John 12:27-35

Read: John 12:27-35

While the people were busy glorifying Jesus and seeking him out — even some Greeks — Jesus was about the business of bringing glory to the Father. Jesus could have asked to be delivered from the cross to which he was about to go, rather he states that the reason that he came was to glorify the Father — he says it is “this hour”. Jesus had declared that his hour had come in John 12:23, and now he asks the Father to glorify his name. The people around, both Greeks and Jews, witness an audible voice from heaven saying that the Father’s name had been glorified and it would be glorified again. The Father had been glorified numerous times in John already by Jesus (John 9:3, John 11, particularly verses John 11:4 and John 11:40-44). The voice from heaven was spoken at Jesus’ baptism and transfiguration occasions too (Matthew 3:17, Matthew 17:5). Peter recounts the transfiguration in 2 Peter 17:16-18, recalling the glory surrounding Jesus at the time. These particular manifestations of the glory of God and now this one are recalled not to give glory to Jesus, but that Jesus might pass all the fame garnered to him by the works and teachings he had given to the Father, as was the one here too.

Jesus then speaks of himself being lifted up. He had alluded to this in John 3:14 when talking to Nicodemus. The purpose of him being lifted up was so that those who believe in him will live, just as those who looked upon the brazen serpent in the wilderness (Numbers 21:7-9). The judgment that Jesus speaks of is not on people, as he said in John 3:18 that those who do not believe are condemned already, but for what Jesus calls the “prince of this world”. Ephesians 2:1-9 and Acts 26:16-18 suggest that people were once under the dominion of “prince of the power of the air” or “Satan” and were sons of disobedience. The evil which enslaved mankind was about to be destroyed, and Jesus would have to die to do it. The Jews and Greeks did not understand this, as they thought the messiah would be a lasting messiah. Jesus knew that he would rise again from the dead, as he had already demonstrated his power over life by raising Lazarus from the dead. Given this, Jesus knew that God would be glorified again because Jesus was to be raised.

In all things Jesus did, whether in works or speech, Jesus sought to bring glory to the Father. His purpose was indeed to bring about the salvation of man, but piggybacking on that ultimately was God’s glory. Paul exhorts believers to do everything as unto the Lord (Colossians 3:23, Ephesians 6:7). A Christian’s deeds should seek to honor God no matter who the person receiving the deeds are. In all things, the glory of God is at stake and Christians should be mindful of this. God does not take lightly when his name is profaned by what one does because he wants all men to be drawn to him. God glorified Jesus and gave man the task of spreading the gospel to all nations. No one should miss the opportunity to believe because Christians seek sin instead of good, or claim glory for themselves rather than giving it all back to God.

Lord, draw all men yourself and let your name be glorified!