The Humanity of Jesus! John 4:1-6

Text:  “Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself (the resurrected Christ Jesus); handle Me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see Me have.”
                                                                                                           Luke 24:39.

          “Wherefore when He (Christ Jesus) cometh into the world, He saith, Sacrifice and offering Thou wouldst not, but a Body hast Thou prepared Me…by the which…we are sanctified through the offering of the Body of Jesus Christ once for all.”
                                                                                                 Hebrews 10:5-12.

Good morning, believing Christian!  You have been given God’s gift of true believing faith, thus you exercise this great gift daily when studying the Scriptures, and digest God’s truth concerning the Lord Jesus Christ.  Praise God, you do well, true Christian friend.

“For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”  (Romans 1:17) (Habakkuk 2:4)

The Humanity of Christ:  The humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ is the doctrine that declares that the Lord Jesus had a true human body and a reasonable human soul. 

He is called ‘…the seed of the woman…’ (Genesis 3:15)

He was ‘…the seed of David…’  (Romans 1:3)

He was called a ‘…man…’  (1 Timothy 2:5)

One of His titles is ‘…the Son of Man…’  (Matthew 13:37)

Yet, sadly not all who read about the Lord Jesus believe in His true humanity!  Of course, not all have been given God’s gift of believing faith!

“He had a true human body.  This was plainly laid down by the inspired apostles in opposition to some Gnostics, the Docetae, who held that the body of Christ was merely a phantom and not real flesh and blood.  Matthew 24:39; John 20:27, and many other Scriptures destroy such  a myth.

“He had a reasonable soul.  This contradicts the ancient heresy of Apollinariansim.  (See Matthew 26:38; Mark 6:6; Matthew 8:10; Luke 7:9)

“Sorrow and wonder are rational emotions, proper to man, but not to God.”  (Shedd)  I.e., they are positive proof that the Lord Jesus had a true human soul.”  (Dictionary of Theological Terms by Alan Cairns page 179, published by Ambassador Productions, Ltd)

Bible scholars like thee and me who have been graciously granted God’s gift of genuine Christian faith, have only to read verse six of today’s selected Journey in John’s Gospel to fully accept the truth of Christ’s humanity.  We don’t need to be accomplished theologians, nor highly educated theological professors to know for certain the Divine truths we read. Praise God it is so!

God’s Word says it - we accept it as His truth.  Amen - it is truth, Lord God!  (John 17:17)

“Now Jacob’s well was there.  Jesus therefore, being wearied with His journey, sat thus on the well; and it was about the sixth hour.”  (John 4:6)

Would the Almighty Lord God in His Divinity alone be ‘…wearied…’ with such a puny journey?  Would He Who Created the universe, the earth, and all Creation in a mere six days allow a journey from Judaea to Galilee to sap His omnipotent strength?  I think not. 

It was the human nature of Christ Jesus that felt the exact same weariness that you and I would feel in the circumstances.  We have been redeemed by the God-man - Jesus Christ - Who can relate and sympathise with every human feeling and failing we have for, in His incarnation, He was truly human as well as truly Divine.  Glory to His altogether lovely Name!

“For we have not an High Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.  Let us therefore (knowing the humanity of Christ Jesus) come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”  (Hebrews 4:15-16) (John 14:18)

Jesus thirsted; Jesus hungered; Jesus grew weary; Jesus wept; Jesus rejoiced; Jesus was tempted more than any man; Jesus suffered infinite sufferings - praise God, He suffered for you and for me!  Can anyone doubt therefore, the true humanity of our beloved Saviour, Christ Jesus?  Even the devils believe and tremble in fear.  Glory to the God-man, Jesus the risen Christ!

Thought: God became man that man might become as God - hallelujah!

Complimentary Baptisms John 3:22-36

Text:  “After these things came Jesus and His disciples into the land of Judaea; and there He tarried with them, and baptized.  And John (the Baptist) also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there; and they (the faithful) came, and were baptized.”
                                                                                                         John 3:22-23.

