What Jesus Did! 'Believe Moses!' — John 5:45-47

Thursday, April 17, 2014

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"Don't think that I will stand before the Father and say that you are wrong. Moses is the person that says that you are wrong. And Moses is the one that you hoped would save you. If you really believed Moses, you would believe me. Why? Because Moses wrote about me. But you don't believe what Moses wrote. So you cannot believe the things I say."
— John 5:45-47
Illustration of John 5:45-47 —  If you really believed Moses, you would believe me.

Key Thought

Jesus is that great prophet like Moses that God had promised would come. Except he is greater than Moses and the covenant he brings is greater than Moses' covenant. At the same time, Jesus fulfills the Law of Moses. Jesus teaches the heart of God that lies underneath the Law of Moses. So we look to the Law as the way to bring us to a deeper appreciation of God's grace given us in Jesus (Galatians 3:26-29; Galations4:1-4). Our appreciation and admiration goes to Moses, but we set our hopes on Jesus, God's Son!

Today's Prayer

Father, thank you for the Old Testament, especially the Torah,* which reveals your holiness, power, mercy, deliverance, and care. Thank you that your old Covenant looked toward the coming of a New Covenant when your will and words would be written on people's hearts. May I live that holy character that your Law reveals, yet may I live out of appreciation for your overwhelming grace in Jesus, in whose name I pray. Amen.
*The Torah consists of the first five books of the Old Testament (Genesis — Deuteronomy). The Torah is sometimes also referred to as The Law or The Pentateuch.

Today's Verses in Context

"If I tell people about myself, then people cannot accept those things I say about myself. But there is another person that tells people about me. And I know that the things he says about me are true. "You have sent men to John. And he has told you about the truth. I don't need a man to tell people about me. But I tell you these things so that you can be saved. John was like a lamp that burned and gave light. And you were happy to enjoy his light for a while. "But I have a proof about myself that is greater than John. The things I do are my proof. These are the things my Father gave me to do. These things show that the Father sent me. And the Father that sent me has given proof about me himself. But you have never heard his voice. You have never seen what he looks like. The Father's teaching does not live in you. Why? Because you don't believe in the One the Father sent. You carefully study the Scriptures. You think that those Scriptures give you life forever. Those same Scriptures tell about me! But you refuse to come to me to have that life {you want}. "I don't want praise from you or any other human. But I know you—I know that you don't have God's love in you. I have come from my Father—I speak for him. But you don't accept me. But when another person comes speaking only for himself, you will accept him. You like to have praise from each other. But you never try to get the praise that comes from the only God. So how can you believe? Don't think that I will stand before the Father and say that you are wrong. Moses is the person that says that you are wrong. And Moses is the one that you hoped would save you. If you really believed Moses, you would believe me. Why? Because Moses wrote about me. But you don't believe what Moses wrote. So you cannot believe the things I say."

John 5:31-47

Related Scripture Readings

The Lord your God will send to you a prophet. This prophet will come from among your own people. He will be like me. You must listen to this prophet. God will send you this prophet because that is what you asked him to do. When you were gathered together at Mount Horeb (Sinai), {you were afraid of God's voice and the great fire you saw on the mountain. So} you said, 'Don't let us hear the voice of the Lord our God again! Don't let us see that great fire or we will die!' "The Lord said to me, 'The thing they ask for is good. I will send them a prophet like you. This prophet will be one of their own people. I will tell him the things he must say. And he will tell the people everything I command. This prophet will speak for me. And when he speaks, if any person refuses to listen to my commands, then I will punish that person.'

