Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Whom are you seeking?

Tuesday 8-16-2016   Home in Modesto
Scripture Reading:  2 Kings 24   Jer 22   Psalm 112    John 18
S=Scripture  O=Observation  A=Application  P=Prayer  SOAP for the soul.

S.  John 18:4-7 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, "Whom are you seeking?" They answered Him, "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said to them, "I am He." And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. Now when He said to them, "I am He," they drew back and fell to the ground. Then He asked them again, "Whom are you seeking?" NKJV

O.  It is dark night in the Garden of Gethsemane when Judas Iscariot comes leading a mob of armed soldiers and temple police.  Some are carrying torches or lanterns to identify the Man they are searching for. Jesus might slip away in the darkness and escape. He could easily have done so. Now here they come, but Jesus does not run. Instead He steps forward to the lead soldier. “Whom are you seeking?” Someone is now holding the lantern to make Jesus’ face visible. “Jesus of Nazareth.” “I am he.” But just like Spanish, the verb identifies the subject… the pronoun is only necessary in English. So Jesus’ answer is really only two words, “I AM!” And that just happens to be Jehovah God’s nickname. In Exodus 3 the voice from the burning bush identifies God as “I AM.” The name of God set these tough soldiers on their heels. They stumble over each other and find themselves picking themselves up off the ground. 

A.  As I opened the text to read John 18 this morning I just glanced at the page before really reading the text. But this question jumped off the page at me, “Whom are you seeking?” It took me back to the garden and I heard Jesus saying to me, “Whom are you seeking?” In other words, “Ralph, what are you up to this morning?” “Well, Lord, this is my devotional time, You know. So during these next few minutes I guess I’ll be seeking You. Then He says, “I AM He!” and I fall to the ground, for God Himself stands there before me.  My legs can no longer support my weight. I am in the presence of the “I AM” of the burning bush.  Stronger men that I have fallen before Him.

P.  And so Lord Jesus, here I lie crumpled in a heap before You. It was Your identifying name “I AM” that called Moses to set thousands free from slavery. Today Your voice calls me back to that burning bush experience in my life. You are sending me once more to set people free from slavery. Give me the courage to go into action. May my answer be similar to Yours, “Here I am, send me!” Amen.


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