Alumni Bible Study

A Bible study initially set up for alumni of the Senior Sunday School Class at the First United Methodist Church of Lufkin, Texas. It is our hope and our prayer that this study touches the hearts of those who participate and helps spread the love and grace of Our Lord and God. All who want to learn more about God are welcome

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Location: lufkin, Texas, United States

I am a Christian family man, Lay Pastor and writer from Deep East Texas. I love life, and I enjoy working with young people. I have published two books; "A Small Mind Among Tall Trees" and "God If You Are Not Too Busy, Can You Give Me a Hand". If you want to obtain a copy drop me an e-mail or go to or barnesand . I have been a salesman, cowman and athlete in my past. I still have a strong sense of humor and am not afraid to use it.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

John 10:19-30

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

19At these words the Jews were again divided. 20Many of them said, "He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?"

21But others said, "These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?"

The Unbelief of the Jews
22Then came the Feast of Dedicationa]'> at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23and Jesus was in the temple area walking in Solomon's Colonnade. 24The Jews gathered around him, saying, "How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ,b]'> tell us plainly."

25Jesus answered, "I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father's name speak for me, 26but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. 27My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than allc]'>; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. 30I and the Father are one."

The people are divided. Some think he is crazy, some think he is the messiah. (There is a fine line between insanity and genius.) The ones who think he is crazy can't believe. The others flat out ask if he is the Messiah. Jesus responds by telling them He has already answered that question, (in the affirmative,) but their lack of faith prevents them believing. Again he uses a sheep metaphor, and closes by saying that He and God, (His Father,) are one.


1. Do we find it difficult to accept things we don't understand?

2. If you were around during the Disciples time, would you think Jesus was God, or crazy?

3. What will happen now that Jesus announces he is God again? (and what else do we stone?)

Prayer- Dear Lord, Help us show our beliefs as we work in our world. Strengthen us and be with us always, even when we are far from our normal home and fellowship. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

John 10:1-18

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our minds and open our hearts and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
The Shepherd and His Flock
1"I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. 3The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger's voice." 6Jesus used this figure of speech, but they did not understand what he was telling them.

7Therefore Jesus said again, "I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. 8All who ever came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.a]'> He will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

11"I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

14"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father."

Christ is our Shepherd. This is wonderful and very true comparison to real life. Jesus says a shepherd would not enter his pen over the sides but use a gate, only a thief would enter over the sides. Christ is the gate-we are the sheep. we enter through him. My variation is that a cow man will not cut his fences to enter his pastures, we use gates,over and over. The rustler cuts the wire and enters the pasture by secret. I understand these verses.

So, we say that Jesus is our Shepard. What does a shepherd do? He takes care of his flock, his herd, his mob. In this illustration the shepherd is the owner of the sheep. The sheep are more than his job-they are his life. The shepherd will do what ever it takes to protect His herd. Unlike the hired man, when danger comes the shepherd will risk his life to protect the herd. The hired hand may say "that's not in my job description," and run away. The shepherd has too much invested.

Jesus is our Shepherd-we are his sheep. When evil comes He will protect us. He uses the gate, (himself,) for us to enter the pastures and pens, which is heaven. Jesus did lay down his life to protect us. He gave up his life that we might live, and live through Him.


1. Why would a thief climb the walls of the pen? Who may be a thief?

2.What is the difference between a shepherd and someone watching the sheep?

3. If Christ is our shepherd, why would we fear evil?

Prayer- Dear Lord, thank You for sending Your Son to watch over us as our Shepard. Help us feel that peace that comes from You. Go-Fight-Win. Amen

Monday, March 29, 2010

John 9:18-34

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

18The Jews still did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight until they sent for the man's parents. 19"Is this your son?" they asked. "Is this the one you say was born blind? How is it that now he can see?"

20"We know he is our son," the parents answered, "and we know he was born blind. 21But how he can see now, or who opened his eyes, we don't know. Ask him. He is of age; he will speak for himself." 22His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews, for already the Jews had decided that anyone who acknowledged that Jesus was the Christa]'> would be put out of the synagogue. 23That was why his parents said, "He is of age; ask him."

24A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. "Give glory to God,b]'>" they said. "We know this man is a sinner."

25He replied, "Whether he is a sinner or not, I don't know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!"

26Then they asked him, "What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?"

27He answered, "I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples, too?"

28Then they hurled insults at him and said, "You are this fellow's disciple! We are disciples of Moses! 29We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don't even know where he comes from."

30The man answered, "Now that is remarkable! You don't know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. 31We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly man who does his will. 32Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. 33If this man were not from God, he could do nothing."

34To this they replied, "You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!" And they threw him out.

Spiritual Blindness
35Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, "Do you believe in the Son of Man?"

36"Who is he, sir?" the man asked. "Tell me so that I may believe in him."

37Jesus said, "You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you."

38Then the man said, "Lord, I believe," and he worshiped him.

39Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind."

40Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, "What? Are we blind too?"

