Keeping in mind the objective of John, I want us to see from this text what it tells us about Jesus. Healing on the Sabbath • The setting Read 1-15  After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.  Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Aramaic called Bethesda, which has five roofed colonnades.  In these lay a multitude of invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed.  One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years.  When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?”  The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.”  Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.”  And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked. • Now that day was the Sabbath.  So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.”  But he answered them, “The man who healed me, that man said to me, ‘Take up your bed, and walk.’”  They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?”  Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place.  Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.”  The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. • I don’t know what stands out to you about this particular healing. Some people make a big deal of the fact that the guy seems ungrateful and a bit weak willed. When he is caught for carrying his bed on the Sabbath he blames the one who healed him and then when he does find out who healed him he scampers over to the Jews to tell them. He seems like he might be a piece of work and if that is the case we could have a whole sermon on the parable on display there, but this is not a parable. We could also see in this healing an example of our own inability to be healed of our sin and how Jesus by speaking a Word makes us whole! That would be very true, and edifying, and perhaps justifiable, but I think it is better to see the emphasis that is made by the text as a whole. • The main point of this passage is not the healing seen here, but the conversation that flowed from it as a result of the issue that the Jews took with this healing because it was on the Sabbath. • Read 15-16  The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him.  And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. • The misunderstanding of the Jews (10-17) (Mark 2 and 3) • But Jesus doesn’t defend himself how we expect. Equal With God • Rather than defending himself by appealing to their misunderstanding of the Sabbath as he does elsewhere, he instead points to the active work of his Father. • Read 17  But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” • Now this statement just made them more angry than the healing! • Read verse 18  This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. • They rightly deduced from what Jesus was saying and doing that Jesus is equal with God. Notice Jesus does nothing to deny this but instead he points to what that means, and how this explains his role of healing this man, what it represented. • Read 19-20a  So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise.  For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing • His unity and equality with the Father means that he always does what his Father does. Remember, the role of the Son is the Word. His role is to reveal the Father. The Father decrees, and works through the Son to accomplish what he has planned. It is through the Son that it becomes visible. This is the role of the Son in creation. • “I can’t help but do what the Father does. Our unity and love are such that our purposes are inseparable.” • What does this have to do with this healing? It was a reflection of God’s work. 1) God’s providential care of creation. But secondly there is something else going on. Think of Genesis 1 and 2 and the meaning of Sabbath. • “I and my father we are working right now. We are working to redeem, to restore, so that you can know what Sabbath really is! This is what I am showing to you when I do these things. I am revealing our redemptive purpose for creation.” • You see… The Father gave the Son in his role as Messiah the authority to do much more than heal cripples! • Read 20b-24  For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel.  For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will.  For the Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son,  that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him.  Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. • So much more than to heal but to give life to the dead and to bring an end to the tyranny of sin through salvation and through judgment (20b-24) To bring in true Sabbath. Jesus is essentially “You should love me or fear me. You should be glad or tremble, because I am the one who has authority to bring what your Sabbath was a mere symbol of!” The Authority to Give Life & To Condemn • Giving of life (25-26)  “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.  For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. The Son gives life to those dead in sin, under a sentence of eternal death, because he has received the authority to give life to all who he chooses. But how does he have life to give those under a sentence of death? Us! The reason he has the authority to give life to those who deserve death is because he earned the life we forfeited and died the death we deserved. By taking on humanity, living a life of perfect obedience that deserves life, dying our death, and rising with life indestructible – this is how he gives life to all that are in him by faith. It is because Christ died for sin, sin being condemned in his flesh, and rose again victorious that he can with all authority say that all believe in him will not come into judgment but have passed from death to life! What marvelous news! Reason for endless praise. And the life he gives is not just for the day to come, no it is experienced now, as he calls us from the tyranny of sin and from the cycle of destruction to by transformed by his grace. Christ has life “in himself”, this is the life that we share by faith and if we are “in Christ” “who is our life”, as Paul says, there will be evidence of life. A pulse. A flush to the skin. This is of necessity, because there is coming a day when he will judge all by their fruit – showing who has evidence of life in them and who still lies under the curse of spiritual death. • Dispensing of judgment (27-29)  And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man.  Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice  and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment. Christ has come once to provide redemption for the people of God through all time, but Christ will come again, given authority to judge. And his judgment is unique, because he is not only divine, but because he is also the Son of Man. What is the significance of this? This is a messianic title packed full of end time meaning. He is the final victor over history, he has all dominion but he is also human. He is a man and yet perfect in every way, making him the perfect judge of humanity. All will be measured by him on that final day. Every secret thought, every motivation will be laid bare before him. If that pricks your conscience and causes your pulse to quicken…. Application • Hear his voice and live (24,25) “now here”. Christ is the one with authority to give you life or death. Come to him for life. • The church: The prayer of Jesus for his people in John 17 is that they would be one, just as he and the Father are one. Why? So that world would know that Jesus was sent by God to be the Savior. And how does that happen? It happens as united to Christ we do what we see Christ doing. We see what God is doing through the Gospel of Christ (19-20) Calling people to life. And we do the same. Ephesians is a great example of how what we are and do as a church is to be a reflection of what God is doing in history and the very reason we have for that in Ephesians is what? Our union with Christ! Oh, beloved this is so clear. With authority, with the authority of Jesus we warn the world of judgment and hold out the good news that he gives life to the dead, even now! So believe in him! With authority we call each other to flee from sin, to go onward to become more like Jesus, just as Jesus did back in verse 14! The end goal of God’s work is that he has a people, formed into the image of Christ, living for his glory. In love he has revealed this to us, dear church, by the Spirit through the Son, and if we are one with him we must declare – we do what we see the Father doing. Conclusion As the church of Jesus Christ, united to him by faith, our mission aligns with the great redemptive work of the triune God. This, beloved, is a great privilege and a great responsibility. It is costly but we believe it is worth it. To the members of Immanuel, hear this. Do you want to know what it means to be a member of Jesus Christ? Look to the Word where God lovingly reveals to us, in Christ, what he is doing and know that defines the work of your life – in every area. Meditate on that this week. Consider what that means for you. Let’s Pray.