Sermon on Sunday, May 12, 2013 by Pastor Thomas Tate
- But though He had performed so many signs before them, yet they were not believing in Him. This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet which he spoke: “Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” For this reason they could not believe, for Isaiah said again,
“He has blinded their eyes and He hardened their heart, so that they would not see with their eyes and perceive with their heart, and be converted and I heal them.” These things Isaiah said because he saw His glory, and he spoke of Him.
- But though He had performed so many signs before them, yet they were not believing in Him. This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet which he spoke: “Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
- For this reason they could not believe, for Isaiah said again, “He has blinded their eyes and He hardened their heart, so that they would not see with their eyes and perceive with their heart, and be converted and I heal them.” These things Isaiah said because he saw His glory, and he spoke of Him.
- Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I. Send me!” He said, “Go, and tell this people: ‘Keep on listening, but do not perceive; keep on looking, but do not understand.’ “Render the hearts of this people insensitive, their ears dull, and their eyes dim,
- otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and return and be healed.” Then I said, “Lord, how long?” And He answered, “Until cities are devastated and without inhabitant, houses are without people and the land is utterly desolate…
- Yet Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as the Lord had said. Exodus 7:13
- But the magicians of Egypt did the same with their secret arts; and Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as the Lord had said. Exodus 7:22
- But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart and did not listen to them, as the Lord had said. Exodus 8:15
- Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants, that I may perform these signs of Mine among them Exodus 10:1
- Hebrew Definition of “Hardened”
- Pharaoh’s heart was hardened–
- Châzaq – strong, to be firm. It is a word frequently used to describe battle scenes.
- Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart
- Kâbêd – heavy, weighty, grievous, severe, numerous
Hebrew Greek Dictionary
- Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name… But though He had performed so many signs before them, yet they were not believing in Him.
John 20:30-31; 12:37
- “Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. “In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom…“And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him [Lazarus] to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’
- “But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ “But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ “But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’ ”
- For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins…But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep.
- “Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. “When I say to the wicked, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. “Yet if you have warned the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered yourself.
- The Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in regard to all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me from being king over them.
Sermon-based Bible Study Questions
1. Read John 12:37-38. What are some miracles that you have seen God do in your life?
2. What are some miracles God performed in your life or someone you know but at that time you or that person didn’t accept Jesus as a result of that miracle?
3. Read John 12:39-41. Who was Isaiah speaking about? If God wants all people saved why does He blind some peoples hearts? Read Isaiah 1:1-4. What did God’s people do before God blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts? How does this apply to this passage? Can you remember a time when you were rejecting God and then God allowed disaster in your life?
4. Read Exodus 7:13,22; 8:15. Who hardened his heart first, over and over after the miracles of God? In 8:15 what would happen before Pharaoh would harden his heart? Can you remember a difficult time that you prayed for God’s relief and made vows to God if He helped but when He did you would soon go back to your old ways?
5. According to Luke 16:22-31 what do people need or what has God given them to help them believe?
6. Read Ezekiel 3:17-19. What are we going to be held accountable for? When was the last time you shared the Gospel story with someone? Is this passage enough for you to start sharing more (actively seeking God’s leading)?
7. Most of us don’t handle rejection well and will avoid any circumstance that can put us in a place to be rejected. Most people don’t succeed in life from failing but from a lack of trying. Can you think of a time that you feared rejection? Read 1 Samuel 8:7. Who is it that people are truly rejecting when you share Jesus with them? Does this give you any strength to overcome your fear of rejection?