Monday, June 24 2024

Bible Reading for: May 31

John 8:12–38

Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Way. The Truth will set you free from the power of sin if you abide in the Truth.

I think one of the most abused and misused quotes in the history of mankind is found in today’s reading. Have you heard “the truth will set you free”? People often use this to mean that if you gather the right information, you will be set free from ignorance. Others use it as if knowledge will set you free from oppression. As with most effective lies, these beliefs have elements of truth in them, but a partial truth is still a lie. This quote refers to one specific and crucial truth. It also refers to freedom from one specific oppression.

John 8:31-32 ESV
“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.'”

So, you will know the truth if you abide in Jesus’ Word. Notice He didn’t say if you abide in God’s Word. Remember the beginning of this book written by John? “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). Jesus’ Word and the Word of God are one and the same. Abiding in Jesus’ Word is abiding in Him. In fact, He says just that later in this book.

John 15:4 ESV
“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.”

John 15:7 ESV
“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”

Chapter 15 of John is chockfull of the word “abide”. Jesus drilled into the disciples their need to “abide” in Him. Jesus is the Word become flesh. To abide in the Word of God, is to abide in the Word of Christ, is to abide in Jesus Himself. What does this word abide mean? Well, in this context the word abide means to remain in place or to stay. The Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary provides the following definitions:

1    : to wait for : await

2    a
: to endure without yielding : withstand

b
: to bear patiently : tolerate “cannot abide such bigots”

3    : to accept without objection “will abide your decision”

1    : to remain stable or fixed in a state

2    : to continue in a place : sojourn synonym

1    : to conform to “abide by the rules”

2    : to acquiesce in “will abide by your decision”

Merriam-Webster, I. (2003). Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary. (Eleventh ed.). Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, Inc.

To abide in Christ means to live with Him; to dwell with Him; to continue in right relationship with Him. You do that when the focus of your life is His glory. You do that when you live by His Word. You see being saved by Christ means that His Word is written on your heart. His death on the cross has set you free from sin. Under sin you are condemned to death; you sit on death row waiting for that long lonely walk down the hall toward oblivion. Not only does His death on the cross free you from your sentence of death, but He frees you from the lure of sin, the pull of sin, the power of sin. You are not only free of the ultimate consequence of your sin, but you are empowered to go and sin no more. Those whom Jesus frees are free indeed!

Brothers, Jesus has set you free! Now abide in Him! Live in His Word! Never forget the truth!

Victorem Vivere! (Live Victorious!)

Your brother and servant in Christ,
Bill

Dying to self, living to serve!

Alternate Reading Plans
Bible Order: Nehemiah 13 – Esther 3
Chronological Order: Psalms 119:1-88
Old Testament Only: 2 Kings 1–3

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