Now, the verse that I wanted to focus on there is verse number 4 where the Bible reads, “But he answered and said, ‘It is written, man should not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’”
What I want to preach about this morning is living by the word. Now, around Christmas time, we are celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ which was when the word was made flesh. Go to John Chapter 1 if you would, John Chapter 1, and I want to show you first of all this morning three similarities between Jesus the word, the word made flesh and the written word of God, which is the Bible, similarities between Jesus and the Bible.
I’ve heard it said and I even said it myself that the Bible is the written word, Jesus is the living word which there’s nothing wrong with that statement but obviously this is alive also so therefore it would be better to characterize it as the written word and the word made flesh and I want to show you three similarities between the two because the two are the same. There’s a father, the son and Holy Ghost, the father, the word and the Holy Ghost.
Now look at John chapter 1 here in verse number 1. It says, “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God.” Now, this proves the Trinity right here in this verse because we see that they are both separate and one at the same time because in order to be with God, there had to be a distinction between the two. But then it says, “The word was God.” The Bible says, “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word and the Holy Ghost and these three are one.” There are false doctrines out there.
One false doctrine says that the one are not three. I believe it’s called modalism is the fancy name they gave do it, the Jesus only movement, that basically does not recognize that there’s the father, the son and the Holy Ghost, and that these are three that are distinct one from the other. Then there’s another false doctrine out there that says that the three are not one, one that teaches that Jesus Christ is not God and so we believe that the three are one. We believe in the father, the son and the Holy Ghost, that they are all three, one God that exist as father, son and Holy Ghost.
Now in John 1:1, we see in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the Word was God jump down to verse 14, says, “And the word was made flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the father full of grace and truth.”
Jesus Christ did not begin to exist in Bethlehem’s manger. Jesus Christ is from eternity past. He is, he was, and he is to come. The Bible says, “But thou Bethlehem in the land of Judah are not the least among the Prince of Judah for out of these shall come a governor that shall rule my people of Israel,” which has nothing to do with the point I want to make. What’s that other verse about Bethlehem? It says, “Who’s going forth …” in Micah 5:2, it talks about Bethlehem being the birthplace of Christ and it says, “ … whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.”
Jesus Christ is from everlasting. He had no beginning, he had no and. He’s not a created being. He is the Alpha and the Omega. He is the beginning and the end. He is the first and the last. He was God made flesh. What happened at the birth of Christ was that the Word was made flesh. The word already existed in the beginning with God. But on exactly December 25 zero AD, just kidding all right, don’t kill me after this service, but Jesus Christ was the word made flesh at that time. We don’t know what day it was. There’s a 1 in 365 chance that it was December 25, right. We don’t know.
The first similarity I want to show you between Jesus, the word made flesh and the Bible, which is the written word is that they’re both divine, they’re both God. The Bible says the Word was God and of course we know that Jesus Christ was God. The Bible says in first Timothy 3:16 without controversy great is the mystery of godliness, God was manifest in the flesh justified in the Spirit.
Have we changed subjects? No, so it’s saying God was manifest in the flesh, God was justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached under the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. Number one, they’re both God, they’re both divine but number two, they’re both human and let me explain why, Jesus Christ although he was God was also human, go to Luke Chapter 22. He was 100% God, he was 100% man. He was God in the form of man. He took upon himself the form of men.
In Luke 22, I think we see one of the best examples of the humanity of Christ. Of course, there are plenty of times in the gospel where we see his humanity, where we see him weeping. We see him angry. We see him going through the things that we go through. It says in Hebrews 4:15, you're in Luke 22, “For we have not in high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” He went through the human experience and he was human.
Look at Luke 22:41, “And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast and kneeled down and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will but thine be done.’” Of course this doesn’t fit in with the Jesus only modalist doctrine because Jesus and the father had a different will. Jesus as a human being despised the shame of the cross it says in Hebrews 12. Obviously Jesus Christ dreaded the beating he was about to endure, the suffering, the mockering, the spitting. He did not enjoy those things but for the joy that was set before him, he endured the cross despising the shame sat down at the right hand of God.
Okay, so Jesus Christ humanly speaking is dreading the events that would follow. It says, “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me, nevertheless, not my will but thine be done and there appeared an angel from heaven,” I’m sorry, “… there appeared an angel unto him from heaven strengthening him.” You see in his humanity, he’s struggling with this, okay. The angel comes and strengthens him verse 44 and being in an agony, he prayed more earnestly and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.”
Now, there’s the key thing to understand about Jesus Christ, he was human but he was sinless. Just because we say he’s human you know people say to err is human. Well, not in this case because Jesus Christ was human. He went through the struggles that we as human beings go through but he was yet without sin. He was tempted in all points [inaudible 00:07:05] yet without sin. Here’s the interesting thing, that’s the same way the Bible is.
The Bible does have a human aspect to it, yet, the Bible is without error. Now when you read it and here’s what I mean by that, it was written by human authors. If we read the Bible, we can read books written by John and we can read books written by Paul and there a different style aren’t they. I mean, you can just look at it and say there’s a different style between Paul’s writing and between John’s writing.
Now people will misunderstand that and say oh man wrote the Bible. The Bible is not the word of God, the Bible is man’s interpretation. It has error. No because the Bible says that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation but holy men of God’s spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost but you have to understand that God in his wisdom, got in his foreknowledge, he created the men that would write the Bible in the way that he wanted it written.
