Today’s Reading: Mark 6:30-56
Social experiment meets entertainment: Millions who were glued to their television sets in the USA to watch the final episode of the Fox reality show, “Joe Millionaire”? The premise of the show was that they would take an ordinary guy making a working man’s salary, clean him up, put him up in a castle in France and then tell a number of ladies that he was heir to a fortune and whoever he picks will be his girl. The test would be that when the last girl is chosen, the truth would be told that he was not really a millionaire and we would see if she loved him for who he was or for his money. The conclusion of that show, the woman did choose to stay with Joe millionaire, even though he was really only Joe hourly wage earner. For this choice, the show gave both the girl and the guy a million dollars to split between them. It had seemed true love had blossomed but soon after the show ended, their love quickly dissolved. Now what made that show so appealing to many is that they knew that those women could have cared less if it was Joe, Tom, Dick or Harry…as long as millionaire was his last name, and they wanted to see their response when they found out who he truly was.
The bible makes it clear that Jesus knows the hearts of all men. That means that He not only knows what you do, but He also knows why you do it. He knows what the hidden motive of your actions, and whether they are pure or impure, and Jesus knew why these people had followed Him. In John’s gospel (John 6:25-26), we find the same account that we read today, but with some added details. Jesus says, “You are not following Me because you saw a miracle that pointed you to the fact that I am the promised Messiah, God in the flesh. No, you are following Me because I gave you a free lunch and now you want breakfast.” You see they did the right thing by following Jesus, but they did it for the wrong reason. And why you do something is just as important as what you do.
Let me ask you a harsh question. If you were to lose your job, your family, and your health; would that change your relationship with God? Are you following him because of who he is or because of what he can give you? When you follow Christ for any reason other than who He is, you will be disappointed and you will say, “It didn’t work. Let me try something else.” Now, don’t get me wrong. God does heal, He does perform miracles, He does do all these things, but these are not why you become a Christian. You became a Christian because you were convinced that Jesus is the Christ, the promised Messiah. You follow because of who He is. And that is what true faith is. It’s when you follow God not for the blessings that come with it, but from the blessing of who He is.