"I tell you the truth," Jesus answered, "before Abraham was born, I am!" (John 8:58)

Behold The Man!

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him. And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe, And said, Hail, King of the Jews! and they smote him with their hands. Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him. Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, "Behold the man"! (John 19:1-5 KJV)

Krystal Meyers - The Beauty of Grace


Isaiah 6:1-13
September 12, 2004

1) Isaiah’s encounter with the Lord has Him “high and lifted up.” What does this tell you about the glory of God? His relationship to sin? Compare with John 12:32. What is Jesus referring to when He says “lifted up?”

“Glory” means weight or heavy and refers to one’s reputation, importance or the weight one carries in society:

“Therefore in the east give glory to the LORD; exalt the name of the LORD, the God of Israel…” (Isaiah 24:15)

“Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength, ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name. Bring an offering and come before him; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.” (1 Chronicles 16:28-29)

“Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; bring an offering and come into his courts.” (Psalm 96:8)

By being lifted up on a cross, God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ received glory through Christ’s humility and obedience to the Father.

“He said to them, "How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?"” (Luke 24:25-26)

“Jesus replied, "If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me.” (John 8:54)

“After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: "Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.” (John 17:1-5)

2) King Uzziah, a good king, ruled for 52 years. Isaiah was prayerfully seeking God because he feared what would happen to the people without a godly king to lead them. In his vision, the Lord is pictured sitting on a lofty throne. Do you think God may have been trying to let Isaiah know who was still in charge? Who is sitting on the throne of your life? Can there be two people sitting on the same throne? (See Matthew 6:24).

3) Now, look at Revelation 1:12-18—can you see any comparison to Isaiah’s vision? This is who Jesus has really always been!

4) God’s most glorious attribute is His holiness! Matthew Henry, noted Biblical commentator says, “Power without purity to guide it, would be a terror to mankind.” Satan has power, Adam gave it to him (Luke 4:5-7; Ephesians 1:17-21; Luke 10:19) but no purity. Would you agree with Mr. Henry’s assessment of holiness?

5) Isaiah 6:1-7 clearly outlines the steps to responding to God’s revealed holiness. What are they? How do they compare to the steps to responding to the gospel of Jesus Christ? (See Acts 3:36-39; Acts 16:31; Romans 10:8-17; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4).

God’s holiness always lead us to:
1) Realization of our own sinful nature
i. “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.” (1 John 1:8)
2) Confession
i. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) God used the sense of awe and reverence Isaiah experienced to lead Isaiah to a deep conviction of sin and a strong willingness to answer God’s call to be His prophet.
3) Repentance
i. “Jesus answered them, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." (Luke 5:31-32)
4) Being Gifted for God’s Service
i. “We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:6-21)

Seeing God’s holiness always makes us look inward to our own sinfulness. Only then can we see ourselves as we really are.

“My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes." (Job 42:5-6)

God’s word does the same thing today:

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

6) In Isaiah’s vision, who initiated the cleansing and atonement? Who initiates it today? (See 1 John 4:19; Romans 5:8; Ephesians 5:1-2; 1 Timothy 2:5-6)

The process of removing guilt and other sin barriers to our relationship with God is called atonement. Atonement rededicates and sanctifies the forgiven person to God.

7) In Isaiah’s vision, the Lord’s glory filled the entire sanctuary. Some say this is the temple of Jerusalem where Isaiah was praying and some have indicated it is symbolic of filling the whole world. What does God long to fill today? (See Colossians 1:27).

8) The seraphs wings covered their faces and their feet. What attribute does this imply they had toward such an awesome God? We too, should have this same posture when approaching a holy God (Matthew 23:12), but look what we, who were created a little lower than the angels (Hebrews 6:2-8) have waiting for us. (See 1 Corinthians 13:12; Hebrews 2:11).

Seraph is literally translated “searing or burning ones.” They are only mentioned here in Isaiah and are members of God’s holy court. Their posture speaks of humility and reverence. They sing God’s praises all day long and protect His holiness. They burned in their love for God, their zeal for His glory and their zeal against sin.

9) The seraphs acted as a mediator between God and Isaiah. Who is our Mediator today? (See 2 Timothy 2:5).

10) The seraph were crying Holy, holy, holy! How can we have any hope of standing in God’s presence? (See Matthew 10:32-33; Matthew 11:27; John 6:37; John 6:40; John 14:6).

11) Why was Isaiah so undone by seeing the Lord Almighty? (See Exodus 33:20). Have there ever been any exceptions to this statement?

“Woe is me, or I am ruined” can better be translated as “I am silenced, cannot reply. Isaiah was able to see what the great law giver, Moses was not allowed to see. The exceptions are:

“She gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her: "You are the God who sees me," for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me." (Genesis 16:13) (The word used, LORD, is the Hebrew word, Yahweh, or Jehovah).

