John 10:31-42

Again his Jewish opponents picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?”
“We are not stoning you for any good work,” they replied, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.”
Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods”’? If he called them ‘gods,’ to whom the word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside — what about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world? Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, ‘I am God’s Son’? Do not believe me unless I do the works of my Father. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.” Again they tried to seize him, but he escaped their grasp.
Then Jesus went back across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing in the early days. There he stayed, and many people came to him. They said, “Though John never performed a sign, all that John said about this man was true.” And in that place many believed in Jesus.

Yet again, the Jews pick up stones to stone Jesus. It is a reaction to what they perceive as blasphemy. Their response is because they are literally interpreting the law. They fail to grasp the deeper spiritual truth Jesus embodies. 

The aggression is a recurring theme, a conflict between the established religious order and the new revelation of God in Jesus. It poses an interesting challenge to us: how often do we cling to our interpretations of religious traditions at the expense of a fresh understanding of divine truth?

Jesus' response to this hostility is striking. He asks, "I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?" He is not merely defending himself but inviting his accusers to reconsider their understanding of his works. He is calling them to see beyond the surface and recognize the divine origin and purpose of his actions.

Then Jesus makes a puzzling statement. He quotes: "I said, 'You are "gods"; you are all sons of the Most High.'" Jesus then asks his listeners: If he called them 'gods,' to whom the word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside — what about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world?"

What does Jesus mean? Who is Scripture referring to as "gods"? The reference is from Psalm 82:6. The psalmist speaks about God standing in the "assembly of the gods" and judging among the "gods." Please note the small "g". 

The term "gods" here is typically understood to refer to rulers or judges in Israel, individuals who held positions of authority and were responsible for enacting justice. In the psalm, these "gods" or judges are rebuked by God for their injustice and partiality. 

When Jesus quotes this psalm, he is making a point. If Scripture can use the term "gods" for those to whom the word of God came (that is, the human judges or rulers), then it is not blasphemy for him, who is consecrated and sent into the world by the Father, to call himself the Son of God.

Jesus uses this Scripture to highlight the inconsistency in the Jews' reasoning. If human judges can be metaphorically called "gods" because of their divinely appointed role, then it should not be considered blasphemous for Jesus, who is fulfilling a much higher divine mission, to claim a unique relationship with God.

His reasoning didn’t sway them; they tried to seize him but he escaped. The question for us is this: would we have acted any differently?

God bless you.  

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