John 1-5

John 1-5

Week 1: John 1-5

What has God being saying to you today? What jumped out at you?

Scroll to the bottom of this page to post a reflection, to see what others are saying and to reply to other posts. As this page covers all of week 1, do state the chapter and verse you’re referring to when commenting (to make it clear what day you’re on). If you get behind you can still contribute – it’s about committing to read God’s word rather than feeling under the cosh to ‘get it done’. Most importantly, please be encouraging and respectful in all you write (Rom 15; 1 Thess 5:11).

Below is an online copy of John’s gospel for your quick reference or if you haven’t got access to a Bible. You can change which version of the Bible is displayed by clicking on the words ‘The New International Version’. You can increase the size of text by clicking on the blue book and moving the slider.

There is also an audio version of the New Living Translation available. This link takes you straight to John’s gospel: https://www.biblestudytools.com/audio-bible/nlt/john/

28 Comments

  1. John Garrett

    In John 6:53-58, how strange and troubling it must have been to hear Jesus say that his followers must eat his flesh and drink his blood, if they were to receive eternal life! No wonder many of Jesus disciples deserted him and yet, amazingly, when Jesus asked The 12 if they would also dessert him, Peters reply was right on target; “where would we go, for you alone have eternal life?”

    Lord Jesus, thank you for being the conviction that we need to stand under you, even when we do not understand You. Holy spirit, thank you for coming to bring us the fathers teaching, council and instruction, with his loving I on us. Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your son to make clear to us the mysteries of Heaven, in ways simple enough for a child to understand, in Jesus name and to your eternal praise and glory, amen!

  2. Sarah Smith

    Chapter 3 verses 2 and 3. Jesus uses the same sentence structure as Nicodemus. Nicodemus says, “No-one could do the miracles you’re doing unless God were with him.” Jesus says, “No-one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born again”.

    Although Jesus’ sentence is more definite: “I’m telling you the truth – this is how it is.”

  3. Kevin Johnson Author

    5:24 What simplicity; what reassurance; what an amazing promise. The word NEVER is so key to our faith journey.

  4. Margaret

    Chapter 5 verse 14 After healing the disabled man why did Jesus say this?
    Surely the man was not ill because he had sinned?
    “Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.””

    • Kevin Johnson Author

      Margaret: some thoughts… I think when we see this in light of 9:1-3 (and the book of Job) we find Jesus dismissing the notion of a universal sin-illness relationship. (We both know of many illnesses where it would be laughable (if it was not so serious) to associate them to someone’s sin.) However, in this specific case Jesus does seem to indicate that sin is a causal factor in his illness and encourages him to turn from it and respond to the grace God has bestowed on him through this healing, and to avoid (what I understand to be) the judgement but could just mean an even more serious illness due to his sinful actions. Thus, he is not ill as a divine action because he has sinned but his sin has led to him being ill.

  5. John Garrett

    Three incidents stand out to me in John five; the healing of the paralysed man in versus 8 to 12, Jesus prediction that the dead will be raised from their graves when they hear his voice, (versus 28 to 29) and Jesus assertion that the scribes and Pharisees study of the Scriptures will not bring them life, but only if they come to him,(Versus 39 and 40).

    It is a sad contrast; The faith of the paralysed man, who acted on Jesus words immediately, not even knowing who he was and, the endless hours of intellectual study that the scribes and Pharisees put in and yet, they were so hard at heart, that they would not come to Jesus in faith to receive life.

    What mistake I thought thought Lord Jesus, so many people seek life in the intellectual and study in their own strength these days. Please help us be lights like John The Baptist, Who lead the least, the last and the last to find you in their darkness.

    Holy spirit, may the eyes of the intellectual and proud be opened and there is, that they might hear the voice of the only righteous judge and not the accuser.

