Archive for the ‘Johannine Gospel’ Category

Life From the Dead Or the Valley of Dry Bones   7 comments

Life from the Dead

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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Ezek. 37, 1-10

Israel’s condition here seen in a vision; fittingly illustrates the sinner’s spiritual condition.

I.

“Dry bones,” devoid of spiritual life.  Figure is not too strong.  Men are powerless to move Godward if life to themselves–are “very dry,” devoid of life.

II.

“Can these bones live?”  Is there any hope for a poor lost sinner?  Yes.  “The dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God and they that hear shall live.”  (Jno. 5, 21 & 25-26)  “He [is] able to save to the uttermost.”  (Heb. 7, 25)  No case is hopeless.

III.

Means to be used:

(1)  “Prophesy.”  “O ye dry bones, hear ye the word of the Lord” (v. 4).  “Preach the word” (2 Tim. 4, 2).  It pleaseth God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1, 21).  “The word of God is quick and powerful,” etc. (Heb. 4, 12).

(2)  Prayer for the Spirit to impart life.  “Come, O breath, and breathe upon these slain” (v. 9).  “Grieve not the Spirit” (Eph. 4, 30).  “Quench not the Spirit” (1 Thes. 5, 19).  We need his power to awaken and save sinful souls.

IV.

God waits to be gracious.  How concerned he is about our salvation.

Let us look with much prayer for his saving power.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

“Whom Having Not Seen Ye Love”   3 comments

Whom Having Not Seen Ye Love

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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1 Peter 1, 8

I.

They believed in him as Lord and Savior because of his life–his manifest goodness and love.  “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.”  “These are written [that] ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing, ye might have life through his name.”  (Jno. 20, 31)

II.

This faith brings him into our hearts, and so we come to love him not only for love for us in his death but for what he is to us in our inner experience.  He is our salvation indeed.  We do not see him, but [he] is more real to us than he was to his disciples when he was in the flesh.  We love him because he first loved us and because [he] is so much to us now.  How loving and lovable he is!  Who can refuse to love such a Friend?

III.

“And rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.”

Being accepted of God through him our hearts are filled with joy in him.

“Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say rejoice.” (Phils. 4, 4)

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

The Fellowship of Jesus Christ   4 comments

Fellowship of Jesus Christ

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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1 Cor. 1, 9

I.  

Ours is a high calling into “fellowship of Jesus Christ, into participation with him of the glorious things of God,” an enjoyment in common “with Christ” (Rev. 3, 20, 1 Jno. 1, 3).

II.

Fellowship with him in all the graces of his eternal kingdom, as:

(1)  Victory over sin.  “I have overcome the world.”  Seven promises to the “overcomers”–Rev. chapters 1 & 2.  Faith is the victory.  Blessed triumph!!

(2)  Peace.  “My peace I give unto you.”  “Peace be unto you.”  “We have peace with God,” supplanting strife in the soul.

(3)  Love to God and man, until we are disposed toward all men as he is–all desires, aspirations and hopes held in love, born of love.

(4)  Service.  “He went about doing good,” ministering to men.  “The fellowship of his sufferings.”  “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me.”

(5)  The climax–fellowship in his eternal glory.  “That they may be with me…that they may behold my glory which thou hast give  me” (Jno 17, 24).

Can the heart wish for more?

This is our privilege through or in Christ.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

John 20, 31   1 comment

John 20

Above:  The Original Text

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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EDITOR’S COMMENT:

The authorship of the Johannine Gospel is a matter of legitimate scholarly discussion and much uncertainty, despite certain traditions, actually.  I am comfortable with that situation.  My great-grandfather was wedded to certain traditions, as I am to my own set of them–frequently different traditions.

By the way, all of us–even those who protest vocally against tradition–affirm our favorite traditions.   Ironically, the lack of certain traditions becomes its own tradition.  I prefer to be intellectually honest about the matter and to avoid hypocrisy regarding this issue.  And I think that my great-grandfather was intellectually honest about his preferences among traditions also.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

FEBRUARY 6, 2014 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCUS AURELIUS CLEMENS PRUDENTIUS, POET AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF GEORGE VI, KING OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND

THE FEAST OF SAINT VEDAST (VAAST), ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF ARRAS AND CAMBRAI

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM BOYCE AND JOHN ALCOCK, ANGLICAN COMPOSERS

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Jno. 20, 31

I.