41Jesus said, "If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.

The saga of the blind man continues. In the last lesson we learned that Jesus healed a blind man who had been without sight from birth. Jesus did this on the Sabbath, and because he had made mud that he used on the mans eyes, he had violated Jewish law by working on the sabbath.Now the interrogation begins.

First; the Pharisee's wanted to make sure the man was really blind, (it could have been a trick, a well thought out stunt.) They call in the mans parents to ask them. They admit that the man was born blind but were so scared of being excommunicated they would not share if he could see or not."He is of age-ask him." Do we find it difficult to see the truth today if it may cost us ridicule or social standing?

The Man is brought back in and grilled once more. If confesses that he can see because of the miracle that Jesus had performed. The pharisees blame him for sinning and excommunicate him. Jesus hears about this and ministers to him. Re-read vs. 40-41. The Pharisees have visual ability but are blind to the truth.

We fall into the same traps. we can become so jaded to the world that we miss real miracles. We want to see proof, we become driven to prove miracles are hoaxes. Why? Most of us have pretty good physical vision, how is our spiritual vision?


1. Why did the parents insist that the pharisees ask their son if he could now see?

2. How did the pharisees justify the miracle?

3. What did Jesus mean when he said "For judgement I have come into this world, so that the blind may see and those who see will become blind."

Prayer- Lord, open our eyes that we may see all of the vision You have for us. Give us the wisdom and strength to share that vision with others. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

John 9:1-17

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

John 9

Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind
1As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"

3"Neither this man nor his parents sinned," said Jesus, "but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life. 4As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. 5While I am in the world, I am the light of the world."

6Having said this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man's eyes. 7"Go," he told him, "wash in the Pool of Siloam" (this word means Sent). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.

8His neighbors and those who had formerly seen him begging asked, "Isn't this the same man who used to sit and beg?" 9Some claimed that he was.
Others said, "No, he only looks like him."
But he himself insisted, "I am the man."

10"How then were your eyes opened?" they demanded.

11He replied, "The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see."

12"Where is this man?" they asked him.
"I don't know," he said.

The Pharisees Investigate the Healing
13They brought to the Pharisees the man who had been blind. 14Now the day on which Jesus had made the mud and opened the man's eyes was a Sabbath. 15Therefore the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. "He put mud on my eyes," the man replied, "and I washed, and now I see."

16Some of the Pharisees said, "This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath."
But others asked, "How can a sinner do such miraculous signs?" So they were divided.

17Finally they turned again to the blind man, "What have you to say about him? It was your eyes he opened."
The man replied, "He is a prophet."

Close. Jesus continues to do miracles and teach. He and his disciples come upon a man blind from birth. The Disciples wonder whose sin made the man blind, his or his parents. This shows the ancient thoughts that God punished people by doing bad things to them. Jesus tells them neither; the man has been blind so that Jesus can heal him. Jesus proceeds to make some mud, puts it on the mans bad eyes and presto! he can see!

The man's neighbors did not recognize the former blind man. When he finally convinced them he was the man he told them of the miracle. The People wanted to meet this guy, but Jesus had slipped away. The trouble was just beginning. Jesus did this miracle on the Sabbath, again. I really think Jesus did some of these miracle on the Sabbath to make a point. It did upset the pharisees and they began to investigate.


1. Why do we think God is punishing people when they have health issues?

2. Why didn't the neighbors recognize the man?

3. Why would Jesus continue to work miracles on the Sabbath? Does he still?

Prayer- Lord, Thank you for all the miracles you do, no matter when you do them Help us recognize. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

John 8:31-59

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen
The Children of Abraham
31To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

33They answered him, "We are Abraham's descendantsa]'> and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?"

34Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 37I know you are Abraham's descendants. Yet you are ready to kill me, because you have no room for my word. 38I am telling you what I have seen in the Father's presence, and you do what you have heard from your father.b]'>"

39"Abraham is our father," they answered.

"If you were Abraham's children," said Jesus, "then you wouldc]'> do the things Abraham did. 40As it is, you are determined to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do such things. 41You are doing the things your own father does."
"We are not illegitimate children," they protested. "The only Father we have is God himself."

The Children of the Devil
42Jesus said to them, "If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now am here. I have not come on my own; but he sent me. 43Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don't you believe me? 47He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God."
The Claims of Jesus About Himself
48The Jews answered him, "Aren't we right in saying that you are a Samaritan and demon-possessed?"

49"I am not possessed by a demon," said Jesus, "but I honor my Father and you dishonor me. 50I am not seeking glory for myself; but there is one who seeks it, and he is the judge. 51I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death."

52At this the Jews exclaimed, "Now we know that you are demon-possessed! Abraham died and so did the prophets, yet you say that if anyone keeps your word, he will never taste death. 53Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?"

54Jesus replied, "If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me. 55Though you do not know him, I know him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and keep his word. 56Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad."

57"You are not yet fifty years old," the Jews said to him, "and you have seen Abraham!"

58"I tell you the truth," Jesus answered, "before Abraham was born, I am!" 59At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.

Jesus continues his teaching, and it is starting to get ugly. He tells the crowds that they will know him and be set free from sin. Nothing-visualize crickets in the background. Instead, they tell him they are Abraham's children and have never been slave to anyone. (Hello, does the Exodus ring a bell? Even at the time they were saying this they were a conquered nation living at the whim and folly of the Roman government!)

Jesus tries to bridge their thoughts and asks them to open their minds. Sin can imprison us, if we know God, we can be released from this oppression. More crickets. Not only do people not understand the truth, they are swayed to evil. They are indignant. "Jesus claims to be greater than Abraham or the prophets," and there is my favorite, "You are less than fifty years old, how can you say you know Abraham?"

Then they say he is a Samaritan and possessed by demons. Wow! The Samaritan label was an absolute slur. Remember, Samaritans were looked down on by the Jews. This still happens today. Any denomination that has social principles is a cover for communists , same deal. I am not saying that Glen Beck is evil, but the comparison is spot on.

These verses end with the people wanting to stone Jesus. Good crowd gone horribly bad. What happened? As long as Jesus heals, we are all "hey Jesus!", but when He starts to meddle in our lives. I have a confession. I had never really understood these verses until today. The main reason is because I don't think I had really read them. That is why we study continually. I always thought that John 8:32 was kind of an at-a-boy, now I see that it was a challenge. Jesus challenges us daily. One of my biggest faults is that I think I know it all. In fact- I don't! I am not God. I am not Jesus. I am not omnipresent. Luckily, I know God. Sometimes I seek God's advice and use His knowledge in my life. Sometimes.


1. What is the Truth? What is it that en-slaves us?

2. Whose children are you?

3. Are there days where you want to throw rocks at Jesus? What do you do?

Prayer- Dear Lord, I am sorry. I am sorry that there are times when I no longer listen for You but lash out against You. Help us, give us the patience to listen and act as You would have us act. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

John 8:12-30

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
The Validity of Jesus' Testimony
12When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

13The Pharisees challenged him, "Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid."

14Jesus answered, "Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid, for I know where I came from and where I am going. But you have no idea where I come from or where I am going. 15You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one. 16But if I do judge, my decisions are right, because I am not alone. I stand with the Father, who sent me. 17In your own Law it is written that the testimony of two men is valid. 18I am one who testifies for myself; my other witness is the Father, who sent me."

19Then they asked him, "Where is your father?"

"You do not know me or my Father," Jesus replied. "If you knew me, you would know my Father also." 20He spoke these words while teaching in the temple area near the place where the offerings were put. Yet no one seized him, because his time had not yet come.

21Once more Jesus said to them, "I am going away, and you will look for me, and you will die in your sin. Where I go, you cannot come."

22This made the Jews ask, "Will he kill himself? Is that why he says, 'Where I go, you cannot come'?"

23But he continued, "You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am the one I claim to be,a]'> you will indeed die in your sins."

25"Who are you?" they asked.

"Just what I have been claiming all along," Jesus replied. 26"I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is reliable, and what I have heard from him I tell the world."

27They did not understand that he was telling them about his Father. 28So Jesus said, "When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am the one I claim to be and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. 29The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him." 30Even as he spoke, many put their faith in him.

Jesus really turns up his preaching, and, of course, the people have a very difficult time understanding. The people at Jesus time were used to very literal preaching. If he said he was the light of the world, they thought he was telling them he was one of the lamps that illuminated the temple, and that was crazy talk.

The pharisees did not help, (do things that go against Jesus ever help?) as they tried to disprove the things Jesus was saying to the crowds. Sometimes all someone has to do is plant doubt, then people don't know what is truth and what is fiction. As Jesus talks about His Father they asked "who is your father? and where is he now?"

After Jesus told the people that he was going to a place they could not come, the Pharisees concluded that he was suicidal, which of course is a big sin in Jewish law. Jesus was willing to give Himself up for us so they we do not go to hell, that is what is so ironic about this. In spite of the heckling from the leaders, many believed.


1. What does Jesus mean when He says He is the light of the world?

2. Do we really know who Jesus is?

3. Do we, as humans, still try to confuse our world about the Truth?

Prayer- Dear Lord, Give us the patience and discernment to truly understand You and what You want us to do. Help us spread the truth about Your love and grace. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Monday, March 22, 2010

John 7:53,8:1-11

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

53Then each went to his own home.

John 8

1But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4and said to Jesus, "Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?" 6They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her." 8Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

9At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?"

11"No one, sir," she said.
"Then neither do I condemn you," Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."

Jesus is going home when the mob brings the woman who had been caught committing adultery, (who about the guy she was committing with, did he get away?) The mob asked Jesus what they should do with her, (think Monty Python,) and this was a trap the leaders wanted to use against Jesus latter.

