Foot-in-Mouth, Much?

I am in this class where we are working through the gospel of John, and last night when I was reading my textbook I remembered why I am a disciple of Jesus.


In John 1:43, Jesus calls Phillip to be his disciple, and then Phillip goes to get his friend Nathanael, whom we soon learn is a huge jerk. Here is how I know: Phillip goes, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote – Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” And then Nathanael doesn’t say, like, “Way to go!” or, “I believe you because that’s what friends are for!”. Instead he goes, “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?”

YES, Nathanael, actually it can, in fact the best thing ever is from Nazareth, and while you’re busy being a flippant snob your buddy Phillip is trying to let you in on it. What an idiot.

At least that’s what I’m thinking; apparently Phillip is just excited or he is a very longsuffering friend or he’s filled with the Holy Ghost or something, because instead of punching Nathanael in the stomach and leaving him there to wallow in his useless superiority complex, he just says, “Come and see.”

So if I were Jesus, I would be really holy of course, so I would do something like sit Nathanael down and give him a firm, well-reasoned lecture about how regional prejudices are oppressive and we don’t do things that way here in the kingdom of God. But the real Jesus, who is not me, has been expecting Nathanael and when he sees him he goes, “An Israelite indeed, in whom there is no guile!”

Like he’s proud or something. Like Nathanael’s apparent inability to FILTER is somehow an asset, or charming, or sincere, or honest or transparent or even sort of vulnerable…

Oh. Hmm. Those last three? [Major deficiencies of mine]. Things I’ve been trying to be when I’m with my closest friends. Things Nathanael could probably teach me if he was here and I wasn’t wallowing in my own judgment-free superiority complex. And they’re things Jesus saw and loved in Nathanael before he saw the idiot who had insulted the eternal Word of God become flesh. He wasn’t disappointed. He was thrilled to finally meet his guileless disciple.

Jesus of Nazareth: seein’ the potential in stuck-up jerks like me.

Ever learned anything from an idiot disciple?
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