Anointed to the Task

John 12:48-50 WEB

He who rejects me, and doesn’t receive my sayings, has one who judges him. The word that I spoke, the same will judge him in the last day. [49] For I spoke not from myself, but the Father who sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. [50] I know that his commandment is eternal life. The things therefore which I speak, even as the Father has said to me, so I speak.”


Jesus is the exact expression of the Father. He is divine. He is also human. As a human, he did things from the weakened condition of having laid down his divinity. He laid down his life and took up a life as a human. It is not a small thing when the Lord tells us to lay down our lives. Jesus is calling us into the same behaviors that he demonstrated as he walked the earth.

If Jesus did it, so can we. If Jesus could hear and follow the Father’s commands, so can we. He was human as well as divine. Jesus was so assured that he was hearing from the Father that he claimed to speak the Father’s words. Jesus was anointed. He was righteous and holy. His behavior modeled the scriptures, and his attitudes modeled the scripture. These two things made him both righteous and holy.

Righteousness and holiness opened Jesus up for an enormous anointing. His anointing was so strong that it carried him to the cross. His anointing carried him to and through his divine purpose. This is something we can imitate. We can walk in outward righteousness of choice and behavior. We can also walk in the inner attitude of Godly motive; we can be holy. We can hear from the Father, and we can understand what he says.


Lord, thank you for becoming a human and showing me how to live. Help me, Lord, to equip an anointing through the righteousness of behavior and the holiness of motive. I want to fulfill my divine purpose as you fulfilled yours. Help me to serve you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, amen.

The Spectacle of Miracles

John 12:9-11 WEB

A large crowd therefore of the Jews learned that he was there, and they came, not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead. [10] But the chief priests conspired to put Lazarus to death also, [11] because on account of him many of the Jews went away and believed in Jesus.


People love a spectacle. When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, he created a spectacle. People were astonished. In modern language, we would say Jesus “blew their minds.” And once Jesus astonished people with the wonder of the miracles he performed, people started following to watch the spectacle. Many did not want to become more intimately acquainted with God. They wanted to be entertained.

Of course, not all people were there for entertainment. Lazarus being raised from the dead excited many of the followers. A large number began to believe Jesus was the Messiah. Because of this, the chief priests plotted to kill Lazarus. They were jealous of the attention Jesus and Lazarus were getting. It was a threat to their positions (John 11:48). Therefore, out of jealousy, they wanted to kill both Jesus and Lazarus.

For Jesus and Lazarus, being anointed carried a heavy price. Not everyone was there to serve the Lord. Some were there to see what Jesus would do next. They loved what Jesus could do for them, but they did not love Jesus. We know when Jesus died, he died alone. Only a few apostles came to the crucifixion. The crowd that loved the miracles was nowhere to be found when Jesus needed them the most. Jesus understood these things. The Word says that Jesus trusted no one (John 2:23-24). So, for the many who would believe, Jesus endured the many that wanted to be entertained.


Lord, please prepare my heart to be faithful to you. I don’t want to be a person who is in Christ for entertainment. Please give me the grace to do what you ask me to do in a godly manner. Help me love you and love the people you died to save. Help me recognize the self-seekers so I can focus on those who may be saved. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Judging Fruitfulness

John 10:37-42 WEB

If I don’t do the works of my Father, don’t believe me. [38] But if I do them, though you don’t believe me, believe the works; that you may know and believe that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.” [39] They sought again to seize him, and he went out of their hand. [40] He went away again beyond the Jordan into the place where John was baptizing at first, and there he stayed. [41] Many came to him. They said, “John indeed did no sign, but everything that John said about this man is true.” [42] Many believed in him there.


Jealousy is surely the ugliest emotion. Not the loving jealousy which produces a willingness to care for and protect another. No, I am referring to the ugly, vicious jealousy towards someone who is more successful than another. In the church, we talk about people’s anointing as an object of jealousy. This is exactly what is being described in the above passage. The Pharisees refused to believe in Jesus even though he performed signs or miracles.

John did no miracles. John did not go to the temple to preach as Jesus did. John was less anointed than Jesus and therefore less of a threat to the leaders of the Jewish people. John prophesied and his prophetic voice was acknowledged by the people, so much the Pharisees did not speak against him. Yet they did not believe his message. More important, they did not feel threatened by John.

