The earliest Christians followed a Jewish tradition of pausing to pray, preferably together, first thing in the morning, about mid morning, at noon, about mid afternoon, and in the evening. “Just a Note” posts are brief observations made from Scripture readings not related to a lectionary. If I have one to post, it normally appears about 9:00 in the morning, at “the hour of prayer.”
In John 6:36-40 Jesus is quite clear. It is not seeing him, recognizing him, knowing all sorts of things about him that will help. The people gathered around him may know what he looks like, how he moves, how he talks, all kinds of things about him. They may also know what his message is without fail. Yet this will not save them in any way.
What will rescue people for eternity? What will bring them to the resurrection Jesus speaks of? They need to believe him. Knowing all about him is not enough. It is necessary to believe Jesus. And what is it that Jesus says here the people need to believe? It is very simple. They are to believe that the Father sent him and gave to him all to be saved. Jesus mission is that he should not lose any of those the Father has given him. It is the will of the Father, then, that Jesus should act as the savior.
Does this passage teach a particular sort of election, as Calvinists will say? It does not. Everything given to Jesus is his. The use of “everything” is quite deliberate. It is neuter. All creation has been given to Jesus. It is his. Yet Jesus says that the person believing him, the one looking upon the Son in belief, that is the one who will be raised up in the last day. Jesus is the savior of the whole world. He particularly promises to raise up everyone coming to him in faith. The invitation goes out to each and every person. Believe in Jesus’ work. It is for you.
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