Jesus gave them this answer: 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
The Book of John is chocked full of all things of Jesus. It narrates His arrival as The Holy Spirit had told John the Baptist, His sermons, the time in His life prior to his arrest, and finally, The Passion of Christ.
Chapters 2-12 consist of Jesus’ ministry. He meets with a religious leader named Nicodemus and teaches him that no one can enter the Kingdom of Heaven unless they are personally “Born-Again”. Several times throughout the book, Jesus claims that He, Himself is God, “I and the Father are one”. Jesus also repeats the Jehovaic statement, “I AM” as found in Exodus 3:14, for example, when Jesus declares, “I am the resurrection and the life” (11:25), “I am the way the truth and the life” (14:6), “I am the door” (10:9), and “I am the bread of life” (6:35).
In His sermons, Jesus made a lot of very profound statements to the people. I find myself wondering, "why were people so eager to accept all that Jesus said, instead of thinking he was a [quack]?" I believe that if the lives that the people led were lives with some authority looming over their heads and one of meandering to what had to be done to survive. There was the Jewish faith, but the people of this day were so desolate that they truly NEEDED something to give them hope!
What I love most are the sermons and the parables that Jesus gives to the listeners. I believe that at first, the people that received Jesus' Word were small in numbers. But as the word spread throughout the Holy Land of this man named "Jesus" whose sermons gave everyone so much hope that they left, albeit hesitantly, with the feeling that they had been given something that, although intangible, would change their lives forever. All that was needed was for Jesus to instill a faith in the people that they didn't originally possess. Faith in a beautiful life lived on earth that was possible only by believing in the eternal life that was promised to Jesus' followers. Who knows what they believed prior to Jesus coming into the towns and giving his sermons in the fields and hills lying just outside the small towns.
Jesus was a very charismatic individual. The Holy Spirit and the Father had guided his words and actions ever since he was a young boy. His always positive messages in his sermons, I can imagine because I've read them, brought about so much love from God through his Son, Jesus. It is no wonder that the leaders of these areas felt threatened. They probably felt that through Jesus' sermons, that they might lose their control over the people, and thus, they did.
In the end of the Book of John, we find the Passion of Christ. We know this to be true, and it was barbaric at the least. But, those things that transpired were of that time period. I think of the time in the 1500's and later when people were either beheaded in front of a crowd and their heads placed on top of a stick for all to see, or they would be hung at the gallows.
I must admit, I have made the statement to people many times that I wish we would return to beheadings and hangings, instead of crowding all the prisons with convicts supported by our tax dollars. They have everything they need, so in actuality, they have no real deterrent. But that is another story.
In summary, I ask that you pick up your Bible and read the entire book of John. This is truly a great gift because it is the real summary of Jesus' adult life and his death on the cross for all sin, for all time. Believe in His words. The Book of John is full of Jesus' sermons and parables. You will find delight and wonder, your thoughts provoked by Jesus' words, questioning your life and if your are living the life worthy of a place in a beautiful eternity where Jesus awaits anxiously for our prayers, our abiding love, and the day when He will personally welcome each of us into the Kingdom that he described over 2,000 years ago. Can you think of anything or anyone who has withstood the test of time as The Holy Bible, the Word of God, and Jesus Christ, the Son of God?
Believe, Love, Acknowledge, have Faith and Trust, Follow, and cross over to Eternal Life! Hallelujah!
God bless you all,