John 8:31-32 “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, If ye continue in My word, then are ye My disciples indeed;
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
To continue….to stay, be present, abide.
Here Jesus was in the treasury of the Temple,….He had forgiven the woman taken in adultery….and said that He was the Light of the world….and spoken of His Father, as HIs witness, always with Him….and that He was doing those things that please the Father.
John 8:30 “As He spake these words, many believed on Him.”
Wonderful….but Jesus would lead them on with Him….so He said….
“If ye continue in My word….”
Belief is the putting of my self, onto Christ….but it is only the beginning.
There is so much more to following Christ. We must come under subjection to His Word…then we will know the truth of things in our lives….and be free from the world and the constraints of sin!
The potter and the clay. (The Lord and us)
First, the potter chooses the clay….there are various kinds of clay, for various uses….so a clay is chosen….and placed in a bowl with water.
For next, the clay has to be made pliable in the water…..worked, so that there are no hard lumps…..no unyielding places.
Then, the clay is placed on the wheel…..finally we are going to be made into a useable vessel for the Master!
And the potter pushes and shapes…..letting the wheel turn….some places need more water applied…..some need a rougher hand to form…..
Then….we are done, right?
No….now we need to be fired…..the soft and pliable clay needs to be hardened to stand, or continue. We could never hold water, or things without being fired just right.
Then, for some vessels….the work is done….they are used. For others there is the painting and glazing….and firing; and glazing and firing again.
All, so that we may be a useable vessel, meet for the Master’s use.
Will we continue?
Our Lord Jesus says: “Continue in My word…then you will know the truth…and the truth shall make you free.”
Truth is of primary importance…..it leads us out of darkness into God’s light, for God is True. It keeps us from evil and error….and shows the way we should go. It frees us from all other ways, attitudes, and the opinion of the times….for it anchors us in God.
So Jesus says in….John 15:9 “As the Father hath loved Me, so have I loved you: continue ye in My love.”
This was spoken to His disciples….those who had stayed with Him for three years…they had continued in His word….now, for the trials ahead….continue in My love. Know it,…hold on to the truth of it,…shelter under it.
In Acts, Paul encourages those Jewish believers, to continue in the grace of God…..not in the traditions of the Law.(Acts 13:43)
In Colossians, Paul stresses that true reconciliation is in Christ.
(In Colossians, Christ is set before us as the object of our hearts. The Spirit of God is only mentioned once.)
It is His work in the cross, in a double sense: atonement for our sin….and the power of grace conquering the heart!
Therefore, Paul says to “Continue in the faith…grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel….”. “To present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in His sight:”. (Colossians 1:22-23)
In the practical part of Colossians, where home life, and job life are discussed…..we are told to:
Colossians 4:2 “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;”
Continue to pray for the work…..ours, and our church and pastor….and watch….expecting His answer….both in His Word, and in the lives of others.
(I have come to see the value of the family altar. Having prayers at the start of the day with family members, for the things going on today….a song and prayers.)
Paul, at the end of his life, writing Timothy, who was a young man when Paul took him as a helper…..yet had grown into a Pastor and godly man….so Paul says to him…
….I am going to die, I have finished my course…..now you continue yours and follow the Word….continue to grow, and finish the work you have to do.
2 Timothy 3:14-15 “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;
And that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”
Continue in the Word…..you have grown from it…..continue in it.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”
The Lord Jesus comforted by His Word,
…..and rebuked the “little faith” of His disciples….and the hard-hearted of the Pharisees….
…..and instructed and led His own…..even to restoring Peter after the resurrection….
…..telling them and us:
“Go, teaching and make disciples…with all the things I have said….lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
Let us continue in His Word, His love, His faith and grace, till we too finish our course.