‘Something to encourage and think upon’, Tuesday , Holy Week, April 7th, 2020
This is the second in our series of thoughts by some members of All Saints Amersfoort
I would like to talk a bit about John 12:20-26 with you. In chapter 11 and the first verses in chapter 12 we have been able to read about Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead and Jesus’ triumphal entry in to Jerusalem. The crowd following Jesus was getting bigger and bigger and more and more people were hearing about Jesus and the miracles that Jesus did. “The reason why the crowd went to meet him was that they heard he had done this sign (raising Lazarus from the dead) (verse 18).”
Not only was the crowd getting bigger, but there was also more variety in the followers of Jesus. We can read in verse 20 that there were ‘some Greeks’ who wished to see Jesus. Jesus had already spoken to other Gentiles and Greeks, but it was very special that this group of Greeks came to search for Jesus. We can see this by the way that Jesus responds to Philip.
Why is this Jesus’ response? I think this is, because Jesus knows that his signs have now reached people from all classes in society. Not only are there Jewish people following and searching for Jesus, but now also Greeks and Gentiles are searching for God. Jesus’ biggest miracle, his death and resurrection, was still to come, and Jesus didn’t want this miracle to just be for the Jews, but also for the Greek and the Gentile; so that every person on earth may believe in Him and have eternal life. “But these signs are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name (John 20:31).”
Let’s take one step back though and have a look how the big crowds got to know about Jesus and wanted to know more about Him. We read earlier (v18), that the crowd went out to meet him, as he approached Jerusalem, because they heard about the sign(s) Jesus had done. They had not yet seen any signs for themselves, but they had apparently heard other people speak about the amazing signs and wonders Jesus had performed. I believe that nowadays we can have the same influence on the people around us, especially in this time where people are generally more fearful and looking for something or someone who can give them rest and peace. Are we talking about Jesus and his final and amazing sign, his death and resurrection, so that crowds will go out to meet Him and search for Him?
Just like crowds came to gather for Jesus in his final week before His death, so also we can pray that big crowds will gather in this week before Easter. Let’s pray to the Lord every day that he will gather more people to come and meet Him and let’s pray that we will have more courage to talk about Him and his amazing gift for us. A suggestion I would like to make is that you ask the Lord to lay someone on your heart, whom you can pray for each day up to Easter and the week after, for him/her to come seek for Jesus. We can be like Philip in verse 21. The Greeks knew he was a follower of Christ, so people went to him, but Philip didn’t have to do anything himself. The only thing he had to do was direct them to the Lord Jesus. How amazing is it, that the only thing we have to do, is being available and direct people to Jesus, knowing all along that it is Christ working in us.
Lord we want to ask
if you would fill us more and more with your Holy Spirit every day.
Would you show us your grace and mercy
in bigger and greater ways today.
Help us to extend your grace and mercy to the people around us.
Help us to be available for your Spirit,
so that we may be the best witnesses of you as we can be.
In Jesus name,
To finish I would like to recommend a song:
Selah – Yet Not I, But Through Christ In Me