The Plot to Kill Jesus

John 11:45-53 Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him. But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done. Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man does many miracles. If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation. And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, You know nothing at all, Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not. And this spoke he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad. Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death. 

 ‘Some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.’ Many believed, but some, perhaps the temple spies, went to report to the rulers. They admitted the miracles, but their hearts were hardened to resist all claims of Jesus on their lives.

They thought that if they did not get rid of Jesus, all men will believe in Him and make Him king. They feared that the Romans will come against the Jews to destroy the nation and take the temple from them. [Which came to past – Job 3:25] In the law the priests were in office for life, but here it was an annual term; the Romans and Herod chose whom they pleased for this office. According to Josephus (Antiquities 18:4:3), Joseph was his name and Caiaphas his surname.

‘Expedient for us, that one man should die for the people’ Caiaphas prophesied that it was in their interest that Jesus should die in the place of the whole nation. God seemingly used the ungodly high priest as He used Balaam in Num. 22:38.

‘One’ referring to the Jews of the dispersion, this will be fulfilled at the second coming (Matt. 24:31; Isa. 11:11-12; Eze. 37:1-28). ‘Together for to put him to death’ At other times they had plotted His death, but the council had been divided. God used the divisions to give time for the teaching, example, and miracles of Jesus to do their work.

Jesus Made Clay

John 9:6-16 When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing. The neighbours therefore, and they which before had seen him that he was blind, said, Is not this he that sat and begged? Some said, This is he: others said, He is like him: but he said, I am he. Therefore said they unto him, How were thine eyes opened? He answered and said, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight. Then said they unto him, Where is he? He said, I know not. They brought to the Pharisees him that aforetime was blind. And it was the sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes. Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see. Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them. 

‘He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay’ Jesus illustrates that sin causes blindness (2 Pet. 1:9; 2:22).

‘Pool of Siloam’ this pool was made by Hezekiah (2Ki. 20:20); the Greek word for pool is kolumbethra which means a swimming pool or a place for diving (John 5:2, 4, 7; 9:7).

The blind man’s neighbours and others which had seen him that he was blind before, asked: ‘Is not this he that sat and begged?’ and ‘How were thine eyes opened?’

He answered and said that Jesus made clay, anointed his eyes, and told him to go to the pool of Siloam. He went and washed and received his sight.

‘And it was the sabbath day’ this made it the unpardonable sin as far as the hypocrites were concerned. Nothing good was to be done on this day except for material gain. One could take a beast out of the ditch, but not save a man from death, hell and the grave. Such utter senselessness exists even to this day in religion in many respects! Is it any wonder that sensible men reject outward forms, rituals, and teachings that have no practical and beneficial value at all!

Did keeping the sabbath help the Pharisees or prove they were of God? No more than in many cases today where men maintain some mere outward show of religion before others. Would they perform consistently the same things in private if no one was in the grandstand?

Some of the Pharisees accused Jesus of not being of God because He didn’t keep the sabbath day. Others didn’t agree and asked how can a sinner do such miracles?  The question that should have been asked was why could the Pharisees not heal the blind if they were of God more than Jesus was?

I am the Light of the World

John 8:12-20 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that follow me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bear record of thyself; thy record is not true. 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 you cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go. You judge after the flesh; I judge no man. And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me. It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me bear witness of me. Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, You neither know me, nor my Father: if you had known me, you should have known my Father also. 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. 

‘Then spake Jesus again unto them’ this statement proves that Jesus had been speaking to the Jews but was interrupted by the scribes and Pharisees who brought the woman to Him. ‘I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life’ The Jews added a ninth day to the feast on which they lit a lamp, putting it in the chest instead of the sacred books to illustrate Proverbs 6:23 and Psalm 119:105. Christ could have alluded to this, as well as to scriptures referring to the Messiah as a light from Isaiah 9:2; 49:6 and 60:1.

The Pharisees accused Jesus of testifying of Himself and made Him off as a liar. Jesus answered them by saying that He did bear record of Himself and that it was the truth because He knew where He came from and where He was going. He accused them of judging after the flesh; but that He didn’t and when He did judge, His judgement was true because He was not the only judge, but also the Father who has sent Him (Acts 17:32; Rom. 2:16).

