Message NotesFor Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 1
Sunday January 8th 2017
For Jews Request a Sign…..
1). Joh 6:1 ¶ After these things Jesus went over the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. 2 Then a great multitude followed Him, because they saw His signs which He performed on those who were diseased. 3 And Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat with His disciples. 4 Now the Passover, a feast of the Jews, was near. 5 Then Jesus lifted up His eyes, and seeing a great multitude coming toward Him, He said to Philip, "Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?" 6 But this He said to test him, for He Himself knew what He would do.
We had seen last time how these introductory verses to the 4th sign in John’s Gospel draw together the Jewish people, seen through the multitude who followed Jesus because they saw the signs He performed; the Millennial Kingdom seen through Christ going up on the mountain and the significance of the Passover as the first of the 7 feasts providing the prophetic calendar for the nation.
a). And that which is seen in this sign, according to the opening verse, comes ‘After these things….’, which things, contextually, would be the healing of the nobleman’s son and the healing of the man at the pool of Bethesda, both of which give two parallel facets of the healing of the nation of Israel following national repentance at the end of the Tribulation. And within the chronology of the events that will take place with respect to Israel following Christ’s return at the end of the Tribulation that seen in the 4th sign is in complete harmony.
b). National repentance must take place while Israel is still scattered among the nations, bringing to fulfillment the Passover, just as is seen in the type in Exodus where the Passover is kept prior to Israel leaving Egypt under Moses. It will then be following the fulfillment of Passover that the Jews can return to their land under Christ; a people and a land that will have received Divine healing in accordance with that which we have seen in - Isa 35:4 Say to those who are fearful-hearted, "Be strong, do not fear! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, With the recompense of God; He will come and save you."
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 2
5 ¶ Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, And the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. 6 Then the lame shall leap like a deer, And the tongue of the dumb sing. For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness, And streams in the desert. 7 The parched ground shall become a pool, And the thirsty land springs of water; In the habitation of jackals, where each lay, There shall be grass with reeds and rushes.
Power Point – Slides 1-3
And following their return to the healed land God will then supernaturally provide for them; the very same land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that was promised to flow with milk and honey; a supernatural provision as described in - Am 9:13 "Behold, the days are coming," says the LORD, "When the plowman shall overtake the reaper, And the treader of grapes him who sows seed; The mountains shall drip with sweet wine, And all the hills shall flow with it. 14 I will bring back the captives of My people Israel; They shall build the waste cities and inhabit them; They shall plant vineyards and drink wine from them; They shall also make gardens and eat fruit from them. 15 I will plant them in their land, And no longer shall they be pulled up From the land I have given them," Says the LORD your God.
And it is this supernatural provision that is the subject of the 4th sign, the feeding of the 5000.
2). Joh 6:5 Then Jesus lifted up His eyes, and seeing a great multitude coming toward Him, He said to Philip, "Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?" 6 But this He said to test him, for He Himself knew what He would do. 7 Philip answered Him, "Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may have a little." 8 One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, said to Him, 9 "There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?" 10 Then Jesus said, "Make the people sit down." Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 And Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks He distributed them to the disciples, and the disciples to those sitting down; and likewise of the fish, as much as they wanted. 12 So when they were filled, He said to His disciples, "Gather up the fragments that remain, so that nothing is lost." 13 Therefore they gathered them up, and filled twelve
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 3
baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten.
a). Now it is without doubt that supernatural physical provision for Israel will take place and we will not minimize the importance of this, but that which is seen in this sign goes beyond the physical into the spiritual.
b). To begin to piece this together let’s re-visit the end of v13 from Amos Chapter 9 - The mountains shall drip with sweet wine, And all the hills shall flow with it. – identification of ‘mountains’ and ‘hills’ within the typology cannot help but take us to the Gentile nations as they will exist upon the earth during the Millennial Kingdom just as we see them in - Isa 2:2 Now it shall come to pass in the latter days That the mountain of the LORD'S house Shall be established on the top of the mountains, And shall be exalted above the hills; And all nations shall flow to it.
