Thursday, February 23, 2012

John 5:31-38

Good news! Erin and Danny’s baby boy, Royce, came a day early! He arrived yesterday and weighed in at 6lb. 6 oz. They have not yet operated on his heart, so I’ll keep you posted. Let’s rejoice in the goodness of God, who brought this little one safely to his mommy and daddy. Erin had a C-section and is exhausted. I’m sure her emotions are all over the place! Continue to remember this family to our Heavenly Father!

In this next passage of John 5, Jesus finishes His defense of His identity. Not that He needed defense for His own sake, but that these Jewish leaders might understand Who it was that was standing in front of them and that they might be saved. Knowing that His testimony about Himself was not enough for these men, He argues His case on the basis of those witnesses who testify to His deity: John the Baptist; Jesus’ own works which the leaders had seen; and most importantly, the witness of the Father Himself.

There is another who testifies in my favor, and I know that his testimony about me is valid.

“You have sent to John and he has testified to the truth. Not that I accept human testimony; but I mention it that you may be saved.

John was a lamp that burned and gave light, and you chose for a time to enjoy his light. 
“I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the very work that the Father has given me to finish, and which I am doing, testifies that the Father has sent me. And the Father who sent me has himself testified concerning me. You have never heard his voice nor seen his form, nor does his word dwell in you, for you do not believe the one he sent. (John 5:32-38)

Jesus’ validation came from the Father, when He said, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17) It was the Father’s opinion of what Jesus did that mattered to Him. He was not here to win votes or a popularity contest. Where does our validation come from? Jon Courson poses this question, when he writes, “Is your validation coming from your own accomplishments, or from others patting you on the back? It’ll never be enough. You’ll always be one pat shy of satisfaction... True validation comes when you hear the voice of the Father in your heart, saying, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ That’s the only validation that brings satisfaction and stability. That’s the only validation that will make your life attractive, fruitful, and effective.” (Jon Courson’s Application Commentary:New Testament P. 476)

I’ve had enough accolades in my life to know that if all I’m looking for is the praise of men, I will NEVER be fulfilled. Man’s praise is empty, and it only takes one negative comment to completely undo anything good you hear from hundreds of others! Just tonight I received an email from a father of a boy in my math group that merely said he wanted to meet with me tomorrow regarding his son’s math homework. Not a “Dear Mrs. White” greeting; he didn’t even sign it. If I were driven by the approval of men, I’d probably be shaking in my boots. As it is, I’m looking forward to a God-opportunity to share with someone who must be a frustrated dad! I may not win him over, but my goal will be to honor my Father by my responses. I so yearn to hear “Well done” from Him! Don’t you?

This study is another example to me every morning that I am not here to please men.  Some mornings when I get up, I’m so excited to dig into God’s Word and just see what He has for me. On other mornings, like yesterday for example, I dread sitting down at the computer. If I were doing this to get the attention of readers, I would probably be so discouraged. But because I know that this morning time meeting with God in the morning is important to my relationship with Him, and is the one thing that keeps me focused each day, I sit down here at the computer whether or not I feel like it. And I am never disappointed, because He meets me here every morning! May we always seek our validation from Him!

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