“When Jesus turned and noticed them following him, he asked them, ‘What are you looking for?’ They said to him, ‘Rabbi’ (which means ‘Teacher’), ‘where are you staying?’ ‘Come and you’ll see,’ he replied. So they went and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day.“ (John 1:38-39, CSB).
Jesus’ first two disciples were actually disciples of John the Baptist before becoming Jesus’ followers. One of them was Andrew and the other was not named but perhaps was John, the author of this gospel.
Nevertheless, the two left John the Baptist to become followers of Jesus.
John the Baptist didn’t seem to be grieved by the two abandoning him and following after Jesus. In fact, John actually encouraged his disciples to follow Jesus: “The next day, John was standing with two of his disciples. When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God!’ The two disciples heard him say this and followed Jesus” (vs. 1:35-37, CSB).
Then the dominoes started to fall.
After Jesus found the two disciples of John the Baptist, one of these two, Andrew, found his brother, Simon, who Jesus renamed to Peter. Then Jesus found Philip and Philip found Nathanael.
It almost seems like Jesus was on a search and rescue mission in finding His followers!
The commonality among these early followers of Jesus was that they were all looking for something beyond themselves that brought reason and meaning to their lives. Jesus observed this attribute in people when He asked the two disciples of John the Baptist what they were looking for, when He called Philip to follow Him and when he first saw Nathanael standing under the fig tree (see vs. 48).
And, it’s a common, if not essential characteristic for all followers of Jesus. Human beings are innately looking for something otherworldly to provide meaning to their life and explain the world they live in–both the good and the bad of it (see Romans 1:16-25).
John said that Jesus brings light to this world for those that are looking for it: “He was in the world, and the world was created through him, and yet the world did not recognize him….. But to all who did receive him, he gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in his name” (vs. 10-12).
In the first half of this chapter John condenses the meaning of life into a straightforward and concise theology: Jesus is God. He created this world. He is Eternal Life. He became a human being and lived in this world for a time.
He reveals God to us!
So that we can become children of God and live with Him forever!
If you are one of those people who is looking for a reason, a meaning to your life beyond your own self, Jesus is what you are looking for!
For his invisible attributes, that is, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what he has made. (Romans 1:20, CSB)