The famously shortest verse in the Bible appears in the gospel of John:
Jesus Wept (John 11:35)
It happens when Jesus is about to raise Lazarus from the dead. The question I want to answer in this post is “WHY did Jesus weep?” After doing some digging, I believe I found an answer. It is not what most people think, because I do not believe anyone has noticed the thing that I have noticed.
I have never heard this preached on before in my entire life, but I’m quite confident it is the correct reason.
The Passage at Issue
So first, we should at least review the relevant passage:
When she had said this, she went and called her sister Mary, saying in private, “The Teacher is here and is calling for you.” And when she heard it, she rose quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come into the village, but was still in the place where Martha had met him. When the Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary rise quickly and go out, they followed her, supposing that she was going to the tomb to weep there. Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man also have kept this man from dying?”
(John 11:28 – 37)
There isn’t much there as to why Jesus wept. Here’s an article from Desiring God, wondering if it was a reaction to the calamity of sin, an act of sympathetic compassion, a realization of the cost of redemption, or a previous of Jesus’s own death. Here’s the Wikipedia page on the verse, giving memorable explanations like Pope Gregory’s pithy statement: “In His humanity Jesus wept for Lazarus; in His divinity he raised him from the dead.” Here is a video of John MacArthur explaining it as an issue of Jesus’s compassion. Growing up, I remember being told that Jesus wept because of the overwhelming emotion of the situation, and the effect of Lazarus’s death on him. Lazarus was his friend, after all, and the effect of his death was real.
However, none of this stuff ever made sense to me. Even if Jesus is crying from his “humanity,” it is clear that Jesus in his humanity already knows that he’s going to raise Lazarus from the dead. It’s obvious that Jesus from the very beginning knows what is going to happen.
He knew Lazarus was sick. He knew Lazarus would die. On two occasions, Jesus is told that if he had been there, Lazarus would not have died. He never denies it. But Jesus explains to his disciples what he is doing before they even arrive at the home of Lazarus:
After saying these things, he said to them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I go to awaken him.” The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.” Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he meant taking rest in sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
“Glad that I was not there” does not go well with Jesus being sad about Lazarus’s death. If Jesus knows that Lazarus is going to be raised from the dead right from the beginning, why would he be moved to tears when he sees everyone weeping at the death of Lazarus? Doesn’t he know this is going to happen? Why is he weeping instead of holding back a smile due to the happy ending he knows is coming?
This is why it doesn’t make sense to me that Jesus weeps because he is overwhelmed by the death of Lazarus. Additionally, claiming that Jesus was weeping because of his love for Lazarus is also what the Jews believe, and I do not believe the Jews are correct.
Instead, I think that the real reason Jesus weeps is because of what the Jews say to him, not the death of Lazarus. The reason for his weeping is this small exchange:
And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.”
Believe it or not, this is related to the reason why Jesus wept in John 11. But obviously, this is going to require some explanation. We need to break it down.
The Meaning of Κύριε in the Gospel of John
It comes down to that word “Lord,” which is There is a Greek word that is often used in the gospel of John and throughout the New Testament. The Greek word is Κύριε, which is translated as “Sir” or “Lord” depending on the context. However, what we English readers need to understand is that both “Sir” and “Lord” in our Bibles are the SAME WORD in Greek.
This word is “Κύριε” and it is used by John the Baptist to explain who he is and who Jesus is, as well:
So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord (Κύριε),’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” (John 1:22-23)
However, it is also the word used in the context of just being polite in the mildest degree. The woman at the well uses the word with Jesus when she says the following:
The woman said to him, “Sir (Κύριε), you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” (John 4:1:11-12)
This is the word the Jews use to address Jesus when they are showing him where they laid the body of Lazarus:
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord (Κύριε), come and see.” Jesus wept.
