|John 5 |
1 After this there was a feast of the Jews; and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
2 Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches.
3 In these lay a great multitude of disabled sick people: the blind, lame, and withered, waiting for the moving of the water.
4 For an angel would go down at a certain times into the pool, to stir the water; and after the stirring of the water, whoever was first to step in the water was cured of whatever disease he had.
5 A certain man was there who had suffered a disability for thirty eight years.
6 And when Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been there a long time in that condition, he said to him, "Do you wish to be made whole?" [Note! Jesus went to one man only out of many wanting to be healed. How did he know which one to heal? Because the Spirit of the Father told Him, as Jesus explains to us in verse 19 below: Truly, truly, I say to you; the Son can do nothing of himself, (by his own will), but only does what he sees the Father do. Before we can do anything for God, we too must be able to do only as we are told and shown to do immediately before speaking or working for Him; anything we say or do for God, without His specific, clear instructions is a dead work done from our carnal mind and shows that we are seeking our own glory, not God's. John 7:18. Whatever you have done, (witnessing, teaching, preaching), without God's specific directions incurs condemnation on yourself; and in judgment, you will be questioned: "Who has required this at your hands?"]
7 And the disabled man answered him, "Sir, I have no servant to put me into the pool when the water has been stirred; and when I try to get there, another always steps in before me."
8 Then Jesus said to him, "Rise, take up your bed, and walk."
9 And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked. This occurred on the same day as the Sabbath.
10 The Jews therefore said to the man who had been cured, "It is the Sabbath day; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed."
11 He answered them, "He who made me whole, he said to me, 'Take up your bed, and walk.'"
12 Then they asked him, "Which man said to you, 'Take up your bed, and walk?'"
13 But he who had been healed, did not know who it was because Jesus had disappeared into the crowd in that place.
14 Afterwards Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, "Behold, you are made whole; sin no more for fear that something worse may happen to you."1 [Something worse is Hell. Jesus forgives our past sins, providing we are seeking His help to stop sinning altogether and to even have our desires to sin destroyed. He gives us serious warnings about continuing to sin; He tell us to sin no more; so He obviously has provided a way to comply, which is the inward cross of self-denial.]
15 So the man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, who had made him whole.
16 Therefore the Jews persecuted Jesus and sought to kill him because he had done these things on the Sabbath day.
17 But Jesus answered them, "My Father has worked to this time, and I now work."
18 Therefore the Jews sought even more to kill him, because he had not only broken the Sabbath, but had said that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
19 Then Jesus answered them and said, "Truly, truly, I say to you; the Son can do nothing of himself [by his own will], but only does what he sees the Father do. For whatever things he [the Father] does, these are also likewise done by the Son.2 [Jesus did nothing in his will, only by the Father's will; this is what it means when you pray: thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. All true sons do nothing of themselves, only what they are told to say and shown what to do. We have to learn from Him and be changed by Him to be able to only do the Father's will on earth, the same as the Father's will is done in heaven by the angels.]
20 For the Father loves the Son, and shows him all things that he himself does; and he will show him greater works than these, so that you may marvel.
21 For as the Father raises up the dead, and brings them to life; even so the Son brings to life whom he will.
22 For the Father judges no man, but has committed all judgment to the Son,
23 So that all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son, does not honor the Father who has sent him [the Son]. [From the Word of the Lord within: "When you honor the Son, you honor me."]
24 Truly, truly, I say to you, 'He who hears my word, and believes in [depends on, trusts, obeys] him who sent me, has eternal life, and shall not come into condemnation; but has passed [past tense] over from death to life.'3 [There is a voice of the Lord like thunder over the waters described in many Old Testament passages. This is radically different than the small still voice we hear from within our hearts or from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit and the Word of the Lord within speak with words from Jesus, so we are hearing from the Son of God. But until we can truly hear the Voice of the Lord, we will not know for sure it is the Lord speaking to us. From the Word of the Lord within: "You will always have doubts until you hear His voice. My voice is like thunder over waters." You will hear His voice for the first time at final judgment, and you will then know His voice; when you hear His voice like thunder over waters for the first time, you have passed over from death to life.
This is the life that Adam lost in his fall in the garden, when he was cut off from the tree of life; men then became dead to the life of God. And when you pass from death to life, you enter paradise to once again eat from the tree of life, being translated into the Kingdom of Heaven while on earth to live in union with Christ and the Father. All this is to be experienced, not presumed in high notions.]
25 Truly, truly, I say to you, 'The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear shall live. [There is no one-time resurrection of the dead for all men of all ages that Christianity teaches, for as Paul wrote: "And when we were (past tense) dead in our sins, He brought (past tense) us to life in union and fellowship with Christ; it is through grace that you are saved; And has raised (past tense) us up together [with Christ], and made (past tense) us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus." Eph 2:5-6. Paul and some of the Ephesians had already been resurrected from being dead in their sins.
Because of Adam, we all are dead in our sins, dead to the life of God, Gen 2:17,3:24, having been cut off from the tree of life. To pass from death to life, we first have to listen to the Holy Spirit and the word of the Lord within to hear and obey His many teachings and commands. Then with long persistence and patience in doing obedient works of repentance, we experience the baptism of fire and death, to then hear the Voice of the Lord like thunder over waters as we pass over from death to life and into the kingdom.]
26 For as the Father has life in himself; so he has given to the Son to have life in himself;
27 And has given him authority to also execute judgment because he is the Son of man.'
28 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming, in which all who are in the graves shall hear his voice,
29 And shall come forth. Those who have done good, to the resurrection of life; and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of damnation.
30 Of my own self, I can do nothing. I judge only as I hear, [the Father's words of judgment]; and my judgment is just, because I do not seek my own will, but the will of the Father who has sent me. [Jesus did nothing in his will, only by the Father's will; this is what it means when you pray: thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. We have to learn and be changed to be able to only do the Father's will on earth, the same as the Father's will is done in heaven by the angels.]
31 If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.
32 There is another who bears witness of me; and I know that the witness that He witnesses of me is true.
33 You sent to John, and he has testified to the truth.
34 Yet I do not receive the testimony of man; but I say these things that you might be saved.
35 He [John] was a burning and a shining light; and you were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.
36 But I have a greater witness than that of John; for the works, which the Father has given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father has sent me.
37 And the Father himself, who has sent me, has testified concerning me. You have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his form.4 [You can memorize the entire Bible, but you won't know God or Jesus. Jesus has just told us the criteria of a person who knows God: they have heard his voice and seen his form. God is only known by revelation: God is only known by what you hear and see in your heart. Rom 1:19, Mat 11:27. From the word of the Lord within: "Christianity has no idea what I am or for what I stand. There are those who profess to know truth, only having knowledge of the Bible. It is no value to me to know truths and not know the Lord. Do you know him or just pretend to know him. to know him is to have met him and listened to him. Seek the meeting." True understanding of the scriptures only comes by listening to and obeying the Voice of the Lord. Listen, hear, incline your ear, give ear, heed, attend, come to me, obey — the scriptures are full of these critical advisories, and now the Christians refuse them.]
38 And you do not have his word abiding in you;5 for you do not believe him whom he has sent. [In this verse and the next verse Jesus makes a clear distinction between the word, and the scriptures. From the Word of the Lord within: "Why would He contrast them if He didn't want to distinguish them? Calling the Bible 'the word' is the most evil lie of Christendom. Woe be to them, for they have coupled an external form between the love of God to man. Ten words from Him are better than ten copied letters." Do not be confused; every reference to the word in the New Testament comes from the original Greek words, either logos or rhema, both of which refer to words spoken by a living voice. See the Word of God References (not being the Bible) for the details and links to every New Testament verse in Greek that contains the word.]
39 You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and they are those that testify of me. [From the Word of the Lord within: "He is not telling them to repeat what they are doing," but Christendom today incorrectly looks to find salvation searching the Bible's scriptures, thinking that if they believe some few verses, ignoring all the rest, they have eternal life of God; but the scriptures only point to, and testify about, Jesus. The only assurance of eternal life is to experience Jesus bring eternal life to you. You must hate your life, and you must lose your fleshly life to gain the eternal life of God, which is the full possession of Christ that rules your heart, supplying your thoughts, words, and deeds.]
40 But you will not come to me, so that you might have life.6 [Jesus has just told us in this and the above verse that studying the Bible is not coming to Him so that you might have eternal life. Come — not to sect services, not to prayer meetings, not to the Bible, not to altar calls — but come directly to him, by sitting and waiting on him in humble silence, to watch, to listen, and hear His words he speaks to you that impart the of life of God to you as His words are engrafted into your heart. John 6:63, James 1:21. Each word you hear Him speak to you increases the life of God in you; each word you hear Him speak to you purifies you a little more. With sufficient measure of His spoken words heard from within your heart, He is formed in you so that you see Him and experience Him bringing your salvation and eternal life. From the Word of the Lord within: "Obedience leads to restoration of life."]
41 I do not receive honor from men.
42 But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you.
43 I have come in my Father's name, and you have not received me. If another came in his own name, you would receive him.
44 How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that only comes from God? [From the Word of the Lord within: "Look not for the approval of men. Those who seek the honor of men will know no other."]
45 Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father; there is one who accuses you, even Moses, in whom you trust.
46 For had you believed Moses, you would have believed me; for he wrote of me.
Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
1 sin no more for fear that something worse may happen to you. Everyone talks about how Jesus is so forgiving; true, but after forgiveness he says, sin no more!
To the adulteress: Neither do I condemn you. Go, and sin no more. John 8:11
To one healed: Behold, you are made whole; sin no more for fear that something worse may happen to you. John 5:14
The something worse that may happen to you is called Hell.
Christendom doesn't have a clue how to be freed from sin, and pretends it is impossible. Christendom has forgotten the only way — the inward cross of self-denial.
But Jesus said: Sin no more! and Repent or perish! [and lose you soul].
Now many people cannot believe that Jesus meant "perfect" when he said, Be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect, Mat 5:48; but isn't Jesus saying the same thing when he says, sin no more?
2 Truly, truly, I say to you; the Son can do nothing of himself [by his own will], but only does what he sees the Father do. For whatever things he [the Father] does, these are also likewise done by the Son. Even Jesus did not judge, speak, or act without following the Father's specific orders. Jesus said:
Of my own self, I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, John 5:30
For I do not speak from myself [not my own words], but the Father, who sent me, himself commands me what I should say and what I should speak.
And I know that [to obey] his command is life everlasting. Therefore, whatever I speak is just as the Father tells me to speak. John 12:49-50
The Son is can do nothing of Himself [by his own will],
but only does what he sees the Father do. John 5:19
He who speaks from himself [speaking his own words] seeks his own glory, but he who seeks the glory of the One who sent him, that man is true, and there is no unrighteousness in him. John 7:18
The Master sees everything to do and hears everything to say before speaking. Christ said: "The disciple is not above his master, but everyone who is perfect [purified, restored to the spiritual image of God, specifically authorized, and perfected] will be like his master." Luke 6:40. Those that speak and/or work for God without being specifically ordered in each and every word and action, are essentially claiming their own words and deeds are superior to what Jesus' might have been if he had made his own decisions about what to say and do. Anyone not having been specifically sent by God and speaking without God providing his words to speak, is a blind guide seeking his own glory, your money, and your admiration of him.
The preachers of Christendom stand condemned for seeking their own glory and then accepting pay for their worthless words; when to even charge for true words of life like Balaam, spoken from the spirit of God, is expressly forbidden by Peter, Paul, and Jesus. Seeking their own glory, the preachers of Christendom speak their vain opinions from their carnal minds, the nature of death, and from the imagination from their evil hearts.
3 He who hears my word, and believes in [depends on, trusts, obeys] him who sent me, has eternal life, and shall not come into condemnation; but has passed [past tense] over from death to life. Note, how this verse could be grossly misinterpreted to mean if you have heard someone read the Bible and you believe in who sent Jesus, the Father, then you have eternal life; misinterpreted to mean that even belief in Jesus in unnecessary — just believe that God sent Jesus — just believe in God. But of course that is not what this verse means at all: my word is not the Bible; my word is the word of faith that is in your heart and mouth so you may hear and obey it; and Jesus himself is that word of God, or Word of Christ, in your heart to be obeyed, which words Jesus speaks within your heart all originate from the Spirit of God. He who is of God, hears God's words...John 8:47. My sheep hear my voice. Everyone of the truth hears my voice. John 10:27,18:37. All your holy ones are in your power. And they sit at your feet, each receiving your words. Deu 33:3.
William Dewsbury, who entered the Kingdom, wrote of an entirely different level of hearing that occurred after he had been crucified on the inward cross of self-denial:
I stand here as a witness for the God of heaven,
I never heard the voice of Christ
until I was slain and baptized, and lay as a little child under his heavenly chastisements;
as soon as ever my soul was brought to this, in my humiliation,
Oh! then, the dreadful judgment was taken away, and the book of life was opened unto me,
and the Lord spoke comfortably to me, 'I have loved you with an everlasting love;"
and I was made a Christian through a day of vengeance, and of burning as an oven;
and the haughtiness and pride of man in me was brought low.
(Dewsbury had just experienced the baptism of fire and death to pass over from death to life as he heard the Voice of the Lord for the first time.)
There is a voice of the Lord like thunder over the waters described in many Old Testament passages. This is radically different than the small still voice we hear from within our hearts or from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit and the Word of the Lord within speak with words from Jesus, so we are hearing from the Son of God. But until we can truly hear the Voice of the Lord, we will not know for sure it is the Lord speaking to us. From the Word of the Lord within: "You will always have doubts until you hear His voice. My voice is like thunder over waters." You will hear His voice for the first time at final judgment, and you will then know His voice; when you hear His voice for the first time, you have passed over from death to life.
We first have to listen to the Holy Spirit and the word of the Lord within to hear and obey His many teachings and commands. Then with long persistence and patience in doing obedient works of repentance, we experience the baptism of fire and death, to then hear the Voice of the Lord as we pass from death to life. Until then, we have to be on our guard to not be deceived by the enemy, pretending to be the Lord speaking to us. Based on the advice of Edward Burrough, (click to read), a giant in the early Quakers, until we can distinguish between the voice of the Lord and the voice of the enemy, we should do nothing for the Lord but repent. When we can hear the Voice of the Lord, we walk in the light; and William Penn wrote, "Though it is the duty of all to walk in the light, and to wait for it, that by it they may be instructed in the way of life and salvation, yet it is they only who are actually led by it, that can rightly discern between the false spirits and the true."
* By way of review: to be guided or led by the light, the light must first arise in your heart like a magnificent star, so that you are shown everything to do and told everything to say; the unmistakable arising of the light comes from faith in the voice.
When we can hear the voice of the Lord that is like thunder over the waters, we truly experience the fulfillment of the scriptures:
After final judgment "the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out."John 10:3
He leads them out of their slavery to sin, John 8:31-32, out of the world into the kingdom, to walk in the light, John 8:12.
"And when he has brought out his own sheep, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him; for they know his voice." John 10:4
To be brought out is to be led out of the world into the kingdom, then to be guided by the Lord's commands for your every word and every deed.
"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me [they obey]." John 10:27
These are very advanced believers whom Jesus has raised to heaven and within whom He dwells,
as they still walk the earth too. He guides them with His voice for all their words to speak
and all their deeds to be done, bringing honor and glory to God.
"They will not follow a stranger, but will flee from him; for they do not know the voice of strangers." John 10:5
Once in the kingdom, you know his voice and you are able to reject the wicked one's attempts to impersonate his voice.
"And I give eternal life to them, so that they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." John 10:28
"My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." John 10:29
His sheep have been translated into the kingdom and are born again, and so His sheep do not sin and are protected from evil.
"We know that whoever is born of God does not sin;
instead God protects the one he has fathered, and the wicked one does not touch him." 1 John 5:18.
"I know my sheep, as I am known by my sheep; Just like the Father knows me, and I know the Father." John 10:14-15
Jesus and his sheep know each other just as deeply as the Father and Jesus know each other.
Jesus and the Father know each other deeply because Jesus is one with the Father.
For His sheep to be known just like the Father and He know each other, His sheep are in Him and He is in His sheep.
The sheep are in union with and one with Christ and the Father too, as John 17:20-23, 14:20 state.
Truly, truly, I say to you, 'He who hears my word, and believes in [depends on, trusts, obeys] him who sent me, has eternal life, and shall not come into condemnation; but has passed [past tense] over from death to life.'
Truly, truly, I say to you, 'The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear shall live." John 5:24-25
This occurs just before you enter the kingdom; see The Kingdom, the Return of Christ, and Salvation's Completion in How to Benefit from the Changing Power of God by Waiting on the Lord for more on entering the kingdom.
Early in George Fox's seeking of the Lord, he received a teaching from the Lord about true believers, referencing this exact scripture:
it was said that "all christians are believers, both Protestants and Papists;" The Lord opened to me that if all were believers, then they were all born of God, and had passed from death to life; and that none were true believers unless that had happened; and though others said they were believers, yet they were not.
To be born again is not to be presumed; it is to experience dying on the cross, being buried with Christ, and then being raised with Christ into the heavens. Again, quoting George Fox:
You must have fellowship with Christ in his sufferings. 1 Pet 4:12-13
If you will reign with him, you must suffer with him. 2 Tim 2:12
if you will live with him, you must die with him. 2 Tim 2:11 (there must be a "dying daily.")
And if you die with him, you must be buried with him, Rom 6:4
and being buried with him in the true baptism, you also rise with him. Col 2:12
In 1 John 5, John carefully defines what are the qualifying experiences of a believer who is born of God, which are summarized here:
Those who say that they are born-again Christians still living in the fleshly lusts and pleasures of the world, and so still slaves to sin, are maligning the truth and create confusion.
From the Word of the Lord within:
To pass from death to life [the life of God] is not to be presumed, is is to be experienced while on earth. From the Word of the Lord within: "The new life is as radically different as a man who has lived underground his whole life, suddenly coming above ground to see the sun, the sky, the plants, the animals, the wind, the stars." To pass from death, (which Adam brought on all men, when he fell to Satan), to life, is to be restored to the life of God and enter the paradise from which Adam was expelled.
4 You have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his form. Jesus has just told us the criteria of a person who knows God: they have heard his voice and seen his form. The only form available to be seen is Jesus in his heavenly glory; the brightness of His, (God the Father's), glory, and the express image of the Father, the image of the invisible God; but Jesus was humble and did not say "you have never heard my heavenly voice, nor my seen heavenly form."
You can memorize the entire Bible, but you won't know God or Jesus. God is only known by revelation: God is only known by what you hear and see in your heart. Rom 1:19, Mat 11:27. From the word of the Lord within: "Christianity has no idea what I am or for what I stand. Do you know him or just pretend to know him; to know him is to have met him and listened to him. There are those who profess to know truth, only having knowledge of the Bible. It is no value to me to know truths and not know the Lord. Seek the meeting." The Lord told the Jews that they must heed and listen to the voice of the Lord to receive his blessings and be able to do the commandments, and then He severely warned them that if they did not heed and listen to the voice of the Lord their God, they would suffer horrible curses; they not only suffered those horrible curses many times, they persecuted Jesus and his Apostles because they had no true understanding of the scriptures, which understanding only comes by listening to and obeying the Voice of the Lord. Listen, hear, incline your ear, give ear, heed, attend, come to me, obey — the scriptures are full of these critical advisories, and now the Christians refuse them.
You must hear his voice and obey what he commands you, doing his will, not yours; this results in cleansing of your heart from sin and receiving the life of God in sin's place; then after you are cleansed to become pure, you see God. Only the pure will live in the kingdom of God; the impure will have no part in the kingdom of God or Christ.
