(10) The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the Sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed. (11) He answered them, He that hath made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed and walk. (12) Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed and walk? (13) And he that was healed wist not who it was: for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in that place. (14) Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing thee. (15) The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole. (16) And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the Sabbath day. ( John 5:10-16 KJV)
This was after Jesus had healed the man who had been at the pool of Bethesda. The scripture says that the man had an infirmity for 38 long years, but I’m not here to talk about the healing of the man at the Bethesda pool. Instead I want to talk about the reactions of the Jews after Jesus had made the impotent man whole. A couple of years ago I begin to realize that not everyone who followed Jesus, followed him because they thought of him as their Messiah, or even because of the fact of the miracles that he performed. From the raising of the dead, to the blind being able to see, the lame being able to walk, to people being freed from demons, even to him feeding the multitudes. A majority of the people followed Jesus because they believed he was the Messiah or because of some need of a miracle. Then there was those mainly the Pharisees and the Sadducee’s and a few Jews who followed him to find fault in what he did and what he taught. They followed Jesus just so that they could persecute him! Do you realize that it’s still like that to this very day there are many atheist and agnostics who follow Jesus hoping to find fault in him or with him. Now many of you may say well atheist don’t believe in Jesus any way. True, but did you know that a majority of them do read the bible. Not because they believe that the bible holds the answers to eternal life, but so that they may be able to fault with God himself! All over the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John we see the Pharisees and Sadducees following Jesus only so that they could persecute him or to trip him up in his teachings. I could never understand why they were so offended every time Jesus healed on the Sabbath. Then I begin to realize that it offended them because Jesus concentrated more on the needs of the people, then the needs of the law. The Pharisees and the Sadducees were more concerned with the keeping of the law that they would not lift a finger to help a dying man if he needed help on the Sabbath day of rest. So they followed him to find something that they could use against him simply because he made them look bad. Wow!
Then there are those who follow him hoping that they may receive something of him. Something that has nothing to do with eternal life. If I’m to be honest I fall heavily under this category. Sometimes we will follow Jesus because we want something in particular and we see him as a means to get what we want. Jesus answered them and said, Verily Verily, I say unto you, ye seek me not because ye saw the miracles, but because you did eat of the loaves, and were filled. ( John 6:26) Jesus was flat-out telling them that you do not seek me because of the miracles that you have seen me perform, but rather because you did eat of the loaves. In other words he was saying that it’s because I fed you of the things of the physical nature. It’s the reason why you are seeking me out. It’s because you think that I’m the way to the expensive cars, and the fancy houses, you seek me because you see me as the way to that perfect marriage or because if Jesus is on your side it will open the doors for you career wise. But what if we follow Jesus and none of these things never happen? What if we followed Jesus and instead of that expensive car we have a bus pass, and instead of that fancy house you have to live in a run down one bedroom apartment. Would you still follow him? God asked me Aqua if I never bring that husband you desire, will I (God) be enough? Will you still follow even if you don’t get what you want. Even if that promotion never comes and instead of being CEO your stuck at the intern level. Will you still follow him? The bible tells us not to labor for the things that will perish. The things of this earth but instead we are to labor for everlasting life. The things that we won’t be able to see on this side of life, but when we get to heaven there will be an everlasting reward.
Not every one follows Jesus because of the two things that I mention, but I pray that whatever reason that you are following that you know the Jesus who you are following. what I mean by this is. (47) And while he yet spake, Lo Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priest and elders of the people. (48) Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying Whomsoever shall I kiss, that same is he hold him fast. ( Matthew 26:47-48) In verse 48 it says that Judas had to give them a prearranged signal in order for them to know which one was Jesus. I found that strange they (the Pharisees) followed Jesus for three years, but they had no idea who he was! That’s what I meant when I said know the Jesus that you are following. we shouldn’t need someone to give us a prearranged signal before hand, not if we’re following Jesus for the right reasons. I pray that you won’t follow Jesus in hopes of trying to trip him up because if that is your intent on following him. Then you will have missed the love and compassion that is Jesus. You will miss his mercy and his grace that he wishes to bestow upon us. I pray that you won’t follow Jesus because you view him as a personal genie, someone to grant our every wishes and desires, because he’s bigger than our desires. follow him because he knows what’s best for our lives and that he would rather do a work in us first before doing that work around us.
I think that we should constantly reevaluate our walk with Christ. We should constantly ask ourselves and make it personal. Why do I follow. Is it for the right reasons.