The Meaning of Ἰουδαῖοι in the Gospel of John
There is another word that John uses quite specifically. This is the word “the Jews” or “Ἰουδαῖοι.” In one sense, everyone who is not a Samaritan, a Roman, or a Greek is a Jew, because almost everybody is a Jew in Judea. That’s why it’s called “Judea.” But John uses it very specifically. These “Jews” are the rulers of Jerusalem. They are the scribes, the priests, the Sanhedrin, and all of the “rulers.”
When John is preaching in the wilderness, “the Jews” in Jerusalem send priests and Levites to question him about who he is:
And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι) sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.” So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us (that is: Ἰουδαῖοι). What do you say about yourself? He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord (Κύριε),’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”
In other words, the “Jews” are the head-honchos in the nation. Nicodemus, as a Pharisee and a ruler, is one of these “Jews” (Ἰουδαῖοι), because note how he is described in John 3:
Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. (John 3:1)
The Jews most often appear at the Temple and in Jerusalem. Sometimes they are at Capernaum. But they are always distinguished from “the crowds,” even crowds that are obviously made up of Jewish people.
We can see this because when “the Jews” come to John, they must “send” people out to see him, even though normal Jewish people were seeing John all the time. Therefore, it is clear that “the Jews” are the rulers of the Jews, and not just anyone.
What Happens Before Jesus Weeps
What I noticed in reading John is that John 11:34 is that the Jews are merely being polite when they call Jesus “Κύριε.” This is not like the confession of Mary or the proclaimed fidelity of Peter. They are being polite because they are comforting Mary and Martha, who are obviously on good terms with Jesus. That is why they call Jesus “Lord.”
But Jesus is called “Lord” so many times in the gospel of John, it is easy to miss the significance of this. All sorts of people call Jesus Κύριε. His disciples do. The Samaritan woman does. The royal official in Capernaum does. His disciples, Mary, Martha, and all those who are around him call him “teacher” and “rabbi” and “Lord.” Just before this exchange between Jesus and the Jews, Mary tells Jesus:
“Yes, Lord (Κύριε); I believe that you are the Christ (Χριστὸς), the Son of God (Υἱὸς τοῦ Θεοῦ), who is coming into the world.” (John 11:27)
Afterwards, in John 12, random Greeks even call Jesus’s disciples “Lord” in at attempt to see Jesus.
Now among those who went up to worship at the feast were some Greeks. So these came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and asked him, “Sir (Κύριε), we wish to see Jesus.” Philip went and told Andrew; Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus. And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.
But unlike all these other people who call Jesus “Lord” (Κύριε), the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι) do not. In fact, they NEVER do so.
Nicodemus comes close. He calls him “Rabbi” (Ῥαββί) and “a teacher come from God” (ἀπὸ Θεοῦ ἐλήλυθας διδάσκαλος) , but never “Lord” (Κύριε).But in contrast to Nicodemus, the Jews do far worse. They occasionally call him “Rabbi” (Ῥαββί), and occasionally, “Teacher” (διδάσκαλος), but usually in a test, and always as a challenge to him, never in admiration.
The word the Jews most often use is the word “man.” But that’s only when they’re being polite. In John 8, they call him a “Samaritan” as an ethnic and religious insult. In the same sentence, they claim he has a “demon.” In John 9, they call him a “sinner.” And it’s not only their words which are harsh.
It is important to remember the last encounter between Jesus and the Jews before the resurrection of Lazarus. Jesus had to escape from the Jews because he was in danger of being killed. Jesus was explaining that he is “the good shepherd” who “lays down his life for his sheep.” But the Jews again say he “has a demon” and “is insane.” They claim that he is “a man” who is trying to make himself God. In response, Jesus claims he is “him whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world.” At this point, the Jews pick up stones to kill him, and he must flee Jerusalem. That is the last thing that happened before they meet again in John 11.
The Jews NEVER call Jesus “Lord,” and that pattern holds even outside the gospel of John. Neither the Jews, the scribes, the Pharisees, nor the Sadducees ever call Jesus “Lord” or even “Sir” in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John.
