A Message from the Lord

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John 1

How often do we complicate the simple message of the gospel? We add rules and regulations to it, and sometimes even require a person to shape up before God will call them His children. What is true?

We used to sing a simple gospel hymn:

I’ve a message from the Lord, Hallelujah!
The message unto you I’ll give.
’Tis recorded in His Word, Hallelujah!
It is only that you “look and live.”

“Look and live,” my brother, live.
Look to Jesus now and live.
’Tis recorded in His Word, Hallelujah!
It is only that you “look and live.”

Perhaps some of the problem stems from a misunderstanding of scripture. We think we can bring souls to Jesus. He clearly told the Jews “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws them” (John 6:44). God the Holy Spirit offers us salvation. If we reject His offer we cannot have eternal life, that for which Jesus paid with His blood. “Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from Him, comes to Me” (6:45). If we do not listen to the Spirit of God who speaks to us “heart to heart” we are guilty of unforgivable sin (Mark 12:29). “Blasphemy against the Spirit—the unforgivable sin—is ongoing hardening of your heart against the Holy Spirit who is trying to lead you to repent of sin and believe in Christ.” Kenneth Berding, Biola University

John introduces us to Jesus as the source of both light and life; the Holy Spirit enlightens us as to the Deity of Messiah/Christ so that we can receive and believe our sins have been dealt with by One who died and rose again! What a miraculous gospel! What glory! Such joy!

In a nutshell “grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (1:17). John records the message of John the Baptist because he too had “seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only who came from the Father” (1:14). Children of God will be identified by the way they live, as Jesus lived, abundant in mercy and love.

So this message from the Lord impacts not only what I say I believe but how I live it out in my day-to-day life. “Look and live!” In the One we follow there is light which will shine God’s message into hearts that are darkened by sin, folks who need relief because they know they’ve been forgiven. This might mean we have to sit on the curbside on a rainy day, holding the hand of a person who feels hopeless. What we do there means more than cleaning them up to go to church. In the silence of acceptance, as we hold someone’s hand on the rough road of life, there may be light if our love is genuine.


Look and live! Remember we may be the only Jesus someone sees. How do we represent the One who said “I am the Good Shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep” (John 10:11). The message from the Lord may be spoken by the gift of our presence, the gift of true love.

by Marilyn Daniels (


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