1 September 2020 Human Nature
John 2:23-25 NLT
Because of the miraculous signs Jesus did in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration, many began to trust in him. 24 But Jesus didn’t trust them, because he knew all about people. 25 No one needed to tell him about human nature, for he knew what was in each person’s heart.
Did I read that right? Many trust in Jesus, but Jesus is suspicious of their sincerity? Wow.
It’s true that a good turn out doesn’t mean anything. People flocking to a phenomenon isn’t equal to mass conversions. We see this all the time when we look at the football field flooded with people at the end of the night at a crusade. If THAT many people were making sincere declarations of faith, the cities would be ridiculously impacted. This doesn’t mean we should stop having crusades or big churches or Christian concerts; we cast our net wide to catch a few fish sometimes, aye?
Jesus explains about human nature when he explains one of his parables:
1. There are people in a crowd who hear the message, but they let the enemy prevent them from believing and being saved. (Luke 8:12)
2. There are people in the crowd who believe, but don’t have deep roots, so they believe for a little while then fall away when they face temptation. (Luke 8:13)
3. There are people who hear the message but they think about their problems, riches, and pleasures more. (Luke 8:14)
4. Lastly, there’s a few in the crowd who hear the Word and cling to it regardless of the Enemy, temptation, problems or desires. (Luke 8:15)
Jesus knows human nature. That means he knows that all the people in the crowd do not identify with this last group of people from the parable of the soils. So how do we identify with that group, then; is it luck?
Paul says that the people in the last group of soils do this:
Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith... 7 We pray to God that you will not do what is wrong by refusing our correction... Do the right thing... 8 For we cannot oppose the truth, but must always stand for the truth... 9 We pray that you will become more mature. (2 Corinthians 13:5-9)
1. Examine what I do – compare my thoughts and actions to what Jesus teaches.
2. Trust in God’s Word over my ideas.
3. Accept correction when necessary; don’t double down & make excuses.
4. Do the right thing.
5. Never oppose the truth in the Word of God.
This is they way to maturity. This is not automatic human nature. This kind of relationship is available to everyone who lets Jesus take over their lives; it is not available to the casual converts exiting the stadium.
Thank you for helping your seed fall in fertile soil. Thank you for reminding me to examine what I think and do so that I will be more like your Son, Jesus, in whose name I pray. Amen.