Reading: John 20:30-31 – “Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”
When you first read these 2 verses maybe you, like me, feel that there really is more to the story of Jesus. And being raised in this culture, if more is available, we certainly want it. More knowledge, more wisdom, more followers, more time, more possessions, more wealth – you name it – we want more.
If one reads through Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, one realizes that there aren’t a lot of stories that are in all four gospels. A few are, yes, but each gospel writer had a particular focus or purpose and gathered material accordingly. The writers even arranged the material in a different order here and there because that better fit their focus. From this perspective it makes perfect sense that John would write “Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book” at the end of his gospel. Oh wait! He then sneaks in one more miracle even after this statement.
Even though it is fascinating to think about or even to imagine all of the other potential stories about Jesus that aren’t in the gospels, the reality is that each gospel, on its own, is enough. Each, in their own way, presents a picture of Jesus that is enough to lead someone to believe in him as Lord and Savior. Now one may appeal to you more than another. That is natural as each was written with a focus or for a specific purpose.
Our reading concludes with John writing, “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” May it ever be so for you and for me.
Prayer: Lord God, the gospels are indeed more than enough – not only in content but in function. The complete picture is painted and yet your stories remain alive, offering new insights or a new application when I come to them from a different perspective or with a new need. Thank you for the living word – our living hope, our eternal promise. Amen.