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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Overlooked Treasure

Now there were certain Greeks among those who came up to worship at the feast ... saying, "Sir, we wish to see Jesus."
~ John 12:20-21 (NKJV)

This incident, described only in the Gospel of John, is a largely overlooked treasure. I've never heard it mentioned in a children's Bible story or lesson, in a sermon, or in discussion. Perhaps, because most Christians are Gentile rather than Jewish, we think it unremarkable that non-Jews would be interested in Jesus. Indeed, Jesus' response seems to diminish their request.

But Jesus answered them, saying, "The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified."
~ John 12:23 (NKJV)

As Jesus says more to His disciples (verses 24-26), they surely experienced another familiar "we have no idea what He's talking about" moment. What happened next was decidedly uncommon, as Jesus turns and speaks directly to God.

"Father, glorify Your name." Then a voice came from heaven, saying, "I have both glorified it and will glorify it again."
~ John 12:28 (NKJV)

Is the voice of God heard so often that it seems uneventful?

Therefore the people who stood by and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, "An angel has spoken to Him."
~ John 12:29 (NKJV)

When we do hear from God, do we try to explain it away? When we encounter seemingly random passages of Scripture, do we pass on by to something easier to apprehend?

"Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out. And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself."
~ John 12:31-32 (NKJV)

The Greeks didn't pass on by, and they received far more than they hoped for. They asked to glimpse the Man greeted by shouts of "Hosanna!" and "King of Israel!" They were given the treat of hearing the voice of God. They were informed that Jesus' hour meant changes for the whole world. And they received the good news that Jesus intended to include "all peoples" in His kingdom.

He will likewise give us more than we request if we will but ask, seek, knock.

Father, You are so very good to allow us to hear Your voice, whether audibly, in the whispers of Your Spirit, or through Your precious Word. Thank You for opening to us the treasures You have hidden in Scripture. Thank You for making us partakers in Your kingdom.

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Copyright 2012, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.

10 comments:

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    1. Good to see you, Rusty. :D backatcha! :D :D

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  2. I am involved in a Bible study that leads you to ask for God's wisdom and understanding as you study. Always a good way to start.

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    1. Patty, I wish I always remembered to ask the Holy Spirit to open the Scripture to me before I start reading. I'm often halfway (or all the way) through a passage before it hits me that I'm just ingesting words without really chewing on God's Word. When I stop to pray for His illumination, He's never failed to bless me. I praise God that His Word is alive and powerful and ALWAYS able to give me His life!

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  3. well you got me chewing/thinking again. been thinking about this business of God speaking all afternoon. your questions were/are a bit challenging. but what i liked was that "instant response" to Jesus's words of "Father glorify your name." that was/is a wonderful prayer and what a way to get an answer.

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  4. Bud, I'm not sure why your comment doesn't show up here but was forwarded to me anyway. I'm grateful to know that you're thinking on God speaking. I hope that means you're listening. I ask Him to bless you with a fresh Word as you listen for it, ready to heed. :D

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  5. Just beautiful Anne, and you are right, I don't ever remember hearing this story in Sunday School, but how important when God speaks!! Lori

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    1. Thank you, Lori. I'm working on listening to Him better. I have so far to go. I love Him for His patience with me. May He speak to you today the Word you most need from Him. ♥

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