Summary: Philip: Commonness and the Uncommon God
The 12 Apostles
Week 3 – Philip
Dr. Rik B. Wadge, Ph.D.
"Commonness and the Uncommon God"
The Art Collector
A famous art collector is walking through the city when he notices a mangy cat lapping milk from a saucer in the doorway of a store. He does a double take. He knows that the saucer is extremely old and very valuable, so he walks casually into the store and offers to buy the cat for two dollars. The storeowner replies, "I’m sorry, but the cat isn’t for sale."
The collector says, "Please, I need a hungry cat around the house to catch mice. I’ll pay you 20 dollars for that cat." And the owner says "Sold," and hands over the cat.
The collector continues, "Hey, for the twenty bucks I wonder if you could throw in that old saucer. The cat’s used to it and it’ll save me from having to get a dish." The owner says, "Sorry buddy, but that’s my lucky saucer. So far this week I’ve sold sixty-eight cats."
How many of you have been in the same type of situation. You wander into a thrift store hoping to come out with a Mona Lisa.
I think much of life is looking for the uncommon in the midst of the common.
The beautiful flowers we find in the midst of the desert sand.
The silver lining found in the midst of life’s clouds.
That perfect man of your dreams.
That perfect girl of your dreams.
The job that’s just right for you, among the multitudes that aren’t.
The priceless antique saucer for just $20 bucks.
In a world of common occurances, common reactions, common expressions, common languages, common skills.... common everything..... there is the uncommon God!
And Philip’s about to meet Him.
43 The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.” 44 Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” 46 “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked. “Come and see,” said Philip.
Philip’s name means: “lover of horses.” Philip was an ordinary Greek name commonly used in the first century. It described a common person’s fondness to a common animal.
Here, Philip, this common guy meets the uncommon God of the universe. Look at the situation, Philip has met God. And He goes out of his way to tell his friend about Him. “Philip found Nathanael ...” It’s the picture of Sherlock Holmes tracking down a suspect.
Look at how thoughtful and articulate Philip becomes: vs 45. “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”
This tells us a couple of things One: Philip was somewhat educated in the Old Testament, and two: He was impressed by Jesus!
Are you impressed with Jesus? Do you still possess the wonder of knowing the God of the Universe? Or has your relationship with God become commonplace?
One person even went so far as to compare his relationship with God with that of his Pastor. He said, God is a lot like our pastor. I don’t see him throughout the week and I don’t understand him on Sunday.
There are no humans, not even Pastors, who are on the same level as God.
During Sunday school, a pastor, was teaching the adult bible class, he selected a elderly couple to act out the burning bush scene from the Old Testament. The husband was asked to supply the voice for God and his wife would read Moses’ lines.
All went well until they got to verse 15. The wife, as Moses, mistook her husband’s dialogue for her own and read, "Say to the Israelites, ’The Lord, the God of your fathers--’"
The pastor interrupted her. "Wait a minute. You’re not God."
Without missing a beat, her husband said, "I’ve been trying to tell her that for 40 years."
6 No one is like you, O Lord; you are great, and your name is mighty in power.
11 “Who among the gods is like you, O Lord? Who is like you— majestic in holiness,
awesome in glory, working wonders?
Now, Philip is out in the wilderness with Jesus and the other disciples and whole ton of other people listening to Jesus teach....
5 When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” 6 He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do. 7 Philip answered him, “Eight months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!”