John 9:1-5 – The Eyes of the Blind



When the Jews tried to kill the Lord, He “passed by” them (John 8:59). “And as He passed by, He saw a man which was blind from His birth” (9:1). This was symbolic of the Lord’s ministry to Israel. As the rulers rejected Him, He passed them by, and turned to individuals who wanted His help. He still does this today. If you reject the Savior, He will pass you by and turn to someone who wants to be saved from their sins.

This blind beggar (9:8) was a type of the nation of Israel, spiritually blind and impoverished. If they’d been good, God would make sure they were rich (Deut.28:1-3,12), but since they were bad, they were poor slaves to Rome, and spiritually bankrupt as well (Deut.28:15,16,43,44).

The man was “blind from his birth” (9:1), a type of Israel, spiritually blind from their birth at the Red Sea, where the water broke and gave birth to a nation (Deut.26:5). They showed they were blind from birth immediately after when they clamored in unbelief for food and water. The Lord healed the blind man as a type of Israel’s future restoration.

Even today men wonder if people are afflicted with blindness, etc., because they sinned (John 9:2 cf. Acts 28:1-4 cf. Book of Job). The Jews believed a man could be born blind because of sin because they believed that if a baby could struggle in the womb (Gen.25:21,22), he could sin. Also, the non-inspired Book of Wisdom 8:19, found in the Apocrapha, teaches the pre-existence of the soul, so some Jews no doubt wrongly believed this blind man could have sinned before his birth. (This is one of many proofs that the Apocrapha is not inspired of God). And if they believed that, they may have believed in re-incarnation, and that the man was paying for sins of a past life with his blindness.

They also thought maybe his parents sinned, because of Exodus 20:4,5. God often punished children for their parents’ sins because they were in the loins of their father when they sinned (cf. Heb. 7:9,10). This helps us understand how Adam’s sin condemns us (Romans 5).

The Lord didn’t mean to say the blind man or his parents had never sinned, only that their sin wasn’t the cause of his blindness (John 9:3). Things like blindness and towers falling just happen (Luke 13:1-5). When that tower fell on people at the Indiana state fair earlier this year, it wasn’t a judgment of God. Of course, the Jews were under the Law that said if they were bad, God would punish them, but God specified what punishments He would give, and blindness and falling towers were not specified in Deuteronomy 28.

The Lord said the man was born blind “that the works of God should be made manifest” (John 9:3). The Lord didn’t cause him to be born blind, but allowed it to show His glory. All birth defects are a result of Adam’s sin, and all will allow God to show His glory when He heals them at the Rapture. Imagine how much glory a man would re-ceive for curing just one disease, say cancer. Now imagine how much glory the Lord will receive for healing all!

You say, “But not all will believe, so not all will be healed.” That’s not God’s fault! All this helps answer the philosophical question of why God created man in the first place, knowing he would sin. The answer is, to show His glory when He saves men. Of course, not all men will believe and be saved, but that’s not God’s fault either!

They had torches back then, so why did the Lord say men couldn’t work at night (John 9:4)? Men worked at night in the Bible (IChron.9:33). He was talking about the night of death. Not even the Son of God could do miraculous works when He was dead, according to John 9:4.

Why was the Lord talking about working while it was yet day, working while He was still alive? He was about to heal the blind man on the Sabbath day (9:14), and He knew He would get grief for it, as He always did (9:15ff). So He was explaining that He had to work on the Sabbath, because His time was running out!

The Lord understood He had only one life to do what God sent Him to do. Do you understand that the time you have left to serve the Lord is running out as well?

John 8:48-59 – I Am Not A Samaritan!



The Lord denied having a devil, but didn’t deny being a Samaritan, even though He wasn’t one (John 8:48,49). He didn’t want to offend His Samaritan followers (John 4), so He answered only the charge that really mattered.

In context, the Lord “honored” His Father (8:49) by not sinning (v.46), and in the measure you don’t sin, you too can honor the Father. And if not sinning honors the Father, the way they “dishonored” the Lord must have been by accusing Him of sinning sins like being a glutton, a winebibber, and a blasphemer. Of course, our modern world accuses God of sin all the time. They call natural disasters that kill people “acts of God,” making Him a murderer. Men still dishonor God!

