John 8

Jesus was the Light of the world, the image of the invisible God. Those shall have the light of life who follow Him, being guided away from destroying error and damning sin, and having that enjoyment of God which will be to them the light of spiritual life in this world and life everlasting in the world to come. All who will have God for their Father must discover Him through the Light of the world.

1 Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.

2 And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.

3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,

4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.

5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?

6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.

8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.

9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?

11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

12 ¶ Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

13 The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bearest record of thyself; thy record is not true.

14 Jesus answered and said unto them, Though I bear record of myself, yet my record is true: for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go.

15 Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man.

16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.

17 It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true.

18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.

19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

20 These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come.

21 Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come.

22 Then said the Jews, Will he kill himself? because he saith, Whither I go, ye cannot come.

23 And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.

24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

25 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? And Jesus saith unto them, Even the same that I said unto you from the beginning.

26 I have many things to say and to judge of you: but he that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him.

27 They understood not that he spake to them of the Father.

28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

29 And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.

30 As he spake these words, many believed on him.

31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;

32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

33 ¶ They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?

34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

35 And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever.

36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

37 I know that ye are Abraham’s seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you.

38 I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father.

39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.

40 But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham.

41 Ye do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God.

42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.

43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.

44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.

46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?

47 He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.

50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.

51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.

52 Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death.

53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?

54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:

55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.

56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.

57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?

58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

John 8:1-11 – ​The Accusers Self-condemned

   This passage has been the subject of much controversy, but there is no possibility of accounting for it except on the supposition that this incident really took place. It reveals in our Lord’s character such tenderness, wisdom, hatred of sin, and insight into the heart of man, that it is impossible to suppose that any evangelist could have invented the story.
   The sinner’s way of treating sin is to regard it as “a case” for curious speculation, and an opportunity for contrasting with it the immaculate virtue of the accusers. They take prurient pleasure in enumerating the terrible details, but give no sign of pity or shame for the sinner. The Law’s way of treating sin is to stone. The executioner shows no mercy. The offender falls beneath the Law’s curse and penalty. The Savior’s way of treating sin is to forgive. In that bowed head and hidden face, John 8:10, we learn how much sin costs Him. But it is easy to hear His words of forgiveness, and to go forth from His presence with the assurance that “there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1); but we shall never know how much sin has cost Him, whom it crucifies afresh. That silent, averted gaze has made men bow their heads and beat upon their breasts. —Through the Bible Day by Day

John 8:7 – ​Search thy friend for his virtues, thyself for thy faults.

John 8:12-20 – ​The Twofold Witness

   On either side of the Temple court stood a huge golden candelabrum. On the first and each succeeding night of the week of the Feast of Tabernacles these were lit, and they poured a brilliant flood of light over the Temple and the city. It was to these that our Lord alluded in John 8:12. They were symbolic and intended to recall the pillar of cloud which led the pilgrim march through the desert, and at night disclosed a heart of illuminating lire. Our Lord compared Himself to the manna in John 6, to the smitten rock in John 7, and to the cloud here in John 8:12.
   What the pillar of cloud and fire was to Israel, Jesus will be to His Church and the individual soul. See Exodus 13:21; Numbers 9:15-23. The fire in the cloud was prophetic of His deity enshrined in His humanity. It was this consciousness of the union of the divine and human that enabled our Lord to speak as He did of Himself. There was no egotism or self-assumption in His claim. It was the literal truth. He bare record of Himself, because He could say nothing less, and knew whence He came and whither He went; and the miracles which He wrought in union with the Spirit of God ratified His witness. —Through the Bible Day by Day

John 8:21-30 – ​The Father Made Known in His Son

   Our Lord was absorbed in acquiring glory for His Father. He was sent by the Father, lived by the Father, could do nothing of Himself, and spoke only as the Father taught Him, John 8:28. He could dispense with all human help and stand alone, because the Father never left Him, John 8:29. To honor Him, please Him, work His works, live in His love, was the passion of His life, John 8:29, 49.
   There was a mystery in all this that baffled the men of His age. They were from beneath; they lived for worldly aims, were governed by earthly motives, and sought for the praise of men. His life was spent in fellowship with heaven. But to us there should be no mystery. We, too, should aim to do the will of God as the supreme goal of life. Our aims and ends are too low. The conversion of the unsaved, the upbuilding of the Church, are excellent, but they should be included in the sweep of a wider circle. Aim at the planet and you miss the sun; aim at the sun, and you include the planet. Our one intention should be that God be magnified in our bodies, both in life and death. But for this we must be willing to take up the cross and follow Jesus in His lifting up. —Through the Bible Day by Day

