Daily D – John 2:23-25
While he was in Jerusalem during the Passover Festival, many believed in his name when they saw the signs he was doing. Jesus, however, would not entrust himself to them, since he knew them all and because he did not need anyone to testify about man; for he himself knew what was in man.
JOHN 2:23-25 (CSB)
Justin Giboney spoke at our home church last Sunday. He is the author of Compassion (&) Conviction: The AND Campaign’s Guide to Faithful Civic Engagement. He is also the cohost of The Church Politics Podcast. The podcast provides political analysis from a Christian worldview.
The book and the podcast help people like you and me see our political situation and current reality from a biblical worldview. They do not approach things from a Democrat or Republican perspective. They do not approach the ideas and issues of our day from the Messy Middle. They approach issues from biblical truth. I am a fan. Check out these resources. You may become a fan as well.
These verses at the end of John 2 and just before John 3, where Jesus and Nicodemus have a conversation under the cover of darkness, have always intrigued me. Many people believed in Jesus when they saw what he was doing. He cleaned out the temple courts that more resembled the State Fair of Texas than a place of prayer for all people.
People do love a rebel with a cause. Of course, they often love rebels who don’t have a clue also. Jesus knew this. He was not gathering a fan club. He was not trying to impress anyone. He was doing what was right, just, fair, and compassionate. People like that kind of thing so long as it benefits them. Jesus knew that people who cheered his coming would also one day cheer his crucifixion.
How sincere are we when we make the hard right choice, when we take the hard right stance? Our sincerity is measured most precisely by what we think about what others think about us. Jesus was not concerned about what people thought about what he did. He was concerned about what his actions made possible. He was sincere indeed. He was zealous (verse 17). His act of rebellion set things right.
Fans fade away when a more attractive individual, group, or team arises. Jesus knew this all too well. We see it show up again and again in his ministry. Feed 5,000? Gain a lot of fans. Talk about eating his flesh and drinking his blood? Lose a lot of fans. (See John 6:60-66.)
Jesus even asked his closest followers, “You don’t want to go away too, do you?” (John 6:67). The difference between a fan and a follower is displayed in Peter’s answer: “Lord, to whom will we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”
Even so, Jesus knew he had one temporary fan among his twelve followers.
“Jesus replied to them, ‘Didn’t I choose you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.’ He was referring to Judas, Simon Iscariot’s son, one of the Twelve, because he was going to betray him,” (John 6:70, 71).
Fans betray those they follow much more easily than do followers.
Do not settle for joining Team Jesus, the Righteous Rebel and Temple Cleanser. Follow Jesus, the crucified, dead, buried, resurrected, and ascended Son of God, our savior. These are the people he fully entrusts himself to.
I will follow Jesus wherever he leads.
Our Father, forgive me for acting like a Fan Boy. Empower me to say what Peter said when he asked that wonderful question, “Lord, to whom will we go?” Empower me to live in full agreement with his statement that, “you are the Holy One of God.” I am not a fan. I am a follower. Lead me onward from where I am to where you want me to be. Amen.
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John 5:19 Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, the Son is not able to do anything on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, the Son likewise does these things. (CSB)
Ezra 3:12 But many of the older priests, Levites, and family heads, who had seen the first temple, wept loudly when they saw the foundation of this temple, but many others shouted joyfully. (CSB)