“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
“Now a great crowd of the Jews heard that He was at Bethany, and they came there, not only because of Jesus but that they also might see Lazarus, whom He had raised from the dead. 10 So the chief priests planned to put Lazarus to death also, 11 Because on account of him many of the Jews were going away [were withdrawing from and leaving the Judeans] and believing in and adhering to Jesus. 12 The next day a vast crowd of those who had come to the Passover Feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. 13 So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him. And as they went, they kept shouting, Hosanna! Blessed is He and praise to Him Who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel! 14 And Jesus, having found a young donkey, rode upon it, [just] as it is written in the Scriptures, 15 Do not fear, O Daughter of Zion! Look! Your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt! 16 His disciples did not understand and could not comprehend the meaning of these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified and exalted, they remembered that these things had been written about Him and had been done to Him. 17 The group that had been with Jesus when He called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from among the dead kept telling it [bearing witness] to others. 18 It was for this reason that the crowd went out to meet Him, because they had heard that He had performed this sign (proof, miracle).”
John 12:9-18 AMP
The crowd praised and glorified Jesus as He entered into Jerusalem and He was indeed worthy of all their praise. However, they did not praise Him for the right reasons – because of who He was or because of His message – but because of the signs and wonders and miracles. The people who had been at the tomb were telling everyone that He had raised Lazarus from the dead and they all wanted to see Jesus and Lazarus. Even today, you can draw a crowd with sensational news of miracles. However, just a few days later when He was arrested, everyone abandoned Him. Not one came to His defense. The atmosphere was so negative that even Peter was too scared to admit his
association with Jesus.
“But when He was in Jerusalem during the Passover Feast, many believed in His name [identified themselves with His party] after seeing His signs (wonders, miracles) which He was doing. 24 But Jesus [for His part] did not trust Himself to them, because He knew all [men]; 25 And He did not need anyone to bear witness concerning man [needed no evidence from anyone about men], for He Himself knew what was in human nature. [He could read men’s hearts.]”
John 2:23-25 APM
Jesus knew the fickle nature of man and He was well aware that He was only popular with these people because He performed miracles to meet their needs. He did not resent all the good things He did for them; because He loved them and He came to save, heal deliver them. It is His nature and His purpose to do good and heal all. However, He also had a message to bring them that they were not as interested in.
“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty miracles performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes.”
Luke 10:13 AMP
“So when the Samaritans arrived, they asked Him to remain with them, and He did stay there two days. 41 Then many more believed in and adhered to and relied on Him because of His personal message [what He Himself said]. 42 And they told the woman, Now we no longer believe (trust, have faith) just because of what you said; for we have heard Him ourselves [personally], and we know that He truly is the Savior of the world, the Christ”. John 4:40-42 AMP
Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you see signs and miracles happen, you [people] never will believe (trust, have faith) at all.” John 4:48 AMP
The Samaritans believed on Jesus because of His message, but He was expected to do signs and miracles before the Galileans would give Him the time of day. They were hard-hearted and cynical.
In John 6:1-70, the crowd came looking for Jesus because He healed their sick. Then, after He fed the multitude with only five loaves and two fish, they wanted to make Him their king! Jesus had to walk back across the Sea of Galilee to get away from the people, but they still followed Him to the other side. Jesus knew why they were there. He told them, “You have been searching for Me, not because you saw the miracles and signs but because you were fed with the loaves and were filled and satisfied.” (Verse 26 AMP) You can tell what their priorities were – their belly! Jesus told them that they needed to believe on Him for the right reasons – because God had sent Him.
Right away they asked Him to do another miracle so they could believe – like bread from heaven! Jesus told them that He was the true Heavenly Bread. He said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35 NKJV) He also told them that if they believed on Him, that He would give them eternal life, but all they did was get mad at Jesus, find fault with Him and grumble and murmur. Then when Jesus began talking about them eating His flesh and drinking His blood, they totally lost it! At that point, everybody got up and left Him, even many of His own followers. They passed up on eternal life, because they did not like to hear the truth. The truth is not always welcome, but it is always essential.
It is time to worship, glorify and serve Jesus for Who He is and not just for what He can do!