The Feast of the Tabernacles was an 8 day festival. John tells us that Jesus waits until the Feast was halfway over before He went to teach in the temple. This means that it was about 4-5 days into the Feast.
Why do you think that Jesus waited?
Several Old Testament passages will come in handy here to help us understand:
The whole company that had returned from exile built booths and lived in them. From the days of Joshua son of Nun until that day, the Israelites had not celebrated it like this. And their joy was very great. Day after day, from the first day to the last, Ezra read from the Book of the Law of God. They celebrated the feast for seven days, and on the eighth day, in accordance with the regulation, there was an assembly.
The intent of the Feast of the Tabernacles was to celebrate and teach the instruction of the Lord. However, the teaching turned into instruction of men and impartial instruction of the Lord.
Jesus recognized this and was led by the Lord to give the Lord’s teachings and to do so in full.
Prophecies foretold of this:
Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame. He who vindicates me is near. Who then will bring charges against me? Let us face each other! Who is my accuser? Let him confront me!
I will save my flock, and they will no longer be plundered. I will judge between one sheep and another. I will place over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he will tend them; he will tend them and be their shepherd.
“See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the Lord Almighty.
We are reminded that Jesus was not formally taught and did not attend a Rabbi school. Where did He learn His letters?
Coming to his hometown, he began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were amazed. “Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?” they asked.
Jesus confirms that His doctrine/teaching is from “Him who sent me.” Who is Jesus referring to?
His teaching comes from God.
So what do we know about His doctrine?
His doctrine was divine
Tells us that
The competent ones
True teachers of truth and divine authority of Christ’s doctrine are those that are sincere and upright about doing the will of God.
Doing God’s will upholds the Teaching of Christ because they are the same teaching. Is the doctrine you follow of God or of man? Truth or deception?
In writing on this verse, Oswald Chambers in MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST, wrote, “The golden rule to follow in order to obtain spiritual understanding is not of intellectual pursuit, but one of obedience.”
Some characteristics of a Deceiver:
They speak of themselves
They seek their on glory
They have no instruction from God but give their own will; inspired by their own imagination, their own policy
On the other hand, those that teach the doctrine of God as Jesus:
Sent by God
Seek the glory only of the One that sent Him
The proof is no self-rightousness, no falsehood in doctrine, no fraud in dealing with those whom He taught
Refers to Moses and the law set forth by him:
he said to them, “Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law.
Jesus sternly says to them, “Yet none of you keep it.”
Then throws in the interjection: “Why are you trying to kill me?”
Jesus is interrupted here by the leaders calling Him “demon-possessed.”
people deny the wickedness that the same time they are contriving
ever been around a drug addict that says they don’t have a problem?
the people had so much faith in their religious rulers that they would never dream that they would be conspiring to kill Jesus
They say He is bad for even thinking so
In fact, He is accused of being like those which He healed by driving demons out
Jesus refers to a miracle that took place on a sabbath as recorded in where the invalid was healed.
Jesus makes a point that the people were astonished about the miracle.
Then, Jesus mentions the Hebrew rite of circumcision.
The Hebrew custom was that the male would be circumcised on the 8th day, no matter if it that 8th day was on a sabbath or not.
If the rite of circumcision could override the sabbath rules. why couldn’t a miraculous healing from God Himself for a man that desperately needed healing override those rules?
Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment.”
Jesus wants the people to ignore the fancy robes and big hats of the religious leaders and compare their deeds to scripture. The deeds of Jesus reflect the Grace of God and did not violate the sabbath.
Questions to consider:
What man-made rules do you have that get in the way of God’s grace?
How are you following the will of God and the teachings of Christ and are you able to discern who speaks for God and who does not?