You say, “Well that’s too complicated, I don’t understand that.” It’s the truth. The Bible is clear that the words of the Bible are the words of God himself, that they are divinely inspired and that holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost so God is the author of all 66 books of the Bible. He is the author. The Bible is God’s word, not man’s word, it’s God’s word. It’s the word of God, it’s from God.
At the same time, there’s a human aspect to the Bible because he used human beings to write it for example the apostle Paul when he’s writing to the churches, there are some personal exchange going on. He’s talking about how they treated him when he was there and things like that. So there is a human aspect to the Bible but don’t ever let that confuse you into thinking that somehow man wrote the Bible and that he put his own [inaudible 00:08:57], people will say Matthew put his own [inaudible 00:09:00] on the book of Matthew. Mark put his own [inaudible 00:08:59].
No, it’s just God using human beings to deliver his word unto us in human language. Okay, but it’s still perfect so just as Jesus is God, the word is God, it’s divine. Just as Jesus was human yet perfect without sin, the Bible is human yet it’s without error, yet it’s without flaw. Those things are similar. People today do not believe many times in the perfection of God’s word. I believe in the perfection of God’s word.
When I say that, I'm not playing word semantic games that’s why I like to say that I believe that the Bible is the word of God without error just to make it clear where I stand and I’ll take it a step further, I believe that the King James Bible is the word of God without error, that it is a perfect translation from the original languages and that it is as inspired as the originals, as perfect as the originals. It says the same thing, God doesn’t have to give us his word in any particular language because this is exactly an English rendition of what he said, it is the perfect, pure, preserved word of God, no bones about it, this book is without error, the one that I’m jamming my finger into right now.
Okay, this is God’s word. Let me tell you something, the people that are behind the modern versions, the ESV, the NIV, all this, they do not believe that. You can sit there and try to say oh these guys are conservative, they love the Lord. They believe the Bible, it’s all a lie and fraud. They don’t. Let me prove it to you in fact. I just want to give you one example that ties in with this. You’re in Luke I think. Go to Matthew chapter 1, let me just illustrate this for you because these are people who don’t understand that okay just because the Bible’s human doesn’t mean it’s with error. The Bible has no error because just as Jesus is all God and all man without sin, that’s the way the Bible is because the Bible is the word just like Jesus is the word.
I was just trying to find my handy ESV here. Brother Matt, you want to look this up with the ESV Matthew Chapter 1? Now Matthew chapter 1, we have the genealogy of Joseph, the husband of Mary of whom was born Jesus who is called the Christ and in this genealogy, there are a lot of famous people’s names because this takes us from Abraham all the way down to Joseph and in the process, it takes us through the Kings of Judah. All right? And if you look down at verse seven, it says, “And Solomon begat Rehoboam; and Rehoboam begat Abijah; and Abijah begat Asa, and Asa begat Jehoshaphat and on and on.
Now King Asa is a major character of the Old Testament and he’s one of the kings of Judah. The great thing he did was he got rid of all the sodomites out of the land. I wish God would just resurrect them and bring him back from the dead and he could do the same thing today in our nation but King Asa is a major Bible character. Do you have the ESV there, Brother Matt?
Read us verses 7 and 8 nice and loud.
“And Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asaph, and Asaph the father-“
Okay notice, Asaph, now Asaph is a completely different guy. Does anybody know Asaph is? Asaph was the guy who wrote Psalm 73. He wrote a bunch of other Psalms. He was one of the chief musicians. We could go down a little bit further and get to verse 10 where it says, “Hezekiah begat Manasseh; and Manasseh begat Amon; and Amon begat Josiah.” Read us that in the ESV.
“And Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos and Amos the father of Josiah.”
Okay, so they’ve got Amos. Now Amos is the guy who wrote the book of Amos, completely different guy. Now Asa and Amon are not obscure unknown Bible characters, these are the kings of Judah. They are mentioned many times. They are mentioned frequently, they are mentioned in the books of Prophets, they're mentioned in 2 Kings 1, 2 Chronicles 1, okay these are well-known guys and here the ESV is in error by substituting Asaph and Amos, two completely different characters, it’s wrong. It’s an error. It’s false. Those are not the right guys. It was King Asa and it was Amon.
Now you say why in the world would the ESV say that? [inaudible 00:13:40] these modern Bible translations, they’re not necessarily doing all the textual research themselves, they are translating from a Greek text called the UBS fourth edition or the Nestle-Aland 27th edition. These Greek text are compiled by scholars and textual critics just as the King James Bible translators, they translated from the Textus Receptus of Biza, of Stevens, of Erasmus.
The modern Bibles are translated from this corrupt modern Greek New Testament called the UBS fourth edition. Now one of the guys that was behind it, his name is Dr. Bruce Metzger, okay. By the way Metzger means butcher in German and that’s what he’s done to the word of God, he’s butchered the word of God but this guy Dr. Bruce Metzger, you can’t read any book about the King James, any book about textual criticism without this guy’s name coming up.
This guy is the big-name of all the books I’ve read, of all the research I’ve done, his name comes up more than any other and oh this guy is a genius, this guy is brilliant, this guy is an expert, oh the great Dr. Bruce Metzger. Okay, it's just so wonderful. One of the architects of the UBS fourth edition from which that ESV and modern Bibles come from, the architect of the RSV, and the new RSV, one of the editors, one of the people behind it, here’s what he says because he’s the one who made the decision. He’s one of the main people who made the decision to put Asaph and Amos is in there.
