Believing In Jesus but Afraid to Confess Him — John 12:37-43

Nevertheless many, even of the authorities, believed in Jesus. But because of the Pharisees they did not confess it, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved human glory more than the glory that comes from God (John 12:42-43—NRSV).

Most of the elite in Judea did not believe in Jesus as the Messiah or a prophet. They loved the power, prestige, and position this world offers too much to risk all they valued to follow a poor Galilean carpenter turned preacher and kingdom-wide sensation because of His many signs. The people followed Jesus gladly and openly because of His loving and powerful works that only God would and could do. The elite ignored them, but they knew God loved them. Jesus showed divine compassion to the blind, the lame, and the bereaved that He healed and raised from the dead. Jesus went from town to town to teach the truth about God and the Scriptures to any who had ears to hear, whereas many of the elite thought thinking about the disadvantaged was not worth their time. Still, John reported that some of the elite did believe in Jesus. They knew Jesus was worthy to be followed as one sent from God. However, John also said that some of these elite believers would not confess their faith in Jesus and openly follow Jesus because they did not want to suffer separation from their friends and fellow rulers in the synagogue. They loved to seek the success this world offers to those who conform to the values held by those of this world, so they

refused to seek honor from God and the gift of eternal life that Jesus offers to all who truly believe in Him.

Thinking Further

1. What should have convinced those who saw Jesus to believe in Him?

2. What questions did Isaiah ask? How were these questions answered?

3. Why were some people unable to believe in Jesus?

4. Why do you think the Lord did this to these people?

5. Why did some who believed in Jesus prefer not to confess it? Do some still have this problem today?

Discuss the above questions by making a comment
Study the International Bible Study Commentary
and Lesson on John 12:37-43

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