See, very often in church services we go, yeah, if you've not believed in the Lord and trusted Him as your Savior, you have a decision to make. But you know what, guys?
Let's be real. Everybody in here has a decision to make this morning, whether you're going to follow God or whether you're not going to follow God. Maybe you woke up yesterday morning and you said, I'm going to follow the Lord. Well, guess what?
You need to do the same thing today. And Jesus waits on that decision. What will that decision be?
Life, death, light, darkness. He wants to reveal Himself to each person in here. But will you choose Him this morning? Welcome to Cross the Bridge with David McGee. David is a senior pastor of the Bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina. And we're glad to have one of David McGee's associate pastors, D.A. Brown, here with us as Pastor David continues through the book of John.
Hey, Bob. Many of us are faced with choices every day. When it comes to eternal life, Jesus lets us choose between life and death, between light and darkness. You know, D.A., that doesn't seem like much of a choice.
I mean, it's like hamburger A or hamburger B, you know, the really good tasting one or the really lousy one. Bob, people clearly know when they're standing in a position that God has not called them to be in. And when He starts to speak to you, the choice is clear.
The question is, which way do you go? So let's find out more about this important decision each of us has to make as David McGee continues in the Gospel of John. In verse 3, all things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. Interesting words there in verse 2, in the beginning.
It remind you of anything? Same three words begin the book of Genesis. Go back to verse 1, in the beginning.
Is that just a happenstance that the Gospel of John, verse 1, chapter 1 says, in the beginning. You go back to Genesis, chapter 1, verse 1, and it says, in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. I have every reason to doubt the word of evolutionist.
I have no reason to doubt the word of God, which tells me very clearly, very plainly about the origin of mankind. And if you think about it, the rejection of the biblical account of creation is genocide. It wipes out the whole human race. It wipes away our purpose. It wipes away our meaning. It wipes away the fact that we were created in the image of God. And by the way, if you're sitting there right now and you're going, well, I'm a theistic evolutionist. And what that was meant by that is theistic, meaning you believe God and you also believe evolution.
So you kind of mix the two together to get some hodgepodge. It doesn't say in the beginning, God made slime. It's not this thing of, you know, from the goo to the zoo to you. And yet so many people begin with a first verse of the Bible to doubt the word of God.
Guys, you can't do that. You know, praise God, you don't have to cut off your head to believe the Bible. As a matter of fact, it takes a lot more faith to believe in evolution.
I'm so sorry. It takes more faith to believe in that, in the creation account. You've got people with PhDs and whatnot and creation scientists that to me show beyond the shadow of a doubt that God created man. And we've come up with these long, well, you know, it just took millions and millions and millions and millions of years. You know, time doesn't even allow me to shoot all the holes I could into evolution, but you know, this watch is not that complicated. And if I took it apart and put it in a bag and shook the bag, do you think it would turn back into a watch? Well, what if I shook it a long time?
Still not going to turn into a watch in the beginning. The Bible speaks in certainty and absolute truth. And you know why? While godless people run around trying to conjure up and guess at how man came about, we have the wisdom of God saying, in the beginning, God created.
Period. We can know that. Isn't that amazing? Some of the best minds in the world are still trying to figure this out and we know.
Isn't that cool? And all the other questions too, is there life after death? What's this life about? You read your Bible, you believe your Bible, you know these things. What a gift from God. Now verse four, in him was life and the life was the light of men. These verses are so deep. These two words are used, light and life. In him, in Jesus was life and the life was the light of men. And these are great words to describe Jesus, aren't they?
Light and life. Have you ever noticed how much death goes with sin? You know, as a former rock musician, you know, there was a whole lot of death that went with the sinful nature of man.
Romans talks about that. There's just so much death that goes with sin. You can go into a bar and it's just dark and dingy and people are dying.
People are killing themselves. So there's death with sin, but have you ever noticed how much life there is in the Lord? There's a joy. There's just an awesome experience of life when you're walking with the Lord.
Maybe you're here this morning, you've been saved for a number of years, but remember, remember when you first got saved? Man, the sky was bluer. The grass was greener.
