John 1:48-49 Nathanael said to him, "How do you know me?" Jesus answered him, "Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you." Nathanael answered him, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!"
He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you're awake, he knows if you've been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake - it isn't Santa Claus, its Jesus - Jesus really does know you, and what you've been doing. And since that is true, people have come up with a "new" question, something to guide you through life - you should ask - what would Jesus do? And putting WWJD - what would Jesus do - on various things to remind you, or others, has become big business.
Its not a bad idea, there are many times we would not do what we do, if we thought anyone would see us. So many people who look, never think to look up to heaven, to see if Jesus is watching. But the down side to this idea, is that many people have no idea of what Jesus would or would not do - because you don't get the answer from wearing a piece of jewelry, the answer comes from knowing what the Bible says, this is what parents teach their children, this is why they bring them to church and Sunday school, this is why there are confirmation classes - but its not just to know what would Jesus do, but to know the life and salvation that God has given in his Son, our Savior, and knowing this life, to be trained so that we might know how to live it.
There is considerable confusion these days about God and who he is and what he does. Its not hard to figure out why - for how could we know unless we are taught - and so many are not taught, or worse, they are taught things which deaden the conscience, and misunderstand creation. You see, there are 3 ways to know about God, from the existence of the world, from our conscience, and from the Scriptures. But when evolution is taught, people for get about God who created, and when valueless education is taught, consciences are dulled, since they are confused about right and wrong. And this is why we have a life Sunday, to remember that God is the author and giver of life, and that all life is a gift from God. This is why we teach that abortion is wrong - it is not a choice, for we are bought with a price, we are not our own, our bodies are temples of the holy spirit. And should the time come, when a human is cloned, we cannot say that we have created life, for to clone, life is made from life, and in the process many die - that's not creation, that's just sick.
And there is another thing that is sick, although it often appears holy and righteous. It is sick to have law without gospel - and that is usually what the question - what would Jesus do, is - its law without gospel. And not only is it law, but itís a perversion of something out of the bible. If we read Deuteronomy 6:6-8 And these words which I command you this day shall be upon your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. And you shall bind them as a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
It is interesting that when the Israelites when binding the word of God to their hands and on their foreheads, chose passages of scripture that had law and gospel. These things were not just a curb to restrain them from sin, but they were also reminders of the promise. Promise give hope, but the law only gives the knowledge of sin.
So where is the promise, where is the hope? What was it that moved Nathanael - I don't think it was "what would Jesus do" - but if Jesus knows us, and can see when we are hurting, and if when we are hurting, he can send someone to bring us good news, well that can make a real difference. And that is what we find in our text - God sends Philip to Nathanael with good news - that the promised Messiah has come. Philip is a good person to remember, we usually meet him bringing someone to Jesus, sharing the good news, that the Messiah has come. You see, the most remarkable think about our God is not his holiness or righteousness, even though those things are certainly remarkable - the most remarkable thing is his mercy and grace and the love we have come to know through Jesus Christ.