JOHN 5 : 21- 30


5.21 For as the Father raises up the dead, and quickens them; even so the Son quickens whom he will.
5.22 For the Father judges no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
5.23 That all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He that honors not the Son honors not the Father which hath sent him.
5.24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that hears my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
5.25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.
5.26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
5.27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.
5.28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
5.29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
5.30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.


The Investigative Judgment in the Book of John

As we look at the fifth chapter of John we see the themes of God’s life giving power, and the theme of judgment. This could very well indicate that the feast Jesus and His disciples attended at this point in time was the feast of trumpets, as many of Jesus sermons were connected to the symbolism of the festivals. The feast of trumpets was a feast that took place ten days before the solemn Day of Atonement which is the type for the investigative judgment.

Trumpets are associated with judgment and also the second coming of Christ to raise the dead and gather His children from all corners of the earth to go home with Him. (Lev. 23:23-25; Rev. 8:1-9, 11:15; 1 Thess. 4:16 ; I Cor. 15:51-52; Matt. 24:31; Zeph. 1:14-18; Zech. 9:14)

The chapter begins with a story of Christ’s restorative power when He “made whole” the man by the pool of Bethesda. “Behold, you are made whole: sin no more,” he is told by Jesus.

Now we reach Christ’s dialogue on the judgment.

Who will be given eternal life is the unwritten question being here answered.

5:21 -The Father and the Son will give back life to whom they will.

But not without a fair judgement first.

So who makes the decisions?

5:22–The Father gives judgment to Christ

Yes, Christ is our judge. Other verses say the same thing. (Acts 10:42; 17:31, Romans 2:16; 2 Timothy 4:2; 4:8) Yet the Father and Son work together in this. For the verses before this say “The Son does nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do.” (5:19) Further in the book Jesus says, “My judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me. It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true.” (8:16,17)

This corresponds to the great investigative judgment scene in Daniel 7 where the “Ancient of Days takes His seat, the books are opened, the court is seated, and the Son of Man comes with clouds to the ancient of Days. They do work together in judgment.

5:23–The call is given to honour Christ (how do we honour Christ?)

Isaiah tells us in plain words that honouring God is more than just words.

Isaiah 29.13-15

Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their honor toward me is taught by the commandments of men: ….the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who sees us? and who knows us?

Yes, in the judgment the councils of men cannot replace the commandments of God. We honour and love Him by following Him with heartfelt obedience to His law. Jesus Himself, used this verse in conjunction with the keeping of the ten commandments in Matt. 15:3-9. Saying, in vain people worship Him when they set aside God’s commandments and replace them with the commandments of men. In vain — vain worship will not pass in the judgment. Only true worship.

5:24–He that hears (and does) Christ’s word

(compare with Matt. 7:21,24,26; Luke 6:47,49) Where Jesus tells us that he who hears His sayings and does them, will be like a house that stands through the storm, and he who hears and does not do them, will be like a house that crashes in the storm. “For not everyone that says Lord, Lord, will enter into the kingdom, but he that does the will of God in heaven.”

5:24 —He that hears Christ’s word and believes will not come into condemnation

in the judgment.

Daniel 7.22, in that great investigative judgment chapter, tells us “and judgment was given in favor of the saints.” The saints are vindicated. The little horn representing the counterfeit Christian power, the “false and often tyrannical religious professions” are destroyed.

That is the investigative judgment

Now comes the executive judgment

5:27– The Father…has given him (CHRIST) authority to execute judgment ALSO.

5:29– They that have done good will be raised in the resurrection of life.

Compare with Revelation 14:13

Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from now on: they may rest and their works do follow them.

Revelation 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that takes part in the first resurrection: on such the second death has no power.

This first resurrection is the grand trumpet that awakens the sleeping saints and we all rise together to meet our Lord and Savior in the air.

5:29– They that have done evil will be raised in the resurrection of damnation.

Revelation 20 says the rest of the dead live not until the 1000 years are over. Then they rise and try to take God’s city by force. But fire comes down from heaven to destroy them. Revelation calls this the second death.

But before the second death, there is a final scene of judgment, before the white throne where God reveals His justice to them as to why they could not be in that glorious city.

God does nothing in secret. He lays everything out in the open so all may see His justice in dealing with sin. Before He executes judgment at the second coming, He investigates. Before He executes the final judgment, He again makes plain to all, the justice of the act which must be performed to cleanse the earth of sin forever.

5.30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

Yes, ever knee will bow and acknowledge God’s justice. His judgment is just, we can depend upon that.

The understanding of a just and fair court case brings assurance to the hearts of Christ’s true followers. As long as our lives are hid in Christ and we are abiding in Him and bringing forth the obedient fruits this abiding produces, we have nothing to fear. But apart from Christ condemnation is equally certain.

Spiritual Resurrection Ensures Physical Resurrection

“Do you want to be made whole?” That is the question that springs forth from John 5:6. “Do we want to be made whole?”