For the LORD is righteous, he loves justice; upright men will see his face.” (Psalm 11:7) (LORD is translated as indicated above.)

“When Gideon realized that it was the angel of the LORD, he exclaimed, "Ah, Sovereign LORD! I have seen the angel of the LORD face to face!" (Judges 6:22) (LORD is translated as above.)

12) Isaiah states he is a man of unclean lips. The burning coals touch his lips. Why is it important what comes out of our mouths? (See Matthew 12:34; Matthew 15:11).

13) Can you have unclean lips by what you fail to say? (See Matthew 12:36-37)

14) The coal cleanses Isaiah. What does the burning coal represent? (See Matthew 3:11). How are we cleansed today? (See 1 Corinthians 6:11; Hebrews 10:19-23; Hebrews 9:11-14).

Coal is closely related to God’s holy altar. On the Day of Atonement, the High Priest was to the coals were taken from inside the Most Holy Place. This was part of the sacrificial offering to cover the sins of the High Priest and the sins of the nation of Israel. The live coal represents Christ’s death and the cleansing blood of Christ that keeps on cleansing us from all sin.

“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Hebrews 4:14-16)

15) Isaiah was changed by his encounter with the Living God. Have you had such an encounter (admittedly, probably not as dramatic)? How has your coming face to face with God changed your life?

16) As soon as Isaiah was cleansed, the Lord looks to him as a messenger. Is God still sending his children on mission today? (See Matthew 28:18-20; Romans 10:15; 1 Timothy 1:12).

17) Is this commission just for special individuals or all Christians? Will God use someone who has not repented and been cleansed? How have you responded to God’s call?

18) Look at Isaiah 6:8—can you see evidence of the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) in this statement?

19) Isaiah was sent to harden the hearts of these people? Who are “these people?” Does God or anyone else deliberately harden someone heart or was Isaiah sent to “reveal” the darkness that was already in their souls? (See Isaiah 5:24b; Matthew 13:9-16; John 3:19).

20) If we are sent to enlighten others, how important is it that we have a clear knowledge of God ourselves? (See Luke 6:39).

21) Isaiah was given a very difficult mission—God told him the people would reject his message, it would not lead to their repentance rather to their utter doom. Can you feel Isaiah’s pain? “How long?” (vs. 11). Do you feel it would be difficult to plant seed when you know ahead of time it will not produce? We are commanded to plant seed, just as Isaiah did. Does the seed we plant always produce a good crop? (See Matthew 13:3-8). Who is responsible for sowing the seed? (Matthew 13:37).

22) God doesn’t leave his prophet without hope (Isaiah 6:13). What or Who is the holy seed God is referring to? (See Isaiah 11:1-5).

23) God has promised that a remnant will survive out of the nation of Israel—one that will see and hear (See Isaiah 29:18; 35:5; 35:10).

24) And, in case your wondering where we fit in—look at John 15:1-11; Romans 11:11-30!

25) Psalm 24:5 tells us that we will receive the Lord’s blessing. Are we capable of receiving it now? (See Romans 4:6-8; Galatians 3:6-9; Ephesians 1:3; Revelation 19:9). Are we blessed just for ourselves or to be a blessing? (See Genesis 12:2-3).

26) The Book of Revelation assures us that all will be set right on the day of God’s choosing. How can we as God’s children bring him blessing, honor, glory and power today?

With our prosperity (See Proverbs 3:9-10)
With helping the poor (Proverbs 14:31)
With keeping the Sabbath (Isaiah 58:13)
Walk humbly and justly (Micah 6:8).
By our Faith (John 17:6-11)


Exodus 33:123
September 5, 2004

1) The Israelites had deeply grieved God—they had just bowed down and worshipped a golden calf. Yet, He remains faithful to His promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and attempts to send them into the promise land. There’s just one catch—His presence will not go with them. That’s like telling a Christian you can have all of heaven—but God and Jesus won’t be there. What was the Israelites immediate reaction? What would yours be? Can Christians grieve God—see Ephesians 4:30. Though we sin and hurt God, what promise does Hebrews 13:5 give us?

2)God commanded the children of Israel to remove their ornaments. Read Genesis 35:4 and explain why this act of repentance was necessary before God could move.

3) Though God threatens to destroy the entire nation, can you see Him extending mercy in verses 33:5-7? Explain.

4) What image comes to mind when you hear the words, “stiffed-necked?” Did you realize that this is actually the 3rd time God calls Israel by this name. See Exodus 32:9, 33:3, 33:5. What exactly does this statement mean?

5) The people recognized that Moses had a unique relationship with God (vs. 12-17). Does your personal relationship with God and Jesus Christ cause people to stand and worship?

