Turn to the Table of Contents in your Bible. It has all the books in the Old Testament listed, and then at the bottom of the page it has all the books of the New Testament listed. If you count- see the row that begins with Genesis, ExodusÖhow many have you have there? Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 SamuelÖ13? You have 3 rows, and 13 times 3 is what? 39. There is a total of 39 books in the Old Testament.
In the New Testament, you count the first rowÖone, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine; three rows, thatís 27 books in the New Testament. Alright, so 39 books in the Old Testament, 27 books in the New Testament. Thereís more in the Old Testament than there is in the New Testament.
Now, Iíve heard so many Christians say, ďThe Old Testament is just old history,Ē and they donít read it or understand it. But there is a reason that this Book happens to be the most interesting book that you can find. Thereís not another book in the world that can come up to or match this one. It is tremendous. The problem is, people donít take the time and the energy to read it, to understand it, and to know what it says. This is Godís word for us.
I remember, I was sitting in a little Baptist church one Sunday, and two old ladies were sitting in the pew right in front of me. One them said, ďMiss Annie, did you bring your Bible to church?Ē And she said, ďNo! I pay the preacher to read my Bible for me.Ē Thereís a lot of people that read the Bible, but they donít really read it because they donít understand it. The Bible is a closed book. You can read it your whole life and never understand it. How do you get the understanding? Itís when you open your heart to really want to know the Lord, then it will open up to you, and you can begin to read it and have some understanding. But until your heart is right, youíre not going to see it or understand it.
Letís look at a few pages; Genesis is the beginning. The first verse of the Bible says, In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Everything that there is, God created it. He created the heavens, He created all the planets, everything. The earth, and the heavens, and everything that is in it. Thatís quite a creation, and thatís the first verse.
Now, turn over to chapter two, beginning with verse eight:
Genesis 2:8-9 And the Lord God
planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man whom He had
2 Out of the ground, made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
What in the world is this garden that Heís talking about? Now here is something that is good to know: The New Testament is hid in the Old Testament. You will read the Old Testament, but you will not find the truths and the things of the New Testament in it unless God opens it up to you so you can see it. Itís hid in there. And how do we get to the place where we can see the things that are hidden in the bible? Itís a matter of your heart.
This garden that is planted Ė when you go to the New Testament, you find out that this garden is actually the many-membered body of Christ. Look at verse ten:
Genesis 2:10 And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted and became into four heads.
So, Moses is telling us here this river is running out of the garden. He wrote this. Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible, and they are fantastic. Now, we just learned that the garden is the many-membered body of Christ, and the river is the river of life. It is the ministry of Godís life to us. Now, this river parts and becomes into four heads. What are those four heads? Oh, lo and behold, that is talking about Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John in the New Testament are the four rivers that come out of the garden in Genesis. Your main teachings that you ought to receive concerning the Lord Jesus Christ, and the many-membered body of Christ that you are to be a part of, is found in those four rivers of life that is ultimately Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. I find that very interesting.
Now, letís go to the Gospel of John, chapter 13. The New Testament is hidden in the Old Testament. What did we say- there are 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament. Why is there more in the Old Testament than the New Testament? The Old Testament is very important. Itís so important that youíre going to have to have a good heart to be able to read it and to understand it.
Do you want to really know the Lord? This is the problem that we have Ė God is Spirit. ďYeah, well, there was the Lord Jesus Christ, and He was on earth for a period of time.Ē Well, Heís God, and He is spirit. Hereís a connecting link: man is made up of body, soul, and spirit. Thatís what you are- you have this body, and in this body is the soul, and the soul is very difficult to understand and very difficult to corral, too. But your spirit Ė you have a spirit, but it does not come alive until you begin to know the Lord and to understand Him. It is spirit to Spirit. If you want to really know the Lord and to serve Him, then you must become a spirit person. Your spirit must come alive and become aware of God and serve Him.
And hereís the problem in so many Christian churches today Ė their spirit never comes alive unto the Lord. Consequently, they have their teachings of this and that, and it becomes something of religion.
Now back to John, chapter 13. Johnís gospel is a very unique gospel. We know there were 12 disciples. Three of those disciples followed Jesus a little closer than the rest. Among those three was one named John. John was the closest one to the Lord of all. He is the one the Bible speaks about who leaned upon the bosom of the Lord at the times when they met together. John wrote this gospel.
Before chapter 13, Jesus did a lot of wonderful things. He ministered to the multitudes, He healed people, He even raised the dead a few times; He did some tremendous things. However, when you begin with chapter 13 in John, everything changes. He does not minister to the multitudes again; He only ministers to His 12 disciples. From chapter 13 on, it is the ministry of Christ to His disciples.
Why is that the case? Because Jesus knew that His time was running short. He was going to be crucified on the cross, and He would be resurrected and become spirit again. That being the case, there had to be some that would continue the ministry of Christ on the earth. That was the purpose for the 12 disciples. They were to become a many-membered Christ and to continue the ministry of Christ after He left.
Letís look at the first verse of chapter 13:
John 13:1 Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that His hour was come that He should depart out of this worldÖ
Jesus knows He is leaving this world, and Heís going unto the Father. Now you have to understand the way these things are talking about. ďHe goes unto the FatherĒ- that does not mean that the Fatherís up there somewhere and Heís down here, and Heís going to go meet the Father. He IS the Father; He changes what He is. Heís not just Jesus the Nazarene, He is the Father, and Heís going back to spirit.
