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A systematic reading of the Scriptures, portioned to complement your daily time spent with God.
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John 20:19-31 "THE WAY OF SIGHT"
Day 351 – John 20
THE WAY OF SIGHT
Thomas knew that Jesus had seen right through him! He had foolishly chosen the way of sight, even though he had heard Jesus teaching them how they must cultivate their faith all the time.
The way of sight leads to demand for signs.
Jesus was right when He said that people would not come to faith unless they saw signs and wonders! Was it necessary wrong to ask for signs and wonders?
When Jesus cleansed the Temple at Jerusalem, the Jews rounded on Him and demanded,
“What sign do You show to us, since You do
Instead of repenting of their sin of violating and desecrating the Holy Temple, the Jews demanded “a sign” from Jesus to prove His right to do what He did!
Jesus then made a prophetic but cryptic statement.
“Destroy this temple, and in three days I will
raise it up.”
The Jews did not have a clue as to what Jesus said then. However, they appeared to have understood that Jesus was making a reference to His resurrection. Thus after He was crucified, and certified dead, the Jews asked for a guard to be placed at the tomb of Jesus! They feared the worst! Their worst fears were realized when news went around that Jesus had indeed risen from the dead! The way of sight did not always result in faith!
On another occasion, Jesus fed a multitude of five thousand men with two loaves and five fish. He used the occasion to ask the multitude to believe in Him as the Bread of Life.
The people then retorted and said,
“What sign will You perform then, that we may
see it and believe You? What work will You do?”
But the same group of people had said just a while ago these words,
“Then those men, when they had seen the sign
That Jesus did, said, ‘This is truly the prophet
who is to come into the world.”
The way of sight causes a person to keep asking for signs. But when a sign is given, there is no guarantee that faith would follow. The way of sight is the way of the natural man.
If the Lord does provide signs, it would be out of His grace and mercy, and not because it is a reward of faith! Jesus had to reprimand Thomas for his unbelief. The appearance of Jesus to Thomas must not be read as a commendation of his faith!
But what if the Lord did not provide the signs, would faith then be unable to grow significantly? The way of sight demands signs. But can one actually demand a sign?
The way of sight makes faith dependent upon signs and wonders! But faith was never designed to depend upon signs! John made this observation.
“But although He had done so many signs before
them, they did not believe in Him.”
THE WAY OF FAITH
There was no mistaking the meaning of what Jesus said! It was possible to believe without seeing! “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Were there people who had believed, and had continued to believe, even though they had not seen the Risen Saviour? Jesus was telling His Disciples that there were others to whom He did not make an appearance, nevertheless they continued to have a steadfast faith!
The way of faith was the preferred way! Let us take time to consider how we may cultivate our faith.
1. Focus on Jesus
Jesus appealed to His listeners to follow His reasoning (John 5):-
a) He cited the famous and powerful preacher John the Baptizer as one who believed in Him.
b) He cited His works as proof that He was indeed sent by God.
c) He cited the Scriptures as proof that He was indeed the Messiah.
d) He boldly spoke of His Father as His witness too!
If only people would focus on Jesus, His words and His deeds, their faith would deepen significantly. Faith must be centered in Christ if it is to grow well.
2. Cultivate faith responsibly
It was the responsibility of every believer to cultivate the faith given to him. The initial faith may be as small as a mustard seed. However, it is capable of growing to a great height!
Jesus emphasized to His Disciples that they must take heed how they heard God’s Word. To the Disciples was given the privilege of knowing the mysteries of the kingdom. But having said that, they must do due diligence.
“Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever
has, to him more will be given; and whoever does
not have, even what he seems to have will be taken