The Gospel of John
At the Festival of Tabernacles in Jerusalem
Jesus teaches at the Festival
Divisions over “Who Jesus is”
The Unbelief of the Jewish Leaders

J. Deering,

At the Festival of Tabernacles in Jerusalem
[Translation based on Greek Interlinear]

7:11 Then the Juda-ones (Jewish leadership) sought Him IN the festival, and they said “Where is That One?” 12 There was much murmuring about Him in the Throngs… Some said, “He is good,” yet others “He is misleading the throng.” 13 Yet not one talked boldly talked about Him because of the fear of the Juda-ones.

·         A clear distinction the Jerusalem crowd makes between the people and the “Judea-ones”
·         Greek indicates the time as: IN (during) the festival
·         Some perceived His actions as “Good” but not Godly
·         Some perceived His actions as “Deceiving”
·         All the people cautious about speaking “out loud” because of the Juda-ones


Jesus Teaches at the Festival

14 Yet, at length – [it wasn’t until] mid-festival [that] Jesus up-stepped into the “sacred place” and taught. 15 and the Juda-ones was saying, “How is it that this one is acquainted with The Writings without learning?”


·         Jesus waits till mid-festival to arrive
·         Jerusalem is UP
·         The Temple is spoken of as “the Sacred Place”
·         Jesus first action is to teach
·         Jesus has in-depth knowledge – and he’s not one of them


16 Answered Jesus to them [and said], “My teaching is not from me but of the One sending me. 17 If ever one may be willing to do His will, then that one shall be knowing whether my teaching is of God or from me. 18 The one who speaks of himself is seeking his own glory, yet the one who seeks the glory of the one sending him is true and injustice is not in him. 19 Has not Moses given you the law and not one of you is doing the law; And you are seeking to kill Me?”


·         Jesus is dependent upon His Father – even in teaching the Scriptures
·         Being in God’s will would allow you to see if Jesus’ teaching was from God
·         Teaching in God’s will requires His righteousness
·         Those who teach what they think may not be teaching from God’s will
·         Moses seen as the authority
·         The leadership does not follow Moses (God’s) law
·         Irony – they break the law, and they seek Him to kill


GK: 20 Those around Him answered, “You have a demon – who is seeking to kill you?”


·         Probably equivalent to: “You’re crazy because you think someone is seeking to kill you”
·         Unknown if addressed by leadership or throng
·         If leadership – then a serious accusation – He has a demon
·         If throng – then not a direct threat or attribute


GK: 21 Jesus answered them and said to them, “I did one work [an unrecorded healing] and all of you are marveling.” 22 “Through Moses was given “the cutting” [circumcision], not that it came out of Moses, 23 but on the Father’s Sabbath you are cutting a man [circumcising] so that the Law of Moses may not be annulled; and yet you are sick-to-your-stomachs because I made someone whole on the Sabbath.” 24 “Don’t you be judging by how it looks… but you judge righteously!


·         Comparison being made – What Jesus did VS what the leadership does on the Sabbath
·         One event / healing [making whole] a man = kill Him
·         Many events, cutting a man [dividing], on Sundays per the law
·         Sick-to-your-stomachs lit. bile raising
·         Righteous judgment requires focus on righteousness

Division Over Who Jesus Is

Gk: 25 Then said some of the Jerusalemites, “Is not this one the one they are seeking to kill? 26 And we perceive He is talking with boldness, and yet, not one not one of them [those seeking to kill Him] are saying anything to Him. Do the rulers [those who are seeking to kill Him] truly know that this is truly The Christ? 27 Yet we have perceived this one here now; but the anointed one [Christ], [we’ll know Him] whenever He may be coming, but we don’t know when He is coming,”


·         Jerusalemites – clarification by John
·         Throng acquainted with leadership intention to kill Jesus
·         Throng sees that Jesus is being allowed to speak “with boldness” while the leadership does nothing
·         Throng questions what the leadership knows that they don’t
·         Throng believes they’ll know the Christ when, and if, he comes


Gk: 28 Then Jesus cried out in the Temple, teaching, “You do know me and I know when and where I am. And I have not come of myself but the one sending me is the ‘true one’ whom you are not acquainted. 29 But I know Him, and I am beside Him, and He commissions Me.”


·         Jesus very bold in the Temple – crying out
·         Jesus is teaching in the Temple (Holy Place)
·         Jesus decreeing He is sent from God
·         Jesus decrees those around Him do not know God
·         Jesus states that HE IS BESIDE GOD
·         Jesus states that He has been COMISSIONED by God


GK: 30 Then they sought to arrest Him and yet – not one was able to throw their hands upon Him [epi-ballen] – that His hour had not as yet come. 31 Yet many of the throng believed into Him and they said that the coming anointed one won’t be doing more signs than this one does, will He?


·         THEN the leadership seeks to arrest Jesus
·         No one was able to GRAB Him
·         It is NOT His hour – but there is one coming
·         Many believed Him – but believed what?
·         They said The Coming Anointed One might or might not do more signs


GK: The Pharisees heard the murmuring of the crowd about Him and these things. The Pharisees dispatched the deputies of the chief priests that they should arrest Him.


