Now Jesus did many other signs... which are not written in this book, but these are written... that by believing you may have life in his name.
The author of Ecclesiastes says: "Of making many books there is no end." (Ecclesiastes 12:12) Perhaps I feel the truth of that when looking along my bookshelves and see several biographies of the same person, several books on the same subject — and ask myself, "Are they all really necessary?" and then here I am writing another one!
The Apostle John had a very clear purpose in writing his book that we know as the Gospel of John. He had selected several particular signs (miracles) which showed clearly the purpose he had in writing the Gospel. He tells us he had many other signs he could have chosen to use, but these, he says, show just what he wanted them to show: "that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name." That is the most important reason anyone could have for writing a book and, of course, John was helped in his writing by the Holy Spirit, so that all he has written is in very truth the word of God.
Now that raises the question: "What do we do with this word that John tells us is so important?" We can't honestly just treat the Bible as a book of interesting stories or as good literature. That's not why John wrote. He wrote so that you and I might believe in Jesus the Son of God and have life in his name.
Gracious Lord, help me to believe in Jesus, the great giver of life. Amen.