Have you ever had a fair-weather friend? You know, someone who is happy to be your pal until it may cost them something or it is somehow inconvenient. Then they are nowhere to be found. Jesus had and still has his share of those types of friends, as we’ll see in the passage we’ll be exploring this Sunday – John 6:60-71.
Jesus has gone off the deep end in some people’s estimation, talking about eating his flesh and drinking his blood – a clear violation of Old Testament law. Jesus was speaking figuratively…but even still, it was just too uncomfortable for many of his followers…..so they quit following.
Jesus didn’t soften what he said or chase everyone down and beg them to stay with him. Does that surprise you at all? What does it tell us about aspects of the gospel as over against our own perception and will? What elements of the gospel disturb you or rub you wrong? When Jesus says we have to lose our life to find it…or demands that we take up a cross to follow him…or insists that we forgive people who mistreat us? What about where he tells someone to sell everything and follow him? We like to think about miracles and grace and Jesus loving the outsiders….but there is all this other stuff about eating his flesh and dying to self that sometimes rubs us wrong.
So what do WE do in those instances? We may not ever admit to walking away…but do we shut out those hard claims of the gospel on our lives? Through a thousand little choices do we reclaim our lives from Jesus?
Peter’s response to Jesus is beyond wonderful to me.
“Where we gonna’ go?” What has the gospel brought to your life that you think you could replace through some other pursuit? How can we remind ourselves of what’s really important when we’re tempted to return to our old lives, piece by piece?
Peter said “we have believed and have come to know you are the Holy One of God.” What do you see as the difference between believing and coming to know? What does this tell you about the nature of following Jesus?
It should prove to be a convicting yet encouraging exploration of the Word this Sunday – hope you can be there!