Hello Everyone. Our visit with the JWs went well, although we did have a surprise. There was only one JW who came. We had a really good talk and I believe it went well. I ask my readers to pray that God opens up the hearts of the JWs that my roommate and I are witnessing to and that he will also give us the knowledge that we need and also the wisdom to use it as we ought. In this field, it’s not enough to just have the knowledge. It also requires that you have the proper information on how and when to use it. It’s tempting to come out with the Trinitarian guns blazing, but that just won’t work.
For now, let’s turn to the text. John 6:43-51:
43“Stop grumbling among yourselves,” Jesus answered. 44“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. 45It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’[d] Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me. 46No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father. 47I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life. 48I am the bread of life. 49Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. 50But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. 51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
Some of you might be wanting me to post my thoughts on the Calvinist/Arminian debate in this verse. Keep wanting. I wish to say that now because I want any reading through this section to know I try my best to avoid commenting on what I consider secondary issues. Deeper Waters is a blog that is interested in defending Mere Christianity. Perchance if this ministry ever broadens, that might change. For now, it is going to be Mere Christianity.
Jesus states that all who learn from the Father come to him. This fits in with the Trinitarian understanding as if you truly wish to know the Father, you will come to the Son. To refuse the Father is to refuse the Son and to refuse the Son is to refuse the Father. It’s a kind of all-or-nothing deal.
He also tells us that no one has seen the Father except the one who is from God. This brings us back to John 1:18. When the text says no one has seen God, it means no one. It does not say no man has seen God. This would mean that while the angels are in his presence, they never get to see him as he is.
Only Christ can see the Father for he bears the nature of the Father. He is the only one who can truly know the Father in all that he is. For us to understand God, it has been said that we are practically fleas sitting on the backs of elephants.
Christ connects this with everlasting life. If we believe him, we have everlasting life. John has a constant emphasis on truth in his gospel so much so that Christ is said to be the truth in John 14:6. This could be in part to counter pre-Gnostic tendencies that were creeping up in the church.
He then compares himself to the manna in the wilderness. Those who ate of it died, but if anyone eats the bread that he gives, he will live forever. What does this mean exactly? Since the next section focuses on that aspect, then it would be good to cover that when we get to it.
Which should be tomorrow’s blog. See you then!