When is a sign not a sign? When is evidence a contradiction?
When it is not really what you want or what you are looking for. Jesus had just fed the multitudes supernaturally, yet the religious leaders now came to him wanting him some kind of proof that he was the Messiah. Where were they when the multitudes where being supernaturally fed physically and spiritually?
“Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?” Matthew 26:52-54 NIV
At any time, Jesus could have displayed signs and wonders the human mind could not comprehend in order to prove himself and even to save his own life. He had many opportunities to try to get the religious elite to believe him. But faith is a matter of the heart and not the eyes. For we walk by faith and not by sight. The children of Israel saw many miracles, yet they continued to not believe in God and even turn to idolatry.
Furthermore, our mission is not to create disciples for ourselves or to get people to believe in us. Our mission is to reconcile man to God. 2 Corinthians 5:18-20; Hebrews 2:16-18
No matter what God has just done through you, carnal people will always want you to do a song and dance to prove yourself to them. But do you want to be a man-pleaser or please the only One who can give you an eternal reward?
Now am I trying to win the favor of men, or of God? Do I seek to please men? If I were still seeking popularity with men, I should not be a bond servant of Christ (the Messiah). Galatians 1:10 AMP
Jesus just told the disciples before the transfiguration that he would be killed and then would rise up again after three days. Peter began to rebuke him after that; so at least Peter understood what Jesus meant. But they heard what they wanted to hear. They expected a revolution in the government and a new kingdom on earth at that time and could not embrace the idea that all their efforts would be toward something eternal and not the here and now.
Are we not guilty of the same thing? We read the Bible and we listen to the Gospel and take from it what suits us and our agenda. But I remember the old church mothers saying humble is the way.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. Romans 12:1-3
We must die to self. That means we may have to deny our own ambitions. It means breaking off this love affair we still have with the world and it’s declaration of the measure of success and happiness. It means God becomes your main thing instead of your chick on the side. It means no to what seems to be reasonable to say yes to what seems to be incomprehensible. It means (as the old song says), “My soul says yes, no matter what the test”.