There is no reason why we should think that the mountains and hills used metaphorically in Isaiah Chapter 2 would not be used in exactly the same way, referring to exactly the same thing, in Amos.
c). And we see in Amos that the ‘mountains’ and the ‘hills’ –the Gentile nations in that day will drip and flow with ‘sweet wine’, which has its origin in Israel. And where in recent weeks have we seen wine in relation to a restored and healed Israel in the 7th day? We have seen it in the sign of the wedding in Cana of Galilee, where the water, picturing the Word of God with which Israel is filled, as both the recipient and possessor of the oracles of God, is then turned to wine picturing the Word being brought to completion and having its total transforming effect upon the nation.
d). If we then read on in Isaiah Chapter 2 we find that which corresponds with that pictured in Amos Chapter 9 - Isa 2:3 Many people shall come and say, "Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, And we shall walk in His paths." For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
e). And if we now link this back to the 4th sign let’s remember that we read in - 13 Therefore they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten.
There are 12 filled baskets of leftovers from the barley loaves, which on the one hand points to abundance and on the other something far more profound.
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 4
12 as we know is the number of governmental perfection and with the Kingdom in view within the sign itself with Christ on the mountain this can only point to Israel at the head of the nations during the Millennial Kingdom and from Israel during this time will come an overflow of abundance to the Gentiles through that pictured in the leftover loaves as Israel fulfills her role of taking the good news of the one true and living God to the nations of the earth in fulfillment of that seen in the type of Jonah. In that day as Israel fulfills its role as God’s witness it will be as we read in Isaiah Chapter 2 - For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
In that day Israel will receive a supernatural abundant supply of the Word, the Living Word and the written Word which is alive, and this abundant supply will flow out through Israel to the nations so that the ‘mountains’ will drip and the ‘hills’ flow with the Word.
Power Point – Slides 3-6
f). That seen then through the supernatural provision in the 4th sign goes beyond the natural provision of food, to picture the abundant supply of the Word of God that will be Israel’s through possessing the written Word and having the living Word in their midst.
g). And this additional, central, profound, insight into the 4th sign is exactly what the Lord deals with in events recorded further on in John Chapter 6.
3). Joh 6:24 when the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, nor His disciples, they also got into boats and came to Capernaum, seeking Jesus. 25 And when they found Him on the other side of the sea, they said to Him, "Rabbi, when did You come here?" 26 Jesus answered them and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 "Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting [age lasting] life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him."
We see then that on this occasion the multitude sought after Jesus, not because they saw the signs, but because they ate the loaves and were filled. And in this we can see that the multitude was only focused on the literal in
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 5
much the same way as Nicodemus and the Samaritan woman, thereby not seeing the spiritual dimension presented through the sign.
a). And it is the spiritual dimension that Jesus points out to them, ‘Do not labor for the food which perishes but for the food which endures to age lasting life, which the Son of Man will give you….’
b). And in the Lord’s admonishment of the multitude here we find echoes of His words to Satan in the wilderness temptation - Mt 4:3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread." 4 But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"
c). And echoes of His teaching in what we call the sermon on the mount -
Mt 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
d). And in response to the Lord’s admonishment to seek the food that endures to age lasting life the multitude, despite that which they had previously seen and eaten ask for a sign - Joh 6:28 ¶ Then they said to Him, "What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?" 29 Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent." 30 Therefore they said to Him, "What sign will You perform then, that we may see it and believe You? What work will You do? 31 "Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'"
And in this request for a sign we can see the influence of the scribes and Pharisees upon the multitude that we had looked at last week.
e). And so, within the context of the miraculous multiplication of the 5 barley loaves the multitude ask Jesus for a sign and draw attention to the manna that was provided supernaturally in the desert in the days of Moses and Jesus’ response to this, staying completely within the parameter of the 4th sign itself, strikes at the heart of the matter - Joh 6:32 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 "For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." 34 Then they said to Him, "Lord, give us this bread always." 35 And Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 6
shall never thirst. 36 "But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe…………48 "I am the bread of life. 49 "Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 "This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. 51 "I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever [Lit. ‘have life for the age’]; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world." 52 The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?" 53 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. 54 "Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal [age lasting] life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 "For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. 56 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 "As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me.
