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John Chapter 8:37-59

Cross the Bridge / David McGee
The Truth Network Radio
November 25, 2020 12:00 am

John Chapter 8:37-59

Cross the Bridge / David McGee

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November 25, 2020 12:00 am

Cross the Bridge 41059-2

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Is Jesus saying here that we have to keep his word in order to see eternal life? Well, that apparently is the implication. So, are you saying we're saved by works?

No. But when you get saved, everything changes. You're no longer your own master. You're no longer deciding what's right and wrong.

God is deciding what is right and wrong. Welcome to Cross the Bridge with David McGee. David is the senior pastor of the Bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina. Today, he's teaching through John chapter 8 with the message freedom.

We also have in the studio with us D.A. Brown, one of David's associate pastors. Welcome, brother.

Hey, Bob. As Christians, we are set free from the wages of sin, but you're scripturally supposed to use your freedom to serve God and serve others. Today, Pastor David jumps into that and more in part two of his teaching, Freedom. So we're in John chapter 8, verse 37. I know that you are Abraham's descendants, but you seek to kill me, because my word has no place in you. I speak what I have seen with my father, and you do what you have seen with your father. They answered and said to him, Abraham is our father. And Jesus said to them, if you are Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham. But now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth, which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this.

You do the deeds of your father. And then they said to him, we were not born of fornication. We have one father, God. And now they've said that.

It's kind of old now. Verse 42, Jesus said to them, if God were your father, you would love me. For I proceeded forth and came from God. Nor have I come of myself, but he sent me.

Now, this is interesting. This is an interesting verse, because he's saying, you know, if God were your father, you would love me and recognize where I came from and where I'm going. Understand, that is the litmus test for any religion or any denomination. Do they love Jesus? Do they proclaim Jesus? Do they recognize that he's the Son of God and he's the Messiah?

If not, guess what? It's not of God. I don't care what their intentions are. I don't care how honorable they may be.

I don't care how many good works they do. If they don't pass this litmus test, then they're not of God. Jesus at this point, it seems, is no longer interested in their wrong answers. Verse 43, why do you not understand my speech? Because you were not able to listen to my word.

We're getting down to it now. You are of your father, the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it. But because I tell you the truth, you do not believe me. Which of you convicts me of sin?

And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? He who is of God hears God's words. Therefore, you do not hear because you are not of God.

Well, it's on now, isn't it? He says, God's not your father. Abraham's not your father.

Your father is the devil. Which, you know, if you're a religious person and you hear that, wow, that's rocking your boat, isn't it? Now, he who is of God hears God's word. There again, what is God's word?

You're holding it in your lap. This is God's word. He who doesn't hear God's word, guess what? You don't belong to God. If you know God, you want to hear his voice.

You have a desire to be in the word. Now, maybe you're here this morning and you're going, well, but he said they're of the devil, but we all know that all people are God's children, whether they're unbelievers or whether they're Islamic or whether they're in a cult or whatever. I'm sorry, that's unscriptural. We are not all God's children. The Bible tells us that in John 1 verse 12. It says, but as many received him, to them he gave the right to become children of God to those who believe in his name. What does that mean? That means if you've not received him, if you've not believed in him, you're not God's child.

Now that may rock your boat if you've never heard that before. That's the bad news. The good news is God desires to adopt you. God is here this morning desiring a relationship with you where it's, it's now it's really complicated. So we have like a 400 page book on how do you do this? And there's a bunch of rules and a bunch of regulations.

No, it's said in this verse, receive, believe. Oh, it can't be that simple. Praise God, it's that simple. We complicate it.

We had all these different things and all these complications. Jesus here says, you know what? That the gospel of John says, receive and believe.

Romans chapter eight says, for as many as are led by the spirit of God, these are the sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the spirit of adoption by whom we cry out Abba father. You need to understand that Abba, some translations translate it father.

That's, that's really not a good translation. Abba is more like daddy, daddy. You know, if you've never prayed to God as your daddy, I would encourage you to do that because sometimes we can use that father term and it's a little distant for us. It's not very intimate.

And of course, you know, some of those hallowed prayers that you hear, Oh Lord, this that art thou with them from the father and all this stuff. There's no intimacy there. And I would encourage you see some of you right now are saying, that's not right. You shouldn't call God daddy. That's just, boy, that's bad.

You know why? And I love you because you're scared. You're afraid of the intimacy of relationship with the Lord. And you shouldn't be afraid of that. And especially as men guys, we have, we struggle with this commitment thing.