“Do you want to be made whole?” That was the question asked of a man who lay paralyzed. His disease could be directly linked to his former sinful lifestyle, which brought not only the pain of physical disability, but also the distress of guilt and spiritual hopelessness.

“Do you want to be made whole?” These words filled the paralyzed man with rush of hope. Maybe, there was something better for him after all. But then the reality that he had been ill for 38 years and no one had been able to help, caused the flicker of hope to fade. “Sir,” he said wearily, “I have no man to help me.”

Here was the problem, he had been looking to human devises to seek wholeness.

But the One asking the question, “Do you want to be made whole?” is no ordinary man. This is the Son of God. And the Son of God has power to forgive sins. The Son of God has power to say “Arise and walk.” The Son of God has power to make sinners whole and say to them “Behold, see, you have been made whole, sin no more, lest a worst thing come upon you.”

We, just like that paralyzed man by the pool, have been paralyzed— Paralyzed? you ask, but I’m not paralyzed, I walked here to today! Yes, we have been paralyzed. We have been paralyzed by sin. Of ourselves we are no more capable of living a holy life than was that paralyzed man at the pool capable of walking.

Jesus stands over us asking, “Do you want to be made whole?”

This is the Saviour of whom Paul writes in Eph. 2:1-6. “And you has he quickened, [given life], you who were dead in trespasses and sins.”

Yes we were paralyzed in sin, where in time past we walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience;”

“BUT GOD” there are those words again, we encounter them again and again in Paul’s writings. Things appear to be totally hopeless “BUT GOD” changes the picture. We don’t have to be paralyzed in sin “BECAUSE GOD” “who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins has quickened us [given us life] together with Christ.”

The spirit of life in Christ Jesus, the power of His resurrection, sets people free from the law of sin and death which reigns in their members. The dominion of evil is broken. Satan cannot hold the spiritually dead in his grasp when the son of God bids them live. He cannot hold in spiritual death one soul who in faith receives Christ’s word of power. Jesus says to all who are dead in sin, “Awake you that sleep, and arise from the dead and Christ will give you light! (Ephesians 5:14)

Just like that paralyzed man we need to look up to Jesus. He says to us, “arise and walk”. Do we now stay down and wait to feel that we are made whole. No, believe His word, and it will be fulfilled. Put your will on the side of Christ. Just like that paralyzed man, at the word of Jesus, got up from his mat and walked believing he had new life. So we need to get up and believe that Christ will give life to the person who is “dead in sins”, paralyzed by sin. He will forgive, and He will break the chains of sin which bind us, if we just act upon His commands. “All who look upon Jesus in faith that the wounds and bruises that sin has made will be healed in him, shall be made whole.

This is what I term the spiritual resurrection. Those who partake of the spiritual resurrection will also partake of the physical resurrection when Christ comes to take His children home. They will not come into condemnation when the judgment sits and the books are opened, for they have been made whole, Spiritually made alive to live for Christ.

Let’s look at John 5 a little closer. The story of healing of the paralyzed man introduces the chapter. But now lets read verse 25 [John 5:25]

Jesus says, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is…..”

Wait a minute, this is something interesting that John does repeatedly in His gospel story. “It is coming and it is….” How can something be coming that already has arrived?

Again and again we see John telling us that the future reality has a present spiritual application as well. Jesus says, “most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is when the dead will hear the voice of the son of God; and those who hear will live.”

When will the dead hear Christ’s voice and live? Could the time that NOW IS have a direct relationship with the hour that is coming?

The hour that is coming is found in verse 28 where it says, “the hour is coming in which all who are in the grave will hear His voice and come forth-those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.” That is the hour that is coming.

Now who is it that receives the resurrection of life, in that hour that is coming? Is it not those who have received the spiritual resurrection which Christ wants us to have in the hour that NOW IS? Is it not those who, in newness of life, walk with Christ and DO GOOD? Is that not what the passage is saying?

Romans 6 gives us a graphic example of the spiritual resurrection when it says, the old man of sin, [that is the carnal sinful nature], is crucified with Christ, we are buried with Christ into His death [we symbolize this by baptism]. That means the old sinful ways are done away with , that body which was dead in sins, must be buried, just as Christ was buried, and just as Christ rose from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

Yes, JUDGMENT WILL COME. CHRIST HAS BEEN APPOINTED OUR JUDGE and His Judgment is just. For HE has provided the means by which we will not come into condemnation, if we come to Him, Who is the source of all life– both spiritual and physical.

The hour that IS NOW is the TODAY of each individual. “Today, if you will hear His voice, harden not your hearts…do not err in your heart, but know my ways…Exhort one another DAILY, while it is Today, lest any be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end; Today if you will hear His voice harden not your hearts….(Heb. 3:7-15)

Like the man at the pool, look up and respond to the voice of Jesus. For He will make you whole and He will also say, as He said to the man at the pool, “Go and sin no more.”

John in another book writes:

My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you sin not. If you do sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, by this we may be sure that we know Him, if we obey His commandments. 1 John 2:1-3


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