Good morning, confused Christian!  You study the Scriptures of the New Testament and sometimes become slightly confused concerning the concept of Christian baptism.  Well, join the club, my friend.  Many faithful believers get similarly confused on this subject.  But God’s Word enlightens us all.

“Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”  (Psalm 119:105)

Definition of Complimentary:  completing; together making up a whole.  (Chambers Dictionary p. 336)

Our Bible passage for today shows us Christ Jesus baptising new Spiritual converts in Judaea.  At the same time, John the Baptist baptized others that were faithfully awaiting the coming of the prophesied Messiah, in Aenon, near to Salim - because there was much water there, I.e. by total immersion.

We learn from this Gospel account that the Baptisms of John were conducted by total immersion as were the Baptisms of the Lord Jesus Himself - but that is where the similarity ends. 

These two baptisms were complimentary, but entirely different in Spiritual significance.  Read on and learn why.       

The Baptism of John the Baptist: (Matthew 3:1-6)  John the Baptist was the ‘...messenger...’ of God prophesied by both Isaiah and Malachi hundreds of years prior to his appearing ‘...preaching in the wilderness...’ around the region of the river Jordan.  God teaches us:

“For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying, ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight...’”.  (Matthew 3:1-3) (Isaiah 40:1-5) (Luke 3:4-6)

John’s mission was to ‘...prepare the way...’ before Christ’s sudden coming to the Jewish Nation as their long-awaited Messiah.  (Malachi 3:1)

In John’s role as ‘...the messenger...’ of God, he brought with him a method by which sinners could show, publicly, their desire to receive the long-awaited Messiah; i.e. the people showed sincere repentance of their sins, and signified their sincere soul’s preparation, by an act of public water baptism; an outer show of commitment to later receive the Christ when He appeared in their midst.   To this end they were, baptized of John in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.

The insincere Pharisees and Sadducees  were immediately rebuked of John for not showing any signs of true soul preparation (i.e. no, ‘...fruits meet {fit} for repentance...’). (Matthew 3:7-8) 

Neither the sincere nor the insincere were SAVED at this point in time by the mere act of John’s water baptism!  Why?  Because Jesus, ‘...the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world...’ had not yet appeared unto those who were preparing for His coming by receiving John’s water baptism! Read how the Holy Spirit Himself records these facts! (John 1:25-34) (Hebrews 9:12;22)

Spiritual Baptism: (Matthew 3:11-12)  The only baptism that really counts Eternally therefore, is the Spiritual baptism that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God Himself, can ALONE grant sinners.  As John the Baptist testifies:

“I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance; but He (Christ Jesus) that cometh after me is mightier than I...He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire.”  Praise God for His grace!

All those that the Lord Jesus ‘baptized’ with the Holy Ghost were Spiritually regenerated into His Body the Church - by grace though faith - and Eternally saved.  Christ declares: ‘…nothing can pluck them out of My hand...’  Hallelujah!  We are Eternally secure!   (John 10:27-30) (Ephesians 2:8-9)

“For as the Body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one Body, being many, are one Body; so also is Christ.  For by one Spirit are we all baptized (Spiritual Baptism!) into one Body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  For the Body (Christ’s Church) is not one member, but many.” (1 Corinthians 12:12-14)          

On the other hand, all those whom Christ Jesus baptizes with ‘’ will burn in Hell for Eternity, like ‘...chaff with unquenchable fire.’  (Matthew 3:11-12)

Complimentary Baptisms:  Now, this concept of two distinct types of baptism seems very clear to me. John’s water baptism, which was to prepare the people to receive their Messiah Jesus; and Spiritual Baptism (i.e. Spiritual regeneration), which Christ Jesus alone can bring, were complimentary.

We can recognize no other Gospel and no other ‘way’ of Eternal Salvation.  We are Eternally saved by God’s grace, through His gift of faith in Christ Jesus.                

