Devotion from Euguene Brunow – January 8, 2024

You Have Seen Nothing Yet

The gospel for this coming Sunday (Second Sunday after the Epiphany) is John 1:43-51. It is the narrative of Jesus calling Philip and Nathanael as his first disciples.

Jesus is going to Galilee. But as he was about to leave, he finds, by design and intention, Philip of Bethsaida. Bethsaida was the city of Andrew and Peter. Nothing in God’s Kingdom is an accident or coincidence. That can certainly be of great comfort us as we navigate all the craziness in this world. Being God’s children is a definite and deliberate act of our Lord. Christ’s powerful call makes Philip and us his follower and apostle.

Philip being a good evangelist and brother quickly and shares this great news with Nathanael. But Nathanael is not an easy convert. He is very skeptical because Jesus is from Nazareth and in the opinion of Nathanael, “can anything good can come out of Nazareth?”

As we share Christ in our sometimes hostile world we, too, will be confronted with negative reactions. We, however, have Jesus assurance and example that barriers can be overcome. He does not give up on Nathanael or anyone else for whom he has died.

He surprises Nathanael about what he knows about Nathanael and makes a believer out of him. In Nathanael’s response Jesus tells that he has nothing yet. And indeed, Nathanael and the other disciples would experience incredible miracles and get wonders including his resurrection from the dead.

While we have not physically seen all that early disciples saw, but we have his Word and Sacraments that brought us into his kingdom and continue sustain us. Through the miracle of our baptism we were brought into
the kingdom of heaven. Luther encourages us to renew our baptism on a daily basis. That continues to remind us whose child we are and who made us his own. Through this sacrament we are reminded that we are daily washed clean from all our sins. His strong Word gives us food for our daily journey. And, in the Lord’s Supper we are reminded that the best is yet to come for us in heaven.

Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you calling us into your heavenly kingdom and being with us every minute of the
way. Amen.