Read John 6:25-71
Too often when we read scripture, we filter it through western-culture minds. While this isn’t necessarily a wrong thing to do, it can cause us to lose the full impact of certain passages. For example, earlier in His ministry many of Christ’s followers defected because of His “hard teachings.” (See John 6:60, 66). It appears as if He was left with only the Twelve. Then He reminded them,
“Have I not chosen you, the Twelve?” John 6:70
This is significant. You see, in those days, disciples of rabbis had to prove they were worthy of the teacher’s tutelage. A young man would approach a specific rabbi and ask if he could follow and learn from him. After passing a myriad of tests, the rabbi would determine if the student had what it took to follow him. If the young man didn’t make the cut, he would return to work in his family’s business.
Christ, the divine Rabbi, turned this tradition upside down when He hand-picked His disciples–many pulled from their family’s fishing business. This means the men He chose to follow Him didn’t make the cut with other rabbis.
Just prior to His crucifixion, Jesus reminded the Twelve, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last” John 15:16. Emboldened by His words, these “unworthy” disciples realized they were chosen, accepted the mandate, and changed the world.
Two ways to change the world: (1) Realize and rejoice that Christ chose YOU–not vice-versa. (2) Accept the mandate to bear fruit that will last by making disciples.
Where, when, and how will you begin?