In speaking about being dishonored, it sounds like the Lord was seeking honor, so He declares He wasn’t (v.50). There was “one that seeketh” to honor Him, and that was the Father, who honored Him at His birth with angelic heralds, at His baptism, and would honor Him again when He raised Him from the dead. And the Father was the only one that “judgeth” Him, the only one that counted, anyway. The Jews judged Him a Samaritan with a devil, but the Father’s judgment of Him was the only one that mattered. When people judge you, remember God’s judgment is all that matters, and He has judged you righteous in Christ.

The Lord meant that “if a man keep My saying, he shall never see death” spiritually, but the Jews thought He meant that His followers would never die physically. That’s why they said, “That would make your followers greater than Abraham, since Abraham died” (John 8:52,53). But the Lord hadn’t used the phrase “taste of death” that they misquoted Him as saying. That saying always refers to physical death (Mt.16:28; Heb. 2:9).

Since they thought He was talking crazy talk in speaking about never dying physically, they said, “Now we know that thou hast a devil” (v.52), because being demon possession caused a man to act crazy (Mark 5:5; 9:18,22).

If you honor yourself, your honor means nothing, even if you are the Son of God (John 8:54). And as the Lord pointed out to the Jews, if your God honors something that you don’t honor, what does that say about you? It says you must not be very much like your God!

“Ye have not known Him” (v.55) were fightin’ words! The Gentiles admitted to not knowing God (Acts 17:23), but the Jews boasted about knowing Him (Rom.2:17,18). When He talked about being “a liar like you,” the Lord proved he never read How to Win Friends & Influence People!

How did Abraham see the Lord’s day (John 8:56,57)? Some say because Abraham was alive in Paradise at that time; but that can’t be, since the dead can’t see us (Job 14:21). Some say Abraham saw Christ since He was one of the promises that Abraham “saw” afar off (Heb.11:13) with the eyes of faith (11:1). Some say God gave Abraham a vision of Christ. Genesis doesn’t record this, but Genesis doesn’t record Abraham’s search for New Jerusalem either (Heb.11:10). Some say Melchizedek was a theophany, so when Abraham saw him, he saw Christ (Heb.7:1-3).

Some say Abraham saw Christ in his son Isaac. If Levi could pay tithes in Abraham (Heb.7:9), then Abraham could see Christ in Isaac, just as Simeon saw God’s future salvation in Christ (Luke 2:25-30). Others say Abraham saw Christ as a theophany in Genesis 18:1-3.

Of course, John 8:56 says Abraham saw the Lord’s day. When the Jews asked Him how this could be (v.57), He replied, “Before Abraham was, I am.” He didn’t say, “Before Abraham was, I was.” He used the name of God, (Ex.8:14). Abraham saw the Lord’s day because Abra-ham’s day was the Lord’s day. You see, the Lord is ans-wering their question, “Whom makest thou thyself?” (v.53)

Some say the Lord never claimed to be God, but the Jews were strict adherents to the Law, which didn’t allow them to stone Him just because they didn’t like Him (8:59). The Law only allowed for stoning for blasphemy, which He would be committing if He said He was God and wasn’t.

John 8:36-47 – Unshackled!



The Jews were shackled in bondage to Rome, but even if some conqueror were to set them free, they’d still be slaves to sin (John 8:34). But if the Son would set them free, they would be “free indeed” (v.36).

Men are “lawful captives” to sin (Isa. 49:24), so how could the Lord set them free? If you set a lawful captive free, it makes you a lawbreaker. So how did the Lord lawfully set us free? By dying and paying for our sins! You know His life story, He never committed any jailbreaks. It was in this way He proclaimed liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to them that were bound (Isa.61:1).

The Jews were Abraham’s seed (John 8:37), but they sought to kill the Lord. Why? Because His word found “no place” in them, even though they’d believed on Him (v.30). They didn’t “continue” to believe (v.31), in fact, they soon tried to kill Him (v.59). They were examples of seed that fell on the rock, “which for a while believe” (Luke 8:13), but the seed found “no place” to root in the rock.

