Monday, December 12, 2011

John 5:19-27

19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.
22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
23 That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.
24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.
26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

Key Observation:
This section is part of a larger section (v.19-v.45) where Jesus is establishing his deity and co-equality with the Father.


In this section, John gives us three statements of Jesus prefaced by “verily, verily”. Of the four gospels, John is the only one to use this phrase, though the other gospels will preface the remarks of Jesus with one verily. A good synonym for verily would be really or truly. Transliterated from Greek to English it would be amen, amen. Coming from our Savior, it is a signal that what follows we do need to really listen to.

The first verily, verily states that the Son acts as it were, in the shadow of the Father, doing nothing of Himself, but only what the Father directs. Whatever the Father does, so does the Son likewise.

His second verily, verily signals that those who would follow Jesus need to hear Him, and believe God has sent him. If I do that I will in no way be condemned, but will pass from death unto life.

The third verily, verily tells me that the Son will speak to the dead, and will raise those listening for His voice (or those who hear). When our Lord said, “Lazarus, come forth.”, He needed to limit His call to just Lazarus, or all of the dead of all time would have come forth.

In Matthew 28, Jesus claims that all authority in heaven and earth have been given to Him. In this section of John, He clearly is claiming equality with the Father. The Jewish leaders know fully well what He is claiming, and since it is against their law to claim this, they believed it their duty to begin planning for his demise.

Interestingly, it is John who twice brings the plot of the Jewish leaders to the fore. “49And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, 50Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not. 51And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;” John 11:49-51) Again in John 18:14, it says: “14Now Caiaphas was he, which gave counsel to the Jews, that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.” Where did John have his information that others apparently did not have?

I wonder if the answer does not lie in another passage of John: “Because this disciple was known to the High Priest, he went with Jesus into the high priest’s courtyard.” (18:15) I think that somehow John was known of the High Priest, and perhaps he had access to have at least heard the infamous prophecy of the High Priest. What a marvel the apostle John was! He walked in the deepest friendship with our Lord, but also was evidently approved of by the High Priest, and all the while, John does not boast of himself. He does not throw himself forward, is evidently quiet, waits until all the other gospels are written, and then decides that there are things left out which God would have us know in a fourth gospel. So when I read John I get excited because John gives me an inside scoop. In a manner of speaking he is the reporter that has the in depth interview. He just knows things that others were only told. What I like most about John is that He points to his friend Jesus, and asks us to consider: “Is this not the Son of God?” Shouldn’t you and I be believing in His name?

Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus

1. Come, Thou long-expected Jesus,
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee:
Israel's Strength and Consolation,
Hope of all the saints Thou art;
Dear Desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.

2. Born, Thy people to deliver;
Born a child, and yet a King!
Born to reign in us for ever,
Now Thy precious kingdom bring:
By Thine own eternal Spirit,
Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all-suficient merit,
Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

Lyrics: Charles Wesley

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