“THE FLESH PROFITETH NOTHING!”
by Bob Thompson
The subject of John 6 is Salvation:
Vs. 35 - “…I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst.” It is coming to Christ and believing on Him that rewards the hungering, thirsting soul with eternal life. Matt. 5:6 puts it like this: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled.”
Vs. 44 - “No man can come to Me except the Father…draw him…” And who will the Father draw that He may give him (or her) to the Son? Those who have truly believed on Christ. See vss. 35, 64, 65. (not “the frozen chosen.” as Calvinists teach).
Vs. 53 - “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you.” Many of His disciples said, “This is a hard saying; who can hear it…and they walked no more with Him.” (vs. 66)
But the Lord had already clarified what He had in mind by the words, “It is the Spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing.” Vs. 63. Had those disciples who walked away from Him been had been hungering for truth instead of the loaves and fishes (with which He had fed the five thousand), they would have understood this. See John 6:24-29.
Have you ever wondered why is it that in man’s quest for heaven “the flesh profiteth nothing?” Why can’t man’s charitable deeds of kindness, his compassion and self-sacrifice, or strict obedience to the Mosaic law, or trying to live right, do right, think right, why these things can’t move the hand of God to save and bring him into glory? The answer is simple: it’s because God has said that “no flesh should glory in His presence.” 1 Cor. 1:29. Or, as Paul was led to write it, “the gift of God [of eternal life] is “…not of works lest any man should boast.” Eph. 2:8-9.
The Second Adam’s (1 Cor. 15:45) `substitutionary death on the cross on our behalf, (2 Cor. 5:19) and His death-conquering resurrection (1 Peter 1:21) is all that has ever availed the sinner who would reach the eternal treasures of “…fullness of joy…[and] pleasures forevermore.” Psa. 16:11. This is because salvation from the guilt and penalty of sin is all of Him or none of Him; there is no middle ground - and no amount of ingeniously contrived substitutes, heart-breaking sacrifices, or all of earth’s greatest treasures combined, will suffice!
What gripped my heart and mind that Sunday morning at the so-called Church of the Open Door, went beyond God’s salvation plan. It was the application of John 6:63 to my walk that turned me around and started me off in the right direction. Other Bible verses were soon brought to my attention, the Lord using them to assure me that I had made the right decision, plus adding to my understanding as to why, in spiritual matters, “the flesh profiteth nothing” during our pilgrim journey with the Lord. Here is a sampling of said verses:
1. Phil. 3:3 - “We are the circumcision which worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.”
2. 2 Cor. 5:16 - “Henceforth know we no man after the flesh…”
3. 2 Cor. 5:7 - “We walk by faith; not by sight…”
4. 1 Thess. 3:1-3 - “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth, for ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”
5. Romans 14:17, “The kingdom of God is not meat and drink, but righteousness, peace and joy in the holy Ghost.”
6. Gal. 3:3 – “Having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?”
It was these and other crystal clear truths that gave me the strength to put down my crutches of religious traditions that I had been leaning on for so long, including pagan holidays and organized religion, and walk away a free man - never to look back.
Allow me to add one more word. There has never, ever, been a time in the history of mankind, when it comes to true worship, that John 6:63 has not been the norm. Why is this? It’s because, as we’re told in John 4:24, “God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth.” God help us all to believe it and walk in it!
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