John 7:40-43 (NIV)
40On hearing his words, some of the people said, “Surely this man is the Prophet.”
41Others said, “He is the Messiah.”
Still others asked, “How can the Messiah come from Galilee? 42Does not Scripture say that the Messiah will come from David’s descendants and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?” 43Thus the people were divided because of Jesus.
We had a church picnic one Sunday and it was a fun time had by many. There was music, the weather was nice, a lot of food and fun games and activities for the children. However, the next day we heard a complaint from a mother who said that it was not a good event because we did not serve her child’s favorite food. Even though her child still had fun with other children and games the mother could not get over not having a particular food item.
Ever met a person like this? Perhaps it has been you on occasions. The people in the scripture have heard Jesus say amazing things and have even experienced him performing miracles. Jesus showed love like nobody has ever showed love before and yet many thought he was from Galilee instead of Bethlehem, in which case they quickly disregarded him as being the Messiah. Are they right for questioning Jesus over this or are they just nitpicking and focusing on the wrong thing?
We still see this today as many who are skeptics of God will be quick to attack the Bible as they point out verses that shows God as mean and vengeful and yet if you read the Bible in its entirety you will see the love of God outweighs anything that is seen as mean and angry. Many Christians are guilty of nitpicking too as they many will use a few Bible verse as excuses to not show some people love when the overall message Jesus taught was for us to show love to everyone, even our enemies.
In what ways do you think you nitpick? Is there something small holding you back from seeing the big picture and fully living for God? Take time to write it down and pray about it. Then tear up the paper and move past it as you go out and show the world God’s love.
The author is the youth minister at Cedar Bayou Grace United Methodist Church in Baytown, TX.
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