There is only one place where the Jews address Jesus with any term of authority at all, but it is when mock him when he is on the cross:
“He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’”
So also the chief priests with the scribes mocked him to one another, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” Those who were crucified with him also reviled him.
And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!”
This is why the significant explanation of Jesus’s weeping is in John 11:34.
THIS IS THE ONLY TIME THE JEWS EVER CALL JESUS “LORD.”
What Jesus is Called After He Raises Lazarus
Afterwards, the Jews still do not call him “Lord” (Κύριε). But they never call him “teacher” or “Rabbi” either. They only refer him as a “man” who does evil. Then they arrest and crucify him.
Strangely enough, it is Pilate who first asks Jesus if he is a king, and Jesus confirms this. Afterwards, it is Pilate — a Roman — who again and again claims that Jesus is the “King of the Jews.”
Pilate, when seeking to release Jesus asks if they wish for their king to be crucified, they answer “We have no king but Caesar.” That is a striking and heartbreaking betrayal.
And it is Pilate who places a notice on top of Jesus’s cross:
Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It read, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.”
And then the Jews tried one last time to deny and reject Jesus again:
Many of the Jews read this inscription, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was written in Aramaic, in Latin, and in Greek. So the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but rather, ‘This man said, I am King of the Jews.’”
But though their hearts are still far from him, they will behold their king:
Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.”
Why Jesus Wept
Why did Jesus weep? Because for a fleeting moment, the Jews called him “Lord.” That is what he wants. That is what he desperately wants, but he does not get it.
This explanation also corresponds to the only other time Jesus weeps in the gospels, shortly after the triumphal entry:
And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation.”
Here, Jesus is weeping because he foresees the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, and he knows that if the city knew who he was and accepted him, it would not happen. It will not happen, because on this day, the same day as the triumphal entry into Jerusalem, the city did not know:
“the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.”
If we want some more insight, we can remember what James, the brother of Jesus, explained in his own letter about Jesus Christ:
Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us . . . Submit yourselves therefore to God.”
James says that God “yearns jealously” over what our hearts are drawn towards. That is what it means to yearn “over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us.” And after this explanation, James tells us to “submit” ourselves to God. How do we do that? We call him Lord.
In John 11:35, Jesus weeps not because he loves Lazarus, even though he does. Jesus weeps because he loves the Jews who were seeking to kill him. He weeps because he allowed his friend to die so that they might believe in him. He weeps because he knows they will not believe in him. Instead, they will seek to kill both him and Lazarus, rather than submit themselves to Jesus, and call him Lord.
But for one small moment — just to be polite — the Jews called Jesus “Lord.” He tasted what might have been had his people loved him, even though they did not and would not. They called him “Κύριε,” and for a brief moment, Jesus absolutely lost it.
That is why Jesus wept.
What Jesus is Called by Whom in the Gospel of John
For the full picture of what Jesus is called by whom in the gospel of John, I give you my work below. I ignored every time that Jesus is called “Jesus” or merely as the pronoun “he.” Instead, I took every time Jesus is identified by a speaker or very specifically described.