John 13:1 ...having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end.
The New Testament was originally written in Greek, and King James had a bunch of guys that supposedly could understand Greek. They changed it into English so we would have that English setting, but they didnít always get it just right. Where it says at the end of this verse, ďHe loved them until the endĒ, there is a particular Greek word for end, and itís teleo; it means ďcompletionĒ. Jesus is speaking about His disciples; He loves them, but He loves them until they are completed.
The love that God has for you doesnít last just a few minutes. It doesnít just last for a certain period of time, but you are to be completed, finished, a completed work. And Heís going to love you, and keep loving you, and the love the Lord has for us is a creative love. With His love, He creates us into what He wants us to be. Of course, thereís the necessity in that that we must respond to His love. Remember this: Nothing just happens! God works, and He creates, and He uses His love to do the creating.
I bring this out because from Chapter 13 of John all the way to the end of the book has to do with Christ ministering primarily to His 12 disciples: creating them, loving them. They had to become the new Christ on the earth.
Now go to John 13:33-35. Jesus is talking to His disciples:
John 13:33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You shall seek Me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, you cannot come; so now I say to you.
He said, ďIím leaving, and where Iím going, you canít come.Ē
John 13:34 A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another; as I have loved you.
How did He love those disciples? With a creativity to create them into what they are to be. And He says you must love one another in the same way that I have loved you. That means we have the responsibility to create one another with that same love.
John 13:35 By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love one to another.
This will be the telltale mark of whether you are a disciple of the Lord or not, if you have that love one for another. As you continue through the book of John, and I hope you will continue to read it, it is fantastic- look at the first verse in chapter 14:
John 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: you believe in God, believe also in me.
The Lord worked a big miracle with me. He gave me understanding of the Scriptures in the very beginning- it just blew my mind. I realized that just having a King James Bible wasn't enough. I had to learn a little bit about the Greek, the original language, because the whole New Testament is written in Greek. The whole Old Testament is written in Hebrew. You have to know a little bit of each if youíre going to really get to the real meat of the Word and to understand it. So, you canít really trust the King James translators in getting it perfect. But in that first verse, Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me, a more correct reading of the Greek is: Let not your heart be troubled; you believe into God, believe also into Me. If youíre just going to believe in Him, He can be up in Heavens, and you can say, ďI believe in the Lord; He can do all things. He is wonderful, Heís great, Heís God. I believe in that.Ē But to believe into Him means that your life penetrates His life, and there is a oneness that begins to take place. Itís kind of like a young man marries a young girl. They love each other, and as the days and the years go by, they not only learn to love each other more, they become one. They become one person, you see. Thatís what we need to do with the Lord. We love Him, but our believing in Him is going to be a believing into Him.
As you study the Bible and really learn what it says, youíll find out that thatís the name of the game- moving into His life. Do yourself a favor and begin with chapter 13 of John and read right on through to the end of that particular book. It all has to do with you. I donít know if you read one of the new books that weíve got out, but there is a message in it thatís titled ďFind Yourself in the ScripturesĒ. You are in there.
John 18:1 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which He entered, and His disciples.
They had just celebrated the Feast of Passover. Jesus and His disciples went up into a room and had the Passover. After eating the Passover, they came out of the house, walked down a path and went over the brook Cedron, and they went into a garden. On a particular occasion as I was reading this, how they had partaken of the Passover in that room, and then they walked out of that room, walked out of the house and went down this path and crossed over the brook Cedron and went into the garden with His disciples, I had this strangest feeling that came over me. When it happened, I realized it wasnít just them walking down there, I was right in the middle of it. I was walking down through that Cedron valley along with them. You want to get to the place where you begin to see and find your life in the scriptures; itís there. If you can see it, if you can find it, everything about your life is right there in these scriptures. And the most amazing thing is, you can read about the things that Christ did, and then realize that in some strange way, even before you were born, you were involved in the ministry of Christ. Itís there.
Now, let's go back to chapter 16. I want to read one little section here. I donít know if Iíve been able to stir anything up in you or not, but I encourage your hearts to give yourselves to the study of these Scriptures because your life is in it, and they hold the key to your life becoming into His life. We'll start with verse 12:
John 16:12 I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now.
There is a lot that the Lord wants to reveal to you. Some of the things He wants to reveal to you He cannot reveal to you right now. Why is that? Well, you have to grow a little bit. You donít start off with meat and potatoes, you have to have some pablum in the beginning. It depends on where you are spiritually. Itís here a little, there a little. Step by step you learn. I have many things to say unto you. God has so much He wants to reveal to you if you will get to the place where you can hear.
Verse 13 is very important:
John 16:13 Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truthÖ
As I mentioned, the Greek is just a little bit different; it says, Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is coming, He will guide you into all truth. There is a reason for the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth, and the Spirit of truth is the spirit of Christ. He will guide you into all truth. This is important. Open your heart to the Lord. He will guide you, and lead you, and teach you into all truth.
John 16:13 Ö for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come.
He will show you things that are coming. There are many things that the Lord has for you. As they are coming, He wants you to be able to receive them, and thatís why it is so very important to receive the Holy Spirit in your life, because that is His function. Thatís what He does. He leads you, teaches you, and brings to life within you all the things of Christ. Amen.
Copyright © 2019 by Henry DuBose