Share This Episode
Connect with Skip Heitzig Skip Heitzig Logo

Plain Truths About the Bread of Life - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
April 16, 2023 6:00 am

Plain Truths About the Bread of Life - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 1070 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

April 16, 2023 6:00 am

Mark Twain once remarked that "A lie can travel halfway around the world while truth is still lacing up its boots!" This section of John's Gospel has generated much confusion and misunderstanding. Even Jesus' original audience had trouble understanding His meaning, and when they did, they found the truth was difficult to bear. These "hard truths," however, are "the words of eternal life" (v. 68). Let's look at these four realities today.


He says, to whom shall we go? A true disciple sees leaving Jesus Christ as something unthinkable.

Unthinkable. Where else are we going to go? Welcome to Connect with Skip weekend edition. Hansel and Gretel are perhaps best known as the children who left a trail of breadcrumbs to help them find their way in the forest.

Well, if you're familiar with the story, you know that that didn't work out so great for them because the fact is, breadcrumbs don't make the best trail markers, but they do provide a nice snack for forest critters. Well, today in Connect with Skip weekend edition, Skip Heitzig shares a few truths about the bread of life, which can not only reliably help us find our way in life, but also sustain us during the journey. We'll learn more in just a moment, but first let's see what's going on in the Connect with Skip resource center this month. For those who knew Jesus while he walked this earth, the road to discovering and believing that Jesus was resurrected started in disheartening confusion, but it ended in decisive confirmation. And we're excited to send you a special set of resurrection resources by Skip that include five of his finest Easter messages for digital download or CD and a full video titled On the Road by Skip. Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem. And they talked together of all these things which had happened.

So it was while they conversed and reasoned that Jesus himself drew near and went with them. With your gift of support of $50 or more, we'll send you a copy of this hope-filled package of five audio messages for download or on CD and the full video On the Road, as thanks for your gift to expand Connect with Skip Heitzig to reach more people in major U.S. cities. So request your resource when you give and take a walk with Christ on the road to Emmaus.

Just call 800-922-1888 or visit slash offer. Open your Bibles to John chapter 6, where we'll look at verses 51 through 71. And as you turn there, we'll catch up with Skip Heitzig for the rest of this study. If you preach on false doctrine, false prophets, false believers, if you admonish people toward holiness, to some that can be offensive. But you've got to understand something. Though there were some who were offended in what Jesus said in the text that we just read, this sermon is mild compared to other sermons Jesus himself preached. Like the one he preached to the religious leaders, the Pharisees in Matthew chapter 23.

I won't give it all to you, but here's a snippet. Jesus said to them, whoa, unto you scribes, Pharisees, you hypocrites, you travel over land and sea to win a single convert. And when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are.

Ouch. That would be hard to hear if you're a religious leader. Or go back just a few weeks to the woman at the well of Samaria, when our Lord said to her, you've had five husbands and you aren't even married to the man you're living with now. But gee, that would be hard for her to hear, don't you think? I mean, she knows that.

Maybe she's trying to work her way through that and forget that past. And here's a guy who knows it and brings it up again. That'd be hard to hear. Here's another example. When Paul rebukes Peter at Antioch, now watch this. This is in Galatians chapter 2. Paul says, when Peter came to Antioch, I had to oppose him publicly, speaking strongly against what he was doing, for it was very wrong. That'd be hard, don't you think, for Peter to hear? Paul, this young upstart, rebuke him publicly?

I had a guy come up to me a few weeks ago. He said, you know, when I first came to hear you, I did not like you because I didn't like what you said. Because every message I heard from you, you're talking about being committed to Christ and totally surrendered and absolutely sold out. And I didn't like that. And I said, well good, at least you got the message. Now to his own admission, he was not a committed believer at that point.

He sensed things differently. But you know, I've been accused in the past of getting information about people during the week. Like somebody calls me and feeds me information about their husband or something. And then here I am on Sunday preaching directly to that one person. Or, and I kid you not, some guy said, you know, I actually thought you were following me around town, looking at seeing what I was doing during the week and then preaching about me on Sunday. Because to some people, the Spirit of God brings a level of conviction that is hard to bear. So here's the question, what do you do when there's a message that isn't so easy to hear that is hard to bear? Quick and easy answer, be open to it.

