Read John 8
This part of this chapter contains some of my favorite words from our Master. Many had rejected him. Many challenged him. Many were just blind to the truth, but some believed and wanted to follow him. So, to them he said.
If you abide in my words, you are my disciples indeed, and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set your free.
If you believe in Jesus, that he is the Son of God, and comes with the authority of the Father, and your sound mind tells you to follow him and do what he says, then you are his disciple. It’s not just knowing the words. It’s knowing their author and committing to being his disciple. You follow him by following what he taught you.
Then, you shall know the truth. What truth? Truth, as we know it from falsehood, is certainly within this promise, but you also get to know Truth with a capital T. You know God through Jesus Christ. In that intimate relationship, you are free from sin and free from death.
You will live eternally, but most of all, you are free to live as God designed you to live. It’s the most important thing that you will do.
Many of the Jews were not up to this commitment. They were Abraham’s children. That checked the box as far as they were concerned. When they heard the words set free, they countered, who are we that we need to be set free. We were never slaves!
Had Jesus been inclined to dispute facts instead of bringing life, he might have pointed out the more than 400 years of slavery in Egypt to the people claiming to be Abraham’s children and followers of the Law of Moses.
It seems that four centuries slipped their minds. They had also been captive in Babylon for a good stretch. Slaves, captives, prisoners, and other terms of subjugation fit this group extremely well, but the real condition from which they needed emancipation was sin.
Jesus confronted them boldly about their predicament.
I am from above. You are from below.
My Father is in heaven. Yours is the Devil!
Ouch! Just Ouch!
Who is your daddy?
He continued this discourse on the ignorance of many of God’s Chosen People. The reason that you don’t believe is that you belong to the Devil. Here is your chance to remedy that situation, that incarceration, that condemnation that subjugates you, but you won’t recognize the Illumination before you.
Here is the dichotomy. You follow God or you follow the Devil. There is no middle ground, no sitting on the fence, and no procrastination. There is no undecided category! You are dead or you are alive.
Jesus is the light of the world. In him is life. He is our Lord. Let this never be a question in our lives. Let it always be an affirmation.
Jesus is light.
Jesus is life.
Jesus is Lord.