Every flower was just awesome. That was life being stirred up in you. As a matter of fact, Jesus had so much life in him that he wouldn't stay dead.
Think about that. He had so much life in him, he didn't stay dead. The prince of life. See, the Lord gives you an opportunity to experience a fullness of life, but then you contrast that to somebody that's trying to hold on to their life, trying to grab, trying to get, get, get, get, get, get. And it's kind of telling when you ask somebody, what are you doing?
I'm getting this and I'm getting that and I hope to get this, that, and the other. What are you left with after all that? Sand running through your hands.
You can't hold on to sand. That's what Jesus was talking about when he said, you know what? If you seek your life, you're going to lose it.
But if you give it away, you'll find it. And talking to people, well, what are you doing? Well, I'm going, I'm going to get an education. That's great. Getting education is good. What are you going to do then? I'm going to get me a job.
Well, that's good. What are you going to do after you get a job? I'm going to get me a house. That's good.
Get your house. Then what? I'm going to get me a wife. Well, that's a good thing.
He who finds a wife finds a good thing. What are you going to do then? I'm going to get me some kids. Well, that's a good thing.
Kids are good. What then? I don't know. Grow old. What then?
Well, one day I guess I'll die. What then? See, while the world sits here and says, get, get, get, Jesus stands to the side and says, give, give, give, and you'll discover what living for me is all about.
There's a fullness in the relationship. We've probably all seen people that, you know, they know the Lord, but they're not really walking with the Lord. I call them fence sitters. There's different names that you can pew potatoes. So we don't have pews, so we can't have pew potatoes here. But you know what I've noticed? Most people are often more miserable than people who don't know the Lord because they're not walking in that fullness of joy and they're miserable. And my heart breaks because occasionally I do see people here that fit that description and my heart breaks for them because they don't have the, you know, they're not walking in the thing of sin, but they're not experiencing the joy of the Lord. They're stuck right there in the middle and they're miserable. And friend, I hope that doesn't describe you.
If it does, you can make a change this morning. And the sad thing is a lot of damage has been done to the body of Christ by these people because there they are, they're miserable. And then what do they do? They try to witness to somebody, which is a little scary, you know? I mean, there they go, they've been baptized in vinegar or something. And then they'll go up to somebody, don't you want this joy that I got?
And you're thinking, no, I don't. Looks like you got all the joy in the world, brother. But there's a vibrancy of living for the Lord that, you know, the enemy, he wants to rip you off. He doesn't want you walking in the fullness of this joy. He doesn't want you living the abundant life, but that's what God desires to give you. Don't let the enemy keep ripping you off. There is so much more in walking with the Lord.
And when you're not walking in that surrendered life, you're going to be miserable. And I've said this before, I call them Christian Eeyores. You ever seen the Pooh movies, Winnie the Pooh and Eeyore? You remember Eeyore? Eeyore was the donkey. And things could really be going well, but old Eeyore would be, well, it's not going to work. You ever met believers like that?
I have. There was a guy when we were early on in ministry here, he was my Eeyore. And I would say, you know, we were in the old building and I'd say, well, I thought, you know, praise God, man, we're full again.
We're going to add another service. Nobody will come. Well, I think God's laying on my heart to do this. That's not the Lord. Don't be Christian Eeyores.
I'm going to get a shirt one day that has Eeyore's face in one of those circles with a slash through it. I know, I'm pretty hardcore. Praise God. But Jesus is life. Jesus wants to give us life. And He's also called light.
And light helps you see and it warms you and causes things to grow. And these are things that Jesus does to us. He helps us to see. He warms us. He causes us to grow. These aren't just words that are thrown in without the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is saying, this is Jesus' light and life. Let me ask you a question. Have you ever been in a room and tried to shut out light?
It's almost impossible. I used to be on the road, you know, in a hotel room and there's a street light right outside. And you try to do the curtains and that's not right. And you get up and you rearrange them.
Why? Because light invades darkness. Have you ever noticed that? You go into a room and you flip on the light switch. What happens to darkness? Gone like that. Where'd it go?
