TEXT: John 14:29-31
29 And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.
30 Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.
31 But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.
Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 235.
Nikolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf said, “Do you think it was self-denial for the Lord Jesus to come down from heaven to rescue a world: Was it self-denial? No, it was love — love that swallows up everything, and first of all self.”
As this portion of Jesus’ last few hours alive draws to a close, Jesus highlights the reason why He is going through with His sacrifice on the cross. It is not because the Jews will demand His death. It is not because the Romans will nail Him to a cross. It is not because Satan is coming to drag Him away to His death. It is not because Judas has forced His hand through betrayal.
It is because of the reason given in verse 31: “That the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so do I.”
Jesus loved the Father and would be obedient to Him unto the end. The disciples knew that Jesus loved the Father; Jesus had tried to impart that love to them throughout His life and ministry. Just as the disciples’ love for Jesus would be shown through their obedience, Jesus’ love for His Father would be shown through His obedience to the Father’s command.
The Father’s commandment was for Him to lay down His life for the salvation of the world. If someone, even God, told you to lay down your life for someone else, would you do it? If you loved that person dearly, you might consider it. But what if God told you to suffer the death penalty for a serial killer? Would you do that? Jesus did. That is what it meant for Him to be obedient to the Father’s command.
In Shirley Jackson’s famous short story, “The Lottery,” a small American farming town of about 300 people holds an annual drawing to ensure a good harvest. Every family must write their name on a slip of paper and put it in a box. The next day, the drawing is held and a family is selected. The head of household, Bill Hutchinson, takes the slip of paper with his family’s name on it. Then a second-round drawing is held and one person above 16 years of age in that family is selected. Bill’s wife, Tessie, is picked. The townsfolk pick up stones and stone her to death, sacrificing her, they believe, to ensure a good crop. When Mrs. Jackson published that story in The New Yorker in 1948, many readers were so appalled by it that they sent hate mail and cancelled their subscriptions for several months.
We can easily identify with how those readers felt regarding the unfairness of that situation, not to mention the false, superstitious beliefs of the townsfolk. While Mrs. Jackson never claimed to be a Christian, some critics have recognized Christian symbolism in her story. One can imagine God looking down from the towers of eternity across the vast plain of history past and future, searching for a suitable sacrifice to save fallen humanity. Having found none, He turns to His own Son and gives Him the commandment to lay down His life for the good of the world.
Rodney A. Whitacre said, “The cross itself will demonstrate what everything else in Jesus’ life has also testified — that he loves the Father and is obedient to him. Here is a manifestation for the world that is meant for the salvation of the world. The cross is both God’s judgment and his evangelism, and both are expressions of his love.”
Just as Tessie was stoned to death by the people for the good of the people, Jesus Christ allowed himself to be put to death by the people for the good of the people. Of course, Jesus went to the cross willingly because He loved His Father. Later, the world would look on Jesus’ willing act of sacrifice and marvel at the love, the sacrifice, and the obedience of the only begotten Son of God. Thus, at the end of this part of their discussion, Jesus tells His disciples, “Arise, let us go hence.” ‘The time for talk is over. Let me walk this path of obedience, love, and sacrifice.’
Isaac Watts wrote:
Alas, and did my Savior bleed?
And did my Sovereign die?
Would He devote that sacred head
For such a worm as I?
Was it for sins that I had done
He groaned upon the tree?
Amazing pity! grace unknown!
And love beyond degree!
Well might the sun in darkness hide,
And shut His glories in,
When Christ, the mighty Maker, died
For man, His creature’s sin.
That is why Jesus went to the cross… because He loved God and because they both loved the world and desired to save it from sin.
The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Please understand that because of your sins, you deserve punishment in hell. Romans 6:23 says “the wages of sin is death…” This is both physical death and spiritual death in hell.
But here is the good news. John 3:16 reads, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The phrase “For God so loved the world” means that if you are in this world, God loves you no matter what you have done.
The next phrase, “that He gave His only begotten Son” refers to Jesus Christ. He is God’s son who suffered, bled, and died on the cross for your sins and for mine, and He was buried and rose again.
Our next phrase is “that whosoever believeth in Him”. The word “whosoever” means anybody at anytime. The phrase “believeth in Him” means to trust in Him, to depend upon Him, to rely on Him, or to have faith in Him for your salvation.
Our next phrase, “should not perish”, refers to eternal punishment in a place called hell.
And, lastly, the phrase “but have everlasting life” means to live eternally in Heaven with God.
The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.