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Jesus said to the Jews, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is real food and My blood is real drink. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood remains in Me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent Me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the Bread that came down from Heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this Bread will live forever.” He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. On hearing it, many of His disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” Aware that His disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where He was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning who did not believe and who would betray Him. He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to Me unless the Father has enabled him.” From this time many of His disciples turned back and no longer followed Him. “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve. Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that You are the Holy One of God.”[1]

To those who call the Holy Spirit’s Workshop a home for the worship of the Lord, the Lord, and the Lord and a place of fellowship in the Word of God and in the practice of Jesus’ words and deeds, and to those who are called and trained to be the elect of the Holy Spirit wherever you are- John 6:66 is the present juncture that we are facing as we stand together at the advent of the harder teachings and then the hardest teachings, which are being brought out of the treasure chest by the Holy Spirit as He takes from what is Jesus’ and makes it known to us. We here were forewarned last Saturday of such harder teachings and we received our first taste with the teach on Wednesday. The harder teachings and the hardest teachings are not God’s outbursts of cruelty for God is NOT cruel, He is Justice. He does not enjoy cutting us up in the razor sharpness of His words, though it may seem harsh and condemning to us at the time. No parent enjoys hitting a child but it is done out of love and discipline.

What our God enjoys is not the strike of His sword that will sharpen our minds and circumcise our hearts, but the fruits of it together with our acceptance, delight and gratitude for the work of His hands on us. By the same token, God did not enjoy the crucifixion of Jesus but He looked forward to the fruits of salvation born by one single and complete act of redemption, which was perfectly achieved by Jesus in the prescribed way because He was so mighty to save the world that God so loves.

John 6:66 is the place we are now facing. Jesus had much more to say to His apostles, more than they could bear at that time. But the Holy Spirit has come and He is guiding us into ALL truth, precious granules of truth by granules of truth, because sometimes our minds are too narrow and our hearts too slow, or the sheer volume of the revelations of God overwhelm us so that we may sit stunned as Ezekiel did for 7 days, and so the Spirit of Revelation tenderly and precisely does guide us into ALL truth towards maturity in the likeness of Christ. And so to our brothers and sisters before us who bore the heat of the day and we are now reaping the benefits of their labour, we must bear the heat and the weight of the harder & hardest words of Jesus on behalf of all those who Jesus gave His glory to so that we may be one as God is One.

I will not pretend to know what the harder and hardest teachings will entail. Nor do I know the content and context- but what I do know is this truth. This is my God who declared: I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.[2] And God’s purpose is all about bringing justice to Jesus and to the Holy Spirit. Justice to the R/resurrection in all its facets of the event, the person, the sacrifice, the eternal outcome and the sanctity.

What makes a disciple turn back and no longer follow Jesus?

Is it remembering something that should be forgotten, and forgetting what should be remembered?

What stops us in our tracks in following Jesus and listening to Him and the Holy Spirit?

What is in us or not in us that we would find Jesus’ words offensive?

Is it pride?

Is it the thorn in our flesh that we have not yet overcome in completeness?

Is it distraction by the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for the other things so we lose focus on His Son and His words to do God’s will to the end?

Is it because we have in mind the things of men, and not the things of God?

Who is above and beyond the place of John 6.66? Did you think you are at an alright place?

If you turned back and no longer followed Jesus- would you know? Would God say anything to you? Would you repent?

Have you considered your personal John 6.66 and looked into yourself? Should we take it lightly?

How do we overcome our personal John 6:66? What does it take? How closely do we press into the Holy Spirit?

How tightly do we have to hold onto Jesus’ teachings to overcome our personal John 6:66?

What is required of us, in us, so that we may not only accept the harder and hardest teachings, but also practise them, fulfil them, declare them, live them, execute them, set them up, exalt them and delight in them?

What makes a teaching hard anyway?

Do the hard, harder and hardest teachings produce the crop, yielding the 30/60/100-fold respectively?

Is John 6:66 where we forget God and remember with fondness of other things that enslaved us?

What is the freedom that we can share with God if we push through our personal John 6:66?

It is one thing to know that Jesus has words of eternal life, and believe and know that He is the Holy One of God- but another thing to practise His words and His deeds as one practises for a marathon.

We are at the doorway of John 6:66 and there is an invitation (not a question) by Jesus, “You do not want to leave too, do you?”

It is entirely your choice as it is mine, just as it was God’s sovereign choice to draw us to Jesus and bring us to this doorway. It is God’s grace that got us here on this part of His mountain and it is God’s mercy in showing us a gracious “exit” sign. In truth, it is God’s mercy for God because Jesus is not meant to lose none that the Father gave Him but raise them up in the last day. Exit if you will for there is no condemnation.

John 6:66- Are we ready to overcome it?

[1] John 6:53-69

[2] Isaiah 46:10


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