Thursday 10 April 2014

Bible Book:

“If you knew me, you would know my Father also.” (v. 19)

John 8:12-20 Thursday 10 April 2014


Today's passage should be taken as a continuation of John7:14-44, and is set during the Feast of Tabernacles or Festivalof Booths. Jesus is debating with the Pharisees in the treasury ofthe temple (verse 20) which was next to the Court of Women. It washere that four large lampstands were lit at the end of the firstday of the festival and the light they produced was said toilluminate the whole city. Jesus is therefore comparing himself tothis light, but goes further, for he describes himself as the"light of the world" (v. 12), not just for the city ofJerusalem.

It is no surprise therefore that this assertion triggers heateddebate. Firstly the Pharisees question the basis on which he makeshis case stating that a testimony based on his own views wasinvalid, and Jesus appears to acknowledge this (verse 16). Insteadhe identifies the legally required second witness as "the Fatherwho sent me" (v. 18).

This debate is not just a legal one. Jesus says "I know where Ihave come from and where I am going" (v. 14). He has come from andis going to God and therefore this passage underlines Jesus' divineorigin and destiny. It is something those debating with him haveyet to grasp when they ask "Where is your Father?" (v. 19), as ifhe was expected to produce Joseph of Nazareth as his witness. Thisprovides yet another opportunity for Jesus to underline his pointthat the Pharisees not only don't understand him, but don't evenknow God, as by failing to recognise who Jesus really is they failto see God the Father also.

To Ponder

  • Think of someone who is experiencing darkness in their life andpray that they may experience the "light of life".
  • Read or sing See the Lamb of God (Singing the Faith281) or. Who do you see, hear or love "nailed to a cross" and"calling your name"?
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