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John26 – suicide by choice

So Jesus spoke to them again, stating, “I am the light of the world. The one following me may never walk in the darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8: 12) 
It’s around AD30 in this first-century eye-witness biography of Jesus by his disciple John. Several groups used to meet him there in the temple treasury: ‘the crowd’; ‘officers from the chief priests’; ‘Pharisees’. Folk just like all of us. 

If you read intently these words of Jesus you will see that he regards his hearers, one and all, as ‘walking in darkness’. I suppose that’s possible.

Although former US President Donald Trump has become globally known for his strong words and actions, he never spoke anything like the words that Jesus speaks here. Jesus states very clearly, ‘I am the light of the world.” 

Clearly an opportunity exists for anybody to “have the light of life.’  The Greek word Jesus here used for ‘life’ (zoe) was not the same as the word he used (psyche) when he said, “The one who loves his life loses it.” He often used zoe with the adjective ‘eternal’.  We may then be 'in darkness' until we understand that this ‘light of [zoe] life’ is much more than the [psyche] life we presently have. Are we, by choice, committing zoe suicide?

So the Pharisees said to him, “You are testifying concerning yourself. Your testimony is not true.”

Totally avoiding the magnitude of Jesus’ words, the Pharisees trumpet a facile, illogical argument. A person making claims about himself may be lying. But he may not be lying. His testimony may be true.

‘There are none so bitter against the truth as those who have departed from it.’ (James Philip)
Jesus answered and said to them, “Even if I myself may testify concerning myself, my testimony is true, in that I discern from where I have come and to where I am going away. In fact you have not discerned from where I have come or to where I am going away."

Jesus’ maintains that his statement ‘I am the light of the world’ is true – because he knows from where he has come and to where he is going. Is there a suggestion here that those who listen to Jesus may themselves not know where they’ve come from or where they’re going? Are his hearers in darkness, in particular, each about the origin and destiny of his or her “me”? As well as about the origin and destiny of Jesus?

“You judge with reference to the flesh; I myself am judging no-one."

What is it ‘to judge with respect to the flesh’? Is my judgment skewed through my propensity to veer towards what is good for me personally – that is, towards my comfort? 

What then is it like ‘to judge no-one’? Have you noticed how much judging there is today? The newspapers are full of folk judging (and condemning) one another, individually or in groups. Jesus didn’t judge the woman in John24.

"And in fact even if I may judge, my judgment is true, in that I am not alone, but I and the Father having sent me. And in fact in your own law it is written that the testimony of two men is true. I myself am the one testifying concerning myself, and the Father having sent me testifies concerning me.”

If Jesus were to judge (one day?) his judgment would be the truth. He explains why that is so. I’m fully persuaded that ‘the truth’ eludes us all as human beings. That doesn’t stop our unending judgment of others.

Jesus now teaches all these people that the truth is not only in his teaching but also the subject of testimony from ‘the Father’. I wonder... Do folk hear that testimony within from time to time and immediately dismiss it? Zoe life suicide by choice – while holding on tenaciously to psyche life only?

‘Truth lives in the cellar, error on the doorstep.’ (Austin O’Malley, University Professor, 1858-1932)
So they were stating to him, “Where is your father?” Jesus answered, “You discern neither me nor my Father! If you had discerned me, you had discerned my Father also.” 

Maybe Jesus’ mention of ‘the Father’ reminded them that they had found out that his earthly father was not Joseph. So they continue to 'judge' and to ‘walk in darkness’. Zoe life is not for them even when their psyche lives are running out.

These messages he spoke in the treasury, teaching in the temple, and no one took him, in that his hour had not yet come.  

Sinner Syvret

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