6)See Exodus 33:12-16—Moses intercedes for the people. This is an action of a true leader. God had already decided to offer mercy—he was just waiting for someone to intercede in Israel’s behalf. See Ezekiel 13:5. Have you ever “stood in the gap” for someone? Who does this remind you of? See John 17, pay particular attention to John 17:20 (this includes you and me).

7) In Exodus 33:12-13 Moses, in essence, asks to know God—to understand Him. Are we more interested in what God can do for us than in actually “knowing” Him? Read Jeremiah 29:13; Philippians 3:10 and John 14:8-9.

8) Confident that God was listening, Moses is emboldened to make a further request of God—to see His glory! What does God allow Moses to see? Is God’s goodness and his glory one and the same? Explain. Look ahead to Exodus 34 to see how God describes Himself. Wow!

9) God told Moses that no one may see his face and live. See Genesis 32:24-30. John 1:14.

10) God hid Moses in the cleft of a rock. Who does Scripture say the Rock is (1 Corinthians 10:4?) Are you safely hid in the cleft of the Rock?



John 12:12-19 (Monday)
Around 430 B.C., Malachi, the last of the book of the Old Testament was written. At the point where we pick up in the book of John, the Jewish people had been without a prophet—without a spoken or written word from God for over 400 years!

Last week we touched on the silence of God. It is quite often in the silences that our faith is most strongly tested and refined. (See Psalm 28:1; Psalm 35:22; Psalm 83:1; and Psalm 109:1.)

Have you ever experienced God’s silence? How did it impact your life? What enabled you to hold on—to stand firm in your faith?

In these passages, the crowd following Jesus into Jerusalem were most likely the same people who had witnessed his many miracles, including raising Lazarus from the dead (see John 11:1-44.) Here, we find these very same people welcoming Jesus into Jerusalem in a triumphal procession worthy of a king of the Jews. In fact, they even called him the King of Israel!

Although God had been silent, it is amazing that the people still had a hopeful anticipation of His promises! And, what we see happening here is prophecy actually being fulfilled! See Psalm 118:25-26.Hosanna! This had become a word used to offer praise to God and is translated as “Saves.”

In Matthew 1:21, our Lord is given the name, Jesus, which is the Greek form of the Hebrew name, Joshua (Yeshuwa`, meaning, “the Lord saves or he will save.”) It is interesting to note that Joshua was God’s chosen man to lead the Hebrew children into their earthy promise land, while Jesus, the God-Man, leads us into our spiritual Promise Land--heaven.

How were the people hoping to be saved? See Zachariah 9:9.

Gentle and riding on a donkey. A true picture of our precious Savior and King, clothed in all the glory of His humanity and His humility. This is not us, in our feeble and vain attempts to reach up to a fearsome and unapproachable God. No, this is our loving Father, reaching down to us. God—in human form, acting out of humility and obedience—meeting us at the point of our greatest need! This is the story of God’s plan of salvation and redemption!We would do well to take Jesus’ own advise and “…learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls..." Our souls. Always, always the desire of God is to “save” our souls! (See 2 Corinthians 5:18.)

By the way, the return of our King will be much different from the humble entrance we witness here. (See Revelation 19:11-16—Glory!) Humility does not come easy for us humans. This is evident in the fact that the Jews wanted an earthy kingdom, with an earthly ruler—me, me, me! Where is my next blessing! (Hey, I’m saying this to me, too!) They would not or could not see past the worldly into the eternal!

A powerful example of the rejection of God is when the Israelites asked the prophet Samuel for a king to rule over them. See God’s response in 1 Samuel 8:4-7.God Himself was Israel’s King—and they were not satisfied! Hard to imagine, choosing man to rule over us rather than God, who loves us. What do you suppose was in their hearts to lead them to make such a request? (See Matthew 13:15; John 5:37-43.) Who is the one who will come in his own name?

Since Jesus uttered these words, history tells us that at least 63 self-proclaimed messiahs has led many astray. Ultimately, Jesus’ words will be fulfilled in the anti-christ—the one who hates God and openly opposes His Son, Jesus Christ. (Read Daniel 9:26-27 and Revelation 13.) Don’t let this trouble you, dear ones, I’ve read the end, we win! (See Revelation 20.)

Are we often times guilty of de-throning God? What is the tragic result? (See Luke 14:26.) Less we be too quick to judge--I think it is important to remember that they were blind. and they were on the other side of the fulfillment of God’s promises through Jesus Christ. Even the disciples did not fully understand Jesus’ purpose until after His death and resurrection. (See Acts 1:6-9.)

Earthly kings—God laughs and scoffs at them! (See Psalms 2:1.) Notice how God speaks of the One He sets on high. How does God address Him?

Getting back to the text! The Pharisees are beside themselves and exclaim, “We’ve lost! Look, the whole world has gone after him!” What were they so afraid of losing? ( See Matthew 23:1-15; John 12:42b-43.

