Nathanael (Bartholomew) had a negative attitude toward Jesus before he even met Him, simply because Jesus was from Nazareth (Jn 1:46). In contrast, Jesus had a positive attitude toward Nathanael even before Jesus met him. Jesus did not focus on Nathanael's sins; He called Nathanael "a true Israelite" in whom there was no guile (Jn 1:47). Nathanael responded to Jesus' affirmation of him by affirming Jesus as "the Son of God" and "the King of Israel" (Jn 1:49).
Jesus also "saw right through" Simon, as He "sees right through" each of us. He knew Simon would deny Him three times and commit other sins. However, Jesus also had a positive attitude toward Simon. He called this unstable, sinful person "Rock" ("Peter"). He promised to build His Church on Peter (Mt 16:18). Peter eventually responded by being the first leader of the Church and even a martyr.
Jesus had a positive attitude even toward Judas. He called Judas "friend" when Judas betrayed Him with a kiss (Mt 26:50). However, Judas did not respond favorably to Jesus. Rather, he committed suicide (Mt 27:5).
Right now, Jesus is looking beyond your sins. He is looking at you with love and mercy. Will you respond in faith and repentance?
Prayer: Father, may I see Jesus in others.
Promise: "The wall of the city had twelve courses of stones as its foundation, on which were written the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb." —Rv 21:14
Praise: St. Bartholomew's sarcastic attitude was transformed upon hearing God's prophetic word as spoken through the "King of Israel."
Nihil obstat: Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, March 8, 2000
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 9, 2000
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