People could tell who the Lord’s father was by the things that He said, and they could tell who the father of these Jews were by the things that they did (John 8:38).

Next, the Lord tries to tell them who their father is, but they interrupt Him (v.38,39). He refuses to believe they were Abraham’s children, even though He acknowledged they were his seed (v.37). What’s the difference? We are all the “offspring” or seed of God (Acts 17:28 cf. Luke 3:38), but to be God’s children they had to act like God (Mt.5:44,45), which they weren’t doing. You couldn’t even be a daughter of Abraham’s wife unless you behaved! (IPe.3:6).

But instead of behaving, these Jews were trying to kill Him, so the Lord reminds them Abraham would never kill an innocent man (John 8:40). In saying “ye do the deeds of your father” (v.41), He was again trying to tell them who their father was, but again they cut Him off.

In saying they weren’t born of fornication, they were implying that He was (v.41). Or else they thought He was implying they were idolaters, for idolaters were called children of fornication (Isa. 57:3-5). This would explain why they added, “we have one Father, even God” (John 8:41). But the Lord knew better than to imply that, for the Babylonian captivity had cured Israel of that sin. And He wasn’t about to let them get away with saying their father was God (v.42).

Why couldn’t they hear His word (v.43)? Was it because, as our Calvinist brethren say, they were too dead in sin to hear? No, they couldn’t hear His word because they wouldn’t hear it, just as Joseph’s brethren “couldn’t” speak peaceably to him because they wouldn’t (Gen.37:3,4). So great was their envy and hatred, they couldn’t speak peaceably to him, and so great was the Jews envy and hatred of Him, they couldn’t hear the Lord’s word.

The Lord finally succeeds in telling them who their father is (John 8:44). The devil was not a murderer from the beginning of his creation, for God created him a good angel. He was a murderer from the beginning of the human race, for he killed Adam by enticing him to do something that meant certain death. In addition, George Washington was the father of our country because he was the first president, and Satan was the father of lies because he told the first lie when he told Eve, “thou shalt not surely die.”

The Jews accused the Lord of many things, such as being a winebibber and a glutton and breaking the Sabbath, and blasphemy. Getting a little tired of all these accusations, the Lord challenged them by asking which of them could convince or convict Him of sin (John 8:46).

They certainly couldn’t convict Him of lying, and yet they refused to believe Him (v.46). This was like when He asked them if the baptism of John was from heaven or of men. They didn’t dare say “of men,” for they feared the people, but they couldn’t say “from heaven,” for He’d say, “Why didn’t you then believe him? Here He asked, “If you can’t convict me of lying, why don’t you believe Me?”

John 8:30-35 – An Important Little Word



Under the kingdom program, you could only be one of His disciples “if” you continued in His Word. What was His word? He uses that phrase “my word” in John 5:24, speaking of the gospel. Since the gospel then was “Jesus is the Christ,” that was the word they had to continue to believe to be saved. We see this phrase again when the Lord warned Tribulation saints to keep his word and not deny His name (Rev.3:8). In the Tribulation, Antichrist will claim that he is Christ, and to believe that he’s Christ you’d have to deny Jesus is Christ. If the dispensation of grace hadn’t interrupted the prophetic program, the “believ-ers” in John 8:30 would have entered the Tribulation, so the Lord tells them they must continue in His Word, not us.

Everyone quotes John 8:32, but no one bothers to learn what truth the Lord was saying would set you free! John the Baptist “bare witness unto the truth” (John 5:33), so we know “the truth” is Jesus is the Christ. That’s the truth that set men free. But from what? Most people who tell you that their truth will set you free can’t tell you from what!

The Pharisees thought He meant political freedom, so they claimed they were never in bondage (John 8:33). Seems they forgot about the seven times in the Book of Judges they were in bondage, the 70 years in Babylon, and how they were currently in bondage to Rome! Why would they say something so dumb? Racial pride. The Law stipulated if they were really bad, God would let them be taken captive. So to admit they were often in bondage would be to admit they were often really bad! The Lord responded to this lie by saying “Verily, verily” (8:34), or truly, truly, but doesn’t really call them on their lie. That’s because He wasn’t out to humiliate them, He was out to save them.

