Nowhere Else To Go

That was it! Whether they thought He was crazy or they just could not take it anymore, or both, many of Jesus’ disciples gave up on Him and went away. However, at least the Apostles remained under His teaching, and one of them gave a most compelling reason why they determined to remain under Him.
Nowhere Else To Go
Source - Image owned, uploaded and copyrighted 2017 by the author, Peter P. Macinta (BrotherPete).

Jesus Christ had engaged His hearers at Capernaum where He made some very odd statements. They were offended at Him for saying that He was the Bread that came from heaven (John 6:41-42). He continued, saying a number of things, even pointing to His deity (6:45). But after He outright said that in order to have Eternal Life one had to eat His flesh and drink His blood many forsook Him (6:53-66).

From that moment the Apostle John, by the Holy Spirit, records (verses 67 to 69), “So Jesus said to the twelve, ‘You do not want to go away also,

do you?’ 68  Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.'” Peter’s response in verse 68 is very striking and may be viewed in the following manner.

I. The Plight 68b

"Lord, to whom shall we go? "

Peter speaks for the twelve, but he also speaks for the rest of humanity, whether any accept that or not. The Apostles were just like you and I, ordinary people from various walks of life. Some of us are politically minded, some religious, financially focused, and so on. But we all have this in common: We have sinned against the only true God and have come short of His glory (Romans 3:10-23).

We might not know it, but we are in dire need of immediate and constant help to go against self and sin to enter into the glory of God. We have a need, whether we realize it or not, to rise above the basics of this world where the blind lead the blind and eventually fall into the pit of Hell. We might even do very well in this life, but what about hereafter? We need a good eternal resolution and we are in dire need of a true Savior.

So, what is in this world that we can go to? Would it be the dead, like Buddha or Confucius? What about the various world religions like Hinduism, Shintoism, Taoism, Islam? Speaking of Islam, many are leaving because of its harshness and apparent terror and error. Quite a few are turning to Christ, but hopefully not nominal, superficial Christianity which I often refer to as “Christianity,” using quotation marks in an effort to make distinction from the true living faith.

Might we seek answers from groups like the Watchtower Society (Jehovah’s Witnesses), The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS / Mormon), Christian Science, Swedenborgianism, or anything else included in, or similar to, what is included in Walter Martin’s The Kingdom Of The Cults {1}? We could consider the vast number of denominations and fellowships not considered cults and even those to be part of mainline Christianity. However, history records many of these fall into error, moral issues, or other problems.

Maybe the political systems might work, after all many have money and ability to help people. But, then again, what type of help might that be? Help to remain damned? And, regardless whether it is Communism, Socialism, Monarchies, Democracy, and anything else, all are comprised of humans like you and I, prone to failure, error, and even treachery. Political systems also come and go {2}.

But wait! Should not I, as a U.S. citizen, declare how great and helpful our Nation is and encourage all my readers to look to us for answers and help. Definitely not. I enjoy being a U.S. citizen (more so now that Barack Obama and the liberals are out of power), but no matter how good we might claim or seem to be, it is still the blind leading the blind. When I first came into the world the U.S.A. had a work ethic. Now it has a cater-to-me ethic where many do not want to work or / nor take personal responsibility and accountability for the paths they take. The government seems bent on managing us when they cannot manage themselves.

Well, then, how about family and friends? You might have some excellent family members and friends but again we must remember Romans 3:10-23. Many times they are ladened with their own problems and faults. And, they also come and go {2}. So, in all of this and more, we can identify with Peter and ask, “. . . to whom shall we go?”

II. The Person 68c 

“You . . .”

Peter immediately answers his own query, saying “You . . .” to the One that called them and the One they lovingly (for most of them) followed, Jesus the Christ. Peter further states (verse 69) that this Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ (Messiah), or in Old Testament (OT) terms, the Anointed. Although not called as such, the early chapters of Genesis indicate those who were knowledgeable and desiring were looking for Him ever since YHVH God told the serpent that the seed of the woman would bruise {3} his head (Genesis 3:15).

