It’s a Matter of Heart

Message\Application: In John 2 I took a few steps back to observe some details in an otherwise, very familiar story so I’m just going to throw them out there for observation. My first observation was when his mother came to him with the problem of the wine running out at the wedding. Although this was his mother, he addressed her with formality and appeared to be setting a boundary by asking her “what does this have to do with me?” and informing her that it was ‘not his time yet’. In spite of this, Mary didn’t argue or plead with him. She looked at the servants and told them to do whatever he told them to do. When the miracle was performed it was not known publicly. The servants (and Mary) knew so I always assumed that the sign was for the servants, but verse 11 tells us that “Jesus displayed his glory and his disciples believed in Him.” This tells me that the boundary Jesus appeared to be setting was to make it clear that his priority was making himself known to his disciples. It had always confused me when Jesus performed huge miracles and then told them not to tell anyone. He wasn’t there to wow the crowd or become famous. He came to make a life changing impression on the 12 men he chose to be his disciples so that they would revolutionize the world. Jesus was personal then and still is today. The next observation I made was when Jesus went into the temple and was enraged by the misuse of it’s purpose the focus always appeared to be on the leaders and the people in the temple. What captured my attention this time was that as his disciples watched him fashion that whip and passionately clear the temple complex of all of that commerce scene, his disciples were making some observation of their own. They remembered past scripture that said “Zeal for your house will consume me.” Not only did they draw from the past in that moment as they recognized the significance, but Jesus also planted a new seed for his disciples to come back on in the future when he told the Jewish leaders “destroy that sanctuary and I will rebuild it in three days.” They had NO idea what he was talking about and Jesus didn’t explain. He just left things there to be thought back on later on. As I read the New Testament I find tons of these “easter egg” items where Jesus left seemingly confusing statements with no explanation on purpose because he knew that his disciples (and anyone else with a genuine heart) to find it in the future. The Old Testament is full of monuments where God constantly told them to make landmarks, take memorial objects and observe feasts and festivals to pass down to their children and grandchildren. He taught them to look back to these events, but also to create new ones for the future. My third observation was similar to the first. Jesus was not interested in convincing anyone of anything. He was after those who had clean motives and a heart for truth. His priority was his disciples but he dealt with everyone else based upon their motives. He knew the motives of those asking questions with a motive to discredit, and he knew the motives of those with a true desire to learn. He answered people according to their motive and not necessarily their words. I wrote a little bit about motives yesterday and I feel like God is not done talking to me about this. He isn’t looking for textbook perfection or behavior modification. He is looking for a heart that has pure motives. When we are working out the issues of our heart in private honesty with God, the behaviors will follow for all to see. We all stumble in our mistakes as we work this out, but the point is and has always been about what is going on in our hearts. We can easily fake it with people, but we can’t fake it with God. He sees everything in our hearts and that’s what he’s after.

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