All the water in the world cannot save an immortal soul. (Galatians 1:6-12) (Acts 1:12) (Ephesians 2:8-9)

I sincerely trust that, by God’s grace, I have been able to make the Scriptural doctrine clear to all who study this lesson.  For at the end of the day, dear friend, only ONE BAPTISM will really count in Eternity.  We must be ‘...born again...’; baptised by God the Spirit, into the Body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:4-7)

Thought:  Let’s make sure that our baptism is the ONE that counts!

Saved, Or Condemned? John 3:16-17

Text:  “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish (Eternally), but have everlasting life.”
John 3:16.

Good morning, Eternally SAVED Christian!  Did the Lord God save you, but now depends on your ‘good works’ to keep you saved?  When the Lord God saved you, did He give you Eternal life, or was His gracious gift merely temporal?  When you are feeling depressed, do you doubt God’s love for you?  When you fall into sin - and all we sinners do - does God take His gift of Eternal life from us again?  Can we be given the gift of believing faith in Christ Jesus and end up condemned by our Holy Lord God of absolute wrath against sin? 

All these questions are successfully asked and answered in the verses of today’s selected Scripture as we continue Journeying With John through his account of the Gospel.  Praise God it is so!

“Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ASK for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls…”  (Jeremiah 6:16)

Only those seeking truth from God’s Word are blessed with enlightenment from Him.  If we do not ask for such Scriptural wisdom, we will never find it.  Therefore, we must learn to continually ask that we might continually receive of the Living Lord God.     (James 1:5)

Salvation:  The only real Salvation for sinful mankind is in God’s free gift of Salvation - and exclusively through the Cross of Christ Jesus.  Salvation is God’s gift to us, we cannot earn it; work our way towards it; pay for it ourselves; or do any other deed to keep the Salvation gift we are given.  Fact.

“For by grace and ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man/woman should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Eternal Salvation:  Our text today - one of the most universally well known Bible texts internationally - clearly teaches us the fact that God gives all who trust in Christ Jesus’ Sacrifice at the Cross ‘…everlasting life…’.

Arminian believers (adhering to the teachings of Joseph Arminius 1560-1609), on the other hand, set forth the idea that one can be saved by God and then eventually lost! 

The ‘…everlasting life…’ aspect offered by Christ in our text today is thereby - in some contradictory manner - reduced to a mere transient period!  The gift of Eternal (or ‘…everlasting…’) life offered by the Living Lord Jesus is demoted to something that is much less than a free gift of God’s grace; more of a conditional hint that we might have everlasting life, but only as we are humanly able to keep ourselves in a ‘…state of continuing grace…’!  What nonsense!

We are saved and kept by the power of God, or we are not saved and kept at all!

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in Heaven for you, who are KEPT by the power of God through faith unto Salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”  (1 Peter 1:3-5)  Hallelujah!  Saved and kept by the Lord!

Saved Or Condemned?: (V.18)  Verse 18 of our Bible passage for today is startling in its clarity and precision of understanding.  Whosoever believeth (I.e.  trusts and keeps on trusting) on Him (Christ Jesus and His Sacrifice at Calvary’s Cross) is NOT condemned. 

Whosoever does NOT believe, does not trust and keep right on trusting completely on Christ and His finished work of Redemption on the Cross, is condemned already!  Why?  Because he/she does not believe in the Name of the only begotten Son of God, Christ Jesus.  What Divine clarity!

Light Or Darkness?:  (Vs.19-20)  Why is so much evil done in the darkness?  Because mankind since the Fall of Adam/Eve in the Garden have tried to hide our evil deeds from the light of God’s Presence. (Genesis 3:7-8)

When we are given faith to believe the truth of the Gospel of Salvation in Christ alone, we immediately come to the Light; confess our sins; and repent from them.  We ask the Lord God to help us not to sin against Him any more - and come promptly to Him in progressive confession when we do, in order to be cleansed from all sin and renewed to full fellowship with Him again.

If this is your personal experience, dear friend, then rejoice.  For the Lord God has taken you and I from the darkness and taught us to love the Light.

Thought:  Is your Salvation experience Eternally secure in the Blood?