Sermon Outline: John 18:10-27
The main focus of this passage is Peter’s failure. He is unable do what he thought he could. (Jn 13:37, Mt 26:35)
1. John’s Gospel is challenging us: You cannot live the way you know is right without Jesus. Trying to live without him is as good as denying him. Like Peter we don’t have the understanding, the resources or the strength of desire to live properly without Jesus.
2. Faith in Christ is a whole-life attitude of repentance where instead of relying on ourselves we look to Christ. This means setting our sights on obeying Jesus fully and seeking God’s help when we cannot do it. This, not our achievements pleases God! Failure to do that leads to low standards or hypocrisy.
This posture of repentance should lead to a particular way of life:
- Aim High. Don’t feel guilty when you hear God’s commands, or when another Christian gets something right that you can’t do. Enjoy the fact that God will change you. Ask him to begin to do that now. Look for “Golden Moments” to stretch your faith and really trust in God instead of yourself.
- Get comfortable with weakness. We all hide our weakness and failures because they make us feel less valuable. But actually they are opportunities for Jesus’ power to work in us. That’s why Paul says “I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” We need to be honest with God and with each other. Church not be ab place of pride or hypocrisy but of openness and confession.
- Use the means of grace. God has told us that he uses the Bible, church, fellowship and prayer to change us. If we skip these then we’re either relying on ourselves or are just not too keen to live life Jesus’ way! We’re effectively denying him.
- Know the warning signs. When we stop relying on Jesus then God will bring us to repentance. First by warning us with his Word. Then by frustrating our self-confidence, stopping us from doing the things we thought we could do. And finally handing us over to our self-righteousness until we see bad things appearing in us, anger, jealousy, stirring up trouble, outrageous sins out of nowhere. We need to know these signs!
- The Gospel won’t just appeal to people who think of themselves as sinners. It will appeal to people who want to be good. Our joyful experience of Jesus’ power at work in our own lives will lead to a confidence that people want and need Jesus as much as we do.