Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. Jesus cried and said, He that believeth on me, believeth not on me, but on him that sent me.
Joh 12:43 - For they loved the praise of men,.... To be in the esteem of men, to have their applause, and receive honour from them:
more than the praise of God; than either to receive honour from him, and be praised by him, or to praise and glorify him. By confessing Christ they knew they should run the risk of losing their places of honour and profit, and of falling under the disgrace and contempt of men; and therefore they chose rather not to confess Christ, than by so doing to glorify God, and please him, and be praised by him, as all the faithful professors of Christ will be at the last day; for then every such an one will have praise of God, and it will be said, well done good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of thy Lord.
- Gill's Commentary
They loved the praise of men - Δοξαν, the glory or honor that cometh from men.
How common are these four obstacles of faith! says Quesnel:
1. Too great a regard to men.
2. Riches and temporal advantages.
3. The fear of disgrace.
4. The love of the praise of men.
Abundance of persons persuade themselves that they love God more than the world, till some trying occasion fully convinces them of their mistake. It is a very great misfortune for a person not to know himself but by his falls; but it is the greatest of all not to rise again after he has fallen. This is generally occasioned by the love of the praise of men, because in their account it is more shameful to rise again than it was to fall at first.
- Clarke's Commentary
Verses 37-43 Observe the method of conversion implied here. Sinners are brought to see the reality of Divine things, and to have some knowledge of them. To be converted, and truly turned from sin to Christ, as their Happiness and Portion. God will heal them, will justify and sanctify them; will pardon their sins, which are as bleeding wounds, and mortify their corruptions, which are as lurking diseases. See the power of the world in smothering convictions, from regard to the applause or censure of men. Love of the praise of men, as a by-end in that which is good, will make a man a hypocrite when religion is in fashion, and credit is to be got by it; and love of the praise of men, as a base principle in that which is evil, will make a man an apostate, when religion is in disgrace, and credit is to be lost for it. Verses 44-50 Our Lord publicly proclaimed, that every one who believed on him, as his true disciple, did not believe on him only, but on the Father who sent him. Beholding in Jesus the glory of the Father, we learn to obey, love, and trust in him. By daily looking to Him, who came a Light into the world, we are more and more freed from the darkness of ignorance, error, sin, and misery; we learn that the command of God our Saviour is everlasting life. But the same word will seal the condemnation of all who despise it, or neglect it.
- Henry's Commentary