Life Application Study Bible 3rd Edition NLT - Flipbook - Page 39
J ohn 7
esus said, “I chose the twelve of you, but one is a devil.” 71He was speaking of
Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, one of the Twelve, who would later betray him.
2. Jesus encounters conflict with the religious leaders
Jesus’ Brothers Ridicule Him (121)
After this, Jesus traveled around Galilee. He wanted to stay out of Judea, where the
Jewish leaders were plotting his death. 2But soon it was time for the Jewish Festival
of Shelters, 3and Jesus’ brothers said to him, “Leave here and go to Judea, where your
followers can see your miracles! 4You can’t become famous if you hide like this! If you
can do such wonderful things, show yourself to the world!” 5For even his brothers didn’t
believe in him.
6Jesus replied, “Now is not the right time for me to go, but you can go anytime. 7The
world can’t hate you, but it does hate me because I accuse it of doing evil. 8You go on.
I’m not going* to this festival, because my time has not yet come.” 9After saying these
things, Jesus remained in Galilee.
Jesus Teaches Openly at the Temple (123)
10But after his brothers left for the festival, Jesus also went, though secretly, staying out
of public view. 11The Jewish leaders tried to find him at the festival and kept asking if
anyone had seen him. 12There was a lot of grumbling about him among the crowds. Some
argued, “He’s a good man,” but others said, “He’s nothing but a fraud who deceives the
people.” 13But no one had the courage to speak favorably about him in public, for they
were afraid of getting in trouble with the Jewish leaders.
14Then, midway through the festival, Jesus went up to the Temple and began to teach.
15The people* were surprised when they heard him. “How does he know so much when
he hasn’t been trained?” they asked.
16So Jesus told them, “My message is not my own; it comes from God who sent me.
17Anyone who wants to do the will of God will know whether my teaching is from God
or is merely my own. 18Those who speak for themselves want glory only for themselves,
but a person who seeks to honor the one who sent him speaks truth, not lies. 19Moses
gave you the law, but none of you obeys it! In fact, you are trying to kill me.”
7:8 Some manuscripts read not yet going.
7:15 Greek Jewish people.
6:70 In response to Jesus’ message, some people left; others stayed
and truly believed; and some, like Judas, stayed but tried to use Jesus
for a personal agenda. Many people today turn away from Jesus. Others
pretend to follow him, going to church for status, the approval of family
and friends, or business contacts. But only two real responses to Jesus are
available—you either accept him or reject him. How have you responded?
6:71 For more information on Judas, see his profile on page 1699.
7:2 The Festival of Shelters is described in Leviticus 23:33-44. This event
occurred in October, about six months after the Passover celebration
mentioned in John 6:2-5. The festival commemorated the days when the
Israelites wandered in the wilderness and lived in shelters (Leviticus 23:43).
7:3-5 Jesus’ brothers had a difficult time believing in him. Some of
these brothers (James, for example) would eventually become leaders
in the church, but for several years they were embarrassed by him. After
Jesus died and rose again, they finally believed in him. Today we have
every reason to believe in Jesus because we have the full record of his
miracles, death, and resurrection. We also have the evidence of what the
Good News has done in people’s lives through the centuries. Don’t miss
this opportunity to believe in God’s Son.
7:7 Because the world hated Jesus, we who follow him can expect that
many people will oppose us as well. If circumstances are going too well,
ask if you are following Jesus as you should. We can be grateful when
life goes well, but we must not pursue a comfortable life at the cost of
following Jesus halfheartedly or not at all.
7:10 Jesus came with the greatest gift ever offered, so why did he often
act secretly? Was he being deceptive to his brothers (7:6-9)? Perhaps he
meant, “I’m not going until the Father tells me to do so.” The religious
leaders hated him, and many would refuse his gift of salvation no matter what he said or did. The more Jesus taught and worked publicly, the
John 5:18; 7:19;
John 2:4; 7:30; 8:20
John 8:28; 12:49;
John 5:41, 44;
John 1:17; 7:1, 25;
more these leaders would cause trouble for him and his followers. So
Jesus had to teach and work as quietly as possible. Many people today
have the privilege of teaching, preaching, and worshiping publicly with
little persecution, while others face imprisonment, church burnings,
and even death. All believers should be thankful and make the most of
their opportunities to proclaim the Good News, trusting that God will
provide all they need.
7:13 The Jewish religious leaders had a great deal of power over the
common people. Apparently these leaders couldn’t do much to Jesus at
this time, but they threatened anyone who might publicly support him.
One of the reprisals for believing in Jesus was excommunication from
the synagogue (9:22). To a Jew, this was a severe punishment.
7:13 Everyone was talking about Jesus! But when the time came to speak
up for him in public, no one said a word. All were afraid. Fear can stifle
our witness. Although many people talk about Jesus in church, when
it comes to making a public statement about their faith, they are often
embarrassed and remain silent. Jesus says that he will acknowledge us
before God if we acknowledge him before others (Matthew 10:32). Be
courageous! Speak up for Jesus and all he has done for you!
7:16-18 Those who attempt to know God’s will and do it will know
intuitively that Jesus was telling the truth about himself. Have you ever
listened to religious speakers and wondered if they were telling the truth?
Test them: (1) Their words should agree with, not contradict, the Bible;
and (2) their words should point to God and his will, not to themselves.
7:19 The Pharisees spent their days trying to achieve holiness by keeping
the meticulous rules that they had added to God’s laws. Jesus’ accusation
that they didn’t keep Moses’ laws stung them deeply. In spite of their
pompous pride in themselves and their rules, they did not even fulfill a
legalistic religion, for they were living far below what the law of Moses
required. Murder was certainly against the law. Jesus’ followers should