Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Jesus knows what is in man

John 2:23-25
Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing. But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.
Living in our context of "moralistic therapeutic deism" and being myself someone who works in a therapeutic context, I have to try to process this short passage through a lens other than that of group psychotherapy or share-time at a youth retreat. My mind immediately translates this verse as, "Jesus didn't share his feelings with others..."

Brother Martin jumps off from this verse to talk about an application for us, that we ought not to trust ourselves to any spiritual teacher, but bring all teaching back to the scripture. He says that he will concede that many of the saints were indeed holy, righteous men, but they were not to be followed at every point. So, Benedict was a holy man, but where his 'rule' is set up as a necessity, he is not to be followed. He lists a number of heroes and says essentially, where their faith was pointed at Christ, follow their example, but where they err, get off the train.

Accordingly, I ought not entrust myself to Dr. Martin himself, or to C. S. Lewis, or to J. I. Packer or N. T. Wright or anyone whom I am now or have ever been tempted to say, "This is it. This person understands the Gospel and will give it to me straight."