Saturday, July 25, 2015

Gospel test for 2 August 2015

John 6:24-35        The next day, when the people who remained after the feeding of the five thousand saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into the boats and went to Capernaum looking for Jesus. When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, "Rabbi, when did you come here?" Jesus answered them, "Very truly, I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For it is on him that God the Father has set his seal." Then they said to him, "What must we do to perform the works of God?" Jesus answered them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent." So they said to him, "What sign are you going to give us then, so that we may see it and believe you? What work are you performing? Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, `He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'" Then Jesus said to them, "Very truly, I tell you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." They said to him, "Sir, give us this bread always."
Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”

Reflection         “Dear God, I know that you are with me but still, would you please give me a sign, preferably in neon with fireworks. You know me, the thick hearted one who is never quite sure it really is You.” I have prayed that and similar prayers more times than I like to admit. What I am really asking is, how can I be sure, be sure that God is with me when I run out of bread and my stomach is growling? How can I be sure when I wake up in the morning and “neither Jesus nor his disciples (are) there?” 

It all boils down to wanting certainty, confidence with evidence that does not require faith. That is where miracles come in. The problem is, there can never be enough miracles to really convince me. We never know when we’ve seen the last one. I suspect that is why the disciples keep asking Jesus for more signs. Vats of fine wine, healing a child, feeding five thousand people, walking on water, all those signs are not enough to convince the disciples (and me)  so the disciples ask Jesus, “What sign are you going to give us then, so that we may see it and believe you?” Can you give us something we can really hold onto? Something we can see and feel and taste, like manna?

Jesus tries to explain. If you receive manna one day you will still be hungry the next… the same way it works with miracles. You can never have enough. But if you would just believe that you already have what you are looking for in me, you would never be hungry again. Apparently Jesus’ words fell on hard hearts. If we fast forward through John’s gospel we experience Jesus giving the disciples and us three more signs so that we would “believe in him whom God has sent;”healing a man born blind and a  paralytic and raising his friend from the dead. Still, when Jesus asks, “Who do the people say that I am…” but I am leaping ahead. 

If you found this post to be meaningful please share by clicking on the icons below. Thank you. 

I will be taking next week off for vacation. 

No comments:

Post a Comment