Shelter

John 7:10 But after his brothers left for the festival, Jesus also went, though secretly, staying out of public view. 11 The Jewish leaders tried to find him at the festival and kept asking if anyone had seen him. 12 There was a lot of grumbling about him among the crowds. Some argued, “He’s a good man,” but others said, “He’s nothing but a fraud who deceives the people.” 13 But no one had the courage to speak favorably about him in public, for they were afraid of getting in trouble with the Jewish leaders.  14 Then, midway through the festival, Jesus went up to the Temple and began to teach. NLT

Why didn’t Jesus go to the Feast of Shelters with his brothers?  This feast was one of three required pilgrimages for all Jews.  It was their remembrance of the temporary dwellings they lived in for all those years in the desert.  Why did He change his mind and go?

Shelter:
Noun: A place providing food and accommodations for the homeless.
Verb: To protect or shield from something harmful

Jesus WAS the Shelter!  The miracles were a mixed blessing that could lead people to the Shelter or keep them from Him.  For some miracles were signs of power that verified Jesus’s claim that He was sent from God, but for others they were signs of power that threatened their own reputation.  “Then, midway through the festival, Jesus went up to the Temple and began to teach.”  Jesus chose to go public at this important festival, not with miraclesa  but with teaching.  A miracle was an improbable display of power in a given moment to direct the focus of those who saw and heard.  Jesus chose to teach them something even more extraordinary; the provision of God that would shelter His people for all time.  

Jesus IS the Shelter that transitions our life into eternity.  He has chosen to “teach” us by His Word that reaches through the ages and redirects our focus to provide nourishment for us that is more than food and to be our Shelter for the circumstances of daily life so we might “honor the one who sent him.”  That’s a miracle!

a John Piper

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