GSFA Devotional: Bread for Our Journey
Lenten Devotion (5)
22 March 2023
Is that him? I want to follow the truth!
Is that me? I want to be an example of the truth!
Reading: John 1:35-42; Titus 2:1-15
Never do what Christ would never bless and go to a place where Christ is. Stay out of your company.
Agustin of Hippo
We are at John’s gospel, where Jesus is passing again before John the Baptist, and he again points out Jesus as the Lamb of God. But this time, the two disciples who were with him when they heard this from John came to follow Jesus. What John said was too severe; if he was the lamb of God, he had much to say and give to those men; after all, this expectation was millennial, and their eyes could see the fulfillment of this promise of so long and long-awaited. Jesus still interrogates them, asking, "what do they want?" They show interest by asking where Jesus was staying or where he landed. They immediately answered Jesus' call to come and see, and the text says only that they spent that day or the rest of him with Jesus.
Interesting how the lessons that come from the Bible spring to our eyes in a simple, more accurate look. Only in these few verses of the gospel can we realize how much God speaks to our hearts. Notice that when Jesus is identified with the Lamb of God, the two disciples immediately follow him. The name of this is readiness, they walked with John and learned from Him, but they had the discernment that this time had passed and that now there was another that brought the fullness of times to follow. The text tells us that one of them was Andrew, whom we know became one of the twelve disciples of Christ, and the other, there is no reference to his name, probably another who was among the twelve. However, what is important to note here is the willingness to follow Jesus as soon as they knew who He was. Even those questioned by Christ remained firmly desirous and interested in learning more about him.
The readiness to follow Jesus is necessary for anyone who wishes to walk with God. Jesus, being God himself, proclaims the way, opens the doors, and shows where we go in the direction of finding the entire presence of God. Jesus, the Lamb of God, the expected Messiah, points the way and puts himself as the Way. Notice that when they learned about who Jesus was, they wanted to spend time with Jesus, be with Him, and learn from Him. That must be our attitude. When we identified Jesus as our Savior, this is only the first step; now we need to spend more time with Him, reading the Bible, having quiet moments, and practicing prayer. This is the beginning of a new life near the one who came to give us life. What comes next is a process that involves attitude, and one of them is to announce to others what you have become aware of. Pay attention to the text that says what Andrew did, he took his brother Simon Peter, who would later be called by Jesus and who became one of the great leaders and apostles of God, an instrument of blessings in the lives of so many people and these blessings extend to this day.
The proclamation of what we have found in Christ is the noblest attitude we can initially take. The text says that the first Andrew found was his brother, and he took him to Christ. What have you made of Christ? Who have you shown Jesus to? Whom have you taken to Him? Whether with our words and attitudes or through our relationships, we who find Christ the Lamb of God must seek naturally to bring others to Him.
Therefore, the gospel teaches us that we should follow Jesus and that our lives must bring others to Him. No one who meets the Lamb of God remains as he or she is. Walter Trobish said that "God in His grace accepts us as we are, but when we come to Him, we cannot stay as we are" Simon became Peter, someone under whom much would still be placed on his shoulders and leadership, not without first an extended period of growth and maturation. With you, it will never be different, you may not be called Peter, but regardless of what your name means, the firmness of a rock may also be your life. Just believe, follow, and transpire the Grace of God, which is in Christ, then others will look at you and obey, for no one resists the sovereign grace of God.
Those days have not been easy days, that is true, but the days of these men and women who lived this reality of the early church were neither more nor less difficult. As difficult as today, or perhaps even more, what John the Baptist said, "Behold the lamb of God," is being told today and every day by different lips or instruments of God; follow him and desire more than spend a day with Him. Desire to be the target of what Paul advises Titus, learn to live in Grace and endure everything as a follower of the expected messiah, abandon the passions of this world and be faithful and persevere all the time. May Jesus stay in his heart forever.
A call to Pray:
Lord, I ask you something simple initially; when I see you pass, I never doubt that you are the Lamb of God, the expected messiah who came to me so there is salvation. I want to follow you all my life. And help me live according to Your excellent will and reflect your Grace and love and in my own life, being an example to others. Help me, Father, always put it in my heart.
The Most Revd Miguel Uchoa
Archbishop and Primate
Anglican Church in Brazil