Tuesday, September 09, 2014

What Do You Want?

How would you answer Jesus question?

John 1:35-39  The following day John was again standing with two of his disciples.  36  As Jesus walked by, John looked at Him and declared, "Look! There is the Lamb of God!"

37  When John's two disciples heard this, they followed Jesus.  38  Jesus looked around and saw them following. "What do you want?" He asked them.

They replied, "Rabbi" (which means "Teacher"), "where are You staying?"  39  "Come and see," He said. It was about four o'clock in the afternoon when they went with Him to the place where He was staying, and they remained with Him the rest of the day.

A popular phrase that you have probably heard is "Jesus is the answer" but have you ever thought about the questions that Jesus asked? As a teacher or Rabbi Jesus used questions to make us think and go deeper in analyzing our hearts. Instead of easy answers Jesus asks difficult questions.

It is almost time for John the Baptist to fade into the background, his ministry doesn't seem to have lasted very long, it isn't long after Jesus begins his ministry that John's ministry disappears. There isn't any reason for the crowds to keep following John the Baptist when the Messiah is the one that you should be following.

I have to wonder what the disciples of John wanted if they didn't want Jesus. John the Baptist must of had a lot of disciples around him the day that he pointed out Jesus and told the crowd that that guy is the Messiah and yet we only know of two people that stopped following John and turned to Jesus. It makes me wonder why they were following John. If they believed in his message about the coming Messiah then they should have said good-bye to John the Baptist and followed Jesus.

These two guys were very happy to see Jesus and the look on their face must have made it very clear that they wanted to be with Jesus. As Jesus notices the disciples he turns to them and makes himself available to them. That's the same thing that he does for anyone that is honestly seeking him.

Jesus breaks the ice and begins the conversation with a question. Jesus asked them "What do you want?" Their smiling faces may have turned to red with embarrassment. Was he mad that they had interrupted his day?

What do you want from Jesus? Why are you following him? We all have different reasons for beginning to follow after Jesus. Most of them are pretty selfish at the beginning of our faith journey, we want to avoid hell or we want Jesus to fix our situation in life that we created, your life is a mess and you don't know what else to do.

Instead of a direct answer the disciples ask Jesus where he is staying, that's an indirect way of saying that they want to get invited over for the afternoon, they wanted to be with Jesus for more than a few minutes on the road. They addressed Jesus as "Rabbi" and they knew that they needed to stay with him and learn from him.

Consider three of Jesus questions that are recorded in the Gospels:

✔  What do you want? (John 1:38)
✔  Why are you looking for me? (Luke 2:49)
✔  What do you want me to do for you? (Mark 10:36, 51)
We can analyze our motives and the condition of our heart by asking ourselves the questions that Jesus asked two thousand years ago. His questions will help us to focus on God and not religion, his questions will draw us to repentance, and his questions will bring to mind our level of obedience and commitment to him.