The richest book.   John wrote late in life after much thought, giving us a spiritual gospel, deep insight into our Lord’s life.  Selected his material to this end.

II.

“That ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God.”  Just to affirm it was not enough.  We need to discover it for ourselves.  “Flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto you, but my Father.”  Only belief that he is divine can explain him and his works.  Admit that and all is clear.

III.

“That believing ye might have life through him.”  This the great end to be desired.  “The end of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”  “Being justified by faith we have peace.”  “As many as received him to them gave he power to become the sons of God,” etc.  “The just shall live by faith.”  “That they might have life…abundantly.”  “This life is in his Son.”

IV.

How rich is this life!  Communion with God, the quickening and development of all our nobler powers of soul.

It uplifts the individual, the nations.  “On earth as in heaven.”  “Let this mind be in you.”  “We have the mind of Christ.”  “The end everlasting life.”

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

The Blessedness of Believers   1 comment

Blessedness of Believers

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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EDITOR’S COMMENT:

St. Thomas, Apostle, missionary, martyr, and honest doubter, is my favorite character in the Bible.  Make of that what you will, O reader.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

FEBRUARY 6, 2014 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCUS AURELIUS CLEMENS PRUDENTIUS, POET AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF GEORGE VI, KING OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND

THE FEAST OF SAINT VEDAST (VAAST), ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF ARRAS AND CAMBRAI

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM BOYCE AND JOHN ALCOCK, ANGLICAN COMPOSERS

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Jno. 20, 29

I.

The disciples forgot that he said he would rise and were in despair.  “We had hoped it was he,” etc.  Thomas was stubborn in his doubts.  Jesus spoke directly to him.  Thomas saw and believed and made the great confession.  His soul was thrilled; doubt and despair gone, joy flooded his soul–a glorious experience!

II.

We are not disadvantaged by being in time removed from the days of his flesh.  By our spiritual senses we may believe and rejoice.  “Flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto you, but my Father.”  Spirit surpasses the natural man.

(a)  Jesus responds to faith.  He satisfies the deepest longings of the soul, becomes more real than he was to the disciples.  “I know whom I have believed.”  Did not our hearts burn within us?”

(b)  Dwells within our hearts–“temples of the Holy Ghost.”  He reproduces his life in us, “Christ liveth in me,”

(c)  We are the more favored than was Thomas–have the record of his life and teaching, what he has done through the ages by his Spirit through the church, testimonies of millions, especially of loved ones.

How sweet it is!  Doubt?  No; but enjoy his presence.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

Consecration   2 comments

Consecration

Above:  The Original Text

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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Jno. 17, 19

I.

“Sanctify”–consecrate and devote myself that I thereby may purchase eternal redemption for them–see Jer. 12, 3.  The root idea is the consecration of persons and things to the service of God–opposed to what is common.  “For their sakes”–that they may receive the blessings that can be secured in no other way.  His teaching and religion aroused the hostility of the leaders of that day.  He faced it all and devoted himself to death to bring salvation to the people.

II.

I, a father, devote myself to the highest and best for the sake of my son, who must face the future.  What I can do to help him as he lives his life, I gladly undertake.  He must face a new day.

III.

As a churchman.  Without religion morals will disappear and the heart will find no stay.

The church alone has pious religion.  Hence I consecrate myself to God and the church to help carry on his work.

IV.

As a citizen, I devote myself to righteousness and peace among the nations of the earth, that we may have a just and lasting peace.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

In Christ We Have Peace   1 comment

In Christ We Have Peace

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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Jno. 16, 33

I.

In the unregenerate heart there is the spirit of strife, opposition to God, rebellion, at war with God.  It leads to sinful deeds, hurtful words and acts.

There can be no peace where there is conscious wrong in the heart.

II.

But when we turn to Jesus, yielding our will to him, he takes away the strife of sin, frees us from it and gives us peace.

(a)  Peace toward God, till his holy purpose is a pleasure.

(b)  Peace toward men; we love them, wish them well and try to help them when they are in need of it.

(c)  Victory over the world even as he overcame.  We live a victorious life, one of happy communion with God through Christ.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT