Friday, December 21, 2018

2018.12.21 Hopewell @Home ▫ John 6:60-71

Questions for Littles: Whose disciples said that His sayings were hard and difficult to understand (v60)? What does Jesus suggest, in v62, would be even more difficult for them to accept? Who gives life (v63)? How much does the flesh profit? Whose words give both the Spirit and life? What does Jesus say some of His hearers do not do (v64)? Who knew from the beginning who did believe and who did not believe? What else did Jesus know? What does Jesus say is the only thing that makes someone able to come to Him (v65)? What many of Jesus’s disciples do from that time (v66)? To whom does Jesus speak in v67? What does He ask them? Who answers in v68? What is the first reason that Peter gives for refusing to leave Jesus? What is the second reason that Peter gives for refusing to leave Jesus (v69)? How does Jesus answer Peter in v70? Whom was Jesus calling a devil? What would Judas end up doing? 
In the Gospel reading this week, we have a familiar passage with a shocking twist that you might not have noticed before. Jesus drives away the crowds, but the twelve remain with Him. When Jesus asks them if they want to go, Peter says that they refuse to leave Him because (a) He has the words of eternal life, and (b) they have come to believe and to know that He is the Christ, the Son of the living God.

The shocking twist is how Jesus responds to this statement, “Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?” Wow—what an odd response to Peter’s beautiful confession!

Jesus is underlining the point that He had made back in v63-65. A group of people can hear the very same life-giving words, and some of them believe, while some of them do not. When Peter confesses that Jesus’s words give eternal life and confesses the truth about Jesus, the Lord Jesus Himself confronts them with the fact that even someone who agrees with those truths can be lost as the devil.

Coming to Jesus is a gift that only the Father can give. It’s pretty silly that this idea bothers some people. It would only bother us if we have more confidence in ourselves to come to Jesus than in the Father to bring us to Jesus.

As it is, however, this passage teaches us not to have false confidence just because we’ve heard the right things or agreed with the right ideas. Rather, let us be urgent and earnest in asking the Lord to bless His Word to us and to our children!
Whom do you know that hears the gospel on a regular basis and when? What do you need to be praying for them (and yourself!)? 
Suggested songs: ARP23B “The Lord’s My Shepherd” or TPH425 “How Sweet and Awesome Is the Place”

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