|Verse Reference||What Jesus is Called||The One Who Calls Him This|
|John 1:1||Word (Λόγος)||Narrator|
|John 1:1||God (Θεὸς)||Narrator|
|John 1:9||light (φωτός )||Narrator|
|John 1:14||Word (Λόγος)||Narrator|
|John 1:17||Christ (Χριστοῦ)||Narrator|
|John 1:23||the Lord (Κυρίου)||John the Baptist|
|John 1:29||the Lamb of God||John the Baptist|
|John 1:34||the Son of God||John the Baptist|
|John 1:35||the Lamb of God||John the Baptist|
|John 1:38||Rabbi (Ῥαββί)||Andrew|
|John 1:38||Teacher (Διδάσκαλε )||Narrator (in translation)|
|John 1:44||him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph||Philip|
|John 1:49||Rabbi (Ῥαββί)||Nathanael|
|John 1:49||the Son of God||Nathanael|
|John 1:49||the King of Israel||Nathanael|
|John 1:51||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 3:2||Rabbi (Ῥαββί)||Nicodemus|
|John 3:2||a teacher come from God||Nicodemus|
|John 3:14||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 3:16||only Son [of God]||Narrator|
|John 3:18||only Son of God||Narrator|
|John 3:34||he whom God has sent||John the Baptist|
|John 3:35||the Son||John the Baptist|
|John 3:36||the Son||John the Baptist|
|John 4:9||you, a Jew||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:11||Sir (Κύριε)||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:15||Sir (Κύριε)||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:19||Sir (Κύριε)||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:19||prophet||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:29||the Christ||Samaritan Woman|
|John 4:31||Rabbi||the disciples|
|John 4:42||Savior of the world||the Samaritans in Sychar|
|John 4:49||Sir (Κύριε)||Official in Capernaum|
|John 5:7||Sir (Κύριε)||Invalid at the Sheep Gate|
|John 5:11||the man who healed me||Invalid at the Sheep Gate|
|John 5:12||the man who said to you “Take up your bed and walk.”||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 5:19||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:19||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:20||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:21||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:22||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:23||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:23||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:25||the Son of God||Jesus|
|John 5:26||the Son||Jesus|
|John 5:27||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 6:14||the Prophet||the Five Thousand|
|John 6:25||Rabbi||the Five Thousand|
|John 6:27||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 6:29||him whom [the Father] has sent||Jesus|
|John 6:33||the bread of God||Jesus|
|John 6:34||Sir (Κύριε)||the Five Thousand|
|John 6:35||the bread of life||Jesus|
|John 6:40||the Son||Jesus|
|John 6:41||Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know?||the Jews [grumbling about Jesus]|
|John 6:46||he who is from God||Jesus|
|John 6:48||the bread of life||Jesus|
|John 6:49||the living bread that came down from heaven||Jesus|
|John 6:52||this man||the Jews [disputing among themselves]|
|John 6:53||Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 6:61||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 6:68||Lord (Κύριε)||Simon Peter|
|John 7:12||a good man||some in Jerusalem|
|John 7:15||this man [who has never studied]||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 7:20||have a demon||the crowd of the Jews|
|John 7:26||the Christ?||some in Jerusalem|
|John 7:31||this man||some in Jerusalem|
|John 7:35||this man||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 7:40||the Prophet||some [in Jerusalem]|
|John 7:40||the Christ||others [in Jerusalem]|
|John 8:4||Teacher (Διδάσκαλε )||the scribes and Pharisees|
|John 8:11||Lord (κύριε )||woman accused of adultery|
|John 8:12||light of the world||Jesus|
|John 8:28||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 8:48||Samaritan||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 8:48||have a demon||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 8:52||have a demon||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 8:58||before Abraham was, I am||Jesus|
|John 9:2||Rabbi||the disciples|
|John 9:5||the light of the world||Jesus|
|John 9:11||the man called Jesus||the man born blind|
|John 9:17||a prophet||the man born blind|
|John 9:24||a sinner||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 9:29||this man [do not know where he came from]||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 9:33||this man [is from God]||the man born blind|