John 8:31-38 – ​The Source of True Liberty

   Sin is not a necessary part of our being. The servant abideth not in the house for ever (John 8:35). Your child is an integral part of the household; he has become one with it. However far he travels, he can never break the link of indissoluble connection. But it is different with a servant, especially under the provisions of the Levitical law. In like manner, a man may have served sin, but, though tightly held, it has no necessary rights over him. The trumpet of Jubilee may sound, and he may go free. It is not freedom to do as we like. Jesus sets us free from the trap and the bird-lime, that is, from the unnatural conditions fastening and confining us from being what God meant us to be. The swallow would not thank you to be freed to live on carrion, but only to mount again into the sunny air.
   Jesus frees us by the truth. The slave-girl will no longer serve in the house of her cruel oppressor, when she learns that the act of emancipation has passed and he has no longer any claim upon her. When we understand that we are accepted and triumphant because of our union with Christ, we begin to exercise our privilege and to draw upon the grace which he has made available. Thus we become free. —Through the Bible Day by Day

John 8:31—If ye continue in my word.

​   1. We shall be approved as Christ’s disciples.—“Then are ye my disciples indeed.” Of some the Master asks, “Why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46). And He drives these from Him, saying (Matthew 7:23), “I never knew you.” His words are the supreme test—the fire which detects the ore; the winnowing-fan that finds out the wheat. Our treatment of our Lord’s words discriminates us: He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, is he that loveth Me.
   2. We shall know the truth.—God teaches us differently from men. They deal in peradventures and surmises; He with certainties—“Ye shall know the truth” (John 8:32). They talk about the truth; He gives us the thing itself, and we know because we possess. They deal with circumstances and externals; He with the heart and root of matters. They give to the mind and soul; He to the spirit. We know the truth, because the Truth is in us, and we are in the Truth. “We know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we know him that is true, and we are in him that is true” (1 John 5:20).
   3. We shall be free.—“The truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). Just as we are free from the terrors which belief in witchcraft and ghosts was wont to breed, because we know that the spirits of the dead do not haunt dark and dangerous places; just as we no longer fear the fatuous light over the marsh, or the death-tick, because science has attributed these to natural causes; so, as Jesus teaches us the truth about God, and the future, and the forgiveness of sins, and the broken power of Satan, and the impotence of death, we are delivered from the bondage of fear, and walk with God in perfect peace. —Our Daily Homily

John 8:39-47 – ​The Test of Sonship

   Godly ancestors and parents will avail nothing, unless we are animated by their spirit and do their works. There were in the old world two families that ran in parallel lines—that of Cain and that of Seth. See Genesis 4-5. The Cainites were citizens of this world; the Sethites were pilgrims of the eternal. The one family finally reached such a pitch of wickedness that they were swept away by the flood, while the other furnished the world with an Enoch that walked with God and a Noah who was perfect in his generation.
   This distinction has continued down the ages, and is not only accentuated by these words of our Lord but by I John 3:12, 15. In Ephesians 2:2, those who walk according to the course of this world are practically walking according to the spirit that works disobedience in men’s lives. It becomes us, then, to see to it that we are not deceived. We may never have plunged into such depth of sin as overwhelmed the men of that generation; and yet if our hearts are steeped in the love of this world, which is passing away, we betray our affinity to evil and not to good, to the devil and not to God, Ephesians 2:2. —Through the Bible Day by Day

John 8:48-59 – ​The Eternal Christ

   It is absolutely true that the Christian disciple does see death as the king of terrors or as a grim monster. Jesus has robbed death of its sting; He has destroyed Him that had the power of death. The moment of death is the moment of birth into a wider and happier existence. We are set free from this body of mortality and become possessed of the house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. The grave is the vestibule of Paradise. We know that the iron gate opens into the city of God. Absent from the body, we are present with the Lord. The moment of transition is so desirable that it is only comparable to the falling asleep of the tired laborer.
   The Father glorified His Son by the attestation given at the Baptism and the Transfiguration, by the Resurrection from the grave, by the Exaltation to His right hand. Yet these are but stages in the glorification of our High Priest. The full outburst of His glory is yet future. We shall behold the glory with which the Father has rewarded His obedience unto death; nay, we are to share it with Him. See John 17:22, 24. Notice the I AM of John 8:58. Compare Exodus 3:14. —Through the Bible Day by Day