Bible Reading Day 129

by markburlinson

Day 129 – John 1:29-51

Read online.

Good morning!
First – it’s prize award time: my beautiful bride, Jane Burlinson, was the first to spot the typo in the references for Days 126 and 127 – the chapter we read was Luke 24 (Luke 25 does not exist!). So the award for paying close attention goes to Jane!

Second – no-one has yet claimed the prize for noticing that yesterday we accidentally skipped a day – Wednesday was not Day 129 but Day 128, so the link to read online was also wrong, and took you to today’s reading.  The comments and observations were for the correct passage though!

My apologies for these errors; they have been corrected on the blog and I will seek to finish the daily email earlier in the evening to avoid such mistakes in future!

With all the apologies and congratulations completed, let’s return to John’s Gospel.

Our reading today is the second half of Chapter 1 where there is a clear contrast between the two cousins: John is determined that Jesus will increase while he decreases. That is a rare quality in a human being – and demonstrates the influence of the Spirit of God in John’s life.

Meanwhile John testifies to the event that the three synoptic gospels record directly – the moment at Jesus’ baptism where the Holy Spirit descends in the form of a dove, and rests on Him. John declares “He is the Chosen One of God” – in other words, the Messiah.

Next, Jesus begins to call His first disciples, starting with two of John the Baptist’s disciples (one of whom is named as  Andrew and the other is widely accepted to be John, the author of this gospel). As they follow Jesus, He asks them “What do you want?” and their reply “Where are you staying” is a form of request to become a disciple. This is similar to someone today asking to join a small group by saying “where do you meet?”

From the outset, it was natural for the disciples to invite others to join them. Andrew fetches his brother Simon (named Peter by Jesus). And the next day, as the small band of disciples sets out with Jesus toward Galilee, Philip is invited to join and immediately goes to look for Nathanael. Nathanael is skeptical (probably because Judea and Galilee had seen a multitude of false messiahs over the years of Roman occupation as hardships increased). 

Interestingly, Jesus declares Nathanael to be full of integrity when they are introduced soon after. So skepticism does not have to be a barrier to pleasing God! By recording this supernatural insight, John is underscoring the spiritual authority and credentials of Jesus. This gospel is perhaps the most supernatural of the four.

Nathanael is taken aback by such insight, and declares Jesus to be the Son of God and the King of Israel! But Jesus tells him to expect much more than just supernatural knowledge on this journey with the Son of Man, the stairway to heaven. 

What about you? If you are moving steadily closer to God through Jesus, how does God want to surprise you with more than you expect today? And who can you invite to join you on the journey?
Have a great day!

Mark.
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