How many anointed preachers get passed over for someone less threatening in the modern church? Many Christians love worldly success. Even ministers of the Gospel get caught in this trap. Once their ministry starts to grow, they begin protecting the ministry. Which is good until it causes a minister to thwart God’s plan. Jesus wants willing vessels. It’s easy to believe God is all-powerful and can put anyone anywhere he wants them. And, while this is true, most often God works through willing people. As Jesus said in the above passage, look at their works. Check the fruit of a ministry before you whole-heartedly start trusting what they are preaching. That was Jesus’ advice.


Lord, give me insight and wisdom to understand the motivation and intent of those who lead me in the church. Help me both honor and righteously judge those who ascend to leadership positions. Save me from a cult-like following that can lead to deception. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Miraculous Signs

John 10:22-25 WEB

It was the Feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem. [23] It was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in Solomon’s porch. [24] The Jews therefore came around him and said to him, “How long will you hold us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” [25] Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you don’t believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name, these testify about me.


No matter how many people Jesus healed, many Jewish people refused to believe. They demanded signs and refused to believe the testimony of others (1 Cor 1:22). They wanted to see a spectacle, a miracle, and they were not going to believe until they did (John 6:30). Jesus was the chosen of God (John 5:36). However, Jesus did not do miracles at his discretion. Jesus did and said what he saw and heard (John 3:32).

When the Jews demanded an answer from the Lord, he spoke what he heard. He told them to look at the previous signs and make a judgment. How many signs did the Jewish people need? Always one more. It is the same in the lives of many modern-day believers. No matter how many times the Lord intervenes in some believers’ lives, they refuse to trust him. They are constantly seeking signs. This behavior opens believers up to demonic influence (1 Thes 2:9).

Following signs is dangerous. We must remember the signs God has already performed. We store these in our hearts. Then, when our faith is challenged, we can think about the past moves of God and believe. However, God does not perform miracles so people will believe. He performs miracles to both help his children, and to place his seal of approval on godly ministers and believers (John 5:37, 10:25). The one by whom a miracle comes, if they are performed in Jesus’ name, is the chosen of the Lord.


Lord, please help me call to mind your past moves in my life. I repent of needing to see signs before I will believe. Help me trust you on good days and difficult days. Give me eyes to see your miracles. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Solidarity with Jesus

John 10:19-21 WEB

Therefore a division arose again among the Jews because of these words. [20] Many of them said, “He has a demon, and is insane! Why do you listen to him?” [21] Others said, “These are not the sayings of one possessed by a demon. It isn’t possible for a demon to open the eyes of the blind, is it?”


Jesus had trouble. In the verses above he is in a crowd and some of the people listening begin to accuse him of being demonized and insane. This is not so different from what believers experience today. In Christian circles, some would call Jesus demonized. At the same time, unbelievers today would likely call Jesus insane.

Jesus definitely had trouble at times when he was sharing the truth. Yet he spoke the truth anyways. Jesus did not get overwhelmed with a spirit of rejection or self-protection. Rather, he continued telling the truth which was a true act of love. Because Jesus loved others more than he loved himself he was able to stand for truth. Jesus also loved the Father more than he loved himself. That love helped him to defeat his flesh and stand for God.

Jesus experienced rejection and shame, yet, he did not turn against God. Instead, Jesus spent time in prayer, he knew the scriptures, and he testified to the truth. And many were saved. Today we are still mandated to witness to unbelievers with the hope that some will be saved (Mark 16:15-16). When we start sharing Christ, some will slander us and call us names. These are beautiful opportunities to lay our lives down, show the love of God, and stand in solidarity with Jesus.


Lord, please lead me into a love that is greater than my sense of self-protection. Teach me to love you and others more than I love myself. Help me to open my mouth and testify of your greatness and anoint me to lead others into a saving knowledge of You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Saved by Love

John 9:23-25,33-34 WEB

Therefore his parents said, “He is of age. Ask him.” [24] So they called the man who was blind a second time, and said to him, “Give glory to God. We know that this man is a sinner.” [25] He therefore answered, “I don’t know if he is a sinner. One thing I do know: that though I was blind, now I see.” [33] If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.” [34] They answered him, “You were altogether born in sins, and do you teach us?” They threw him out.