We struggle in the areas of relationships probably, and this is a generalization, but probably more than the ladies. Let me encourage you to pray like that and call him daddy because he longs for you to have that intimate relationship with him. And we've been adopted. Oh, how awesome is that? We've been adopted. Now, some of you may have a deeper appreciation of that than the rest of us. Some of you may have been adopted.

I can only imagine what that's like. Imagine if you will, you're at the orphanage and perhaps day after day people come and they line the children up and the parents go, Oh, I want that one. And maybe day after day, you're not chosen. Day after day, somebody else gets chosen. Day after day, you go out there to be chosen and day after day, you're not chosen.

Day after day, you get your hopes up and day after day, your hopes are dashed. But then one day the greatest father, the best daddy that has ever entered the orphanage comes in. Oh, and everybody knows, Oh, this is the deal. Whoever gets this deal, man, they've got it. And instead of passing by you, like has happened so many times before, he looks into your eyes and he says, I choose this one. I want this one to be mine.

I want to adopt this one. What an amazing thing. 1 John 3, 1 says, see how very much our heavenly father loves us for he allows us to be called his children.

And we really are. But the people who belong to this world don't know God. So they don't understand that we are his children. What an awesome thing. This next life lesson. If we have accepted Jesus, then we have been adopted and our children of God, or you could make that more personal.

If you have accepted Jesus, then you have been adopted and are children of God. Boy, what an awesome thing. You need something to brighten your day. There it is, man. You've been adopted. Did you do anything to deserve it?

No, no. You received him and you believed him and he did all the rest. Verse 48, then the Jews answered and said to him, do we not say rightly that you are a Samaritan and have a demon?

So they're down to it now. Verse 49, Jesus answered, I did not have a demon, but I honor my father and you dishonor me. And I do not seek my own glory.

There is one who seeks and judges. Most assuredly, I say to you, if anyone keeps my word, he shall never see death. You know, we hear this so much. I think we're a little jaded to it.

I think we don't really recognize what it says anymore. Do you understand what I just read to you? They will never see death. Let this sink in. Let this sink in for just a moment and it's talking about spiritual death. When we die, are you ready?

When we die, we don't stay dead. Is that radical or what? If you're in a place where the teaching isn't radical, it's probably not the truth because Jesus was very radical. And when somebody teaches that the Bible's not radical, it's not the Bible they're teaching. This is a radical book. I think more people have refused the weak form of Christianity or watered down version of Christianity. They've refused that rather than really refused Jesus.

This is amazing stuff. And he says, if anyone keeps my word. Now, does that mean, is Jesus saying here that we have to keep his word in order to see eternal life? Well, that apparently is the implication. So are you saying we're saved by works?

No, not saying that. But when you get saved, everything changes. You're no longer your own master. You're no longer deciding what's right and wrong. God is deciding what is right and wrong. And I like what Spurgeon said, the grace that does not change your life cannot save your soul. As you recognize that Jesus has forgiven you, there's a gratitude that begins to happen, a thankfulness that begins to happen and your life begins to change.

Now some people radically right then and there for the rest of their lives, some are a little more slower, but changes begin to happen and you begin to experience the freedom. So what if you don't keep his word? Are you going to heaven? I don't know. Is that the deal you want? Is that really the deal you want? Well, I want to go to heaven, but I don't care anything about this other stuff. I don't care anything about really following Jesus or joy or peace or any of those things. I just want to get in.

I just want a little fire insurance. Friend, are you willing to sell yourself that cheap? Are you willing to miss out on all that God has for your life?

I sure hope not, because God has more for you, more than you've ever imagined. We'll be right back with more from David McGee on Cross the Bridge. Right now, here's a word from associate pastor D.A.

Brown. Hey, Bob, we're excited about God's word going forth with Pastor David, and we want to pray for some people in these cities where we're broadcasting today. Buford, Gainesville, Macon, Milledgeville, Savannah, Snellville, and Thomasville, Georgia. God, we thank you for the people listening today in these areas. We pray that they would be encouraged in your word. They would realize that you want to bless them.

Lord, you have a good plan for them. God, we pray for those who are sick in the area that you would please heal them. And Lord, we pray for the pastors in the churches, that they would be ignited in all the good plans you have for them and sharing your word throughout their city. In Jesus' name, amen. Amen.

Thank you, brother. And now, let's get back to David McGee as he continues teaching verse by verse. Verse 52. Then the Jews said to him, Now we know that you have a demon.

They keep going with his personal attack. Abraham is dead in the prophets, and you say, If anyone keeps my word, he shall never taste death. Well, put your seat belts on.

