Following Jesus 11

Are you like Andrew? 

Following Jesus refers to being a disciple of Jesus. Being a disciple of Jesus entails following Jesus’ leading and learning from His teaching in order to take upon oneself, by God’s enablement, Jesus’ character.

We began our quest by looking at the character of Simon Peter. The second disciple we examine is Andrew. 

We previously stated that one of Andrew’s characteristics was humility. John 1:35-42 says, “The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples, and he looked at Jesus as he walked by and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following and said to them, “What are you seeking?” And they said to him, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come and you will see.” So they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour. One of the two who heard John speak and followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. He first found his own brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means Christ). He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John. You shall be called Cephas” (which means Peter). (John 1:35-42 ESV). 

Andrew’s initial response to follow Jesus as the Lamb of God was because when he and the other disciple heard John the Baptist speak in this way, they believed what John said and responded to it. 

Upon this decision, Jesus turned and saw them following and said to them, “What are you seeking?” And they said to him, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?” (John 1:38 ESV)

The word “Rabbi” was not only a title of honor and respect but it also implied a personal relationship between the two parties. Andrew and his partner wanted to know where Jesus was staying. When Jesus responded, “come and you will see,” they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour. 

It was at this point that Andrew went and found his brother Simon and told him that he had found the Messiah (John 1:41-42). The term “Messiah” means “Anointed One.” While the term at first applied to the king of Israel (“the LORD’s anointed” in 1 Samuel 16:6), the high priest (“the anointed priest,” Leviticus 4:3) and, in one passage, the patriarchs (“my anointed ones,” Psalm 105:15), the term eventually came to point above all to the prophesied “Coming One” or “Messiah” in his role as prophet, priest, and king. 

Andrew brought his brother Simon to Jesus. He directed, guided and led his older brother and brought him to the Messiah. It was at this point that Jesus told Simon that he would be called Cephas, meaning little rock. Jesus proclaimed that Simon would eventually be known by this name given to him by the Lord. 

It was Simon who Jesus would call the rock, and not Andrew (John 1:42). The statement not only is predictive of what Simon Peter would be called but also declarative of how Jesus would transform Simon’s character and use him in relationship to the foundation of the church (cf. Matt. 16:16–18; John 21:18–19; Acts 2:14–4:32). 

However, we never hear or read of Andrew complaining about not receiving this honor instead of his brother; or any other honor for that matter. This displays Andrew’s humility. He labored in the shadow of his brother. He esteemed other people better than himself. 

We may conclude from this scene that Andrew was modest, unassuming, self-effacing, unpretentious and down to earth. He considered the work to be done more important than who was to be in charge of the work to be done and who would receive honor for the work which was to be done. 

This is the Christ-like character possessed by Andrew and all those who emulate this one who labored in the shadows. Are you a humble disciple like Andrew? 

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