Bible Basics: What Is That To Thee?

Earl Robertson
Tompkinsville, KY

John records the obtrusive conduct of Peter with Jesus. The lesson is one that needs to be learned by many disciples of the Lord today. But I find it to be one of the most difficult things to get some to accept without question. It was on this occasion that Jesus, for the third time, showed Himself to the disciples after His resurrection (John 21:14). After the conversation Jesus had with them and specifically telling Peter to "feed my sheep," Peter wished to know what the Lord wanted John to do. The Lord responded to Peter, "If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me" (John 21:22).

Peter was too concerned with business that was the Lord's personally. He is told that of which he inquires is none of his business, and what should deeply concern himself is "following" the Lord. To do the will of Christ was his business; however, he seemingly could satisfy himself by putting his nose into the Lord's business and forget all about what really constituted his own responsibility. As long as Peter stayed busy trying to interfere with the Lord's own plan, he had neither the disposition nor time to keep himself walking properly before God. How could he be satisfied so cheaply?

There are always some who like to live like Peter in this respect. Industriously and constructively they are pygmies as compared to those whose business they seek to run. If they knew all they try to obtain without common sense and manners, they would be no better off. This is the lesson which must be learned by all who would serve the Lord profitably. If God's people so live as to have no saving influence, the Savior says they "are good for nothing" (Matt. 5:13).

The matter of trying to run someone else's business is totally contrary to both the spirit and letter of Jesus' teaching. Solomon wrote, "It is an honor for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling" (Prov. 20:3). We are told to "do your own business" (1 Thess. 4:11), and not suffer "as a busybody in other men's matters" (1 Pet. 4:15).

Guardian of Truth XXV: 1, p. 7
January 1, 1981