The One Thing
“. . . seeking from Him a sign. . .” Mark 8:11
What were the grounds of Jesus’ authority? The Pharisees' question was a reasonable one. They want Him to prove Himself by performing a miracle, some striking act of power, that would show He was not like other men. But He would not give them a sign. There had been other times Jesus had recognized the need for a miracle as a validation.
When John the Baptist sent his disciple to ask Him the crucial question, “Are you the one, or shall we look for another?” Jesus points to His miracles as proof to believe. He said, “Go tell John what you hear and see.” “The blind see, the lame walk, the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up.” These were the very signs the Pharisees were looking for, but to them, He refused to give any demonstration. One must ask why?
The difference in our Lord’s response to the Pharisees, and John’s messengers, was the spirit in which the request was made. John already believed, but needed support. The Pharisees were hostile and unbelieving. Their unbelief grew stronger and stronger, till it ended in a plot to kill, to crucify Jesus. Any proof Jesus offered would have made no difference, they would’ve used it against Him, and accused Him of being of the devil.
When we look to a miracle rather than His mercy, we focus on what God can do “for” us, instead of what God can do “in” us and “through” us.
The ultimate proof of Christ’s claim is a matter of faith. Faith is not based on any external event or intellectual formula. It’s an immediate, spontaneous response of the heart, it’s deep calling, so deep it’s the intertwining of our life with the life of God. No external sign is required. God gives us faith to recognize Christ, not just for moments, but in every moment of our life.
Jesus refused the Pharisees because they lacked faith. Faith predisposes us to expect miracles. Christianity is essentially miraculous. The fact that God was made flesh and dwelt among us, is the basis for all miracles in this life.
People today still demand signs and external proofs, still, Jesus warns us not to forget the one thing necessary for the miraculous. Unless we become as little children, we will not enter the kingdom.
Is Jesus enough for you?