John 1:9-18

Verses 9–18 is a concise description of Jesus’ life. Jesus portrayed again as the “true Light.” His purpose is to offer truth for every man. Through Christ, every person on earth has the opportunity to know Truth (John 1:9). Notice we are in the dark, Satan’s domain, and Jesus holds the “flashlight” so that we, too, can see Truth.

We learn in verse 10 that Jesus was in the world (physical form), and also that He was the one who created the world. The Jews did not acknowledge Him as their Messiah. God, in His wisdom, foretells this in Isa. 1:1–2. Even John the Baptist is confused about Jesus. The exchange between the Baptist’s followers and Jesus in Matt. 11:1–14 highlights the Jewish confusion about the Messiah The Jews should have known that Jesus fulfilled the prophecy about the Messiah. First, the Baptist is the forerunner (Mal. 3:1) who saw the Holy Spirit anointed Christ. Second, prophecy in Isa 35:5 and 61:1 are satisfied. Jesus’ point is that all the evidence is there; they refused to connect the dots.

We learn in the Gospels that Jesus will no longer show signs for Israel. Jesus will reject the nation of Israel and appeal to individuals for their salvation. Miracles are for Israel. Because the Jews continue to ask for signs, Jesus stops the signs due to their unbelief, and he rejects Israel. As John states in verse 12, individuals can receive salvation. Next, we dig deeper into these ideas.

Jesus is involved in two rejections. The Pharisees do not want any disruption to their version of Judaism. They were in charge and were not willing to give up power. Matt 12:1–14, Mark 3:1–6, and Luke 6:6–11 all describe the rejection by the Pharisees.[1] Here are the three confrontations:

1. “The Pharisees are upset about a Sabbath violation [Matt. 12:1–8, Mark 2:23–28, Luke 6:1–5] [2]).

2. The Pharisees are upset about Sabbath healing [Matt. 12:9–14, Mark 3:1–6, Luke 6:6–11 [3]].

3. The Pharisees think that Jesus is Satanic [, Matt. 12:22–32, Mark 3:20–30 [4]].” [5]

This specific issue was the reason for their ultimate rejection of His Messiahship. A common misconception is that they rejected Yeshua because He would not overthrow Rome. However, this is not the reason they gave. The real reason was that He rejected Pharisaism.” [6]

…Yeshua’s rejection of this law was the essential cause of disagreement between Him and the Pharisees.” [7]

What event caused Jesus to reject the religious establishment? When they blaspheme the Holy Spirit: Matt. 12:22–31 || Mark 3:19–27. Since the Pharisees decide to deny Jesus’ Messianic claims, Jesus rejects them and the nation. For this reason, Jesus will deal with individuals as the Jewish opportunity for salvation is postponed.

The rejection by the Jews on the cross occurs later, with the help of the religious establishment: Pharisees, Herodians, and Sanhedrin. Luke 19:41–44 indicates that the rejection of the Jewish nation has already occurred. Raising Lazarus from the dead, four days after his death, did cause individual Jews to believe (Jn. 12:10–11). The final rejection would be the death of Jesus on the Cross. We assume that after Jesus announces the rejection, his answer to the Jews is always the same:

Jesus’ miracles are seen as acts of divine power and mercy. When the Jews ask for a sign, they are consistently refused with the promise that the only sign they will receive is the sign of Jonah (Mt 12:38, 39; 16:1; Mk 8:11, 12; Lk 11:29, 30), a sign that refers to the death and resurrection of the Christ. As Jonah was in the belly of the whale for three days and three nights, so will the Son of man be in the heart of the earth for three days (Mt 12:40).” [8]

When John says that the Jews did not recognize him, we understand this also to mean they did not want to either. Verse 11 referred to the start of His ministry. The Jews did not receive him in spite of the works cited by Jesus to the Baptist.

Israel will have to wait for the third sign of Jonah to have national salvation (verse 11). Individuals are in view in verses 12 and 13. Jesus (Word) set aside his deity and became visible and lived as a Jew. Those that receive Jesus as the Messiah -such as those that saw or heard that Lazarus come to life believed as individuals. Two births for the salvation of every person: the physical birth and their spiritual birth. The later is something God can do. The idea of being “born again” comes again in John chapter 3 with the exchange with Nicodemus (also 1Pt 1:3, 1Jn 2:29)

The author of this book, John, gives evidence that Jesus is the Messiah. John, the author, saw Jesus in his glory. John saw all the miracles; not all the disciples saw every miracle. John the Baptist acknowledged Jesus as the one he prophesied about (verse 15), and John the apostle saw Jesus after he rose from the grave.

As mentioned above, Israel will have to wait for their redemption as a nation; but the law no longer applies to a saved individual. Salvation comes to those that receive Jesus Christ as their savior (verse 12). With Jesus, we have received grace and are now his child.

Recall that in verses 1–2, that Jesus was the visible God. Jesus was the “communication” from the Father so that man could know about the Father. The author adds one more piece of evidence that we should follow Jesus. What is that evidence? Jesus has seen the Father!


1., accessed 10/17/2019.

2. Lemke, S. W. (2007). The Academic Use of Gospel Harmonies. In Holman Christian Standard Bible: Harmony of the Gospels (p. 64). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

3, Lemke, S. W. (2007). The Academic Use of Gospel Harmonies. In Holman Christian Standard Bible: Harmony of the Gospels (p. 65). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

4. Lemke, S. W. (2007). The Academic Use of Gospel Harmonies. In Holman Christian Standard Bible: Harmony of the Gospels (p. 79). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

5., accessed 10/17/2019.

6. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum. Yeshua: The Life of Messiah from a Messianic Jewish Perspective — The Abridged Version (Kindle Locations 2835–2837). Ariel Ministries.

7. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum. Yeshua: The Life of Messiah from a Messianic Jewish Perspective — The Abridged Version (Kindle Location 2895). Ariel Ministries

8. Elwell, W. A., & Beitzel, B. J. (1988). Sign. In Baker encyclopedia of the Bible (Vol. 2, p. 1962). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House

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