The Holy Scriptures are clear that Christ is fully God and fully man, and therefor is the perfect Savior for all mankind. It is written in Psalm 28:8, “YHVH is their strength, And He is the saving refuge of His anointed." As fully God and fully man He will be the perfect King of the earth actually visible and reigning on earth for 1,000 years (Revelation 20). At the end of that, as fully God and fully man He will be the perfect Judge.

Peter also referred to Him (verse 69) as the Son of the Living God. The term “Son" is often misunderstood by a number of people. Never think that means that God had sex with a woman. God willing one of these days I would like to write an article on that. For now, suffice it to know that Christ always existed and that God, Who is One, subsists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. There are certainly not three Gods, and God did not develop into the Father, then develop the Son, then the Holy Spirit. He always existed as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in order to rescue us from our sins.

A key term here is “Living God," indicating that anything else that might be called “god" is dead. The term “Living" connects well with the personal Name of YHVH (Yahveh, Yahweh, Jehovah, etc.) which means “The Existing One." In Jeremiah 10:10 He is noted as being the everlasting King: “But YHVH is the true God; He is the living God and the everlasting King. At His wrath the earth quakes, And the nations cannot endure His indignation.”

If we truly surrender to God through Christ He then becomes our personal King and because He is also the Son He makes us sons of the living God. It is written in Hosea 1:10, “Yet the number of the sons of Israel Will be like the sand of the sea, Which cannot be measured or numbered; And in the place Where it is said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ It will be said to them, ‘You are the sons of the living God.'"

III. The Provision 68 d-e 

“. . . have the words of eternal life.”

Before the Lord had come to Capernaum He multiplied loaves and fishes on another side of the Sea of Tiberius. Some of the Jews that were present for that miracle desired to right then and there take Him by force and make Him king (John 6:15). Later, when they could not find Him they learned He had gone to Capernaum. Traveling there they found Him in the synagogue. Christ plainly told them (verse 26) they came to Him because “you ate of the loaves and were filled.” He then admonished them, “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.”

It is needful that we eat and drink, but it is much more needful we partake of the Living God through Christ. Our entire being should want God and more of Him each day. As it is written in Psalm 84:2, “My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of YHVH; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.” The world might have us think spirituality and our flesh are separate things, but God wants our body, soul, and spirit and we will never be at true peace until we surrender to Him with our body, soul, and spirit.

The best and most satisfying life is one dependent upon, directed by, empowered by God. After all, He is the Existing One, the Living God. While the English has one word, “life,” Koine Greek, the language chosen by God for most of,


if not all, the original writings of the New Testament (NT), has a number of words that may be translated as life. Zoe, which is used in Eternal Life, is one. Zoe is often used in the NT for the best and most satisfying life just mentioned. When “Living God” is used in the NT, the word “living” is a form of zoe.

Zoe sort of stands in contrast with another word, bios (bee-os), which can be described as just general everyday life. Bios tends to focus upon the material and earthly. Those that followed Christ because their stomachs were full from the loaves and fishes were dwelling in bios. Christ knew that and desired to bring them to the point of decision where if they were going to truly follow Him they would seek a deeper meaning to life than just physical existence and political gain.

However, their mind and heart stayed in “bios mode” and so they revolted at the idea of eating His flesh. They argued about this amongst themselves (verse 52), but there is never a record of them asking Jesus precisely what He meant. Instead, they soon left Him for good and judged themselves unworthy of zoe as well as Eternal Life (zoe). But that was not before He pointed to what He meant by saying in verse 63, “. . . the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.” They did not bother to ask about that, or to stay around for any further explanation.

Jesus is recorded later at John 14:10 saying, “Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works.” The Son chose to be dependent upon the Father in order to enable and empower us to do the same.

You may recall, or have heard, that after He was baptized in water He was immediately directed by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness where He fasted forty days and forty nights. After that, He was tempted by satan {4} who challenged the very hungry Jesus to show He was the Son of God by turning stones into bread. Instead, Jesus replied (Matthew 4:4), “It is written, 'Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’” This is what He did and this is how we are to be if He lives in us.

