John 12:20-36

Jesus says that he will soon die

20 There were some Greek people among the people at the festival. They also had come to worship God. 21 These Greek people came to Philip, who was from a town in Galilee called Bethsaida. They said to him, ‘Please sir, we want to meet Jesus.’ 22 Philip went and he told Andrew this. Then Philip and Andrew went to Jesus and they told him.

23 Jesus said to them, ‘God will show how great the Son of Man is. It is now time for that to happen. 24 I tell you this: A seed of wheat continues to be only a single seed unless it falls into the ground. It must fall into the ground and then it must die. If it dies like that, it will grow to give a lot of seeds.

25 Anyone who loves his own life will lose it. But anyone who hates his life in this world will have true life for ever with God. 26 Anyone who wants to be my servant must follow me. Then he will be with me, where I am. My Father will praise anyone who is my servant. 27 Now I have trouble in my mind. What will I say? I might say, “Father, save me from this time of trouble!” But this difficult time is the purpose for which I came to the world. 28 So, I will say, “Father, show how great and how good you are.” ’

Then a voice spoke from heaven and said, ‘I have shown how great and how good I am. And I will do it again.’ 29 The crowd of people who were standing there heard the sound of this voice. They said that it was like the noise of thunder in a storm. But other people said, ‘An angel spoke to him!’

30 Jesus said, ‘When this voice spoke, it was not so that it could help me. No, it spoke so that it could help you. 31 It is time now for God to judge the people in this world. Now he will throw out the ruler of this world. 32 But when people lift me up from the ground, then I will bring everyone to myself.’ 33 Jesus said this to show in what way he would soon die.

12:33Jesus said that people would ‘lift him up’. He meant that they would lift him up on a cross of wood to die. The Romans were the rulers of Israel and of other countries when Jesus lived on the earth. They often punished people in this way.

34 The crowd said, ‘The Bible tells us that the Messiah will continue for ever. So why do you say, “People must lift up the Son of Man”? Who is this Son of Man?’ 35 Jesus answered, ‘The light will be with you for only a short time longer. So, continue to walk while you still have the light. Do that, so that the dark will not come over you. Anyone who walks in the dark does not know where they are going. 36 While you still have the light with you, believe in that light. So then you will become children of light.’ When Jesus had said this, he went away. He hid himself from them.