“Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life.” John 6:68
It is easy to forget that the Lord Jesus’ ministry was not an appealing one. Not only did following Him bring mockery, poverty, physical harm, and loss of respectful status among many other things, it also promised no earthly compensation for these losses. In addition to this, Jesus’ teaching often seemed completely ridiculous. In the context of the above passage, Jesus explains the order of salvation and how there is no freewill involved in choosing Him. It then says that after hearing this, many of his disciples went back and walked no more with him. They left! Jesus crossed the line and they saw no merit or future in His ministry. They went to find some other group, some other message, some other comfort.
Yet, because it is indeed the Father who draws His own, the Eleven, sincerely regenerate, could not leave the Lord. They were puzzled too, they were suffering too, they also wondered what would come of this. Yet they recognized the uniqueness of the Lord Jesus as opposed to all other options, and decided in their given faith, to remain with Him. Where else was there to go? No one else was preaching and teaching Grace. Others may have promised comfort and entertainment, but He had the words of eternal life and they would stick it out trusting in an almighty God.
As Christians, many things often challenge our faith. There are doctrines that unsettle us, there are principles that we have a hard time defending. Sometimes we just do not understand our Bibles. However, by faith given from above, we must hold fast like the close disciples. Let’s not judge success or profit by our own standards, but let’s trust the Lord. Let’s not judge success in the world or ministries by what we see, lets judge by what the Bible says about what we see. When in a smaller church there may be temptation to walk no more with it or to feel discouraged. But does it have the words of eternal life? Is it faithful? If it is, what is God calling you to do to enrich it and give those words of eternal life a further reach?
In a world where the Gospel is not now nor has ever been palatable, we cannot loose heart, we cannot be discouraged. We expect no earthly charm here but we rely on our Savior and His words. Whether we like it or not, there simply is no one else to turn to. There is no where else to go. The Lord Jesus has the words to eternal life! Let us walk with Him, follow Him, trust Him, and worship Him and His Gospel alone!