If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. John 8:31
When my friend Marge met Tami at a Bible study meeting, she noticed that they seemed to have little in common. But Marge befriended her, and she learned a valuable lesson from her new friend.
Tami had never been to a Bible study, and she was having a hard time understanding something the other women in the study talked about: that God communicated with them—something she’d never experienced.
She so desired to hear from God that she took action. Later, she told Marge. “I set aside an old wooden chair, and every time I study my Bible, I ask Jesus to come sit in it.” Then Tami explained that whenever a verse stood out to her, she would write out the verse in chalk on the chair. It’s become her special “Jesus chair,” and she’s filled it up with God’s messages to her directly from the Bible.
Marge says, “[The Jesus Chair] has changed [Tami’s] life. She’s growing spiritually because Scripture is becoming personal.”
While speaking to Jewish believers, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31–32). Let’s hold to His teaching, whether it means writing His words on a chair, memorizing them, or seeking to put them into action. The truth and wisdom of Christ’s messages help us grow in Him and set us free.
What can you do in a practical way to more regularly take in the wisdom found in the Bible? How does the Holy Spirit help you understand Scripture?
Help me, God, to connect with You more and more through the wisdom You’ve given me in the Bible. And then help me apply what I learn to help me grow more and more like Jesus.
In John 8:25, the Jews asked a question that resonates throughout the gospel of John: “Who are you?” John’s gospel was written to answer this very question (20:31). The dispute which started in John 7:25–27 over Jesus’ identity and deity (is Jesus the Messiah?) continues and intensifies in John 8:12–59. Against the backdrop of the Israelites’ forty years of desert wandering during which God sent manna to feed them (Exodus 16; John 6:31) and used the pillar of fire by night to give them light (Exodus 13:21–22), Jesus proclaimed that He’s “the bread of life” (John 6:35, 51, 57) and “the light of the world” sent by the Father (8:12, 16, 18). However, the people didn’t understand what Jesus was saying (8:27; see 6:26). Jesus then told them that only the crucifixion—the Son of Man lifted up on the cross—would prove that He indeed is the Messiah (8:28, see Acts 2:36).