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John 5

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25 "Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.

 

Commentary

Jesus emphasizes and makes concrete the statements He has just made in verse 24.  Jesus calls the dead to life, and His voice can be no other than the voice of God:  "Incline your ear and come to Me.  Listen, that you may live" (Isaiah 55:3).  The same voice who shall call the physically dead to life on the Last Day now calls the spiritually dead to spiritual life.  The phrase "an hour is coming and now is" points to both future and present action - those who heard His words passed immediately into eternal spiritual life, and this promise extends to us, who "hear" His voice 2000 years removed, from the pen of the Fourth Evangelist, carried along, as he was, by the Spirit of Truth.

 

The phrase "and has now come" may refer to the present era that will terminate in the return of Christ and the resurrection of the dead, or it may refer to the power Jesus had to raise the dead during his lifetime, as in the case of Lazarus. There is another sense in which our Lordís words are true. As the source of life, he was promising to those who were spiritually dead, like the woman at the well, a new and eternal life if they would listen to his voice  (EBC).

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