Jesus performed many miracles throughout His earthly ministry. Some of which, no doubt, are not recorded in scripture. The healing of the Nobleman’s Son recorded in the Gospel of John, reveals several things concerning Jesus.
The Identity of Jesus (v. 44). There is somewhat of a dilemma in interpreting verses 43-45. Jesus is leaving Samaria and heading to Galilee. It is mentioned that Jesus is known to have quoted the proverb that says that ‘a prophet has no honor in his own country’. Galilee is part of Jesus’ homeland. If this is the case, then why did the Galileans receive Jesus as it says in verse 45? The solution to this perceived problem is that Jesus’ homeland is Jewish soil. Therefore, it is the Jewish people that do not accept Jesus. Overall, this remains to be true to this very day. Jesus is not accepted in the very region of the world from which He came.
Our focus here, however, is on who Jesus identifies Himself as. He identifies Himself as a prophet. This is just one of three offices that Jesus holds. Jesus is understood to be both prophet, priest, and king.
Prophet. In the Old Testament, a prophet is God’s mouthpiece. The responsibility of a prophet is to communicate to the people a message from the Lord. To prophesy can refer to the foretelling of the future and the forthtelling of truth. Today, there is no need for foretelling due to the fact that we have the complete Word of God that reveals to us God’s plans for the future. However, the forthtelling of truth is certainly alive and well today. Pastors and Teachers are considered as Prophets, as they proclaim the truth of God’s Word. Jesus is a prophet in both senses. He reveals to us the future and He proclaims truth. Jesus came to proclaim an end to the curse of sin. He came to proclaim the Gospel.
Priest. As priest, Jesus gave Himself as the sacrifice for all sin. A priest, in the Old Testament, was a mediator between God and man. The priest would offer up animal sacrifices to God in order to atone for the sins of the people. Jesus came as the Great Eternal High Priest who offered the once and for all final sacrifice for sin. We do not need to go to an earthly priest or anyone else in order to have an audience with God. Jesus is our advocate with the Father. By placing our faith in the Lord Jesus, we now have complete and open access to God.
King. As King, Jesus is more than a King of Israel, He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He reigns supreme. He is above all things. Jesus rules with perfect justice. With Jesus as King, sin no longer has dominion over us.
Anthony Carter of Ligonier Ministries writes, “As powerful as sin is, the blood of Christ is more powerful still. In Christ, the chains of our captivity have been broken, and the light of His grace has shone the way of freedom. But how has He freed us? Christ has secured our freedom because, in the shedding of His blood, He operated in the divinely ordained munus triplex, the threefold office of Prophet, Priest, and King. This is why He is called “the faithful witness” (as Prophet); “the firstborn of the dead” (as Priest); and “the ruler of kings on earth” (as King) in Revelation 1:5. In the threefold office of Christ, we are granted our freedom from sin.”
The Fame of Jesus (v. 47). The Nobleman heard of all the things that Jesus had done. He knew that Jesus could heal his son. Jesus was known as the miracle worker. What is interesting here is that Jesus was known more for what He did rather than for who He was. In today’s world titles are overrated. Everybody wants a title, they want a position. They want respect. However, what good is a title if it is not backed up by action. As Christians, we should not be known simply by our name, we should be known for what we do. We should be known for our sacrifice, our witness, our love, etc. What are you famous for? Are you known for who you are or for what you do? What is our church famous for? Are we known in the community simply by name or are we known for what we do?
The Frustration of Jesus (v. 48). Jesus mentioned that the only way they would believe is if they saw signs and wonders. Here Jesus, shows His frustration with His own people, the Jews. They refused to believe in Jesus for who He claimed to be. They needed proof. This is how many people are today. They refuse to believe because they don’t see anything. We preach the Gospel, but they do not see the Gospel lived out in our lives. People are searching for answers. They long for the truth. We have the truth. We know the truth. We must show them the truth in more ways than just our words.
The preciseness of Jesus (v. 49-53). The Nobleman’s son was healed at the exact moment when Jesus spoke the word. We serve an on-time God. He does not operate on our time table. He has His ways and His ways are always best. He acts at just the right time. When He does act, He does so with perfect precision. He pays attention to detail and He gets the job done right. Oh, that we would learn from Jesus. Too often we get ahead of ourselves and God. Too often we take matters into our own hands and try to do things our way. We need to learn to trust that He knows what is best and His timing and His ways are always perfect.
The Goal of Jesus (v. 53). The ultimate goal of Jesus is that people might believe. He did not heal the Nobleman’s son for his sake. He had compassion on the boy, yes, but He was not concerned for his physical healing. He was concerned for his soul. Think about. What is our real goal? Why do we do what we do? We say that everything we do is all about bringing people to Jesus. But, is it really? Do we do what we do for the glory of God or for our own fame? Our goal should be the same as Jesus, that people might believe.
There is a lot that we learn from this miracle concerning Jesus. The pattern that Jesus set for us is very clear. What are you identified as? What are you known for? Do you do your best in all you do? What is your goal? These are just a few of the questions we should consider as we strive to pattern our lives after our Savior.