7:2 Now the Jewish feast of Tabernacles 1 was near. 2
7:27 But we know where this man 3 comes from. 4 Whenever the Christ 5 comes, no one will know where he comes from.” 6
7:28 Then Jesus, while teaching in the temple courts, 7 cried out, 8 “You both know me and know where I come from! 9 And I have not come on my own initiative, 10 but the one who sent me 11 is true. You do not know him, 12 7:29 but 13 I know him, because I have come from him 14 and he 15 sent me.”
7:30 So then they tried to seize Jesus, 16 but no one laid a hand on him, because his time 17 had not yet come. 7:31 Yet many of the crowd 18 believed in him and said, “Whenever the Christ 19 comes, he won’t perform more miraculous signs than this man did, will he?” 20
7:32 The Pharisees 21 heard the crowd 22 murmuring these things about Jesus, 23 so the chief priests and the Pharisees sent officers 24 to arrest him. 25 7:33 Then Jesus said, “I will be with you for only a little while longer, 26 and then 27 I am going to the one who sent me. 7:34 You will look for me 28 but will not find me, and where I am you cannot come.”
7:35 Then the Jewish leaders 29 said to one another, “Where is he 30 going to go that we cannot find him? 31 He is not going to go to the Jewish people dispersed 32 among the Greeks and teach the Greeks, is he? 33 7:36 What did he mean by saying, 34 ‘You will look for me 35 but will not find me, and where I am you cannot come’?”
7:37 On the last day of the feast, the greatest day, 36 Jesus stood up and shouted out, 37 “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me, and 7:38 let the one who believes in me drink. 38 Just as the scripture says, ‘From within him 39 will flow rivers of living water.’” 40 7:39 (Now he said this about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were going to receive, for the Spirit had not yet been given, 41 because Jesus was not yet glorified.) 42
1 tn Or “feast of the Tents” (the feast where people lived in tents or shelters, which was celebrated in the autumn after harvest). John’s use of σκηνοπηγία (skhnophgia) for the feast of Tabernacles constitutes the only use of this term in the New Testament.
2 sn Since the present verse places these incidents at the feast of Tabernacles (
3 tn Grk “this one.”
4 sn We know where this man comes from. The author apparently did not consider this objection worth answering. The true facts about Jesus’ origins were readily available for any reader who didn’t know already. Here is an instance where the author assumes knowledge about Jesus that is independent from the material he records.
5 tn Or “the Messiah” (Both Greek “Christ” and Hebrew and Aramaic “Messiah” mean “one who has been anointed”).
sn See the note on Christ in 1:20.
6 sn The view of these people regarding the Messiah that no one will know where he comes from reflects the idea that the origin of the Messiah is a mystery. In the Talmud (b. Sanhedrin 97a) Rabbi Zera taught: “Three come unawares: Messiah, a found article, and a scorpion.” Apparently OT prophetic passages like Mal 3:1 and Dan 9:25 were interpreted by some as indicating a sudden appearance of Messiah. It appears that this was not a universal view: The scribes summoned by Herod at the coming of the Magi in Matt 2 knew that the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem. It is important to remember that Jewish messianic expectations in the early 1st century were not monolithic.
7 tn Grk “the temple.”
8 tn Grk “Then Jesus cried out in the temple, teaching and saying.”
9 sn You both know me and know where I come from! Jesus’ response while teaching in the temple is difficult – it appears to concede too much understanding to his opponents. It is best to take the words as irony: “So you know me and know where I am from, do you?” On the physical, literal level, they did know where he was from: Nazareth of Galilee (at least they thought they knew). But on another deeper (spiritual) level, they did not: He came from heaven, from the Father. Jesus insisted that he has not come on his own initiative (cf. 5:37), but at the bidding of the Father who sent him.
10 tn Grk “And I have not come from myself.”
11 tn The phrase “the one who sent me” refers to God.
12 tn Grk “the one who sent me is true, whom you do not know.”
13 tn Although the conjunction “but” is not in the Greek text, the contrast is implied (an omitted conjunction is called asyndeton).
14 tn The preposition παρά (para) followed by the genitive has the local sense preserved and can be used of one person sending another. This does not necessarily imply origin in essence or eternal generation.
