Musings From the Gospel of John – Number 15

The Scriptures covered in this post are from John 6:66 to 7:24

John 6:66-69 NASB

As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.”

In the previous Scriptures, where Jesus spoke of eating His flesh and drinking His blood, one needs to be mindful of how this would have sounded to devout Jews, who were, under the Law, forbidden to consume anything with blood. And I am thinking that it is not unlikely that even the twelve disciples were confused or did not fully comprehend the significance of what Jesus said, at this point in time, because of the limited discussion Jesus had had with them about His death and resurrection. Undoubtedly Jesus knew the confusion this would cause and He also knew that this teaching, at this point in time, would have the effect that it did.

Nevertheless Jesus chose to introduce the reality of what the giving of His body and shed blood would accomplish, at this point in time. Possibly the purpose behind His timing was to help solidify the resolve of the twelve, to steadfastly follow Him, even if they did not thoroughly understand all of which, was yet to unfold. I can’t help but think that this may have present day application, where there are yet some things that we do not yet fully comprehend.

And of course, Simon Peter speaks for us all, when he says, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.

One needs to be mindful that up until this point in time, as recorded in the Gospel of John, the twelve disciples has witnessed five miracles. The changing of water into wine at the wedding at Cana, the healing of the nobleman’s son, the healing of the man at the Bethesda pool in Jerusalem, the feeding of the five thousand and Jesus walking on the water. Thus, the words of truth that Jesus spoke along with the miracles He had performed up to this current point in time, was enough to convince the twelve that Jesus, was indeed, the Messiah.

John 6:70-71 NASB

“Jesus answered them, “Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?” Now He meant Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going to betray Him.”

It’s interesting to note that Jesus doesn’t question their resolve to follow Him, but He does note that one of them would eventually betray Him.

John 7:1-9 NASB

“After these things Jesus was walking in Galilee, for He was unwilling to walk in Judea because the Jews were seeking to kill Him. Now the feast of the Jews, the Feast of Booths, was near. Therefore His brothers said to Him, “Leave here and go into Judea, so that Your disciples also may see Your works which You are doing. For no one does anything in secret when he himself seeks to be known publicly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” For not even His brothers were believing in Him. So Jesus *said to them, My time is not yet here, but your time is always opportune. The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it, that its deeds are evil. Go up to the feast yourselves; I do not go up to this feast because My time has not yet fully come.” Having said these things to them, He stayed in Galilee.”

Matthew 13:55-56 tells us that Jesus had four half brothers. James, Joseph/Joses, Judas/Jude and Simon. At this point in time, none of them, apparently, believed Jesus was who He said He was. Yet, as John records, they were with Jesus as He was walking in Galilee. One can see some sarcasm surface where they say, “If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” Jesus, of course, walks to a timetable as set by His Father and lets them know that His time has not yet fully come.

John 7:10-24 NASB

“But when His brothers had gone up to the feast, then He Himself also went up, not publicly, but as if, in secret. So the Jews were seeking Him at the feast and were saying, “Where is He?” There was much grumbling among the crowds concerning Him; some were saying, “He is a good man”; others were saying, “No, on the contrary, He leads the people astray.” Yet no one was speaking openly of Him for fear of the Jews.

But when it was now the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and began to teach. The Jews then were astonished, saying, “How has this man become learned, having never been educated?” So Jesus answered them and said, My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is of God or whether I speak from Myself. He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who is seeking the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

Notice how Jesus says that what He teaches is not of Himself. Jesus confirms this time and time again, what He says, what He does, comes from the Father. And even though God the Father has given all things unto the Son (John 3:35), there will come a day when Jesus gives everything back to the Father (1st Corinthians 15:28).

The Feast of Tabernacles (Booths) was a seven day feast so this would have been on day four of the Feast and this is the first instance, in the Gospel of John, where it is noted that Jesus teaches in the Temple court.

“Did not Moses give you the Law, and yet none of you carries out the Law? Why do you seek to kill Me?” The crowd answered, “You have a demon! Who seeks to kill You?”Jesus answered them, “I did one deed, and you all marvel. For this reason Moses has given you circumcision (not because it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and on the Sabbath you circumcise a man. If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath so that the Law of Moses will not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made an entire man well on the Sabbath? Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.”

The controversy, with the Jews, had to do with the healing of the crippled man at the pool of Bethesda in Jerusalem, which took place on the Sabbath (John 5:1-9). The criticism levelled against Jesus was that He healed on the Sabbath (breaking the Sabbath) plus making Himself equal with God the Father (John 5:18) . Jesus addresses the criticism of Him breaking the Sabbath. Jesus uses the requirement of circumcision, under the Law, which is performed on the eighth day (even if it is on the Sabbath), as His argument.

Jesus basically says that if I am guilty of healing on the Sabbath, then you also are guilty of circumcising on the Sabbath. If the Jews can act on the Sabbath to circumcise a male in order to make the body whole (or accepted) for membership into the covenant, and those who do so are not judged as being guilty of breaking the Sabbath, why then should I be considered as breaking the Sabbath for making a man whole?

The concluding admonishment that Jesus renders towards the Jews is that they judge according to appearance or outward presumption, and in doing so, judged unjustly (unrighteous), whereas Jesus did not (righteous).

More to follow.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!

 

5 comments

  1. I don’t remember commenting back: Praying for what you mentioned on my blog; pray for an unspoken prayer request concerning issues with someone in my church which I’ll email you sometime next week about

    Like

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