We’re walking into a familiar scene here. If you’ve read the gospels (specifically Luke), we see a striking comparison to the way they treated Jesus and the way they treated the Apostles. They looked for them. They waited for them. They wanted to be healed. They sought after something so they would line the streets with the sick and homeless in hopes that the Apostles might heal them.
This became striking clear to me when I looked at the pattern of this chapter with the pattern we see in the gospels. All these people were seeking the apostles, but it doesn’t say they were saved. It says they looked for them, believed they could heal them, but doesn’t count all of them as those who were “added to the Lord.” Some of them, sure, but not all of them. Some of them were there for the show, the miracles, and the wow.
Jesus faced the same thing in his ministry. People cheered him when blind men could see. They wanted to stone him when he forgave sinners. They loved it when he turned water into wine. They hated it when he would treat women and children with respect and demand they do the same. They loved him when there was a show, but they backed away when his teaching called them out.
Everyone who walks through our church doors isn’t a follower. It’s a hard thing to swallow, but it’s true. The Bible talks about tares among the wheat. Jesus even said some of you will call me Lord and talk about all you did for me, but you never knew me. There are people who are around for the show. Jesus faced it. The apostles faced it. Our church faces it. It’s a reality.
I think this is why it’s so important to have an eye on your own spiritual life. Not because you can lose your salvation, or because one day you can walk away from it, but because there are many people in the Bible who were really close to Jesus but not with him. There were countless examples of people who did stuff in God’s name and he says they never knew him. It’s something we all have to ask ourselves. Do I know about Jesus, or do I know him? Has he changed my life, or do I behave better? Many people watched the work of God and were oblivious to it. My daily prayer is that I’m not one of those people.