vs 1-5 “After these things Jesus walked in Galilee; for He did not want to walk in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill Him. Now the Jews’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. His brothers therefore said to Him, ‘Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.’ For even His brothers did not believe in Him.”
“He did not want to walk in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill Him”. Why would Jesus be afraid of the Jews? He was the KING! Jesus wasn’t afraid at all. John tells us in vs 6 that Jesus said “My time has not yet come”. He knew they wanted to kill Him, but He also knew the Fathers will and that it wasn’t His time to die yet.
My times are in your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors! ~ Psalm 31:15
“Go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that you are doing . . . If you do these things, show Yourself to the world”
Even though they didn’t quite believe in Jesus as Savior yet, Jesus’ brothers knew that Jesus could do miraculous things! They assumed that He must want to do them on a world stage, showing off. They felt He should go into Jerusalem where the feast crowds would be and really do things up big, put on a real show. Jesus wasn’t here to make Himself into a circus or a big show. That’s how the world thinks. But that’s often not God way of doing things.
In Mark 10:42-45 Jesus tells His disciples “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
God’s way of thinking is completely different than the world’s way. God wants us to humbly serve others, to give our money to the poor, to help other kids in school or people in their job. That is hard! It’s tough to set aside your own life and goals and help someone else in their life. Jesus knew it was the Father’s will for Him to stay in Galilee and minister, serve, and teach the people there.
vs 6-9 “Then Jesus said to them, ‘My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready. The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil. You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.’ When He had said these things to them, He remained in Galilee.”
When Jesus spoke about “my time” He was referring to His time to die on the cross. He knew that He had lots of ministry and teaching left to do before He could be killed. Have you ever heard the phrase “my time to go” or “his tme to go”? This is used with the same idea in mind.
Jesus, like every one of us, had times appointed by God. He had a pre-arranged time be born on this earth, and a specific date and time to die to save the world.
Pastor Greg Laurie writes:
“The time for Jesus’ arrival was just right, according to God’s calendar (Galatians 4:4–5). The Creator of the universe, Almighty God, came to earth in human form. Why did He come? We find the answer recorded in Luke 4.
It was Sabbath day, and Jesus had come into the synagogue, as His custom had been. The attendant in charge of the scroll that particular day gave it to Him to read. Jesus opened the scroll of Isaiah and read:
“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” (Isaiah 61:1–2 NKJV)”
So we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.
~ Romans 12:5-8
Jesus knew exactly what His mission was for His time here as a man.
For each of us, we have an appointed time to be born that we have no control over, and we have a specific date and time that we will die. What we do have some control over is how we spend our days in between birth and death.
vs 10-13 “But when His brothers had gone up, then He also went up to 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 complaining among the people concerning Him. Some said, ‘He is good’; others said, ‘No, on the contrary, He deceives the people.’ However, no one spoke openly of Him for fear of the Jews.
You cannot take a serious look at Jesus without making a decision on what you believe. Jesus was one of three things: He was out of His mind crazy, or an absolute fraud and incredible magician, or He was God. CS Lewis made this argument by saying that Jesus was either “Lunatic, Liar, or Lord”.
vs 14-18 “Now about the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught. And the Jews marveled, saying, ‘How does this Man know letters, having never studied?’ Jesus answered them and said, ‘My doctrine is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone wants to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on My own authority. He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and no unrighteousness is in Him.'”
Why would the Jews be amazed at Jesus’ teaching? Because He was “uneducated”. He was God, He doesn’t need to prove that He went to school X years and studied under Dr. So-and-so. He simply boldly speaks the truth, in love. That’s all that Jesus asks us to do. Speak the truth in love. Teach others and love them.
vs 25-29 “Now some of them from Jerusalem said, ‘Is this not He whom they seek to kill? But look! He speaks boldly, and they say nothing to Him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is truly the Christ? However, we know where this Man is from; but when the Christ comes, no one knows where He is from.’ Then Jesus cried out, as He taught in the temple, saying, ‘You both know Me, and you know where I am from; and I have not come of Myself, but He who sent Me is true, whom you do not know. But I know Him, for I am from Him, and He sent Me.'”
God gave us each an awareness that He exists, and that He created the world, and that His Word is the Truth. Psalm 19 tells us “The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.” You can’t look at the sky and not know in your heart that the is a God. Each of us knows that intuitively as children, even though the world may have now convinced you otherwise. Think back to when you were a child: Was there any doubt in your mind then that Someone created this world we live in? Here, Jesus is saying “You can’t have seen what I do in miracles and heard my teaching and NOT know in your heart that I’m God.”
vs 30-36 “Therefore they sought to take Him; but no one laid a hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come. And many of the people believed in Him, and said, “When the Christ comes, will He do more signs than these which this Man has done?” The Pharisees heard the crowd murmuring these things concerning Him, and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take Him. Then Jesus said to them, “I shall be with you a little while longer, and then I go to Him who sent Me. You will seek Me and not find Me, and where I am you cannot come.” Then the Jews said among themselves, “Where does He intend to go that we shall not find Him? Does He intend to go to the Dispersion among the Greeks and teach the Greeks? What is this thing that He said, ‘You will seek Me and not find Me, and where I am you cannot come’?”
Again, we go back to the fact that “His hour had not yet come”. It wasn’t His time to die. God’s timing is far different from our timing. I am so very impatient, I tend to want it NOW! Or in other circumstances, I don’t want it ever! I have a friend, Jay Erickson, that passed away last year and I continue to mourn his loss. I frequently struggle with my wish that he hadn’t passed away. (Jay wrote and posted an amazing blog about 6 weeks before his passing called “Pondering Death”. It’s worth reading if you’ve not seen it before.)
vs 37-39 “On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.”
Once we’ve been saved by God’s grace and accepted the free gift of salvation from Jesus, we will receive God’s Holy Spirit in our lives. When God’s Word says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”, that strength is given to us by the Holy Spirit who lives in us and gives us boldness when we need it, love for others when we don’t have it, wisdom when we’re really not very smart, and convicts us to repentance when we’ve done wrong. That “Living Water” just flows out of us and out of our lives.
vs 44-49 “Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him. Then the officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, “Why have you not brought Him?” The officers answered, “No man ever spoke like this Man!” Then the Pharisees answered them, “Are you also deceived? Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him? But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed.”
These officers were astonished at Jesus’ teaching, and they were afraid because they realized that He was God. His spoke with authority unlike any man they’d ever seen, and these guys were tough temple police who were used to dealing with other tough guys. They knew they were dealing with someone with authority. They knew intuitively that He is God. Just like we know that Jesus is God today.