When they call you ‘Lord’

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John 12:17-22

Joh 12:17 That was why the crowd (which had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead ones) was testifying.
Joh 12:18 This is the reason that the crowd met him, because they heard he had done this sign.
Joh 12:19 That was why the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you’re getting nowhere. Look, the world has gone after him!”
Joh 12:20 But some Greeks were among those who went up to worship at the festival.
Joh 12:21 That was why they came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and say to him, “Lord, we want to see Jesus.”
Joh 12:22 Philip goes and says it to Andrew; then Andrew and Philip go and say it to Jesus.

When they call you ‘Lord’

Philip finds himself serving as an emissary to Jesus here. The Greeks honor him with the designation Lord (κύριε) – the same title that they use for Jesus himself. John apparently provides this information to his readers for two reasons: it highlights what the Pharisees had complained about – that the whole world had gone after Jesus, and it establishes a context for Jesus’ teaching about self (soul) denial in vss. 23-26.

As children of God, followers of Jesus, we do have a certain status and serve as emissaries of Christ. It is right for those serving Jesus to honor us as his representatives. We don’t always receive that honor. Often those who reject Christ take out their animosity for him on us. That is all part of the job. We should be prepared for either reaction, and recognize that our connection to Christ may put us in the limelight, or send us to the cross.

Lord, whether they love us or hate us, may it be because of you.

About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is pastor of Piney Grove Advent Christian Church in Delco, North Carolina. You can contact him at marmsky@gmail.com -- !
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