St. John's Gospel (05) - He Came to His Father's House
The Word Manifest in St. John’s Gospel (05) - He Came to His House
John 2:12–25 - “After this He went down to Capernaum, He and His mother and His brothers and His disciples; and they stayed there a few days. 13 The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 And He found in the temple those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables . . . Now when He was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in His name, observing His signs which He was doing. 24 But Jesus, on His part, was not entrusting Himself to them, for He knew all men, 25 and because He did not need anyone to testify concerning man, for He Himself knew what was in man.”
Coming Home to Capernaum (v12). This passage begins with the ministry of Jesus in Capernaum and then in Jerusalem. Jesus went home with his mother and his brothers and stayed a few days. It seems that Mary believed but his brothers evidently did not believe (including James). Jesus came home and they did not believe.
Coming Home to His Father’s House (vv13-22). Why does St. John link Jesus with His family to the temple cleansing? The background passage is actually Psalm 69 which is cited in verse 17. Psalm 69 provides the connection to the family and the temple. “I have become estranged from my brothers and an alien to my mother’s sons. For zeal for Your house has consumed me” (Ps. 69:8ff). Here is the contrast between the home of Jesus (Capernaum) and House of Jesus (Jerusalem). St. John shows the first cleansing of the temple and the Synoptics (Matt. 21) report His final inspection, prior to tearing the House down completely in 70 A.D. (Lev. 14:33-47; Ez. 8-11). In John 2, temple authorities demand to see proof of His prophetic credentials in a sign (Dt. 18). Jesus’s prophetic-sign is the most profound of all, but they do not recognize it. He comes home to His Father’s House, but finds it filled with strangers, disrupting the purpose of the House.
Coming Home to His Followers (vv23-25). Finally, the passage shows Jesus coming to His early followers. Because of His ministry in Jerusalem during this time, many “believed” due to the signs He was doing. However, Jesus did not entrust Himself to them, literally He did not “believe in them.” He knew what was in man. He saw into Peter and Nathaneal and in these thrill seeking, sign-mongering followers. He came to His followers and they received Him not.
Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more