What Are You Looking For?

Photo by Саша Лазарев: https://www.pexels.com/photo/toddler-wearing-floral-dress-holding-doll-3578326/

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

The Bible talks a lot about the glory of God. John saw the glory of God. The glory of God is the love of God. God loves us so much, that the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us. God became Man – Perfect Man – so He could save us from our sins.

Kids Illustration: You might wonder what “sin” is. Sin is something that our God says NOT to do. Sin is an act that shows you don’t love God and don’t love others. Blow up a red balloon & draw a smiley face on it. Jesus came to this earth to teach us that sin is bad, and that God doesn’t want us to sin because it is bad. Sin hurts us. It pushes us away from God. Sin hurts our families. Pull a pin from the Cross, & pop a balloon. Sin is like this pin. It’s never good. But Jesus came to show us what God thinks about sin, and about us.

When Did We First See “The Word Become Flesh?”

When John the Baptist – the Herald of Jesus (we studied him last week) first announced Jesus to the world, what did he say and where did he say it? Read with me:

John 1:28-29 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. 29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

Define Bethabara: The area called Bethabara” (means “Place of the Crossing”) where John is baptizing is today known as Al-Maghtas. When the second generation of Israel crossed the Jordan, it is believed they crossed at this place into the Promised Land led by Joshua (Joshua 3:14-17). Later the Prophet Elijah accompanied by his disciple Elisha would cross the Jordan at this place after Elijah commands it to part. After he crosses the Jordan with Elisha, God takes Elijah up into Heaven by a chariot of fire and a whirlwind. When Elisha heads back home he commands the water to part (2 Kings 2:8-14) just as Elijah did, and began to preach God’s Kingdom. John is baptizing in this same Bethabara when Jesus comes up. John declares:

Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world

Word Study: The glory of the Lord is that God became flesh to take away the sin of the world. The words take away” (Greek airō) means “to lift or bear up, to raise off of”. Sin is seen as a terrible burden that crushes the people it afflicts. The Word of God became flesh and showed us His glory. The Word of God became the Lamb of God, to pay for and lift up our sins. But Jesus didn’t just come to pay for our sins.

Jesus came to pay for our sins and to walk with us in life!

Jesus came to see John the Baptist baptizing one day, and John said “Behold, the Lamb of God”. John introduced Jesus. Well, Jesus walked away and no one followed Him! Even though John said:

John 1:34 I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

Jesus is not only the Word become flesh, and God become Man. He is the Son of God, and the Lamb of God. As Jesus walks away you would expect someone to follow Him – but none do! They stay with John. A lot of times I tell people about Jesus, and Jesus comes into our midst, but no one sees Him nor accepts His invitation. But Jesus will come back (praise God). This is another part of Jesus’ glory.

The glory of Jesus is that He is persistent. He keeps on calling us, and keeps on bidding us to follow Him!

John 1:35-36 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; 36 And looking upon Jesus as He walked, he {John} saith, Behold the Lamb of God!

The phrase the next day after shows us that Jesus came back. No one followed Him the first time John introduced Him, so Jesus comes back again. Two of John’s disciples respond to Jesus:

John 1:37 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.

These two disciples were not abandoning John the Baptist. They were doing what John wanted them to do – what any Christian wants you to do. We want you to follow Jesus. We want you to be saved. The only way you can be saved is to Follow the Lamb of God. Jesus said:

Luke 9:23-25 (ESV) If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25 For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?

Later on in this Gospel Jesus will tell us:

John 14:6 (ESV) I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Several years ago Kyle Idleman wrote a book called not a fan. I thought it was a pretty good book. He wrote this:

So in case someone left it out or forgot to mention it when they explained what it meant to be a Christian, let me be clear: There is no forgiveness without repentance. There is no salvation without surrender. There is no life without death. There is no believing without committing.”

Jesus calls us to follow Him. This is what John the Baptist wanted his hearers to understand. This is what Jesus wants us to understand. When you follow Jesus, you are blessed. When these two followed Jesus, what did He do?

John 1:38 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye?

As they follow Jesus He asks them, What are you looking for? In “The Gospel of John – A Commentary” by Frederick Dale Bruner he notes that these are the first words Jesus utters in the Gospel of John. Jesus asks, “What are YOU looking for?” The entire Gospel of John asks this question. What are YOU looking for in following Jesus?

Some people are looking for temporary blessing. That’s all they want. They are encountering sickness in their life, and want Jesus to take away that sickness. There’s lots of stories like this in the Bible. There was the story of Blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus. We are told in …

Mark 10:46-48 (NIV) {Jesus} came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (which means “son of Timaeus”), was sitting by the roadside begging. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!

