48 Then the Jews answered and said to Him, “Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?” 49 Jesus answered, “I do not have a demon; but I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me. 50 And I do not seek My own glory; there is One who seeks and judges.
Verses 48 through 59 record another conflict between Jesus and the Jewish religious leaders. This culminates the argument that began at verse 12. The disagreement reached a climax in this section. The Jews now sought to discredit Jesus in a desperate manner.
Then the Jews answered and said to Him,
The Jews now attempted to affront Jesus with a personal attack and with a double slur against Him. Their ugly hostility came from Jesus’ accusation against them that their father was the devil (Jn 8:44).
“Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan
The name Samaritan was a derisive term. There was a deep hatred between the Jews and the Samaritans. The latter were half-Jew and half-Gentile, half-breeds. They also had their own canon of Scripture that was different from the Jews’. Jesus Himself did not personally disregard the Samaritans. He previously reached out to the Samaritan woman (Jn 4:9). He also gave a parable of a “good” Samaritan (Lu 10:25-37).
and have a demon?”
The charge of demon possession included ideas of uncleanness, evil, and insanity. This is interesting since Jesus just charged them with the devil being their father.
Jesus did not attempt to justify Himself. He ignored their insults as unworthy of a reply.
“I do not have a demon;
This is a calm response to these religious leaders. Jesus simply made a statement of fact that He did not have a demon.
but I honor My Father,
Jesus personally honored the Father. A person who honors the Father cannot be demon possessed.
and you dishonor Me.
Jesus denied that the Jews had a right to claim God as their Father. They dishonored the Father by dishonoring the Son. Their insults against the Father’s messenger was an insult against Him. Jesus’ opponents dishonored their very own God. If a person does not honor the Son, he does not honor the Father who sent Him (Jn 5:23).
And I do not seek My own glory;
It was not necessary for Jesus to vindicate His honor because the Father would do that for Him. Jesus did not come for a self-serving purpose. He came to do the Father’s purpose. The implication is that Jesus’ opponents were seeking their own glory.
there is One who seeks and judges.
Jesus committed Himself to the true Judge. The Father would deal with those who charged Jesus falsely. What others might think was immaterial to Jesus. The Father would make the final judgment between Jesus and His accusers. His glory is the ultimate vindication against those who slander Him. The Father will sit in judgment on Jesus’ enemies.
Jewish law asserted that to reject a person’s agent is to reject the one who sent the agent. There is a fearful consequence to dishonoring the Father and rejecting Christ.
It is not necessary to vindicate ourselves in every respect.
When Jesus was reviled, He reviled not again:
1 Pe 2:23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;
How unlike the Savior we are. As soon as someone starts a rumor about us, we get on our high horse. Our backs arch like a cat’s. We show our fangs. We are ready to do battle. If given a chance, we will hang their hide on the wall.
We believe that we need to defend ourselves at the least provocation. Our Lord did not take this approach to life. He left His situation in the Father’s hands.
This does not imply that we are to be totally passive in our relationships. Jesus often confronted those who opposed Him, but He was never vindictive in doing it.