Evening Reading for April 4

John 7:25-36
Suggested further reading: Luke 1:1-4

We see in these verses the obstinate blindness of the unbelieving Jews. We find them defending their denial of our Lord's Messiahship by saying, `We know this man whence he is: but when Christ cometh no man knoweth whence he is.' And yet in both these assertions they were wrong!

They were wrong in saying that they `knew whence our Lord came'. They meant no doubt to say that he was born at Nazareth and belonged to Nazareth and was therefore a Galilean. Yet the fact was that our Lord was born at Bethlehem. It is incredible to suppose that the Jews could not have found this out, if they had honestly searched and inquired. It is notorious that pedigrees, genealogies and family histories were most carefully kept by the Jewish nation. Their ignorance was without excuse.

They were wrong again in saying that no man was to know whence Christ came. There was a well-known prophecy, with which their whole nation was familiar, that Christ was to come out of the town of Bethlehem (Micah 5:2; Matt. 2:6; John 7:42). It is absurd to suppose that they had forgotten this prophecy. But apparently they found it inconvenient to remember it on this occasion.

Men's memories are often sadly dependent on their wills. They shut their eyes against the plainest facts and doctrines of Christianity. They pretend to say that they do not understand and cannot therefore believe the things that we press on their attention as needful to salvation. But, alas, in nineteen cases out of twenty it is a wilful ignorance! They do not believe what they do not like to believe. They will neither read, nor listen, nor search, nor think, nor enquire honestly after truth. Can anyone wonder if such persons are ignorant? Faithful and true is that old proverb: `There are none so blind as those who will not see.'

For meditation: Luke searched out the facts to give Theophilus certainty. The unbelieving Jews guessed and were wrong. Are you studious or lazy in the things of God?

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