The argument that even Jesus couldn’t win
By Teresa A. LeNeave
Can you believe that there is a recorded argument that even Jesus didn’t win? Most of the time, he taught, healed sick people and explained to the multitudes that they needed to change; to believe in him and the fact that he was sent from God, but there were a few times that he downright argued.
You can almost hear the anger mounting between the Pharisees and Jesus in John chapter 8. The incident went something like this:
Early in the morning Jesus arrived at the temple and sat down to teach a crowd of people. Barely into teaching, he was interrupted by the scribes and Pharisees who drug a woman through the door who they had caught in bed with a man she wasn’t married to.
Jesus quickly settled that dispute by confronting them with their own sins by saying, “Anyone of you whose without sin … you cast the first stone.” They all had to turn away convicted of their own guilt. He told the woman he wasn’t going to condemn her either, but to go on home and not commit adultery again.
The incident apparently happened right in front of the entire congregation because the Bible records that he resumed his teaching by explaining to the people that he had the authority to make such a judgment. As explanation, he said, “I am the Light of the world. If you walk with me, you’re not going to walk in darkness.”
Well, that’s where the argument started.
The Pharisees accused him of boasting. “You’re just bragging on yourself,” they said. “…and your record is not true.”
“Even if I do bear record (talk about) myself, my record is true. I know where I came from and where I’m going. You don’t know where I came from or where I’m going. …I’m not alone. You wrote in the law that the testimony of two men is true. I bear witness of myself; and my father bears witness of me. That’s two of us!”
“Who is your father?” they asked getting, angrier by the minute.
It sounded like Jesus was getting exasperated when he said, “You don’t know me or my Father. I’m leaving and you’re going to be looking for me and you’re going to die in your own sins because where I’m going you can’t come.”
Again they questioned, “Who are you anyway”?
Jesus’ reply sounds like he was pushing the argument as far as he could. He said, “I’m the same person I told you from the beginning. If you believe on me, you’ll know the truth and the truth will make you free.”
Bragging about their own heritage and insinuating his was less important, they pointed at themselves and screamed, “We’re Abraham’s seed. We ain’t never been in bondage to any man. How can you say you’ll make us free?”
To that Jesus simply stated, “Whoever commits sin is the servant (in bondage) to sin. I know you’re Abraham’s seed, you don’t have to tell me that.”
“Abraham is our father,” they bragged.
“No,” Jesus implied. “If you were Abraham’s children you’d do the works of Abraham. You’re of your father, the devil, and you do what your father does; murder and lie.”
Attacking Jesus’ birth they again tried to deny his Deity by saying, “We’re not born of fornication (implying that he was born of fornication). We have one Father and that’s God.”
“If God were your father, you’d love me,” Jesus snapped back.
Attacking again, the Pharisees demanded an anwer, “Aren’t we telling the truth when we say you’re a Samaritan and you have a devil?
“I don’t have a devil,” Jesus answered. “But, I honor my Father and you are dishonoring me! …I don’t seek my own glory! If I honor myself that means nothing, but my Father honors me. You say He’s your God, but you don’t even know Him. I do. If I said I didn’t, I’d be lying. You say Abraham is your father, but he looked forward to seeing my day…and he saw it and it made him glad!
At that, the Pharisees had taken all they could and the Bible says they were so mad they grabbed up stones and started throwing them at Jesus.
Jesus hid himself and left the temple.
What does that story mean to you and me? Then, as now, there is a line that divides the believer from the unbeliever. To be a follower of Jesus Christ, we must believe Jesus is the Christ, the very son of God, or we die in our sin.
For 2000 years the same argument has continued to anger the unbeliever. The same dividing line still exists. Jesus presented the evidence, but it’s up to each individual to make the decision. Will you believe?
© Kentucky Publishing, Inc.