Introduction from L.Willows: I need to “Believe”; to believe with all of my heart, my mind and to live it in the hours of each day. “This world” and “this life” need BELIEF in GOD as our leading value. Without this, we have no way to measure or direct our footsteps forward. Our hearts would lean upon circumstance for hope. We have been given more. In the Gospel of John, we are reminded that by the power of faith we receive the Son of God, Jesus Christ and become Children of God.
This is what BELOVED is about. I celebrate, with you that at every moment we are blessed in the presence of The Holy Beloved, who is with us, whose Spirit is placed within our hearts, who intercedes for us and whose Father loves us with might that we can scarcely comprehend.
Remembering this, I’d like to highlight some passages from the Gospel of John with an introduction from Ligonier Ministries. (L. Willows
The Gospel of John from Nathan W. Bingham
A special challenge to interpreters of John’s Gospel is the relation between seeing “signs” and belief.
The author places great emphasis on the unique significance of Jesus’ miracles because they reveal much about His Person and work (John 20:30, 31). But some passages seem to suggest that belief based solely upon having personally seen the signs is not a good thing.
In John 4:48, for instance, Jesus rebukes His hearers, “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.”
This passage brings to mind the statement of Thomas in John 20:25, “Unless I see … I will never believe.” Therefore, many readers have concluded that an ideal faith has no interest in miracles. The problem with this conclusion is twofold.
First, if faith resulting from miracles is not good, why does Jesus perform miracles? Second, why does John link these signs to faith in Christ (John 20:31)?
To believe in Jesus means not only to acknowledge His ability to perform miracles, but also to accept what those miracles as “signs” reveal about His Person and work.
The evangelist indicates that the written record of Jesus’ signs is sufficient testimony for those who are not eyewitnesses. This understanding is implied by what Jesus said to Thomas, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29).
Faith can be produced and encouraged by the signs Jesus performed. But the goal of this faith is to apprehend Jesus in His fullness, not merely as a miracle worker.
Jesus is revealed by His “signs” as the eternal Word of God, one in glory with the Father and the Spirit.
It is not necessary to be an eyewitness of the signs; the record of them is sufficient to convey their power for eliciting and strengthening faith in Jesus as the Messiah, the Son of God.
One of the most striking distinctives of this Gospel is the Prologue (John 1:1–18) that presents Jesus as the eternal Logos, or Word, the One who reveals the Father.
Christ reveals the Father because He shares in the Father’s deity. He is the One who made the universe (John 1:3).
He met the needs of the Israelites in the wilderness, and now He provides spiritual water and bread (John 4:13, 14; 6:35). In short, He is one with the Father, the “I am” (John 5:18; 8:58; 10:30–33; cf. Ex. 3:14).
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. …
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.
Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.
But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”
Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?”
“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.
But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.