12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life." 13 The Pharisees therefore said to Him, "You bear witness of Yourself; Your witness is not true." 14 Jesus answered and said to them, "Even if I bear witness of Myself, My witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going; but you do not know where I come from and where I am going. 15 You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one. 16 And yet if I do judge, My judgment is true; for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent Me. 17 It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. 18 I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me." 19 Then they said to Him, "Where is Your Father?" Jesus answered, "You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also." 20 These words Jesus spoke in the treasury, as He taught in the temple; and no one laid hands on Him, for His hour had not yet come. 21 Then Jesus said to them again, "I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come." 22 So the Jews said, "Will He kill Himself, because He says, 'Where I go you cannot come'?" 23 And He said to them, "You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."
Questions to Consider:
"You can't have your cake and eat it too," is an English idiom. It means that a person cannot have two incompatible things at the same time. This idiom first appears in a letter from Thomas, Duke of Norfolk, to Thomas Cromwell, rendered as "A man can not have his cake and eat his cake."
This is the point that Jesus was trying to convey to the Pharisees. The two ideas that were incompatible are: 1) You cannot reject me as the Messiah and 2) Have salvation.
Salvation is impossible to achieve without the Savior. Salvation is impossible to achieve by following the Law of Moses. Salvation requires the one sent by the Father.
As Jesus explained this truth to the Pharisees they rejected His claim based on a technicality found in the Law. That any claim must be verified by outside witnesses. At least one outside witness. Jesus referred to God the Father as His witness.
No doubt that the Father is the ultimate witness to have on your side; but convincing the Pharisees of this is like trying to convince a nonbeliever that God (whom they cannot see) is real. In this particular case, the Pharisees would have rejected any witness or series of witness that Jesus would have mentioned. (John the Baptist verified who Jesus was, the 5,000 that Jesus fed believed in who Jesus was, the disciples believed in who Jesus was. The list of human witnesses was a mile long)
Jesus was not willing to "play" the Pharisees game. On the other hand Jesus made very clear what was at stake. v.12 "He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life." v. 21 "I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. v. 24 "If you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."
Jesus was not being hard on the Pharisees, He was simply telling them the truth. Jesus even shared this truth with His own disciples: (John 14:6) Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."
Lead Teaching Elder: