Thursday after Jubilate
Scripture: St. John 7:25-36 (NKJV)
25 Now some of them from Jerusalem said, “Is this not He whom they seek to kill? 26 But look! He speaks boldly, and they say nothing to Him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is truly the Christ? 27 However, we know where this Man is from; but when the Christ comes, no one knows where He is from.” 28 Then Jesus cried out, as He taught in the temple, saying, “You both know Me, and you know where I am from; and I have not come of Myself, but He who sent Me is true, whom you do not know. 29 But I know Him, for I am from Him, and He sent Me.” 30 Therefore they sought to take Him; but no one laid a hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come.
31 And many of the people believed in Him, and said, “When the Christ comes, will He do more signs than these which this Man has done?” 32 The Pharisees heard the crowd murmuring these things concerning Him, and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take Him. 33 Then Jesus said to them, “I shall be with you a little while longer, and then I go to Him who sent Me. 34 You will seek Me and not find Me, and where I am you cannot come.” 35 Then the Jews said among themselves, “Where does He intend to go that we shall not find Him? Does He intend to go to the Dispersion among the Greeks and teach the Greeks? 36 What is this thing that He said, ‘You will seek Me and not find Me, and where I am you cannot come’?”
The Messiah was clearly identified in Holy Scripture. From it the Jews knew that the Christ was to come from the seed, blood, and lineage of King David. They also knew definitely that the Messiah was to be born in the town of Bethlehem. This much they did know. It was common knowledge. On this the prophecy concerning the Christ was clear. According to Luther, “a rumor circulated among the Jews that the Messiah would appear secretly.” Therefore they say, “However, we know where this Man is from; but when the Christ comes, no one knows where He is from.”
This rumor was more than likely circulated by the scribes and Pharisees, who had rejected the Lord Jesus as the Messiah. And if He is not the Christ, then He must be killed. They sought to lay hands on Him, but because it was not His time yet, they were unsuccessful. To these desires of harm and death to our Lord Jesus, He responds by proclaiming His death and resurrection, “I shall be with you a little while longer, and then I go to Him who sent Me. You will seek Me and not find Me, and where I am you cannot come.”
What a glorious response from our Lord and Savior! They seek to kill Him—those who are undeserving of His love and grace—and He proclaims the means by which He will redeem the whole world from sin, death, and the devil. He will be crucified, dead, and buried, and on the third day rise again from the dead and sit on the right hand of the Father, to judge both the quick and the dead according to those who have faith in His perfect obedience and His sacrifice for them on the holy Cross.