15 tn Grk “and that one.”
16 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
sn Here the response is on the part of the crowd, who tried to seize Jesus. This is apparently distinct from the attempted arrest by the authorities mentioned in 7:32.
17 tn Grk “his hour.”
18 tn Or “The common people” (as opposed to the religious authorities).
19 tn Or “the Messiah” (Both Greek “Christ” and Hebrew and Aramaic “Messiah” mean “one who has been anointed”).
sn See the note on Christ in 1:20.
20 tn Questions prefaced with μή (mh) in Greek anticipate a negative answer. This can sometimes be indicated by using a “tag” at the end in English (here it is “will he?”).
22 tn Or “The common people” (as opposed to the religious authorities like the Pharisees).
23 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
24 tn Or “servants.” The “chief priests and Pharisees” is a comprehensive term for the groups represented in the ruling council (the Sanhedrin) as in John 7:45; 18:3; Acts 5:22, 26. As “servants” or “officers” of the Sanhedrin their representatives should be distinguished from the Levites serving as temple police (perhaps John 7:30 and 44; also John 8:20; 10:39; 19:6; Acts 4:3). Even when performing “police” duties such as here, their “officers” are doing so only as part of their general tasks (see K. H. Rengstorf, TDNT 8:540).
25 tn Grk “to seize him.” In the context of a deliberate attempt by the servants of the chief priests and Pharisees to detain Jesus, the English verb “arrest” conveys the point more effectively.
26 tn Grk “Yet a little I am with you.”
27 tn The word “then” is not in the Greek text, but is implied.
28 tn Grk “seek me.”
29 tn Or “the Jewish authorities”; Grk “the Jews.” In NT usage the term ᾿Ιουδαῖοι (Ioudaioi) may refer to the entire Jewish people, the residents of Jerusalem and surrounding territory, the authorities in Jerusalem, or merely those who were hostile to Jesus. (For further information see R. G. Bratcher, “‘The Jews’ in the Gospel of John,” BT 26 : 401-9.) Here the phrase is understood to refer to the Jewish authorities or leaders, since the Jewish leaders are mentioned in this context both before and after the present verse (7:32, 45).
30 tn Grk “this one.”
31 tn Grk “will not find him.”
32 sn The Jewish people dispersed (Grk “He is not going to the Diaspora”). The Greek term diaspora (“dispersion”) originally meant those Jews not living in Palestine, but dispersed or scattered among the Gentiles.
33 tn Questions prefaced with μή (mh) in Greek anticipate a negative answer. This can sometimes be indicated by using a “tag” at the end in English (here the tag is “is he?”).
sn Note the Jewish opponents’ misunderstanding of Jesus’ words, as made clear in vv. 35-36. They didn’t realize he spoke of his departure out of the world. This is another example of the author’s use of misunderstanding as a literary device to emphasize a point.
34 tn Grk “What is this word that he said.”
35 tn Grk “seek me.”
36 sn There is a problem with the identification of this reference to the last day of the feast, the greatest day: It appears from Deut 16:13 that the feast went for seven days. Lev 23:36, however, makes it plain that there was an eighth day, though it was mentioned separately from the seven. It is not completely clear whether the seventh or eighth day was the climax of the feast, called here by the author the “last great day of the feast.” Since according to the Mishnah (m. Sukkah 4.1) the ceremonies with water and lights did not continue after the seventh day, it seems more probable that this is the day the author mentions.
37 tn Grk “Jesus stood up and cried out, saying.”
38 tn An alternate way of punctuating the Greek text of vv. 37-38 results in this translation: “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. The one who believes in me, just as the scripture says, ‘From within him will flow rivers of living water.’” John 7:37-38 has been the subject of considerable scholarly debate. Certainly Jesus picks up on the literal water used in the ceremony and uses it figuratively. But what does the figure mean? According to popular understanding, it refers to the coming of the Holy Spirit to dwell in the believer. There is some difficulty in locating an OT text which speaks of rivers of water flowing from within such a person, but Isa 58:11 is often suggested: “The
39 tn Or “out of the innermost part of his person”; Grk “out of his belly.”
41 tn Grk “for the Spirit was not yet.” Although only B and a handful of other NT
42 sn This is a parenthetical note by the author.