5 you do have not his word abiding in you; Because the Jews had not been listening to the Word of the Lord within their hearts, they did not have his word abiding in their hearts with power. Each time you listen, hear, and obey, the Lord writes his words in the flesh of your heart; which is the engrafted word, which is able to save your soul. James 1:21. The more you hear, the more the word abides in you; the more it abides in you, the more it controls you — the more you are doing his will, not yours. The more you hear and see revealed in your heart by the Word in your heart, the more you understand the things of God.
You can read the Bible until you have it totally memorized, but the word, (which is a living voice), will not be abiding in you.
In this verse 38 and the next verse 39, Jesus makes a clear distinction between the word, and the scriptures.
The Greek for word in this (click to see) verse 38 is logon (from logos) <3056>: which means 1) of speech; 1a) a word, uttered by a living voice, embodies a conception or idea; 1b) what someone has said.
Just to be clear, the Greek for scripture in the next (click to see) verse 39 is grafav (from graphe) <1124>, which means 1) a writing, thing written; 2) the Scripture, used to denote either the book itself, or its contents; 3) a certain portion or section of the Holy Scripture.
There are clear differences in the Greek words for both, which shows no possibility of misinterpretation.
From the Word of the Lord within:
Why is calling the Bible "the word" the most evil lie in Christendom?—because then people read "Blessed are those who hear the Word of God and obey, Luke 11:28;" thinking it means to read the Bible instead of quietly listening for God to speak His words to them. Christendom has put a book between God and man, separating man from God's love, creating a form of godliness with no power, as He said: "Woe be to them for they have coupled an external form between God and man."
From the Word of the Lord within:
Why are ten words from Him, (that you hear Him speak to you), better that reading ten of the New Testament letters? Because His words that you hear Him speak to you impart the life of God to your heart, John 6:63; but reading ten letters is just a work of the flesh, which profits nothing; in fact most people read the letters of the New Testament and think they are addressed to them, when in fact most were addressed to very advanced believers who had attained the first stage of perfection. Reading the Bible is valuable for understanding what is sin and for maintaining your hope in the true gospel; however, to be of value, your hope must be in the true gospel and the benefit of bearing the cross to realize those promises.
6 You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and they are those that testify of me. But you will not come to me, so that you might have life. Jesus has just told us that studying the Bible is not coming to Him so that you might have life. From the Word of the Lord within: "Studying the Bible is a work of flesh." It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life-giving. John 6:63.
Sadly, this verse was mistranslated by the King James Version to read, (and still does read the same): "Search the scriptures...," and so millions of people have been completely misled to believe that the Lord commanded them to search the scriptures when instead He is telling the scripture scholars, (the only ones who had scriptures at that time), that they could not obtain eternal life searching the scriptures; they studied the scriptures, but they would not come to Him to obtain eternal life, (which only comes by "coming to Him," the one thing needed: to sit in humble silence to wait on God, listening for His spoken words and watching for His revelations, and then obeying whatever they hear and see). Despite most all other Bibles having translated these verses correctly. (click to see), there are still people today who think the King James Version is right and all others are wrong; when in fact there were so many errors in the early translations of the King James Version, it was a major scandal.
From the Word of the Lord within: "He is not telling them to repeat what they are doing." Clearly, Jesus is correcting them, saying that in searching the scriptures: 1) they incorrectly think eternal life is in the scriptures available to possess with sufficient searching, 2) doing so does not lead to eternal life, and 3) doing so is in lieu of coming to Him to receive eternal life. Yet so strong is the Protestant's false belief that the Bible is their judge, the gospel, their source of faith, their rule of life, the word, the ground, the pillar, and their law, that several translations, (translated by men with a Babylonish spirit), have a footnote mentioning the possibility of this clause being a command rather than criticism; to make that conclusion requires one to take this clause, (you search the scriptures), and ignore its context with even the rest of its verse, (as well as ignoring its context with adjacent verses), and that is stooping very low to support Christianity's terrible advice to study the scriptures in order to grow spiritually. Spiritual growth can only occur in proportion to the destruction of the selfish, sinful nature in man; and that destruction only occurs by carrying your cross and following Jesus: the inward cross of self-denial.
