Like it or not, Jesus always causes division. It is ironic, but people can talk about god day in and day out without causing too big of a disturbance. But at the moment when Jesus name is mentioned, the response is immediate and visceral. Either you love him or you do not. As the folks listened to him preach, they either were moved by his message to follow, or they were moved to destroy him. Faith requires an affirmative choice to either follow the Lord or not. Such a choice changes people.
The crowds were now seeing that God does not allow the “I’m ok your ok.” Lifestyle. Jesus was calling men to be different. The religious leaders and the world did not want to be different. Therefore his very name, his voice and his message made them deeply bitter. Conversely, those that loved him became hopeful at the very speaking of his name. He represented the picture of God as God intended the world to see him. He showed the world that independence did not mean freedom. Freedom only comes from surrendering to God and following Christ. There were and are only two boxes as it relates to Jesus—Love him or Hate him.
Incidentally, In Philippians 2—God leaves us a clue. In the end, His name is above every name. At the name of Jesus—every knee will bow; in Heaven, on earth and below the earth. Additionally, Every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord-to the glory and praise of God, the Father. Clearly his name divides those that follow him from the rest. Personally, I believe it to be an easy and inevitable choice—follow Him.
God Bless You
still others asked, “How can the Messiah come from Galilee? 42 Does not Scripture say that the Messiah will come from David’s descendants and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?” 43 Thus the people were divided because of Jesus. 44 Some wanted to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him.
45 Finally the temple guards went back to the chief priests and the Pharisees, who asked them, “Why didn’t you bring him in?”
46 “No one ever spoke the way this man does,” the guards replied.
47 “You mean he has deceived you also?” the Pharisees retorted. 48 “Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed in him? 49 No! But this mob that knows nothing of the law—there is a curse on them.”
50 Nicodemus, who had gone to Jesus earlier and who was one of their own number, asked, 51 “Does our law condemn a man without first hearing him to find out what he has been doing?”
52 They replied, “Are you from Galilee, too? Look into it, and you will find that a prophet does not come out of Galilee.”