When some of the people in the crowd heard Jesus say this, they said “He is really the Prophet!” Others said “He is the Messiah!” Yet others said “The Messiah can’t come from Galilee, can he? Isn’t the Messiah supposed to be from Bethlehem, where David lived, and be descended from him?” The crowd was divided about who they thought he was. Some of them wanted to grab him, but nobody touched him.
On the final and most important day of the festival of Sukkot, Jesus stood and shouted, “Anyone who is thirsty should come to me and drink! Just like the Scriptures say, anyone who believes in me will have rivers of living water flowing from their very center.”
He was talking about the Holy Spirit, which his believers were going to receive. The Spirit had not been received yet because Jesus hadn’t yet gone to his glory in heaven.
Some of the citizens of Jerusalem were talking amongst themselves, saying “Isn’t this the person the authorities want to kill? But look here, he’s openly speaking and they aren’t saying anything to him. Is it possible that the authorities know he is the Messiah? But we know where he comes from. Nobody will know where the Messiah is from when he arrives.”
While Jesus was teaching in the Temple complex, he yelled “You know me, and you know where I come from. Yet I didn’t come here on my own, but you can trust the One who sent me. You don’t know the One who sent me. I know him because he sent me and I am from him.”
Then the authorities tried to grab him, but they were not able to even touch him because it wasn’t his time. However, many people in the crowd believed he was the Messiah, and said “When he finally comes, the Messiah couldn’t possibly perform more miracles than this man has, could he?”
The Pharisees heard what the crowd was saying about him, so they and the chief priests sent the Temple police to arrest him.
Jesus said “I am only going to be here among you for a little while. Then I will return to the One who sent me. You will search for me, but you won’t find me, and where I’ll be, you can’t go.”
Then the Jewish authorities said to themselves, “Where does he think he can go where we can’t find him? He doesn’t plan on going to where some Jews have spread out to Greece and teach the Greeks, does he? What did he mean when he said ‘You will search for me, but you won’t find me, and where I’ll be, you can’t go’?”
Jesus secretly went up to Jerusalem to attend the festival of Sukkot after his brothers left. The Jewish authorities were on the lookout for him there, asking “Where is he?” The crowds were actively talking about him. Some thought he was good, while others thought he was leading people astray. However, nobody was openly talking about him because they were afraid of the Jewish authorities.
Halfway through the festival, Jesus began to teach in the Temple complex. The Jewish authorities were astonished and wondered “How can he know the Scriptures when he has never been taught?”
Jesus answered them “What I teach doesn’t come from me, but from the One who sent me. If anyone wants to do the will of God, he’ll know whether what I say is from God or from me. Anyone who presents his own ideas is seeking glory for himself. However, he who seeks to give glory to the One who sent him speaks only the truth and is free from unrighteousness. Moses gave you the Law, yet none of you keep it! Why do you want to put me to death?”
The crowd shouted “You are possessed by a demon! Who wants to put you to death?”
Jesus answered “I did one miracle and you all were stunned. Think about this: Moses taught you the mitzvah of circumcision – not like Moses invented it, because it came from our forefathers – and you perform circumcisions on men on the Sabbath. If a man is circumcised on the Sabbath to uphold the Law of Moses, then why are you angry with me because I healed a man on the Sabbath? Don’t judge based on outward appearances. Instead, judge based on what is righteous.”