Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.


Notice that scripture never tells us anything about the way Jesus looked.

                                      Was He tall?

                                      Was He black or white?

                                      Did He have green eyes?

In appearance, Jesus was no different from any other man. He didn’t stand

out in any crowd by the way He looked.


Over and over again, the New Testament tells us that the only thing that set

Jesus apart from other men was His word.


They wondered at the gracious words

which proceeded out of His mouth.


They were astonished at His teaching,

for His word was with authority.


            “Lord, to whom shall we go? You

            have the words of eternal life.”


When the temple police were sent out to arrest Jesus, they came back



“Why did you not bring Him?” asked the chief priests.

The police answered, “No man ever spoke like this man!”


Jesus knew very well that the words that flowed from His mouth and had

 such power were not His own.


“The words that I speak are not mine, they come from the Father.”


Yet, Jesus repeatedly called them His words.


“If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will.”


“If you continue in my word then you are my disciples indeed, and

 you will know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”


“It is the Spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail. The words that I

have spoken to you are Spirit and life.”


What gave these words such power,


                                                      -    that Jesus could rebuke a fever,

                                                                  and it would leave,

                                                      -   or a fig tree,

                                                                  and it would wither,

                                                      -   or a demon,

                                                                  and it would flee,


or give a man a new name and the man would begin to turn into the likeness

of that name?


“You are Peter the Rock,” and everybody that knew Simon laughed.


But it wasn’t long before that spoken word of Jesus became substance in

Peter’s life.


What was it that enabled mere words of Jesus to remove a million tons of



“Your sins are forgiven,” and the man or woman to whom Jesus spoke

knew that it was done.

“Which is easier to say, ‘Your sins are for­given,’ or to say, ‘Rise and

walk?’ But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on

earth to forgive sins, rise, take up your bed and go home!” And the

paralyzed man got up and walked.

This is why those words had such power, although nobody understood it at

the time: Every word Jesus spoke was spoken from the Cross.


When Jesus said, “Your sins are forgiven,” he was not saying, “That’s all

right. God understands. You’re only human.” Jesus was saying, “Your sins

are forgiven because my blood covers them.”


And when Jesus commanded the lame to get up and walk, He was not

performing magic. He was absorbing their diseases and lameness and

blindness and death into His own sacrificed body. Jesus was proclaiming

healing through the lashes that were to be laid on Him. And when Jesus

took authority over demons, that authority was drawn from His coming


His visage was so marred - more than any man.

And His form more than the sons of men.

So He shall startle many nations; the kings

shall shut their mouths at Him.

When He rebuked a devil, or a spirit of hypocrisy, the evil would look up and

see the Cross and His marred visage and shudder and flee.


Moreover, these words had power because every word Jesus spoke came

from a life that was utterly given over to the Father’s will.

“I do nothing on my own authority, I did not come to do my own will,

 but the will of him who sent me.”

So when Jesus said to a man, “Follow me,” it was not, “Follow me

while I do my own religious thing and build up my name.” But,

“Follow me to the Cross. Follow me as I do the Father’s will and you

will end up with me at the Throne of God.”


Yes, and these words had authority because every word Jesus spoke was

spoken for our salvation.


Jesus did not come here to destroy us, or demoralize us,

         or to make our lives miserable.

He came to save us from the wrath we deserve. And every word He

spoke, even the hardest word, was for our good.  

“Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”

What we need to understand is that Jesus’ words, which have indeed

remained as He said they would, are not just words. They are His words.

This means that He is in them, making them live,

making them do what they say.


If Jesus Christ is in our midst when we gather in His name, the proof that He

is in our midst is not His appearance. Can we see Him with these eyes? It’s

not even the presence of signs. There may indeed be miracles of healing

taking place. And these signs will be encouraging to those who are healed

--- and to the rest of us. But the real proof that Jesus Christ is among us is the

presence of His words.


If Jesus is in our midst when we gather, then somehow He is speaking to

every one of us who is willing to come down off his high-horse and listen. We

begin to hear in our hearts,


           —    words that are not from earth,

           —    words that are spirit and life,

           —    words that pierce through our masks

                  and divide flesh and spirit.


To one of us comes a word of forgiveness.


“Your cry has been heard child, your sins are forgiven.” Jesus is

saying that to you and you know it.


To another comes a word of warning.


“Wake up and repent before it’s too late. If you will not awake I will

come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon



To another comes a word of encouragement.


“Fear not, I am with you.”


To another a word of rebuke.


“You're lying. You’re playing games. You’re leading a double life.

Confess the truth and repent.”


And, by the way, the Lord does not stop speaking when our meeting is over.


            —   He goes on speaking to us into the night.


            —   He speaks to us when we awaken in the morning.


And in countless ways all through tomorrow and every tomorrow.


But whether we become what our Lord’s words desire to make us,

whether they quicken us,  cleanse us, and transform us into sons and

daughters of God, depends on what we do with those words.


The vast majority of people to whom Jesus spoke in the

days of His flesh let the words roll by.


“Gracious words, yes, but not for me.”


And that's exactly what many of us have been doing.


             -   This is why we hear and hear and nothing ever happens.


             -    Why we come to church, fellowships, bible studies, prayer

                  meetings, but our lives never change.


             -   This is why we keep rebuking those mountains and they

                 never move.


We’re not listening to Jesus’ words. We’re too taken up with our own.

If we really want to see Jesus Christ and become like Him, three questions:


1. Will we recognize Jesus’ words for what they are?


The words that Jesus speaks are our salvation. They are spirit and they are

life. We don’t have to look any farther. Our salvation is not in signs and

wonders, not in profound religious thoughts, not in ecstatic spiritual flights,

but are the  words Jesus speaks to us.


When I realize that this is Jesus saying to me, “Your sins are forgiven,” in

that instant my life is changed.


“Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds

out of the mouth of God”....and every word that proceeds out of the

mouth of God comes to us through His crucified and risen Son.


But how will I know that it’s Jesus speaking to me? My friend, you’ll know.


        —   If your heart longs for the living God, you’ll know.


        —   If you are poor in spirit and if you hunger and thirst after

              righteousness, you won’t be misled.


The only ones who are taken down the primrose path by false christs are

those who want to be misled. They’re not looking for God, they’re looking for

someone to flatter them, or excite them, or give them a short-cut to glory.


2.  Will we submit to Jesus’ words? Put ourselves under them?


If the word of Jesus is calling for something I am not doing, will I turn around

and go His way no matter how hard it seems?


Or, if the word of Jesus is a promise that seems just too good to be true, will

I believe with all my heart?

“If you who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how

much more shall the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who

ask Him.”

           -  If He told you that, that’s the way it is.

 3.  Will we hang on to Jesus’ words and let them rule in our hearts?


                                           —  Soak ourselves in them.

                                           —  Saturate our minds.


Not just in Jesus’ words in the gospel narratives. Jesus speaks in Genesis,

Psalms, Job, Jeremiah. If we hang on to them, the words of our Lord

become a Voice of Truth that continuously speaks within us and shows us

which way to go.

“If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will

and it shall be done for you.”

You wonder why your prayer life is dry. It’s because His words are not

abiding in you. “0h, but I can’t remember them”.  You will. I don’t care how

bad your memory is, the words of Jesus that you take into your heart are

incorruptible seed. They burst open when  

-   You’ll be walking down the street and you will hear Him say, ‘Ask,

    and you shall receive.”


-   You’ll be on your way to work and you will hear Him say words

    you didn’t even know you remembered. Just the words you’re going

    to need that day.


“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”

Whose words are we listening to?

Whose words are we living by?


lf we are clinging to any other words but His, we’ll be swept away when the

storm comes.


God help us to take Jesus’ words into our hearts and live by them, that we

may still be living by them when every mountain on earth has turned to dust.

Still be living by them when the earth itself is no more.