Thursday 26 June 2014

Bible Book:

“What are you looking for?” (v. 38)

John 1:35-51 Thursday 26 June 2014


"What are you looking for?" lies at the heart of the gospelmessage. As Jesus began to gather a band of followers around him hewas interested to know how they saw him. While that is interestingit is not the most important element in this story, what SimonPeter, Andrew, Nathaniel and Philip do not realise was that Jesuswas looking for them! These men were eager and excited; they hadidentified Jesus as the one for whom John was preparing the way,but they actually had no idea who he really was and what followinghim would involve. This doesn't actually matter because Jesus islooking for them and he gives them a new vocation, asfollowers.

In the other Gospel accounts we discover more about Simon Peterand Andrew, but only John's Gospel writer tells us something aboutNathanael. When he first met Jesus Nathanael was looking for athrilling experience. He was ready to be excited by what Jesus didand to treat him as some kind of a magician. The exchange betweenJesus and Nathanael did not go well for him and we don't know whathe said in response to the put down he got from Jesus (verses50-51). We don't know if he ever came to understand Jesus'reference to himself as the ladder of the angels (verse 51). Whydidn't Jesus send him away? Surely it can only be because beforeNathanael came to Jesus and before Nathanael had said anything tohim, Jesus had decided he wanted him to be a disciple. EvenNathanael can be a follower of Jesus.

This story is a great encouragement for all of us who come toJesus after Nathanael. If Nathanael can be chosen by Jesus as oneof his closest followers, so can we. What is of prime importance isthat Jesus is calling us to follow in spite of what we do andsay!

To Ponder

  • What do you think Jesus saw in Nathanael? What do you see ofyourself in Nathanael?
  • Which of the disciples do you feel is most like you? Why?
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