Nothing You Can Do About It!!

Think about this.  The apostle John referred to himself as “the one whom Jesus loved” multiple times…in HIS OWN gospel!!   Not once, not twice, but at least 5 different times!!  “One of his disciples, whom Jesus loved, was reclining at table at Jesus’ side, so Simon Peter motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking.”John‬ ‭13:23-24‬ ‭ESV   (more examples below).  Now imagine being one of the other disciples.  Do you think this bothered them?  I can identify with those other disciples, and I know it would have grated on me!   Let me ask you this – who do you identify with?  John – or the other 11 disciples?  I’m thinking I relate to the wrong side of this equation.  

Think about John.   He is just there through the Gospels, always just hanging with Jesus.  We know that he is one of the special three that Jesus ALWAYS had with him.  “Peter turned and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them, the one who also had leaned back against him during the supper and had said, “Lord, who is it that is going to betray you?”  There, just hanging with Jesus, leaning against him, calm even when the water was getting hot.  Living in God’s Love!!  

Compare John with Peter – “He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.”  Peter was the one who was always trying to prove something.  Trying to walk on water.  Cutting off a soldiers ear when the time came for Jesus to be arrested.  Claiming  he would never deny Jesus only to deny him 3 times hours later.  Trying  to rebuke Jesus – “And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”“‭‭Mark‬ ‭8:32-33‬ ‭ESV‬‬.
Just using Peter to contrast with John here, but do you see the point?  The apostle John had accepted the love of Jesus Christ!!  John knew that Jesus -the Christ, the Messiah, the son of God, God in the flesh – loved HIM, and there was nothing anybody, anywhere, at anytime could do about it!!   “When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.”   Do you think it was an accident that John, who KNEW the love Jesus has for him, is the one Jesus called upon to take care of his earthly mother when his time had come??   One more thing to ponder – Jesus and all of his apostles, including Paul, died traumatic deaths as Christian martyrs.  All except for one that is.  “The apostle whom Jesus loved” lived to a ripe old age and died a natural death.  The apostle John was (I believe) into his eighties when he wrote the book of Revelation.  My understanding is that Christ’ enemies tried to cook John in boiling oil and still couldn’t kill him!!   There has GOT to be some kind of lesson in John declaring Jesus love for himself all these times.  We know that nothing is in our bible that does not have a purpose for us.  So whatever you do in life, whatever you are called or gifted to do, like the apostle John you have the love and power of Jesus Christ with you always.  And there is nothing you can do about it!!
 
One of his disciples, whom Jesus loved, was reclining at table at Jesus’ side, so Simon Peter motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking.”John‬ ‭13:23-24‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.”
‭‭John‬ ‭19:26-27‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.””
‭‭John‬ ‭20:2‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“That disciple whom Jesus loved therefore said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment, for he was stripped for work, and threw himself into the sea. The other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, but about a hundred yards off.”
‭‭John‬ ‭21:7-8‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Peter turned and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them, the one who also had leaned back against him during the supper and had said, “Lord, who is it that is going to betray you?” When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about this man?””
‭‭John‬ ‭21:20-21‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.” He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.”
‭‭John‬ ‭21:15-17‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:31‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:28‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. So they said to him, “You also are not one of his disciples, are you?” He denied it and said, “I am not.” One of the servants of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Did I not see you in the garden with him?” Peter again denied it, and at once a rooster crowed.”
‭‭John‬ ‭18:25-27‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:35-39‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭27:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭118:6‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.”
‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”
‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:16‬ ‭ESV‬‬

John Lewis

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