So you say what in the world are you thinking Dr. Butcher, what are you doing? Here’s what he says, the evangelist meaning Matthew because it’s the Gospel of Matthew, the evangelist may have derived material from the genealogy not from the Old Testament directly but from subsequent genealogical list in which the erroneous spelling occurred. Now hold on a second, he’s admitting that it’s erroneous. Are you getting this? He’s saying it's wrong but let’s print it anyway in the Bible because Matthew got it wrong so what is he saying?
The Bible is not God’s word. The Bible was not written by God. The Bible was not without error. The Bible is filled with mistakes because Matthew didn’t have a copy of the Old Testament. Let’s not bring up the fact that the book of Matthew quotes the Old Testament more than any other book of the New Testament. Out of all of the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John which one quotes the Old Testament the most? Matthew. I mean every page as it is written, it is written in Isaiah, it’s written in the Providence, it’s written in Psalm.
Look, Matthew quotes the Old Testament more than any other book and this guy is so stupid, he thinks that Matthew didn’t have a copy of the Old Testament. All he had was a chart. I mean listen to this guy, the evangelist may have derived material for the genealogy not from the Old Testament directly. He couldn’t find his Bible when he’s writing the Gospel of Matthew. He didn’t have the Old Testament. I don’t know where he got all these old testament quotes but he probably didn’t get it from the Old Testament [inaudible 00:16:52], but from a subsequent genealogical list in which the erroneous spelling occurred.
Look I don’t care what anybody says, he is a retarded and he’s burning in hell, he’s a fool. I mean to sit there and say Matthew didn’t have a copy of the Old Testament but he’s getting it from a chart that was spelled wrong, what in the world, what kind of a stupid theory is that I mean it’s bizarre folks, these are the architects of the modern versions, the geniuses, the brilliant [inaudible 00:17:24] I mean, I don’t even have the right to talk about these people because I’m so uneducated, I’m so ignorant.
It’s really just ridiculous that I would even pronounce the sacred name of Bruce Metzger. I should probably just write it down or something because I’m desecrating it by me, the ignorant, uneducated buffoon. I mean I can’t even begin to hold a candle to the kind of scholarship behind this statement here that says, “Oh, these are wrong, these names are wrong. He must’ve had just some chart that was wrong. He wasn’t using the Bible, he didn’t even read the Bible,” and if you believe that then go buy an ESV because that’s who is the architect behind these versions and doesn’t that just prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that they don’t believe it’s God’s word? They believe that Matthews is goofing up, making mistakes, see he left the Bible at home. He doesn’t know what he’s doing.
Look, it’s written by God. God used Matthew and God made sure that Matthew did not make any error and that God, and that Matthew wrote what God want him to write. He was moved by the Holy Ghost my friend and that doesn't just go for the Old Testament, goes for the New Testament also, 2 Peter 3:16 calls the epistles of Paul the Scriptures and Paul said if any man among you seem to be spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of God.
Okay, the New Testament is just as inspired as the Old Testament. All right, a little bit of rabbit trail there. Go to John 14, John 14 so we saw the similarities between the written word and the word made flesh, number one, they’re both God. The word is God whether it’s the written word or the word made flesh.
Number two the word is human, Jesus was human, the Bible is human, it was written by humans, it has their personality built in, but it is perfect and without error and authored by God. We must understand both of those things. Number three, they’re both the truth whether it’s Jesus or whether it’s the Bible, they are the truth, look at John 14:6, it says, “Jesus saith unto them, I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the father but by me.” Flip over just a few pages to John 17. We see that Jesus is the truth. Look at John 17:17, it says, “Sanctify them through thy truth, thy word is truth.”
Notice, God’s word meaning the Bible is truth and also the word made flesh Jesus said I am the truth. Go to Revelation 19, Revelation 19, I got to hurry here, Revelation 19. It says in verse 11 of Revelation 19, I saw heaven opened and behold the white horse and he then sat upon him was called faithful and true and in righteousness, he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire and on his head were many crowns and he had a name written that no man knew but he himself, and he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood and his name is called the word of God.”
So this is Jesus Christ coming on a white horse in Revelation 19. Notice a few things about his name, in verse 11, it says, “And I saw heaven opened and behold the white horse and he did that sat upon him was called …” what? Faithful and true. So the one who’s riding on this horse is called faithful and true.
A few verses later it said his name was called the word of God. Okay flip over to chapter 21, Chapter 21 verse 5 says this, “And he that sat upon the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new,’ and he said unto me, ‘Write for these words are true and faithful.”
Notice, Jesus, the word of God in flesh, the word of God embodied riding on a horse is called the word of God and is called faithful and true. Now it says these words are to true and faithful. Go to chapter 22 verse 6 and he said unto me, these sayings are faithful and true. Okay, so we see the sayings of the word of God, the words of the Bible itself are faithful and true and Jesus calls himself faithful and true and he calls himself the word of God see how foolish it is to try to separate Jesus from the word. That’s what people have done today that’s what modern, modernist and theologians and scholars, they tried to separate the written word from the word made flesh and they go to Greek mythology to tell you what word really means logos and it means this and that and the other, and they twist the truth.
When we read our Bible, it’s pretty clear, Jesus is the word and by the way wrong word, wrong Jesus. You know what I mean? So anyway let’s look at this further because Jesus said I’m the way, the truth and the life, the word of God is also the way the truth and light because several times the Bible is called the way, God’s way. For example, you don't have to turn there, but in 2 Samuel 22:31, you can turn to Psalm 119 and 2 Samuel 22:31, it says, “As for God, his way is perfect, the word of the Lord is tried. He is a buckler to all them that trust in him.”
Look at Psalm 119, this is the longest chapter in the Bible right in the middle of your Bible Psalms find that big long Psalm, it’s one with all the Hebrew letters Alef, Bet, Gimel, and it has all the Hebrew alphabet there and it’s Psalm 119, look at verse 104, it says through thy precepts, I get understanding, therefore I hate every false way. He loves God’s word but he hates every false way then in the next verse he says they word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Look at Psalm 119:128 because Psalm 119 is an interesting Psalm because it brings up God’s word in every verse, did you know that?
It’s 176 verses long and each of the verses calls God’s word by different names. There are seven different terms that are used for the word of God in Psalm 119 besides calling it just the word of God, it’ll use other terms like his statutes, his precepts, his way, his testimonies. He calls these different things and it’s interesting because all seven of them are brought up in the first seven verses so the first seven verses introduced us to the seven terms that are used throughout the chapter.
Out of all 176 verses because there are 22 sections for the 22 Hebrew letters of the alphabet and each section has eight verses. You see that? And it's 176 verses, they all bring up the fact that God’s word is great, it saves us, all the different things about God’s word is perfect. Look at 128, it says, “Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.”
So how do we know what is the right way? The word of God is the right way. Jesus is the right way so we also know of course that the word of God is life. Go to John 6, John 6 which will lead us into my next set of points here, John 6:63 because we saw Jesus is the truth, the word is the truth, the Bible is the truth. Jesus is the way, the Bible is the right way.
By the way, I hate every false way, I hate every false Bible. I hate the ESV. I hate the works of Dr. Bruce Metzger but it says in John 6:63, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”
God’s word is life so it’s the way, the truth and the life just like Jesus is the way of truth and life. Next point is this, what are the three ways that we live by the word of God? Because we’ve seen that the word is Jesus and the Bible is the word and they are inseparable. They have three great similarities, they're God, they're human and they're the truth, without error. What are the three ways that we live by the word of God. We start at the sermon with the verse that said, “Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeded out of the mouth of God.” Number one it’s the word of God that saves us.
The word saves whether we are talking about Jesus or whether we’re talking about the written word, we’re saved by the word. That’s what it means also when it talks about living by the word of God because of course when we are not saved, where dad and trespasses and sins and we are brought to life or quickened by the word.
Stay in John 6, just sit back and listen to these verses. Back in the book of Psalm 119 where we just [inaudible 00:26:15] verse 50, “This is my comfort and my affliction for they word had quickened me,” so he said, “God’s word has quickened me.” Quick means what? A life. Quickened me, made me a life. God’s word brings us to life. It says elsewhere, “The entrance of thy word giveth light.”
Listen to this Romans 10:17, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” You say we’re saved by faith but faith cometh by hearing, hearing by the word of God. First Peter 1:23 being born again not of corruptible seed but of incorruptible by the word of God which liveth and abideth forever.
We are saved by the word of God. The Bible says, “The sower soweth the word.” They hear the word. They either believe it or they don’t believe it. James 1:18, “Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.” Verse 21, “Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.” Look it's the word of God that saves your soul., it’s the word of God that produces faith. It’s the word of God that saves us and don’t tell me people get saved without the Bible. They don’t. They get saved through the word of God.
By the way, if you’re going to go out [inaudible 00:27:37] you better preach the word of God. So many people, they have all their cute stories and illustrations and the leave out the word. Now obviously we need to explain the word. Obviously we need to expound the word. Obviously we can use illustrations and parables to preach the word but sounds wrong when you’re leaving out the word. You know what you left out? The power. You know what you left out? The spirit. You know what you left out? Salvation.
I will say it, I’ve been hated for this and persecuted, I will stand on it, you cannot get saved without the word of God. Don’t care what anybody says, oh you just hear the gospel story, wrong. You better hear the word of God or you’re not saved. If you got saved, you heard the word, not somebody’s paraphrase or … Look it might be one verse but it’s one verse, it’s not zero verses, never. I don’t believe it because it’s the word that saves, it's the word quickens, it’s the word that produces faith.
Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God. That’s why I don’t believe people get saved from these fraudulent versions by the way. The only way somebody can get saved from a fraudulent version is if you happen to turn to one of the verses in the fraudulent version that hasn’t been changed where it says the exact same thing as the King James and good luck finding it. You look at the NIV and every verse in the Romans wrote is different, it has a substantial difference.
Now you might find verses in the new King James that are the same verse and if you use that one that's the same then of course someone could get saved if it’s the same if it’s God’s word, but you know what, you use any verse that’s different in the new King James or the NIV or whatever, I don’t believe people are saved from a false version, oh but I know this guy I don’t care who you know, I’m going by what the Bible says, do what you want with it, your opinion and your story is not to change my belief on that and that’s why the devil loves these new versions that change everything because it just causes a bunch of people to go to hell that’s why.
That’s why these churches are filled with unsafe people. You don’t think so? Let’s go soul winning. Let’s go knock doors. You want to go knock doors with me after the service? Let’s go knock doors and let’s go talk to people that go to the NIV preaching mega fun center down the road and let’s see if they're saved. You'll ask them do you know for sure if you go to heaven, if you die they’ll say I hope so, they’ll say yeah I know I’m going, I’m a good person or well I’m going but if I sin, I lose it.
