John 12:29 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New TestamentObserve here, 1. The way of God in speaking to his people by a voice in thunder for the greater declaration of his glory and majesty. Thunderings and lightnings usually attended the voice of God, even in consolations, and when he spake comfortably to his own servants.
Oh! how dreadful and terrible then must the voice of God be to his enemies, when he shall come in flaming fire, to render vengeance to them! If there was such dread and terror, such thunderings and lightnings at the giving of the law: Lord! what will there be another day, when thou comest to punish the violation of that law!
Observe, 2. The end why God the Father now spake with an audible voice to Christ his Son: it was for his consolation, and the people's confirmation. His soul being troubled, he stood in need, as Mediator, of comfort from his Father: and the people had here a farther and fuller confirmation of his being the promised and true Messias, that so they might believe in him, This voice came not because of me: that is, not only or chiefly because of me, but to confirm your faith in the belief of this great truth, that I am the Son of God, by whom the Father hath glorified, and will further glorify, his name.
Observe, 3. Our Saviour declares a double effect and fruit of his death and passion.
1. The judgment of this world; Now is the judgment of this world; now shall the prince of this world be cast out.
That is, my death will be the devil's overthrow; will bring down sin, and deliver the world from the tyranny and dominion of sin and Satan.
Thence learn, 1. That Satan is the prince and ruler of all those who live in sin; not a prince by legal right, but by tyrannical usurpation.
2. That this usurper, Satan, will not quit his possession, unless he be cast out.
3. That Christ by his death has cast out Satan, dethroned him, and deprived him of his tyrannical usurpation. Now is the prince of this world cast out; that is, I will shortly by my death deliver the world from the slavery of sin, and dominion of Satan, and particularly from that idolatry, which the greatest part of the world were then in slavery under.
The second effect and fruit of Christ's death which is here declared, is his drawing all men unto him: When I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me.
There is a twofold lifting up of Christ:
the first ignominious, when he was hung upon the cross;
the second glorious, in the preaching of the gospel:
by this he draws all men unto him; that is, by the preaching of the gospel, he calls and invites all persons to himself;
he offers the benefits of his death to all, and gathereth a church to himself out of the Gentile as well as the Jewish world.
Learn, 1. That all persons are naturally unwilling to come to Christ, they must be drawn.
2. That Christ meritoriously by his death, and instrumentally by the preaching of the gospel, draws sinners unto himself.
3. That it is not a few, or small number, but a very great number, consisting both of Jews and Gentiles, bond and free, persons of all nations, all are effectually drawn to Christ, so as savingly to believe in him: but, by the preaching of the gospel, they are called and invited to him, and the benefits of his death are offered to them.
Thus Christ being lifted up upon his cross, and on the pole of his gospel, draws all men unto him; that is, doth what is sufficient to prevail with all men to believe on him, and to render those that do not so, everlastingly inexcusable.
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Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament
William Burkitt (1650 - 1703) was a Church of England clergyman, bible expositor, and devotional writer.
Volume 1: Matthew - John, was published in 1700.
Volume 2: Acts - Revelation was published 1703.