Saturday, December 31, 2011

Why Do People Follow Jesus?

SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY          JOHN     6: 22-71

22 The next day the crowd that stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was no other small boat there, except one, and that Jesus had not entered with His disciples into the boat, but that His disciples had gone away alone. 23 There came other small boats from Tiberias near to the place where they ate the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 So when the crowd saw that Jesus was not there, nor His disciples, they themselves got into the small boats, and came to Capernaum seeking Jesus. 25 When they found Him on the other side of the sea, they said to Him, “Rabbi, when did You get here?”
Words to the People

 26 Jesus answered them and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.”

When Jesus walked this earth, a vast multitude followed Him. They came for many reasons - some noble, some selfish. The same is true today. It's important to understand what motivates people to come to Christ, since not all who seek Him are really His followers. In fact, we should analyze our own Christian walk by asking ourselves, What do we want from Him? How committed are we to being His disciples?

Many of the people who followed Jesus did so because they had urgent needs that He alone could meet. Everywhere He went, the sick and demon - possessed were brought to Him - this is one of the ways that God draws us to Himself. Those who can solve all their own problems never need a Savior.

Other folks came for sensationalism. They wanted to see the signs and miracles and feel a thrill of excitement. Today some people come to church or conferences to get pumped up. However, mountaintop experiences are always followed by valleys. When hardships or challenges come, such people are quick to abandon the Lord. 

But Jesus' disciples followed Him because they genuinely believed that He was the Messiah, the very Son of God (Matt. 16: 16)

Their commitment went beyond emotions or needs. They wanted to know Christ and walk closely with Him.

Are you more interested in what Jesus can do you for you than in just being with Him? Do you find it hard to stay committed without an emotional experience to sustain you? Our physical and emotional needs can draw us to the Lord, but they should never be the foundation for our walk with Him.

Intouch Magazine December 2011 issue

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