That’s what you’re going to say, I mean and anybody who doesn’t know that just hasn’t knocked enough doors and just hadn’t asked people if they could lose and just hasn’t asked people why they think they’re going to have it because I’m telling you these new versions are part of the great falling away and apostasy of the end times because they have led to people not being saved because there’s no spirit, there’s no life, there’s no salvation okay, the Bible is real clear that God’s word is what saves us.
I like Acts 11:14, “Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.” So it's the word that saves. Look at John 6, the word of God saves us and remember, we’re talking about a certain phrase, man should not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God and the idea behind the sermon is living by the word of God. What does it mean to live by the word of God?
Number one, it means salvation. That’s number one. John 6 is a perfect illustration of this. Now, John 6 is a Scripture that is often misunderstood and therefore you’ve probably never even heard it preached in the Baptist Church. I know I grew up independent Baptist. I never heard a sermon out of this passage the whole time I was growing up. They would quote a few verses from the end of the chapter but I've never really heard this passage expounded in a Baptist Church because a lot of people shy away from it because it’s a difficult passage but really once you understand it, it’s not difficult at all.
John 6 is an important passage on salvation through the word of God. Okay, let’s go through it quickly here starting in verse 30, this is an important passage John 6:30 they said therefore unto him what sign show us thou then that we may see and believe thee what does thou word so they want Jesus to perform a miracle. They’re saying look show us a sign. We want to see and believe.
Of course we should walk by faith, not by sight. We should believe the word that we hear not always have to see something but it says here, “What’s the sign?” and then they give an example for the type of miracle they’re looking for. Our fathers did eat manna in the desert. As it is written, he gave them bread from heaven to eat. Now why did they bring that up? Jesus had fed 5000. They want a repeat of that miracle because they’re hungry and they like the free food .
Jesus even accused him earlier, he said, “You didn’t come because you saw the miracles.” He said, “You wanted to eat the loaves and be filled. You just like the food. By the way, if Jesus is making the food, it’s probably going to taste pretty good, when he’s making the fish and the bread. So anyway they like that meal, they heard about it, they wanted to get in on it and they are saying, “You know what? Show us a miracle.” I mean Moses give them bread from heaven to eat and Jesus corrects them in verse 32, he says, “Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” He’s saying I'm the bread of life basically, I’m the bread that came down from heaven, which again proves that Jesus came from heaven, that he existed before Bethlehem.
It says, “For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” then said they unto him, “Lord ever more give us this bread.” Jesus said unto them, “I am the bread of life. He that cometh to me shall never hunger and he that believeth on me shall never thirst but I said unto you that you also have seen me and believe not.”
Again this is a great Scripture on not losing your salvation. Once you come to him, you’ll never thirst again, you’ll never hunger again. Verse 37, “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”
Does that say everyone who lives a good life? Everyone who gets baptized? Everybody joins the church? No. It’s everyone that believes on him. It says in verse 41, “Then the Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph,” no it’s not unless you’re reading NIV, it’s not the son of Joseph, it's the son of God, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Of course later in the book he says, “If I could lift it up from the earth, I’ll draw all men unto me.” Okay so it’s not limited to a certain group. Verse 45, “It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. 49Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.”
So he’s referring to himself as the bread of God that came down from heaven. He said look if you eat manna, you’re still going to die. You’re still hungry the next day whereas if you eat of this bread, you eat it once, you’re never hungry again, he’s using a parable here. He’s not literally saying I’m a loaf of bread but he’s parable, in parables comparing himself onto bread, comparing himself unto the man that came down from heaven.
It says I’m the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever and the bread that I will give is my flesh which I will give for the life the world. Now so far nothing Jesus has said has been confusing or difficult has it, pretty basic, really simple, clear doctrine. It’s the next part that throws people for a loop, and confuses people and why people sometimes avoid this passage because they are confused by it. This is a passage that Roman Catholics will use to preach a strange doctrine but you have to understand the part that they struggle with is initiated by their misunderstanding of what Jesus said and then Jesus just expounds on their misunderstanding and corrects their misunderstanding.
That’s what you have to understand going is look what they say, I mean you and I have no question about what was just said. Do we? Really simple, really basic, we understand it, it makes sense but the Jews, they’re not saved and so they didn’t understand what he said because they’re blinded. They don’t have the spirit to discern the truth so here’s what they say the Jews therefore stroll among themselves saying how can this man give us this flesh to eat. Now is that what Jesus has really meant? That he’s going to give them his literal meat off his body to eat? No. But that’s what … this is like this reminds me of Nicodemus, well how can a man enter again into his mother’s womb and be born the second time? You’re going to climb into your mother’s womb?
This is the type of bizarre nonsense that the scholars and the religious leaders that are unsaved, they come up with the stuff just like Nicodemus just like Metzger … These scholars professing themselves to be wise, they became fools? They don’t have the spirit. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. They haven’t even started with knowledge, they have not yet begun to learn because they're not even saved. How could this man give us his flesh to eat?
Now whenever people … One thing I love about Jesus, whenever people confronted him with something to try to rebuke him, try to correct him, he’ll just turn it around and just take it to him and just go on the offense. One time Jesus is preaching against the Pharisees and then the lawyers, they say well you know thus saying thou reproaches us also, you’re criticizing us too. Then the next words out of Jesus mouth well unto you lawyers. He just changes his sermon. He’s preaching as the Pharisees and then the lawyers were like wait a minute, this applies to us too.
