TEACHER: Ken Hicks
SCRIPTURES: John 14:1-11; John 1:45-49
BOTTOM LINE: The Apostles Battled Their Own Flesh, but their Love for God’s Word Allowed Them to Hear & Respond to God’s Call!
QUESTION: Do we have Ears to Hear God? Are we Submersed in God’s Word to recognize His Voice and Lean Into His Promises?
Today … We’re looking at 2 great friends, Phillip & Nathaniel.
In all 4 listings of the Calling of the 12… Phillip’s name is 5th… giving us an indication that sort of like Peter was the Captain of the Entire Team, Phillip is the Leader/Captain of this 2ndUnit.
Phillip grew up in Bethsaida, the same fishing village w/ Simon Peter & Andrew. The odds are they all grew up as friends, going to the same Synagogues; hanging out together; etc… Ultimately, they all became Fisherman in Galilee. So these guys were friends before they ever received and answered the Call of Jesus.
Phillip was this Process-Guy… Facts & Figures… By the Bookso to speak … and REALLY Practical Minded. Phillip was often the guy who was finding ways and reasons they Couldn’t do things, instead of finding ways TO do them.
So here’s 3 things I think we can learn from Phillip:
- Can We HEAR God’s Call?
- Phillip had the Spiritual Giftof Pessimism.
- Phillip Questioned Jesus All the Way to the End.
Nathaniel’s nick-name was Bartholomew… which was a Hebrew name meaning Son of Tolmai.
Nathaniel was brought to Jesus by Phillip [kinda like Peter & Andrew] and they were great friends! Phillip knew they had been studying the Word, and he says to Nathaniel “I have found the long-awaited Messiah”… and Nathaniel was located about where Phillip was when Jesus found him.
2 things I think we can glean from Nathaniel:
- Nathaniel has a PASSION for STUDYING God’s Word.
- Nathaniel’s Battle of SIN vs. HEART.
Nathaniel truly had a passion for God’s Word! YES, he battled his own Flesh too! He wrestled w/ some Prejudice we know [amongst other things I’m sure] but WOW … his heart was so pure. He was so on fire for Jesus that Jesus recognized it from the very beginning.
How About us?
Do we find ourselves in this constant wrestling match w/ God trying to hear His Call for our lives?
Are we using our Spiritual Gift of Pessimism… or are we totally in love w/ the Word of God … and claiming His Promises in our lives?
Are we battling many of the same battles on this earth as others? Are we battling Living From the Jesus in us every single day?
Are we battling walking In-Christ as the LEADER God has called us to be in the workplace? And yet there’s this tension of how to Love Well … and still make Profits … pay bills … make Payroll … Growth Strategies … all that stuff?
Are we battling the realities of DIVORCE … and still struggling to find Hope that God has something store some day in our lives … because the present day is simply overwhelming to be honest?
I don’t know all the Battles each of us are engaged in … but I do know that the odds are we will all struggle w/ our own Sin … and I pray … oh I pray … that we would find ourselves like Nathaniel … and that our total and complete LOVE for God’s Word and our Pure & Sincere Heart will be one that is recognized by the Messiah from Nazareth!
One that we would see and call Rabbi … son of God … and one that He would see us and give us His blessing starting TODAY … not waiting until we’re entering the Kingdom of God!