In saying that “whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin,” He was telling us the kind of bondage of which He spoke, and this also tells us the kind of freedom He spoke of earlier. Slavery to sin was a recurring theme in the Bible. Ahab sold himself to do evil (only slaves are bought and sold). Notice Ahab sold himself to sin. Too many people blame the devil for their wickedness! Then there was Simon, who was in “the bond of iniquity” (Acts 8:23).

The Lord knew the Jews wouldn’t agree they were slaves to sin, after all, they were the seed of Abraham! So the Lord said that “whosoever” commits sin is the servant of sin (John 8:34). Some say that only those who practice sin are the servants of sin, but the Lord said that whoever commits sin is the slave of sin. That includes all unbelievers.

So what’s the solution to being in bondage to sin? Well, if you are a slave to sin today in the age of grace, you need to believe that form of doctrine that Paul delivered (Romans 6:17). Of course, his doctrine was “Christ died for our sins,” which was different than the form of doctrine you had to believe to be set free from sin in the Lord’s day.

In any house, servants come and go as they are bought and sold and occasionally run away. But all during the time that a master’s servants come and go, his son remains (John 8:35). Ishmael thought he should be Abraham’s heir since he was the firstborn, but God had other ideas (Gen. 21:9-12). The Pharisees were Abraham’s seed (John 8:33), but so was Ishmael! But God said Ishmael had to leave because he was born of a servant, and the time had come for the servant to leave the house! Only Isaac remained, the only son God recognized, and that’s what the Lord was saying to the Pharisees. They may have been Abraham’s seed, but so was Ishmael, and he had to leave. Isaac was the son, so he got to say, and he represented Christ. Only sons could stay in the house.

But what house? Moses was faithful in his house (Heb. 3:5), “the house of Israel,” a phrased used 152 times in Scripture. But that wasn’t his house, he was just a servant. Christ was the son over His own house (Heb.3:6). Christ is the son who gets to stay in the house, and all who believed in Him. As the writer adds, “whose house are we, if we hold fast.” In other words, if they continued in His word. But none of this has anything to do with us. We are not the house of Israel, and we do not have to hold fast or continue in His Word to be saved. Glory!

John 8:21-30 – He Did It His Way



A famous singer sang about doing things “My Way,” but man’s way is nothing to sing about! When the Lord said He was going “my way” (v.21), it was to the cross for us!

The Lord predicted that after He died they would “seek” His body to silence the preaching of His resurrection. Because His enemies would refuse to believe in His resurrection, they would die in their sins. By contrast, believers fall asleep in Jesus! (IThes.4:14).

It is sometimes taught that the sins of unbelievers are forgiven, and the only thing that keeps them out of heaven is the lack of righteousness we get when we believe. However this cannot be, since the Lord says that unbelievers die in their sins.

It is sometimes taught that the word “sins” in John 8:21 should be “sin” singular, as it is in the Greek text, but the Lord quotes His words in Verse 24 and here the Greek text is plural. This means there was no difference in His mind.

Where would the Lord “go” (v.21) when He died? The paradise side of hell, a place He told the Pharisees “ye cannot come,” since when they died in their sins the “great gulf” fixed between them would prevent them from coming to Him (Luke 16:26). This proves there is no second chance of salvation after death, as Mormons and others say.

If you are wondering why the Lord was speaking of dying, it was because they were trying to kill Him (John 8:20). Of course, the Pharisees couldn’t admit that, so they accused Him of thinking of suicide (8:22). This the Lord would not do, of course, as it would violate “thou shalt not kill.” Suicide is not an unpardonable sin, however.

When the Lord told His enemies they were “from beneath,” He didn’t mean they were from hell, which is in the heart of the earth. Seven times “heaven above” is contrasted with “earth beneath” (Ex.20:3,4,etc.). He was just telling them they were “earthy” (ICor.15:47) or worldly.

You had to believe Jesus was the Christ to be saved in that day (John 8:24). If I said I was God, you’d ask “Who do you think you are?,” which is what the Pharisees asked! (8:25). “From the beginning” He had said he was the living water, the living bread, and the light of the world. He gave enough clues so men could believe on Him, but not enough to where His enemies could stone Him for blasphemy.

