by Keith Hassell | November 1, 2010
John 6:64-65 “’But there are some of you who do not believe.’ For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray Him. From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.”
This is a sad and sobering Scripture. Great multitudes followed Jesus--for a while--but not everyone who followed Him truly believed. In the same way, not all who gather in the church are truly part of His kingdom. Not all who say, “Lord, Lord!” will enter the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 7:21). People gather around Christ for many reasons, but not all of these reasons lead to eternal life. Some gather around Him because of His love and compassion. Some gather around Him because of the miracles. Some gather around Him because of the peace and tranquility they feel in His presence. Some gather around Him because of His popularity. Some gather around Him because He speaks with authority. Some gather around Him simply because they are disillusioned with the current religious establishment. Others may gather around Him with political motives. But not all who follow Him believe. Not all willing to “eat His flesh and drink His blood” which is covenant language for total commitment. Not all are willing to receive Him as who He truly is and make Him their one and only Source of eternal life. They are okay with Jesus being a part of their life equation, but they are unwilling to allow Him to be the totality of their life equation. As a result, they cannot accept the demands of His Lordship over their lives and thus can walk away. 1 John 2:19 reveals the reasons: “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us, but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.” The twelve disciples had the same opportunity to walk away. When Jesus asked if they too desired to leave, Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You ALONE have the words of eternal life.” For them, Jesus was not an option of convenience and personal preference. Rather, He was the ONLY true and eternal option. The twelve proved to be genuine believers as the others walked away. Where do you stand today--with the crowd or with the twelve?