Being Drawn To Jesus Christ
Rock of Offence Commentary
Jesus went up to the mountain to pray just before He selected his disciples. He never acted on His own but always sought the Father's direction in all He did. It is clear from other sections of the Bible that the Father had been preparing the men that would follow Jesus in His earthly ministry for some time maybe even from childhood. In Matthew 4:21-22 Jesus saw James and John his brother with their father Zebedee in a ship mending nets. It says that Jesus called them and they immediately left the ship and their father and followed Him. Nobody does that, especially in Jewish families of that day, which were so closely knit together, unless some kind of preparation had been going on in their lives. Family members did not just pick up and leave like that. The Bible says they left "immediately." They didn't take a few days to discuss it over with the family. They didn't take a week to make preparations. It says "immediately." The SAME THING happened in the preceding verses with Peter and Andrew--they dropped their careers as fishermen "immediately" and followed Jesus.
Jesus said in John 6:44...
"No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day."One major point that separates Christianity from religion is the question of who takes the initiative. In religion, man is always the one reaching out toward God, trying to do the things that pleases Him. This is true in Islam, Mormonism, Jehovah Witnesses, Buddhism and many of the world's religions. Unfortunately, this mentality is found in Christianity as well. But, it isn't there because God demands it. Man placed it there through his traditions and religious teachings. Christianity is not based on a system of "good works" which somehow obtains God's approval and acceptance. True Biblical Christianity is God Himself coming down and taking on Himself our human nature and dying on the cross in our place for our sins. It is a righteous God sacrificing Himself for unrighteous man so that man can go free. This is the greatest act of love that can be demonstrated.
Salvation can be seen through God's act of leaving heaven and coming into our world as a man to suffer all the temptations and pain we suffer. He did this to represent man on the cross and later, after his resurrection, to also become man's high priest (Hebrews 4:14-16). No one else is better qualified and familiar with the human experience than the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus did not just leave heaven, while remaining isolated from all the pain and temptation humans suffer, to die on the cross and go back to heaven. The Bible says that Jesus "was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin." He knows how we feel. He knows what it means to hurt. He knows the experience of being tempted when strength is at its weakest.
Jesus is called "the good shepherd" in the Bible. A mid-eastern shepherd of Jesus' time had a close relationship with his flock of sheep. He knew each one by name and constantly kept watch over them. When one sheep would get lost, he would leave the rest of the flock to hunt for it.
Matthew 18:11-14 says...
"For the Son of man is come to save that which is lost. How think ye? If a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish."So many Christians take the credit for "finding the Lord" when just the reverse is true. The Lord came looking for us! When lost, you have no way to gain your bearings or find your way unless someone comes into your situation and finds you. Mankind is in a lost state. This means they have become separated from God in such a way that they don't even know they're lost. This is one of the reasons God refers to people as sheep. When sheep wander away from the flock and get lost, they don't know they're lost. They are in danger and, unless the shepherd goes out and searches for that lost sheep, it will perish.
The process of drawing you to Jesus Christ is part of this search. It is an attempt by the Father to help you discover the fact that you are lost and how to find your way to safety. This is one of the main functions of the Gospel--to allow God's Word to alert you to the danger of being eternally separated from God and to find the "Good Shepherd" who will end your lost state and place you back into the safety of His flock. John 10:11 says...
"I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth His life for the sheep."
The "drawing" of a person to Jesus Christ is a divine act. It can begin as encounters with other Christians. You might find yourself starting to hear the Gospel at every turn, whether you want to or not. Christians will turn up everywhere.
The drawing process is designed to expose you to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and in many cases, it is not something that is welcomed. Remember that sheep think they are all right even while lost and exposed to dangers. Most people shrug off the Gospel because they're not aware of their lost state and the eternal danger that exists.
John 12:32 says...
"And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will DRAW all men unto Me."