The Lord said He had much to “judge” of them (8:26). Was He violating Matthew 7:1,2? No, Matthew 7:1,2 just says if you judge you’ll be judged. While that would bother us, it didn’t bother the sinless one. He taught them how to make judgments about people (Mt.7:15-20). Of course, “they understood not” the clear teachings of God in the flesh because they did not know the Book. Yet people think if God Himself taught them they would understand!

John 8:28 came true at Pentecost, when 8,000 men who had yelled “crucify Him” believed on Him when He was lifted up. The day He died the Lord fulfilled prophecy after prophecy (Mt.27:9,12,35,38), and when it got dark when the One who said He was the light of the world was dying, it proved He was Messiah. When the temple veil tore when He died (Mt.27:50,51) revealing that the glory of God was gone (Lev.16:2), and that the temple was as “desolate” as the Lord said it was when He left (Mt.23:37,38), they knew He was Messiah. When dead bodies in Israel rose from the dead with His dead body (Mt.27:52,53), people knew He was the Messiah (Isa.26:19). Especially if they heard Him claim to be “the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25).

The Father never left the Lord “alone” (John 8:29). As a Jew under the Law, God would have left Him had He ever sinned. But since He could say “I do always those things that please Him,” the Father never left Him. How about you? Do you always do the things that please God? If not, how do you know God won’t leave you? Ah, you know “we are not under the law, but under grace” (Rom.6:14,15). So the Spirit that sealed you will never leave (Eph. 4:30).

Nine times in John we read that “many believed” on Him (John 8:30), but not all believed “to the saving of the soul.”

John 8:12-20 – The Light of the World



Some say John 8:1-11 doesn’t belong in the Bible, but something’s missing if you leave it out. The Lord was in the temple (7:28) and the Pharisees weren’t (7:32,45,46). If you omit 8:1-11, they are suddenly together in the temple (8:12,13,20). This is no problem if you leave in 8:1-3.

The Lord claimed to be the “I am” (John 8:12) of Exodus 3:14, specifically the light of the world. Here we have more proof this was written to Jews, for the Lord had the tabernacle candlestick in mind. It was the only source of light in a dark windowless room, just as Christ is the only source of light in a dark world.

A walk through John is like a walk through the tabernacle. First you came to the brazen altar (cf. John 1:29), then you came to the laver (John 3:5; 4:10,14). Then you came to the table of shewbread (John 6:48). After the candlestick came the altar of incense, symbolizing prayer. In John, it symbolized the Lord’s prayer in John 17. Then you came to the ark with the broken law inside, a picture of Christ on the Cross, who became a lawbreaker as He bore our sins. It was covered by the mercy seat upon which blood was sprinkled, and Christ could have mercy on us because He shed His blood. The book of John is a book of symbols!

John was written to Jews, but God always intended to reach “the world” (John 8:12) through Israel (Isa.42:6,7; 49:6). When Israel refused to be God’s channel of blessing, God sent Paul to the Gentiles in spite of Israel under the mystery program.

But the Lord won’t be the world’s light until the kingdom. While here on earth, He was more of a torch, so men had to “follow” Him if they didn’t want to walk in darkness (John 8:12). Israel was used to this kind of light, having followed the pillar of fire at night when it moved in the wilderness. If they didn’t, they walked in darkness! We know the Lord was claiming to be that light too, for they were celebrating the feast that memorialized their time in the wilderness (7:2).

Why does He call Himself “the light of life”? The Pharisees were walking in the light of the Law, which was a ministration of death (IICor.3:7). The Lord was offering a new kind of light, the light of life. The woman taken in adultery walked under the old light and committed adultery. Once the Lord didn’t condemn her (8:11), I doubt she committed adultery again! As Paul taught, the light of the New Covenant was far more glorious! (IICor.3:7-11). Are you walking like someone forgiven of your sins?

