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John 12-37 Believe

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Believe

John quotes Isaiah showing that unbelief in Jesus was foretold many years before Jesus. Do you believe in Jesus?

This is a Bible Study. Have your own Bible handy to look up the references mentioned.

If you do not have a Bible, I invite you to go to BibleGateway.com or another online Bible.

John 12:37-50

37-40. Jesus had accomplished many things during the three years of His ministry.

They did not believe in Him! Do You?

“The key word in this section is believe; it is used eight times. First, John explained the unbelief of the people. They would not believe (John 12:37-38, with a quotation form Isaiah 53:1); they could not believe (John 12:39); and they should not believe (John 12:40-41, with a quotation from Isaiah 6:9-10). (Wiersbe, Warren W, The Bible Exposition Commentary New Testament Volume 1 Matthew-Galatians. [Colorado Springs: David C Cook, 2004], 343)

You might want to read that sentence above realizing that it is about the unbelief of the people.

“Because they would not accept Him, there came the day when they could not accept Him. My friend, the most dangerous thing in the world is to hear the gospel and then turn your back on it. If you just go on listening and listening and do not accept it and act upon it, there comes the time when you cannot hear and you cannot see. God is God, and it is He who has the final world.” (McGee, J. Vernon, Thru the Bible: Volume IV: [Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1983], 449)

Problem Is Personal

“The evangelist’s conclusion here could be none other than that the problem was not with Jesus. Then what was the reason for the Jewish failure to believe?” (Borchert, Gerald L., The New American Commentary Volume 25B, John 12-21. [Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2002], 63)

“The explanation was that the unbelief was not only foreseen in Scripture, but necessitated by it.” (MacArthur, John, The MacArthur Bible Commentary. [Nashville, Thomas Nelson Inc., 2005], 1400)

“In verse 38, John quotes Isaiah 53:1 and in verse 40 he quotes Isaiah 6:10 (see Romans 10:16), both of which emphasize the sovereign plan of God in His judicial hardening of Israel (cf. Paul’s argument in Romans 9-11). Although God predestined such judgment, it was not apart from human responsibility and culpability (see 8:24)” (MacArthur, 1400)

Acts 28:27     Matthew 13:14

“When a person starts to resist the light, something begins to change within him, and he comes to the place where he cannot believe. There is a ‘judicial blindness’ that God permits to come over the eyes of people who do not take the truth seriously.” (Wiersbe, 343)

Matthew 13:14-15;    Mark 4:12;    Luke 8:10;    Acts 28:25-27;    Romans 11:8

“It is a serious thing to treat God’s truth lightly for a person could well miss his opportunity to be saved.” (Wiersbe, 343)

41. “This is a reference to Isaiah 6:1. John unambiguously ties Jesus to God or Yahweh of the OT. Therefore, since verse 41 refers to Jesus, it makes Him the author of the judicial hardening of Israel. That fits His roles as Judge (see 5:22-23, 27,30; 9:39). (MacArthur, 1400)

Unbelief of Christians

42-43. “There were those who would not believe, and there were those who would not openly confess Christ even though they had believed. Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea belong to this group initially, but eventually came out openly in this confession of Christ. (John 19:38-42).” (Wiersbe, 343)

“The church has always had people who remain borderline believers, unwilling to confess openly their attachment to Jesus because of all sorts of pressure…The cost of discipleship is often high, and some, like the leaders in this story, remain borderline believers because of fear of exclusion (12:42) or loss of popularity (12:43).” (Borchert, 66)

Contemporary readers of the Gospel should not fail to reflect on the implication of this text for themselves. Believing in Jesus is often very costly.” (Borchert, 66)

44-46. Believing in Jesus also means that you believe in God the Father.

“A number of basic themes in John’s gospel run through this message: God sent the Son; to see the Son means to see the Father; Jesus is the Light of the World; His words are the very words of God; faith in Him brings salvation; to reject Him is to face eternal judgment.” (Wiersbe, 343)

Jesus “will open the eyes of any who are willing to admit that they are blind and that they need the Light of the world.” (McGee, 450)

Jesus Came to Save

47-48. “These verses have a definite negative ring to them and serve as a warning to the reader…What was necessary was ‘keeping’ his words.” (Borchert, 68)

“It is an awesome thought that the unbeliever will face at the judgment every bit of Scripture he has ever read or heard. The very Word that he rejects becomes his judge!” (Wiersbe, 343)

49-50. “The message of Jesus did not originate with him. He was the unique Son of God who was sent by God to provide the world with eternal life (3:16; cf. the purpose statement at 20:31). He did not speak or act on his own (5:19). Like a faithful representative, he acted in conformity to the will of the one who sent him (5:30; 7:16-17).” (Borchert, 69)

“The alert biblical reader should hardly miss the force of the designation ‘commandment,’ not as a basis for legalism but in the best sense of Torah (command) as a principle of life (cf. Deuteronomy 32:46-47).” (Borchert, 70)

Do you want to Believe in Jesus?

References

Amplified Bible (AMP)
Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers, Nashville Tennessee. All rights reserved.

New King James Version (NKJV)
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

In this article Scripture quotations taken from KJV.

Borchert, Gerald L., The New American Commentary Volume 25B, John 12-21. Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2002
McGee, J. Vernon, Thru the Bible: Volume IV: Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1983
MacArthur, John, The MacArthur Bible Commentary. Nashville, Thomas Nelson Inc., 2005
Wiersbe, Warren W, The Bible Exposition Commentary New Testament Volume 1 Matthew-Galatians. Colorado Springs: David C Cook, 2004

Jesus Glorified                                                                                               Washing Feet

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