It is also written in the Law (also called the Pentateuch or five books of Moses) that the testimony of two men is true. See Deuteronomy 17:6; 19:15 and 2 Corinthians 13:1. Jesus counted Himself as one witness and His Father as another.

‘Where is thy Father?’ If they truly knew Jesus, they would have known His Father. They really did not know Him as they claimed. A person cannot know one or the other without knowing both, for no man can come to Christ unless he is drawn by the Father (John 6:37, 39, 44). Eternal life is to know both (John 17:2-3; 1Jn. 5:20).

Jesus taught in the treasury many times (Mark 12:41; Luke 21:1; John 8:20). It was in the court of women. It had 13 chests, the 13th one for the women to put their offerings in. The other 12, which had the names of the 12 sons of Jacob on them, were for the men’s offerings.

‘For his hour was not yet come’ – they laid no hands on Him because they were powerless to arrest Him, not being permitted by God.

Being Convicted

John 8:3-11 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what say thou? 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. 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. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 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. 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? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. 

The scribes and Pharisees attempted, yet again, to snare Jesus to arrest Him by bringing a woman that was taken in adultery. Had He contradicted Moses (Lev. 20:10; Deut. 22:22-24), He would have been condemned as a false prophet. Had He condemned the woman to death He would have been accused to the Romans as usurping authority, so He merely wrote on the ground as if He did not hear them. When they continued to ask, He told them that the sinless ones should first cast a stone. It is not recorded what He wrote on the ground.

Capital punishment by stoning was lawful (Ex. 19:13; Deut. 13:10; 17:5; 22:21). The Jewish method of execution was to cast the criminal from a 10 or 12 feet scaffold half-naked, with hands tied in the back. The witnesses did the pushing with great force and if this did not kill him a witness then would take a large stone and dash it upon the breast. On occasions where mobs stoned a man no scaffold was used, but certain accusers threw the first stones and then all could throw until the victim was dead (Num. 15:36; Jos. 7:25; 1Kings 21:13; Acts 7:58-59; 14:19; 2Cor. 11:25).

Conscience is a wonderful thing. It is the faculty that decides the lawfulness of our actions as to right and wrong (Rom. 2:12-16). The causes of their conviction was their own evil designs against Him, not so much against her; their failure to include the man who was guilty with the woman; what Christ wrote on the ground; the challenge to start throwing if they were sinless themselves; their hypocrisy which was known to Christ and others present; and their guilt of committing the same sin (Rom. 2:1).

As they were convicted by their own consciences, they, her accusers, started to depart, leaving the woman in the midst of the disciples and others who were present.

Jesus did not say He did not condemn adultery as a sin. He simply forgave the woman, as He had done others who were sinful (Matt. 9:1-8; Luke 7:37-50). He was not a magistrate and since no man of her accusers stayed to condemn, He was not going to pass sentence on the woman, taking it upon Himself to execute the law of Moses. He had to avoid the Jews accusing Him of taking magisterial authority in His own hands. Then, too, Christ came to save men, not to destroy them, so forgiveness of her sin was as much His obligation then as it still is when anyone repents and turns from sin (Matt. 12:31-32; 1Jn. 1:9). He frankly told her to sin no more, proving He did condemn adultery as a sin. He did so elsewhere (Matt. 5:27-32; 19:9, 18-19).

Division Among the People

John 7:40-53 Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, of a truth this is the Prophet. Others said, this is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee? Hath not the scripture said that Christ come of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of him. And some of them would have taken him; but no man laid hands on him. Then came the officers to the chief priests and Pharisees; and they said unto them, Why have you not brought him? The officers answered, Never man spoke like this man. Then answered them the Pharisees, Are you also deceived? Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed on him? But this people who know not the law are cursed. Nicodemus said unto them, (he that came to Jesus by night, being one of them,) Do our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he does? They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search and look: for out of Galilee arise no prophet. And every man went unto his own house. 

There was division amongst the people whether Jesus was a Prophet or the Christ. The fourth Old Testament prophecy was fulfilled with Christ being born in Bethlehem and of David’s seed (Isa. 11:1, 10; Jer. 23:5; Mic. 5:1-2).

They laid no hands on Him because they were powerless to arrest Him, not being permitted by God.

The chief priests and Pharisees asked the officers if they were also deceived by Jesus because none of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed in Him. Rulers believing a thing or not, does not prove it to be right or wrong. This is a standard held too long now by too many people. Many rulers did believe in Him (John 12:42; 19:38-39). They also stated that the people did not know the law and were therefore cursed. Neither knowing the law nor keeping it saves the soul. The law only condemns and makes guilty (Rom. 3:9-23; 7:7-25; 1Jn. 3:4).

Nicodemus, who was a Pharisee as well as a disciple of Christ, stated that their law doesn’t judge anyone before hearing him and know what he knows.

The chief priests and Pharisees stated ignorance of facts that some claimed to know in John 7:27, that when the Messiah would be born He would hide Himself and that when He appeared no man would know from where He had come. Christ was not born in Galilee, but in Bethlehem (Matt. 2:1-23; Luke 2:1-52). If they had searched they would have found that Jonah, Hosea, Elijah, Elisha, and others were from the Northern kingdom and not from Judea.

Where I Am

John 7:32-36 The Pharisees heard that the people murmured such things concerning him; and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take him. Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me. You shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither you cannot come. Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles? What manner of saying is this that he said, You shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither you cannot come? 

The Pharisees heard that the people murmured about Jesus being the Christ and they and the chief priests sent officers to arrest Him. Jesus responded by giving the nineteenth New Testament prophecy which was fulfilled: that He will be with them only a little longer – He was crucified 7 months later at the next Passover when He becomes the Passover lamb for all men – and then He went back to the Father at the ascension. They shall seek Him, and not find Him was a prophetic reference to the nation seeking a deliverer in vain when the Romans would come and destroy their city in 70 AD.

And where He will be (in Heaven), they cannot come. One must meet certain conditions to go up to where He now is. If one is cut off in his sins he will never be able to go there, but if one is saved from them he will go there at death or after the rapture (2Cor. 5:8; Php. 1:21-24; Heb. 12:23; Rev. 6:9-11).

The Jews thought that Jesus would go someplace else on earth and teach other nations (Gentiles simply means non-Israelites nations).  They did not comprehend that He would die for them and return to Heaven.

Judge Righteous Judgment

John 7:19-24 Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keep the law? Why go you about to kill me? The people answered and said, Thou hast a devil: who go about to kill thee? Jesus answered and said unto them, I have done one work, and you all marvel. Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and you on the sabbath day circumcise a man. If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are you angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day? Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment. 

Moses gave the nation of Israel the Law as he received it from God, and the whole summary of the Law (Matt. 22:37-40) was to love God, serve AND obey Him (Deut. 6:5; 7:9; 10:12; 11:1, 13).  Jesus accused the Pharisees of violating the very law they professed to respect and obey, they only kept up the Law for outward appearance that would produce the praise of men and produce followers for their religion (Matt. 23).

Many strangers (people) at the feast were ignorant of the plots of the Pharisees to killed Jesus, so they were astonished at His announcement that they seek Him to kill Him.

This ‘one work’ from verse 21 was the healing of the man on the sabbath (John 7:23; 5:1-16). The Pharisees accused Him of breaking the law and, in the interest of religion, thought He should be killed. He replied that they did more work on the sabbath in circumcising a boy than He did in healing a man, so who was the greater sinner?

The law concerning circumcision was given to Abraham (Gen. 17:9-14); Moses only mentioned the law in Exodus 12:44, 48 and Leviticus 12:3.

‘Judge not according to the appearance’ – Jesus answered those who tried to kill Him for obeying His Father that the covenant of healing (Ex. 15:26) should be obeyed as much as the covenant of circumcision (Gen. 17:9-14); that sickness in their midst proved that they had broken God’s covenant.

Receiving Jesus

John 4:40-45 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. And many more believed because of his own word; And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world. Now after two days he departed thence, and went into Galilee. For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country. Then when he was come into Galilee, the Galilaeans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast: for they also went unto the feast. 

‘He abode there two days’ – This is another of many customs of the Jews that was broken by Jesus. Talking to the woman itself was breaking rabbinical law, and having fellowship with Samaritans for two days would have been unpardonable in the eyes of the Pharisees (John 4:9). Jesus taught being neighbourly to those whom one could help, so here He practised what He preached (Luke 10:29-37).

‘Many more believed because of his own word’ – Two groups of “many” (John 4:39, 4:41) made a large congregation.