Be open. Because Paul writes, 1 Thessalonians 5, we exhort you brethren, warn those who are unruly. That's a military term, unruly. That's a military term, unruly.

It means to be out of rank or disorderly or insubordinate. And from time to time, I discover in my own life that I'm out of rank and I'm insubordinate and I'm not walking properly and I read something or hear something in the message, it gets me right back where I need to be. That's why I need to be open to it. Because we're not perfect people. And sometimes our parents would stroke our hair and say, good boy, it's okay. But not always.

Sometimes I felt the same hand on the backside in a firmer manner than the stroke on the hair. I also demonstrated their love. Here's an example. Years ago on the radio, there was a guy named Ted Malone. He had a radio program. He was the storyteller on the radio and a poet.

People loved him. Well, there was one sheepherder out in the backwaters of Idaho who said, he wrote a letter and said, Mr. Malone, would you mind on one of your broadcasts striking the note A, like A on the piano so I can hear it. He said, I have a violin, but I'm not close to a piano. I can't tune it. I love playing my violin.

There's no way that I can tune my instrument. Now this is before the modern age. Today there's a tuner on your iPhone and app for 99 cents.

This is way before then. So Mr. Malone obliged him and played the note A, recorded it, broadcast it over the airwaves. Two weeks later, he got a letter from the same shepherd saying, thank you. Now I'm in tune. Now that is exactly what hard words can do. They get us back in tune.

They recapture the missing note. And I find that all God's people need it. So true life will come by death. True words are hard to hear. Here's the third plain truth.

True motives will be discovered. Verse 64, Jesus continues, but there are some of you, now he's talking to disciples generically, not the 12 particularly, but disciples generically in that large crowd. There are some of you who do not believe, for Jesus knew from the beginning who they were, who did not believe, and who would betray him. And he said, therefore, I have said to you that no one can come to me unless it has been granted to him by my Father.

Now watch this. Verse 66, now watch this. Verse 66, from that time many of his disciples went back and walked with him no more.

That's a frightening verse. And if you Skip down to verse 70, Jesus answered them, did I not choose you, the 12? Now he's speaking to the 12, not the crowd of disciples, the 12.

And one of you is the devil. He spoke of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, for it was he who would betray him being one of the 12. Think about the word disciple. It appears in our text, it said some of the disciples in verse 66 said, this is a hard saying, and Jesus said to some of them, disciples, you don't believe. Now here's what you need to know about the word disciple. When you see the word, it doesn't necessarily imply somebody who believes in Jesus.

Because the word disciple in Greek is mafetes. It simply means a student, a learner, a student who would attach himself or herself to a teacher for whatever reason. I'm interested in what this teacher has to say. I'm the student. I'm the pupil. I'm being mentored by that person. It says nothing about motive, nothing about devotion, nothing about love, nothing about belief.

It's just somebody who is attracted to a teacher. Now in verse 66 when it talks about disciples of Jesus, speaking about people in that crowd who were interested, attracted in Jesus because he could do miracles, as we have already seen and belabored that point in past studies. And this is how it would work. Every time Jesus did a miracle, his ratings went up. Every time Jesus gave a sermon, his ratings went down. They loved his works.

They hated his words. Did a miracle? Up. Said something?

Down. You know, that's the thing about Christmas that I think about every year. You know why the world tolerates Christmas and even loves Jesus in a manger?

Yeah, it's like take him and put him back in the manger where he can't say anything because when he grows up and makes demands and commands, he is intolerable to most people, many people. They loved his works. They did not like his words.

They were thrill seekers. They were not truth seekers. They did not follow his teachings and when he started teaching things and what they heard was tough, they're done with him. They wanted a political ruler, a king who would deliver them from Rome's bondage, but he didn't come for that.

What they wanted, he would not give and what he offered, they would not receive. Okay, sometimes true motives are discovered as a person backslides into a former way of life. It's a shock when that happens to some of us. It's a shock because, man, they were here.