Blind Bartimaeus followed Jesus, crying out for mercy. Jesus asked Bartimaeus, What do YOU want Me to do for YOU? Bartimaeus told Jesus, “Teacher, I want to see”. And Jesus let him see – and Bartimaeus “followed Jesus along the road” (Mark 10:52). But he just followed Jesus a little way down the road. He got what he wanted, his eye sight. But Bartimaeus is lost to us after this. Will he be in Heaven? I don’t know.

There were some two other blind men that called out to Jesus, Have mercy on us, O Lord” (Matthew 20:31). Jesus asked them, What do YOU want Me to do for YOU?, to which they replied, Lord, open our eyes. The Bible says:

Matthew 20:34 (NKJV) So Jesus had compassion and touched their eyes. And immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed Him.

Jesus healed their eyes, and they followed Him. Will they be in Heaven? I don’t know.

But I think if you follow Jesus, you’re pretty sure
you’re going to end up where He is!

A few chapters later in John we’ll read about a pitiful, crippled man who lays every day by a Pool called Bethesda. Jesus came up to him one day and asked, Do you want to be made well?” (John 5:6). Though the man did not give Jesus a strictly “yes” or “no” answer, Jesus heard him out – then healed him. The man picked up his bed and walked – but he did not follow Jesus. Later Jesus came back to that man and said,

John 5:14-15 … “you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.” 15 The man departed and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.

The man did not follow Jesus. He got what he wanted from Jesus, and told the Pharisees that Jesus healed him. Will he be in Heaven? I don’t know. But I’ll tell you, the best place to be is following Jesus.

Two Disciples Get It Right

John 1:38-39 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou? 39 He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour.

Jesus asks the two that follow Him (only TWO?), What are YOU looking for? Some follow Jesus for healing or good health. Some follow Jesus for a full belly. Some follow Jesus for a nice home, or money, or a good car. These two disciples of John got it right. Jesus asks them “What are YOU looking for?” and they say, where dwellest thou?. They want to see where Jesus lives. That’s the best place to be.

Throughout the Gospel of John Jesus describes Himself as “I AM”. He says,

I AM The Bread of Life (John 6:35).
It is Jesus Who supplies us with life.
I AM The Light of the World (John 8:12).
Jesus gives us light to see right.
I AM The Door of the sheep (John 10:7).
You cannot enter Heaven without Jesus.
I AM The Good Shepherd (John 10:14).
Jesus protects His sheep, His followers.
I AM The Resurrection and the Life (John 11:25).
Jesus has destroyed death for us.
I AM The Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).
Jesus teaches us the Way of God, the Truth of God, and the Life that leads to God.
I AM The True Vine (John 15:1).
As the grape clings to the vine, the Christian clings to Jesus.

If you are saved, you follow Jesus. But you do something else. Up to this point we don’t know who the two disciples are that follow Jesus. But now we read:

John 1:40-42 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias {Hebrew word messias transliterated by the KJV. Refers to the Greek Christos or Christ, the Savior}, which is, being interpreted, the Christ. 42 And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.

Andrew went and got his brother Simon Peter and told him “We have found the MESSIAH or the Christ”. This is the Savior that God promised would come into the world in the Old Testament. Andrew brought his brother to Jesus. He just showed him Jesus. This is what we are called to do.

Closing: When Sherry and I were stationed in England for the United States Air Force we had the wonderful opportunity of riding the big red double decker buses in London. As a family (we had our three kids with us) we’d always go to the top of the bus – the upper “uncovered” floor, and enjoy a wonderful view as we rode around town. There were many times when we as a family were at a bus stop and, much to my dismay, the bus passed us by without stopping. Someone complained about this to the London Transit Authority, the organization that maintains the London City Buses. The London Transit Authority issued a public paper that stated the following: “It is impossible for us to maintain our schedule if we are always having to stop and pick up passengers”.

Obviously, the London Transit Authority forgot what its purpose is. Sadly many Christians have forgotten their purpose.

Without passengers the Transit Authority is unprofitable. Without passengers you need no buses. The business of the London Transit Authority is to take people around town in buses. The business of the Church is to lift up and glorify Jesus Christ as both Lord and Savior. We are to follow Jesus. We are to kill sin in our lives, and shine as lights, glorifying Jesus as we follow Him. We are to bring others into proximity with Jesus. If you are saved, you are to live for and with Jesus.

May God touch your hearts with this devotional. Amen and amen.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
This entry was posted in John, Sermons Preached and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.