Deuteronomy 18:15-19

Jesus said to his followers, "Once there was a rich man. This rich man hired a manager to take care of his business. Later, the rich man learned that his manager was cheating him. So he called the manager in and said to him, 'I have heard bad things about you. Give me a report of what you have done with my money. You can't be my manager now!' Later, the manager thought to himself, 'What will I do? My master is taking my job away from me! I am not strong enough to dig ditches. I am too proud to beg. I know what I will do! I will do something so that when I lose my job, other people will welcome me into their homes.' So the manager called in each person that owed the master some money. He said to the first man, 'How much do you owe my master?' The man answered, 'I owe him 8,000 pounds of olive oil.' The manager said to him, 'Here is your bill. Hurry! Sit down and make the bill less. Write 4,000 pounds.' Then the manager said to another man, 'How much do you owe my master?' The man answered, 'I owe him 60,000 pounds of wheat.' Then the manager said to him, 'Here is your bill; you can make it less. Write 50,000 pounds.' Later, the master told the dishonest manager that he had done a smart thing. Yes, worldly people are smarter {in their business} with the people of their time than spiritual people are. "I tell you, use the things you have here in this world to make friends {with God}. Then, when those things are gone, you will be welcomed in that home that continues forever. If a person can be trusted with small things, then he can also be trusted with big things. If a person is dishonest in little things, then he will be dishonest in big things too. If you cannot be trusted with worldly riches, then you will not be trusted with the true (heavenly) riches. And if you cannot be trusted with the things that belong to someone else, then you will not be given things of your own. "No servant can serve two masters at the same time. The servant will hate one master and love theother. Or he will be loyal to one and not care about the other. You cannot serve God and Money at the same time." The Pharisees were listening to all these things. The Pharisees criticized Jesus because they all loved money. Jesus said to the Pharisees, "You make yourselves look good in front of people. But God knows what is really in your hearts. The things that people think are important are worth nothing to God. "Before John the Baptizer came, God wanted the people to live by the law {of Moses} and the writings of the prophets. But since the time of John, the Good News about the kingdom of God is being told. Many people are trying hard to get into the kingdom of God. Even the smallest part of a letter in the law cannot be changed. It would be easier for heaven and earth to pass away. "If a man divorces his wife and marries another woman, he is guilty of the sin of adultery. And the man that marries a divorced woman is also guilty of adultery." Jesus said, "There was a rich man that always dressed in the finest clothes. He was so rich that he was able to enjoy all the best things every day. There was also a very poor man named Lazarus. Lazarus' body was covered with sores. Lazarus was often put at the rich man's gate. Lazarus wanted only to eat the small pieces of food left from the rich man's table. And the dogs came and licked his sores! Later, Lazarus died. The angels took Lazarus and placed him in the arms of Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. He was sent to the place of death and had much pain. The rich man saw Abraham far away with Lazarus in his arms. He called, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me! Send Lazarus to me so that he can dip his finger in water and cool my tongue. I am suffering in this fire!' But Abraham said, 'My child, remember when you lived? You had all the good things in life. But all the bad things happened to Lazarus. Now he is comforted here, and you are suffering. Also, there is a big pit (hole) between you and us. No personcan cross over to help you. And no person can leave there and come here.' The rich man said, 'Then please, father {Abraham}, send Lazarus to my father's house on earth! I have five brothers. Lazarus could warn my brothers so that they will not come to this place of pain.' But Abraham said, 'They have the law of Moses and the writings of the prophets to read; let them learn from that!' But the rich man said, 'No, father Abraham! But if someone came to them from the dead, then they would change their hearts and lives.' But Abraham said to him, 'No! If your brothers won't listen to Moses and the prophets, then they won't listen to someone that comes back from death.'"

Luke 16: -31

When a man builds a house, people will honor the man more than the house. It is the same with Jesus. Jesus should have more honor than Moses. Every house is built by some person. But God built everything. Moses was faithful in all God's house (family) like a servant. He told people the things that God would say in the future. But Christ is faithful in ruling God's house like a Son. We {believers} are God's house (family). We are God's house if we continue to be sure and proud of the great hope we have. So it is like the Holy Spirit says: "If you hear God's voice today, don't be stubborn like in the past, when you were against God. That was the day you tested God in the desert.

Hebrews 3:3-8

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.