May 25, 2022
Focus reading John
17:20-26 Some of you may remember Tim Shaw from
Demtel. If you don’t you may be familiar with the Shopping network.
A presenter tells you about an amazing product you must have. Then
she or he will say “but wait there’s more” and will offer another
amazing product, then they might say “Not only that you also
get...” and perhaps they add “and if you call right now we’ll also
add”. At the finish they might ask “And how much would you expect
to pay for this...” And then they will give the amazing bargain
Well I want to argue that the Gospel (The Christian story about how we can be forgiven, healed and reconciled to God, to each other and to the whole of creation) is the first Demtel add. It’s an amazing deal and there’s always more.
Much of John’s Gospel is written just like a Demtel or home shopping ad. Something about God is revealed. It is repeated, a little more is revealed, and then a little more again and so on until the full picture is revealed.
So viewers on behalf of the God Network I’d like to offer you the Amazing Gospel Deal.
Firstly you get “The Gospel” - This is an extremely close relationship with God where you get to share in the inner relationship of the Trinity - the relationship between the Father Jesus & the Holy Spirit. Any friend of Jesus is part of this relationship and that’s not all you also get millions of bonus Brothers and sisters as part of that relationship too.
Jesus prays in verse 21 of John 17 that all of us, all who trust in him “may be one”. “As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us” He repeats this idea in verse 24 where he says “24 Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am...” Jesus requests that we are drawn into the very presence - house - of God.
But that’s not all... Not only... do you get the Gospel an
amazing healing, life giving relationship with God the Father, Son
& and and millions of bonus brothers and sisters through time
and space. In this fantastic Gospel package you also get get to
share glory or honour of God.
As Jesus says in verse 22-23 “22 The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one,”
How do we share in that Glory. In John’s Gospel - it’s the Cross. The sign that God had truly come amongst us as a human being/ one of us. It’s also the Christmas Message. The way that we see and share in the glory of God is in God becoming one of us, sharing God’s life with us. God is born as we are born as a human being of a human mum and just as all of us suffer to some degree or other, and just as all of us die God also dies. We share in this with Jesus and Jesus share this with us. EVEN better, we alsp share in Jesus’ new life, his victory, being raised to new life and returning to God the Father.
But wait not only does this Gospel package give us an amazing healing and renewing relationship, millions of bonus sisters and brothers and the glory and honour of God, but right now it affects our lives because it pours God’s love into our very being. Jesus shares the Fathers love with us. As Jesus says in verse 26 26 I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.
2. But Wait there’s more: Not only do you Get this Gospel
package giving you an amazing healing and renewing relationship,
millions of bonus sisters and brothers and the glory and honour of
God, which has its effect right now, but as part of the overall
package you Get the amazing privilege of sharing in the Mission of
Jesus to the world.
Jesus asks the Father to share his relationship with you als with those “Who will believ in [him] through [your] word.” (Verse 20)
Each of you who have this relationship with Jesus also have a call to ministry, a call to serve God as Jesus did. Jesus’ is saying that others will believe through your word, your service witness and worship. If you share in this relationship with Jesus you share in his mission and God will use even your fumbling and imperfect efforts to bring others into that relationship. For me as someone who especially as a bullied teenager believed I was worthless this is amazingly freeing God can use even me. God can use Peter and disciples who often do not understand, who run away when Jesus is arrested and even deny they know him.
Jesus says that this is a core reason for God the Father sharing his relationship with Jesus and the Spirit with us “so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (IE Jesus) (Verse 21) If I take some of the repettition out of verses 22-23 it makes it clearer: “22 The glory that you have given me I have given them........so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”
Each of us has particular callings. We may be called to serve the church as a volunteer, or in full time ministry. We may be called to serve our family, to be the best mums and dads raising our children in love and faith. We may be called to serve the community through work or organisations or simply supporting our neighbours. We may be called to professions or crafts or artistic expression or trades, to serve others through the work of our minds and hands. Whatever our callings we share the common calling of sharing the glory, the honour, the love of God with others in all that we do and are so that the world may be one, joind together in this healing, renewing relationship of love.
So what do you get in this Amazing Gospel package? - you get to shar in the amazing healing and renewing relationship of the Trinity. Not only that you get millions of bonus sisters and brothers and the glory and honour of God, which has its effect right now. But wait there’s more, as part of the overall package you Get the amazing privilege of sharing in the Mission of Jesus to the world.
How much would you expect to pay? One million dollars? Your soul and the souls of your Children? One thousand Easy payments of $19.95? No! If you call righ now, it will cost you nothing! That’s right this once in Eternity offer is obsoletely free! It costs absolutely nothing... and absolutely everything, but that is another sermon.