In claiming to be the pillar of light, the Lord was claiming to be God (Ex.13:21; 33:9, etc.) Some Pharisees who hadn’t left with the others in 8:9 knew what He meant, and reminded him that without 2 or 3 witnesses His testimony of Himself didn’t count (8:13). But the Lord already had the testimony of the Spirit (Mt.3:16) and the Father (3:17) and John the Baptist, and He is about to call the Father to the witness stand again (John 8:18). Meantime He reminds them that His witness is true (8:14) because knowing where He came from, He knew He was God. They couldn’t tell He was God by looking at Him, though, because they judged after the flesh (8:15). The Lord judged no man (8:15), as He proved when He didn’t condemn the woman taken in adultery. But if He did judge, His judgment would be true, since it would be the Father’s judgment (v.16).

The Father bore witness through the Old Testament prophets, who described Him to a “T” (John 8:17,18). Then the Father bore witness to Him through the miracles He did (cf. Heb.2:3,4; John 14:10). They might discount the Father as one of the 2 or 3 required witnesses, but they shouldn’t. He was more reliable than a human witness (IKi.21:10; Mt.26:20).

The Pharisees knew He was speaking of God the Father, but they played dumb (John 8:19) saying, “You say your dad will testify for you, bring him, we want to cross-examine him.”

People who got saved under the Law knew the Father, and so knew Christ. People who didn’t get saved under the Law didn’t know Christ (John 8:19).

John 8:1-11 – You Wouldn’t Think They’d Be Homeless



Some pretty famous celebrities were homeless at one time or another, including the Lord Jesus. When all others went home (John 7:53), He had no home to which to go (8:1). Luke 21:37 indicates He lived in the Mount of Olives. It is sad because the “every man” who had homes to go to in 7:53 were His enemies (v.45-52). It is even sadder when you realize none of the believers present (v.31,40,41) offered to put Him up for the night, perhaps because they were ashamed to have Him in their home. Is there anything in your life you’d be ashamed to share with the Lord Jesus?

Teaching “early” (8:2) was a tradition among prophets. God spoke early to Israel (Jer.7:13) through the prophets (7:25). There is symbolism here, since the Lord is about to announce He is the light of the world, replacing the sun, which rises early! (cf.Mal.4:2). John is a book of symbols!

John 8:3 is John’s only mention of “scribes,” who are here to help the Pharisees trap Jesus in a question about the Law

Sometimes people just “happen” to get caught in adultery (8:4), but do you think this just “happened” the day they wanted to trap the Lord? It was a setup! She was no doubt guilty, but she was the victim of entrapment. And here’s the trap: they’d heard Him say He hadn’t come to condemn people (John 3:17), but if He said not to condemn & stone her, they could charge Him with advising against the Law.

Symbolically this problem represented the problem of the ages. How could a just God forgive sin, but how could a merciful God condemn it? The Pharisees here represent “the accuser of our brethren” (Rev.12:10), who for 4,000 years screamed at God that sinners like David must pay for their sins. God answered him like the Lord answered the Pharisees—by ignoring him (John 8:6). God knew Christ would pay for the sins of His saints, but couldn’t tell Satan that (cf. ICor.2:7,8).

The Lord “stooped down” (John 8:6) as Jacob predicted He would (Gen.49:9), and as Jacob also predicted, His enemies

were about to learn they were rousing up the wrong lion!

What did the Lord write with His finger (John 8:6)? Well, in time past He wrote the Law with His finger, and so He was probably writing the Law here too. Probably Deuteronomy 22:22, the verse they were quoting to Him. You see, they left out the part about how if a woman is caught in adultery the man must also die. In writing this Law with His finger, He was reminding them that it was futile to try to trap the author of the Law with His own law!

They kept asking Him though (John 8:7) the way Satan kept accusing the brethren. The Lord’s response that the one without sin should cast the first stone was His way of saying, “Yes, she is guilty, but all of you are too!” He was quoting the Law right back to them (Deut.17:6,7). The part He quoted said that the ones who caught her should cast the first stones at her, not come to try to trap Him with their words. He exposed how they weren’t really interested in cleaning up the community, only in trapping Him.

When the Lord wrote with His finger a second time (John 8:8), it reminded them that after Moses broke the tablets, God had to write the commandments again. It is possible that they all left because they had been taking turns committing adultery with her, waiting to spring the trap on the Lord, and so were all guilty of adultery.

