“Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, ‘What do you seek?’ They said to Him, ‘Rabbi (which translated 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” (John 1:38–39).
As Andrew and John walked after Him, “Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, ‘What do you seek?’” He already knew what the two wanted. The Lord asked the question to challenge them to consider their motives. He did not ask them who they were seeking, but what they were seeking.
By asking “Where are You staying?” Andrew and John were not just asking where He was staying; they were courteously requesting an extended private interview with Him. The question also signaled their willingness to become His disciples.
Jesus’ immediate response, “Come, and you will see,” was the invitation Andrew and John were hoping for. Jesus knew their hearts, that they were honest, sincere seekers.
John does not record what they discussed that memorable evening, but the Lord undoubtedly “opened their minds to understand the Scriptures” (Luke 24:45). Whatever He said was enough to persuade them that He was indeed Israel’s Messiah, as Andrew’s excited testimony to his brother Peter the next day indicates (John 4:40–41).
In your service to Christ, be sure your motives are pure. Otherwise the Lord will know.
“What do you seek?” is a good question for us to ask ourselves as we approach the Lord, challenging our motives. What would you say you are seeking Him for? And if you’re not finding it, is it because you’re seeking amiss or for the wrong reasons—or perhaps seeking something God knows you don’t need?
From Daily Readings from the Life of Christ, Vol. 1, John MacArthur. Copyright © 2008. Used by permission of Moody Publishers, Chicago, IL 60610