When People Come to Jesus for the Wrong Reasons, by Ty Tamasaka
“Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), 2 and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick. 3 Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. 4 The Jewish Passover Festival was near.” John 6:1-4 NIV
In John 5, we seen individuals coming and seeking out Jesus. In chapter 6, we see a multitude seeking Jesus.
The crowd gathered not so much because they wanted to be with Him, but because they were curious about Him. They came because they saw the signs He performed. They heard about the miracles He performed.
This still happens today. People come to Jesus for the wrong reasons. Their mentality was to manipulate the Lord for their own personal needs and private agendas. They came to Him to see what they could get from Him. They didn’t come to Jesus to seek Him for who He is, but for what He could do. They came to see:
- The signs He performed.
- His healing of the sick.
How often today to people come to Jesus to simply get what they want. There is a widespread theology called the Prosperity Gospel, which has its entire basis on gaining great crowds of people coming to Jesus to get what they want – prosperity. We remember from John 2:23-24, Jesus did not trust those who believed because of the signs. He didn’t entrust Himself to them.
We will see in the upcoming verses how Jesus treats people who approach Him for the wrong reasons.
He doesn’t send them away.
He doesn’t rebuke them.
He doesn’t condemn them.
I’m grateful that Jesus did not of those to the crowds who came to Him for the wrong reasons. Instead…
- Jesus continued to shepherd His inner circle.
- Jesus empowered His followers do more than they thought they could.
- Jesus used the resources given to Him to serve the needs of the people.
- Jesus revealed Himself as Messiah.
How did He reveal Himself as Messiah? I’m glad you asked.
The Jews of Jesus’ day would know when the manna stopped coming in the wilderness.
“12 The manna stopped the day after they ate this food from the land; there was no longer any manna for the Israelites, but that year they ate the produce of Canaan.” Joshua 5:12 NIV
They understood that a sign of the coming Messiah would be the returning of the manna from Heaven. Notice that Jesus multiplying the bread and fish was NOT listed in the book of John as a miracle, but a sign.
What is a miracle? A miracle is God’s supernatural intervention in this natural world.
What is a sign? A sign points to something and identifies it.
The multiplying of the fish and bread was a sign. It wasn’t just about Jesus feeding the people. It wasn’t just about Jesus showing great leadership principles. This was a sign that pointed to Jesus as Messiah and revealed Him as Messiah.
Thank You for Your grace for the times I have come to You for the wrong reasons. Lord Jesus thank You for the signs in life that point to You as Messiah. I surrender to You as Lord and Messiah. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Ty Tamasaka is an author who hold a Master of Arts Degree from Pacific Rim Christian University in Christian Ministry He is a Bible teacher who loves to encourage people to enjoy Jesus’ grace and extend His Kingdom. Ty just released his new book More than a Conqueror: 5 Pathways to Personal Revival.