Prayer and Praise
Jesus said, “Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?” Matthew 26:40, so we start our devotional of giving God time to work in us, by praying along with this hymn… I HEARD THE VOICE OF JESUS SAY at this link…
This passage follows on from what Jesus had just said, which was that to have eternal life we must eat His flesh and drink His blood. The last two messages covered each of those in turn, so we can’t go over them again now… This passage covers the response by Jesus’ listeners to that teaching…
60 On hearing it, many of his talmidim (disciples) said, “This is a hard word — who can bear to listen to it?”
Many had not understood properly what Jesus had just said about being the bread of life that must be eaten by His disciples.
61 But Yeshua, (Jesus), aware that his talmidim (disciples), were grumbling about this, said to them, “This is a trap for you? 62 Suppose you were to see the Son of Man going back up to where he was before?
If what Jesus had just spoken was a stumbling block, then how will they react to seeing Him ascend up into heaven? They could not accept what Jesus was saying about Himself.
63 It is the Spirit who gives life, the flesh is no help. The words I have spoken to you are Spirit and life,
64 yet some among you do not trust.” (For Yeshua (Jesus), knew from the outset which ones would not trust him, also which one would betray him.)
65 “This,” he said, “is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has made it possible for him.”
Jesus had already just said in v. 43 that no one can believe unless His Father helps him. Those who are seeking, God will enable them to find Him. It is those who knock for whom the door is opened. It is by asking that we receive. We must WANT to find Him.
Jesus told Peter in the garden of Gethsemane to pray that he might not enter into temptation. Peter fell asleep instead and ended up denying Jesus. It was Peter’s weakness that led him to betray Jesus. He had previously boasted that he never would!
In contrast, what we see with Judas was that he willingly allowed Satan to enter into his heart to betray Jesus – all for 30 pieces of silver.
66 From this time on, many of his talmidim (disciples), turned back and no longer traveled around with him. 67 So Yeshua (Jesus), said to the Twelve, “Don’t you want to leave too?”
After Jesus spoke in v.41-59 about Himself being the living bread, that they must first become one with Him, in the Spirit, in order to have eternal life, many disciples disappeared. They followed to see things like Jesus feeding the 5,000 and then the 4,000 people, but would not put their trust IN Him. So Jesus here challenged His disciples to choose Him or to go back…
68 Shim‘on Kefa (Simon Peter), answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the word of eternal life. 69 We have trusted, and we know that you are the Holy One of God.”
70 Yeshua (Jesus) answered them, “Didn’t I choose you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is an adversary.” 71 (He was speaking of Y’hudah [Judas] Ben-Shim‘on, [Son of Simon] from K’riot; [Iscariot], for this man — one of the Twelve! — was soon to betray him.) (From the Complete Jewish Bible).
At last Peter spoke with insight! What he said literally was, “You have the declaration of life…” This greatly encouraged Jesus. The time spent with the disciples had paid off. Jesus accepted the statement without needing to correct Peter this time.
V. 63. Life is given by the Holy Spirit. Jesus’ words are life and come from the Holy Spirit. Cf. Luke 22:3 regarding Jesus’ knowing who would betray Him.
Many followers saw that discipleship would be just too sacrificial for them to continue following Jesus – and they walked away from Jesus, so, Jesus asked the twelve disciples if they too wanted to leave.
It was at this point that Peter rose to the occasion by answering Jesus, in John 6:68-69 “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the word of eternal life. 69. – We have trusted, and we know that you are the Holy One of God.”
Following Jesus means obeying Him as Lord.
Some followers could not pay the price of discipleship – and left. The most obvious example was Judas who was once called an apostle, an elder, and a deacon! Yet, he betrayed Jesus. Judas was an insider who put money before loyalty to the truth which he had witnessed. There are those who are drawn to the light and those who hide from it.
Other disciples decided that obeying Jesus was worth the sacrifice.
How would you react to Jesus’ question in v. 67 ‘Do you want to leave too?’
Jesus had taught that love for God is the same as obedience to God.
For example, How would you react to what Jesus taught His disciples in Mark 10:10-12 and Matthew 6:14-15?
The teachings of Jesus were hard enough for some of His followers, to be challenged to the point where many actually did turn back. Would you still choose to be a disciple knowing obedience meant the kind of sacrifice Jesus required from those who say they love God?
- Verse of the week –
Who is Jesus?
John 6:68 (Simon Peter), answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the word of eternal life. 69 We have trusted, and we know that you are the Holy One of God.”
“… He went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.” Matthew 14:23.
Jesus taught His disciples what we call ‘The Lord’s Prayer’; (Luke 11).
Listen here to Albert Malotte’s ‘The Lord’s Prayer’.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever;- Amen.
- The world. (Watch the news. Paul asks for prayer ‘For those in authority.’)
- The ‘suffering church.’ https://barnabasfund.org/nz/pray/daily-prayer/#previous-dates
- Your own situation. (Suggest ‘needs’ rather than ‘wants’.)
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