Wise Words

“From this time many of his disciples
turned back and no longer followed him.
‘You do not want to leave too, do you? Jesus asked the Twelve.
Simon Peter answered him, ‘Lord, to whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life.
We have come to believe and to know
that you are the Holy One of God.’”
John 6:66-69 (NIV)

Jesus had finished a sermon that offended most of His congregation. It is months before the cross and the crowds vanished never to return. Certainly, the Saviour was not happy about losing the people. Sadly, He turned to the Twelve and asked a painful question. He wanted to know if they wanted to leave also. This was one of Peter’s finest moments! We will look at his marvelous response in a moment.

During Jesus’ sermon the people spoke to Jesus.

“So, they asked him,
‘What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do?
Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness;
as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”
(John 6:30-31 NIV).

The people wanted a sign to examine first in order to then believe Him. So, it was for them a matter of sight before faith. Also, they wanted a sign greater than the miraculous meal of last night. They refer to the miracle of 40 years of miraculous food in the wilderness. They seem to say that Moses’ forty years of miraculous meals made the miraculous meal of feeding the 5,000 last night pale in comparison.

When we look at Peter’s statement, he reverses the terms and puts belief first and knowledge second. Peter is right. We must have faith when we come to the Lord. Hebrews 11:6 (NIV) tells us

“And without faith it is impossible to please God,
because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists
and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

We should never put God to the test as the crowd did in John 6. We must not only believe He exists but that He rewards those who trust in Him. Can you say to the Saviour, “I believe you Lord Jesus and I have come to know Your love and grace to me.”

The universe speaks eloquently of the existence of God. Sir Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein are perhaps the greatest physicists of all time. As they studied the universe, they were firmly convinced a Creator put everything together. As the Psalmist put it, (Psalm 19:1 KJV)

“The heavens declare the glory of God…”

So, while we did not see the miracle of the feeding of the 5,000, we only need to lift our eyes to the heavens to see the glory of God. A study of science produces faith and faith brings the knowledge of the grace and love of God.

O Lord, my God, when I in awesome wonder
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

– Carl Boberg

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