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John’s gospel Post 14: Recruiting

September 7, 2013

“This is he, God’s chosen one. Who’s come to save us from all our oppressors” – Genesis – One for the vine (from the album “Wind & Wuthering”).

John 1: 43 – 51

So it seems we now have Jesus, Andrew, Someone else, and Peter. A select group. These people had done the following. Now Jesus takes the initiative in growing the group. It’s time to recruit.

But Jesus did not speak to the local employment agencies, stick an ad in the post office window or put 3 lines in the local paper. His approach was unconventional – but direct.

He left the locality in fact and found Philip. Philip who? Why Philip? Was Philip headhunted? We don’t know the background again.

But if Jesus was to the point before (“What do you want?”) he doesn’t waste his words here either. “Follow me”. It seems Jesus is not someone who uses words for the sake of it. How suspicious would you be if a complete stranger came up to you and just said “follow me”? My guess is you’d walk the other way. Had Philip and Jesus ever met? Did Philip know who he was? Again he didn’t know.

Or was there just something about this man? Something that said to Philip that this was the real thing?

Well actually Philip didn’t follow. Not straight away anyway. He did more than that. He did some more recruiting! Brother Nathanael. Had Philip heard of Jesus? Had he and Jesus chatted? Again we don’t know but something had convinced Philip to make the extraordinary statement “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the law and about whom the prophets wrote”. Philip too had been waiting for a promised rescuer to come and he couldn’t keep it to himself. “Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph”. He’s the one.

It’s all going well. So it’s about time we had some cynicism about this. Finally we get it from Nathanael. “A rescuer from Nazareth? I don’t think so. Not from that dead end place.”

But can we find great things in unexpected places when God is at work?

Nathanael responded to Philip’s “come and see”.

Jesus recognised Nathanael as a straightforward guy. But what finally got through to Nathanael was that this man had some sort of miraculous vision. Jesus knew Nathanael even though they had not met. He had seen him even though he could not. Nathanael’s mind is blown and the big claims come tumbling out again!

“Rabbi, you are the Son of God. The king of Israel”. Jesus blows away cynicism. The creator of everything knows his creatures. He made them so he knows how they tick.

Jesus said “You believe because of one miraculous insight but believe me, you hang around and you are going to see some INCREDIBLE things. Heaven. Angels”.

Fasten your seat belts and get ready for the white knuckle ride of your life!!

 

 

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