    Heavenly father, thank you for sending your son and your holy spirit to open the eyes and ears of our hearts to hear your precious voice and call to eternal fellowship with you. Never let us forget your assurance of our place in heaven and please help us strive to spread the gospel to those who still do not know it for themselves, In Jesus name, amen!

    • Kevin Johnson Author

      Yes, John, good point – and even we are endanger of this through what we’re doing. May our reading not be theory or study but a devotion to growing deeper as followers of Jesus.

  6. John Garrett

    I find Jesus focus on real living water and his food of doing the will of the one who sent him really helpful, (versus 14-15 and 31-34).

    They are a great reminder of Paul’s later advice from the beginning of Colossians 3 to lift our eyes to things above and fix eyes upon Jesus.

    Lord Jesus, thank you for setting us the example to do what you saw the father doing. Holy spirit thank you for opening the eyes of our hearts, so we can see the world around us as Jesus and the father see it and then add to your faith your actions. Heavenly Father, thank you for having such an awesome plan for our lives, tech takes disobedient proud and I dollar to sinners and find them a place and a way of contributing to the work of your heavenly kingdom, in Jesus name, amen!

  7. Margaret

    Chapter 4 v 8
    “She left her water jar”, obviously forgetting what she had come to the well for!
    BUT shows that she was going to return and continue the conversation.
    It shows us in the conversation that there is nothing about each one of us that He does not know, and loves us just the same.

    • Kevin Johnson Author

      Yes, I love this very human aspect of the encounter. Such a small detail yet something we all do when we get distracted by something ‘better’

  8. MARGARET

    Chapter 3 v 29.
    “The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. 30 He must become greater; I must become less.”
    I have never thought of John the Baptist as being the Lord’s “best man”.

  9. Maureen Smith

    John 4: 1-3
    The Pharisees were keeping count of the baptisms John and Jesus’ disciples were performing and tried to set them up as rivals.
    It made me think that even if we don’t think we are witnessing for Christ, others are watching us and taking note. It challenged me to wonder if what they see is always a good witness.
    Please Lord, help me to be a good witness even when I’m not aware that I’m being observed.

  10. Maureen Smith

    John 3: 5&6
    The Message explains the Spirit within that you can’t see or touch and the body that can be seen and touched rather well, by using the image of a baby. It is the Spirit within growing that Jesus is referring to, when he’s talking to Nicodemus.
    The direct translations don’t have the freedom to use this analogy, but I found it helpful.

  11. Margaret

    There was a secret kept==the householder did not know how the water had become wine BUT “the servants knew”.

  12. Margaret Parkins

    3 short thoughts
    Jesus has been here from the beginning of time.

    I love the words “Come and see”, not “go away and find out for yourself.”

    The way John the Baptist does not pretend to be more than he is.

  13. Kevin Johnson Author

    3:24 I love this aside. You can almost hear the frustration of the writer having to add an “obvious” editorial explanatory note! But then, isn’t this the point…the following conversation, which concludes with one of my favourite and challenging verses (3:30), reminds me how easily we get distracted by side issues and the focus falls off Jesus. What is my current rabbit hole and how do I get back to Jesus being the focus?

    • John Garrett

      Thank you for that contrast Kevin between Jesus and a rabbit hole! I think I must have been staring myself reflection all these years through my own looking glass, instead of the one who can tell me who I really am – Time to return to him in earnest!

      Blessings and thanks for the challenge! John

  14. John Garrett

    The wine crisis could have left the host humiliated at best and disgraced at worst, so Mary’s Response is a lesson from which we can all learn. In Verse 5 she tells the servants to do what Jesus tells them, then in verse 8, to draw off some of the water and take it to the master.

    Similarly, if we do what Jesus tells us, so those in need can draw from The Spirit of Jesus in us, we, like the water jars will be filled with The Living Water of His spirit, which will become the wine of His presence for those to whom we minister in His Name.

    Lord Jesus, thank You for ‘blessing our faltering steps of faith, even though Your plan and the purposes ofThe Father should come first. Holy Spirit, thank You for filling up the jars of our lives, that we might overflow with the presence ofThe Saviour. Heavenly Father, thank You that Your thoughts and ways are infinately higher than our’s and that all your ways are just, perfect and true, to Your eternal praise and glory, Amen!

  15. Kathy

    Reading the whole chapter highlighted for me the contrast between Jesus’ reaction at the wedding feast with his actions in the Temple. The fact that Jesus used a social occasion to allow others to see his glory reminded me of how we can invite Jesus to be present at any occasion and people can come to believe in him. His mother already believed in who he was and trusted him to act. It challenged me to think about how much I trust him to act.

  16. K Johnson

    2:23-25 Sometimes people ask, ‘if Jesus turned up today, how would you respond?’ These verses are a stark reminder that even when face to face with Jesus, seeing the miracles he could perform, our human nature is fallen. We too easily believe in the sign and not the one who has authority to perform the signs. Jesus knew that when the reality of trusting in him led to personal sacrifice, people would start to fall away – he wisely didn’t trust in us! (Lord, help me to trust in you even when I don’t see the signs and wonders you can perform. Help me to bow the knee like the Magi.)

    • Keeva+Austin

      Chapter 3 reminded me again that John’s role was to ‘prepare the way For him (Jesus) – that is all’. That’s a challenge for me…..do I point others to Jesus? how can I point by others to Jesus?. If I think back on my own journey it was only because others prepared the way and got alongside me and ‘shared’ and pointed me to Jesus that I came to know him for myself.

  17. Maureen Smith

    John chapter one
    As soon as he went public, as it were, he began to assemble his team. It seems he already knew who they would be, by what he said to Nathaniel in 1: 47 – . I was surprised by the speed with which he had four of his team in place. And Simon had already become Peter. Fast moving account.

    John chapter two.
    I thought I knew this book and about events in Jesus’ life. But here, just after his baptism and the first sign of things to come, he is in the temple turning out the money changers! I always thought that happened in holy week.

    • K Johnson

      Hi Maureen, you’re quite right about the difference in John’s gospel, chapter 2. I wrestled with this a few weeks ago when studying on it for our Sunday series. Here is a helpful article on this (though not all scholars agree!): https://answersingenesis.org/jesus/when-did-jesus-cleanse-the-temple/

      The basic premise is that the writers are communicating about two different but similar events and drawing out two different theological points. It’s all very subtle and I appreciated the scholars on this point.

  18. John Garrett

    In verse ’23, ‘John uses Isaiah’s words to challenge us to go into the wildernesses of others and cry out the name of Jesus, so giving them hope. The wilderness is the only place where the ways of our hearts can be made straight and thus prepared for The Lord.

    John-Mark Coma’s book, the Ruthless Elimination of Worry is very good on the role of wilderness experiences in helping us slow down, be still and know that “god is God.

    Lord Jesus, as we wait for You, thank You for the sensitivity of Your Holy Spirit, that we might recognise the wilderness places others are in, as You work with them, straightening and preparing their hearts through Sanctification, to The Father’s Glory, In Jesus Name, Amen!

    • K Johnson

      I’ve heard about Mark’s book, John. It seems to me the wilderness makes space for us to see what is important (and not) too.

      • John Garrett

        Sorry Kathy, I think some of your comment is missing, but I think we are saying the same thing; God uses our wildernesses to remind us what is important, by taking us away from the hustle and bustle of every-day life and giving us time and space to press into Him, in The power of His Spirit.

  19. Kevin Johnson

    1:33 – I’ve never really noticed this point: that John was baptising waiting for a sign himself. When he was commissioned by God he must have been excited by the prospect of this ‘dove from above’ but I wonder in those years of people turning up and being baptised how hard the waiting was. “Is this the One?” This can be the same for us in our waiting for Jesus to return. (Lord, help me be patient in the waiting but also obedient in carrying out my calling each day.)

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