These Samaritans believed He was the Saviour of Gentiles as well as Jews. They were not like the other Samaritans that would not receive Him (Luke 9:51-56). Receiving Jesus will make a change in any life, community, or nation.

Jesus and His disciples left after two days to continue their journey to Galilee.  His native country was Judea – His town, Bethlehem (Mic. 5:1-2; Matt. 2:1-23). His adopted country was Galilee. Judea rejected Him, but Galilee received Him (John 4:45). Nazareth, His adopted home town, rejected Him, but not all of Galilee (Luke 4:16-30).

Be Born Again

John 3:1-4 There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou do, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus said unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? 

There was a man – Nicodemus, ruler of the Jews; He was a Jewish Rabbi, member of the Sanhedrin, and one of the three richest men in Jerusalem. He came to Jesus (John 3:1); He testified for Him (John 7:50-51); and He did service for Him (John 19:39).

Nicodemus didn’t come to Jesus by night because of personal shame like the disciples in John 20:19. It was more from fear than shame (John 7:50; 19:38-39). Through centuries Christians who were not ashamed of Christ did do things for fear of persecutors and this was wisdom in most cases.

‘We know that thou art a teacher come from God’ – evidently, the rulers had come to this conclusion, but the majority were too rebellious, to be honest, and sincere.

‘God be with him’ – the secret of power (Acts 10:38) for those who belong to God.

‘Except a man be born again,’ the Greek word for born is gennethe, and again is anothen, which means to be begotten from above. It literally means there must be a transformation from God and a renewal in righteousness and true holiness to be saved (2Cor. 5:17-21; Eph. 4:22-24; Col. 1:13-14, 20; 2:12-17; 3:1-16).

‘He cannot see the kingdom of God’ the Greek word for ‘to see’ is eidon, which is not so much the mere act of looking, but the actual perception of the kingdom and its realities.

‘Be born’ Nicodemus misunderstood Jesus and thought only in human terms. Millions today make the same mistake in comparing the new birth with the old birth. This is the very thing Jesus did not want men to do (John 3:12). The truth is: one is a begetting and a coming into existence; the other is an adoption (Rom. 8:14-16; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5).


John 1:25-28  And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptize thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet? John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there stand one among you, whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. 

Jews were accustomed to making converts by ceremonial cleansing, but never without an order from the Sanhedrin or before three magistrates or doctors of the law. They, therefore, felt jealous of John, who not only baptized without Jewish authority but baptized Jews contrary to the practice of the Pharisees.

John’s reason for baptizing was that the Messiah should be made manifest (known) to Israel (John 1:26-31).  There are seven baptisms in Scripture: John’s baptism in water to introduce Christ to Israel (Matt. 3:1-17; Mark 1:1-45; Lk. 3:1-38; 7:29-30; John 1:31-33; 3:23-26; 10:40; Acts1:5; 11:16; 19:3); Christ’s baptism in water (John 3:22; 4:1-2) which announced the beginning of His three year ministry and showed His purpose as the one without sin that will clean the world with water (washing in the Word) and by shedding His blood at His crucifixion (1Jn 5:7-8); Baptism in suffering (Lk. 12:50); Baptism in the cloud and in the sea (1Cor. 10:2) refers to Moses and the nation Israel going through the Red Sea that was a type of the washing that we have to go through for salvation as we are called out of the bondage of sin (Egypt); and the last three that is relevant and necessary for today’s Christians:  Baptism into Christ and into His body (Rom. 6:3-7; 1Cor. 12:13; Gal. 3:27; Col. 2:12) at repentance and the new birth; Christian baptism in water (Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38-41; 8:12-16, 36-38; 9:18; 10:47-48; 16:15, 33; 18:8; 19:5; 22:16; 1Cor. 1:13-17; 1Pet. 3:21) this is for testifying of dying to one’s old nature after being reborn; Baptism in the Holy Spirit (Matt. 3:11, 14; 20:22-23; Mark 1:810:38-39; Lk. 3:16; John 1:33; 7:37-39; Acts 1:5; 11:16; 19:2-3) which is the enduement of power for service.

The Holy Spirit is the agent to baptize into Christ and into His body; Christ is the agent to baptize in the Holy Spirit, and the minister is the agent to baptize into water (Matt. 28:19).