|John 9:35||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 9:36||Sir (κύριε )||the man born blind|
|John 9:38||Lord (κύριε )||the man born blind|
|John 10:7||the door of the sheep||Jesus|
|John 10:9||the door||Jesus|
|John 10:11||the good shepherd||Jesus|
|John 10:11||the good shepherd||Jesus|
|John 10:14||the good shepherd||Jesus|
|John 10:20||has a demon||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 10:20||is insane||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 10:21||not one who is oppressed by a demon||others in the Temple|
|John 10:33||a man [who makes himself God]||the Jews (Ἰουδαῖοι)|
|John 10:35||him whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world||Jesus|
|John 10:36||the Son of God||Jesus|
|John 10:38||in the Father||Jesus|
|John 10:41||this man [is everything that John the Baptist said about him]||many|
|John 11:2||the Lord (κύριε)||Narrator|
|John 11:3||Lord (κύριε)||Mary and Martha|
|John 11:4||the Son of God||Jesus|
|John 11:8||Rabbi||the disciples|
|John 11:12||Lord (κύριε)||the disciples|
|John 11:21||Lord (κύριε)||Martha|
|John 11:25||the resurrection||Jesus|
|John 11:25||the life||Jesus|
|John 11:27||Lord (κύριε)||Martha|
|John 11:27||the Christ||Martha|
|John 11:27||the Son of God||Martha|
|John 11:27||the Teacher (Διδάσκαλος)||Martha|
|John 11:32||Lord (κύριε)||Mary|
|John 11:34||Lord (κύριε)||the Jews|
|John 11:37||he who opened the eyes of the blind man||some of the Jews|
|John 11:39||Lord (κύριε)||Martha|
|John 11:47||this man||the chief priests, the Pharisees, and the council|
|John 11:49||one man||Caiaphas, the high priest|
|John 12:13||He who comes in the name of the Lord||large crowd|
|John 12:13||the King of Israel||large crowd|
|John 12:23||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 12:35||the light||Jesus|
|John 12:36||the light||Jesus|
|John 12:38||Lord (Κύριε )||Narrator (Isaiah, quoted)|
|John 13:6||Lord (Κύριε )||Simon Peter|
|John 13:9||Lord (Κύριε )||Simon Peter|
|John 13:13||Teacher (Διδάσκαλος)||Jesus|
|John 13:13||Lord (Κύριε )||Jesus|
|John 13:14||your Lord (Κύριε )||Jesus|
|John 13:14||you Teacher (Διδάσκαλος)||Jesus|
|John 13:25||Lord (Κύριε )||John the disciple|
|John 13:31||the Son of Man||Jesus|
|John 13:36||Lord (Κύριε )||Simon Peter|
|John 13:37||Lord (Κύριε )||Simon Peter|
|John 14:5||Lord (Κύριε )||Thomas|
|John 14:6||the way||Jesus|
|John 14:6||the truth||Jesus|
|John 14:6||the life||Jesus|
|John 14:8||Lord (Κύριε )||Philip|
|John 14:10||in the Father||Jesus|
|John 14:11||in the Father||Jesus|
|John 14:13||the Son||Jesus|
|John 15:1||the true vine||Jesus|
|John 15:5||the vine||Jesus|
|John 17:1||your Son||Jesus|
|John 17:1||the Son||Jesus|
|John 17:3||Jesus Christ||Jesus|
|John 18:5||Jesus of Nazareth||soldiers and some officers of the Jews|
|John 18:5||I am||Jesus|
|John 18:6||I am||Jesus|
|John 18:7||Jesus of Nazareth||soldiers and some officers of the Jews|
|John 18:8||I am [Jesus of Nazareth]||Jesus|
|John 18:17||this man||servant girl at the door|
|John 18:29||this man||Pilate|
|John 18:30||this man||the Jews|
|John 18:33||King of the Jews?||Pilate|
|John 18:37||a king?||Pilate|
|John 18:37||a king||Jesus|
|John 18:39||King of the Jews||Jesus|
|John 19:3||King of the Jews||Roman soldiers|
|John 19:5||the man||Pilate|
|John 19:14||your King||Pilate|
|John 19:15||your King||Pilate|
|John 19:19||Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews||Pilate|
|John 19:21||[not] The King of the Jews||the Jews|
|John 19:21||[one who said he was] King of the Jews||the Jews|
|John 20:2||the Lord (Κύριον)||Mary Magdalene|
|John 20:13||my Lord (Κύριον)||Mary Magdalene|
|John 20:14||Sir (Κύριε )||Mary Magdalene|
|John 20:16||Rabboni (Ραββουνι )||Mary Magdalene|
|John 20:18||the Lord (Κύριε)||Mary Magdalene|
|John 20:20||the Lord (Κύριον)||Narrator|
|John 20:25||the Lord (Κύριον)||the disciples|
|John 20:28||my Lord (Κύριός)||Thomas|
|John 20:28||my God (Θεός)||Thomas|
|John 20:31||the Christ (Χριστὸς)||Narrator|
|John 20:31||the Son of God||Narrator|
|John 21:7||the Lord (Κύριός)||John the disciple|
|John 21:12||the Lord (Κύριός)||Narrator|
|John 21:15||Lord (Κύριε)||Simon Peter|
|John 21:16||Lord (Κύριε)||Simon Peter|
|John 21:17||Lord (Κύριε)||Simon Peter|
|John 21:20||Lord (Κύριε)||John the disciple [quoted]|
|John 21:21||Lord (Κύριε)||Simon Peter|
I hope you were helped by this explanation of John 11:35. This was a fun side-project that I’ve done, and I hope you are satisfied with my thoroughness. If you like it, please share.