They were singing songs alongside of us. They were carrying their Bible. In fact, some of them carry big huge Bibles that you got to put in a wagon. They're so big and you're thinking, man, that guy's so spiritual.

You can't even lift that Bible. They may even be on staff at a church. They may even be on pastoral staff. You ever think about Judas? Judas was on staff with Jesus. Man, he was one of the 12 closest disciples, apostles. Jesus said one of you is a devil and he's referring to Judas Iscariot. I want you to listen to what John writes, not here, but in another book he writes. 1 John 2 verse 19, the same author says this, they went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us, but their going out showed that none of them belonged to us.

Did you get that? Their heart was eventually discovered. Their motive was eventually discovered.

True motives will be discovered. Not always here. Not always here. That's sometimes. At other times, people are so good at bluffing it, it will not be known until eternity, when they stand before God Himself, that that person was a hypocrite.

And here's why. We don't always see it because no human can ever fully see into another human's heart. Only God can. Jeremiah said in chapter 11 of his book, O Lord, you examine the deepest thoughts and the hearts and the minds. Hebrews chapter 4, the author says, nothing in all creation can hide from Him. Everything is naked and exposed before His eyes.

This is the God to whom we must explain all. See, hypocrisy is like this terribly insidious disease that is only waiting for the day of exposure. And sometimes the day is here and sometimes the day is there on the other side. There was a man who left church one Sunday after the sermon, and he's going out to the car and he's grumbling about the sermon. He didn't like it.

Maybe it was one of those hard word sermons. He's grumbling about the sermon, gets in the car, grumbles about the sermon, then he grumbles about the traffic he has to put up with, then he grumbles because the day is so hot, then he goes home and his wife serves him lunch and he grumbles about the food. And then he says to his family, well, let's pray before the meal. Now his little son's watching this. You can imagine what a little boy was thinking, especially when his father bows his head, he goes, Lord, thank you for today.

Thank you for the message and thank you for this food. And then he said, amen. And so the little boy said, Daddy, excuse me, but when you were fussing about the sermon and the day and the traffic, did God hear that?

Well, now the father is embarrassed and goes, well, yeah. And then the little boy said, and when you thank God for the food and the day and the sermon, did God hear that? And he said, yes, God heard that. And so the little boy would naturally ask this question, then, Dad, which of those did God believe?

Which of those did God, who's the real you, Dad? Let's go to the fourth and final truth, plain truth from the bread of life, and that is the true disciples will not leave. Now a group of disciples decided we're done. He's speaking hard words to us. We don't like his demands. He's not giving us manna. He's not giving us the miracles we wanted.

These aren't our expectations. We're done. So he turns to the 12 now, from the majority to the minority. Verse 67, Verse 67, then Jesus said to the 12, do you also want to go away? But Simon Peter answered him, so glad it was Peter. Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Also, we have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the son of the living God. I'm so glad Peter answered this question.

You know why? Because Peter always gets a bad rap, bad press from people and preachers. I'm convinced in heaven there's going to be a long line of preachers waiting to apologize to Peter for all the dumb things they said, and I'll be in that line, because I've said them too. But I notice that when Jesus asks questions to his disciples, Peter has the answer.

The other guys are kind of looking around going, oh, I don't know. An example, Caesarea Philippi, who do men say that I am? And they all answer differently. Then Jesus said, who do you say that I am? And it was Peter who said, you are the Christ, the son of the living God.

And he says as much here. Peter's answer reveals the true heart of a disciple, true marks of a true disciple. Mark number one, devotion.

Devotion, loyalty. He says, to whom shall we go? A true disciple sees leaving Jesus Christ as something unthinkable, unthinkable. Where else are we going to go? Now the reason that Peter is so devoted, so dedicated as no other person in Peter's life, no other prophet, no Pharisee, has ever done for him what Jesus did for him. His life changed since he met Jesus.

Where else are we going to go? Would you ever go back to your former way of life before Christ? Does that ever cross your mind?