Okay, well unto you Lord … and then he just goes after the lawyers. Jesus didn’t back down. People are always trying to back him down, even his apostles come up to him and say [inaudible 00:39:06] the Jews were offended by this saying. He says, “So what?” He said, “Cut down that tree that’s bringing forth bad fruit,” paraphrasing what he said. He always turns it around and takes it to … He doesn’t let people stop him, it’s not what I meant. Okay and he just brings it to them and that’s what he does here. When he brings it to them, a lot of people stop following him. They don’t like the hard preaching, they don’t like this preaching and everybody forsakes him. He’s left with pretty much the 12. And you know what he says to them? Please guys don’t leave, you’re the only ones that are left please stay. No here’s what he says, “You want to go away too?”
Yup that’s what he said.
And they’re like, “No, no, no, we are staying,” but Jesus was not a compromiser and by the way compromisers are following Jesus, they’re following Mammon, they’re following their own sin and heart. Jesus is not a compromiser. Look at what Jesus said because they come up with this, how can this man give us his flesh to eat so now Jesus just takes it to them, he takes it a step further, he says, let me find my place here, “Then said Jesus unto them verse 53 and this is a part that confuses people. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.
Okay and people look at that and say what in the world is he talking about eating of his flesh and drinking his blood? But he explains it right after but that confuses people because the Roman Catholic false religion teaches a doctrine that when they take the Lord’s supper, when they take communion that somehow it magically turns into the body and blood of Christ literally you know that they're literally drinking his blood and eating transubstantiation is what it's called thank you and that is a false doctrine. It’s a weird doctrine because literally eating his body and blood would be weird. Who thinks that would be weird? Eating human flesh, drinking human blood but yeah, he’s speaking in parables and he explains that in the next verse. So don’t let this throw you off.
You say, well why did he say that then? Because they brought it up and he’s just saying yup you don’t like what I’m preaching, let me just park on that point because he knew that they were a fraud, they knew that they were unbelievers, he’s exposing them to be the unsaved blind leaders of the blind that they were and so look what he says next, he says in verse 57, this is where he brings it back to the manna illustration, okay because he sat in verse 56, “He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.” Verse 57,” As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father,” here’s the key,” so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.”
Now notice the live by me remember man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God and so the Bible is saying live by the word of God, here he is saying he that eateth me shall live by me talking about salvation because this has all been talking about eternal life, that’s why I read the whole passage, eternal life, eternal life, eternal life, believe, believe, believe but then look what he says next in verse 58, “This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever.”
Verse 59, “These things said he in the synagogue as he taught in Capernaum. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before?” and here’s where he explains the parable in verse 63, it is the spirit that quickeneth. What does quicken mean, makes alive, brings to life. “It is the spirit that quickeneth the flesh profiteth nothing, the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life but there are some of you that believe not,” so there he explains that look he’s not talking about his physical flesh.
When he talks about his flesh and blood, he is referring to the word of God because he is the word made flesh. Does that make sense? Because look he says to them you’ve got to eat the flesh of the Son of Man or you have no life in you. You must live by me, you must eat my flesh and drink my blood to have eternal life, to live by me and then he turns around and says no no you don’t get it, the flesh profiteth nothing, it’s the spirit that quickeneth or brings to life. The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life but some of you believe not. He said in the problem is not that you can’t figure out how to eat my flesh literally which makes no sense. He said the problem is you don’t believe that I came down from heaven.
He said look, “Does this this offend you? What if I were to ascend up back to heaven from where I came from? Then you would see and believe.” He’s saying it’s the flesh that profiteth nothing. Is it Jesus’ literal flesh that gives us eternal life? No, but wait a minute, it’s the word that quickeneth. The words that he speaks on to us because he is the word made flesh so he’s speaking in parables and dark sayings but he explains it in verse 63 and verse 63 is the key verse to show the Roman Catholic who will try to show you this and say that we need to all go back to mother church and where the pastor wears a dress and empties out a dust buster and puts pooh-pooh dust all over the place and does all this kind of that stuff and whatever.
He says there's some of you which believe not so that was number one, how do we live by the word of God? Jesus said, “He that eateth me shall live by me because I’m the bread of life. Your fathers ate manna in the wilderness.” The Bible says, go to Deuteronomy 8 for point 2, Deuteronomy chapter 8, fifth book of the Bible, Deuteronomy 8, number one we saw that we live by the word of God because that’s what saves us. It’s God’s word the saves us. It's Jesus that saves us and it’s the Bible it saves us. Because we hear the Bible, that’s how we get saved. We hear the word of God. We believe on the word and we believe on the word Jesus, both so how do live by God’s word?
Number one, we live by it because we’re saved by it, that’s salvation but number two the word of God is also our daily food. We live by it in the sense that we’re saved by it but we also live by it in the sense that it’s what gives us vitality in our Christian life. We get nourishment from it on a daily basis.
Look at Deuteronomy 8:3, it says, “And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.” In John six living by the word of God was about salvation.
In Deuteronomy 8 and in Matthew 4, living by the word of God is about a daily feasting on God’s word, just getting our nourishment and our life’s nourishment from the word of God every single day. You see, the Bible says that the miracle of the manna coming down from heaven in the book of Acts, he said that mirror numbers, that miracle was to teach them that man does not live by bread alone. He’s saying he suffered thee to hunger and fed thee with manna that thou might as know that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God that men live.
