by Philip Layton
Jesus heals at the pool of Bethesda and states his authority to give life to the dead
- What did Jesus mean in verse 14? What could be worse than the man’s prior condition (v 5)?
- The Jews were trying harder to kill Jesus (v 18) because he claimed equality with God. Do you think he was right, or was he a liar or deluded?
Share your thoughts below, or tweet about it with the #boundlessbible hashtag. Don't forget this week's Children's Challenge!
Going Deeper from 'Words of Life'
‘I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life’ (v 24).
People tend to be more casual about faith today. They might claim to be spiritual; they might even say they believe in God. But when you speak of accepting Christ as their personal Saviour, they may say they’re not ready – or willing – to take this step.
The Jews caught Jesus performing a miracle on the Sabbath. After healing a paralysed man, they questioned him about doing ‘work’ on this sacred day. Jesus went on to claim he was God’s Son. This was blasphemy to the Jews. Yet Jesus responded by saying those who believed in him would cross over from death to life.
Many people become obsessed with death – or the avoidance of it. Researchers are desperately striving to discover ways to prolong life for as long as possible. Apparently the human body peaks at age twenty-five. A hundred years ago, this was roughly middle age for most people worldwide. Although we’re living much longer, our bodies still peak at the same age. We’re now just ‘extending’ the timeline on the other end. It’s not only the deterioration of the body that is the main issue as we get older; it’s the deterioration of the senses and the failing of the mind.
Nothing can prevent the inevitable. But the wonderful news is this: Jesus Christ offers a place for us once we leave this life. He offers us everlasting life:
‘Those who hear will live’ (v 25).
We’re to have no fear of death. It’s merely a stepping stone to a new and exciting life, which begins once we accept Christ. Death to life. What better news to share with the world?
Father, help me to reach out to someone today, someone fearing death. May your Spirit speak through me, giving them reassurance of eternal life ahead – if they trust in God completely.
Beverly IvanyTags: John