New International Reader's Version

John 7

Jesus Goes to the Feast of Booths

1After this, Jesus went around in Galilee. He didn’t want to travel around in Judea. That was because the Jewish leaders there were looking for a way to kill him. The Jewish Feast of Booths was near. Jesus’ brothers said to him, “Leave Galilee and go to Judea. Then your disciples there will see the works that you do. No one who wants to be well known does things in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.” Even Jesus’ own brothers did not believe in him.

So Jesus told them, “The time for me to show who I really am is not here yet. For you, any time would be the right time. The people of the world can’t hate you. But they hate me. This is because I am a witness that their works are evil. You go to the feast. I am not going up to this feast. This is because my time has not yet fully come.” After he said this, he stayed in Galilee.

10 But when his brothers had left for the feast, he went also. But he went secretly, not openly. 11 At the feast the Jewish leaders were watching for Jesus. They were asking, “Where is he?”

12 Many people in the crowd were whispering about him. Some said, “He is a good man.”

Others replied, “No. He fools the people.” 13 But no one would say anything about him openly. They were afraid of the leaders.

Jesus Teaches at the Feast

14 Jesus did nothing until halfway through the feast. Then he went up to the temple courtyard and began to teach. 15 The Jews there were amazed. They asked, “How did this man learn so much without being taught?”

16 Jesus answered, “What I teach is not my own. It comes from the one who sent me. 17 Here is how someone can find out whether my teaching comes from God or from me. That person must choose to do what God wants them to do. 18 Whoever speaks on their own does it to get personal honor. But someone who works for the honor of the one who sent him is truthful. Nothing about him is false. 19 Didn’t Moses give you the law? But not one of you obeys the law. Why are you trying to kill me?”

20 “You are controlled by demons,” the crowd answered. “Who is trying to kill you?”

21 Jesus said to them, “I did one miracle, and you are all amazed. 22 Moses gave you circumcision, and so you circumcise a child on the Sabbath day. But circumcision did not really come from Moses. It came from Abraham. 23 You circumcise a boy on the Sabbath day. You think that if you do, you won’t break the law of Moses. Then why are you angry with me? I healed a man’s entire body on the Sabbath day! 24 Stop judging only by what you see. Judge in the right way.”

People Don’t Agree About Who Jesus Is

25 Then some of the people of Jerusalem began asking questions. They said, “Isn’t this the man some people are trying to kill? 26 Here he is! He is speaking openly. They aren’t saying a word to him. Have the authorities really decided that he is the Messiah? 27 But we know where this man is from. When the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”

28 Jesus was still teaching in the temple courtyard. He cried out, “Yes, you know me. And you know where I am from. I am not here on my own authority. The one who sent me is true. You do not know him. 29 But I know him. I am from him, and he sent me.”

30 When he said this, they tried to arrest him. But no one laid a hand on him. The time for him to show who he really was had not yet come. 31 Still, many people in the crowd believed in him. They said, “How will it be when the Messiah comes? Will he do more signs than this man?”

32 The Pharisees heard the crowd whispering things like this about him. Then the chief priests and the Pharisees sent temple guards to arrest him.

33 Jesus said, “I am with you for only a short time. Then I will go to the one who sent me. 34 You will look for me, but you won’t find me. You can’t come where I am going.”

35 The Jews said to one another, “Where does this man plan to go? Does he think we can’t find him? Will he go where our people live scattered among the Greeks? Will he go there to teach the Greeks? 36 What did he mean when he said, ‘You will look for me, but you won’t find me’? And what did he mean when he said, ‘You can’t come where I am going’?”

37 It was the last and most important day of the feast. Jesus stood up and spoke in a loud voice. He said, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Does anyone believe in me? Then, just as Scripture says, rivers of living water will flow from inside them.” 39 When he said this, he meant the Holy Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus would receive the Spirit later. Up to that time, the Spirit had not been given. This was because Jesus had not yet received glory.

40 The people heard his words. Some of them said, “This man must be the Prophet we’ve been expecting.”

41 Others said, “He is the Messiah.”

Still others asked, “How can the Messiah come from Galilee? 42 Doesn’t Scripture say that the Messiah will come from the family line of David? Doesn’t it say that he will come from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?” 43 So the people did not agree about who Jesus was. 44 Some wanted to arrest him. But no one laid a hand on him.

The Jewish Leaders Do Not Believe

45 Finally the temple guards went back to the chief priests and the Pharisees. They asked the guards, “Why didn’t you bring him in?”

46 “No one ever spoke the way this man does,” the guards replied.

47 “You mean he has fooled you also?” the Pharisees asked. 48 “Have any of the rulers or Pharisees believed in him? 49 No! But this mob knows nothing about the law. There is a curse on them.”

50 Then Nicodemus, a Pharisee, spoke. He was the one who had gone to Jesus earlier. He asked, 51 “Does our law find a man guilty without hearing him first? Doesn’t it want to find out what he is doing?”

52 They replied, “Are you from Galilee too? Look into it. You will find that a prophet does not come out of Galilee.”

53 Then they all went home.