John 8:31-59

God's true words will make you free

31 Then Jesus spoke to the Jews who believed him. He said, ‘Continue to obey the words that I have spoken to you. If you do that, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know what is really true. And that will make you free.’ 33 They answered him, ‘We belong to Abraham's family. We have never been anyone's slaves. But you say that we will become free. What do you mean?’

34 Jesus answered them, ‘I tell you this: Everyone who does wrong things is a slave to sin. 35 A slave does not belong to a family for ever. But a son does belong to a family for ever. 36 So, if the Son makes you free, you will really be free. 37 I know that you belong to Abraham's family. But you are looking for a way to kill me. That is because you have no place in yourselves for my words. 38 I speak about the things that my Father has shown me. You also do what you have heard from your father.’

39 They answered, ‘Abraham is our father!’ Jesus replied, ‘If you were really Abraham's children, you would do the same kind of things that he did. 40 I have told you the true message that I have heard from God. But you want to kill me. Abraham did not do anything like that! 41 You do the same things that your own father does.’ They said to him, ‘God himself is our only Father, and we are his proper sons!’

42 Jesus said to them, ‘If God was really your Father, you would love me. I came from God and now I am here with you. I did not come on my own behalf, but God sent me. 43 Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot really accept my message. 44 You belong to your father, the Devil. And you want to do the things that he wants. From the beginning, he has been someone who murders people. He has not continued with what is true. There is nothing true in him. When he tells lies, he is showing what he is really like. He speaks with lies. He is the father of all lies. 45 As for me, I tell you what is true. And that is why you do not believe me. 46 None of you can show that I have done anything wrong. You should believe me, because I am telling you God's true message. 47 Someone who belongs to God accepts God's message. But you do not belong to God. That is why you do not accept his message.’

48 The Jews answered him, ‘What we say about you is right! You are from Samaria and you have a demon in you!’ 49 Jesus replied, ‘There is no demon in me. I want people to know how great my Father is. But you want people to think bad things about me. 50 I myself do not want people to praise me. But there is someone who wants people to praise me. He is the one who decides if I am right. 51 I tell you this: Anyone who obeys my words will never die.’ 52 The Jews said, ‘Now we know that a demon lives in you! Abraham and all the prophets died. But you say, “Anyone who obeys my words will never die!” 53 You cannot be greater than our father Abraham, and he died! You cannot be greater than the prophets, and they all died! Who do you think that you are?’

8:48‘You are from Samaria’. They were saying Jesus was not a Jew

54 Jesus replied, ‘If I myself wanted people to praise me, that would be worth nothing. But it is my Father who wants that. And you say that he is your God. 55 You have never really known him, but I know him. I might say, “I do not know him.” But then I would be telling a lie. So, I would be like you. But I do know him, and I obey his words. 56 Your ancestor Abraham knew that I would come at some time. He was happy to know that he would see that time. He did see that time, and he was very happy.’

57 The Jews said, ‘You are not 50 years old yet. But you say that you have seen Abraham!’ 58 Jesus said, ‘I tell you this: Before Abraham was even born, “I am”.’ 59 Then they picked up stones. They wanted to throw them at him and kill him. But Jesus hid himself from them. He went away from God's Great House.

8:58The Jews used ‘I am’ as the name of God. When Jesus said, ‘I am,’ they would have recognized this name. Jesus was saying that he is God.