The foundation is the written Word of God. Read, study, and memorize portions from a reliable translation {5}. With that, put His written Word into living practice. And, with that, you will sense His Spirit directing you more and more as you obey. You will be obeying His written Word, and His spoken Word to your heart as you let the incarnate Word live through you. For example, you might be in a store or walking down the street and you will sense the Holy Spirit telling you to pray for someone, or tell someone about Christ, or give them a Gospel tract, or anything else that God would have you do.

Be very sensitive and responsive to God’s voice to your heart {6}. It is good, very good, to get to a point in life where if you sense the Holy Spirit telling you not to say or do something then you radically obey Him. Or, He might direct you to say or do something. The more we obey Him the more we will hear from Him and be used by Him for His glory, blessing us with zoe, real zestful, meaningful, and purposeful life that yields spiritual fruit pleasing to God.

Do Not Leave Jesus

Many have made commitments to Christ and His teachings. And, if there would be a way to check, it is probably safe to say that most, yes, sadly most, who have made some sort of commitment have since turned away from Him. Or, some have swallowed the fallacy that once they have been saved they are always saved. Indeed, no one can pluck a Christian out of the hand of God (John 10:28 and 29), but they can let go and walk away (1 Corinthians 15:2, Galatians 5:4, 1 Timothy 1:19).

People leave Jesus in various ways. It is usually not just one way, but a combination of ways and over a course of time. We all have “ups and downs” but we are in danger of falling from grace if we continue on a downward trend. Some symptoms of walking away from Christ are when we do not read and study the Holy Bible, when we disobey Him in any way small or big, and when we do not pray (which includes listening to what God says to our heart). We are slipping away from Him when we listen more to anyone else, including relatives and ministers, than we listen to Him. Another symptom is when we give in to worldly answers, teachings, ways and more.

Hear now the Holy Word of God:

“Take care, brethren, that there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God." -- Hebrews 3:12

Fully surrender to God through Christ, going to only Him:

“Men, why are you doing these things? We are also men of the same nature as you, and preach the gospel to you that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them.” -- Acts 14:15

“. . . we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers.” -- 1 Timothy 4:10

Notes:

{1} Martin, Walter: The Kingdom Of The Cults (Bethany Fellowship, Inc., Publishers, Minneapolis, Minnesota: 1972)

{2} Please read Seeing Men As Walking Trees at http://holybibletreasures.expertscolumn.com/article/seeing-men-as-walking-trees

{3} Some translations have “crush” instead of “bruise” for the damage done to the serpent, however, according to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance as incorporated into the Online Bible program it is the same verb and tense as the Hebrew for “bruise your heel.”

{4} Not capitalized on purpose. Experts Column gives me the freedom to express myself in that way.

{5} Please read Holy Bibles Good And Bad at http://thesureword.expertscolumn.com/article/holy-bibles-good-and-bad .

{6} Please read To Hear The Voice Of God at http://holybibletreasures.expertscolumn.com/article/hear-voice-god .

This article was written in the form of a sermon (message) outline with comments. God willing by April 31, 2017 (hopefully much sooner), you should be able to hear the actual message (sermon) by selecting a link at http://www.sapphirestreams.com/life/audioM.html#M444 .

Unless otherwise noted all Holy Scripture is from the New American Standard Bible changing LORD to YHVH as it rightly should be when the text so indicates. * = For other versions the spelling of some words is updated for our time in addition to changing LORD to YHVH as it rightly should be when the text so indicates.

Not responsible for any advertisements appearing with this article nor am I necessarily in agreement with any of them. The statements of this paragraph hold true not only for this article, but for everything I have placed on the Internet.



Article Written By BrotherPete

I am a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, having served over forty years as a pastor. I graduated from Northeast Bible College of Green Lane Pennsylvania and have a Bachelors Degree in Bible. I am enthused about the Word of God and how it can make a positive change in the life of anyone once it is teamed up with faith and the Holy Spirit. I am happily married. Visit www.sapphirestreams.com.

Posted on 17-03-2017 54 0

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