However, I write this to get some help. My real area of study is not Jesus’s words in John. The REAL discovery that I have made in the Bible — and I know how this sounds, so stay with me — is the Magi’s Star, both as the “Star in the East” and “Star of Bethlehem.” I know what “the Star” is. I know when it appeared. I know what it meant to the Magi. I know how it moved. I know how it “went before” the Magi. I know how it “came and stood” over the place where the child was. I know how it brought the Magi to a particular house in Bethlehem. I even have compelling proof of its existence in recorded history. I have an entire chronology of events like the ones in the last two posts to support the plausibility of the explanation. The explanation I have is far more solid that what I have put forward above, which is really just a side-project to a side-project.
But I need help. I am only a (very good looking and) moderately talented lawyer. I am not an academic. I have no clout in the academic biblical-studies field. This big project requires convincing experts first, and I need some serious credentials to get that done.
I need help getting published or getting attention in the Biblical studies department. If you’d like to see the full scope of my research and help bring it to a larger audience, please contact me at mrcalebjones at gmail dot com. Let me know who you are and how you can help (or if you’d like me to come present at your church or gathering) and I’d be happy to show you what I’ve got.
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Your bible dissection is far far better than most. Indeed I have spotted only one little error in all this, which is interpretative as opposed to textual. Thats why I’m posting this since I often wish people would do the same for me so I could either learn something or correct the other person with righteous fur….um … Scripture!.
You wrote:”The word the Jews most often use is the word “man.” But that’s only when they’re being polite. In John 8, they call him a “Samaritan” as an ethnic and religious insult. In the same sentence, they claim he has a “demon.” In John 9, they call him a “sinner.” And it’s not only their words which are harsh.”
This dialogue is part of a very long one that starts with the Jesus talking to “the Jews who believed in him” which (I think) is excellent translation made with irony.
Imagine that the only people who believed in Jesus were his 12 apostles, and they were Jews who would say such things mockingly. And that a man born around the time of Jesus death named John knew this. Read that whole dialogue again and tell me where the apostles leave and the Jews enter.
What’s that got to do with anything? Imagine this man called John, who was as true to Jesus as true can be, and once even authored a book called Revelation as Jesus. Imagine he had once seen the work he finished on behalf of a dead man broken and burnt by a man who also claimed to have been receiving instructions by the risen Jesus, only without writing a Gospel and Revelation in his name. And then have a look exactly where in Acts the name Saul changes to Paul and the man that became blind after accusing barJesus in the name of Satan while John steps off the stage for a second.
John had for one brief beautiful moment, completed Jesus’ work, repairing the damaged world….
I don’t know why you seek publishing or to be accepted in Biblical Studies journals. From what I have seen you have to play politics well to even have a chance. But I have no influence with anyone. My blog posts generally aren’t as scholarly, the closest I have come is a few like http://www.godispossible.com/?p=314 but if you critique it I could probably fix it up a bit and you’d get better at what you already do very well.
My favourite bible verse at church because it was the shortest and easiest to remember.