Missing The Messiah

Jon Burgess


“Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them. “Who are you looking for?” he asked. “Jesus the Nazarene,” they replied. “ I AM he,” Jesus said. (Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with them.) As Jesus said “ I AM he,” they all drew back and fell to the ground!” ‭‭John‬ ‭18:4-6‬ ‭NLT‬‬


The Gospel of John presents 7 explicit "I Am" statements from Jesus personally revealing Himself, His character, His attributes, His heart. From the looks of it, this went right over their heads. Why? We see what we want to see. We see what we are looking for not what's actually there. Jesus said "I AM : the bread of life (Jn 6:35,48), the light of the world (Jn 8:12,9:5), the door (Jn 10:9), the good shepherd (Jn 10:11), the resurrection and the life (Jn 11:25), the way, the truth, the life (Jn 14:6), the true vine (Jn 15:1). All of these revelations leading up to this reveal in the Garden of Gethsemane and who do they come asking for? Where's that guy from that dirty little place called Nazareth? The soldiers saw a criminal, the religious leaders saw a heretic, Judas saw a bad leader, the other disciples saw a confused leader. They were all missing the Messiah standing right in front of them.


Has this ever happened to you? My wife asked me to grab the ketchup out of the refrigerator and bring it to the table for where the family had gathered to eat. I open up the fridge and look around and don't see it. I yell back, "it looks like we are out of ketchup". She yells back, "Jon, it's in there. I just saw it. Check the door with the other condiments." So, I do that and still see nothing. This emboldens my conclusion that we are, indeed, out of ketchup and so yell back that supposed fact. Then I hear the chair move from the table and my longsuffering wife muttering something under her breath like "why am I the only one in this house who knows where everything is"? Then she opens the fridge with gusto and within a matter of seconds grabs the ketchup, looks me in the eyes with that "see I told you so" look but loves me too much too say it. She then heads back to the table to join the rest of the family leaving me standing stupified. I was bewildered at how I was so blind to what was right in front of me. Then I realize, I thought it was in the large Costco Heinz plastic ketchup bottle not the smaller glass one with the Safeway brand labeling. That's why I came to the erroneous conclusion that there was no ketchup even though it was right in front of me. It was in a different package then I expected. This is why they missed the Messiah back in Jesus' day and why we often miss Him to this day! God doesn't look like what we are expecting. He doesn't do what we expect Him to do, say what we expect Him to say or answer our prayers the way we thought He would. Everyone had a picture of what the Messiah would look like in their head and Jesus didn't fit the bill. So, even though He was standing right in front of them, they missed Him.


If I'm not careful I will miss what You are doing while I'm supposedly doing things for You. I pray that You would open my eyes and help me to see. You are never what I expect but will always show Yourself if I am truly seeking You. Moses came looking for a sheep, saw a burning bush and found the Living God right in front of Him. I pray this would be an Exodus 3 moment. I'm taking off my slippahs for the Great I Am is turning common ground into Holy Ground. You are taking my misconceptions and preconceptions about You and are showing me who You really are! The I Am tells me who I Am and not the other way around!

Devotions for August 16

2 Kings 24
Jeremiah 22
Psalms 112
John 18

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