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his teaching as from God. But the Jews, Jesus said, were bad; not one of them (at least, of those to whom he was speaking) kept the law of Moses, in whom they believed (John vii. 19).
But many of the people believed on him because of his miracles, and when the Pharisees and chief priests knew it they sent officers to arrest him. But Jesus said he should not be long there, but should return to him that sent him ; they would search for him, but would not be able to come where he was. But, as usual, they (the Jews) were quite ignorant of his meaning
On the last and great day of the feast, Jesus cried to the people, “If any man thirst, let him come to me and drink,” explaining that those who believed on him would become, according to the Scriptures, fountains of living water. The officers sent to take him returned without having done so, overawed by his teaching; for he spoke, they said, as never before man had spoken. The people, too, many of them, recognized him as a true prophet, and some affirmed him to be the Christ; but to others the fact of his Galilean origin was a stumbling-block, as it was to the Pharisees, who pronounced the believing people cursed for their ignorance.
Jesus continued teaching, going at daybreak to the temple. He told the Pharisees he was "the light of the world.” But they answered that when a man praised himself, his estimate was not to be taken. Jesus told them there was another witness for the fact, viz. the Father who sent him, and two witnesses were enough, as their law acknowledged. Where, then, is your Father? they inquired. To which Jesus replied, “Ye know neither me, nor my Father : if ye knew me, ye would know my Father also” (John viii. 19).
He also announced to them that he was from above, they from beneath, and if they did not believe him to be the Messiah, as he had told them he was from the first, they would die in their sins; but he said, “When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then ye shall know that I am he ” (John viii. 28). The Father, he said, is with me, for I always do what pleases him. These words caused many of the Jews to believe on him. But Jesus is represented as speaking to those who believed on him as if they did not (as he did also at Capernaum). (See John viii. 31-59.)
He told them that, though descended from Abraham, they were slaves of sin, liars, and murderers, true children of their father, the devil, therefore. The Jews then replied, We were right in calling you a Samaritan, and possessed by a devil. Jesus answered that he had not a devil, but that he honoured God, and if any one kept his teaching he would not die while the world lasted. They said, Now we know that you have a devil, for even Abraham is dead, and so are the prophets. But Jesus told them he was living before Abraham. This so exasperated them that they tried to stone him, but he eluded them and
Passing along, he saw a beggar who had been blind from birth, whom he caused to receive sight, having made clay and anointed his eyes, though the Sabbath day. The people who knew him brought him to the Pharisees, who had determined to expel from the synagogue any person who should affirm Jesus to be the Christ, and they questioned the beggar as to how he obtained sight. He replied that Jesus, who was a prophet, had cured him. They would not, however, believe that he had been born blind, but sent for the parents, who, not wishing to commit themselves to any acknowledgment of Jesus, confined themselves to stating the fact that he had been born blind, and professed ignorance of the means by which he now saw, referring them to their son himself for further information. The Pharisees, therefore, again questioned the beggar, and told him to give the glory to God, for Jesus was a sinner and could have had no part in the miracle. But the man insisted it was Jesus who had caused him to see, and that therefore he could not be the sinner they represented him, but a man of God; whereupon they expelled him. But Jesus met him, and asked him if he believed on the Son of God. On his inquiring who the Son of God was, Jesus replied, “ Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that speaketh with thee.' Whereupon the beggar believed and worshipped him.
Jesus, again teaching in the presence of the Pharisees, announced that he was the Good Shepherd, and the door of the sheepfold, through whom the sheep were to go in and out and find pasture. The Father loved him because he was going voluntarily to lay down his life, that he might take it again. His hearers were again divided in their opinions respecting him.
It was now winter, and the Feast of Dedication, and as the Lord was walking about the temple, the Jews came to him, at Solomon's porch, and asked him not to keep them in doubt, but to say plainly whether he was the Christ. Jesus answered that he had already told them he was, and that the miracles he had done also witnessed to the fact; the reason they did not believe was that they were not of the sheep which God had given him, who follow and obey him, and would therefore never perish, for none could pluck them out of his Father's hand, nor out of his hand, for he and his Father were one (John x. 24-30).
Then the Jews tried again to stone him for blasphemy, because, they said, he represented himself as God. But Jesus denied that his words could bear the construction they sought to put on them. If he had applied the title “God” to himself, it would only be in the subordinate sense in which the word has sometimes been used in the Scriptures, as, for example, in the eighty-second Psalm, where the title is given to judges, even unjust ones (see verses 1, 2, 6, 7). God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods. How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked ? ... I have said, ye are gods, and all of you are children of
the Most High. But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.
Now, the Scripture itself, which cannot be broken, calls these men gods, much more, then, would the Messiah, whom God has sanctified and sent into the world, have a claim to the title, in the subordinate sense of having a divine right to rule and judge ; nevertheless, what Jesus did say, as he told them, was only that he was a Son of God, or the Son of God, i.e. the Christ. “If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do them, . . . believe the works; that ye may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father" (John x. 37, 38). Then they again tried to take him, but he escaped.
Then Jesus left Jerusalem and went out of Judea across the Jordan, stopping for some time at the place where John had at first baptized, and many came to him there and believed on him, both because of the miracles he had wrought, and because of John's testimony. While there, word came from Bethany a suburb of Jerusalem, of the illness of Lazarus, who
According to Ewald (translated by Rev. E. Johnson, M.A.), it reads thus :
“God stands in divine assembly,
Judging in the midst of gods.
“I thought ye were gods,
Sons of the Highest, all of ye :
“ Commentary on the Psalms,” vol. ii. p. 142.