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7 Signs: The Signs are for the Unbeliever

7 Signs: How Jesus Showed Us Who He Was  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Signs are for the unbeliever

Jesus meets us in our unbelief
Jesus gives space for faith to grow

Mission and Vision

Signs are for the unbeliever

This is week 2 of Lent
How many of you are participating sacrificially in Lent?
Remember Lent is a season in the Christian faith where we identify with the sacrifice and self-denial of Christ so that we can experience the joy that is present on Easter morning to the fullest
We are continuing our sermon series on the 7 signs of Jesus in the book of John
Remember that a sign is not the thing to be worshipped… the sign points to something better
Say signs.. points … to… something better
As we walk through lent we are looking at the signs of Christ and what they truly point to.
In these signs/miracles we see Jesus sharing with us something about who he is and in turn who we are called to be
And ultimately we see in
30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
The whole point of the book of John is for us to find a saving faith in Jesus Christ.
Let’s get into our scripture for today

READ John 4:46-54

PRAY

Context
The sections before this Jesus has just come from Samaria where he met the woman at the well
You guys remember that story right
Worldly woman, meets Jesus, first person to know he was the messiah and the first to proclaim that news to people
At the end of this section In vs 44 Jesus says that a prophet has no honor in his hometown
Jesus is saying this as they are heading back to Judea. As they are going back to his hometown area… He was from Nazareth, but this whole area is Jesus’ home town
Our text picks up when an official finds out that Jesus is back around and comes for a healing for his son
Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe
My first point is this… Miracles and signs are for non believers
Jesus rebukes the people in that area. The You in this text is actually in the plural
So better translation would be unless yall see a sign yall won’t believe
He is speaking to cultural and religious Jews.
these are people who are supposed to have a relationship with God
These are God’s people who have the temple and the torah and the traditions and the stories of what God has done in thier lives… yet these are the ones who are needing a sign
The jews were the only people on the face of the earth who could say that the living God called them out of slavery and fed them and led them by miracle after miracle then gave them grace upon grace in the prophets and the scriptures.
They had claim on the presence of God who promised to dwell with them. They understood the power and the presence of the completely personal yet all powerful God of all creation
they may not have understood it completely but they understood some of it
Yet these are the ones that we see over and over in the new testament that are seeing Jesus and hearing his teaching and yet they are still demanding signs from him
Jesus had just come from the land of the semaritans
these were people that had a hodge-podge religion that mixed worship of Yhwh with idol worship and the different religions of the people that intermarried and mixed with the people there
In this context… of lost heathen people… we see almost an entire town come to faith in Jesus as messiah because of his ministry to the woman at the well and her testimony to them
We don’t see them demanding signs and asking Jesus to prove himself then he comes back to the people of God and they are there in mass… but they are asking for healings and for Jesus to show that he is God
This is such an image of the church… of the Christian
We are the people of God. We have seen the greatest miracle and accepted the largest miracle to ever be… the salvation that is offered through Christ
yet most of us are waiting to fully trust him until he can do something for us
Jesus can you just make these bills go away, can you heal this illness, can you help me get this job… then I’ll follow you
When, Christian, you’ve already recieved the greatest miracle in salvation
You can’t get more than Jesus
Healing, finances, relationships, answers… none of those things are greater than Jesus himself.
You are the miracle because you are the manifestation of Jesus Christ. The living God is dwelling in you!
Jesus saved you ! That’s the miracle that everyone in the old testament was looking forward to
You’re life and salvation is miraculous. And you’re the miracle for the non-believer
When Jesus does perform miracles it is for the non-believer. It’s to show his power as we are about to see in a bit.
For the believer… we are supposed to yes, pray for the miracle, yes expect the miracle… but the believer should never use miracles and signs as the reason to trust the God who ransomed your soul from death and set you free from sin
We see that even though Jesus has these words of rebuke for the people, the scene doesn’t end there
Jesus meets the man in his imperfect faith
The official had the idea that Jesus needed to be in the presence of the child in order to heal him
The man had some faith, in order to believe that Jesus was a healer, but he didn’t understand Jesus as messiah and as God incarnate. If he would’ve understood Jesus to be God he would’ve understood that the Word of God is enough to heal. And that God is all powerful.
But Jesus doesn’t berate the man. He simply says go, your son will live
Jesus doesn’t go with him, doesn’t do anything crazy like make lightning happen or give the guy some riddle… he just tells him to go
Jesus meets the man in his imperfect faith and grants him an opportunity to step out in faith and to trust the word of God.
Jesus, by telling him to go, was giving the man a chance to exercise trust in the word of God
What area is Jesus tellling you, its gonna be okay. Go!
Because if he’s telling you that, he’s already given you his word. It’s now up to you to prove that you trust him and move in the direction he told you to go
The text says that the man believed and went away… we’ll see that though he believed…he didn’t REALLY believe
He stepped out in faith and made the decision to trust Jesus in that situation. It wasn’t until the servant verified the truth of Jesus that the man not only believed in the power of Jesus… but in who Jesus was as omnipotent and omnissiant God
the text tells us that once he realized it was the word of Christ that healed his son, he and his whole household believed.
The miracle that Christ perfomed… the sign pointed an entire house of non-believers to salvation in Jesus Christ
So what can we take away from this sign… what is this pointing to?
One thing is that YOu are the Miracle
You are the miracle because you are the manifestation of Jesus Christ. The living God is dwelling in you!
Jesus saved you ! That’s the miracle that everyone in the old testament was looking forward to
You’re life and salvation is miraculous. And you’re the miracle for the non-believer
Christ purchased you so that you can be the presence of grace in the lives of non-believers. So that you can testify by your life that you are his and that others may look at you and see a sign that points to Jesus.
You are the sign for the unbeliever
Here’s a question… how well are you doing at being a sign pointing to Christ?
Like the official saw the sign and immediately remembered the truth that Jesus spoke. Do people see you and see the work and word of Christ?
I’ve got a couple take-aways and then we are going to participate in Holy Communion.
1. If you have accepted jesus as your savior and yet you have not accepted his Lordship in your life… It is now time to stop waiting for him to prove that he is trustworthy and take the step of faith required to grow.
It’s time to understand that you aren’t to be looking for signs because you are the sign for others.
It is only the grace of God that allows us to look doubt in the face and say I will choose to believe the truth of Gospel over what I see, over what I feel, over mysituation, over anything else in the world. I will choose to take the step of faith that Christ told me to take
Now if you don’t know what that step is or maybe you don’t know how this relationship with Jesus thing even works… maybe this is the time when you need to own up to the fact that you have been following your understanding of being a good person/christian and not following Jesus
ASk, seek, knock. Today before you leave… take the time to ask Jesus to give you the faith needed to trust him more today.
Make a decision to use the faith he’s given you to pursue him… not stuff, not signs… but Him and Him alone
2. If you have an imperfect faith, Jesus isn’t mad at you. He will meet you right where you are if you are truly seeking him. Even if you are seeking him with an imperfect faith. Jesus loves to take broken and imperfect things and create masterpieces with them
He loves you where you are, but he loves you too much to leave you where you are and he will grow you if you trust him
Before we take communion I want you to take some time and examine your heart
Have you been seeking signs from Jesus as a sort of payment or proof before you will listen to him … all the while banking on his grace to save you from the fires of Hell
If so, you are counting on the greatest miracle and still demanding more
Now is a time to repent of that
If you trust him enough to save you from eternal destruction don’t you think he’s trustworthy enough in everything else. Don’t you think that the same God that raised Christ from the dead can guide you into all righteousness and into perfect peace in himself? Because that’s what this is

Communion

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