Further Conflict Over Jesus’ Claims

During the Festival of Dedication, in the winter, the Jews ask Jesus to tell them directly in order to provoke others to action. They want Jesus to say that which would give them reason for stone him, “but Jesus said to them, ‘I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?'”

We are reminded that Jesus is the Good Shepherd and the sheep hear his voice, “no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” Although the Jews want the Messiah to come, they want him to come on their terms and on their side. Jesus is obedient to the Father, not man.

And again he escaped their grasp.

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One Reply to “Further Conflict Over Jesus’ Claims”

  1. The Jews are constantly looking for ways to trap Jesus. In this case they ask him to tell them plainly,”Are you the Messiah.”

    Jesus’ response is pretty typical. He tells them that he’s already shown them signs and answered their questions, but they simply can’t hear his voice because they are not his sheep. I’m reminded of John’s discussion about the good Shepherd and how the sheep hear his voice. Reading the Bible every day enhances our hearing so that we can hear the voice of Jesus every day.

    The Jews, of course, don’t really appreciate the words of Jesus here. Instead they pick up stones as they prepare to stone him yet again. They wanted Jesus to fit into their mold, a Messiah that would be on their team. They thought they had all right that they were doing good things–they were blind to their own transgressions. So their expectation was for Jesus to come and support them, to overthrow the government, etc, and become the king that they were remember David to have been: a warrior, musician, strong, kind, powerful.

    Jesus challenges the Jews with this statement,

    do not believe me unless I do works my father. But if I do them even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the father is in me and I in the father.

    Before we throw too many stones at the Jews of Jesus’s day, let’s make sure we look carefully at our own words and actions. Lord help me to hear your voice clearly and do not throw stones. Rather let me be one who does your work in this world let those works speak for themselves.

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