I don't know, but it's gone. Because darkness can't stand up to light. The presence of the light takes the darkness away.
And you can sit there and you can play with the curtains and you can go, you can cover your head with a pillow, but you're still aware that that light is there. And that's a lot like Jesus. And He's called the light of the world. He is light. He is life.
And His light is the only thing that really gives life to mankind. We'll be right back with more from David Magee on Cross the Bridge. Right now, here's a word from associate pastor D. A.
Brown. Hey, Bob, we want to take a minute to pray for some listeners in these cities. In California, we have Fort Bragg, Garberville, Grass Valley, Happy Camp, Hay Fork, Indio, and Johnstonville. God, we thank you for the people tuning in today in these cities. Lord, we pray that they're encouraged in what you're laying on their heart to do. We pray that they would put their trust in you and get plugged in a Bible teaching church. We pray for the pastors, Lord, that they would have wisdom and discernment, how to encourage the people to come to hear the Word. And, Lord, we ask you, bless these cities. In Jesus' name, amen. Amen.
Thank you, brother. And now, let's get back to David Magee as he continues teaching verse by verse. It's interesting. Life is used 36 times in the Gospel of John. And it's interesting because there's four things that you need to sustain or to promote life. One is light. The other is air, water, and food. Light, air, water, and food.
Now, there's subcategories under these four. But, you know, what's interesting is Jesus is described as these four things in the Gospel of John. The light, He is the light of the world. The air, He is the breath of life. In the water, He is the living water. The food, He is the bread of life.
He's all we need. And I like what Corrie Ten Boom said, who went through so much agony in World War II. She said, you don't know that Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you got.
Awesome, awesome sister in the Lord. She was one of the ladies portrayed in The Hiding Place. There's a part in the book, I can't remember if it's in the movie, a part in the book where the two sisters are sitting there and they're in this concentration camp and they're discussing. And Corrie is saying, you know what, it would just be so awesome to build a home after this war is over for everybody who was in the concentration camps. And the sister's going, yeah, that'd be great, that'd be great.
And, you know, we could take all these people who have suffered so much, you know, at the hands of these soldiers and we could build a home for them. And her sister turned to her and said, I was talking about the guards, light and life, light and life. And verse 5, and the light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it. See, the darkness doesn't understand Jesus Christ. It doesn't desire to understand Jesus Christ. And you know what, you can explain Jesus Christ all day long to somebody that is willfully lost and they're not going, even if they get it up here, they're not going to get it in their heart. If they don't want to understand, then they won't understand. If they do want to understand, the Lord will reveal Himself to them.
But don't miss this. The word here is probably better translated, the darkness overcame it not. The darkness could not overcome the light. Well, let's go back to the room. You go into a room, you turn on the light. What happens? The darkness is gone. Do you ever go into a room, turn on the light, and then the darkness goes, no, I'm not going to leave. I'm going to stay here. I was here first. Hopefully not.
It's gone. And somehow we've gotten the twisted notion as believers that we're trying to eke this thing out, hope we make it by the skin of our teeth. We're just holding on for dear life. That's not the Christian life. The Christian life is walking in fullness and walking in the joy of the Lord. You know, I was in Israel, most of you know that.
I was in Israel for 10 days or something. And one of the places that we went was Caesarea Philippi. There's two Caesarias in the Bible.
One is Caesarea Maritima, which is spoken of in the book of Acts. Caesarea Philippi is where Peter gave the revelation when Jesus said, who do you say that I am? And Peter said, you are God. And Jesus said, you know, Peter, you've not come upon this. God has revealed this to you. And upon this rock, upon what rock? Upon Peter?
No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Upon the rock of the knowledge that Jesus Christ is God. That's what Jesus was saying here. The Lord said upon this knowledge that I am God. I am the son of God.
I am the Messiah, the Mashiach Najid. He said upon this foundation of knowledge, I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. The gates of hell will not stand up against it.
And one of the things that's interesting as you go through Israel, you're able to see these things. And one of the things that you see at Caesarea Philippi is there is a spring, there's a hole in the ground where they used to make sacrifices. And they believed that those were actually the gates of hell.
