Bible Insights

Put God First: Don’t Lose Sight of What Matters Most

Too Often We Place Our Personal Needs Over What God Is at Work Doing

When Jesus’s friend Lazarus dies, Jesus goes to where the man is interred and, with a dramatic flair, raises him from the dead. When the people see this miracle of miracles, many believe in Jesus.

Bringing someone back to life is an amazing feat, and surely everyone should be happy. But not everyone is. Do you know who’s upset? The religious leaders, the very people who claim to represent the God who sent Jesus in the first place. But they miss it.

They can’t see God’s hand at work. Or maybe they’re not willing to. All they can think about is themselves. Though under Roman occupation, they still managed to carve out a comfy situation for themselves. And they want to keep it.

They enjoy their standing as religious leaders and the admiration of the people. Selfishly, they want to preserve what they have, to maintain the status quo. In their self-centered ambition, they lose sight of the God they profess to serve.

They fail to realize that God is present.

These religious leaders fear losing their position, their power, and their prestige. Their solution? Kill Jesus. Yep, they become so focused on protecting their current situation that they plot against their God.

It’s easy to criticize them. Yet this same thing still happens now.

How many religious leaders today have become so focused on preserving their job, maintaining their paycheck, and holding on to their followers that they oppose the work of God? It occurs. In doing so, they resist God’s movements and instead act contrary to their faith and what he has called them to do.

It happens too often, and it’s wrong. We must always put God first, even if we might lose something of lesser importance in the process.

That’s what matters most.

[Read through the Bible this year. Today’s reading is John 11-12, and today’s post is on John 11:43-53.]

Read more in Peter’s new book, Living Water: 40 Reflections on Jesus’s Life and Love from the Gospel of John, available everywhere in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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