Now let’s think about some things about the manna. The manna was something that was miraculously provided by God so that they could eat of it. But it was only provided first thing in the morning and if you remember they would have to go out early in the morning and gather the manna. Once they were done gathering, all the manna would just melt away when the sun came out and it got warm, it would just kind of melt away. It was sort of like the dew, there’s dew in the morning and then it’s gone.
That’s how the manna was. They would go out and they would gather it. Now if they tried to gather for multiple days. They said well I’m going to stockpile manna so that I don’t have to get up and get it tomorrow to stockpile it. What would happen? The next day, it would have what in it? Worms, it would go bad, it would go rancid. It would have worms in. So they were told to just gather the amount that you’re going to eat that day and just eat it.
But on the sixth the day, they were told to gather double and they would gather double and then that way they didn’t have to go and gather on the Sabbath and then it would just miraculously not go rancid on the Sabbath. Every other day, it would go rancid if they kept and of course there were just people that just didn’t get this. I mean does that sound complicated? Some people, they just don’t … They’re trying to stockpile it. It’s worms. They just had to prove that that would happen and then there are people who go out on the Sabbath day looking for it and God’s saying look it’s not going to be there, I told you it’s not going to be there. That’s why you gather and Moses yelled at these people, you gather double on the sixth day so that you don’t have to go get it on the seventh day, but they just didn’t have any faith. I mean they're miraculously being fed from heaven.
Man did eat angels food and they still think they’re going to go find it on the Sabbath. This has to be some natural phenomenon but if it’s skipping a day in seven right, it’s got to be supernatural. They didn’t believe it but think about the parallels of the word of God. Okay, did Angels come and give them breakfast in bed? They had to gather it. Right? They had to bow down to get it. I mean they had to be humble. He said he humbled thee and fed thee with manna, they had to bow down to get it. They have to bend over and pick it up. Was it work?
Yeah they had to go pick it up. They had to do the work. They had to be humble. They had to bend over to get it. That’s how the word of God is. It takes work to read your Bible and this should let you know when the best time to read your Bible is too first thing in the morning because you know you get up in the morning, you eat your manna. You get up in the morning you read your Bible and notice, the manna that’s there for them that day, if they don’t collect it that day, it’s gone forever, I believe that there’s something that God has for us in the word of God every day. If we don’t collect it, it’s gone.
Say well I read the Bible a lot yesterday, I’m going to skip today. No he wants us to read it every day just as he wanted them to eat the manna everyday, he wants us everyday in our Bible. You know what? The Bible is a living breathing document God’s Spirit indwells the words of the book and when we read it, the Holy Spirit is teaching us and instructing us and if we miss a day of [inaudible 00:50:20] we’re missing truths that do not come back.
Well I’ll just read that part tomorrow, yeah but God is saying something different tomorrow than he is saying today. We need to read it every day before it disappears, before it melts away, the truths of nourishment that God has for each and every day are found in the word of God. We need to get it while it’s there. Get it while we can.
There are a lot of similarities right between manna and between reading the Bible, some that we do it everyday, we work for it, we were humble and so forth. A lot of the people, when they read it, I’m sorry, when thy ate the manna, at first they said it taste like honey, we love it. But then later they’re getting sick of it saying I’m getting tired of the same thing every day and now it taste like oil, it doesn’t taste like honey to me anymore.
The way the word of God is when we first start reading the Bible maybe we’re the most excited about it, we’re all excited. It’s our first time cover to cover but when you read this book, every day for many, many years, decades, sometimes you’re going to go through periods where you’re getting a little burned out on reading the Bible. I mean I’m just being honest, human being, you’re going to get to the points where you don’t necessarily feel like reading the Bible. You get a little burned out on it. It’s not as exciting as it was in the past, but you know you just keep reading it anyway out of character.
You read it, at that point, you read it for the nourishment because these people can sit there and complain about the taste right and say, “Oh I’m getting tired, I wish I had the leeks and the onions and the cucumbers. I guess that would be like all the false versions, the cucumber version or maybe that’s all your commentaries and devotionals, your onions and the leeks and garlic version but what we need to do is understand and when I look at the children of Israel, you have to understand look this is food that God is providing not to tickle your taste bud necessarily.
I mean thank God, it tasted good, it taste like honey but he was providing it to nourish and feed you, it’s not always there to tickle your taste but. You know what? Sometimes when you read the Bible, it tickles your taste bud. I mean sometimes the Bible is sweet and you love it and you enjoy it, it’s beautiful. Other times, reading the Bible can become a drudgery but you do it out of character because you know that you cannot live without it. You need the nourishment. I just don’t feel like reading the Bible. Reading the Bible is not as exciting as it used to be, get the nourishment, get the calories in you out of character and the sweetness will come back.
You’re to go through Christian life, it's just like everything it has ups and downs. Sometimes you read it because you love it and you read an extra and you can’t get enough of it. Other times, you read it out of character. You force yourself to read it because it’s the right thing to do. Thirdly, this is my final point, not only do we live by the word of God in the sense that it saves us, it gave us eternal life in the first place. We’re never hungry again in that sense but number two we live by the word of God as a daily food supply, not to give us salvation. We already have salvation eternally secure but to feed us so that we can have energy, strength.
What does food do for us? Gives us calories, energy, strength, it builds our muscles and our fibers of our body and our organs so it's our daily food. Number three we need to live by the word of God in the sense that we obey the word of God. If I said, this is the book to live by, if I said I live by this book, what am I saying? I obey it right I’m saying I obey it, I follow it, I keep these words and that is also a biblical concept, go to Romans chapter 10. Romans chapter 10 so we live by the word of God in the sense that we wouldn’t even be alive without it. We would even be saved.
