Monday, October 21, 2013

John 1:43-46 First He finds us . . .

43 The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.”
44 Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”
46 “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked.
“Come and see,” said Philip.

Have you been to a book shop lately? Perhaps a big, brand name store, or a mom-n-pop type of store? Ever looked at the "self-help" section? The "religious books" section?  You will probably see many, many books that detail the journeys of people who are searching for "the" spiritual life. The answer. The peace. The way.
Often, people spend years and years, perhaps their whole lives, searching. They find a philosopher, and listen for a time. They find a teacher, and sit and absorb the instruction. They find a preacher, and follow him for a while.  They are trying to find someone to follow.
But notice what verse 43 says....."Jesus found Phillip."  You see, Phillip did not find Christ. Christ found Phillip.
If we look in the Bible, from the very first, God is constantly seeking out His people. Remember in Genesis, when Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit? They realized they were naked, and were embarrassed (and guilty that they had disobeyed God) and so they hid. In verse 8 of the third chapter, God is walking in the garden and looking for them. In verse 9 we read, "But the Lord God called to the man, 'Where are you?'"
From the beginning, God has been seeking us out and finding us. So we should not think that we chose God -- He has chosen us!! Paul tells us:
“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world…”  Ephesians 1:4
This is an important point to make, because the realization that God has sought and found us, rather than the other way around, is vital in keeping us humble before our Lord.
Once Jesus finds Phillip, he says a very simple, single command: "Follow me."
That means to put Jesus as number one in our lives, for that is what is needed when we become Christians. Phillip feels the call, and is compelled to follow Jesus -- he leaves everything else behind. He leaves his work, his family, his possessions, his ambitions . . . everything else is lower priority when we follow Christ.
We should hold nothing back; we should keep nothing held back for ourselves. You see, Jesus does not give us any "escape clause" when we follow His leadership. It is a commitment that demands our all. That doesn't mean that we won't get it wrong from time to time, and fall short of the ideal, but our commitment to discipleship should always be there.
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. Matthew 22:37
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones. Proverbs 3:5-8
So first, He finds us ....

1 comment:

Belinda said...

Where would we be if He didn't find us?

I admit holding back for myself. I know He wants everything, but my sinful, human self just can't let go of it. Nevertheless, I strive to do that which is right in His eyes. I think that pleases Him. My striving. :)