In the inevitable parallel that is seen between the Jews of Moses day with the manna and the Jews of Christ’s day with the Bread of Life we find identical situations with identical outcomes.
f). The first generation of Jews to come out of Egypt ate the daily provision of manna, but they failed to understand what this supernatural provision of manna signified - 1Co 10:1 ¶ Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, 2 all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3 all ate the same spiritual food, 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. 5 But with most of them God was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.
Heb 4:2 For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.
A facet of the ‘good news’, the gospel, preached to that first generation was the daily provision of manna, but as we see this did not profit them because it was not mixed with faith; they did not believe or receive that to which the manna pointed – ‘every word that proceeds from the mouth of God’.
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 7
g). As a consequence of this those who ate the manna in the wilderness are dead with respect to their inheritance within the Theocracy and in like manner the generation of Jews who rejected the sign of the supernatural provision of multiplied barley loaves and the One who performed the sign, because of exactly the same thing, a lack of faith, they did not believe, are also dead with respect to their inheritance in the Millennial Kingdom.
h). It cannot be said any more powerfully or any more simply than that which Jesus says in John 6:53-57. Let’s look at these verses one more time –
53 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life [for the age to come] in you. 54 "Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal [age lasting] life, and I will raise him up [to a position of rulership] at the last day. 55 "For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. 56 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 "As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me.
And although these words are directed to the Jews in relation to their rejection of the sign there is a secondary application in them for us which is of primary significance in our context – unless we, Christians, eat His flesh and drink His blood we will have no life in the age to come. To literally eat the Lord’s flesh and literally drink His blood cannot be done, so how is this to be accomplished? All we need do is to go back to the beginning of John’s Gospel where the answer is to be found - Joh 1:14 And the Word became flesh………..
The living Word, the Lord Jesus Christ and the written word, the scriptures, are so inseparably connected that to continually ‘feed’ on the scriptures is to eat His flesh, and then, to drink His blood, is to avail ourselves of the Lord’s blood on the mercy seat for the cleansing of our sins as we go to Him as our High Priest, again a process inseparably connected to the scriptures –
Joh 13:8 Peter said to Him, "You shall never wash my feet!" Jesus answered him, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me."
Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 8
1Jo 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 ¶ If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
It is then as the Lord says our feeding on the Word and our cleansing by the blood are the elements necessary for us to have life in the age to come. Without either of these it is again as the Lord said we will have no life in us with respect to that coming age.
i). And our feeding on the Word is shown to be the major focus of our daily prayer – Lu 11:3 Give us day by day our daily bread.
j). Just as with Israel in the wilderness the Lord provides daily the Bread of Life for us and daily we are to eat it remembering the warning we find in Hebrews with respect to this - Heb 3:7 ¶ Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: "Today, if you will hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness,
These verses from Hebrews would have applied directly to the generation of Jews at the Lord’s first advent who could not hear His voice as they did not understand spiritual truth because of the hardness of their hearts –
Joh 6:59 These things He said in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum. 60 ¶ Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, "This is a hard saying; who can understand it?"……………66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.
And sadly this remains true within Christendom today, even at times amongst those who have begun on the race of the faith – there comes a time when some will not receive that which the Lord has provided for them as they grow weary of the manna again, or what they hear, from their perspective, is too hard and they cannot understand it – all of which really can be summed up in 3 words, hardness of heart.
k). The scripture teaches us - 1Pe 5:6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 9
Jas 1:21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
We are to receive the daily bread the Lord provides for us with thanksgiving
1Ti 4:3b…………..foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.
We are not to reject it or ignore it because it does not suit our mood or our expectations, but rather submit ourselves humbly to it – it does not need to be boiled or ground or baked to make it taste ‘better’, but eaten just as it has been given.
l). And we are to do this because - Pr 3:7 ¶ Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and depart from evil. 8 It will be health to your flesh, And strength to your bones.
And if we do this it will provide life for us in the age to come just as we see in –
2Co 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.
Col 3:10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,
Ga 4:19 ¶ My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you,
m). The attitude of our heart in this should always be that seen in the disciples - Joh 6:66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more. 67 Then Jesus said to the twelve, "Do you also want to go away?" 68 But Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal [age lasting] life. 69 "Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."
n). Once again to close today - Mt 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
We will continue with this next time – if the Lord is willing.
For Jews Request a Sign – Part 16 Page 10