He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.”66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve. 68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”70 Then Jesus replied, “Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!” 71 (He meant Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, who, though one of the Twelve, was later to betray him.)
John 6: 65-71 ESV
“From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.” (v66) People come and go in our life for various reasons. In my journey with Christ, I’ve had experienced many separations. Inevitably, seeing people go troubles my heart. Some of the separations left wounds which may take time and prayer to heal. However, I take comfort in knowing that our Lord had also experienced that refusal and separation Himself. He understands our feelings and despairs, and He can also give us that comfort and strength to carry on.
“ ‘You do not want to leave too, do you?’ Jesus asked the Twelve.” (v67) Such a test of faith coming from the Lord to the Twelve disciples who remain by the side of Him. While many are walking away from Jesus, they were given a chance to make a decision to continue to follow Him, or follow the crowd. Before any disciples said a word, Peter declared his great statement of faith – “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.” (v69) Peter may not have understood everything Jesus said, but what he did had shown his willingness to follow even when he didn’t understand it all, and even when others were walking away. His faith was not based on his understanding, nor on how many people were following like he did. His faith was based on his belief that Jesus is Lord; recognizing the value of spiritual things (the words of eternal life) more than the material and earthly desires of those who walked away; and by recognizing Jesus as Christ, the Holy One of God. What is our faith based on? Are we following because others are following? Or are we following only because He is our Lord, and in Him there is the word of life? “To whom shall we go” when we already found the best in our life?
Dear Lord, there is none like you! Finding You is like finding a precious jewel! Who would want to let go? No matter how long the journey has been, and no matter how rough the road is, may my answer still be the same – “I would follow Jesus only!” I would still choose You.