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June 18, 2011

 The Miracle of Inspiration

Part Two

The Father’s Commandment

John 12:47-49

      As Jesus concluded His public ministry, He repeated His call to salvation.  He linked salvation to hearing and keeping His word.  The word of Jesus carries essential significance for all men.  Therefore, Jesus carefully elaborated the importance of His word for the world.

John 12:47, Page 1682

“If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world.”

    In John 12:47, page 1682 Jesus said:  “If anyone hears My sayings (“ῥημάτων“) and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world.”  Jesus said He came to save the world, not to judge now anyone who hears His sayings and does not keep them.  Time matters here.  Jesus did not say He would never judge the world, but rather He had not come now to judge the world.  Jesus came to save the world now through His “sayings” of salvation.   Jesus brought salvation through His sayings and empowering individuals to keep them by faith.   Jesus alone stands as the sole Savior of mankind.  Jesus spoke the words of life: “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life” (John 6:63, page 1667; compare John 6:68, page 1667).  The sayings of Jesus give life or bring judgment.

John 12:48, Page 1682

“He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, he has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.”

    In John 12:48, after explaining that He did not come to judge anyone, Jesus addressed the consequences of rejecting Him and His “sayings”: “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.”  In verse 47, Jesus did not deny judgment would come upon those who reject His “sayings,” but only that He came to judge those people now.  Instead, Jesus described a future judgment based upon His “sayings.”  Jesus did not focus upon His person, but upon His “sayings.”  Those “sayings” of Jesus result in one of two destinies for every man hearing them: (1) saved by Jesus or (2) judged by those “sayings.”  In this case, Jesus saves people who keep His “sayings” from the judgment.  No one hearing His “sayings” can ignore them.    The words of Jesus form the basis for future and eternal judgment.  Surely those words have been accurately and completely recorded for everyone.

John 12:49, Page 1682

“For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak.”

    In John 12:49, page 1682, Jesus explained that He spoke according to the Father’s commandment: “For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak.”  Jesus first explained that the word He spoke would sit in judgment upon everyone who rejected them.  In contrast, everyone who heard and kept His word would be saved.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ resulted in either judgment or eternal life.  Now Jesus discloses that the Father commanded Him what to say and what to speak.  Jesus did not speak on His own initiative (John 14:10, pages 1684-1685).  Both the content of His words (Matthew 13:10-17, pages 1522-1523) and the form of His words (see for example Matthew 13:34-35, page 1524) were commanded by the Father.  In other words, Jesus and the Father were concerned not only with the content of the Gospel, but also the way to present the Gospel, such as speaking parables to some, and explaining the parables to others.  Jesus did not add or subtract words by His own initiative.  Jesus emphasized that the words He spoke He did not choose Himself, but rather the Father gave Him a message and commanded Him to proclaim it.  That message contained the best news ever preached to humanity.                                                     

Father John 14:25

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Son John 14:26

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Holy Spirit John 14:26

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Disciples

       Some people today teach that the Bible only contains the “gist” of the words of Christ, particularly the words of Christ in the Gospels.  These people, whom I will call “gisters,” provide a variety of reasons why you should reject the verbal integrity of the Bible.  In essence, the “gisters” ignore the miraculous nature of revelation.  They think that men wrote the Bible and, at times, got the facts wrong, or they failed to recall the exact words of Jesus and so substituted their own words.  Such teaching denies the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the production of Scripture.  Furthermore, “gisters” cloak themselves with the vocabulary of conservative Christianity by using terms like “inspiration” and “inerrancy.”  “Gisters” try to redefine “inerrancy” and “inspiration” so that they may believe that “truth” in the Bible means the Gospel writers may not have reported the actual words of Jesus, even when they claim they did.  While “gisters” agree that the Holy Spirit moved men to write, they claim that He did not necessarily overcome their faulty memories.  Instead, according to the “gisters,” the Holy Spirit deemed it best to add words or change words from those actually spoken by Jesus.  In their minds, it would be o.k. to pretend and write that Jesus actually said those make-believe words.  Such reasoning reduces the meaning of “inspiration” and “inerrancy” to nothing more than poppycock.  Furthermore, it attacks the ministry of the Holy Spirit, the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ, and righteousness of God the Father, for the “gisters” would try to strip them of every shred of veracity.  The “gisters” affirm that the “inspiration” of the Bible, but deny the miraculous nature of inspiration.  The “gisters” affirm the truth of the Bible, but then allege that the Bible actually contains many lies about what Jesus said.  To accept the testimony of the “gisters” as true means that you must reject the Bible as true in every word.  Let God and His word be found true, and every man a liar (Romans 3:4). 

       No one seriously argues that Jesus communicated only the “gist” of the Father’s words to people, but rather Jesus spoke the very words of life (John 6:68, page 1667) or judgment (John 5:25-29, page 1663).  Because of the gravity of the consequences of hearing and rejecting the Father’s words spoken by Jesus, and transmitted in the New Testament by the miraculous ministry of the Holy Spirit, you can understand why God never intended to communicate only the “gist” of Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Furthermore, since the Father and the Son had deliberately decided how the message would be proclaimed (as prophesied centuries before Christ appeared (Matthew 13:14-17, pages 1522-1523), as well as its substance, no one should be surprised that both the Holy Spirit and the Son provided not the “gist” of the Father’s message, but both the form and content of divine words of life or judgment.

