“‘Go,’ Jesus replied, ‘your son will live.’ The man took Jesus at his word and departed.” (John 4:50)
Sadly, in our world of fake news, photoshopped pictures and editing programs on our phones and computers, it seems that we have become quite a sceptical society. Seeing is not always believing.
Back in Jesus’ times, a miracle was a miracle. Water into wine in the volume Jesus provided (John 2) certainly ensured whoever did it would gain a lot of attention. Noting this, the royal official had nothing to lose by asking Jesus for another miracle — to cure his dying son.
There is one small sentence we would all do well to hang on to as we read this. “The man took Jesus at his word and departed” (verse 50b). For many of us, taking someone at their word has not always been that easy, especially when they have let us down before. Dealing with fallen human beings all too quickly reveals the extent to which trusting people can leave us deflated because of their inability to deliver on their promises.
Not so with Jesus, who can be trusted 100 percent. When Jesus says, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life” (John 14:6), we can be assured that his word will always promise to be delivered upon. After all, Jesus is God, full of grace and truth from whom we have all received one blessing after another. (John 14:14–17).
The result of Jesus’ intervention in the man’s life by curing his son had a profound and eternal effect. “So he and his whole household believed” (verse 53). When we have our prayers answered and see God at work in our lives, what is the result? Do we even talk about it, or do we keep it to ourselves? Just think of the ease with which we can talk about what God is up to in our lives when we pray. When we recognise the answer as God’s blessing when a healing miracle occurs, a relationship is restored, or circumstances unfold that are more than flukes, then we really have a story to tell that honours God. After all, God does want what’s best for us.
Lord, help me in my unbelief, and strengthen my faith with your Word and Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.