Number two, we live by the word of God in the sense that the word of God is what nourishes and feeds us on a daily basis like the manna of old. Number three, we ought to live by the word of God in the sense that this is the book that we live by, we keep these words, we keep these commandments, this is how we live our life.
Now Romans chapter 10 touches on this, it says in verse five, for Moses describeth righteousness which is of the law that the men which doeth those things shall live by them. So here’s our phrase, that’s the title of our sermon right living by the word of God. Here, he says that Moses describes the righteous of the law that the men which doeth those things shall live by them.
Now in Leviticus 18, stay there in Romans 10, in Leviticus 18:5, the Bible says this, you’re looking at Romans 10:5, I’m reading Leviticus 18:5, “Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the Lord.” Deuteronomy 6:24, stay there in Romans 10:5, “And the Lord commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as it is at this day. And it shall be our righteousness,” notice this phrase, “… it shall be our righteousness if we observe to do all these commandments for the Lord our God as he have commanded us.”
He’s saying this will be our life, this will be our righteous. Now in Romans 10 back up to verse 1 and understand the point here, it says in verse 1, “Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.”
You see that verse? That’s the key verse right there verse 4. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth, Philippians 3:9, stay in Romans 10 but Philippians 3:9 Paul said and be found in him not having my own righteousness which is of the law but that which is through faith of Christ the righteous we which the God of faith. So what did the law say in Leviticus and Deuteronomy? It said the man that doeth these things shall live by them he said that when you do these commandments, it will be your righteousness. Did you not say that? When you do these commandments, that will be your righteousness. Okay but let me ask you this? Is it our righteousness that saves us?
Absolutely not, and he says look Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believe it. The law gives the righteousness they can’t save though because our righteousness is before God or as filthy rags. We need to be like Paul where we are found in him, not having our own righteousness but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. So what are we saying here? What we’re saying here is that we need to live by the word of God, not for salvation in the sense that doing the commandments is not going to save us.
Following God’s laws is not going to save us, living a righteous life is not going to save us. Okay we need to live by God’s word because we love them in order to please him to be strong in the Lord and the powers might. We’re living by God’s word. The Bible says if you love me, keep my commandments so when I say we need to live by God’s word I’m not saying to get into heaven, oh no. That was already taken care of with point 1. Jesus said, “You eat the bread of life that came down from heaven,” and he equated that would believing on him about 5,6 times, you believe on me, you have eternal life, you’ll never hunger again.
He said it’s like the manna in the sense that I came down from heaven but he says it’s unlike the manna in the sense that the manna and he brought this up, you ate that everyday. He said your fathers ate the manna again and again. He said you eat this bread, you’ll never hunger again.
Salvation over here on point 1, that’s a one-time thing. Living by the word of God, hearing God’s word, believing it, putting your faith in Christ, then there’s a living by God’s word of just getting nourishment, just getting strength, just learning and growing. Then there's a living by God’s word because we love him keeping his commandments, doing the right things.
Our righteousness he said look if you follow these commandments, it’s your righteousness and we ought to have righteousness in our lives, we ought to keep the commandments but is it our righteousness that’s going to get us into heaven? Not even close, not going to happen. Okay so we see that today as we are in this holiday season where people are thinking about Christmas, what are they really thinking about? The word of God being made flesh and dwelling among us, that’s what it’s all about.
We need to understand that the word dwelling among us and be made flesh, that is something that we have at our disposal in the written word as well and so at the time of Christmas where we're thinking about the birth of Christ and we’re thinking about the word being made flesh and dwelling among us and Jesus being born in Bethlehem and growing up and living a sinless life, being human, the way that we can celebrate that and really give honor and glory to Jesus Christ is first of all to get saved if you’re not saved. Otherwise, the whole thing is meaningless to you of Christmas.
A lot of people out there singing Christmas songs and celebrating Christmas and they do not know the Lord Jesus Christ their Savior. They’re missing the point. They don’t even know what there singing. They don’t even know what they’re celebrating.
The other way we celebrate it is by reading the Bible. I think a great tradition is to read the birth of Christ, read Luke chapter 2, read a story, meditate, read the whole life of Christ, read the whole gospel, that’s another way … Number one by being saved. Number two, reading God’s word and number three why don’t we obey God’s word to honor Christ. Those are the three ways we honor Christ. Number one, by being saved. Who’s done with that part? We're good on that okay. 99% of people here are hopefully saved. We’re done with that part, check. Okay? Are you reading the Bible every day or you’re too busy Christmas shopping, too busy with the dinners, too busy visiting family. Are you reading God’s word everyday? That’s the number two way to celebrate it and number three are you obeying God’s word or when you get around family, do you loosen your standards and you back down and say well okay I guess I’ll drink a little alcoholic beverage because it is Christmas after all.
Why would we drink alcohol on Christmas? We're trying to celebrate the spotless, sinless lamb of God? Why are we getting drunk? It doesn’t make any sense. Oh well I don’t normally watch these kind of Hollywood movies but it’s Christmas. Family’s in town. You know what? If anything, let’s celebrate the birth of Christ by keeping his commands. Reading the word, being saved.
Let’s bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father, we thank you so much that the Lord Jesus Christ was the word made flesh and dwelt among us. We thank you for the truth, the way, the life. We thank you for the written word and we thank you for the word made flesh. We live by them. In three different ways we live by them and please just help us to keep that in focus over the next week and in Jesus name-