    If people readily understand that Jesus spoke the words of His Father who commanded Him what to say and what to speak, why would anyone deny the miraculous ministry of the Holy Spirit performing the same communication of the Father’s words through the disciples?  Taken together, the words originated with the Father, then proclaimed by the Son at the Father’s commandment as to what to say and what to speak, and finally miraculously recalled by the Holy Spirit as He moved men to write down the God-breathed text of Scripture. 

    Once I heard a story about missionary, serving for about thirty years in Brazil.  He believed that John displayed a wonderful imagination in writing the Book of Revelation.  While that missionary gave his life in the service of spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ, he did not comprehend the doctrine of inspiration. If he did, then he would have known that inspiration guided the writing of Revelation, and not human imagination.  Everyone holding to “gist” theology makes an even greater error than that missionary.  “Gisters” deny: (1) the miraculous nature of inspiration and (2) the scope of the Fathers’ commandment regarding the content and substance of the words of Jesus Christ.

      So we learn about the inspiration of the Word of God today.

    ●  The Word of God means that God communicated His very words to Jesus Christ, who spoke them verbatim.

     ●  The Word of God means that the Holy Spirit caused the disciples to remember all the words of Jesus and record them accurately in the Bible.  Each writer used his own vocabulary and style of writing, but God guaranteed the final product to be completely without errors.   God inspired the Bible by breathing His word through the individual authors of the Bible.   We call it verbal inspiration (the inspiration applies to the words, not just thoughts) and plenary inspiration (the inspiration applies to all the words of the Bible).  The Bible accurately reflects the intention and very words of God in writing it down.  Through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, He moved human authors to write down the revelation of God to human beings. 

       ●  The Word of God means that the Holy Spirit worked a miracle of inspiration by taking the words and acts delivered from the Father to Son, and then taking the things of Son said and miraculously causing the disciples to write those words and actions down.  

Application for Today

        God intended for us to have a permanent record of the teachings of Jesus.  God never promised to record each word of Jesus (John 21:25, page 1698), but He did promise to give us everything we need to live in His will and do His works (2 Timothy 3:16-17, page 1864).  We should always place our confidence in Christ Jesus, and the Word of God.  The truth of the Bible reflects and records the truth of Christ.  The Holy Spirit of God helps us understand and apply the Word of God today.  As Jesus said, the Holy Spirit helps us and will lead us into all truth.  Will you rely upon the truth of God’s Word and live accordingly today?

 

 

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Christ Assembly provides free access to various studies from the Bible, the Word of God. The studies in this website are not inspired, but God produced the Bible, consisting of sixty-nine books (39 Old Testament and 27 New Testament). The Holy Spirit inspired authors to produce original autographs of the Bible in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. Those original authors wrote over the course of many centuries. They wrote divinely inspired words and every word was divinely inspired. The authors communicated in their own styles, and with their own vocabulary, but God breathed out every word of the final autographs. The words in the Bible really matter, and deserve careful study. 
 
As we study, we seek to love Jesus more because His word has instructed us so that we learn His ways. Eternal life consists in knowing God the Father, and Jesus Christ Whom God sent. As the eternal God of Glory, One with His Father, the Son of God took flesh and dwelt among us. Because of His death, He used His blood to purchase our redemption. He was raised for our justification. We now live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved us and gave Himself for us. By the grace of God, the Holy Spirit abides in every born-again believer and fills us with His presence and blessings. He leads us into all truth. Jesus is the truth, and the way, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Jesus, our Lord. 
 
We look forward to His imminent return to the clouds of earth, to snatch away the believers alive on earth, so that we may be forever with the Lord. When He returns to the clouds, He will bring with Him all those people in Christ who died before His return to the clouds. We encourage one another with the promises of God, Who makes our path grow brighter and brighter, until the full light of day shines forth. We love Jesus and look forward to seeing Him soon. After Jesus removes the believers from the earth, then a terrible period of seven years follows where God brings measured and precise judgments upon the people alive on earth. God cut those days of  Tribulation short, or no flesh would have been saved. Jesus will then return to earth, slay His enemies, and place His feet on the Mount of Olives where He ascended to heaven. He will then reign on earth for a thousand years, and believers will reign with Him. After the Millennial Reign of Christ, all unbelievers will be judged at the Great White Throne Judgment, and they will suffer according to their deeds done on earth. They will be cast into the Lake of Fire, a place of torment night and day for eternity, because they never received the free gift of salvation while alive on earth. One day, every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God. Today we invite you to come and see Jesus, and learn from Him, for He is gentle and humble in heart. Take His yoke upon you, for His burden is easy and His yoke is light. He will give you rest for your soul as you trust Him. We receive salvation only from Jesus, by faith alone in Jesus, Who gives us the free gift of eternal life. 
 
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