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2.15 John -- Prophecy of Death

The news of this miracle spread to Jerusalem and caused consternation among the leaders.  They feared Jesus would spark a popular uprising, which would inevitably lead to military intervention by the Romans.  To prevent this imagined catastrophe, Caiaphas proposed that Jesus be killed:

          "You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish" (Jn 11:50).

           John believed that Caiaphas, as high priest, was unwittingly foretelling the significance of Jesus' death.

           "He did not say this on his own, but as high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the Jewish nation, and not only for that nation but also for the scattered children of God, to bring them together and make them one.   So from that day on they plotted to take his life" (Jn 11:51-53).


If the teaching and miracles of Jesus' life served to separate sheep from goats and light from darkness, Jesus' death was the Act that would lay the foundation of the Kingdom of God among men.  This event would put an end to the Old Covenant, and at the same time inaugurate the new people of God, uniting believers of different backgrounds and ethnicities into one spiritual fellowship in place of political Israel.  John's statement here is one of the building blocks of a Christian approach to race.  The death of Jesus affected all humanity, and provided people a means to be redeemed out of their birth culture and to be joined to Christ and to other believers in a bond maintained not by human organization but by the Holy Spirit.

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