Many Jews believed, but pharisees and the chief priests were fearful and sought to undermine the miracle, to subvert the reality of what had occurred. They sought to kill Jesus and Lazarus. An effort to remove any sign of the truth. (John 11, esp. vs.45-48, 53; and John 12:10-11)
And so it is today. News organizations omit Christian influence and events. History revisionists omit from school textbooks anything referring to God in our founding documents. There is nothing new under the sun. (Ecc. 1:9)
So, even when God proves Himself real, some people will still refuse to believe and actively defy the truth. Some make it their life's mission to hate God, God's people, and to discredit Him in anyway they can be hiding the truth. Why?
"I was found by those who did not seek Me; I was made manifest to those who did not ask for Me."
"All day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and contrary people." ~Romans 10:20-21
...because there are disobedient and contrary people. Boy! Did this open my eyes this morning! Sometimes, I am just shocked at people and how totally foolish they can be when the truth is staring them in the face and breathing down their neck...and yet, it seems out of pure stubbornness, they refuse to believe what is blatantly obvious. But, here it is: people will purpose in their hearts to be disobedient and contrary, unteachable, stubborn, hard-hearted. And for what purpose: pride. To what end: eternal torment. It seems the understatement of eternity, but "pride comes before a fall." And oh, how they will fall. As Pharaoh hardened his heart and set his eternal course, so do these disobedient and contrary people. The course is wide and many there are who find it...leading to death.
"And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed." ~John 3:19-20
At the risk of embodying the-pot-calling-the-kettle-"black," this causes me to consider where I am apt to be contrary. I am the queen of stubborn. I'm also the queen of say-it-straight like a mack truck. (yikes.) And I have to consciously (sometimes even after the fact...like now, as I write this section a day after posting) determine to not fight to have my own way, my own opinion, my own stance... to the death. Some things are uncompromising, like God's Word, the sanctity of human life, etc. But I can easily be contrary to people who disagree with me just for the sake of my own pride. I must humble myself and genuinely attempt to see an issue from an opposing point-of-view. This is something I have to purpose myself to do since it absolutely does not come naturally. So, mercy isn't exactly my spiritual gift. Sorry to those of you who have been the recipients of my lack of mercy. Rest assured, many in the church have this gracious gift and they are much nicer than I. So, I admit, I must look in the mirror on this one and make sure that I am not being contrary for the sake of being contrary, but seek the truth wherever it leads. Because the truth sets us free ....even if it's different from what we originally assumed.