Chapter 9 of John is the story of the blind beggar. Throughout the chapter, there are 12 references to the blind man, and 1 reference to the beggar. This really moves me. All my life I have heard this story called “The Blind Beggar.” Yet in the chapter about him, there is only one small reference to his lifestyle. Jesus did not humiliate this man by bringing up his shame. Instead, he comes alongside the man to heal his vision and to heal his heart.

Religion will humiliate a person for their sins. Love does not. Love covers a multitude of sins. In this story of the blind man, Jesus demonstrates his love. For example, Jesus never called him a beggar; Jesus never rebuked him for his sin. In the end, Jesus leads the blind man to repentance and to the safety of a right relationship with God.  John chapter 9 reveals Jesus was intent on healing and restoring the once blind man.

It’s clear Jesus healed the once blind man. It’s also clear Jesus was intent on healing this man on the inside. First, he healed his eyes so that he could see. Next, he gives the man a command which allows him to take a step of faith. Finally, he finds the man who was blind and leads him to salvation. Jesus demonstrates the gospel in this chapter. He leads a sinner to repentance through love.


Lord, help me grasp what true love looks like in a relationship. Help me love all people and help me lead sinners to repentance. Anoint me with the grace to love, Father. In Jesus’ name, amen.

The Promises

John 8:56-59 WEB

Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day. He saw it, and was glad.” [57] The Jews therefore said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” [58] Jesus said to them, “Most certainly, I tell you, before Abraham came into existence, I AM. ” [59] Therefore they took up stones to throw at him, but Jesus was hidden, and went out of the temple, having gone through the middle of them, and so passed by.


Jesus is talking to a crowd who has been calling him a demon. Now, taking it a step further, the crowd attempted to stone Jesus. But Jesus knew he could trust God. And so, Jesus just walked right out of that situation. He took one step at a time. Step by step, with stones in their hands, he walked through the middle of the crowd.

How did Jesus walk out of a raging mob intent on stoning him to death? He believed God. He believed the things he heard and saw from the Lord. Based on that belief he knew he was safe. Based on that belief he knew to pivot and walk away.

What we believe about God’s Word matters. Jesus had the Word of God in his heart and he had the scriptures. We have those same things. The Holy Spirit gently speaks to us and leads us. The Bible also leads us. If it is in the Bible, you can trust it completely. If you encounter a promise in the Word, let it guide your decision-making process.


Lord Jesus, please help me know your Word, trust your Word, and act based on your Word. Help me receive the promises and walk in them. Give me the grace to trust You more. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Little Christ

John 6:47-51 WEB

Most certainly, I tell you, he who believes in me has eternal life. [48] I am the bread of life. [49] Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. [50] This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, that anyone may eat of it and not die. [51] I am the living bread which came down out of heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. Yes, the bread which I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”


Eating the flesh of Christ is a metaphor. It simply means receiving from Christ. When we receive salvation, grace, mercy, or anything else from Jesus, we are metaphorically eating the flesh of Christ (1 Cor 11:24). The saying also nods to the coming crucifixion. However, we are looking at the metaphor, not the grounding reality of Jesus’ statement. So, the metaphor of eating Christ simply means receiving from Jesus is what gives us life. Jesus is the Bread of Life, when we receive of him, we inherit eternal life. So, here is the question, if Christian means little Christ are we to give our flesh?

Do we suffer to bless those who would come to Christ? (Rom 8:17, 23) According to Romans chapter 8, yes, we do suffer as Christ suffered. And that suffering has value. When we lay down our lives, we can then be remade in Christ’s likeness. (1 Cor 15:49) It is a holy thing to suffer for Christ (1 The 1:6, Heb 12:10). More, holiness allows us to be anointed to bring others to Christ (Mark 13:11). When Jesus died and ascended, he released the Holy Spirit (John 20:22). Christ was holy because he gave his life away (Col 1:22). In his complete giving of himself for the will of God, Jesus is the holiest (Heb 10:19-20). In giving his life away he has saved millions. We must be ready should God ask us for our comfort, ease, or luxury. We must be ready to imitate our Savior and give others access to the Bread of Life.  


