21 Then Jesus said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.” 22 So the Jews said, “Will He kill Himself, because He says, ‘Where I go you cannot come’?”
Then Jesus said to them again,
Jesus turned again to His central message by issuing a warning about the eternal destiny of those listening to Him.
“Again” harks back to John 7:33-34, where Jesus made a similar statement.
“I am going away,
In about six months Jesus would no longer be around to communicate with people. He would go into the presence of His Father after His crucifixion. This world was not His home. He had a super-ordinary abode.
and you will seek Me,
There would come a time after they crucified Him when they would realize that Jesus might be the Messiah, but He would not be there to be the “light” for them.
and will die in your sin.
The “sin” here refers to rejection of Christ. There would come a time at the point of their death that they would die without being converted to the Messiah. The singular “sin” means they would have a fixed attitude of unbelief toward the Son of God. These people would die out of their inward depravity expressed by negative volition toward Christ.
Where I go you cannot come.”
Jesus made it clear that the time for deciding for Him was now. It would be too late when He was gone. They could not come into the presence of the Father in heaven. They could not go into the presence of God, who is absolutely righteous.
So the Jews said,
The Jews missed the point of Jesus’ verdict upon their souls. Instead, they debated what Jesus meant by His departure.
“Will He kill Himself,
The Jews ridiculed Jesus, saying that He would commit suicide. They did not understand a thing He said.
because He says, ‘Where I go you cannot come’?”
The Jews’ comment was scornful. Judaism taught that a person who committed suicide would not go to heaven.
Rejection of Christ catapults people into hell.
Most people miss many opportunities to receive Christ. There is no excuse for unbelief. Each person bears the responsibility for his or her decisions. Those who reject Christ will suffer an eternal consequence. That consequence is eternal separation from God.
Many seek Christ today but they do not seek Him on His terms. They do it their own way rather than God’s way. They may be earnest but they are earnestly wrong. They will seek Christ in vain.