John 5: Bethzatha


@gamiliel on Instagram

Excerpt from my 2004 translation of John’s gospel, which begins at Start With John, along with a brief explanation of my interpretive approach.

My 2012 translation of John’s first epistle begins at John A.

My 2015 translation of John’s second epistle begins at John B.

My 2015 translation of John’s third epistle begins at John Γ.

My 2015 and 2017 translation of Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians begins at To The Thessalonians A.

My 2015 translation of Paul’s letter to The Romans begins at To the Romans.

My 2004 translation of Paul’s first letter to the Korinthians begins at And Now For Something Completely Different….

My 2004 translation of Mark’s gospel begins at Mark 1.

5 1 After this he was in the Judean desert and he went up into Jerusalem. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem a pool by the sheep gate which is called by the Hebrews “Bethzatha,” having five entrance ways. 3 In these [doorways] were lying many disease-weakened individuals, blind, crippled, paralyzed (many later manuscripts, including A, C3, K, X add: for an angel of the lord would descend from time to time and disturb the water in the pool. The first to step in after the disturbance of the water became sound and healthy immediately [being released] from the sickness which was gripping [him]). 5 There was a man who was there for thirty-eight years with his infirmity. 6 Seeing this guy, Jesus knew he had been lying [there] a long time…[Jesus] says to him, “Do you want to be healed?” 7 The sick man answered him, “Master, I do not have a man [to help me] so that when the water is disturbed he might throw me into the pool; and whenever I go, another jumps in before me.” 8 Jesus says to him, “Rise up, take up your recliner and get going [‘walk around’].” 9 And then [א* omits ‘και ευθεως’] the man was healed and he took his recliner and was walking about.

It was the Sabbath that day. 10 So the Judeans said to the one who was healed [θεραπευω], “It is the Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your recliner.” 11 But he answered them back, “The one who healed me said to me, “Carry your recliner and get going.” 12 They asked him, “Who is the man who said this to you, ‘Carry and walk’?” 13 But the healed one did not know who it was, for Jesus withdrew into the large crowd that was in the place. 14 After this, Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “Look, you’re healed; don’t ever sin again lest something worse should happen to you.” 15 The man went and took this message to the Judeans that it was Jesus who healed him. 16 And this is why the Judeans harassed Jesus, because he did this on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered back to them, “My father is taking action at this very moment [εως αρτι – ‘immediacy’] and I also am taking action [implying ‘miraculous’ type action, εργα];” 18 because of this the Judeans sought all the more to kill him, because not only was he ‘loose’ with the Sabbath but he also called god his own father, thereby making himself god.

19 Jesus answered them back and said to them, “Listen carefully, the son is not able to do anything of himself except whatever he happens to see the father doing; for what that one does, this also the son, likewise, does. 20 For the father loves [φιλει] the son [like a close friend] and shows him all things he is doing, and [further], even greater things will he show him than these great miracles so that you will be amazed [you will ‘wonder’]. 21 For, as it were, the father raises one who dies and gives him (eternal) life, so also the son gives (eternal) life to whom he wishes. 22 For the father judges no one, rather, he has given all judgement to the son, 23 so that all will respect the son [τιμαω, ‘to honor,’ ‘value,’ ‘esteem’] as they respect the father. One who does not respect the son does not respect the father who sent him.

24 Listen carefully, the one who hears my word, and believes the one who sent me, has eternal life and he does not come to judgement; rather, he has been converted [‘passed over,’ ‘been carried over’] from death to life. 25 Listen carefully, an hour is coming and it is [indeed] right now, when the dead will hear the voice of the son of god and hearing, they will live. 26 For, as it were, the father has eternal life in himself, so also he has given life to the son to have ‘in himself.’ 27 Further, he has given him [the son] authority to pass judgement because he is a son of man [a ‘human being’]. Do not be amazed by this because an hour is coming when those who are entombed will hear his voice 29 and those who have done good things will come forth to a resurrection of life, but those who have practised wickedness [will come forth] to a resurrection of judgement.

30 I am not able to do anything of myself; as I hear, I judge, and my judgement is necessary [‘expedient,’ as judgement conferring justice] because I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me. 31 If I should testify concerning myself, my testimony is not true; 32 but there is another who testifies concerning me, and I know [some mss., “you know”] that the testimony which he testifies concerning me is true. 34 Now, it is not that I require the testimony of men, but I say this so you will be saved. 33 You yourselves sent to John [the Baptist (in prison)] and he has testified to the truth. 35 He was the fiery and bright lamp, and you were willing to exult for a while in his light. 36 But I have a greater testimony than John, i.e. these miracles which the father has given me to perform, these miracles which I am doing testify concerning me and that the father sent me. 37 So the one who sent me, that father [by miracles] has testified concerning me. But you have never heard his voice nor seen his outward form [his ‘shape,’ how he ‘looks’], 38 and you do not have his word dwelling in you [Jesus is pointing out that their religion was not the same as the actual personal relationship that the slogan implies; he is saying that they had paid nothing but lip service to the ‘word of the lord,’ otherwise they would recognize him, as John, for instance had]. [so]…you do not have his word dwelling in you [either personally or as a community], because you will not believe in the one whom that one [the lord] sent. 39 You are ardent for the scriptures because you think that by them you have eternal life; but these are the thing that testify concerning me; 40 but you do not wish to come to me so that you might have eternal life.

41 I do not receive glory [‘credit’] from men, 42 so I know that you do not have the truth of god in yourselves. 43 I have spoken in the name of my father, but you do not comprehend me; however, if another should come in his own name [i.e., John the Baptist] you comprehend him!

44 How is it that you are able to believe [based on] the attribution of credit received from another [man] but do not investigate (or ‘examine’) the attribution of credit from the only god? 45 Do you not realize that I will denounce you to the father [i.e., ‘in his presence‘ – προς τον]; in fact, the one who denounces you is Moses, in whom you have your hope! 46 For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; because it was about me that he wrote.

47 But if you do not believe the things he wrote [i.e, ‘the scriptures,’ “grammasin” – γραμμασιν] how will you believe my little sayings [“ramasin,” ρημασιν]?”


@gamiliel on Instagram

This translation was taken from The Greek New Testament, Kurt Aland, et. al. eds., Third Edition (corrected), United Bible Societies, (in cooperation with the Institute for New Testament Textual Research, Münster/Westphalia, Printed in West Germany by Biblia-Druck GmbH Stuttgart),1983.

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