Together in Christ: 'The Commanding, Life-giving, Voice of Jesus' — John 5:25-26

Tuesday, December 17, 2024

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[Jesus insisted that he had authority and power by saying,] "And I assure you that the time is coming, indeed it's here now, when the dead will hear my voice — the voice of the Son of God. And those who listen will live. The Father has life in himself, and he has granted that same life-giving power to his Son."
— John 5:25-26 NLT

Key Thought

A friend once told me that the first voice I will hear after my body dies will be the voice of Jesus saying, "Welcome, Phil, I've been waiting for you!" I believe the Scriptures teach us that we go to be with Jesus when we die. [1] The apostle Paul said that was better by far than remaining in this life. [2] While I am not certain of the state existence I will have, I know I will be with Jesus, and that's enough for me. However, when Jesus returns, we will be raised and changed to have immortal bodies, [3] perfected and glorious, and go to be with the Lord and with each other forever. [4]

Jesus promised that we would hear His voice and live — Jesus will use His life-giving power and raise us to glorious eternal life, forever. [5]

Through these previous eleven-and-a-half months, I have tried to remind us that God — or as this verse shows us, Jesus as God with us, Immanuel [6] — is our most important and life-ordering relationship. When He is the love of our lives, [7] then we are given eternal relationships with others through Him. We go into all the world to share God's Good News in Jesus because we love others [8] and want them to share in the glorious life Jesus has promised us. And we do it because Jesus has the authority to command us to do it. [9] By that same authority, "all authority in heaven and on earth," Jesus will speak, we will rise, and share in His glory with each other, forever!

[1] Philippians 1:21-24.
[2] Philippians 1:23.
[3] 1 Corinthians 15:51-52..
[4] 1 Thessalonians 4:17.
[5] 1 Corinthians 15:42-53.
[6] Matthew 1:23 uses the term and John 1:1-18 poetically describes its meaning.
[7] Matthew 22:36-40.
[8] Matthew 28:18-20; John 3:16-17.
[9] Matthew 28:18.

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, I confess to you that I am envious of those who heard Jesus when He taught in His earthly ministry. I long for the day when Jesus returns, gives His "commanding shout," * and speaks His words of "life-giving power" as He raises all of us who "eagerly look forward to his appearing." ^ to new life with eternal and incorruptible bodies to share in Your glory. Speed that day, O God, and I ask the Holy Spirit to work in me what Your "good and pleasing and perfect" will is. @ In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

* 1 Thessalonians 4:16.
^ 2 Timothy 4:8.
@ Romans 12:2.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 Corinthians 15:51-58
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

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Illustration

Illustration of John 5:25-26 NLT — [Jesus insisted that he had authority and power by saying,] "And I assure you that the time is coming, indeed it's here now, when the dead will hear my voice — the voice of the Son of God. And those who listen will live. The Father has life in himself, and he has granted that same life-giving power to his Son."

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.