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Bible Commentaries

Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected Books of the Bible
John 7

 

 

Other Authors
Introduction

Could This Be The Christ?
- John Seven -

John seven is a record of Jesus attending the Feast of Tabernacles. This was a time when He taught the people. The Jewish leaders were seeking to kill Him but His message must go forth. They hated Him because He told them that they were doing evil things. At this time Jesus" own brothers did not believe in Him as the Christ. They were pushing Him to go into Judaea so his disciples could see His works. At that time some were saying, "Jesus is a good man," while others were saying, "He is lying to everyone."

The Jewish leaders were surprised at the power with which Jesus taught sense He lacked formal education. Some called Him Rabbi so they respected Him as teacher. He said, "I am not teaching something that I thought up. What I teach comes from the one who sent me. If you really want to obey God, you will know if what I teach comes from God or from me. If I wanted to bring honor to myself, I would speak for myself. But I want to honor the one who sent me." Jesus said that these seemingly religious people did not obey the law that God gave to Moses and that they sought to kill Him. Jesus had healed a man on the Sabbath and they were so angry at Him that they wanted to kill Him. (John 5:1-47) Jesus showed that they understood that something good could be done on the Sabbath. They would gladly circumcise their sons on the Sabbath. Jesus told them "Do not judge by appearances. Judge by what is right." At first appearance it might seem to be a violation of the Sabbath to heal a man, yet it is right to do works of necessity and mercy. Some wanted to arrest Jesus but no one laid a hand on him because His time had not yet come.

Jesus said, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." The reaction to Jesus was very mixed. Some want to arrest and kill Him. Others said, "He must be the Prophet!" Some said, "He is the Messiah." When some had been sent to arrest Jesus they returned without Him. They said, "No one has ever spoken like that man!" On that occasion Nicodemus was there and he defend Jesus. He said he must have an opportunity to speak for Himself.


Verses 1-24

Jesus attended the feast of Tabernacles -- John 7:1-24 : Jesus kept away from the Jews who were seeking to kill Him by remaining in Galilee. The time came for the Feast of Tabernacles. Jesus quietly attended. This was one of the feasts that Jewish men were expected to attend. (Deuteronomy 16:16) Jesus" brothers wanted Him to go to this feast and publicly prove to the people that He was the Messiah. This is a strange request because they were unbelievers at this time. Jesus said the Jews hated Him because he exposed their sins. Jesus could not and did not compromise with sin. Many were waiting to see Jesus at the Feast and they were watching for Him. There was both discussion and disagreement as people talked about Jesus. Either Jesus is both Lord and Christ or he is a fraud and deceiver. If Jesus is not Lord He could not be a good man. At first the criticism raised against Jesus was that He did not have a formal education. Yet, the people were amazed at His teachings, "Never man spake like this man." Jesus could speak with power because His message came from God and that is all people need to know. The Jews hated Jesus because He had healed a man on the Sabbath. (John 5:1-47) He pointed out that they were not keeping the Law God gave through Moses. They would circumcise a man on the Sabbath because that was the right thing to do. Jesus said, "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment." He wanted it understood that it might appear wrong to heal a man on the Sabbath but healing him was the right thing to do.


Verses 24-36

Is this Jesus the Christ? -- John 7:24-36 : The people wanted to kill Jesus but they said nothing when face to face with Him. He spoke openly and boldly and no one did anything to stop Him. If they could have proved that He was not the Christ they would have stopped him by taking His life. If they thought Jesus was false why did they not silence His teaching? Jesus was rejected as Messiah because He was from Nazareth. They knew the Messiah would come from the city of David, Bethlehem. "Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet. Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee? Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of him." (John 7:40-43) The people really did not know where He was from. He had come from the Father. Jesus" miracles had convinced many people that He was the Messiah. (John 7:31) The Pharisees sent officers to capture Jesus and return Him to them. Jesus predicted that He would soon go away from them to a place where they could not follow. He would return to the one who had sent Him.


Verses 37-39

Drinking living water from Jesus -- John 7:37-39 : "On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and shouted, "If you are thirsty, come to me and drink! Have faith in me, and you will have life-giving water flowing from deep inside you, just as the Scriptures say." Jesus was talking about the Holy Spirit, who would be given to everyone that had faith in him. The Spirit had not yet been given to anyone, since Jesus had not yet been given his full glory." Jesus offers spiritual drink to those who are thirsty for a relationship with God. He is both the Bread of life and the Water of life for those who hunger for an eternity with God. Those who believe in Jesus will have rivers of living water flowing from their hearts. The obedient believer receives the Holy Spirit as a gift. (Acts 2:38) Christians enjoy the fruit of the Spirit that results from this gift. (Galatians 5:22-23) These blessings to the saved would be like a well of living water springing up to meet their spiritual needs.


Verses 40-53

Division over who Jesus is -- John 7:40-53 : There was division over the identify of Jesus. Some said He was a fraud and deceiver. Others said that He was the Prophet or that He was the Christ. He was both the Prophet and the Christ because those prophecies all refer to the same person. These religious leaders could have easily put forth the effort to learn who Jesus was but they did not. Instead they just rejected Him. Some wanted to arrest Jesus but no one laid hands on Him. They did not capture Jesus because of the power with which He spoke. "The officers answered, Never man spake like this man." (John 7:46) No truer statement has ever been spoken! I wonder if even we appreciate the greatness of His teaching. The Jewish leaders wanted to know how many people believed in Jesus. One of the believers was Nicodemus. He said that Jesus deserved a fair hearing and trial before he could be condemned. The Jews responded to Nicodemus by asking if he was also from Galilee. These Jewish leaders stand as evidence that when you do not want to believe in Jesus you can find many excuses as to why Jesus and His church should be rejected. The feast ended and Jesus was not arrested and so everyone went home.

 


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition available at BibleSupport.com. Public Domain.

Bibliography Information
Box, Charles. "Commentary on John 7:4". "Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected books of the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/box/john-7.html. 2014.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, September 16th, 2019
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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