📝 = Fill in the Blank
Out of the 12, Peter, James, and John were definitely different, but out of those three, there was something special about John. There was something different about his writings.
Matthew’s gospel opens up with the genealogy of Jesus. Mark’s gospel opens up with the ministry of Jesus. Luke’s gospel opens up with the birth of Jesus. John’s gospel dates much further back with it’s opening. Johns gospel opens with the beginning of all creation.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
It’s nothing like John’s gospel but I must admit for a while John’s gospel rubbed me the wrong way. Everything was going good reading John’s gospel until I started started coming across scriptures like this one in John 13:23,
“After he had said this, Jesus was troubled in spirit and testified, “Very truly I tell you, one of you is going to betray me.” His disciples stared at one another, at a loss to know which of them he meant.”
“One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him.”
Y’all do know that John was writing about HIMSELF right! I got to thinking to myself who does this guy think he is talking about the disciple whom Jesus loved. I would’ve been ok with him saying the disciple that loved Jesus, but this joker is saying the disciple whom Jesus loved and he’s talking about himself. Come on bro! If it just would’ve been one time, I could’ve cringed and kept it moving. BUT HE KEPT ON SAYING IT. Check out John 19:26-27, there it is again,
“When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and THE DISCIPLE WHOM HE LOVED standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home.”
“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.”
“Then she ran and came to Simon Peter, and to THE OTHER DISCIPLE, WHOM JESUS LOVED, and said to them, “They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him.””
At least 5 times, John is recorded referencing himself as, "The disciple, whom Jesus loved!” John we’re all loved by Jesus. John we’re all loved by God, how can you be so stuck on yourself? Finally it hit me, that John wasn’t stuck on himself, John was stuck on the Father’s love.
John wasn’t stuck on himself, John was stuck on the love of Jesus Christ, AND HE WAS TRYING TO GET US STUCK ON IT WITH HIM.
Yes, we’re all loved by God, but this is what made John so significant…
📝 John BELIEVED in this love.
📝 John RECEIVED this love.
📝 John LIVED from this place of love.
📝 John SHARED this love.
John after all of these years I owe you an apology. It wasn’t a matter of who you THOUGHT you were. It was a matter of you KNOWING EXACTLY who you were. John didn’t have the wrong perspective—I did. And for that John, I apologize. In fact, that’s our sermon title this morning….
Sermon Title: I APOLOGIZE
We learned last week that…
How you BELIEVE determines what you ACHIEVE.
That’s why John went on to do unfathomable things. That’s why John went on to write extraordinary books of the Bible. John believed that Jesus was Who He said He was, therefore John believed that He could do what Christ said he could do. We know that John believed, because immediately after John penned these heart stricken words about Jesus on the cross in John 19:33-34,
“But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water.”
IMMEDIATELY AFTER THIS, JOHN WROTE….
“The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so THAT YOU ALSO MAY BELIEVE.”
The very next chapter over John wrote…
“And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written THAT YOU MAY BELIEVE that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that BELIEVING you may have life in His name.”
John saw himself through the eyes of the beholder and John believed in this love and received this love. It was John who penned the most famous verse of them all John 3:16 where it says,
“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.”
John challenges us to see ourselves how God sees us—SO LOVED.
When you look in the mirror what do you see? John compels us to see it! In 1 John 3:1
“BEHOLD what manner of LOVE the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.”
I John 3:1
📝 “SEE what GREAT LOVE the Father has LAVISHED on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”
1 John 3:1
WHY DOES HE COMPEL US???
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.”
I John 4:18
Don’t you see it church…
📝 God’s LOVE came to cast out our FEARS.
📝 God’s love removes THE LEASH that fear had on us.
📝 God’s LOVE causes us to be UNLEASHED.
It was John who recorded in John 14:12….
““Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.”
“But as many as RECEIVED HIM, to them HE GAVE THE RIGHT to become children of God, to those who BELIEVE in His name:”
You got a right to this love.
📝 The Word of God is your PRE-APPROVAL LETTER.
📝 Your view of GOD’S LOVE, determines how you view YOURSELF.
John wrote the book of Revelation, but the great greatest revelation that John had was of THE FATHERS LOVE. This is why he called us beloved. He was trying to get us to see it.
“BELOVED, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.”
I John 3:2
“BELOVED, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
I John 4:1
“BELOVED, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.”
I John 4:7
“BELOVED, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”
I John 4:11
Father, I apologize. I apologize for every time I didn’t see myself how You saw me.
Father, I apologize for every time I didn’t believe in your love, receive your love, live from your love, and share your love.
God, I apologize. I apologize for every time I that I didn’t receive your forgiveness. God is saying to to you today, from this day forward….
📝 Beloved, be-loved.
Father I apologize for every time I desired to receive this love from you but didn’t want to give this love to others.
Theology is the study of God. God is love. If our church does not practice love then we’re theologically incorrect!
“If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.”
1 Corinthians 13:1
“If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, BUT DIDN’T LOVE OTHERS, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”
1 Corinthians 13:1
“If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, BUT DIDN’T LOVE OTHERS, I would be nothing.”
1 Corinthians 13:2
“If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; BUT IF I DIDN’T LOVE OTHERS, I would have gained nothing.”
1 Corinthians 13:3
If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? 1 John 4:20
IS YOUR LIFE BUILT ON THIS KIND OF LOVE?