The Gospel According to John

Chapter 12

Jesus excuses Mary anointing his feet, 1-8. The people flock to see Lazarus, 9. The chief priests consult to kill him, 10, 11. Christ rides into Jerusalem, 12-19. Greeks desire to see Jesus, 20-22. He foretells his death, 23-36. The Jews are generally blinded, 37-41; yet many chief rulers believe, but do not confess him, 42, 43; therefore Jesus calls earnestly for confession of faith, 44-50.

1 Then Jesus, six days before the passover, came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, who had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. 2 There they made him a supper, and Martha served. And Lazarus was one of those who sat at the table with him. 3 Then Mary took a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair, and the house was filled with the odor of the ointment. 4 Then one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, who was to betray him, says, 5 "Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?" 6 He said this, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and having the money-box he took away what was put in it. 7 Then Jesus said, "Leave her alone. She has kept this for the day of my burial. 8 For you always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me."

9 Many people of the Jews therefore knew that he was there. And they came, not for Jesus' sake only, but so that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 But the chief priests consulted that they might also put Lazarus to death, 11 Because by reason of him many of the Jews went away and believed in Jesus.

12 On the next day, many people who had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 Took branches of palm-trees and went forth to meet him, and cried,

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord,
even the King of Israel."

14 And Jesus, when he had found a young donkey, sat thereon, as it is written,

15 "Do not fear, daughter of Zion./
Behold, your King comes,/
sitting on a donkey's colt.

16 These things his disciples did not understand at the first, but when Jesus was glorified, they remembered that these things were written concerning him and that they had done these things to him. 17 Therefore, the people who were with him when he called Lazarus out of his grave and raised him from the dead, bore testimony. 18 For this cause the people also met him, for they heard that he had done this miracle. 19 The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, "Do you perceive how you prevail nothing? Behold, the world has gone after him."

20 And there were some Greeks among them who came to worship at the feast. 21 The same came therefore to Philip, who was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, "Sir, we wish to see Jesus." 22 Philip comes and tells Andrew, and again, Andrew and Philip tell Jesus. 23 And Jesus answered them, saying, "The hour has come that the Son of man should be glorified. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone. But if it dies, it brings forth much fruit. 25 He who loves his life shall lose it, and he who hates his life in this world shall keep it to life eternal. 26 If any man serves me, let him follow me, and where I am, there my servant shall also be. If any man serves me, my Father will honor him.

27 "Now 'my soul is troubled,' and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour. But for this cause I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name." Then there came a voice from heaven, saying, "I have both glorified it and will glorify it again." 29 Therefore, the people who stood by and heard it said that it thundered. Others said, "An angel spoke to him." 30 Jesus answered and said, "This voice did not come because of me, but for your sakes. 31 Now is the judgment of this world. Now the prince of this world shall be cast out. 32 And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to me." 33 (He said this signifying what death he should die.) 34 The people answered him, "We have heard out of the law that Christ abides forever. How do you say, 'The Son of man must be lifted up'? Who is this Son of man?" 35 Then Jesus said to them, "Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness come upon you. For he who walks in darkness does not know where he goes. 36 While you have light, believe in the light so that you may be the children of light." Jesus spoke these things, departed, and concealed himself from them. 37 But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they did not believe in him, 38 So that the saying of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke,

"Lord, who has believed our report?/
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

39 Therefore, they could not believe, because Isaiah said again,

40 "He has blinded their eyes/
and hardened their heart/
so that they should not see with their eyes,/
nor understand with their heart,/
and be converted, and I should heal them.

41 Isaiah said these things when he saw his glory and spoke of him. 42 Nevertheless, also among the chief rulers many believed in him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue. 43 For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.

44 Jesus cried, and said, "He who believes in me does not believe in me, but in him who sent me. 45 And he who sees me, sees him who sent me. 46 I have come as a light into the world so that whoever believes in me should not abide in darkness. 47 And if any man hears my words and does not believe, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48 He who rejects me and does not receive my words has one who judges him. The word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. 49 For I have not spoken from myself. But the Father who sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say and what I should speak. 50 And I know that his commandment is life everlasting. Whatever I speak therefore, even as the Father said to me, so I speak."


Matthew Henry Commentary - John, Chapter 12[➚]


[v.3-8] - Gospel Link: Matthew 26:6-12; Mark 14:3-8.

[v.6] - "money-box" - Greek: γλωσσόκομον (gloce-sok'-om-on). This word refers to a case, or box, in which to keep mouthpieces of wind-instruments, but it can also refer to a box for other uses, such as a casket or a coffer (i.e. money-box).

[v.12-15] - Gospel Link: Matthew 21:4-9; Mark 11:7-9; Luke 19:35-38.

[v.13] - Quoting Psalm 118:25-26 (LXX—verse 26).

[v.15] - Quoting Zechariah 9:9.

[v.27] - Quoting Psalm 6:3 (LXX—paraphrased). See also Psalm 6:4.

[v.38] - Quoting Isaiah 53:1 (LXX).

[v.40] - Quoting Isaiah 6:10.

[v.40] - Gospel Link: Matthew 13:15; Mark 4:12.