Scripture: John 5:30-47
Key verse: (40) “. . . and you are unwilling to come to me so that you may have life.”
Reflection: Jesus faced a lot of resistance to his teachings from the religious people of his day. In today’s passage, he defends his divine mission by emphasizing his dependence on God; the witness of John the Baptist; the fulfillment of scripture, and the testimony of Moses. In a moment of exasperation, he tells the Jewish religious authorities they were unwilling to follow him and have life. We can only imagine how angry this made them. It is easy to criticize them, but we resist, too. Why is it so difficult to follow Jesus? Perhaps, it is the way Jesus challenges how we think about the world and how we think about ourselves. He challenges customs and traditions that may be getting in the way of our being disciples. We resist the love he offers. We resist when we are afraid of the changes that might happen if we follow him. We want God to help us, but we are reticent to turn our lives over. When we follow Jesus, there will be change. But, there will also be new life – the kind of life that will give us a deep and abiding sense of peace equipping us to serve God by serving others. Where are the places of resistance in your life? What might happen if you took a chance and embraced the life Jesus offers?
Prayer: Loving God, forgive our resistance to the life you offer. Help us to let our lives rest in your hands. Remind us that you chose us long before we were aware of your presence. Cultivate trust in our hearts that we might joyful follow Jesus. Give us hearts that long to know you. May our lives be a living witness to your love today and every day. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Author: Deborah Conner
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].