My dear brother, Esher, always refers to me as a Berean. A huge part of that searching the scriptures to me is to learn what the Hebrew or Greek word used was and what it meant to those hearing it. When we begin to see and hear the scriptures through the culture of Jesus, we begin to receive a greater understanding of what was really being said and it’s application. More importantly, we can then hear what the disciples heard. Or, as in many cases, what they didn’t hear, but what was said.
Just as you and I can get so familiar with something that we miss important details, this was also the case with the disciples. Jesus was always revealing Himself to them, but yet they weren’t comprehending that He was the Messiah. More importantly, they didn’t understand how that affected their lives.
Have you allowed the Word of God to change your life? I mean, really transform it. Change the way you think, the way you speak, the way you act, the choices you make, maybe even the way you dress and talk? Don’t get stuck on the dress. Let me give an example that might better give understanding. Amy Carmichael was a missionary in India who opened up orphanages for the “throw away” children. She would even go to the temples to rescue children so they wouldn’t be sacrificed. God used her powerfully in His work. But she tells a story, at the beginning of her ministry, of she and a friend visiting a lady who was ill and in need of Jesus. They went to her home and shared Jesus with her and the lady was ready to give her heart to the Lord, but when she saw the fur gloves that Amy wore she became distracted. Amy described this as a heartbreaking lesson and one she never forgot. From that day forward she dressed as the culture dressed so that no attention could be brought to herself, nor cause any distraction away from Jesus. This illustration gives us a very real application to this passage, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33)
Jesus was telling His disciples, I am the genuine and real Son of God. Others may look good and sound good, but I am the only One, true to the Word of God. Search your scriptures, do your homework, it is I. I am the only way to My Father. He loves you so much, He created You to be in relationship with Him. Because of that great love, He sent Me to you, so listen carefully, I am sharing with you the true way not only to eternal life, but how to live and teach others the true way to live.
If Jesus had only said “I am the vine”, it would have meant the same to us, but Jesus was making sure the disciples understood that He was the “real, incarnate, Son of God”, the one they were looking for according to the Scriptures. He was warning them that no matter what opposition and how many scriptures the Pharisees might quote, be alert and be able to discern the truth, and the truth only comes through Me.
Beloved, do you take the teachings, the sermons, the books you read and allow the truth to reveal itself? Are you fed only by going to church or listening to online preachers? That is not enough! Let me say that again, IT IS NOT ENOUGH!!!! Unless you are also in the Word, one on one with THE One, and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal the secrets of the scriptures to you, you are missing the greatest opportunity in the world. This is where you will meet and fall in love with the Lord. This is where you learn He wants to call you friend. This is where you learn how special you are to Him. This is also where He shares with you the desires of His heart for you. This is where transformation happens. This is the same opportunity the disciples had. The Lord is speaking to you the same words He spoke to the disciples. Are you listening? Are you taking in every word and taking it captive? Are you allowing the true light to expose the darkness within you? Are you becoming so sensitive that you are hearing the Father’s heart?
That is my prayer for you, dear one. Allow the Spirit to open the eyes of your heart and be transformed!
Dear Lord, there is so much in this passage that You are wanting us to understand, but I thank You for starting with the truth and warning that what Jesus is teaching is THE TRUTH. It is only through Him can we live and breathe and have our being! We can do nothing apart from Him! We don’t even know what You want us to do unless we live out the Matthew 6:33, seek Jesus and follow in His righteousness and You will provide for our every need! I bow before You today in great wonder and awe of how much You love us! Amen.