And He marveled because of their unbelief, (6:6 ESV).
Consider Him Who Marveled
I couldn’t get it out of my mind, this idea of Jesus marveling over something. The Creator of all the Universe, Who placed the stars in the heavens and knows them all by name, Who knows the number of hairs on our head… Marveled.
- He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together, (Colossians 1:15-17).
- He counts the number of the stars;
He gives names to all of them, (Psalm 147:4).
- Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered, (Luke 12:7).
It’s intriguing to consider; He Who knows all… still Marveled.
This word in the Greek is also translated as “wondered” and “was amazed.” The definition from Louw-Nida Greek Lexion is “to wonder, to be amazed, to marvel’ (whether the reaction is favorable or unfavorable depends on the context).”
- And He wondered at their unbelief, (6:6 NAS).
- He was amazed at their lack of faith, (6:6 NIV).
And because of their unbelief, the Scriptures tell us His miracles were limited.
Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and among his own relatives and in his own household.” 5 And He could do no miracle there except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And He wondered at their unbelief. And He was going around the villages teaching.,(6:4-6).
Jesus went on from His hometown and His relatives, to teach in other villages (6:6); to send His disciples out with authority over demons, preaching repentance (6:7-12); to feed the five thousand with five loaves and two fish (6:33-44); to walk on water (6:47-52); and to heal many through the mere touching of His cloak (6:53-56).
But in His hometown, among His own, His miracles were restricted, because of their unbelief.
However, this is not the only time in Scripture where we read of Jesus in this state of wonder, marvel and amazement; but the context is quite different.
But the centurion said, “Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I also am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” 10 Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled and said to those who were following, “Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel, (Matthew 8:8-10).
In this context, Jesus Marveled because of one man’s great faith.
How do we respond to Him Who Marveled?
I suppose the question we must ask ourselves is, in what context do we most often find Him Who Marveled when He considers our faith?
- Does He Marvel as we thwart His provision through our lack of faith?
- But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, 8 being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways, (James 1:6-8).
- Or does He Marvel as we receive the blessing of His faithfulness through faith and humility?
- “Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it,” (John 14:13-14).
- Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you, (James 4:10).
Whatever side of the coin of faith and unbelief we find ourselves, often depends on the day or circumstances. Oh let us pray the consistent variable defining our faith would be our unwavering confidence in His lovingkindness and faithfulness; that we would live steeped in the context of great faith, to hear Him Who Marveled reacting with favor, just as the centurion heard.
And Jesus said to the centurion, “Go; it shall be done for you as you have believed,” (Matthew 8:13).