You know, because sometimes the devil will tempt new believers and he'll say, remember what it was like before this whole religious thing? Remember that? Remember how many friends you had? Remember how much fun you had? And you go, yeah, I did have fun.

I did have friends. You know what that's called? It's called selective memory disorder. Because for some reason, when the devil brings that up, he doesn't want you to remember all the times you woke up so lonely, so filled without any kind of meaning or any kind of purpose, and you were crying out for help and crying out. He didn't want you to remind you of that. Peter said, where else am I going to go? That's mark number one, devotion. Mark number two, satisfaction of a true disciple, satisfaction. He says, you have the words of eternal life.

Now here's the very words that some are saying, we can't tolerate. Not a true disciple, a true disciple will go, that's life. These are the words of eternal life. Peter is fulfilled when Jesus spoke. The Greeks used to say that a man will always be unsatisfied with human food once he's tasted the nectar of the gods. After I came to Christ, my old life seemed so flat and boring and insipid and dull. And when I had been walking with Christ for the first few months, and I was just starting to get like, wow, this is like awesome.

This is like a natural high. And somebody said, hey man, why are you into that? Come back and do this kind of stuff again.

I thought, why would I ever go back to ramen noodles now that I have steak and lobster? That is so unsatisfying. You, Lord, have the words of eternal life. And here's the third mark of a true disciple, conviction.

Conviction. What Peter says in that final little verse in verse 68, or verse 69, also we have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Is that an arrogant statement? You know, it would be considered arrogant if you were to say, you know, it would be considered arrogant if he were today living, standing up in a public forum, for him to say, I believe and I know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. You know what people would say to him, don't you? I'd say, Peter, there's a lot of people in this crowd that don't hold your convictions.

They believe in a lot of other things. You can't say that. Well, if it's true, Peter can say it. And that's why Peter said it. Peter said it not because he was arrogant, but because he had encountered Christ and Jesus changed him and he knew what he was talking about. The reason many people lack this kind of conviction concerning Christ is they've never met him. It's funny how much a person can be an expert about Jesus Christ and an expert about Christianity and they've never met Christ.

Well, you know, many Christians just think this and that and this and that and this Jesus really was. And they go on, they're like these experts, they've never met him. It's sort of like a kid. You show them a meal and they say, I don't want that. I hate that. Well, have you ever tried it?

No. I just know that I hate it. And I've never tried it because I hate it.

Well, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. You can't say you hate it unless you've tried it. True disciples not only try it, they feast and they would say those very words that would offend some, they're life to me. The words of eternal life. There's something about food as we close. Food, to have any value, has to be eaten.

What if you just look at it and go, that's marvelous. This lunch looks really good. But you never eat it, then it will do you no good. So food, to have any value, must be eaten. Number two, you have to be hungry before you eat it. If you walk out of a restaurant and somebody offers you food, chances are you won't eat it because you've been eating something else. You have to be hungry before you partake of this bread. Number three, you have to do it personally.

Nobody can do it for you. You can never say, I'm so hungry, would you mind eating my lunch? Because you don't get nourishment by proxy. And nobody gets into heaven or gets saved by proxy. You can't grab onto somebody's coattails and because my parents believed I must be a Christian, doesn't matter if your parents believed. You have to believe. You have to come.

You have to partake. There's a reason why Christianity is called a personal relationship and that's because it's about you and Jesus. It doesn't matter what others in your family believe or what your friends believe or even what the people in your church believe. What matters is what you personally believe about Jesus. Now if you'd like to learn more about what it means to have that personal relationship with Jesus, we'd be happy to talk with you about that. Just give us a call at 1-800-922-1888 and let us explain how you can make a decision for Jesus.

Well, that's going to end our time for today. So before we go, if you'd like a copy of today's teaching, it's available on CD for just $4 plus shipping when you contact us at 1-800-922-1888 or when you visit Next time we'll discover how we can get a clearer picture of who Jesus is. So plan to join us right here in Connect with Skip Weekend Edition, a presentation of Connection Communications. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross. Cast all burdens on His word. Make a connection, a connection, a connection. Connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-16 06:15:04 / 2023-04-16 06:24:09 / 9

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime