Studies In The Book Of John
The Text of John 3:25-36
John 3:25-26 – “(25) Then there arose a question between some of John's disciples and the Jews about purifying. (26) And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him.”
A. As we will see by John’s answer, the question being asked is one designed to put John and Jesus as competitors against each other in regard to gaining disciples (cf. Numbers 11:26-29 and I Corinthians 3:3-5).
1. They ignored the fact that John was trying to bring ALL to Christ (John 1:6-9).
2. The Jews were concerned here and later about the popularity of Christ (John 11:47-48 and John 12:14-19).
B. Since we are to be purified (Titus 2:13-14, James 4:8, and I John 3:1-3), how do we go about doing that?
1. We are purified through obedience (I Peter 1:22-25).
2. We are made clean through the word of God (John 15:3).
3. Our washing/cleansing comes through obedience including, but not limited to, baptism (Acts 22:16; cf. Revelation 1:5).
John 3:27-31 – “(27) John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. (28) Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. (29) He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. (30) He must increase, but I must decrease. (31) He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.”
A. John establishes that his work is commissioned from Heaven (Luke 1:13-17).
1. Those who were directly called by God understood what they were to do (Amos 7:15).
2. Like Jeremiah, John’s work was to prepare the way for Jesus (Matthew 3:1-3).
B. John’s answer shows he is not competing against Christ, but working for the increase of disciples for Christ (I Corinthians 3:5-7).
1. John knew that Jesus is the bridegroom (Luke 5:33-35 and Ephesians 5:25).
2. The bride is the church (Revelation 21:9-10; cf. Hebrews 12:22-23).
3. John realized who the real builder was (Hebrews 3:1-6).
4. Though John knew his work was given from heaven, he showed humility in accepting his place as a servant (Matthew 23:12, John 13:16, and II Corinthians 4:5).
John 3:32-36 – “(32) And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. (33) He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. (34) For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. (35) The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. (36) He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”
A. Contrary to the statement that all men were coming to Jesus, John says no man is receiving the testimony of Christ (John 1:11, John 5:43, and John 10:25).
1. The testimony Christ brought was from what He has seen and heard of the Father (John 5:20, John 6:38, John 8:26-29, and John 17:8).
2. Those that did receive the testimony of Christ truly believed that His testimony was/is the truth (I John 5:9-10).
B. Jesus spoke the words of God (John 7:16 and John 12:49-50).
1. In contrast to John’s limitations, Jesus Christ did not have a “measure” of the Holy Spirit (Colossians 1:18-19; 2:9).
2. Jesus was/is God, not needing aid of the Spirit, in the manner John did, to do His works (John 1:1-5 and Hebrews 1:8-12).
3. Spiritual gifts of the Spirit were in part (I Corinthians 12:3-11), while all things were in the hands of Christ (Matthew 28:18 and Hebrews 1:1-2).
C. Everlasting life cannot occur without faith in Christ (John 8:23-24 and I John 5:11-13).
1. Those who believe will do all that is required to be saved (Mark 16:15-16 and Hebrews 11:7).
2. Those who believe not will have the wrath of God upon them (II Thessalonians 1:7-9 and Hebrews 10:26-31).
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