Jesus Delivers a Firm Response
Week 36 | Section 49c | Phase 4
Summary: In Jesus’ longest recorded discourse yet, John shares Jesus’ response that cuts to the quick about his identity, mission and the means of salvation. Listeners today would hear His words pierce our vanity, encourage our hearts, and dispel our guilt.
Harmony Bible Radio Archive: https://soundcloud.com/gtroxell/sets/harmony-bible
Today’s Gospel Reading
(There is no record from Matthew, Mark or Luke)
|19 Jesus therefore answered them, “Most certainly, I tell you, the Son can do nothing of himself[a], but what he sees the Father doing. For whatever things he does, these the Son also does likewise. 20 For the Father has affection for the Son, and shows him all things that he himself does. He will show him greater works than these[b], that you may marvel. 21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom he desires[c]. 22 For the Father judges no one, but he has given all judgment to the Son[d],23 that all may honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He who doesn’t honor the Son doesn’t honor the Father who sent him[e]. 24 “Most certainly I tell you, he who hears my word, and believes him who sent me, has eternal life[f], and doesn’t come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.25 Most certainly, I tell you, the hour comes, and now is, when the dead will hear the Son of God’s voice; and those who hear will live[g]. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, even so he gave to the Son also to have life in himself[h]. 27 He also gave him authority to execute judgment, because he is a son of man[i]. 28 Don’t marvel at this, for the hour comes, in which all that are in the tombs will hear his voice, 29 and will come out; those who have done good, to the resurrection of life; and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment. 30 I can of myself do nothing[j]. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is righteous; because I don’t seek my own will, but the will of my Father who sent me. 31 “If I testify about myself, my witness is not valid[k]. 32 It is another who testifies about me. I know that the testimony which he testifies about me is true. 33 You have sent to John[l], and he has testified to the truth.34 But the testimony which I receive is not from man. However, I say these things that you may be saved[m]. 35 He was the burning and shining lamp, and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light[n].36 But the testimony which I have is greater than that of John, for the works which the Father gave me to accomplish, the very works that I do, testify about me, that the Father has sent me.37 The Father himself, who sent me, has testified about me. You have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his form. 38 You don’t have his word living in you; because you don’t believe him whom he sent. 39 “You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and these are they which testify about me. 40 Yet you will not come to me, that you may have life[o]. 41 I don’t receive glory from men. 42 But I know you, that you don’t have God’s love in yourselves[p]. 43 I have come in my Father’s name, and you don’t receive me[q]. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him. 44 How can you believe, who receive glory from one another, and you don’t seek the glory that comes from the only God? 45 “Don’t think that I will accuse you to the Father. There is one who accuses you, even Moses[r], on whom you have set your hope. 46 For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote about me. 47 But if you don’t believe his writings, how will you believe my words?[s]”|
Study Notes and Cross-References:
[a] Only what his father does – Nothing contrary to the Will of God but cooperating with Him and for the eternal purpose of unity by providing redemption and reconciliation. See John 1:1-18; John 3:16; John 14:24
[b] His Jewish audience would be filled with awe at the creation, redeeming of Israel out of Egypt, leading them through the wilderness, bringing them to the land of Canaan; the law, statutes, and ordinances of God – the working of miracles — soon via the Son of God greater things would happen, namely, assurance of redemption and justification by his righteousness, pardon of sins through his blood, and regeneration by the Holy Spirit; and grace through their journey even after conversion.
[c] Life given – perhaps a direct reference to the centurion’s daughter, the paralytic man healed and this one who laid sick – but also spiritually as He is “the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25; HBR-118b) Remember also in week 2 of our study we read of Jesus role in creation (John 1:1-18) and in section 32, 33 we read heard Johns testimony about Jesus as the Word of Life, who gives life.
[d] Judgment – The Jews had an officer in their Sanhedrim, whom they called Ab Beth Din, or “the father of the house of judgment”, who was responsible for moderating of causes brought to him, and of judging and determining them. Compare Song of Solomon 7:4, with Hebrews 1:3; 4:14-16; 8:1-5; 9:11-28; 10:19-22; and then Dan 7:9-27; 8:13,14; 9:24-27; and then Rev 14:6,7; 20:12; 14:12; 22:12.
[e] Honor – Universally it is true that one sent by the authority another regards should be equally honored. Yet tis is difficult if the listener rejected his equality with God, passages such as Isaiah 42:8 and 48:11 prohibited elevating another though when the “Lord God is One” and therefore not another (Phil 2:10-11/Isa 45:23)
[f] The key to salvation – Grace. Yet do not use grace as an excuse to continue in your sin. John 14:15, 23
[g] The means an internal hearing so as to understand it spiritually let it take root and generate a harvest. Salvation is not the goal but a means of testimony of the eternal life God has in store for all humanity reconciled to him by the Son. Hearing, receiving, believing, acting in accordance with God.
[h] From a Jewish perspective it’s God who breathes life into people. Thus there is no other way but by Jesus: I am the way the truth and the life (john 14:6)
[i] Son of man is spoken of in Old Testament prophecy (Daniel 7:13) it is a term that refers to the Messiah, one who was “not a mere man, but the man God’s fellow” (Gill); unique yet equivalent in every way.
[j] See note (a)
[k] Testimony – Among the Jewish people no man was allowed to be his own witness, nor was anything validated by a single witness but by two or three (Deuteronomy 19:15). Yet Jesus did not need this as he was equal to God.
[l] That is John the Baptist to whom the Sanhedrim, who regarded him and his words, sent a deputation of priests a little more than a year prior to determine whether he was the Messiah, or Elias, or that prophet (John 1:21). His response was one they would recall: I am not HE yet he comes (read John 1:19-28) (Read Gill’s notes on this)
[m] Justified behavior – John 3:16-19; 12:46-49
[n] They received for a while the good news of John the Baptist that the messiah was coming, but they could not receive its message (that they were sinful and in need of redemption). Deut 18:15 urged them to listen to the one sent to announce the coming of the Messiah.
[o] There are many today too who lean on understanding and knowledge not faith. The OT points to the Messiah – the need for the redeemer. If you live your whole life as a good person trusting Karma will take care of you, but it takes just one darma for you to end up worm.
[q] One way – John 14:6
[r] That is the Law delivered by Moses – those who have set their hope for redemption on obedience to the law (vs 16) vs the grace of God through Jesus Christ will feel themselves heavily burdened by such a weight – especially when even our righteousness is but filthy rags compared to the Glory of God (Isa 64:6; Luke 16:15; Romans 10:9-10; Gal 5:4-5).
[s] Except that mercy leads us to grace even before we receive it. Then why evangelize (other than the great commission) is that their