Journal Entry // April 30, 2021
Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.John 17:17 ESV
Sanctify… Purify, free from sin, set apart. Just as Jesus himself was sanctified, he prays to the Father that all those that were given to him may be sanctified as well. That his followers may walk in this world just as he did. Learning obedience through suffering. Having the Father and the Son dwell within their hearts. Driving out sin and conforming our hearts and souls to steadfastly love the Creator.
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Journal Entry // April 29, 2021
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”John 16:33 ESV
Tribulation… This is what we can expect from the world. It’s not a matter of if there will be tribulation, it is only a matter of when and to what degree. The world will most assuredly bring tribulation into my life. But Jesus has overcome the world. He does not take away the trials and adversity, but he does take away the power. The world can only go as far as Jesus allows. He doesn’t shelter me from the storms of this world. No, just as he had to walk through adversity and hardship in his life, so too do I need to walk through the struggles.
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Journal Entry // April 28, 2021
Abide in me, and I in you.John 15:4 ESV
“Abide in me” and “Abide in my love” is clearly the primary theme of this chapter in John where Jesus gives us the great picture of our relationship as a vine and branches. I am interested in his teaching about the indwelling of God with the believer. I tend to really only think about this as a one-way abiding. That the Spirit comes to dwell in my heart and my life is changed as a result. But Jesus clearly teaches that not only does God come and dwell within me, but I too am to come and dwell or abide in him.
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Journal Entry // May 8, 2022
They cried out, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.”John 19:15 ESV
I have read and heard this passage so many times over the years that it loses a lot of its force because of familiarity. This is probably true of a lot of passages, but this one today really struck me hard. I find it so simple to sit back in my 21st century modernity and look upon these chief priests with judgement and contempt. I want to measure their response with a harsh line of judgement. To be fair, their response was terrible. Yet, how is my response any different sometimes? Sure, I have not publicly decried Jesus as king and declared my allegiance solely to the earthly leadership over me. But in my heart? That is quite a different matter.
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Journal Entry // May 7, 2022
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.”John 18:36 ESV
“My kingdom is not of this world.” This is the truth that should be shaping my understanding of this present world and my place in it. The kingdom of God is not of this world. To be sure, the Lord is bringing his kingdom into this world but his kingdom is not of this world. Then why do I continually try to build my own kingdom in this world? Why do I set my every thought and emotion upon the things of this world without even a moment of pondering the vastness of God’s kingdom above. This world seduces me into the continual lie that everything I see has been and always will be. The lie that there is nothing else. The lie that I should enjoy the offerings of the world, because when I die there is nothing else. And I continually believe this lie. I too easily forget that the Kingdom of God is not of this world.
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Journal Entry // April 27, 2021
Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.John 14:23 ESV
Obedience is the natural outward inclination of a renewed and loving heart turned toward the Lord. If I truly love the Lord, then I will readily find obedience expressing itself in humble reliance upon the one I love. And the one I love, he will come and make their home with me. The Father, Son, and Spirit will make my heart his home and dwelling place.
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Journal Entry // April 26, 2021
During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him,John 13:2 ESV
Even after the heart of Judas had been deceived and he was committed to betraying Jesus, Judas spent intimate moments with Jesus. Many close fellowship times with the Lord and his fellow disciples. Known active sin being nurtured in his heart all the while spending time outwardly playing the part of follower. So much so, that the other disciples could not even conceive of the betrayal to come.
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Journal Entry // April 30, 2022
These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.John 15:11 ESV
What are these things that Jesus has spoken of to me? It is the importance of abiding in his love by obeying his commandments just as he abides in the love of the Father an obeys his commandments. The key to abiding in Christ is simply obedience. I want to overcomplicate this and focus on other good things that are also important, but if I am to abide in the love of Christ there is only obedience. How important is this principle? Abiding in the love of Christ through obedience is the source of joy in my life. Abiding in the love of Christ is the pathway of His joy being in me and consequently my joy then being full. Not just a measure of joy, but the fullness of joy. Not just the fullness of any joy, but the fullness of joy in Christ!
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Journal Entry // April 27, 2022
Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.”John 13:8 ESV
Peter in the Gospels is so often a mirror that reflects the inner thoughts and determination of my heart. He is generally the one that is not afraid to put into words the thoughts that are bouncing around in his head. This passage is no different. Jesus is demonstrating humility and the necessity of servant leadership. None of us are above the necessary role of serving others in our leading capacity, but this washing of the feet was a picture of our necessity to have a heart of repentance. Our bodies are clean if we are in Christ and have been cleansed of our sin through the washing of his blood in our life, but our feet get dirty as we continually walk in this world. We need a daily washing of our feet. We need a daily, humble repentance that keeps bringing us back to the grace and mercy of Jesus.
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Journal Entry // April 22, 2021
I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me,John 10:14 ESV
There are a lot of interesting phrases and insight that Jesus gives in this section of the Gospel, but the one that stood out to me this morning was his knowing of his sheep. This is not a general knowing like he states elsewhere about knowing what’s in the heart of man. This is a deep intimate knowledge of a person. And it’s reciprocal. We know Jesus deeply as we follow him and obey our good shepherd.
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