As we are being challenged to read and study the book of John, I wanted to share some of my personal sermon notes with you to help you understand the book. I preached through the entire book over the course of 1 year when I pastored First Baptist Church Del Rio. Enjoy!
Introduction—Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumbler, WordPress, Google+, LinkedIn, Xanga, Myspace, and on and on and on. These social networking sites have been great ways to stay in touch with friends, family, and business clients. Some people use these sites so that they can become known outside their little circle of influence. Others use these sites just to see pictures, and still others shouldn’t even have one of these sites, if you know what I mean.
What about making Jesus known? Using Facebook or Twitter to invite your friends and family to church so that Jesus could be known.
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcomeit.
6 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.
9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15 John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’” 16 Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.
- Make Jesus known by Knowing His Word—vs.1-2
- Jesus is known throughout much of the world
- To many He is known as a good person, a teacher, a prophet, a scholar, and many other titles.
- To others, Jesus is known as the enemy because He gets in the way of their own agenda.
- And to some, Jesus is known as their King.
- Is He your King this morning? Do you believe that?
- The only way to really make Jesus known is to know the Word of God!
- Vs. 1 explains the timeless fact that the Word of God has always been. It was not only the spoken Word, but the Word has always been in the mind of God. In the beginning was the Word.
- Gen 1:1, says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”
- John parallels Gen 1:1 by making sure we understand that since God was at the beginning, then the Word was there as well. Not in written form, but in God’s mind.
- Our only hope to make Jesus known is that we can understand this Word, or in the Greek text, “Logos” which most often meant spoken word.
- So, John uses “Word” to convey all that is visible. God spoke the world into existence.
- John says in Vs. 2 that Jesus was with God in the beginning. He switches from the Word being with God to Jesus (He) being with God.
- Conclusion—Jesus is the full revelation of what God has communicated to the world. The perfect example of God in Human form as the living Word of God.
- He was with God and therefore knows the father’s will to be the Word of Life to us all!
- We must know the Word of God, or it will be very difficult to Make Jesus Known.
- The World needs to know who Jesus is, in this day and age!
Illustration— By the time a Muslim child is between the ages of 10-12, many of them have the entire Quran memorized. The Jewish children have the Torah memorized by age 12-13 as well.
What about you Christian? Have you made a commitment to Scripture study and memorization? Why not? Our next generation coming up could be the ones that turn it around for the church, or continue to leave the church. It is up to us to decide that knowing the Word of God is important enough.
Parents it is your responsibility to ensure your children are brought up knowing the Word of God. How else will the know it? The church cannot fulfill your entire spiritual needs, since you spend the most time with your kids.
Application—Do you know the Word of God so that Jesus can be made known through you?
- Make Jesus known by Believing His Word—Vs. 3-13
- Vs. 3—God spoke the world into existence. His word created everything you see.
- Vs. 4—In God there is life!
- Vs. 4—The life He give shines through you as you know Him
- Vs. 5—Darkness represents evil, and John says the light (good) overcomes dark (evil)
- Vs. 6—John the writer is referring to John the Baptist, who was sent as a witness about this Light (Jesus)
- Vs. 7—John the Baptist was adamant that he was only the messenger, and not the True Light.
- Vs. 8-9—He wanted everyone to know that the Light was coming.
- Vs. 10—John states the world did not recognize Him.
- Vs. 10—Jesus was not introduced into the world by Facebook or Twitter. Nothing flashy. He wants us to be his voice.
- He wants us to believe in His Word so we can make him known.
- Jesus uses people so others can believe.
- It is our belief that others see and that is how Jesus is made known.
- Vs. 12-13—says that when we believe we gain the right to become children of God. He adopts us into His family. He gives us His name—little Christ or Christian as we call ourselves
Illustration—Believing in God’s Word is no small task, especially when it comes to reaching a new generation. This generation doesn’t want to hear just believe. They don’t want to hear cuz God said so. They want to know that you know what you believe. So, here is how you can rely on the Word of God.
Ancient documents have a validity test that they go through to see how reliable the sources and copies are. The test is this: the timespan between the original writings and the copies of those writings, and also the number of copies that we have. The closer the timespan, the more reliable. The more copies we have, the more reliable the source.
Here is one example: Plato, still taught in universities across our nation today as accepted ancient writings. The timespan between the original and the first copy is 1,200 year. The number of copies is 7. We on the same page?
The New Testament timespan between the original writings and the first copies, 25-50 years. The number of copies is more than 24,000.
Yet the questions on the reliability of the Word of God are always in play.
Application—Are you believing in the Word of God so that He can be made known?
- Make Jesus known by Testifying about His Word—Vs. 14-18
- Vs. 14—Jesus came to live among us so that we could relate to God.
- John testifies that we have seen Him in all His glory, full of grace and truth
- Grace—wow what a word that we need today. Could you imagine someone saying to you, “you have grace!”
- Truth—the truth isn’t the truth today. We don’t like to hear the truth, because the truth hurts many times. Jesus is the truth and He expects us to testify by this truth that we have know
- Vs. 15-17—John says that Jesus has fulfilled the prophecies of the Old Testament prophets. All the way back to Moses.
- We have received blessing after blessing after blessing after blessing
- Vs. 18—God has exposed Jesus to the world so that we could testify of His truth revealed to us in Scripture.
Illustration—I know many of you can testify to goodness of God and how much you have been blessed by Him. I want you to know that your testimony of the truth of Scripture can be the most powerful thing to someone who desperately is looking for answers.
I know that when you pray in your on words, God hears you, and His grace intervenes on your behalf, but praying God’s Word back to Him is powerful because it gives you boldness as you speak to God.
Here is an example of praying God’s Word back to Him: God, thank you for your Word when it says I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. I believe that. You will give me the strength. God, your Word says that I can come to your throne with boldness with my requests, so here I am asking for a miracle! Please help me.
Application—Have you testified about the Word of God so He can made known?
Conclusion—Today God’s Word is the number one best selling book of all time. We have an accurate copy. We can purchase a copy of the Bible in many stores, not just Christian stores. Many families have multiple copies around the house. The Word of God can change our world, if we will invest some time dedicated to knowing, believing, and testifying about it. Make Jesus Known.
Stay in the Light, 1 John 1:7,