Friday, August 07, 2015

What God wills He will do

Sun shining through clouds
" 'I will raise him up at the last day' " - Photo -
TODAY'S SPECIAL: John 6:36-51

" ' And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life and I will raise him up at the last day.' " John 6:40

When I became a Jesus-follower as a child of eight, my mother, anticipating doubts I might have, gave me Jesus' words in John 6:37 as a verse of assurance: " 'All that the Father gives me will come to Me. And the one who comes to Me, I will by no means cast out.' "

It uses one of the forms of "will"—a word we find eight times in today's reading (at least "will" is used in the NKJV). The repetition is enough to get one's attention!

The two forms of "will" used here are:
1. "Will" as a verb. It means to decide on, choose, resolve upon as an action or course, to determine. "Will" appears as a verb twice in John 6:37, and once in each of John 6:40 (the second "will"), and John 6:44.

2. "Will" as a noun. In the original text it's the Greek word thelema

1] What one wishes or has determined shall be done:
a] of the purpose of God to bless mankind through Christ.
b] of what God wishes to be done by us of commands and precepts.
2] Will, choice, inclination, desire pleasure.
In our reading we find this form of "will" used twice in John 6:38, once in John 6:39 and  John 6:40 (the first "will").

All these "will"s hold some wonderful promises for us:

1. The Father gives the Son individuals - "all" and "the one," which He (the Father) draws. In other words, God initiates the attraction between the individual and Jesus - John 6:37, 44.

2. When those individuals come to Jesus, He accepts them - John 6:37.

3. Jesus' will (wish, purpose, choice) is the same as God's. They want, choose and desire the same thing - John 6:38.

4. God (and Jesus) want all those He has given to the Son to be saved and resurrected (John 6:39).

5. God (and Jesus) want those who see and believe in the Son to have everlasting life (John 6:40).

6. These people will be raised or brought back to life on the last day, and live on through eternity - John 6:40,50,51.

This can be a comfort, a challenge, and an encouragement to us:

It is a comfort to know that our attraction to Jesus is not of our own initiative but God's, and that Jesus accepts all who come to Him; He doesn't turn anyone away (John 6:44, 37).

It's challenging in that our will continues to be part of this process. We have seen Jesus with the eyes of faith and have believed in Him, but need to continue to be taught by God, and to daily "eat" Jesus the bread (John 6:40, 44, 50).

It's encouraging because no matter how bad or good things are down here this life is not all there is. Ahead there is a "last day," a day of raising up, and a life that lasts forever (John 6:39, 40, 50, 51).

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You that You have willed to draw me and keep me. Help me to continue to believe in You and "eat" You as daily spiritual food. Amen.

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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