On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and shouted, “All who are thirsty should come to me! All who believe in me should drink! As the scriptures said concerning me, Rivers of living water will flow out from within him.” Jesus said this concerning the Spirit. Those who believed in him would soon receive the Spirit, but they hadn’t experienced the Spirit yet since Jesus hadn’t yet been glorified. When some in the crowd heard these words, they said, “This man is truly the prophet.” Others said, “He’s the Christ.” But others said, “The Christ can’t come from Galilee, can he? Didn’t the scripture say that the Christ comes from David’s family and from Bethlehem, David’s village?” So the crowd was divided over Jesus.
Food For Thought:
Jesus stood up and shouted! In his shouting, he promised to give the Holy Spirit to all who believed. Wrapped up in that promise was the claim to be the Messiah. The response from the crowd was mixed. While some could boldly claim that he was, indeed, the Christ, others simply could not. Because he didn’t look precisely as they expected, it couldn’t possibly be true. People were divided over Jesus, and how true is this still today? People are divided. With Jesus standing and shouting before them, many were uncertain. So it is no surprise that division still exists ― in the world, in Christianity, between denominations, within churches and even in families, there is division regarding who Jesus is, and that is okay. Today, just be challenged by the standing, shouting Jesus, inviting all of us to come to him and receive his Spirit.
Jesus, there is so much disagreement about who you are – about what you have done, about your role in the world, about what you are capable of. But I see you standing and I hear you shouting, assuring me that I can come to you to be filled up with the Spirit. I want to stand among the crowd saying, “He’s the Christ.” Lead me to assurance. And help me find peace where there is division over you. Amen.