John 12:44 Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. 45 The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.
47 “If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48 There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. 49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”
Big Idea: Obeying Jesus is obeying God.
The Gospel of John deals more with what Jesus said during the passion week rather than Christ’s actions like the Synoptic Gospels. This passage also marks the general end of Christ teaching the crowds. From here on out, he focuses on the disciples. So this is effectively the end of his public teaching ministry. It is his final call to action. It assumes that the hearer is aware of what Jesus had been teaching and saying over the past 3 years. Of his stance on the what God’s commands are.
For us, we tend of think of Jesus as God first and as a man second. But the hearers here would have known him as a man. They would have seen him walking around, living a perfectly normal life. But his words and his actions would have made him stand out. They would have marked him as a prophet at the least. Many believed him when he said that he was a light in the darkness, that was a reflection of the one who sent him. But what made Christ different from all the other prophets was that he hadn’t come to judge them. Nearly every prophet in the Bible had a message of condemnation. They were sent by God to judge His people when they were disobediently breaking the law.
But Christ came to fulfill the law. He came not to judge those who break the law, but to offer hope to them, to take their place before the judge. This is why we are to love others. Because our savior does.
Application: This is basically the application portion of Christ’s entire ministry. If you love him, you love God. If you love him, then obey his commandments. Love your neighbor as yourself. If you aren’t obeying his commandments, if you don’t love your neighbor, then you don’t love Jesus. This all sounds so simple, and it is. But it is still impossible for imperfect people to love perfectly. But all of that will change by the end of the week. We will have hope, and a new heart. We are given the Holy Spirit so that we can love others and obey Jesus’ commands. Spend time in prayer today and listen to the Holy Spirit. Listen for convictions of selfishness and pride. Listen for opportunities to serve and obey our Lord, and enjoy the hope of our salvation!