The Gospel of John II - Lesson 6

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The New Birth John 3:1-36 (Continued)

  1. THE TESTIMONY OF JESUS (John 3:1-21) (Continued)
    1. The Provision of the New Birth (John 3:14-17) (Continued)
      1. The use of typology in scripture
        1. Definition: a type is a divinely designed object lesson or picture that anticipates a later truth, known as the antitype.
        2. Scriptural evidence for the use of types
          1. The lifting up of the brasen serpent as a type of the crucifixion of Christ (John 3:14): Note: this is only one of many designated types in the New Testament.
          2. Adam as “the figure of him that was to come” (Romans 5:14)
          3. The faults of the children of Israel as examples to us (1 Corinthians 10:6-11)
          4. The tabernacle, the priesthood, and the offerings as:
            1. Examples (Hebrews 8:5)
            2. Shadows (Hebrews 8:5; Hebrews 10:1)
            3. Figures (Hebrews 9:9)
            4. Patterns (Hebrews 9:23)
          5. The veil removed in the Old Testament (2 Corinthians 3:12-16)
        3. Classes of types found in the Bible
          1. People (Adam, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David, etc.)
          2. Events (deliverance of Noah in the ark, redemption from Egypt, passing through the Red Sea)
          3. Things (tabernacle, laver, lamb, oil, Jordan River, city of refuge)
          4. Institutions (priesthood, kingdom, the sabbath)
        4. Guidelines for the use of types
          1. True types are designed by God to be types, though some are directly indicated and others are simply obvious to the spiritually minded.
          2. Types point to something in the future. However, they are not strictly prophecy. Prophecy clearly predicts future events. Types picture them in such a way that the design can be seen only after the fulfillment (the antitype) occurs.
          3. The primary purpose of types is to illuminate or illustrate truth. Types are not to be used to establish doctrine not clearly taught elsewhere in scripture.
        5. Bible students disagree on how far to develop types. Some only use types that are identified as such in scripture. Others find typology in every detail of an Old Testament passage. Some of this typology can become quite speculative. One way to help in safely identifying types is to classify types according to clarity. Though Bible students will still disagree on how to classify the various types, the very act of classifying will help us put varying weights to different interpretations.
          1. Designated types: these are types that are clearly said to be types in scripture. See John 3:14; 1 Corinthians 5:7; 1 Corinthians 10:4; Revelation 8:3.
          2. Supported types: these types have indirect but strong evidence for their use. These types are often built from evidence found in several Bible passages.
            1. Oil as a type of the Holy Spirit. Just as a prophet was anointed with oil, so Jesus Christ was anointed with the Spirit (Isaiah 61:1).
            2. The table of showbread as a picture of the part the word of God plays in our approach to the presence of God; taken from the comparison of the word with bread (Deuteronomy 8:3)
          3. Speculative types: these types are developed by comparing certain characteristics in the type with those in the antitype. Although they are valuable in study and teaching, they do not have the scriptural backing of the other two classes of types. Often, it might be best to refer to these as parallels or resemblances in order to avoid confusing people into thinking that they have equal weight with other types.
      2. Eternal and everlasting
        1. Eternal and everlasting are synonyms. They both refer to that which endures in time without end. The following distinctions are very subtle and refer to connotation (emphasis) and not to denotation (exact meaning).
        2. Everlasting
          1. Used 93 times in the Bible; 67 times in the Old Testament and 26 times in the New Testament
          2. Emphasizes quantity: something that has no ending, duration, length without end
          3. Everlasting life or life everlasting (found 15 times in the Bible) refers to a life that will never have an end.
        3. Eternal
          1. Used 47 times in the Bible; 2 times in the Old Testament and 45 times in the New Testament
          2. Emphasizes quality: designates the special nature of that which has no end.
          3. Eternal is often used in the English language to refer to those things that have no beginning or ending (like the eternal God); everlasting usually refers only to those things that have no ending.
          4. Eternal life or life eternal (found 31 times in the Bible) refers to the quality of life possessed by one who has a unending life with prospect of spending an unending future with God.
      3. In His first coming, Christ did not come:
        1. Of Himself (John 7:28)
        2. To do His own will (John 6:38)
        3. To condemn the world (John 3:17)
        4. To judge the world (John 12:47; compare John 5:22; Acts 17:31)
    2. The Rejection of the New Birth (John 3:18-21)
      1. The condemned state of man (John 3:18)
        1. He is condemned already (John 3:18); that is, he presently exists in a state in which he stands condemned before God as guilty and worthy only of hell.
        2. The wrath of God presently abides on him (John 3:36).
        3. He is cursed because of his disobedience to the law of God (Galatians 3:10).
        4. He is dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1, 5).
        5. As such, he does not need to become lost to go to hell, but only fail to become saved.
      2. The relationship of light to darkness (John 3:19-21)
        1. The light of God came into the darkness of the world (John 3:19).
          1. The world is a place of darkness (Ephesians 6:12; 1 John 5:19).
          2. Jesus Christ is the light of the world (John 1:9; John 8:12; John 12:46).
        2. Men chose (loved) darkness in preference to the light (John 3:19).
          1. Because their deeds were evil (John 7:7)
          2. Because the light would reprove their deeds (Ephesians 5:13)
        3. Men rejected the light (John 3:20).
          1. They hated the light.
          2. They refused to come to the light.
        4. Some exceptional men choose light over darkness (John 3:21).
          1. Because their deeds are deeds of truth
          2. Because they wish their deeds to be revealed as wrought in God
      3. The application of light in our lives (John 3:19-21)
        1. Recognize the true sources of light in the world.
          1. Jesus Christ
          2. The word of God
          3. Believers (Matthew 5:14-16; Philippians 2:15)
        2. Examine your own reaction to the light.
          1. Are you drawn to it?
          2. Are you repulsed from it?
        3. Observe the secret portions of your life.
          1. The danger of secret sins (Deuteronomy 27:15; 2 Kings 17:9; Psalm 10:8; Psalm 19:12; Psalm 44:20-21; Psalm 90:8; Proverbs 9:16-18; Jeremiah 23:24; Daniel 2:22; Luke 8:17; Romans 2:16; Ephesians 5:12)
          2. Are you willing to shine the light of God on every portion of your life?
          3. Do you strive to keep your life in the light?
          4. Do you avoid secret places or times that could be special opportunities for temptation? (2 Samuel 12:11-12)
  2. THE TESTIMONY OF JOHN (John 3:22-36)
    1. The Counting of Baptisms (John 3:22-26)
      1. The baptizing of Jesus (John 3:22)
        1. In the land of Judaea
        2. In numbers exceeding John (John 4:1)
        3. Through His disciples (John 4:2); Note: What is done by the authority of Christ is as though Christ had done it directly (see 2 Corinthians 5:20).
      2. The baptizing of John (John 3:23-24)
        1. In a place of “much water” (John 3:23)
          1. Would not be a requirement for sprinkling or for pouring
          2. Would be a requirement for immersion
            1. Jesus, at His baptism, “went up straightway out of the water” (Matthew 3:16).
            2. Philip took the eunuch down into the water and they came up out of the water (Acts 8:35-39). This is totally unnecessary for sprinkling or pouring.
            3. Baptism is compared to a burial (Romans 6:3). This requires immersion.
          3. When his time was running short (John 3:24)
            1. He was not yet cast into prison.
            2. But he would be soon (Matthew 4:12).
      3. The struggles of John (John 3:25-26)
        1. A doctrinal question (John 3:25)
          1. Between John’s disciples and the Jews
          2. Concerning the doctrine of purifying – a matter of tradition and not of law (Matthew 15:1-9; Mark 7:1-16)
        2. A practical question (John 3:26)
          1. John bare witness to Jesus.
          2. Now the crowds are going to Jesus.
          3. The warning against comparison (2 Corinthians 10:12-18)
          4. The example of John in refusing to envy (Galatians 5:26; 1 Timothy 6:3-5)
            1. The example of Moses (Numbers 11:26-29)
            2. The example of Paul (Philippians 1:14-18)
    2. The Comparison of the Two (John 3:27-31)
      1. Concerning the gifts of heaven (John 3:27-28)
        1. The precept: each man received what he has from heaven (John 3:27; Romans 12:6; 1 Corinthians 4:7).
        2. The contrast (John 3:28)
          1. John was sent before the Christ as a forerunner (Mark 1:1-3).
          2. Jesus came as the Christ.
      2. Concerning the marriage of the groom (John 3:29)
        1. Precept: he that has the bride is the bridegroom.
        2. Contrast
          1. John is the friend of the groom.
            1. He stands beside the groom.
            2. He hears the voice of the groom.
            3. He rejoices because of the groom’s voice.
            4. His joy is fulfilled in the marriage of the groom.
        3. The identity of the bride
          1. The work of the friend; that is, the best man
            1. To ask the hand of the young woman in marriage
            2. To serve as an intermediary between the couple during the time of betrothal
            3. To officiate at the marriage feast
          2. The application in this passage
            1. Cannot refer to the body of New Testament believers. John does not bring the grace age believers to Christ.
            2. Must refer to the Jewish believers in Christ as Messiah (see Isaiah 54:5; Hosea 2:19)
            3. The marriage was postponed because of the refusal of the bride to accept her call to the marriage.
          3. Different scriptural uses of the bride as a type
            1. The body of Christ (Ephesians 5:25-32)
            2. The local church (2 Corinthians 11:1-3)
            3. Israel (Isaiah 54:5; Hosea 2:19; John 3:29)
            4. The land of Israel (Isaiah 62:1-5; this passage also refers to the people)
            5. The New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2, 9-10)
      3. Concerning the blessings of their work (John 3:30)
        1. Precept: He must increase but we must decrease.
        2. Contrast
          1. John is decreasing.
          2. Jesus is increasing.
      4. Concerning the source of their existence (John 3:31)
        1. Precept: He that cometh from above is above all.
        2. Contrast (1 Corinthians 15:47)
          1. John is from below.
            1. He is of the earth: earthy.
            2. He speaks of the earth; Note: The message of John pointed to an earthly kingdom for an earthly people.
          2. Jesus is above all.
            1. He comes from above.
            2. He comes from heaven.
    3. The Case for Jesus (John 3:32-36)
      1. He was confirmed by His words (John 3:32).
        1. He spoke of what He had seen and heard (John 8:26).
        2. Though men rejected His testimony
      2. He was confirmed by true believers (John 3:33)
        1. There were those who received His testimony.
        2. These true believers confirmed the truth of His words.
        3. To “set to his seal”
          1. A seal of wax was often used to close a letter or document.
          2. The seal was set by pressing the mark of the seal in the wax. This identified the maker of the seal as would a signature on a letter today.
          3. True believers in Christ confirm the truth of His words by their own faith. Their testimony makes an impression in the seal (2 Timothy 2:19).
          4. The Father has set His own seal on the Son (John 6:27).
      3. He was confirmed by the Spirit of God (John 3:34).
        1. He spoke the words of God (John 6:63; 1 Corinthians 2:13).
        2. He had the Spirit without measure (Isaiah 11:1-2; Colossians 2:9).
      4. He was confirmed by the Father (John 3:35).
        1. He was loved by the Father (John 17:24-26).
        2. He was given all things by the Father (John 5:19-27).
      5. He was confirmed by the division He made among men (John 3:36).
        1. Those who believe on the Son – have everlasting life.
        2. Those who do not believe the Son
          1. Shall not see life
          2. Have the wrath of God abiding on them
David Reagan

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 18:18

The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty.