Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the Feast. They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request. â€œSir,â€ they said, â€œwe would like to see Jesus.â€ Philip went to tell Andrew; Andrew and Philip in turn told Jesus.
Jesus replied, â€œThe hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.
Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name!â€ John 12:20-28 (NIV)
The Greeks want to see Jesus. Not an uncommon request even today. I believe most people want to see Jesus. Most people want to believe in God. They want to believe in God who would care and love enough to come to earth in the flesh and live among them. Believing in sight unseen is too big a jump for most. Jesus answers the request â€“ not instantly â€“ but long-term.
Jesus says it was time for His purpose to be shown. Jesus says that by dying He would multiply Himself. We know that to be true. Jesus’ death and resurrection life was multiplied not just twelve times â€“ but hundreds of times almost immediately. While we may know the twelve apostles, we also know that there were unnamed women (Acts 1:14) and in verse 15 it says the group numbered about 120. Then on Pentecost 3,000 were added to that number. If each one of them told one other person… well, do the math. John gives us his testimony of Jesus’ words that warn us that if we try to live only for ourselves we will ‘die’ spiritually as well as physically. If we give our lives, our plan away and instead choose to follow Jesus’ example and be obedient to God’s plan, then we will be a part of an eternal kingdom! While Jesus goes on to say that the path He is going to take is so hard; so horrific that He even could ask the Father to ‘save’ Him from it â€“ it is the reason He came! Jesus knows that by dying…and multiplying â€¦ the Word will go out and the Father will be honored and praised!
How wondrous that Jesus’ plan would be to use me and you to show Him many times over and spread His Good News! Heed Jesus’ words: there will be death and there will be glory. The second comes only with the first! Be expectant today! Expect Jesus to give you an opportunity to show Him to someone else. You truly may be the only Jesus they will ever see!