NLT Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition - Flipbook - Page 55
J ohn 1 2
27“Now my soul is deeply troubled. Should I pray, ‘Father, save me from this hour’?
But this is the very reason I came! 28Father, bring glory to your name.”
Then a voice spoke from heaven, saying, “I have already brought glory to my name,
and I will do so again.” 29When the crowd heard the voice, some thought it was thunder,
while others declared an angel had spoken to him.
30 Then J
esus told them, “The voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31The time for
judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler of this world, will be cast out. 32And
when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.” 33He said this to
indicate how he was going to die.
34The crowd responded, “We understood from Scripture* that the Messiah would live
forever. How can you say the Son of Man will die? Just who is this Son of Man, anyway?”
35Jesus replied, “My light will shine for you just a little longer. Walk in the light while
you can, so the darkness will not overtake you. Those who walk in the darkness cannot
see where they are going. 36Put your trust in the light while there is still time; then you
will become children of the light.”
After saying these things, Jesus went away and was hidden from them.
Most of the People Do Not Believe in Jesus (186)
37But despite all the miraculous signs J
esus had done, most of the people still did not
believe in him. 38This is exactly what Isaiah the prophet had predicted:
“Lord, who has believed our message?
To whom has the Lord revealed his powerful arm?”*
Matt 3:17; 17:5
Mark 1:11; 9:7
Luke 3:22; 9:35
2 Pet 1:17-18
John 14:30; 16:11
John 3:14; 6:44
Pss 89:4, 36; 110:4
John 8:12; 9:4;
1 Thes 5:5
the people couldn’t believe, for as Isaiah also said,
“The Lord has blinded their eyes
and hardened their hearts—
so that their eyes cannot see,
and their hearts cannot understand,
and they cannot turn to me
and have me heal them.”*
12:34 Greek from the law.
12:38 Isa 53:1. 12:40 Isa 6:10.
12:27 Jesus knew his crucifixion lay ahead, and because he was human,
he dreaded it. He knew he would have to take the sins of the world upon
himself, and he knew this would temporarily separate him in his humanity
from his Father. Being fully human, he wanted to be delivered from this
horrible death, but being fully God, he knew that God the Father had
sent him into the world to die for our sins, in our place. Jesus said no to
his human desires in order to obey his Father and glorify him. Although
we will never have to face such a difficult and awesome task, we are still
called to obedience. Whatever the Father tells us to do, we should do his
will and bring glory to his name.
12:28-30 For the third time in Jesus’ life, God’s voice sounded from
heaven in support of him and his ministry. The first was at Jesus’ baptism:
“This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy” (Matthew 3:13-19).
The second was at the Transfiguration, when God said, “This is my Son,
my Chosen One. Listen to him” (Luke 9:28-36 ). The third is recorded
here: “I have already brought glory to my name, and I will do so again.”
These events would have been strong evidence of Jesus’ divinity to
both Jews and Greeks.
12:31 The ruler of this world is Satan, an angelic being who rebelled
against God. Satan is real, not symbolic, and is constantly working against
God and those who obey him. Satan tempted Eve in the Garden and
persuaded her to sin; he tempted Jesus in the wilderness but did not
persuade him to fall (Matthew 4:1-11). Satan has great power, but people
can be delivered from his reign of spiritual darkness because of Jesus
Christ’s victory on the cross. Although Satan has power, Jesus’ power
is much greater. Jesus’ resurrection shattered Satan’s deathly power
(Colossians 1:13-14). To overcome Satan we need faithful allegiance
to God’s Word, determination to stay away from sin, and the support
of other believers.
12:32-34 The crowd could not believe what Jesus was saying about a
Messiah who would die. They were waving palm branches for a victorious
Messiah who would set up a political, earthly kingdom that would never
end. From their reading of certain Scriptures, they thought the Messiah
would never die (Psalms 89:35-36; 110:4; Isaiah 9:7). Other passages,
however, showed that he would (Isaiah 53:5-9). Jesus’ words did not
mesh with their concept of the Messiah; they were more interested in an
immediate victory over Rome than an eternal victory over evil and death.
First he had to suffer and die—then he would one day set up his eternal
Kingdom. What kind of Messiah, or Savior, are you seeking? Beware of
trying to force Jesus into your own mold. He won’t fit.
12:35-36 Jesus said he would be with them in person for only a short
time, and they should benefit from being in his presence while they had
it. Like a light shining in a dark place, he would point out the way they
should walk. If they walked in his light, they would become “children of
the light,” revealing the truth and pointing people to God. As Christians,
we are to be Christ’s light bearers, letting his light shine through us.
How brightly is your light shining? Can others see Jesus in your actions?
12:37-38 Jesus had performed many miracles, but most people still
didn’t believe in him. Likewise, many today won’t believe despite all God
does. Don’t be discouraged if your witness for Jesus doesn’t turn as many
to him as you’d like. Continue as a faithful witness. You are responsible for
reaching out to others, but they are responsible for their own decisions.
12:39-41 People in Jesus’ time, like those in the time of Isaiah, would
not believe despite the evidence (12:37). As a result, God hardened their
hearts. Does that mean God intentionally prevented these people from
believing in him? No, he simply confirmed their own choices. After a
lifetime of resisting God, they had become so set in their ways that they
wouldn’t even try to understand Jesus’ message. For such people, it is
virtually impossible to come to God—by their own choosing, their hearts
have become permanently set against him. Other instances of hardened
hearts because of constant stubbornness are recorded in Exodus 9:12;
Romans 1:24-28; and 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12.