Friday, March 20, 2015

No More Objections (John 12:34-36)

“So the crowd answered him, “We have heard from the Law that the Christ remains forever. How can you say that the Son of Man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man?” So Jesus said to them, “The light is among you for a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. The one who walks in the darkness does not know where he is going. While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” When Jesus had said these things, he departed and hid himself from them.” (John 12:34–36, ESV)

Objections, objections, objections. When someone doesn’t want to see something then showing them more proofs rarely does the trick of getting them to understand. Years ago in some evangelism training I was taught when I keep getting one objection after another from people, to ask something to the effect of, “Let’s say that all of the objections you’ve given me so far are no longer objections, is there any other objection that you have not mentioned?” In other words, what aren’t you telling me? There is a deeper issue than what has been presented that really is the issue. In counseling it is a common thing to see that the presenting problem is often not the real problem.

Sure, there may have been those in the crowd who had some real questions and were truly seeking to have them answered such that they would believe when those questions are answered. But this is not the case for most. These are the ones that were constantly seeking for one way after another to disqualify Jesus and prove Him not to be who He said He was. For them there was not going to be enough proof. There was going to continue to be another objection.

This time the objection was about Him saying that He was leaving. It was their expectation that the Christ would come and remain as their king. But Jesus had told them that He was leaving. These two did not add up for them. What they did not grasp was that He had come and that He was going to come again. The first time He came was to satisfy the wrath of God by giving Himself as the sacrificial Lamb. They did not grasp that He would be buried, rise again, and ascend to the right hand of the Father where He would remain until He comes at the end of the Great Tribulation to set up His millennial kingdom and then bring in the eternal one.

He told them that they had to make a choice. They either were to believe Him and walk in the light as sons of light or they would reject Him and remain in darkness and judgment. The time was ticking and they had to make a choice. He was not going to be around much longer, and not giving them any more opportunity to raise another objection we read that Jesus then removed Himself from them such that they could not find Him.

Faith is an amazing gift. The ability to believe when we don’t have all of the answers flows from trusting that there is someone who does have those answers. These people could have kept asking one question after another just as we can today. But at some point we have to make a decision to trust. We have to make a decision to trust that God really did send His Son to give us life and having believed that by faith we also have to trust Him to direct our steps every day after that. Walking without answers and without any trust in one who does have the answers is the epitome of walking in darkness. Man can devise all kinds of things, but in the end he really has so much that he simply cannot explain. God created everything and there is nothing beyond His knowledge. He has made Himself known to us. His Son has made us alive through faith, and the Spirit is given to work and flow within. There are many things that I do not know, but I know Him and I trust Him to guide me in those things.

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