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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Today’s Scripture Reading | John 1:43–51

The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael asked him, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.” (NRSV)

“Come and see,” Andrew replies to Nathanael’s skepticism. He didn’t recite a grand theological interpretation of Jesus Christ. He didn’t tell Nathanael that he should or must follow Jesus. He didn’t even tell Nathanael what might happen to him if he joined with Jesus and the disciples. Andrew simply said, “Come and see.” He invites.

The Christian life is one of invitation—or, rather, evangelism. The good news of Jesus Christ is too good not to share. But to be fair, it’s a pretty difficult and uncomfortable task. It’s an awkward and curious commission, and frankly, the gospel is hard to believe. Where do you start? Born of a virgin? Resurrection? Salvation? No. Take a hint from Andrew. Tell them to come and see.

Tell them to come and see the beauty of the Word made alive in music, sermon, sacrament, through our worship.

Tell them to come and see the throngs of children running through the Gratz Center on Sunday mornings on their way to Sunday School, where they meet the God that gives them life, breath, and being.

Tell them to come and see the volunteers packing the kitchen on Sunday evenings and throughout the week to prepare meals and nourishment for those who need it most.

Tell them to come and see what new thing God is doing with God’s people in this place.

Tell them to come and see what this wild and wondrous Christian life is all about. Because if you do, if you reach out and invite, you too might be changed.

Eternal God, who calls your church to witness, help me to proclaim your good news, that all who hear it may come and see your unfolding truth and, that by doing so, may come to know your love, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Written by Shawn Fiedler, Worship and Adult Education Coordinator

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