I have a very good friend who is quick to teasingly say, “Has it come to this?” when friends ask for prayer after all attempts to resolve a bad situation fail. She likes to remind us that we too often wait for a crisis before humbly asking God for help. For the man found in John 4:43-54, it truly had “come to this.”
He was a royal official with a lot of resources. But his son was very sick, “close to death,” and all of the wealth and connections that he had on this earth could not help the critical situation. So the man turned to his last hope. He heard that Jesus had arrived in Cana so he travelled about 20 miles to make his urgent plea. The man found Jesus and begged Him to come with him and heal his son.
Yes, Jesus does miracles. His miracles are acts of compassion but they are intended to reveal more of His character to us…qualities of His nature that prompt the release of His power. That’s why it’s so important that we stop and ask ourselves a question when we read (or personally witness) a miracle. What can we learn about Jesus?
There is something supernatural that occurs when we recognize Jesus and His character. We begin to see ourselves more clearly. And I am certain that those who see themselves in light of who Jesus is will desire change and growth. Yes, that’s a challenge! From us, it requires a teachable spirit. It begins when one asks, “Could He be…?” and then receives His gift of revelation as truth.
Jesus told the man, “You may go. Your son will live.” Jesus gave the man a precious gift – His word. His promise.
If we want to see faith on display, we need look no further than this man. He took Jesus at His word and departed with confidence that Jesus’ promise was as good as done. He trusted Jesus. The man began his long journey home without a scrap of tangible evidence but He believed Jesus’ word was truth. What a beautiful picture of faith.
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1
I’ve thought a lot about why Jesus didn’t accompany the man to the son’s bedside. Scripture doesn’t answer my question.
It could be that Jesus had another divine appointment in Cana.
It could be that the healing was a matter of urgency. Perhaps the boy was so near breathing his last breath that healing had to take place immediately.
It could be that Jesus didn’t want the crowd to follow Him, turning the tenderness of His miracle into a “spectacular sideshow.”
It could be that Jesus wanted the man to have quiet time to wrestle with his belief in Jesus. I wonder if the man battled doubts as he made the long journey home.
It could be that Jesus wanted us to see that He doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we plan.
It could be that Jesus wants us to discover His power, sovereignty and faithfulness.
While the man was on his way home, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “the fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.”
Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and all his household believed.
Jesus’ miracles are intended to bring us to this point. Belief.
Jesus cares. He saves. He’s faithful to keep all of His promises. And He’s the same yesterday as He is today.
Thoughts to ponder:
How often do I wait until “it has come to this” before I ask God to step in and take control?
Am I willing to be taught or do I secretly think I have the answers?
Do I trust Jesus’ promises in the same way that this man did?