be surprised then that many will reject what we share. Far too many in the church though have become silent, either fearing they will be rejected or bowing to the world’s idea that the gospel is offensive.
Jesus didn’t stop telling the truth because He was rejected by some. Today’s text says: And He went away again beyond the Jordan to the place where John was first baptizing, and He was staying there. Many came to Him and were saying, “While John performed no sign, yet everything John said about this man was true.” Many believed in Him there. Even today, many will reject the gospel, many will reject the cross and Jesus Himself. We cannot be certain who will receive and who will reject what we have come to know. Those who reject us and the word we share should not be our concern we, like Jesus should continue on. Ecclesiastes 11:6 says: Sow your seed in the morning and do not be idle in the evening, for you do not know whether morning or evening sowing will succeed, or whether both of them alike will be good. In 1 Corinthians 3:6-11 Paul says: I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth. 8 Now he who plants and he who waters are one; but each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
It is not ours to determine or be concerned with the response to the truth of God’s word and what we have come to know. But neither should we become silent. Jesus says: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16) He says: “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.” To some our words will be foolishness, to others the life changing power of God. Some will believe and receive, others will not. Jesus says: “These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” Mark 16:19-20 tells us of the response and the result of the disciples to Jesus words. It says: So then, when the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the word by the signs that followed. If we are faithful, if we will continue to share what we have heard, what we have seen, what we have touched and know to be true, the life changing power of God will be present with us just as it was with them.
Thank You heavenly Father, Lord Jesus Christ and precious Holy Spirit for what You have done, what You have revealed to me and what You will do with and through me. Amen.