We got a little turbulence coming here. Verse 53, Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead, and the prophets are dead? Who do you make yourself out to be?

And if they only knew, huh? Verse 54, Jesus answered, If I honor myself, my honor is nothing. It is my father who honors me, of whom you say that he is your God. Yet you have not known him, but I know him. And if I say I do not know him, I shall be a liar like you.

But I do know him and keep his word. Notice Jesus is not taking the seeker-sensitive approach here. Now, in part, because he's not dealing with seekers, he's dealing with religiously prideful people that he's confronting with the truth.

This next verse pushes him over the edge. Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day, and he saw it and was glad. Then the Jews said to him, You are not yet 50 years old, and have you seen Abraham? They're really not getting it.

They're really not wanting to get it. Verse 58, Jesus said to them, Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am. Now, understand, if you don't know parts of your Bible or specifically aren't familiar with the Hebrew Scriptures, what's referred to as the Old Testament, you might be going, I am. What's the big deal? Well, the next verse, they want to throw up rocks and hit him.

So any time you see them responding in such a way, you should ask yourself, why are they mad? And you can really learn a lot about that Bible, about the Bible like that, because you may read something and you may miss it, and then it says the Pharisees want to pick up rocks and hit him. That means something important has gone on. He's using a phrase that was used in the Hebrew Scriptures, I am that I am.

I am, yah-fay. That is the eternal, existent, self-sufficient God. He's saying he is God here.

And if you miss that, they didn't, because they're fine. Look at what Ollie said. He said, Your father's the devil. That should inflame him to pick up some rocks, but that doesn't do it. He says, you're a bunch of liars.

They're still not picking up rocks. But then he says, before Abraham was, I am, and they're grabbing for stones. That tells you something serious has been said.

This is interesting, because this leads us to a discussion that we need to take a couple of minutes to talk about. What does he mean before Abraham was, I am? What does he mean that Abraham saw his day?

What can that possibly mean? Well, don't miss this too. Jesus is claiming to be eternal. He was birthed, born of Mary, but that wasn't when he came to be. He was in heaven before that. He was in heaven after that.

Jesus is eternally existent. Now the question is, what day is he talking about? Some people believe that he's speaking of the Melchizedek in Genesis 14 and talks about it in Hebrews 5 to 7. Could be. I don't think that. It could be what we call a Christophany or an appearance of Jesus when Abraham was interceding. Remember the angel of the Lord? Could be.

I don't think so. What was I talking about? Well, do you remember the story of Abraham and Isaac? How Abraham was told to sacrifice his son? And you may have grown up in Sunday school with these stories kind of like I did and in the pictures and in the coloring sheets and stuff, you know, he's like six years old or something.

And that's very cute and that's very quaint. But with a few scriptures, I could show you he's probably about 30 years old. He was a man.

He was a man that submitted to his older father. So Abraham is taking Isaac up on the hill and I've heard the discussions. I've heard people say, how could God ask that of Abraham? This is the promised son. This is the son he's prayed for and longed for. How can God ask Abraham to do something like this with him?

Ask him to sacrifice him. And they went up on the hill and got so close before God provided a different solution. What must have Abraham been thinking and feeling? What must have father God felt when the sacrifice was carried through the day he gave us his son? What was he feeling? There's a verse Genesis chapter 22 verse eight says, and Abraham said, my son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering.

So they went both of them together. This is the King James. My son, God will provide himself a lamb for burnt offering. If you're reading the New King James, it says God will provide for himself. I suggest you mark out that word for. The reason is it's not in the original Hebrew.

It's not in there. In the original Hebrew, it says God will provide himself a lamb. See, this was a prophetic scripture speaking of what was going to happen years later.

The analogy here goes farther than you could imagine and way beyond the scope of today's teaching. But what's interesting is after this, you don't hear about Isaac anymore. As a matter of fact, you see Abraham's unnamed servant bringing gifts to the bride of Isaac, perhaps like the Holy Spirit brings the church gifts. And then the next time we see Isaac is he's coming for his bride.

Oh, there's a lot of pictures in there. But let's go back to the hill. Genesis 22 says, and he said, take now your son, thy only son, Isaac, whom you lovest and get thee into the land of Moriah and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains, which I tell thee of. So they're in the land of Moriah. The mountain they went up on was Mount Moriah. And perhaps you're sitting there going, okay, I don't see the connection, but okay, Mount Moriah.

That's what it says. Where's Mount Moriah? Guys, remember, there's never a detail that's in the Bible by circumstance or happenstance or just filler material.

