Monday, February 13, 2012

John 4:43-54

After extending His stay in Samaria, Jesus traveled north back to Galilee. We are told, in verse 45, that the Galileans welcomed Him, because many had seen Him do miracles in Jerusalem when they had been there for Passover. They weren’t looking for a Savior, but they were excited to see miracles.

Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.

“Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.” (John 4:46-48)

Contrast the attitude of those in his home territory with those in Samaria! However, Jesus was always moved with compassion and love. He knew before coming to Earth that His own would reject Him, as would most of the world. But love compelled Him.

The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”

Jesus replied, “You may go. Your son will live.”

The man took Jesus at his word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.”

Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and all his household believed.

This was the second miraculous sign that Jesus performed, having come from Judea to Galilee. (vs. 49-54)

If you are at all familiar with the story of the Roman centurion who came to Jesus about his dying son (Matthew 8), you can see the parallels and the differences. The Roman centurion knew that Jesus did not need to come to his son, but only speak the word and his boy would be healed. Jesus commended the faith of the Gentile soldier. However, in this scene, the Jewish official orders Jesus to come to his home. Nevertheless, Jesus healed the man’s son! What patience and forbearance He needs when dealing with us! How many times do we also “order” Jesus to do something for us? Lacking humility, we set our plans without asking for His input, then ask Him to bless them!

The redeeming feature of this royal official was that he took Jesus at his word! Jon Courson tells us that the man apparently trusted completely, because he certainly did not rush home. Courson writes that the distance between Cana and Capernaum is about a four hour walk, so he was not running home. When he returned to indeed find his son healed, he and his whole household believed - just like the story of the Roman centurion. So, even though the man’s attitude wasn’t the best and his faith may have been weak at first, he took Jesus at his word. And Jesus, because He loved the man and his family, performed a miracle for this miracle-seeking man - and this man and his whole household believed!

What more evidence do we need that God’s grace does NOT depend on us? How thankful I am that HE is the One who is faithful and true! His love endures forever!


No comments:

Post a Comment