Today’s Reading: John 8:48-59
“I assure you: If anyone keeps My word, he will never see death-ever!”
As followers of Jesus Christ, we have the blessed hope of eternal life through Him. “I assure you,” says Jesus, “If anyone keeps My word, he will never see death – ever!” This is a promise that only Jesus can keep. We know that Jesus can keep His promise to us because of what He reveals to us in His dialogue with the religious leaders.
Jesus is the Son of God. He says, “My Father – you say about Him, ‘He is our God’ – He is the One Who glorifies Me…I do know Him, and I keep His word.” During Bible times, a man’s son was not only his heir, but also an extension of himself in many ways. The son not only had the wealth and status of his father, but in many cases, also carried the authority of his father, even for legal matters. Jesus tells us that His Father glorifies Him. The God Who alone deserves all glory shares this glory with His Son. Jesus as the Son of God carries the authority of God His Father over all things, including death. Jesus can promise to keep people from death because He has the authority to do so.
Jesus is God the Son. Jesus is not only the Son of God, but He is also God Himself. He tells the religious leaders that He not only has the authority of Father, but also reveals to them, “I assure you: before Abraham was, I AM.” Jesus says that He is the Great I AM, referring to the Holy Name of God which God revealed to Moses at the burning bush. This point is confirmed in that the religious leaders completely understand what Jesus is saying. They are so incensed by this statement that they pick up stones to throw at Jesus. They believe that His statement is blasphemy. But what Jesus says is true. Not only is Jesus like His Father, but He is one with God the Father. As God, Jesus not only has the authority of death, but the power over it as well. He can promise to keep people from death because He has the power to do so.
An incredible promise like the one made by Jesus can only be made by Jesus. We can trust in what He because of Who He is: the Son of God, and God the Son. His promises are good and true because they are backed by His authority, His power, and His Identity. All glory be to God!
Father, I praise You that You’ve sent Your Son Jesus for me. I praise You for the promise of eternity You’ve kept in Him. Thank You for Your faithfulness and Your Grace. Help me to keep Your word, Lord, that I might cling tightly to the assurance of Your Promise found in Jesus Christ, my Lord, in all situations. Help me to trust in You completely. In Jesus’ Precious Name I pray, AMEN.
Thru the Bible in a year (credit: Biblestudytools.com): John 8:48-59; 2 Chronicles 5:2-14; Malachi 2:10-4:7