Search the Scriptures they testify of me

Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me

The Gospel writer, the Evangelist John, here records the words of Jesus to a gathering of Jews. This particular verse is found in chapter 5 and verse 39, but the entire chapter is the context.

Context is vital.

Jesus  here flags up a critical, a very critical perspective. It goes to the heart of the distinction to be made between Judaism and Christianity. It goes to the heart of how the Christian is to interpret the sacred writings of the Jews. It goes to the heart of what Christianity is and how it works.

In the last post, we saw how a living trust – a total lifestyle – was required for the follower of Jesus Christ – and going to heaven in the Christian conception of the universe is about a person trusting their entire life to living out the teaching of Jesus Christ, and doing so by the power of God’s very real grace in their life.

To obey Jesus Christ is to know the power and protection of God in this life, and to know and be with God eternally hereafter.

Jesus is the fulfilment of the Old Testament Scriptures – the sacred writings of the Jews. Those Jewish writings are both prophetic of, and preparatory for, the coming of Christ.

They are but the stage and the setting for the real drama – the life, the teaching, the ministry, the atoning death and the eternal divine power of the Resurrection of Christ, the Judgement to come and eternal life.

The Jewish writings not only foretold Christ in so many places and so many ways, but they demonstrated the critical truth about human beings which we all need to understand and accept.

Human beings are sinners incapable of saving themselves from the evil in their own hearts, and so from the just Condemnation of a Holy and Righteous God.

We are just not good enough, and never can be !

The Jews manifestly failed time and again over the centuries to do what Jesus has already said earlier in John’s Gospel: OBEY GOD.

Even though they were chosen; even though God showed his remarkable favour to them, they could not truly obey him. No matter which figure or event recorded in the Old Testament we take, no-one and no event was perfect.

Sin always enters into the equation somewhere along the line. Indeed we see time and again God turning evil to account.

Jesus Christ becomes the ultimate fulfilment of the Jewish religion in all its aspects. He is

  • the last and final Prophet of the Jewish faith – the bearer of a message from God
  • himself the Message – in what he teaches and in what he actually does, both in miracles and in dying & rising again
  • the ultimate sacrifice to God on behalf of mankind – the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, John says earlier in his gospel when he records the words of John the Baptist
  • the Person for us to follow [obey] – a living example, a model, a friend who shows us the way we need to go, having himself gone that way

It is no longer about outward obedience and show in forms of ritual, dates and events: it is now living a life of relationship with God as God, giving up Self as our god in our lives…

Jesus Christ and  his teaching [both verbal and example] go to the heart of the matter – the sin of mankind and how to eradicate it.

There is of course nothing which helpless sinners can do about their sin.


Which is why Christ dies and rises again.

There is nothing I can do to make it right with God. Nothing.

I cannot even realise that I am a sinner and in need of God ‘s help – never mind take the step of turning to God or coming to obey God.

Jesus Christ alone has done it for me; and Jesus Christ alone can go on doing for me what needs to be done in my life to obey God.

It is all of God  and none of Me. Me must die, and Me must take its place in God’s perspective of this world, not My perspective of this world, tainted as it is by the sin I inherited from my forefathers.

God is first, and God is last, and God is everything in between.

The Bible says so.

By Christianity

The personal icon photograph shows God's creation, the world. It reminds us that God is the Creator of all - the almighty, the all knowing and all present - the one who is most important of all. The one to whom we owe all, and the one to whom we will answer for all. The site's header image of the Bible [King James Authorised Version], a map, a light and a compass represent to us that God's word in the Bible is our spiritual map, illumination and guide through this life. Those who obey his teaching will know his presence and power - Gospel of John, chapter 14, verse 23

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