Why would the woman stay? Her accusers left, but her conscience bothered her. The Law required 2 or 3 witness-es to condemn her. Her accusers were gone, but she was willing to testify against herself. But she was only one witness. She needed another. Would the Lord witness against her? Surely He who knew the woman in John 4 had 5 husbands knew she was guilty. Would He condemn her?

He could have! Remember, He’d said that “he that is without sin” could cast the first stone, and He was without sin! The words “hath no man condemned thee” and “neither do I condemn thee” (Jo.8:10) remind us of Romans 8:33,34. And what should we do now that we are justified and uncondemned? “Go and sin no more” (John 8:11).

John 7:38-53 – It’s Just a Figure of Speech



Rivers of water coming out of a believer’s belly (7:38) is just a figure of speech! But what does it mean? Well, did you notice the Lord said that living water would come out of the believer’s belly? How’d it get in there? By believing (John 4:10,13,14). This living water was symbolic of eternal life (cf.Isa.12:3). And if gets in a believer by believing, it flows out of a believer when he shares the gospel.

Of course, the gospel didn’t exactly flow from the 12 apostles—until Pentecost! And that’s what the Lord goes on to say He was talking about (John 7:39). Why is the water said to flow from the believer’s belly? The belly is often a Bible name for the womb (cf.Jer.1:5), and just as a womb gives life, when you share the gospel others are born again and they are given eternal life. But this flowing would have to wait until the Lord was “glorified” (7:39) by God when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand (Acts 3:13).

Why would some think the Lord was the Prophet like unto Moses that Moses predicted would come (John 7:40 cf. Deut.18:15)? The Lord just said to come to Him if they thirsted (John 7:37), and when Israel thirsted in the wilderness, they came to Moses! Others thought He was Christ, not knowing that prophet would be Christ (7:41).

Still others doubted Christ could come out of Galilee (v.41), thinking He had to come from Bethlehem (v.42 cf. Micah 5:2), and they didn’t know He was born there. But they could have known Christ could come from Galilee from reading Isaiah (Mt.4:14-16).

There is always a “division” among people when the truth is preached (John 7:43), but that’s okay, the Lord came to cause divisions (Luke 12:51-53). Not intentionally, of course. He just intended to preach the truth, and knew it would divide those who believe it from those who don’t. If everyone likes what you say, you are probably a false prophet (Luke 6:26).

The “officers” the Pharisees sent to take the Lord (John 7:31,32) came back empty handed (7:45), saying no man ever spake like He spake (v.46). Isaiah 53:1,2 indicates they were not impressed by the sound of His words, but by the content of His doctrine. People were just as impressed with His words as they were with His miracles.

The Pharisees perceived the Lord as a threat to their position, so had probably sent the best officers of the best, and were understandably surprised when these good men were “deceived” by the Lord (John 7:47). They point out that none of Israel’s leaders had believed on Him (v.48). Grace believers are familiar with this argument! People ask us, “Do Charles Stanley or John Macarthur believe what you believe? If not, you must be deceived!” Of course, one of the “rulers” had believed on Him (Mt.9:18-26), and one of the Pharisees was considering it (John 3:1,2).

It wasn’t true that the people didn’t know the Law (John 7:49), for some knew He was the prophet Moses predicted, and others knew He was Christ! But even it if were true, this said more about the rulers than the people, for it was the job of the rulers to teach the people!

In John 3, Nicodemus questioned the Lord, here we see him speaking up for Him (7:50,51), and in John 19 we see him boldly standing for Him. After hearing his peers say the people didn’t know the Law, he wisely pointed out that their Law said they couldn’t judge Christ till they had heard Him! If they disagreed, it would show they didn’t know the law! Of course, they showed they didn’t know the Law when they said no prophet would arise out of Galilee (7:52), for Jonah rose out of Galilee (II Kings 14:25).

Every man went to his own home (John 7:53), but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives (8:1) because “the foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay His head” (Mt.8:20). Think about that the next time you crawl into your sleep number bed and fire up the electric blanket!

Berean Searchlight – February 2016

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