The earliest Christians followed a Jewish tradition of pausing to pray, preferably together, first thing in the morning, about mid morning, at noon, about mid afternoon, and in the evening. “Just a Note” posts are brief observations made from Scripture readings not related to a lectionary. If I have one to post, it normally appears about 9:00 in the morning, at “the hour of prayer.”
John 7:2-9 depicts Jesus’ apparent disinterest in going to the Feast of Tabernacles, where his brothers think he should show himself publicly. Jesus’ brothers view the situation very much the same way most of us would. If Jesus wishes to gain a greater following he needs to promote himself. He needs to show himself at the feast where many people will be gathered. He needs to do some more miracles to make it clear that he is the miracle worker. Then people will follow him and he can gain the kind of power and influence he must want.
Jesus’ attitude is not like ours. He is quite comfortable in the knowledge that he is God the Son. He is not eager to gather more followers so as to be made king, to become rich, to become famous. In today’s terminology, he has no interest in seeing how many “likes” he can get on Facebook. He doesn’t care if people retweet him. Jesus’ work is different from the work we are so eager to have. In verse eight he says his time is not fulfilled. The time will come when he will draw all people to himself. The time will come when he will come to judge the world. The time will come when every eye will see him and every tongue will confess him. Yet the feast at hand in John’s Gospel is not that time.
Meanwhile, as we gather with family and friends, as we engage in a wide variety of social situations, what do we see Jesus doing? He is certainly working by his grace and mercy. Yet though he has shown himself to be victorious even over death itself, he often works quietly. May we see the reputation he has in our community. May we be used by God to show his mercy and grace.
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