It always means something. See, we're actually told where Mount Moriah is in 2 Chronicles 3 verse 1. It says, Now Solomon began to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah where the Lord appeared to his father David at the place David had prepared on the threshing floor of Onan the Jebusite. Mount Moriah was in Jerusalem.

Let me go one step further. There's two different beliefs about where the cross was placed. The first is the church of the Holy Sepulchre, which many people have fought over in a couple of denominations kind of have split it in half and they operate there. I don't think that's the place.

There's a lot of reasons, but I won't get them to them this morning. I don't think that's the place. I think it's the place that's outside the city. This place that's outside the city that before they excavated and built the city was the top of this ridge. I believe that's the place. It's referred to as Gordon's Calvary, but for a lot of reasons, I think this is the place. It's the tip of Mount Moriah, 777 meters above sea level.

Interesting number in it. That day, just as Isaac placed the wood on his back to carry it up the hill for his sacrifice, many years later, Jesus put the wood on his back to carry it up the hill for the sacrifice. The Bible's all connected.

We talk about that a lot here. Jesus is claiming to be deity. I believe he's speaking of that day where he rescued Isaac at a great price.

He desires to rescue all of us. Verse 59 says, then they took up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple going through the midst of them and so passed by. Don't miss the fact that Jesus is saying, I am God.

I am eternally existent. That's why they wanted to stone him. He had been saying confrontive things the whole time, but at this point, to their mind, he's crossed the line from confronting them and their evil into what they would term blasphemy, claiming to be God. I believe his claim was a righteous one. Do you understand we all deserve to be in that place where Isaac was that day to give our lives as a sacrifice because we've sinned. Do you understand earlier in this chapter talking about the adulterous woman standing guilty, her guilt open, her shame open in front of everybody, deserving to be stoned?

That's you and I. That's what we deserve, but Jesus is willing to take our place. He's willing to die for us. The question is, will you accept the sacrifice or will you reject it? How can you reject so great an offer? How can you walk away from that? See, Jesus reaches out to you this morning beyond time and space and says, you know what?

The offer still stands. I'll die in your place. And what will be your response? What was Abraham feeling that day when he was offering Isaac his son? I can't imagine. Much less can I imagine what Father God felt the day he gave us his son. What was he feeling? I'm clueless there, but probably a better question is, what would he feel if this morning you turned your back on the offer, rejected him and walked out of here? I can't imagine, but that is the question. How does he feel when we reject that sacrifice? How does he feel when we pick up the chains and try them on again? How does he feel when he's fifth, sixth, seventh, 28th on the list of important things in our lives?

Friends, it shouldn't be. Jesus has provided the opportunity for freedom. All of us have that opportunity. And maybe you've never responded to Jesus. Maybe you've never asked him to forgive you of your sins. This morning, you have that opportunity. Friend, do you know for sure that your sins have been forgiven?

You can know right now. I want to lead you in a short, simple prayer, simply telling God you're sorry and asking him to help you to live for him. Now, God wants you to pray this prayer so much that he died to give you the opportunity and the ability to ask him to forgive you.

Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now. Dear Jesus, I believe you died for me, that I could be forgiven. And I believe you were raised from the dead, that I could have a new life. And I've done wrong things. I have sinned. And I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things.

Please give me the power to live for you all of my days. In Jesus' name, amen. Friend, if you prayed that prayer, according to the Bible, you've been forgiven. You've been born again. Jesus said he would not turn anybody away who comes to him. And he came for those people who knew they needed forgiveness, those who were sick, not the righteous. So congratulations, friend.

You just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you. If you prayed that prayer with David for the first time, we'd love to hear from you. You can visit to receive our First Steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ. Or you can write to Cross the Bridge at PO Box 12515, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 27117, and share how God is working in your life. Well, DA, before we go, what are some ways that we can bless our listeners? Each day you can wake up with encouragement from Pastor David through the Word of God with his email devotional, life lessons to consider, a daily reading plan, and a thought to meditate on throughout your day from the heart of David McGee. That sounds good, Pastor DA.

And again, it's been great to have you with us on the program today. But tell us, what else can our listeners find on If you're not able to make it to your home church this Sunday, why not join us for our live stream at 10 a.m. Eastern Time or on Thursday nights at 7 p.m. Eastern Time? Just visit and click on our live stream link. There, you'll experience a live service from David's home church, The Bridge, in North Carolina. Again, that website is Thanks again for listening, and join us next time as David McGee continues teaching verse by verse in the Gospel of John.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-21 17:23:26 / 2024-01-21 17:33:42 / 10

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