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My doctor put me on crutches and then referred me to see a physical therapist three times a week. As you can imagine, this only added to my stress! I wondered how I was going to have time for this. My physical therapist turned out to be a young divorced woman with a small child. And as I got to know her, I discovered that she had been abandoned by her husband and was pretty bitter about it. She also let me know that her father was an atheist, and the only people that she was angrier with than God were people from church.

But I persisted. I challenged her to read John 1, and made the argument that at the very least, she should be educated to know for herself what the Bible says. She hesitantly agreed. It was a long rehab, but by the end of our time together, God miraculously brought that young woman to accept Christ! Soon after my recovery, I moved to Atlanta. Then about two years later, my old church asked me to come back to Santa Cruz to speak.

As I walked off the stage, there she was, tears flowing down her face. Thank you so much!


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And I want you to meet my little girl. But what I realized in the midst of my hardship was this:. In the midst of our pain and suffering, God says, I want to come close to you during your difficulty. He wants to take the difficult issues in your life and make you fearful. Even though, initially, your hardship might make you feel isolated and fearful, it could also be the greatest opportunity that God ever gives you to preach the Word. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Her decision to follow Jesus was because — for the first time — she explored the living Word of God for herself. God has an agenda for your life, but so does Satan. While Jesus does not disavow a general connection between sin and suffering, he completely refutes a specific connection on the individual level between the two. Finally, the passage ends with a bit of a word play; the Sent One sends the blind man to the Sent Pool.

We are reminded here of another pool, with no intrinsic power to heal, to whom Jesus sent another man; that being Bethesda Perhaps this convoluted scenario is prompted by the assumption that this is absolutely impossible The confused populace desires insight into this matter and, therefore, goes to their local religious leaders. No intended harm must be assumed on the part of the neighbors — at the very least, not from the text. The text records that this spawns a division among the Pharisees. What is truly ironic concerning the passage and should not be missed and in fact Jesus uses later on is that those with sight are going to a man born blind for guidance, a man who in fact, according to the text, had never physically seen Jesus.

Finally the Pharisees arrive among the family of the man born blind, having apparently fallen into the convoluted explanation of some of the neighbors. To the growing population of believers to whom John is writing, this passage concerning parents who refuse to believe along with their son may have been all the more applicable as they faced similar hardships. Three questions are begged in this section: 1 Is Jesus a sinner, having broken the Law concerning the Sabbath?

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The dilemma of final questioning is established quickly; the man born blind and the Pharisees are at odds over the most simple of questions: Is Jesus a sinner? The Pharisees again enter into the same line of questioning, causing one to take pause. Why would one ask the same question repeatedly? Are the Pharisees hard of hearing? Surely this would be below such a court! With the same sarcasm here demonstrated, the man born blind changes his cordial dialogue and employs a mastery of sarcasm and replies by asking if perhaps they harbored some secret desire to become followers of Christ themselves and were, therefore, wishing to hear his story again.

Neville Goddard I Say You Are Gods

His argument is a simple one — in fact overly simplistic — but is effective in communicating his point. Nevertheless, his point is made: Jesus is doing the will of God, if He was not from God, he could do nothing; and with this the Pharisees have the answer they desire. The Pharisees have prejudged Jesus as a sinner, and now this man has unequivocally identified with Him.

By virtue of their logic, the man born blind has called God a sinner, giving them ample evidence to cast him out of the synagogue. To the man born blind, he has seen his redemption, the Son of Man, the Coming One, the one lifted up to heal, to judge and reward, and the one who comes to do the will of the Father , , , , The parables treatment of the sheep should perhaps be read in light of the treatment of the Pharisees of the blind man.

In the context of Jesus speaking to an urban crowd and of John writing to a large and mixed audience throughout the empire, the question arises: Why would Jesus, and later John, refer to Him in terms of one of the most universally despised occupations?

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The widespread perception of these individuals was one in which they were viewed as being rough, unscrupulous, and in some cases, thieves. Certainly Jesus and John have a very pointed reason for including such a literary device. It has been stated in much of scholarship that Jesus leans heavily on Ezekiel What follows is a basic comparison:.

John — False shepherd vs. Ezekiel 34 — Prophecy against the shepherd of Israel for their mistreatment — God Himself will become the shepherd to seek and save — God himself will judge amongst his flock concerning who muddies the waters, tramples the grass, and between the weak and abusive sheep. Jesus clearly indicates himself as the Good Shepherd.

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Zechariah also offers an extensive shepherding metaphor, but for the sake of brevity it will not be discussed here. It should be mentioned that in the treatment of these passages few commentators give it the place of Ezekiel in consideration, although fascinating parallels abound in that text as well.

We are now moved to the Feast of Dedication, or Hanukkah, the celebration of the purification and rededication of the temple by Judas Maccabeus on December 25, BCE after its capture, plundering and defiling by the Syrians three years earlier. Jesus returns to the Temple grounds where he would often teach and preach.


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  7. Given the time of year, his presence in the covered colonnade of Solomon makes sense within the meteorological context; and John points this out, given that this is the area where the first believers would gather. The question remains, in this new scene does the audience remain the same? While it may be impossible to determine the audience as remaining the Jews and the Pharisees who had issued judgment against the man born blind in the previous scene, it is certainly not impossible and perhaps likely.

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    While it might be tempting then to see this in a non-Trinitarian light, the opposite is in fact the case. Jesus is not the same person as the Father; therefore, we see Jesus praying to Him and being commissioned by Him.

    19 Bible verses showing God’s thoughts toward us

    While not being one single person, they are rather singularly one in purpose and action, as only one unified being can be; therefore this verse does not stand against Trinitarian theology, but stands rather squarely in support of it. Jesus uses a response that establishes the contrast in the situation: the mob attempts to stone him vs. Jesus, who has done good works. Yet given the context of the holiday, it is no small charge that they bring against him. Antiochus IV Ephiphanes, the man whom Hanukkah celebrated deliverance from, claimed himself to be a deity and was successful in causing some Jews to fall away and follow him.

    If this summation seems preposterous, perhaps it is deserved. While Jesus may veil his meaning within this etymological argument as he has recently veiled his deity within a rather vague declaration , his point is wholly other. To argue the contrary is to ignore the context of the passage and the passage that Jesus quotes. John Vs. Psalm 82 Vs. If the context of this passage is truly the totality of chapters and further, it is impossible to escape the thematic connection between these verses.

    If Jesus is not intending the entirety of the context of Psalm 82, then, in fact, the only option remaining is a bizarre veiled attempt to save his life for the time being by means of an etymological study. But this view is not supported in the text. In conclusion, approaching this text from a primarily etymological standpoint would be akin to approaching a Van Gogh painting from the range of one inch; you would have a great appreciation for that one inch, and in the process would miss the entire beauty and subject matter of the work.

    No, but it is equally not an argument of primarily semantics. Jesus moves on to make it clear that they are attempting to stone one who has been consecrated or sanctified by God himself, which could be an ambiguous reference, in the context of the celebration of Hanukkah and of the consecration of the Temple, to the fact that Jesus is, in fact, the new Temple If the crowds will not accept his words, what is there left for them to accept but his actions, his actions that remain in keeping with the will of the Father? Jesus makes no claims that his relationship with the Father is based on His works, but rather the precise opposite: they flow from his identity in the Father.

    In these words the building controversies of chapters come to an end, albeit an incomplete end.