Jesus replied, “I did one miracle on the Sabbath, and you were amazed. But you work on the Sabbath, too, when you obey Moses’ law of circumcision. (Actually, this tradition of circumcision began with the patriarchs, long before the law of Moses.) For if the correct time for circumcising your son falls on the Sabbath, you go ahead and do it so as not to break the law of Moses. So why should you be angry with me for healing a man on the Sabbath? Look beneath the surface so you can judge correctly.” (John 7:21-24)
Read: Proverbs 14:1 – 16:33
Relate: Possibly it is true, more likely it is fictional, but I’ve read that the following series of advertisements were placed in a small town newspaper:
Monday – The Rev. A.J. Jones has one color TV set for sale. Telephone 626-1313 after 7 p.m. and ask for Mrs. Donnelley who lives with him, cheap.
Tuesday – We regret any embarrassment caused to Rev. Jones by a typographical error in yesterday’s paper. The ad should have read: “The Rev. A.J. Jones has one color TV set for sale, cheap…Telephone 626-1313 and ask for Mrs. Donnelley, who lives with him after 7 p.m.”
Wednesday – The Rev. A.J. Jones informs us that he has received several annoying telephone calls because of an incorrect ad in yesterday’s paper. It should have read: “The Rev. A.J. Jones has one color TV set for sale, cheap. Telephone 626-1313 after 7 p.m. and ask for Mrs. Donnelley who loves with him.”
Thursday – Please take notice that I, the Rev. A.J. Jones, have no color TV set for sale; I have smashed it. Don’t call 626-1313 anymore. I have not been carrying on with Mrs. Donnelley. She was, until yesterday, my housekeeper.
Friday – Wanted: a housekeeper. Usual housekeeping duties. Good pay. Love in, Rev. A.J. Jones. Telephone 626- 1313.
React: Getting back to John chapter seven, I am not a big fan of that last sentence Jesus used: “Look beneath the surface so you can judge correctly.” It would be a lot easier to judge Reverend Jones than it would be to find out what is really going on. I make snap judgments all the time. I hear something and I immediately react. I see something and I immediately form opinions. I do not bother to find out the truth, I simply assume. What is worse, I find that I impose my own struggles or past failures on to what I believe are the personal thoughts and motives of others. If I struggle with anger, I assume that other person messaging me is doing so from a position of anger. If I am a gossip, I assume that others are gossiping about me. I don’t look beneath the surface. I don’t bother to try to find the cause behind the behavioral issues which are merely symptoms.
God, I am sorry for the times I have made unjust assumptions. I am sorry for the times I have jumped to harsh conclusions. Give me the patience to dig beneath the surface before making judgments. Give me the wisdom to look deeper. Help me to see those around me through Your eyes.