And it was at Caesarea Philippi that Jesus said to Peter, the gates of hell will not be able to stand up against my church. Because gates are not an offensive weapon. When's the last time you saw a soldier running into battle carrying a gate?
Yeah, it don't happen. It's a defensive weapon. And the Lord is saying, you know what? It won't stand up. The gates of hell will not prevail. The gates of hell will not stand up to the power of God. And in the end, the darkness will not put out the light. The light will put out the darkness. Amen. That's the end result of what happens here on planet earth. We're not hoping to eat this out.
I'm not trying to get by with the skin of my teeth. When by nose, we will be victorious because Jesus is all powerful and will vanquish all the forces of darkness and hell to the point they don't exist anymore. Guys, that's something to get excited about. Whatever you're going through this morning, you're going through it. You're not going to stop in the middle of it. You're getting to the other side. And so often we think, well, this little thing I'm dealing with, this little trial, this little tribulation, I'm always going to live right here in this spot forever. No, you're not.
That's a lie. It's going to end as you go through it. And even if you struggle with that until the time you die, when you die, you won't struggle with that anymore. Maybe you're dealing with a physical infirmity and maybe you're waiting on the healing of the Lord. I believe firmly God supernaturally heals, but whether he heals you on this earth or he heals you as you go into heaven, let me guarantee you something. You're going to be healed. You may take scars right up to the gates, but you're not taking those scars in. Life lesson number four, Jesus lets us choose between life and death, light and darkness.
Jesus lets us choose between life and death, light and darkness. When Ashley was a little girl, she had these dolls. There was one you pull a string and the doll says, I love you. Never really did anything for me. You're probably glad to know that, right? I have it in my office now.
No, I'm kidding. That didn't have meaning to me, but when my little girl looked at me and decided to say to me, Daddy, I love you, still melts my heart. See, Jesus has given us the decision. He could have made us robots, pull the string, Lord, I love you, but he's given us a choice. He's given you a choice, life, death, light, darkness, peace with God, at war with God.
Which way you choose? And Jesus made everything. That's what these scriptures are saying. Jesus made all things.
Stop and consider that for just a moment. Jesus made the manger that he was laid in. Jesus made the water he walked upon.
Jesus picked Judas as a disciple knowing he would betray him. Jesus put Pilate in power knowing he would condemn him to an execution. Jesus grew the thorns that would be slammed down on his head. Jesus created the metal and the spear that was thrust into his side. Jesus grew the tree that he was crucified on.
He created man who crucified him. And with all this, he still gives you a choice. He still lets you decide. Jesus Christ in his mercy and in his grace is allowing you to make a choice this morning. See, very often in church services we go, yeah, if you've not believed in the Lord and trusted him as your Savior, you have a decision to make. But you know what, guys?
Let's be real. Everybody in here has a decision to make this morning. Whether you're going to follow God or whether you're not going to follow God. Maybe you woke up yesterday morning and you said, I'm going to follow the Lord. Well, guess what?
You need to do the same thing today. And Jesus waits on that decision. What will that decision be?
Life, death, light, darkness. He wants to reveal himself to each person in here. But will you choose him this morning? Perhaps you've never trusted in Jesus Christ to forgive you of your sins. Perhaps you've walked around thinking that if you're good enough or long enough that the Lord accepts that. That's not the Bible. The Bible says there's none righteous, no, not one. And we've all fallen short of the glory of God, which means your best efforts on your best days are not good enough.
They don't achieve sinless perfection and that's the standard. That's the bad news. The good news is he wants to forgive you of your sins. And all you have to do is come to him, turn from your ways to his ways, admit you're a sinner and ask him to forgive you. That's the good news. But again, every one of us this morning has a decision to make either to follow our ways or to follow his ways. I think most of us have followed our ways long enough, haven't we? 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. 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. 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 crossthebridge.com 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 crossthebridge.com? 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 crossthebridge.com 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 crossthebridge.com. Thanks again for listening, and join us next time as David McGee continues teaching verse by verse in the Gospel of John.
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