In Deuteronomy 30:10, the Jews had been told, in order to keep his written commandments and statutes in this book of law, they must listen to and heed the voice of the Lord; and the Lord told them the same in several other scriptures (click to see several), the below being the most detailed:
And it shall come to pass, if you will diligently listen to and heed the voice of the LORD your God to observe and to do all his commandments that I command you this day, that the LORD your God will set you on high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come on you, and overtake you, if you will listen to and heed the voice of the LORD your God. Deu 28:1-2
Click to see the blessings for listening to and heeding the voice of the Lord.
But it shall come to pass, if you will not listen to and heed the voice of the LORD your God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command you this day; that all these curses shall come upon you, and overtake you: Deu 28:15
Click to see the curses for not listening to and heeding the voice of the Lord:
And there are many other scriptures that state the penalty for not listening to and obeying the voice of the Lord, (click to see).
Studying the book, (bible), is not enough; you must listen and heed the voice of the Lord. Although the Jews heard their priests read the scriptures every Sabbath day, it was not enough for His word to be implanted in their hearts; they didn't really understand the scriptures, which they so diligently studied in hope of finding eternal life; and without the Lord teaching them the scriptures' true meaning, they then persecuted Jesus and his Apostles — all because the Jews had only studied scriptures instead of doing their best to listen to and heed the voice of the Lord. Thus the vast majority of Jews never had their evil heart to be circumcised by the Spirit so that they could turn to and love the Lord with all their heart, soul, and might; so they could become able to love their neighbor as themselves; so they could see His form and hear His voice; and so that they would not die while still sinning. Those abilities do not come by the will of man trying; those abilities only come by God circumcising your heart, which results by your persistent and patient listening to and heeding the voice of the Lord — then the love of God is perfected in your heart.
Christianity is making the same colossal mistake: studying the scriptures instead of what the New Testament also clearly states is the number one priority and the only one thing necessary:
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness... Matthew 6:33. (the number 1 priority)
And He told us how to seek Him, the one thing we needed to do:
There is only one thing needed and Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her..Mary sat at Jesus' feet and heard his [spoken] words. Luke 10:39,42 (the only one thing needed)
From the Word of the Lord within:
Hiding! Hiding from what?—Hiding from the Lord searching their hearts to expose their sins and reprove them; and when you repent in obedience, He then gives you more of His Spirit and destroys that sin. That is the hope that purifies and how to experience the grace of God, the love of God, and the growth missing in Christianity.
From the Word of the Lord within: "To know what the Bible says is wrong is worthy, all my great men knew the scriptures." However, when a man studies the Bible without spending the great majority of his time in waiting on the Lord, that man is puffing up his carnal mind, increasing his vanity, building up a "high-minded" pride," and in error feeling secure in his "progress." Studying the Bible is comfort to the flesh; but it is the opposite of carrying the cross that all must bear with endurance to ever experience seeing Jesus bring their salvation and eternal life. Whatever time you give to the reading of the Bible, you should give far more time to waiting on the Lord in humble silence; this is what the Word of the Lord within has described as being "biblically balanced."
What good did studying the scriptures do for the Jews? They had the scriptures, but they grossly misunderstood them because they were not listening to the word of God in their hearts to teach them; instead they were searching the scriptures. So in colossal error, they crucified the Holy One of Israel, just as the Christians of England and America killed, imprisoned, and seized the property of the early Quakers.
George Fox wrote of the Jew's blindness while being expert in the scriptures but lacking the Holy Spirit's teaching their true meaning of the scriptures.
For the Jews had the scriptures, yet resisted the holy ghost, and rejected Christ, the bright morning-star, and persecuted Christ and his apostles, and took upon them to try their doctrines by the scriptures, but erred in judgment, and did not try them aright, because they tried them without the holy ghost.
The Christians of America and England were also diligently searching the scriptures, but they too were not listening to God; and so the Christians, (being wolves in sheep's clothing), imprisoned and killed many early Quakers that had the Spirit of Christ risen in them to govern their words and deeds; but as it was then, he who was born after the flesh persecuted him who was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Gal 4:29. Yes, the time is coming when whoever kills you will think that he is doing a service to God. John 16:2. The Christians of England and America in killing the early Quakers, callously cast behind their backs Jesus' commands to love our enemies, to pray for our enemies, and to turn the other check; and to even think about killing those outside our faith is from the Spirit of Satan! Did searching the scriptures make them better Christians?
