“Now while he [Jesus] was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name. But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people. He did not need any testimony about mankind, for he knew what was in each person” (John 2:23-25, NIV).
This is an unusual passage of Scripture. It’s not John 1:1, and its certainly not John 3:16.
The passage means this. As long as Jesus performed miraculous signs, He was the toast of the town. People wanted to see and hear Him. They looked for more and more signs and miracles.
Jesus, however, did not commit or entrust Himself to those people because He well understood the human condition. The heart of humans “is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9).
This was shown in John 6. At the beginning of the chapter Jesus fed the 5000. The people were so impressed with His ability to give them food they wanted to anoint Him king. Shortly thereafter, Jesus met the twelve by walking on water. The next day the people again flocked around Him, demanding more signs and wonders. When He taught “hard teachings” they abandoned Him in droves.
Jesus knew not to entrust Himself to those without saving faith.
In John 2:23-24, the Greek word for “believed” in verse 23 is the same word as “entrust himself” in verse 24. It is the Greek word we normally translate “believe.” They believed in His name, but Jesus did not believe in them. He knew the fickleness of their hearts.
What can this teach us about ourselves?
First, believing is not about miracles. It is about faith. The people referenced in John 2:23-25 believed in signs, but they had no saving faith. The people in John 6 believed in the food and the walking on water, but they did not have personal trust in Christ.
Second, God will not entrust spiritual truth to those without saving faith. When we draw near to God, He will draw near to us. God does not “cast pearls before swine” and He tells us not to as well.
Third, we can know God intimately and personally. He wants us to know Him. As we seek Him with all our hearts, He will be found by us (Jeremiah 29:12-14).
What should we do?
Pour out your soul before God. Ask Him to make Himself known to you. Turn from your wicked ways and turn wholly and completely to God.
When we do so, God will make Himself known to us.
If you would like to receive my devotionals each morning, you can subscribe for free at waylonbailey.com.