November 7, 2007
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After these things Jesus walked in Galilee: for he would not walk in Jewry, because the Jews sought to kill him.
Now the Jews' feast of tabernacles was at hand.
His brethren therefore said unto him, Depart hence, and go into Judaea, that thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest.
For there is no man that doeth any thing in secret, and he himself seeketh to be known openly. If thou do these things, shew thyself to the world.
For neither did his brethren believe in him.
Then Jesus said unto them, My time is not yet come: but your time is alway ready.
The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.
Go ye up unto this feast: I go not up yet unto this feast; for my time is not yet full come.
When he had said these words unto them, he abode still in Galilee.
But when his brethren were gone up, then went he also up unto the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret.
Then the Jews sought him at the feast, and said, Where is he?
And there was much murmuring among the people concerning him: for some said, He is a good man: others said, Nay; but he deceiveth the people.
Howbeit no man spake openly of him for fear of the Jews.
Now about the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and taught.
And the Jews marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?
Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.
If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.
He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.
Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill me?
The people answered and said, Thou hast a devil: who goeth about to kill thee?
Jesus answered and said unto them, I have done one work, and ye all marvel.
Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and ye on the sabbath day circumcise a man.
If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day?
Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
Then said some of them of Jerusalem, Is not this he, whom they seek to kill?
But, lo, he speaketh boldly, and they say nothing unto him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is the very Christ?
Howbeit we know this man whence he is: but when Christ cometh, no man knoweth whence he is.
Then cried Jesus in the temple as he taught, saying, Ye both know me, and ye know whence I am: and I am not come of myself, but he that sent me is true, whom ye know not.
But I know him: for I am from him, and he hath sent me.
Then they sought to take him: but no man laid hands on him, because his hour was not yet come.
And many of the people believed on him, and said, When Christ cometh, will he do more miracles than these which this man hath done?
The Pharisees heard that the people murmured such things concerning him; and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take him.
Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me.
Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come.
Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?
What manner of saying is this that he said, Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come?
In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
(But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet.
Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee?
Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was?
So there was a division among the people because of him.
And some of them would have taken him; but no man laid hands on him.
Then came the officers to the chief priests and Pharisees; and they said unto them, Why have ye not brought him?
The officers answered, Never man spake like this man.
Then answered them the Pharisees, Are ye also deceived?
Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed on him?
But this people who knoweth not the law are cursed.
Nicodemus saith unto them, (he that came to Jesus by night, being one of them,)
Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth?
They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look: for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet.
And every man went unto his own house.
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Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.
And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.
And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bearest record of thyself; thy record is not true.
Jesus answered and said unto them, Though I bear record of myself, yet my record is true: for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go.
Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man.
And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.
It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true.
I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.
Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.
These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come.
Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come.
Then said the Jews, Will he kill himself? because he saith, Whither I go, ye cannot come.
And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.
I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
Then said they unto him, Who art thou? And Jesus saith unto them, Even the same that I said unto you from the beginning.
I have many things to say and to judge of you: but he that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him.
They understood not that he spake to them of the Father.
Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
As he spake these words, many believed on him.
Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.
And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever.
If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you.
I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father.
They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham.
But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham.
Ye do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God.
Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.
Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.
Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.
Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?
Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.
And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.
Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death.
Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?
Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:
Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.
Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.
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Thought for the day:
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The last half of John 8 deals with yet another altercation between Christ and the Jews. Jesus is teaching the believing Jews that in order to be a disciple of His a person needs to continually follow the Word of God. He then tells them that through the Scriptures they will know the truth, and the truth will set them free. Apparently at this point some unbelieving Jews came into the conversation. We know that they are unbelievers because in verse 44 Christ calls them children of the devil. These Jews were offended by the Lord’s remarks, and stated that they had never been in bondage, so they did not need to be set free. There are two problems with this statement. First of all, the Jews, as usual, were thinking in terms of physical bondage while Christ was speaking of spiritual bondage. Second, they were speaking foolishly because they were at that very moment under the bondage of Rome! When people want to avoid the truth of the Bible, they can say some very foolish things. Christ responds by showing them their spiritual bondage to sin. This is important for us to know. The unsaved man is enslaved by sin. He has no choice, and he sins constantly. He needs salvation in order to overcome sin in his life. Jesus is telling them that repentance and faith will free them from the chains of sin that bind them.
In verse 39 the Jews claim to have Abraham for their father. Their problem was that they thought that their Jewish lineage was going to get them into Heaven. Unfortunately there are people today who believe similarly. They think that because their parents were saved, or because they come from a Baptist background, that some how this will get them eternal life. Christ reveals that if they were Abraham’s spiritual children they would believe like Abraham and live like Abraham. Abraham did not want to execute the Messiah but the Jews did. Abraham believed God, but the Jews did not. Thus, they could not be Abraham’s children.
Faced with this truth, the Jews did what many folks do when confronted with an argument that they can not answer: they went on a personal attack. In verse 41 they slander Him by stating that He was born illegitimately. They then say that they believe in Jehovah God as their Father. Christ responds by teaching a great truth:
“If God were your Father, ye would love me”.
Here is something that we need to understand. You can not have God for your Father and reject Jesus Christ. You can not believe God the Father and reject Jesus Christ. A man may say that he believes in God, but if he has not received the Son of God by faith, he has rejected the God of the Bible. Jesus then takes it a step further, and teaches these unbelievers that their real father is Satan himself. Since children resemble their parents, the Lord states that they are murderers and liars just like he is, and because he has no truth in him they reject the Truth of the Scriptures. This is a harsh reality, but it is still true today. Unsaved people are the devil’s children, and they will go to Hell unless they are adopted into God’s family through salvation.
In closing I want to look at a claim that Jesus makes at the end of the chapter. The Jews are already angry, and accuse Jesus of not being as great as Abraham. He answers that Abraham rejoiced when thinking about the coming of Christ, and saw it. The Jews then mock him by asking how He could have seen Abraham when he had been dead for so many centuries. The Lord then makes a claim of Deity,
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” (58).
It would be normal English to say, “Before Abraham was I WAS”, but Christ said, “I AM”. He was using the title that God gave to Himself at the burning bush. He was stating without any doubt that He was the eternal God, and it is clear that the Jews understood that He was claiming Deity, for they wanted to stone Him. Liberal theologians try to teach that Jesus never claimed to be God. This passage shows that they are liars.
Sin binds men, but the eternal God, Jesus Christ can save children of the devil and make them children of the King. Praise God that He has done this for me. Has He done it for you?
Pastor Mark J Montgomery