Lord Jesus, you have given me so many blessings. Please help me let go of the things you ask me to give up. Please help me love others so much that I will give of myself to see them whole and reconciled to God. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Bringing Life

John 5:20-24 WEB

For the Father has affection for the Son, and shows him all things that he himself does. He will show him greater works than these, that you may marvel. [21] For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom he desires. [22] For the Father judges no one, but he has given all judgment to the Son, [23] that all may honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He who doesn’t honor the Son doesn’t honor the Father who sent him. [24] “Most certainly I tell you, he who hears my word, and believes him who sent me, has eternal life, and doesn’t come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.


It’s interesting to read the Father has given all judgment to Jesus. In another place, Jesus declares he did not come to judge. (John 12:47) Rather, he came to bring life. (John 10:10) In the text scriptures above it says the Father put life in Jesus so people will honor Jesus in the way they honor the Father. (John 5:22-23)  

The Father is leading the world to honor Jesus. In fact, while the Father is seeking the Son’s glory, the Son is seeking the Father’s glory. Part of how Jesus brings glory to the Father is by remaining in the truth. He testified what he saw and heard, even when it would bring derision. Jesus was faithful to the mission God gave him.

It is impossible to know exactly when Jesus realized it was the Father’s will for him to sacrifice his life. Yet, in his perfection, Jesus was willing to die. That may be why he could say delusional-sounding things. He could say he was granted life to pass out by the Father. He could say the Father honored him. Jesus could say all these challenging things because he was willing to exchange his life for the life of others.  


Lord Jesus, thank you for qualifying me for eternal life through your own death. I trust you and believe you. I honor you and I honor the Father. Lord, please help me imitate you and give of myself for the good of others. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Spiritual Truth

John 4:24 WEB

God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”


God is a spirit, so, why is it hard to believe that he works despite the truth of reality? He is a spirit and the works he does are spiritual. How he works is spiritual. Why he works is spiritual. His goals are all spiritual and point to a life after death. A life with God where he is, in the presence of Jesus and with the whole company of believers.

Have you noticed how hard it is to testify to God’s purely spiritual works? People tend to dismiss these testimonies as fanciful or wishful. There is no boasting in God’s spiritual works. His works refrain us from boasting. The truth is, to testify of His spiritual works can be costly. In fact, according to the truth of the Bible, his works are foolishness to the lost (1 Corinthians 1:18).

The good news regarding this is we have a truth that is founded upon reality. If the spiritual is foolish to the lost, then we need a reality-based tool to use. God is spiritual and he used the spiritual tool of anointing to inspire the writing of the Bible. No word of the Bible is apart from anointing. The Bible is inspired from the first verse of Genesis to the last word of Revelation.

The Bible is truth. We are to worship God in both spirit and truth. We must accept, recognize, and share that which is spiritual. We must also accept, recognize, and share that which is truth. When God changes our circumstances so that we have favorable outcomes, we must share, especially with other believers. When God leads us to share with a lost person we must testify from the Bible. Believers can receive the spiritual and the lost can receive the truth.

To fulfill our purpose in the Lord we must worship in spirit and truth. When we testify of the spiritual, we build up the body of believers. When we share from the Bible, we build up believers and harvest the lost. As people of the Church Age, we are bound by the great commission. Regardless of how or when the Great Commission was inspired and written, we are bound to work in the harvesting of the lost. It is our most significant purpose.

As our primary purpose, it should be our primary pursuit. Instead, many have fallen into the trap of pursuing wealth and prosperity. This is tricky because wealth and prosperity are a part of the blessing of the covenant of salvation. Yet, it is also testing for the spiritual. What you focus on in your witness or ministry is spiritual. The outflow of your spiritual condition becomes the reality of your goals and pursuits.


Lord Jesus, please forgive me for selfish pursuits. You died for me, and I am honored to pursue your direction and commission. Please cause me to become a soul-winner. I want to be a part of your harvest as the Bible commands. Please heal my spiritual health. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.