·         The leadership hears the throng’s comments
·         The leadership sends out deputies of the chief priests
·         Apparently the Pharisees control the chief priests
·         The deputies are sent out to arrest Jesus


GK: 33 Then Jesus said to them [the Jewish leadership], “I have little time left with you, and I am going away back to the One who sends me. 34 You shall be seeking me and me you will not be finding, and where I am you will not be able to come.”


·         Jesus speaks spiritual truth to them and they do not understand
·         Jesus states He is returning to the Father God
·         Jesus states that they will be seeking Him
·         Jesus states that they will not be finding Him
·         Implies that they don’t KNOW the Father or Him so they cannot look to Heaven for Him
·         Implies that the leadership will not be able to ever get to Heaven.


GK: 35 Then the Juda-ones, turning to themselves, said, “Where I this one about to be going that we shall not be finding Him? Not into the dispersed of among the Greeks; Is He about to be going the teaching the Greeks?” 36 “What does He mean by what He has said, that “you shall be seeking me and you shall not be finding; Where I am you are not able to come?”


·         Leadership clueless to what Jesus said
·         They thought he meant returning to the land of the gentiles and hiding there
·         No idea of His home in Heaven
·         No idea of what important truth Jesus has told them


GK: 37 In the last great day of the festival, Jesus had stood and called out, saying, “If anyone is thirsting, come to me and drink.” 38 The one who is believing in Me, as the scripture said, out of His heart living water will flow.” 39 (He said this of the Spirit which those who were believing in Him were about to be getting; but the Holy Spirit was not yet [doing this] as Jesus was not yet glorified).

[Note: The Greeks understood that the figurative center of a person’s emotions was located in the lower chest cavity (the pit of one’s stomach). Our western culture would refer figuratively to the Heart being the center]


·         The Festival comes to an end
·         Perhaps still teaching in the temple
·         Jesus teaching with boldness
·         Apparently part of a larger statement concerning God’s Holy Spirit
·         Exact Scripture quoted not found in this form
·         Each day of feast required a water libation, big event on the last day.
·         Isa 12:3 “with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of Salvation”
·         Jesus offers reality instead of ritual – Come to Me, out of Me, flows the water of the Holy Spirit
·         John notes that The Holy Spirit has not come yet as Jesus has not yet been killed, buried, resurrected, and glorified.


GK: 40 Many out of the throng when hearing this saying, said, “This is truly The Prophet.” 41 Others said, “This is the Christ.” Yet others said, “No for the Christ does not come out of Galilee.”


·         Many thought Jesus was the promised Prophet [Deut 18:15, “a prophet… like unto me”
·         Many said of Him “Truly Christ, truly Messiah”
·         Others – denied because Jesus had come to Jerusalem out of Galilee


GK: 42 “Has not the scripture said that out of the seed of David and from the village of Bethlehem – where David was – comes the Christ?” 43 The throng then became split because of Him. 44 Some were willing to arrest Him; but no one laid their hands on Him.


·         Voiced by “the others”
·         Would be Judean of the family of David
·         Would be born in Bethlehem
·         The Throng became split
·         Some were “Willing” to arrest Him, but no one did


Unbelief of the Jewish Leaders

GK: 45 Then came forward the deputies of the chief priests and Pharisees and said to them, “because of what have you not brought Him?”

·    Inverse sentence structure – The Pharisees stood and the deputies came before them, and the Pharisees said, “For what reason have you not arrested Him and brought Him here.”


GK: 46 The deputies answered, “Never has a man spoken as this man.”

·    “You weren’t there, You didn’t hear Him speak! Nobody has every said the things He has said, and with such authority!”


GK: 47 The Pharisees answered them, “No, you also have been deceived!” 48 “Not any of the chief priests have believed in Him nor the Pharisees.” 49 But the throng, who does not know the law, are cursed!”


·         The Pharisees push their message
·         “You have also been deceived – just as the throng has been, but the throng [is stupid] an does not know the law
·         They have been thrown down - cursed


GK: 50 Nicodemus (the one who came to Jesus at night – is one of them) 51 “Does not our law judge a man ever judge him before knowing what he is doing?”


·         Nicodemus – a member of the Pharisees
·         Apparently a righteous man
·         Brings up the law – as it is written…


GK: 52 They answered and said to him, “Aren’t you also  from Galilee? Search and perceive that out of Galilee no prophet has been raised up.” 53 And each man went to his own home.


·         The Pharisees degrade Nicodemus – implying he’s from the land of the Gentiles too.
·         The Pharisees degrade Nicodemus – no prophets come from Galilee, “why don’t you go and check?”
·         The all left the Temple, the “Fair grounds” of the feast, and went home.


[The earliest manuscripts and many other ancient witnesses do not have John 7:53—8:11. A few manuscripts include these verses, wholly or in part, after John 7:36, John 21:25, Luke 21:38 or Luke 24:53.]