In an abrupt shift from Jesus' teaching to a focus on John the Baptist again, we find ourselves in Aenon, near Salim in the land of Judea where the apostle John shows us the historical connection between Jesus’ and John the Baptist's ministries. Both Jesus and John are in the area baptizing, but we are starting to see a transition. More and more disciples are starting to gather around Jesus and less around John. But John was perfectly aware of His position and God’s plan for His life. He was content preparing a way for Jesus and slowly fading into the shadows as Jesus move into the spotlight. This is, and was, always the plan.
Here we have the account of Nicodemus' "secret meeting" with Jesus. A fundamental truth is revealed to us through this conversation when Jesus proclaims, "you must be born again." People still marvel at this, but Jesus explains the nature of the experience when He explains that the Holy Spirit is working in us.
Like every Jewish man, Jesus goes to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. While there, He becomes rightfully upset at how the Temple has been turned into a marketplace, and as a result, He drives the merchants, money changers, and all the animals out of the Court of the Gentiles. When asked to give a sign to prove He had the authority to do these things, His answer confuses them. However, when Jesus rose from the dead, His disciples remembered this day.
Jesus and the disciples attend a wedding feast where his mother points out a potentially embarrassing moment which He uses to demonstrate the visible presence of God, the first of the "signs" confirming His identity. His presence confirms marriage is God's plan, a holy and sacred institution; the basis for every culture.
In this last section of the first chapter of the Gospel of John, we finally get to see Jesus in the flesh so to speak. Previously, we just heard about Jesus, but now we see Him in action. We also see a beautiful demonstration of how evangelism is supposed to work.
John the Baptist is quite a prominent figure in the New Testament, being mentioned almost 90 times. He was sent to call Israel to repentance, baptizing them in water, and to prepare them to meet their Messiah. As we continue on in this study of the Gospel of John, John briefly and succinctly describes John the Baptist's ministry.
The Gospel of John, like the other gospels, tells the story of Jesus and His life on this earth. But where the others focus more on historical record of Jesus, John takes a more theological approach. In this first part of chapter 1, John teaches on the nature of Jesus Christ in order that we can fully recognize the impact of His teachings and actions.
It is important to understand the culture and identity of who we are as a church. At Living Hope Family Church in Marana, we understand as believers in Jesus we have been given authority to be His ambassadors on the earth. His promise to be with us should give us the confidence to serve God in the local Church as the members of a body work together. We each have a part to fulfill in the work of expanding the kingdom.
It is important to understand the culture and identity of who we are as a church. At Living Hope Family Church in Marana, we understand Jesus Christ has given people in leadership to believers to build up the worldwide Church as well as the local Church in order to equip every believer with a part in working in the kingdom of God. We are ambassadors for Christ.
It is important to understand the culture and identity of who we are as a church. At Living Hope Family Church in Marana, our mission statement is to evangelize the lost, equip the saints, and empower them to step out into what God has called them to do. The first step is to evangelize. There is a world full of people who are living their life with no hope. It is our responsibility to share the gospel with them.