43 After the two days he left for Galilee. 44 (Now Jesus himself had pointed out that a prophet has no honor in his own country.) 45 When he arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him. They had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, for they also had been there. 46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. 47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death. 48 “Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.” 49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” 50 “Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.” The man took Jesus at his word and departed. 51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. 52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.” 53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and his whole household believed. 54 This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.
This passage is one that reveals motives of the heart. A man makes a straightforward request of Jesus – heal my son. Jesus response seems strange – “You people will never believe unless you see miraculous signs and wonders.” What is it we want of Jesus? Will we only believe if He does what we want? Is it wrong to ask Jesus for things? Jesus encourages in other places in the Gospels to ask Him for things so we are sure that the prayer of petition will be answered. But here is the rub – if all we are looking for is signs and wonders Jesus is calling us to a deeper experience of Him. Yes signs and wonders matter – but Jesus matters more. If our faith is more in the signs and wonders and what He does for us than in Him, Jesus is saying our faith has some growing to do. And so we need to walk forward with “both and” – a desire to ask the Lord for things and a desire for Him.
Father help us to ask with boldness for that which we and others need and also to go deeper into our relationship with you!
Written by Ps. Richard Botta