Trust Also in Me

May 14, 2017

Summary

Has anyone ever stated to you the phrase ‘Trust me.’

I am sure that most of us have had that statement spoken to us at some point in our lives.  Maybe the speaker was standing in front of you with a blindfold in their hand ready to take you into a maze in some group building exercise, and so, was emphasizing their trustworthiness. Or, perhaps someone has asked for your help with money and in saying, “Trust me.” was letting you know that you could believe that they would pay you back. Or, it might have that someone was asking for your forgiveness. Perhaps the person had lied and broken your trust, and when they spoke those words they were looking deeply into your eyes and with those words seeking your renewed trust, forgiveness, and further love.

In whatever way those words have been spoken to you, they are words that ask for great faith from you towards the asker.

In today’s gospel this morning, Jesus speaks these same words to his disciples.

These words are spoken as Jesus shares with Thomas, Philip and the other disciples during the ‘Last Supper’ on Maundy Thursday, the evening before Jesus’ death.  Jesus knows that he only has a few more hours with his disciples who have literally eaten his dust during the hundreds of miles they have followed him throughout Galilee, Samaria and Judea during the past three years.

And so, in this last conversation before his death he is asking them to trust him.

Jesus’ statement is usually translated in one of two ways.  Either, “Believe in God, believe also in me.”  Or, “Trust in God; trust also in me.”

With these words, Jesus is reminding the disciples of his relationship with them, but also asking for more…trust.

Their’ past three years together, has been based upon trust and belief.  They would not have followed Jesus when he called if there was not the first inkling of trust in him, and they would not have continued over all of those months and miles if they had not started to believe that Jesus was of, and from God.  They had followed Jesus as their rabbi, because they understood him innately as someone who was greater and more, than anyone they had met before.

Rob Bell tells of the rabbi, disciple relationship in this way.  Every Jewish boy started learning and memorizing the Bible when he was six.  All of them learned and memorized the entire first five books of the Bible until the age of ten.  At that point those who showed promise continued learning and memorizing until the age of fourteen, all of the others would start learning the trade of their fathers.  By fourteen the students would have the entire Jewish Bible, our Old Testament, completely memorized and have started learning the art of questions and the oral tradition surrounding the scripture.

You see when the teacher was asked a question, the teacher would answer with a question, to promote greater understanding and to take the student to the next level of comprehension.

The teacher or rabbi did not want information spit back at them, they wanted to see that the student was thinking and growing in their ability to really think.

At fourteen, those who were showing the greatest talent would seek to follow a learned rabbi, while all the others would learn a trade.  You couldn’t just choose a rabbi though, you had to go and be questioned by the rabbi, and you could only follow if he chose to call you.  It was a very hard and serious process.  For the student did not only want to have the best rabbi, but the rabbi wanted the best disciple.  The rabbi also needed to trust those who would follow him.  In other words it was a relationship that needed trust on both sides.

It is this trust from which Jesus is speaking in today’s text.   But then he is asking for more from his disciples when he says, “Trust God; trust also in me.  It is almost as if Jesus is saying, “Trust me, for I trust you.”

In these words today, Jesus knows that tomorrow he will die, and his disciples will be left to fend for themselves.  Now, of course we know that on the third day he erupted out of the grave and lived new life, but even then his disciples only had a short time with him before he ascended to heaven.  So you see, Jesus wants his disciples, his followers, you and me to trust him, because he trusts us.  Jesus wants us to believe in him, because he believes we can be the people he created us to be.  Jesus trusts, that if we continue to walk in his ways, to live in his love, to trust him we can continue on doing all the good that he did while here on earth.

Listen to verse 12, “I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father.”

In other words people, we’ve got to stand up in our faith and respond to Jesus’ challenge to trust him, and start living out our Christianity like we’re not only following the greatest teacher, and leader the world has ever known, but that we also trust that he is our Savior, and so, we want to then live as he commanded us to; by living his love out in the world.

Believe and trust that Jesus has died for you, forgives you of your sins, and loves you. Believe that he is the one that saves you by his act of love upon the cross, and so our actions, our lives are not lived to earn his love, but rather, to share the love he has given us, with our neighbors in the world.

Thus, you can also then believe that God has given you the gifts, both, innately within yourself, and to you in your life, so as to be able to share Jesus’ love with the world, right now.

Have the trust that you have the gifts to share Jesus’ love by helping your neighbor, you know, the one whom you don’t really like, but you know needs a helping hand.  Have the trust that the Lord provides enough, and so you have money to give to God’s work in the world. You can give trusting that the Lord will provide for your needs.  Trust that Jesus has given you the courage to tell others about him, and his love and forgiveness. All you need to do is speak, believing the Holy Spirit will give you the words and silences that are needed.  And, trust that Jesus gives you the love and forgiveness to offer forgiveness to the person who has hurt and grieved you deeply.

Try and follow Jesus each day as his disciple. Speaking to him, listening in his word and in your prayers, and grow in your belief and trust that he is your Savior and Lord, and the one who gives you all that you need, to be his beloved in the world.

Trust that Jesus has created you as the person you are and has saved you in his death, so that you can share his love, and speak out his name today and every day, with your neighbors, and to the world.

Amen.

Bible References

  • 1 Peter 2:2 - 10
  • John 14:1 - 14

Topics

        


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.