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John 12:44-50, Summary of Jesus’ Teaching

Tuesday, March 13

Pointing toward God

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

One of the arguments for worship planners struggling with Old Testament texts is this: The Old Testament told of an old God, a God before Jesus. Or this: The Old Testament doesn't talk about Jesus. Christian churches are often primarily christocentric -- centered on Christ. And indeed, Christians are Christians because of the divinity and works of Christ.

But there's another hue to consider. Jesus, while making waves in the world himself, was also adamant that his message came from God -- creator, holy parent, judge and lover. Consistently in all of the gospels, and John is no exception, Jesus pointed to God. Jesus was himself theocentric. Jesus didn't come to overshadow creator God. Jesus came to shed light on mystery God. To warn about judge God. To remind about ever-present God. To show how to love (and be loved by) lover God.

As for those Old Testament texts, in light of Jesus' revelations about God, we can read those texts with a renewed sense of awe and wonder. We can read in there the same God (loving, possessive, passionate, and fierce) that continues to create, judge, forgive, and love today.

Narrative Lectionary Text: John 12:44-50

Then Jesus cried aloud: “Whoever believes in me believes not in me but in him who sent me. And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me should not remain in the darkness. I do not judge anyone who hears my words and does not keep them, for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. The one who rejects me and does not receive my word has a judge; on the last day the word that I have spoken will serve as judge, for I have not spoken on my own, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment about what to say and what to speak. And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I speak, therefore, I speak just as the Father has told me.”