40 Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, "Truly this is the Prophet." 41 Others said, "This is the Christ." But some said, "Will the Christ come out of Galilee? 42 Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?" 43 So there was a division among the people because of Him. 44 Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him. 45 Then the officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, "Why have you not brought Him?" 46 The officers answered, "No man ever spoke like this Man!" 47 Then the Pharisees answered them, "Are you also deceived? 48 Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him? 49 But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed." 50 Nicodemus (he who came to Jesus by night, being one of them) said to them, 51 "Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing?" 52 They answered and said to him, "Are you also from Galilee? Search and look, for no prophet has arisen out of Galilee." 53 And everyone went to his own house.
Questions to Consider:
The people of Israel were divided as to who Jesus was. It reminds me of how polarized politics can become. That is true in our time and it was true in the time of Jesus' public ministry. As in many political struggles for power, truth takes a back seat to objectives and goals.
Many people were convinced that Jesus was the Christ. Jesus being the Christ did not meet the political goals of the Pharisees and chief priests. They wanted to maintain the status quo that gave them some power to rule. They decided to sow seeds that would undermine Jesus' reputation. And so they lied.
Their narrative went something like this: "Jesus is from Galilee. No prophet has ever come out of Galilee. And the Messiah most certainly will not come from Galilee." They repeated this narrative over and over again. Of course, the narrative was not true. The Truth: Jesus came from the seed of David and was born in Bethlehem. He fulfilled the prophetic word concerning the birth of the Christ.
The officers sent to arrest Jesus came back to the chief priests empty handed. The officers were impressed with Jesus and the Pharisees accused them of being deceived.
Nicodemus took a public stand for Jesus, which would have been very unpopular with his fellow Pharisees. He argued with logic: v.51 "Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing?" They fired back at Nicodemus and stuck to their patently false narrative.
Lead Teaching Elder: