I still find it amazing that the words Jesus spoke here on earth, and recorded for us in our Bibles, can be so pertinent to today’s world. Listen to His words in John 12:23-26 “ Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honour the one who serves me.”
The hour for Jesus is now – this very hour. Now how relevant do you want the Bible to be? Evangelists have been telling people this for two thousand years and it is still as true today as when Jesus spoke it about Himself 2000 years ago. Now is the hour to bring and give all glory to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Now is the hour for the sinner to repent and turn from his ways in order to receive the salvation of Jesus Christ into his heart, and to receive the fellowship of the Holy Spirit into his life. Yes – the hour for Jesus is NOW.
We know that grains of wheat must be planted in order for them to die and grow again in order to produce a harvest. Jesus uses this analogy for us too when He says about a grain of wheat dying in order to grow and produce a harvest. It means that we must die to self – we must put our agenda, our hopes, our dreams and ambitions aside in favour of God’s agenda and plan for us. Dying to self is a prerequisite we must all accept if we are to serve God properly. Otherwise, all we do for Him may be tainted by our ambitions and our agenda rather than being purely based on His plans and agenda.
Our devotion must be to God alone. Just as were the apostles and early Christians – and indeed many Christians in parts of the world today – we should be prepared to lose our lives for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If it was worth Christ dying in His innocence for us in all our sin, then surely it must be worth us, who were blood bought and redeemed by His death, dying for the sake of His Kingdom.
Jesus also tells us to follow Him, to serve Him where He is. Where is He? Everywhere. So we must take His lead and follow wherever He leads us. That can be quite scar but always remember the old wise saying that the Will of God will not lead you where the Grace of God cannot protect you. (Based loosely on 1 Cor 10:13) Our only need is to know God’s will for us before we go charging off somewhere where He has not called us. My prayer on this is for God to open doors that no man can close and to close doors that no man can open. In other words, for God to make a way whatever the circumstances.
God will honour us. What a wonderful promise. If we do His will; if we die to self and serve only Him, in order to magnify Him, then God will honour us before men and whole company of heaven, and no plan or weapon formed against us will prosper. What a wonderful promise.
Like John, we need to preach repentance rather than ear tickling things. Watch your harvest grow – although you actually may never see it. Noah preached for 100 years and no-one listened but it was counted as righteousness by God because Noah was obedient. So let it be with us – let us fearlessly preach the Gospel of repentance and salvation through the shed Blood of Jesus. Let us make disciples of all men and bring them to baptism in both water and the Holy Spirit.
Oh the truth of Jesus words for today simply amazes me.