Were they correct that the whole world had gone after Him? (See John 1:9-14 and John 3:19-21.)

John 18:33-40 (Tuesday)
We need to go back a little bit here. Pilate had been warned by his wife about Jesus. (See Matthew 27:19.) Perhaps this is why he tried to find a human way to cleanse himself of Jesus’ death.“

Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus puts a little "spiritual spin" on Pilate’s question, and asked Pilate if he was asking out of his own desire to know the truth. (Who is really on trial here?)

Whether we know it or not, this is a question we must all come to grips with. Who is this Man? (See Matthew 16:15.) I hope you have taken the time to consider your own personal response to this question. If not, please speak with me or with one of our lead pastors! Your response is a matter of eternity—life or death! (See Deuteronomy 30:15-20. Chose life!

“My kingdom is not of this earth.” (Yet!) Closing following the promised Messiah, or Savior, the kingdom of God is one of the most underlying themes of both Testaments. Jesus taught His disciples to pray, asking that God’s kingdom come! The gospel of Matthew alone mentions the kingdom of heaven thirty-two times and the kingdom of God four times! Read Revelation 11:15b to see what God’s purpose for earth has always been!

Pilate asks a question that has probably astounded, and perhaps puzzled many who have read it, “What is truth.” Do you sometimes question what is true about life, or maybe, what is true about yourself? (See John 1:14; John 1:17; John 3:31-33; John 7:17-18; John 8:32 and last, but certainly, not least, read John 14:6!) So, describe truth. Can you understand why Jesus answered that those who love truth will recognize what He was saying was true?

John 19:1-6 (Wednesday)
The verb for the actions taking here is a repetitive verb—meaning that Jesus was not hit once, was not mocked and spit upon once—but, over and over again. (See Isaiah 52:13-15.) Purple was the most valuable of all dyes and was the color of royalty. A very costly robe for Jesus—fit for a King! A crown of thorns. Galatians 3:13 reminds us that Jesus became a curse for us—so that we would not have to be cursed. Read about the curse poured out by God upon the serpent, Adam and Eve as the result of sin entering the world in Genesis 3. Aren’t you glad Jesus took this curse upon Himself. The final curse, our great enemy, death, is destroyed once and for all when Christ returns! Yeah, God! (See 1 Corinthians 15:26.)You know, I sort of felt sorry for Pilate as I read all the different ways he tried to squirm out of crucifying Jesus. He appealed to their sense of justice—they demanded a murderer be released instead. He appealed to their compassion—they had none, even after witnessing how brutally He had been treated. Yes, I sort of felt sorry for poor old Pilate, that is, until I read Luke 23:6-12. Pity just went right out the window! You know, he had the power—he let fear of the Jews and Caesar outweigh his own judgment and his own declaration that Jesus was an innocent man. In reality it was fear of loss of power and position, yes, even fear of his own life that motivated Pilate. I guess you can dismiss what he did if you, like Pilate, fail to recognize Jesus for Who He really is—our King!

John 19:12-16 (Thursday)
Having a Jewish person tell a Gentile authority that he was not a friend of Caesar is so ironic. The Jews hated being ruled by the Romans! You can really see the desperation here! Then, the say they had no king but Caesar—unbelievable. Actually, Herod was ruler or king over them, but they went over his head and went straight to Caesar, the emperor! Upset someone who thinks of himself as being a deity, and boy, you are asking for trouble! Politics in action! Actually, claiming to have no other king than Caesar was blasphemy for them—the very thing they accused Jesus of! (Remember, day one—question 7!)

John 19:17-22 (Friday)
It was common practice for criminals to have a sign placed on the cross over their heads announcing their crime against society. Pilate made a bold move here—and I have to give him credit. “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” Now here is where God’s wisdom truly confounds the wise. The mocking sign was actually true! And, no one passing by could fail to interpret it's intent and purpose because it was written in the most commonly spoken and written languages of the region--Hebrew, Latin and Greek! Naked, exposed, and lifted up—Jesus was on the very threshold of fully bringing about His kingdom! See what Jesus predicted in John 3:14-15 and John 12:32. Can you see how high God’s ways are above our ways? (See Isaiah 55:8-9.) Oh, glory to God!

What is the difference in the sign saying, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews” and “He said, I am the King of the Jews?” How would you have the sign read?

Beloved, I know it appears that man, and man alone, is behind what took place over 2000 years ago. Jew, Gentile--whatever! Go back and look at God’s promise to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:15. In today's passage we are actually witnessing the battle for earth and man! Sadly, satan indeed bruised Jesus’ heel. Oh, but one day, (soon, please God) we shall all be witnesses to Jesus bruising satan’s head! (See Ephesians 6:12.) Come quickly, Lord Jesus!