John 12:37-50

This passage presents the problem of unbelief in face of manifest evidence of God’s power and presence.

  1. Both quotations from Isaiah in verses 38-40 speak of Christ, the latter because Christ’s glory is included in the vision of God’s glory in Isaiah 6. Who has and who has not ‘believed our report’? Why has God blinded their eyes, etc.?
    Does this apply today to:
    (a) Jews, and
    (b) non-Jews?
    Why do you believe?
  2. The seriousness of rejecting Jesus is the subject of verses 44-50, in which John summarizes the teaching of Jesus on this matter.
    Why is it so serious to reject Jesus?
    See verses 45, 46, 50, and compare Prov. 1:20-33.
    Why will Jesus’ word be the judge (verse 48)?


  1. Verse 42. ‘Put out of the synagogue’: cf. 9:22. This was a very severe punishment, involving separation from public worship and from social intercourse.
  2. Verse 45. ‘Sees’: here is the concept of careful observation leading to spiritual insight.