It's good, it's all good scripture today.
But this is absolutely terrifying:
23 Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many people saw the miraculous signs he was doing and believed in his name.[c] 24 But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. 25 He did not need man’s testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.This was from the end of John 2. I've learned that when a passage of scripture jumps out at me, I'd better take a closer look.
This passage is right after the water into wine miracle and the cleansing of the temple. Jesus starts to get big, he has made his presence known. Word about him starts to get around. More and more people are following him around, either so they can be healed, or maybe just because they are rubberneckers like the best of us. Jesus is cool! He does neat things! Everyone loves a great show and I'm sure just hanging around Jesus, especially at the beginning of his ministry, they saw a lot of really cool things. And Jesus was good at this. He was in Jerusalem at Passover, a huge holiday for the Jews. I'm sure Jerusalem was busting at the seams. If ever anyone wanted to be well known it behooved them to do it at Passover in Jerusalem.
Jesus was getting his name out and it was going around fast.
Many people believed.
Or did they.
At first this portion confused me. A testimony of man? What the? Then I got it.
Even though a ton of people were following Christ, professing belief in his name to his face, he still didn't trust them because he saw their hearts. Cool things draw large crowds. They were there to be near the glory. They were there to catch some of the stuff that fell off of Christ. They were there for the fun. Now I'm sure not all were this way, but as the passage says, he would not entrust himself to them.
And where this is terrifying to me is, he knows me. He doesn't need me to tell him about myself. Because he knows it already. Eeeeekkkkk!! Please tell me this is terrifying to you too! There are things in me, thoughts I've had, things I've done, that I thought no one saw or knew, that I keep hidden. Knowledge of these things I might let seep out a bit at a time in measured quantities to select few. But it's my choice who knows. At least until I read this scripture. He already knows all that stuff!
And my soul cries out as Isaiah's did "Woe is me, for I am undone!" I finally understand the weight of Isaiah's wail. To be seen for what I am, all that I am, by the eyes of Holy God is mortifying. I am undone. There is nothing more to say, or do. Since the Lord knows all there is no arguing, or bartering, or discussion. That's it, I'm done, kaput. There is nothing more I can do or say to change his view of me, to make myself be better. No amount of makeup is going to cover up this zit. It's out there for all to see.
Yet, the Lord reminds me of this:
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8What a demonstration it is! To be seen for what I am and while I was still in that He died for me. What love! What love.
1 John 3:1 exemplifies this too,
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!
I love the word lavish. When I hear it, or read it, I think of profuse, overflowing, bubbling up, being drenched, soaking wet in God's love. If God's love is so over the top as scripture says it is, why don't we/I feel it every second of every day? With something this abundant we should never be able to get away from it.
The shame of our decrepit, repulsive souls makes his light even brighter, his love even more intense, his passion for us so much more deeper. We truly do not deserve the gift of his son, his love, his grace and his mercy. Yet he continues to give. Scripture says his mercies are new every morning and they fail not! May we know, truly know the power of his love, daily.
I pray this prayer from Ephesians 3 for you and for myself,
16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Tomorrow's passage: 2 Samuel 10-12 - John 3:1-15