John 8:12 Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” 13 So the Pharisees said to him, “You are bearing witness about yourself; your testimony is not true.” 14 Jesus answered, “Even if I do bear witness about myself, my testimony is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. 15 You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one. 16 Yet even if I do judge, my judgment is true, for it is not I alone who judge, but I and the Father who sent me. 17 In your Law it is written that the testimony of two people is true. 18 I am the one who bears witness about myself, and the Father who sent me bears witness about me.” 19 They said to him therefore, “Where is your Father?” Jesus answered, “You know neither me nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also.” 20 These words he spoke in the treasury, as he taught in the temple; but no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come. 21 So he said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek me, and you will die in your sin. Where I am going, you cannot come.” 22 So the Jews said, “Will he kill himself, since he says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come’?” 23 He said to them, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”ESV
What is the general theme of the passage?
This is a passage of contrasts: light/darkness, timing/location, testimony/witness, law/authority, and life/death. Jesus purpose is to be the Light that reveals those contrasts are what make the difference between life and death. Jesus can rightly say “I judge no one” only because the Pharisees have already passed sentence on themselves. Their human flaw was being willing to die by their own law rather than accept Jesus as the one God has sent to offer them life.
What does it say about God (or Jesus or the Holy Spirit?)
Jesus spoke openly of the truth that His obedience to His Father would explain all those contrasts. He purposely has chosen this time and this specific place; “I am the one who bears witness about myself, and the Father who sent me bears witness about me.”
What does it say about people?
The choice is simple. If you let the Law be your judge, don’t blame Jesus if you feel judged. An expectant heart will…
Is there truth here for me?
This passage is part of the continuing record of the Feast of Tabernacles. This week is filled with expectant hope that this very week may usher in the reality of the Messianic Kingdom. There is something interesting about Jesus’s choice to speak in the “treasury.” The treasury was the same place he’d confronted the money changers previously. Neither the timing or that location was an accident. It was still the place where people would come to deposit their offerings. It was also one of the most public places in the Temple. Jesus would have access to a lot of people who had come with those expectant hearts. It would also give Him the protection of crowd cover to speak truth in a place where there was an expectation of ceremonial respect. It reminded me of Matthew 6:21 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”