46 And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
46 And Nathanael said to him,
Nathanael questioned the authenticity of Jesus because of the place of His birth.
“Can anything good come out of Nazareth?”
Nazareth held a poor reputation as a city. There was a certain contempt about Nazareth in other cities of Galilee because it was an insignificant and ruddy town. Maybe Nathanael thought Jesus should have come from a major city like Jerusalem, not a rag-tag town like Nazareth. Nazareth was also theologically inconsequential in Scripture. Nathaniel expressed classic doubt and skepticism about Jesus here.
Nathanael’s question was no light quibble about something irrelevant; rather, he had a genuine difficulty, an authentic doubt, about Jesus’ origin. Authentic questions need answers shedding light, not excursions into side issues. Not all questions come from a critical attitude.
Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
Philip knew that, if Nathanael met Jesus personally, his questions would be answered. It took until verse 49 for Nathanael to find out that Jesus was the “Son of God.”
Philip’s response was the same as Christ’s in 1:39: “Come and see.” Philip did not attempt to argue with Nathanael but offered an invitation to see for himself. He had the wisdom not to argue with him. Philip learned from Jesus as to how to appeal to people. Like Jesus, he did not condemn Nathanael but invited him the very same way Jesus did. Neither did he argue with Nathanael but simply invited him to investigate first hand the claims of Christ.
Honest inquiry is the answer for prejudice.
Preconception is always a problem when it comes to Jesus. The best way to allay ourselves of bias is to open our minds to the truth of who He is. Misunderstanding is a big problem in our society. People constantly operate within their own biases. They think they know who and what Jesus is. Generally, men and media skew who Jesus is. They need major revision of their picture of Christ.
It is important not to judge a case before receiving the evidence. We need to operation on first-hand investigation if we are going to truly engage with who and what Jesus is. This is the true condition for discovery and verification. People need to come directly to Jesus in order to see truly who He is.
Some people measure others by themselves. They think others are liars because they are liars. They judge others by their own experiences. Those who share Christ need to understand the way people object to Him. Many hide behind personal quibbles.