Jesus’ words from our reading yesterday are causing quite a stir! The crowd and even to officers who came to arrest Jesus are considering His words. But some of them have a few doubts remaining.
Two of the biggest issues raised are Jesus’ lineage (again) and His home town. The Jews don’t go around with “name tags” on their robes saying what their family line is or where they come from, but some of their mannerisms are dead giveaways. There also seems to be differences in speech patterns and dialects from region to region. That speech pattern was distinguishable in several stories throughout the gospels.
It was obvious to those around that Jesus was from the region of Galilee. The people were also familiar with Jesus’ earthly family. I don’t know why they weren’t aware of Jesus’ lineage ties to David. Did people talk about their family background or was it just assumed by the area you were from?
God went to great pains to ensure we knew Jesus’ lineage and how He alone fit that prophecy but it also seems like God also wanted some mystery surrounding Jesus during His time on earth. These people had no idea that He was actually a descendant of King David. They also had no idea that He had been born in Bethlehem. If they would have known would more have believed? Would Jesus have told them if they had asked? Would they have still crucified Him?
His origin was a stumbling block to many of those listening in. How did His disciples get past this point? Did it matter to them? Did Jesus, or Mary, tell Jesus’ disciples of His birth history? John pointed Him out to His first disciples. Did he tell them Jesus’ background?
Regardless of what the people knew of Jesus’ beginnings and lineage, they saw His works. That alone should have been enough for them. For many it was. Many believed in Him there in the temple that day.
My favorite part of our reading today is when the officers come back emptyhanded to the Pharisees. I can just see the looks on the Pharisees’ faces. “What do you mean you didn’t arrest Him!”
“But everything He said makes sense. He also seems to speak with authority.”
“His words are for the ignorant and simple minded. Don’t let Him fool you too. He needs to be stopped!!”
“Why? What has He done? Could He be the one after all?”
“Don’t be ridiculous! He’s from Galilee and NO prophet comes out of Galilee!!”
I also love how Nicodemus tries to stand up for Jesus, as much as he can without being totally found out. “Does our law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?” (verse 51). I bet he wasn’t included in Jesus’ trial in Caiaphas’ courtyard. I wonder how many more silent witnesses for Jesus in the Sanhedrin. I wonder what became of Nicodemus after Jesus’ death and resurrection.
Father God, You kept EVERYTHING perfect for Your plan. You “blinded” some eyes and opened others. No man can know what one little change might have done to the whole process, but You did and do! Thank you for working it all out in advance. I wish the end result today was different for the nation of Israel. I feel for them as they continue to wait for “their Messiah.” They missed the truth completely because they were hung up on details and didn’t want to know the truth. I’m SO glad some of them realized the truth though. Please let me focus on the whole and not try to pick everything apart in my own life and walk too. I KNOW the truth but sometimes wonder about little details too. THANK YOU for not letting it affect my faith in You!