Pastor Art Barrett
New Life Christian Church
John 19:34-35 One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and blood and water flowed out. 35 This report is from an eyewitness giving an accurate account; it is presented so that you also can believe.
This gnarly eyewitness account leads to another, “so that” in the story of Jesus. “So thats” are always worth a pause.
“So that you also can believe” is an invitation just too good to miss. It’s an invitation saying ‘come closer.’ You may come closer to this Jesus without distrust. The original language has the invitation bowing before us saying, “others have come this way, you too are most welcome.”
The soldier, the piercing, the flow of blood and water, all say, ‘Jesus is real, He was here, He was really dead.’ The eyewitness is emphasis, You can trust this, He really laid His life down for you. Believe it.
Ten times in John we find little phrases like “so that you can believe.” Over and over our heavenly Father responds to our need for assurance. Over and over Jesus paves the way for faith, for belief, trust. “So that” points to the purpose of this passage, to evoke the fruit of faith in you.
‘Oh I believed long ago.’ Biblical faith is not static, it is constantly responding to invitation. Responding to the invitation, the gap between where I am and where Jesus bids me come, grows smaller.
On this day embrace the invitation. Today, pause and consider the cross. Jesus pierced and bloodied is real. The cross is not silent. The cross shouts, ‘You can trust Him.’
Let the invitation leak into your place of doubt and insecurity. Hear the Spirit’s voice, ‘Come closer, believe.’
Prayer: Heavenly Father may we hear the invitation to come closer today. May we take courage in the eyewitness account and respond in faith, believing still more. We pray in the name of the King whom we trust. Amen
***believe present active subjunctive