John 6:26-27 - Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on Him God the Father has set His seal."
A few years ago, a woman invested her life savings in a promising financial scheme sold to her by a swindler. With her investment gone and her dreams shattered, she then sought some professional third-part advice on the matter. "Why on earth didn't you come to us first?" the representative asked. "Didn't you know that we're here for just these circumstances?" "Yes," said the lady, sadly. "I didn't come because I was afraid you would probably tell me not to give them my money."
We all feel sorry for her loss. Yet she provides us with a good example of how humanity operates in its dealings with the Lord. Most people know that God is out there. They have a general idea that the Lord has some good advice about how they should live their lives. Maybe they even think He knows how they can be saved. In spite of such knowledge, however, they still want to do things their way.
This was the sin of our original ancestors in the Garden of Eden. The Lord had given them instructions, but they wanted to do things their way. "We know better" is what they told themselves, and they—and us—have paid the price ever since. After Jesus fed thousands with a few loaves and fishes, the disciples were impressed. But they followed Him as a provider of earthly wants, rather than spiritual necessities. Jesus said very clearly, "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you" (Matthew 6:33).
But people still think they know better. They want to do things their way, creating a god in their own image. The Bible tells us—and a look at human nature quickly shows us—that the sin of knowing better than God has been repeated again and again. Some believe that if you say a prayer a certain way God will be compelled to give you wealth and riches, health and rewards beyond your wildest imagination. If getting "the goods" of life is your motivation when you go to Jesus, please think again. He who left heaven's high throne to become one of us, to redeem us, knows what is best for us. Listen to Him. Believe in Him. He has the answers you need for this world and the next.
WE PRAY: Heavenly Father, keep us from the folly of trying to do things our way. Lead us to trust in Jesus in all that we do. In His Name. Amen.
From "Looking for Jesus," a sermon excerpt from Rev. Dr. Kenneth Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
1. How do you stay on guard against crooked people?
2. How does God provide us with food that lasts forever?
3. Why is possessing wealth something that might hinder our reliance on God?
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