Lesson 40: John 8:21-30 – He Did It His Way

by Pastor Ricky Kurth

You're listening to Lesson 40 from the sermon series "The Gospel of John" by Pastor Ricky Kurth. When you're done, explore more sermons from this series.



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.”

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