Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Calling The First Disciples

John 1:35-51

“Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!  And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.” (John 1:35-36)

Both Matthew and Mark tell us that immediately after his baptism, Jesus went into the wilderness for forty days.  During that time John had continued preaching.  Jesus had just returned when John was questioned by the Pharisees.  The next day, John was walking with two of his disciples when he saw Jesus and pointed him out to them.  They immediately followed Jesus. 

“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?

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.   
One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.  He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ.  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. ” (John 1:38-42)

When john’s disciples joined him, Jesus asked what they were looking for and they said they wanted to know where he lived so he invited them to go with him since it was late afternoon.   One of the two was Simon Peter’s brother who went and got his brother and introduced him to the Lord. 

A short time after Andrew and Peter met the Lord, He began preaching in Capurnaim.   It was then that Jesus called Peter and Andrew to follow him according to Mark 1:16-18)  “Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.  And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.  And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him.”   A short distance away he found James and John and called them, as Mark 1:19-20 explains.   “And when he had gone a little farther thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets.  And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.” 

“The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me.  Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.

Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.  

And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?

Philip saith unto him, Come and see.

Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!

Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me?

 Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.

Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.

Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these.

And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.” (John 1:43-51)

Jesus then found Philip and asked him to follow him.   Philip recognized the Lord as the Messiah and went to tell Nathanael.  Nathanael was a dedicated follower of the Law but he had forgotten the prophecy that Jesus was to be called a Nazarene mentioned in Matthew 2:23, “And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.”   It is important to understand that there were many prophets and prophecies that were never included in the scriptures, and this is one of them.   Jesus recognized Nathanael as a dedicated follower of god and his law, and that caught Nathaniel’s attention.   When Jesus said he had seen him while he was sitting under the fig tree where Philip found him, Nathanael was convinced he was the Messiah.  Jesus said he would witness far greater and more convincing sights that that.  Though he was never listed as one of the apostles, Nathanael would follow Jesus throughout his ministry, and was with the group who went fishing after Jesus’ resurrection in John 21.

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