All the Protestant and Catholic sects that killed, (or even approved of killing), those with a different religious opinion were very different from real Christians; in even considering murder, they were following and yielding to their father the devil, who was the murderer from the beginning.
In these two verses, Jesus is not happy: You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life;
But you will not come to me, so that you might have life. John 5:39-40
He is telling people that they substitute studying the Bible for coming directly to him; the Bible only testifies about him.
And they think studying the Bible assures them of eternal life, but the way to eternal life is to go directly to him.
Christians today take a few verses out of the Bible that they think guarantees them eternal life,
closing their eyes and ears to the Bible's many exclusions, requirements, and qualifying conditions of salvation;
and they study the Bible instead of coming to Jesus to receive eternal life.
Come — not to sect services, not to prayer meetings, not to altar calls — but directly to him: waiting on him in humble silence, listening for him to speak his voiced commands and teachings.
The words we hear from the Spirit are words that are life-giving, not the words we read or hear read from the Bible.
Even though the Bible has many truths within, the Bible is not truth. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
The Bible only testifies to the way, the truth, and the Life.
I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth. John 15:26. The Holy Spirit will teach you all things. John 14:26
If we want the way, or truth, or life; we have to go to him.
He wants us to seek Him, not seek knowledge about him from the Bible.
From the Word of the Lord within: "Studying the Bible is like studying the Law."
We have made learning scriptures a rival to learning directly from God by Coming to Him.
But scriptures are not wrong; it is the way we idolize scriptures that is wrong.
Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am meek and lowly in heart, and [then] you will find rest for your souls. Matt 11:28-29
Whoever comes to me, and listens to my spoken words and does [practices, obeys] them.. is like a man who built his house on a rock. Luke 6:47-8
You have neither heard his voice at any time nor seen his form.
And you do not have his word abiding in you; for you do not believe him whom he has sent.
(They would have recognized Jesus if they would have heard the Father's voice and would have had the Father's word in them.)
You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and they are those that testify of me.
(You read the Bible for verses you think assure you of eternal life, and the verses point to Jesus.)
But you are not willing to come to me, that you might have life. John 5:37-40
Eternal life is only found by coming to Jesus, listening, hearing and obeying — not reading scriptures.
Notice Jesus also clearly states a difference between the word and scriptures, (the bible).
And the Word that abides, (lives), in you is clearly better than scriptures.
Paul said, The word is near you, even in your mouth, and in your heart, [so you may hear and obey it],
that is the word of faith, which we preach. Rom 10:8, Deu 30:14
You must have faith in the word that is in your heart and mouth, not the words in the Bible.
Clearly, the Bible is not in our heart and mouth; it is the spirit of God, the Word of God.
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God [from within your heart]. Rom 10:17
The Word of God is Spirit: Spirit of God, or Holy Spirit, or Spirit of Christ within each of us, where it lives or abides.
Only words heard from the Spirit impart life: It is the Spirit who gives life.. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life-giving. John 6:63
7 The Jews said they believed Moses; but because they failed to obey his writings, Jesus said they didn't believe Moses. Christians today are just like the Jews, who had the scriptures and believed Moses, but failed to hear, see, and obey what he commanded. Christians believe in Jesus, but don't believe Jesus; they don't heed what he said, or practice his teachings, or obey his commands. Do you believe Jesus enough to be obedient to his commands and advice; or are you like the demons, who believe him to be the Son of God raised from the dead, fear him, tremble, but do not obey him out of love? John tells us who really believes that Jesus in the Son of God: he who has overcome the world, by fighting the good fight of faith, to victory over sin. He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself ... He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. John 5:10,12. To have the Son, is to possess the Son and Father in your heart, in sufficient measure to be your true Lord in control of your thoughts, words, and deeds; they only come into your heart in full measure if you obey them. Believing is not salvation, as Paul and Peter repeatedly emphasize, writing to churches of believers:
Previous Chapter | Next Chapter