advent lettering

O Come All Ye Faithful


Today's Reading

John 1:35-42

Something was different this time, and Andrew knew it.

He had visited the wilderness before after hearing about an eccentric preacher calling people to repent, and when he did, he discovered a message he hadn’t heard before, a message that took him down a new path. We don’t know how long Andrew would have called himself a disciple of John, but he identified himself as such…until this new voice came along.

The day before, John had been preaching as normal when Jesus approached to be baptized, a dove appeared, and a voice came out from heaven. Amazing…and Andrew probably missed it. The next day, John sees Jesus again and tells the crowd that Jesus was the lamb of God, and Andrew wasn’t about to miss out again. So he left his mentor and followed his Master.

Think about this shift that happened in his life. Andrew had already left his daily routine to follow some guy in sheepskins eating honey and locust. I am sure his family expressed some concern with this move. Maybe they were afraid he was joining a cult, or perhaps they knew Andrew was an especially sensitive spiritual person. Regardless, Andrew left his life to join up with John, and then abruptly he leaves John to follow a random man from Nazareth. Why?

Something was different this time, and Andrew knew it.

So what was different? I think that we get the key in what Andrew did next. He went to his brother Simon, whom Jesus renames Peter. 

So far in the story, we see John refer to Jesus as the Lamb of God. We hear the voice from heaven call Jesus His Son. And we see others refer to him as Rabbi. But what is the first thing Andrew says to his brother about Jesus?

“We have found the Messiah.” Can you imagine getting that text message from your brother?

Andrew saw Jesus for who He was, before he was ever told. Andrew knew this man wasn’t just a good teacher or a great leader, he was the Messiah—the anointed one, the promised savior of Israel, the servant who would be king. Jesus was here!

Not much is written about what Simon Peter and Andrew spoke about along the road as Andrew brought Peter to Jesus, but I doubt that they spoke about family matters or the fishing business. Andrew was focused and determined. You can almost see in his eyes the same spark that was in the eyes of the shepherds some 30 years prior. You can hear in his heart a melody line ringing “O, Come let us adore him.” You know that he was ready to leave everything for this man. And he did.

What about Peter? Don’t you love how Peter immediately meets Jesus in this scene, and Jesus turns his life upside down? Jesus renames him, and Peter accepts. The name you were presented with in the temple, it’s changed now. Boating business, doesn’t matter. Family back home, they will be okay. Everything is different. 

In Andrew and Peter, we catch a glimpse of ordinary men who knew life was more than just their business. Andrew was a seeker, and Peter was a doer, but both yearned for salvation. And when they met Jesus, they dropped everything to obtain it.

Jesus spoke of the parable of a hidden pearl in a field, and how when a man discovered the treasure, he gave everything he had to obtain the land and gain the treasure (Matthew 13:44-46). Andrew and Peter could identify with this story.

For the outside world, they probably were considered crazy for throwing away their lives and fortunes to follow Jesus, but they knew, even if they couldn’t fully explain, that the treasure of following Jesus was worth more than anything they possessed or could ever earn.

In preparing for Christmas, where is your heart? It isn’t enough to just listen with the crowd. Remember, hundreds of people came daily to listen to John preach. Andrew wasn’t special in that sense. And like those people, hundreds read their Bibles, attend services, and do lip service to love God. But when the Messiah shows up, they stay behind.

Don’t stay behind. Ask God to make your heart like the hearts of Andrew and Peter, who joyfully left everything to follow the Messiah. Run with them to meet and adore Christ the Lord.

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