Tuesday, 8 August 2017

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Living For God Despite The World's Faithlessness - John 7:1-13

Excerpt of Pastor W.F. Kumuyi's Monday Bible Study.
Living For God Despite The World's Faithlessness - John 7:1-13

Jesus Christ remained in the perfect will of God, labouring, living for God, loving the people with the love of God, focusing on His mission, despite their faithlessness.

John 7:2,8,10,11,37. Our study today revolves around the FEAST OF THE JEWS, the FEAST OF TABERNACLE. The feast was commanded and required by our Heavenly Father.

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We need to understand what the feast was and what the people were supposed to do: Leviticus 23:34
- The feast is unto the Lord
- The feast will be on for seven days
- It must be an holy convocation, no secular work or hard labour, it is not a carnal celebration but to remember and worship God, to read, teach and hear the word of God. No worldly amusements.
- Deuteronomy 16:13-15. The feast is to take place after reaping and harvest, with much rejoicing in the entire household.

- 31:10. All Israel are to appear before God, in a place He has chosen. No one was to be exempted. Not time for vacation, no absenteeism. The feast must be unto the Lord. Reading the totality of the word of God, nothing must be exempted.

- Deuteronomy 16:13. Children are not left out, they must also attend the feast of tabernacle.
Between this time and the New Testament were thousands of years, yet, Jesus kept the feast. Some today will complain that they can no longer attend the church programmes, retreats, because they have attended them for years. We need God's grace to be faithful, consistent and do the right things before Him.

Zechariah 14:16. All, including the nations that were opposed to the Israelites, and have now come to the knowledge of God were to be at the feast. This shows that we must invite sinners, enemies to church programmes so that they would be saved.
Zechariah 14: 17. There shall be serious repercussions for those who refuse to go up to worship God at the feast.

Zechariah 14:20-Holiness unto the Lord shall be written on the vessels in the house of God.
Nahum 1:15-The Israelites are expected to keep the solemn feasts, and perform their vows to God. Same is expected of us, we are expected to make ourselves available in the presence of God.
Revelations 19:6-8-To partake of the feast at the MARRIAGE SUPPER OF THE LAMB, we need to put on the garments of holiness and righteousness. This is the feast we believers are looking forward to.

In the New Testament times, some of the Jews just attended the feasts, they have lost the meaning and purposes of the feasts. We must attend every church programme meaningfully: to meet with God and be blessed. 


 After these things Jesus walked in Galilee . . . Why did Jesus stay back in Galilee?
The people were more receptive to the word of God, whereas His own people of Judaea were hostile and unbelieving. There were also threats to the safety of Jesus.

Luke 13:31-33. A Pharisee, out of concern came to tell Jesus to depart; otherwise, Herod would kill Him. He was not daunted. He continued with great courage. His courage redeemed and saved humanity. What if He chickened out? We all would be lost. He did not allow the threats to stop Him.
John 7:25-26. Some people marveled at the boldness with which He speaks, despite the plot to kill Him.

John 7:30-31. But no one was able to lay hands on Him because His time was not yet come. He was bold, He didn't hide Himself somewhere, quaking with fear.
Luke 1:6-7. Zechariah and his wife, Elizabeth kept serving God despite their state of childlessness. At the end, they were blessed with a special and unique son. We should also serve God, no matter what we are going through.

John 7:2-5. His relatives rejected Him, telling Him off. They did not believe on Him. Jesus himself said in Matthew 10:36 that a man's foes, antagonists are those of His own household. But if we keep on doing the right things, people will ultimately believe on us.
His brethren believed on Him later, Acts 1:14.

John 7:10. Jesus knew God commanded attendance to the feast but He worked with His own timetable, not with that of the people around Him. God has a time and destiny for everyone of us.

John 7:14- Jesus went up into the temple and taught. That was why He came to the world.
John 7:37- The feast was supposed to hold for seven days. Jesus stayed till the last day of the feast, and no one was able to do anything to Him. When we go for programmes, we must ensure that we stay till the end of the programmes.

Some people claim to be courageous and do risky, destructive, deadly and damnable things, thereby endangering their lives. This is not of God. As for Jesus, He was bent on giving salvation to the people by completing the redemptive and restorative work. He was responsive to the call of God to seek and save the lost. This was why He dared to be up and about, doing what He came to do.

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The real reason why the Jews were angry is that their works were evil.
Jesus is not the son of Joseph, as His siblings were, but He is the Son of God, so they are not the same. Some people hate the truth, that sinners will perish. They just don't want to hear it.
I Kings 22:5-8. Ahab hated Micah, so also do sinners hate truthful and holy people. People say, majority carry the day. Not so with God, one with God is majority as in the case of Micah against the other false prophets.
Amos 5:10- People hate him that rebukes sin.
Proverbs 1:29- Fools hate knowledge and all those that preach the word of salvation.
Proverbs 8:36- All that hate God love death.
Mark 6:20, 18- Herod/Herodias did not take the rebuke of John the Baptist kindly. They were sinners not willing to repent. They killed John at the end.

John 15:18- If we were the world's, the world would love us, but because we are not of the world, they hate us. They hate the
- Light, truth, knowledge,
- The word of God,
- Call to repentance,
- Narrow way that leads to eternal life
- Conviction that leads to conversion.

John 8:9-11- Anytime they were doing religious duties, they were always happy. They were not converted, but judging another. They were not willing to repent, whereas, the woman they accused before Jesus was willing to. They finally went away one by one due to guilt.
They closed their eyes to the salvation of God, John13:15. Jesus told His disciples to do exactly as He has done.

John 3:19-20- Men love darkness more than light because their deeds were evil, lest their deeds be exposed.

Jesus was (and is) wise. He knew the people were looking for  Him, so He went to the feast quietly, not sounding an herald ahead of Him. We should learn from this. We should mind our business, go about our duties quietly. Proverbs 22:3; 27:12. A wise man foresees evil and hides himself, but the foolish pass on and is punished.
Matthew 10:16. Don't deliberately put yourself in the jaws of danger. We are enjoined to be wise as a serpent and as gentle as a dove.

Though Jesus was wise in hiding from evil, yet, He finished His assignment, John 4:34; 5:36. So, in the process of being over-careful, we might abandon the work of God. We should strike a meaningful balance.

17:4. Jesus always find a way to do the work, thus, He finished the work committed to Him. Heavenly wisdom will always find ways to do God's work.
19:30. Jesus said, It Is Finished.

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John 7:11-13. Some said Jesus was a good man; others said He was a deceiver. The latter never got close enough to Him to know who He was. The former were afraid to talk about Him openly for fear of the Jews.

Fear is dangerous, deadly. No matter the truth you know, fear will keep you from doing God's will.
Proverb 29:25. The fear of men brings a snare. How do we crush the fear of man? We should put our trust in the Lord.

The fear of the Jews which believed on Jesus:
1. Fear of losing their places in the synagogues. Synagogues that were no longer useful, a den of robbers. They gave no word of salvation to the congregation; they even hid the truth of God's word from them.
2. Fear of criticism by blind leaders
3. Fear of being rejected by castaway reprobates
4. Fear of people who were lost already.

Hebrews11:27. By faith Moses forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of Pharaoh. He left all the wealth and privileges of the Palace; he endured as seeing Him who is invisible. God will take care of us. If we are sick, He will heal us. We must not fear rats, cockroaches. We are free to be soul winners, evangelists, Jesus is by our side, we are more than conquerors.

- May God keep us in the center of His will
- May He keep our father in the Lord firmly standing till the end. Amen.

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