He was testing Philip, for He already knew what He was going to do (v.6).
Our kids often come home excited to tell us the
interesting things they’ve learned in school. So
when our 9-year-old asked me if I knew how to
balance a book at least an inch high off the counter on
just a sheet of paper, I knew there had to be a logical
explanation though I couldn’t envision it. Taking out a
sheet of notebook paper, he folded it lengthwise several
times, and then, after coiling it, he rested the book on
the folded paper. As I watched, I thought about how far
my ideas had been from the actual solution.
Reading Scripture, I can see I’m not the only one who
deals with limited sight (2 Corinthians 2:7). In an account
of miraculous provision, Philip’s solution was limited to
what he could conceive in his human understanding
(John 6:7). Misunderstanding the purpose of Jesus’
question, Philip didn’t realize that Jesus didn’t need
Philip’s input because He was short on ideas. He wanted
to know the source of Philip’s hope. Like heat applied to
gold, Jesus’ question served to rid Philip of the dross of
self and bring him to a place of dependence on God.
Jesus didn’t expect Philip to meet the need; He expected
him to trust. God was and is more than enough.
When life brings us to those places where the solution
eludes our grasp, we can look around frantically and in
panic cry out to God regarding His injustice in forcing
such a thing on us. Or we have the option to lift our
hands in surrender, stake a claim on what we know God
has done in the past, and rest in the unchanging nature
of His character and love (Psalms 9:10). He can “accomplish infinitely more than”
we can see (Ephesians 3:20).
When a crisis hits, what’s your first reaction? How can you train your mind to see
things in the light of God’s Word rather than through your human eyes?
(2 Corinthians 10:3).