Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing. But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.
– John 2:23-25 (ESV)
Don’t you admire Jesus?
That’s a strange question, isn’t it? It’s common to be asked if you love Jesus, or if you follow him, or if you obey him. But I read passages like the one above and I feel a deep sense of respect and admiration for Jesus as well.
Jesus was wise. At the time of this passage, his ministry was just starting, and it was being authenticated by signs and wonders. People were beginning to get swept up in it; they were starting to believe.
Look at how the New Living Translation translates that last sentence:
“No one needed to tell him what mankind is really like.”
No they didn’t. Jesus knew well what mankind was (and is) like; with his sinless eyes he had witnessed thirty years of our shenanigans, our schemes, our deceits, murders, idolotry and wickedness. We were created through him in the first place, and through our own sin we marred his creation.
I sense that Jesus was glad people believed. But he kept it in perspective; He knew that the same people praising his name on this day would be the ones calling for his death all too soon.
Jesus knows us.
And that’s what makes Jesus that much more worthy of praise. He knew all about us, and he still stayed, still labored, still loved, taught, and served a thick-necked, unstable and fickle people.
We looked in his eyes and saw love. He looked in ours and saw his own death. He didn’t need to be told what mankind was like.
Yet he stayed and saw his mission through, out of love for us and out of a deep desire to glorify the Father.
Thank you Lord Jesus!