Jesus bent down and started to write in the dirt. Some scholars believe he was writing the sins of each of the men in the mob, (did I forget to mention the mob was all men-ala Monty Python?) Jesus told them that who ever is without sin can chunk the first rock, and one by one-starting with the eldest, the mob left.

The last verse is very important. Jesus asks the woman where are her accusers and she says they left. Jesus does not accuse, but tells her to leave...and stop her sin. He does not give her a pass forever, he forgives her and gives instruction on her future. This is how God acts. He can and does forgive our sins but wants us to change. God expects us to try to live a life that shows the world His love. He understands that sometimes we will stumble, but He does require us to repent and sin no more.


1. What did the mob expect Jesus to do?

2. Why was it important for Jesus to defuse the mob?

3. Do we get a free pass when we accept Jesus?

Prayer- Dear Lord, Thank you for forgiveness. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to do the right things and forgiving us when we fall short. Give us the strength and determination to continue to try. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

John 7:32-52

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

32-34The Pharisees, alarmed at this seditious undertow going through the crowd, teamed up with the high priests and sent their police to arrest him. Jesus rebuffed them: "I am with you only a short time. Then I go on to the One who sent me. You will look for me, but you won't find me. Where I am, you can't come."

35-36The Jews put their heads together. "Where do you think he is going that we won't be able to find him? Do you think he is about to travel to the Greek world to teach the Jews? What is he talking about, anyway: 'You will look for me, but you won't find me,' and 'Where I am, you can't come'?"

37-39On the final and climactic day of the Feast, Jesus took his stand. He cried out, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Rivers of living water will brim and spill out of the depths of anyone who believes in me this way, just as the Scripture says." (He said this in regard to the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were about to receive. The Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.)

40-44Those in the crowd who heard these words were saying, "This has to be the Prophet." Others said, "He is the Messiah!" But others were saying, "The Messiah doesn't come from Galilee, does he? Don't the Scriptures tell us that the Messiah comes from David's line and from Bethlehem, David's village?" So there was a split in the crowd over him. Some went so far as wanting to arrest him, but no one laid a hand on him.

45That's when the Temple police reported back to the high priests and Pharisees, who demanded, "Why didn't you bring him with you?"

46The police answered, "Have you heard the way he talks? We've never heard anyone speak like this man."

47-49The Pharisees said, "Are you carried away like the rest of the rabble? You don't see any of the leaders believing in him, do you? Or any from the Pharisees? It's only this crowd, ignorant of God's Law, that is taken in by him—and damned."

50-51Nicodemus, the man who had come to Jesus earlier and was both a ruler and a Pharisee, spoke up. "Does our Law decide about a man's guilt without first listening to him and finding out what he is doing?"

52-53But they cut him off. "Are you also campaigning for the Galilean? Examine the evidence. See if any prophet ever comes from Galilee."

Then they all went home.

Jesus has made the religious rulers, (the pharisees) mad. He is preaching that he is the Messiah, so they send the police to arrest him. He disappears and the people start to grumble. Has he gone to teach the Greek?(gentiles.) Is he a prophet? Is he the Messiah?

The theme of "can the Messiah, (or anything good,) come from Galilee" is continued. Galilee is a very poor part of the country. This would be similar to "can anything good come from Mississippi?" Even worse. Some of the crowd remembers that the prophet predicted the Messiah would come from David, from Bethlehem.

The police do not arrest Jesus and the leaders are hot. Nicodemus, (who has already met Jesus, remember?) asks why are the police trying to arrest Jesus without going through due process. Remember, the Jews had very strict laws on how to live and how to do anything, including how to try people. The leaders, who wanted these laws followed to the letter, were not following the laws when it came to Jesus. For this observation Nick is slandered. "Are you too from Galilee?"


1. Why did the leaders send in the police?

2. What did the people say?

3. What did Jesus tell the people on the last day?

Prayer- Lord, help us go throughout our world and SHOW that world who You are by what we do. Let our actions speak for you during this time of lent. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

John 7:14-32

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
Could It Be the Messiah?
14-15With the Feast already half over, Jesus showed up in the Temple, teaching. The Jews were impressed, but puzzled: "How does he know so much without being schooled?"

16-19Jesus said, "I didn't make this up. What I teach comes from the One who sent me. Anyone who wants to do his will can test this teaching and know whether it's from God or whether I'm making it up. A person making things up tries to make himself look good. But someone trying to honor the one who sent him sticks to the facts and doesn't tamper with reality. It was Moses, wasn't it, who gave you God's Law? But none of you are living it. So why are you trying to kill me?"

20The crowd said, "You're crazy! Who's trying to kill you? You're demon-possessed."

21-24Jesus said, "I did one miraculous thing a few months ago, and you're still standing around getting all upset, wondering what I'm up to. Moses prescribed circumcision—originally it came not from Moses but from his ancestors—and so you circumcise a man, dealing with one part of his body, even if it's the Sabbath. You do this in order to preserve one item in the Law of Moses. So why are you upset with me because I made a man's whole body well on the Sabbath? Don't be nitpickers; use your head—and heart!—to discern what is right, to test what is authentically right."

25-27That's when some of the people of Jerusalem said, "Isn't this the one they were out to kill? And here he is out in the open, saying whatever he pleases, and no one is stopping him. Could it be that the rulers know that he is, in fact, the Messiah? And yet we know where this man came from. The Messiah is going to come out of nowhere. Nobody is going to know where he comes from."

28-29That provoked Jesus, who was teaching in the Temple, to cry out, "Yes, you think you know me and where I'm from, but that's not where I'm from. I didn't set myself up in business. My true origin is in the One who sent me, and you don't know him at all. I come from him—that's how I know him. He sent me here."

30-31They were looking for a way to arrest him, but not a hand was laid on him because it wasn't yet God's time. Many from the crowd committed themselves in faith to him, saying, "Will the Messiah, when he comes, provide better or more convincing evidence than this?"

Jesus had been laying low. He shows up at the temple and begins to teach, and people are listening.As He preaches the truth he tells them that there are those who want him dead. The people cry out-"you're paranoid!"

Jesus responds by by telling more truths. The crowd responds by saying "the Messiah will come from nowhere, it will not be known." Jesus then assures the crowd that they really do not know the real him. They know the boy from Nazareth-not the Son of God. Some of the crowd start to believe. Jesus has played the Messiah card publicly and there is no turning back.


1. How often do we think someone who tells the truth is nuts?

2. How well do you know Jesus?

3. Do you believe it is all a conspiracy?

Prayer- Lord- Help us show the world the Truth. Give us strength and courage to carry the name of Jesus to out friends, and our enemies. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

John 7:1-13

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

John 7

1-2 Later Jesus was going about his business in Galilee. He didn't want to travel in Judea because the Jews there were looking for a chance to kill him. It was near the time of Tabernacles, a feast observed annually by the Jews.

3-5His brothers said, "Why don't you leave here and go up to the Feast so your disciples can get a good look at the works you do? No one who intends to be publicly known does everything behind the scenes. If you're serious about what you are doing, come out in the open and show the world." His brothers were pushing him like this because they didn't believe in him either.

6-8Jesus came back at them, "Don't crowd me. This isn't my time. It's your time—it's always your time; you have nothing to lose. The world has nothing against you, but it's up in arms against me. It's against me because I expose the evil behind its pretensions. You go ahead, go up to the Feast. Don't wait for me. I'm not ready. It's not the right time for me."

9-11He said this and stayed on in Galilee. But later, after his family had gone up to the Feast, he also went. But he kept out of the way, careful not to draw attention to himself. The Jews were already out looking for him, asking around, "Where is that man?"

12-13There was a lot of contentious talk about him circulating through the crowds. Some were saying, "He's a good man." But others said, "Not so. He's selling snake oil." This kind of talk went on in guarded whispers because of the intimidating Jewish leaders.

Again I used "The Message" paraphrase for the text today. These passages are a little difficult to understand using more traditional texts. Jesus is going ton hang out in Galilee because the leaders of the church in Judea were mad at him. So he and his followers went to the festival of the booths at home. This was a multi week celebration of the exodus from Egypt, (remember Moses?) His disciples thought this would be a great opportunity to mingle and promote. The scripture say they were doing this because they didn't believe either.

Even though Jesus went to the fair, he went on the down low, and did not do the big miracle show his followers wanted. Some people began to whisper and doubt. We are no different. We want people to witness miracles so they can come to Christ even today. The big things make our witness easier, and when we have doubts, (and we all do,) we ask God for "signs" to make us feel better about our faith. It's not that we don't believe, we just need a lot of assurance.

1. Why did the disciples push Jesus to go to the fair?

2. Why were people not trusting when He finally arrived?

3. How is that different from us?

Prayer- Lord, Help us believe even when there are no great miracles or signs. Help us see the everyday miracles and make our lives signs of your wonder and majesty. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Monday, March 15, 2010

John 6:60-71

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
Many Disciples Desert Jesus
60On hearing it, many of his disciples said, "This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?"

61Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, "Does this offend you? 62What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! 63The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirita]'> and they are life. 64Yet there are some of you who do not believe." For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. 65He went on to say, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him."

66From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

67"You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve.

68Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."

70Then Jesus replied, "Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!" 71(He meant Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, who, though one of the Twelve, was later to betray him.)

This is following the body-bread, blood-life teachings. Many people who had seen miracles and had been fed, (physically and spiritually,) found this lesson too difficult . This was not just difficult to understand, (really- Jesus was going to sustain them as Moses had done with manna, but Jesus was using himself,) but it also meant that if they continued to follow, their life would get tough.

When the fair weather followers started to desert him, Jesus asked the twelve if they too wanted to leave. Simon Peter confirmed that he was in it for the long haul, as did the rest. Vs 70-71 are rather difficult as well, Jesus already knows about Judas and is foreshadowing the betrayal.


1. Why was is so difficult to accept that Jesus was the Bread of Life?

2. Are we fair weather disciples?

3. Even though he knew Judas was a betrayer, why did he bring him along?

Prayer- Lord, Give us the strength and courage to follow you all the time. Even though things may get though, we know that the final goal is more than worth any hardship we may face. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

John 6:41-59

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
41At this the Jews began to grumble about him because he said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven." 42They said, "Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, 'I came down from heaven'?"

43"Stop grumbling among yourselves," Jesus answered. 44"No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. 45It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.'a]'> Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me. 46No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father. 47I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life. 48I am the bread of life. 49Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. 50But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. 51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world."

52Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"

53Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever." 59He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.

People can get caught up in the silliest things. Jesus says he is the bread of life, so the people start to ask, "isn't he a man-just like us? How can we eat him?" The Gospel of John does not have an account of the last supper before Jesus is crucified. Yet in vs. 51-58, we can see those teachings. Jesus is the spiritual bread and wine for us. His body was broken so we can accept his life and we will be with him-FOREVER!

My challenge today, look at the world knowing that Jesus came and died for you. Observe how easy it is to live knowing that you are saved spiritually.


1. Did the people really think they had to physically eat Jesus?

2. Can we, two thousand years later, see what Jesus meant?

3. Can we live it?

Prayer- Lord, let us receive the gifts that you give us, especially the Gift of Christ. Help us live our lives spiritually awake, so we can awaken others. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

John 6:25-40

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
Jesus the Bread of Life
25When they found him on the other side of the lake, they asked him, "Rabbi, when did you get here?"

26Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. 27Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. On him God the Father has placed his seal of approval."

28Then they asked him, "What must we do to do the works God requires?"

29Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent."

30So they asked him, "What miraculous sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do? 31Our forefathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written: 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'a]'>"

32Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. 33For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world."

34"Sir," they said, "from now on give us this bread."

35Then Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. 36But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. 37All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. 38For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. 39And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 40For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day."

Sometimes we people can get caught up on physical terms. The people who are chaseing, (they all crossed the Sea of Gallalie) can't seem to grasp what Jesus offers. Jesus asks them if they are following just to get bread, like you and I would eat. There is a precedent for this. Remember, during the exudus with Moses God sent manna from heaven to feed the people. Now the Jews are looking for a similar sign, and had just witnessed the fishes and loaves miracle the day before.

Jesus tells them that he is the Bread of Life, and who partakes, (consumes, uses,) this bread will never be thirsty. Remember, he has already told the woman at the well that he is living water. The people wanted to know what they had to do to get this bread of life that would always nurture them. Jesus tells them that whoever comes to Him, will never be hungry or thirsty, because he has come down from Heaven to raise us up.


1. Why are the people following Jesus>

2. What is the Bread of Life?

3. How do we get this Bread? What will it do?

Prayer- Lord, We want the Bread of Life. We want to be able to live for and with You, and You with us. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

John 6:16-24

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
Jesus Walks on the Water
16When evening came, his disciples went down to the lake, 17where they got into a boat and set off across the lake for Capernaum. By now it was dark, and Jesus had not yet joined them. 18A strong wind was blowing and the waters grew rough. 19When they had rowed three or three and a half miles,a]'> they saw Jesus approaching the boat, walking on the water; and they were terrified. 20But he said to them, "It is I; don't be afraid." 21Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading.

22The next day the crowd that had stayed on the opposite shore of the lake realized that only one boat had been there, and that Jesus had not entered it with his disciples, but that they had gone away alone. 23Then some boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the people had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24Once the crowd realized that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus.

Jesus and his crew were tired and the Disciples decided to go to the other side of the lake. This was a trip they had made probably thousands of times, it's not much more than crossing Lake Livingston,(here in East Texas.) It was a night journey and the boats were not the boats of today. A storm rolled in and the Disciples became afraid. I have been on Sam Rayburn in a bass boat when it got stormy, I became scared as well.

Jesus appears walking on water and clams everything. The Disciples had left Jesus on the other side, now he was with them. The next morning the crowds realized that Jesus and his crew were gone, so they set out for the other side of the lake.

There are a few things to learn here. The Disciples left without Jesus. Maybe he said "go on, I'll catch up," but he was not with them. The storms came and they got scared, when he arrived things calmed down. Isn't this a little like life? Sometimes we go on with out Jesus and when storms come, we then call out for Jesus to calm things down.

Another point; when the storms came-Jesus was there! When our lives get stormy Jesus is there as well. It's okay to be scared and call out to Jesus. He is there.


1. Why did the Disciples take off that evening?

2.What effect did the sighting of Jesus have on the Disciples?

3.What did the crowd do when they realized Jesus had left?

Prayer- Lord, Thank you for always being there, in good times and during the storms. Help us remember it is alright to cry out for your calming help, and thank you for giving it. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Monday, March 08, 2010

John 6:1-15

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand
1Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), 2and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the miraculous signs he had performed on the sick. 3Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. 4The Jewish Passover Feast was near.

