He had just fed over 4000 people miraculously with seven loaves of bread and just a few fish. What an amazing miracle! Then here come the Pharisees saying, “Show us a sign.” Seriously, did you not just hear that Jesus just fed over 4000 people with just seven loaves of bread and a few fish? Where have you been Pharisees. Nevertheless, the come to Jesus and they ask Him for a sign.
He performed a miracle for the 4000 because he had compassion on them. The Pharisees were not coming into His presence with humility, but pride. Jesus was not compelled to perform any kind of miracle.
The Lord loves to do miracles for His children who love Him, but He does not do miracles to prove Himself. When they asked for a sign, he reminded them that when they look at the sky, they can tell what the weather is going to be like. Jesus was telling them that they were able to see what the weather was going to be based on what they could already see meaning that He did not have to do any miraculous sign to prove that He was God. Like the sky, the proof of His deity was in plain sight.
Sometimes, we just want to see the big miracles. We want to see God do for us what is impossible. And our faithfulness to the Lord seems to hang on His doing the miracle we are asking. We may not say it out loud, but our spiritual mood changes when God doesn’t perform the signs that we want. This is why Jesus called the Pharisees wicked and adulterous. When our faithfulness and worship to the Lord changes based on whether or not He has done what we think He should do, He likens it unto an unfaithful spouse who is not happy with how things are at home so they look elsewhere.
I want to take today and remind you that He is God whether He performs miracles or not. If He heals the cancer or doesn’t, He is still God. Whether you get the job or you don’t, He is still God. Whether your marriage gets better or ends in divorce, He is still God. The proof that He is God has nothing to do with the signs He may or may not perform. Jesus’ point was that the proof of who He was as plain as the clouds in the sky.
The Pharisees had all the writings of the Old Testament filled with prophecies proving Jesus was the Christ. The prophet Malachi had written that there would be a prophet who would come before Jesus preparing the way. John the Baptist claimed to be this man. He was certainly a prophet. All the people saw him as such. But when asked if he was the Messiah, he claimed that he was the one who was to prepare the way. Then when Jesus arrived at the river, John said in the hearing of all the crowd, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” Everyone heard this. Then all the miracles and the teachings. Jesus, at one point, even stood in the Temple, reading Isaiah 61 which spoke of one coming with the power of the Holy Spirit, told the people that today, this passage was fulfilled.
They knew from Micah, the prophet that the Messiah would be born in the town of Bethlehem and from many prophets that the Messiah would be in the line of David. And of course, Jesus was born in Bethlehem and both Mary and Joseph were descendants of King David.
Now, how many other teachers in Israel at that time were declared by John the Baptist to be the Messiah, claimed to be the fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah 61, did all kinds of miracles, was born in Bethlehem, and who had both a Mom and a Dad descended from King David? Hmmmm….let’s count how many men could check off all of these boxes….1. That’s right. There was only 1 man. There had never been a man before Jesus that fit all of these prophecies and so much more. It should have been as clear to them as it was the clouds in the sky. Even the common, non-priestly folks recognized him as the Messiah as he rode into Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey. This had been foretold by Zechariah as well. Because this was a highly-religious society where every day the stores of the Old Testament and the words of the prophet were told and re-told, everyone recognized all the signs which is why they shouted Hosanna waving palm branches meant for a king when Jesus rode into Jerusalem that day. The point is that it was plain as day that Jesus was the Messiah. No signs or miracles were necessary for the Pharisees when they asked for one.
And for us it is even more plain. We not only have the Old Testament prophecies, but more have been fulfilled since His death and resurrection. The New Testament are first hand accounts of those men who walked this earth with Him and those they mentored and trained. Everything in the Bible points to one truth-Jesus is the Lord Almighty. He is God. From the very beginning, it has been made plain to us through the prophets and early disciples. Over 40 different men authored 66 different books/letters over a span of 15 centuries that do not contradict one another, but all lead to the same true-Jesus is Lord! How many other prominent religious figures that have claimed to be God have had the same number of books written about them, that so many prophecies fulfilled, who claimed to be God, documented to have died for this claim, and documented to have been seen again after His death. No other religious figure in history has anything close to this many people over this span of time pointing to them as God. Mohammed sure doesn’t. Buddha certainly doesn’t.
Listen, He is God whether He answers your prayers or not. To act differently before the Lord when He doesn’t do what you want is fickle, like a wayward wife. We must acknowledge from what has been made plain to us that Jesus is God and no matter what He does or doesn’t do, He is worthy of our worship. He is God and there is no other!
The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus and tested him by asking him to show them a sign from heaven.
2 He replied,“When evening comes, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,’ 3 and in the morning, ‘Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4 A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.” Jesus then left them and went away. (NIV 1984)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, teach me that who You are today is more than sufficient enough for me. I thank you for the times when you have overwhelmed me with blessings and miracles. But help my faith to be resolute when I am in the valleys of life. And Lord, be with all that I know struggling in the valleys to hold on to You-to You and not to your promises. -Amen
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