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Seen any signs?

February 11, 2010 Leave a comment

In my Bible study class I’m teaching through the Gospel of John.  It’s different from the other gospels for several reasons, but one of the main ones is that John wrote it after the other three chronological accounts (Matthew, Mark and Luke), and he structured his account with the knowledge that most readers would already know many of the events surrounding Jesus’ life, so he could concentrate on highlighting certain supernatural acts that Jesus did which served as signposts to lead the reader to “believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you might have life in his name.”  John 20:31.  This, by the way, is the reason John said he wrote his gospel.

These signposts or “signs” are pretty obvious in the gospel, especially after John deliberately labels the first two of them, calling them “the first of his miraculous signs” and then the “second miraculous sign.”  The pattern the reader discerns in the first two of the signs serves as a template for the rest of the gospel.  By the time Jesus arrives in Jerusalem for the week leading up to His crucifixion, there remains only one directional pointer to His being God’s Son–His resurrection. 

However, all but a few people completely missed these signs.  The disciples themselves saw them through a haze.  God was displaying His power, His beauty, His wisdom, His grace, His love and His truth, but they failed to see it.  Oh, they saw the gifts of bread or wine or healing, but they didn’t see beyond the gifts to the Giver.  Just think how it must have pleased Jesus if someone had praised Him more for being Him than for His gifts, if they were more content with Jesus Himself than with anything He could give them.

Signs from God confront us daily.  God displays Himself to us every day with His gifts.  May we not fail to recognize these signs of Him and glorify Him for who He is more than for what He gives.

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