On Monday I will be celebrating my third wedding anniversary with my wife. It’s crazy how time flies. It’s even crazier how much has happened during those three years.
But even before we were married, we dated for 4 1/2 years. So really, we’ve been together for 7 1/2 years. We’ve been friends for 8 years.
And I would say we know each other pretty well.
We may not be able to read each other’s mind every time. And I still drop the ball on what she really wants sometimes. But she knows me better than anyone else on the planet and vice-versa.
And I definitely know her well enough to know she’s not a killer.
A couple years ago a guy known as the “Craigslist Killer” was arrested for murder, robbery, and some other charges. All the while he was living with his fiance in a small apartment in the city. They had been together for over four years, and she didn’t have a clue. She swore that he was the sweetest man she knew and that he could never hurt a fly.
She was wrong. She didn’t really know him at all.
In John 14, Philip asks Jesus to show him the Father and that would be enough for him to believe what Jesus is saying. Jesus responds, “You’ve been with me all this time and you still don’t know me?”
Philip and the disciples had been with Jesus for at least 3 years. Day in and day out — traveling, eating, witnessing miracles, listening to his teachings, attending feasts and parties. They had left everything behind so that they could follow Jesus wherever he went. They knew Jesus better than anyone else on the planet.
But they didn’t know him at all.
They still didn’t get who he was or what he came to do.
However, the same question could be asked about the reader of John’s gospel. “You have been with me for so long and you still don’t know me?”
The main purpose of John’s gospel is that people may believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that by believing they may have life in his name (John 20:31). Jesus makes 7 bold I AM statements, using his words to reveal who he is and what God is doing through him. Jesus also performs 7 miracles. John calls them “signs.” Each of these sayings and signs were meant to point the audience to the true revelation of God in Jesus.
The disciples were with Jesus for 3 years. The reader (that’s you) has been with Jesus through the length of the gospel.
Have you seen Jesus? Then you’ve seen God. Do you know Jesus? Then you know God.