St. John’s Gospel (42) - The Trinity in the Gospel of John

Date: 5/31/2015
More audio from All Saints Church
Type: Sunday Sermon
Organization: All Saints
Price: FREE

From the grammy nominated musical group, Death Cab for Cutie: "I Will Follow You Into The Dark"

Love of mine, some day you will die But I'll be close behind
I'll follow you into the dark No blinding light or tunnels to gates of white
Just our hands clasped so tight Waiting for the hint of a spark
If Heaven and Hell decide that they both are satisfied . . .

John 1:1 - In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God.

John 1:14 - And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John 1:18 - No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.

John 4:23 - “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.

John 14:26 - “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.

Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? In the last century, many unbelieving scholars have said that the Gospels do not present Jesus of Nazareth as “truly God” (Nicene Creed). Rather, Jesus is a mere earthly “messiah” like Judas Maccabeus or Simon Bar Kochba. Jesus, on this account, is a less terroristic Osama Bin Laden. Yet, this poor, pitiful “Jesus” was crucified just like all would-be messiahs. The “gospel” here means nothing but a political overturning of the injustices of power in the world. Jesus, they say, was just a man who had pretty good intentions given the oppression of his people by the Romans. This kind of teaching, which is rampant in the institutions of higher learning in our land, is neither scholarly (truth), nor meaningful (good), nor practically useful (helpful for a beautiful life). The real use of this kind of “misquoting Jesus” (Bart Ehrman) is to justify evil, morally and in our knowledge. I can testify to “freedom” that comes with denying God through a denial of Scripture’s actual teaching about Christ. To prove my assertions, consider the earliest extant document of the NT, which (ironically) happens to be a fragment of the Gospel of John (Rylands P75, circa 90 AD). Though John was not written first (actually, the last Gospel written), God is in His rich providence preserved the Gospel of John as the very earliest text-fragment we have!  And it is the most explicit of all NT writings on the Deity of Jesus. The very first verse says this explicitly.

John provides us with rich teaching about the nature of the God of Scripture. Specifically, John teaches the intimate relationship of the Father and the Son and the already present Spirit. From the very first verse of John we are taught that Jesus is the divine Son who is truly God in His eternal nature. Then, the moment Jesus appears in history, at the same time the Spirit descends upon Him (1:32). In the rich banquet of chapter 3, the Spirit will be sent by Jesus and is the cause of the new birth, the new age (to come). In chapter 4, God is Spirit. In the marvelous Bread of Life discourse, it is the Spirit that gives life (6:63). At the feast of tabernacles (focusing on the giving of the revelation of the Law), Jesus promises to send the Spirit as a river of life (7:39). Even more, throughout that final discourse in the upper room, the relationships of Father, Son, and Spirit coalesce as the model of the disciples future mission and life of fellowship (chs. 14-17). Tt was the Son who took on the unique role to be the express exegesis of God, Father, Son, and Spirit, on the cross (ch. 19; 1:18). Finally, in chapters 20-21, Jesus breathes out the Spirit to the disciples in anticipation of Pentecost. This was all to fulfill the mission of the Godhead: “‘As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.’ And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit’” (20:21-22).

Gregg Strawbridge Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as receive a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more