In this third week of 31 Days in the Gospel of John, we explored five more profiles of Jesus:
- Jesus, our freedom fighter. In John 8:32 and 8:36, we find the subject of freedom – freedom from sin and freedom in Christ. My commentary states: “Because Jesus is the truth, knowing Him brings discernment of what is true and false. The truth brings freedom from darkness, falsehood, and sin.” Jesus alone brings us freedom to know and freedom to live. As with the Samaritan woman, “Truth came and defended her and Truth sent her away free” (Susan Chamberlain Shipe, page 42). When we are met with Truth, in the Person of Jesus Christ, we will never walk away unchanged. The study presents this powerful question: Are we abiding in His freedom? Jesus desires for us to be free, truly free. “So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.”Â
- Jesus, I Am. “Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I Am!” (John 8:58, NLT). Because He is the “I am”, we are. Our identity is totally wrapped up in who He is, and we become His sons and daughters.
- Jesus, our Healer. In John Chapter 9, we find a blind man whose sight is restored by Jesus. Rather than a praise party occurring, this sparks an argument of every sort. The now seeing man is bombarded by many, and he answers their questions to the best of his ability. I am not sure I had ever noted before, but Jesus is not present through the questioning. “When Jesus heard what had happened, he found the man and asked, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” (verse 35, NLT). It was not enough for Jesus to solely restore the man’s sight. Jesus made sure the man knew the identity of the One who had healed him. Jesus was interested in the man’s spiritual healing. My commentary makes this observation: “The story ends with a splendid reversal of roles: The blind man who was assumed to be in spiritual darkness could see God’s light, whereas the Pharisees, who could see physically and were thought to be enlightened, were shown to be spiritually blind.” When did you see God’s light? When did God find you? Jesus – our Healer – both physically and spiritually.Â
- Jesus, Good Shepherd. In John 10, we see Jesus – our Shepherd, caring, committed to loving us, to the point of laying down His life for us. Not only does Jesus know us and we know Him, but that relationship is the same as the Father has with the Son and the Son with the Father. The scripture goes on to say that sheep know the voice of the shepherd and they follow Him. Knowing the voice of our Shepherd is evident in how we live our lives.
- Jesus, Friend. Lazarus was dear to Jesus. We have also been called His friends and that means we are dear to Him! Yet we find Jesus delays going to His friends. The delay of Jesus doesn’t mean He did not love his friends. It was because He loved them that He stayed put. Â “And for your sakes, I’m glad I wasn’t there, for now you will really believe” (John 11:15, NLT).There was a greater lesson to be learned than the immediate answer to their need. Jesus was glad for the delay as He knew they were about to experience a greater miracle than healing – the raising of the dead. And through this, they would truly all come to believe. Delays are not meant to be cruel or mean. We desire immediate relief from all pain. Jesus wanted to bring to life their faith. Jesus knows our belief in Him is critical to our standing firm through every crisis. When our prayers go unanswered or delayed, may we cling to Him all the more. We do not cling blindly nor for naught. We cling so that our faith grows and our lives bring Him glory.