5When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, "Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?" 6He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.

7Philip answered him, "Eight months' wagesa]'> would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!"

8Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, spoke up, 9"Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?"

10Jesus said, "Have the people sit down." There was plenty of grass in that place, and the men sat down, about five thousand of them. 11Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish.

12When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, "Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted." 13So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten.

14After the people saw the miraculous sign that Jesus did, they began to say, "Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world." 15Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.

This is a miracle we have all heard of, in fact it is the only one mentioned in all four gospels. Let's look at this in a little different light.

When the people came and the service went long, what did Jesus do? First, he asked the disciples if they had bought enough food for everyone. That may seem kind of mean, obviously they had not, and they could never have. As Philip points out, "it would take six months wages to feed this many people. Why would Jesus ask this question when he knew the answer?

He wanted the followers to start looking at the big picture, (the cinema grande.) Jesus knew things were about to get wild, and his disciples needed to be able to think outside the box to keep up.

The boy who had some fish and bread was the hero, but Andrew could have easily keep the boys food secret to quench his own hunger. He turned over what had been given to him, and Jesus did the rest. The lunch was very basic, fish and barley loaves was a meal for poor common folks. The crowd was fed and there was enough left over to fill twelve baskets, one for each disciple.

When the crowd started to rush Jesus, we withdrew. He could have easily used these people as a military base and recruited, (with a few more miracles,) more than enough people to overthrow the Romans. That was not his goal, so he left.


1. Do you think the Disciples were mad when Jesus asked if they had prepared for the crowd?

2. What does the fishes and loaves represent?

3. Why did Jesus leave?

Prayer- Lord, Help us remember that you will provide for us always. Help us keep faith in You so that we may think in a great vision. Go-Fight-Win. Amen

Saturday, March 06, 2010

John 5:34-47

Relax, Read and Reflect
Prayer- Lord, open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

34-38"But my purpose is not to get your vote, and not to appeal to mere human testimony. I'm speaking to you this way so that you will be saved. John was a torch, blazing and bright, and you were glad enough to dance for an hour or so in his bright light. But the witness that really confirms me far exceeds John's witness. It's the work the Father gave me to complete. These very tasks, as I go about completing them, confirm that the Father, in fact, sent me. The Father who sent me, confirmed me. And you missed it. You never heard his voice, you never saw his appearance. There is nothing left in your memory of his Message because you do not take his Messenger seriously.

39-40"You have your heads in your Bibles constantly because you think you'll find eternal life there. But you miss the forest for the trees. These Scriptures are all about me! And here I am, standing right before you, and you aren't willing to receive from me the life you say you want.

41-44"I'm not interested in crowd approval. And do you know why? Because I know you and your crowds. I know that love, especially God's love, is not on your working agenda. I came with the authority of my Father, and you either dismiss me or avoid me. If another came, acting self-important, you would welcome him with open arms. How do you expect to get anywhere with God when you spend all your time jockeying for position with each other, ranking your rivals and ignoring God?

45-47"But don't think I'm going to accuse you before my Father. Moses, in whom you put so much stock, is your accuser. If you believed, really believed, what Moses said, you would believe me. He wrote of me. If you won't take seriously what he wrote, how can I expect you to take seriously what I speak?"

Jesus is explaining his ministry, and what makes it important to US. John the Baptist is important, because he is the warm up act, he is pointing the people to Jesus, and Jesus is the main event. This is why John is important, according to Jesus. The miracles are also a sign that should show the people that the Christ is coming, (or in this case-Christ is here.) The miracles are not in and of themselves the focus. The focus is on the Man who does them.

I like this translations telling of the importance of scripture. Read 39-40 again. To really get the full importance read these verses in your own bible, (if you don't use The Message as your personal bible.) Yes, scripture is important, it is important for use to read our bibles. The bibles themselves are not salvation. They are a tool to build a relationship with Christ, and that is what causes salvation.

Jesus concludes this chapter with a warning; If we do not believe in Jesus- we do not believe in God. Pretty straight forward.


1. Does Jesus say that John is important? Why or why not?

2. Should we read scripture?, (our bibles.) What is the danger Jesus warns against?

3. Does Jesus say that he is God?

Prayer- Help us keep our focus on You and Your Son. We know that all things are possible through you, help us remember that during our day to day world. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

John 5:19-33

Relax, Read, Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

What the Father Does, the Son Does
19-20So Jesus explained himself at length. "I'm telling you this straight. The Son can't independently do a thing, only what he sees the Father doing. What the Father does, the Son does. The Father loves the Son and includes him in everything he is doing.

20-23"But you haven't seen the half of it yet, for in the same way that the Father raises the dead and creates life, so does the Son. The Son gives life to anyone he chooses. Neither he nor the Father shuts anyone out. The Father handed all authority to judge over to the Son so that the Son will be honored equally with the Father. Anyone who dishonors the Son, dishonors the Father, for it was the Father's decision to put the Son in the place of honor.

24"It's urgent that you listen carefully to this: Anyone here who believes what I am saying right now and aligns himself with the Father, who has in fact put me in charge, has at this very moment the real, lasting life and is no longer condemned to be an outsider. This person has taken a giant step from the world of the dead to the world of the living.

25-27"It's urgent that you get this right: The time has arrived—I mean right now!—when dead men and women will hear the voice of the Son of God and, hearing, will come alive. Just as the Father has life in himself, he has conferred on the Son life in himself. And he has given him the authority, simply because he is the Son of Man, to decide and carry out matters of Judgment.

28-29"Don't act so surprised at all this. The time is coming when everyone dead and buried will hear his voice. Those who have lived the right way will walk out into a resurrection Life; those who have lived the wrong way, into a resurrection Judgment.

30-33"I can't do a solitary thing on my own: I listen, then I decide. You can trust my decision because I'm not out to get my own way but only to carry out orders. If I were simply speaking on my own account, it would be an empty, self-serving witness. But an independent witness confirms me, the most reliable Witness of all. Furthermore, you all saw and heard John, and he gave expert and reliable testimony about me, didn't he?

I used "The Message" paraphrase for this mornings passages. Sometimes that makes it easier to understand. The pharisees are angry at Jesus, first for healing (working) on the sabbath, and second because he is uppity and comparing himself to God. After all, they have followed the law long enough THEY should be the ones closest to God.

Jesus answers by telling them straight up that he has a real relationship with God. He is God's Son, sent to earth to do God's work. He is responsible for do the will and actions of God. Furthermore, if anyone believes with the Son, that person will be blessed with eternal life, (vs. 24.)

He goes on to tell the people that the time is coming where All will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will be alive. It is important that we understand that he is talking about EVERYBODY, not just living Jews, but everyone. He concludes by saying that all authority is not his own, but comes from God.

This can't go over well with the Jewish leaders. Not only is Jesus not saying he's sorry for doing miracles on the Sabbath, he is saying that he is truly the Son of God. That is heresy. Jesus has started the ball rolling that will end in his crucifixion. The good news is that the crucifixion of Christ is not the end of the story for us. The things he tells the pharisees are truth, and if we believe this things, He rose from the dead so that we can live.


1. What are the "greater works" Jesus is talking about in vs. 21?

2. If Jesus is doing God's work on earth, what does that mean about God's will?

3. Do you think this is what the pharisees wanted to hear? Is this what we need to hear?

Prayer- Lord, Help us remember that Jesus came to earth to do your work and provide eternal life for everybody. Give us the strength to hear and believe. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

John 5:1-18

Relax, Read and Reflect

Prayer- Lord, Open our hearts and open our minds and help us learn. Go-Fight-Win. Amen.
The Healing at the Pool
1Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for a feast of the Jews. 2Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesdaa]'> and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. 3Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.b]'> 5One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, "Do you want to get well?"

7"Sir," the invalid replied, "I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me."

8Then Jesus said to him, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk." 9At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.
The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10and so the Jews said to the man who had been healed, "It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat."

11But he replied, "The man who made me well said to me, 'Pick up your mat and walk.' "

12So they asked him, "Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?"

13The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.

14Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, "See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you." 15The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.

Life Through the Son
16So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jews persecuted him. 17Jesus said to them, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working." 18For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.
Jesus comes to Jerusalem and continues to do miracles. Near the gates of town there were some pools, basically watering troughs. People needing miracles would hang around these pools, and angles would come down and "stir the water" and whoever got in first would be healed.
As Jesus worked his way through this crowd of people he met a invalid on a mat that had been waiting for a miracle for thirty eight years. Since he had no one to throw him in the water when it became stirred, people always jumped ahead of him. Jesus asked if he wanted to be cured and the man said yes. Jesus then told the man to get up and take his mat and go home. No big show, no organ in the background, not even a prayer. The man got up, picked up his sleeping bag, and went home.
On his way home the religious leaders stopped him and told him he could not be carrying his sleeping bag, it was the Sabbath and a day of rest. The man said the Man who healed me told me to pick up and go home, so that was what he was doing. They asked who told him and he did not know, for Jesus had slipped away.
Jesus came back to the man later to tell him to stop sinning now that he was healed. The healed person ratted Jesus out to the leaders and they confronted Jesus about healing on the Sabbath. Jesus said "My Father works everyday, and I too am working." This meant that Jesus was now saying he was God, and this upset the Jewish leaders.
Sometimes we get used to things happening at particular times, we get into habits. Miracles should happen at church, or when lots of folks gather around and lay on hands. Jesus works all the time! We should be aware of this and be grateful for it.

1. How could a man wait thirty eight years for a miracle?
2. If you had to wait that long and some stranger said get up and go home, would you?
3. Why did this piss off the religious leaders so much?

Prayer- Lord, help us to see your work everyday. Give us the strength and wisdom to do God's work whenever and wherever we see the need. Go-Fight-Win. Amen