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John 6:44

John 6:44

Postby remade » Thu May 18, 2017 10:48 pm

Perhaps this has been a verse addressed already in this forum, but after looking through a few of the first few pages, I didn't find anything I thought related specifically to this above verse. In John 6:44, Jesus says in context:

41 So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42 They said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?” 43 Jesus answered them, “Do not grumble among yourselves. 44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. 45 It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me— 46 not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. 47 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life.


Jesus goes on to use the word "whoever," throughout his discussion, and then uses a similar phrase to 6:44 in

JOHN 6:53-55

53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.


The verse in question though, would the Arminian argue that "God draws ALL people to Jesus" in conjunction with verse 54, "Whoever feeds on my flesh?"

But the question then is, is that Jesus is promises to raise the one drawn to him on the last day... I don't know, anyways, any thoughts in terms of the Calvinism / Arminianism debate?
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- II CORINTHIANS 5:21 ESV
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Re: John 6:44

Postby dwilkins » Fri May 19, 2017 12:29 am

In my opinion, this passage is regularly misinterpreted due to a failure to understand the Apostalic implications and the particular moment in which the advice was given. Early in Jesus' ministry there were a number of people trying to become followers who were not marked out by God to do so. They did so for various reasons, but God had predestined a certain group of people to be the cadre of Christ and to found the new covenant people of God. They were all predestined to be martyred (Romans 8, Eph 1, Rev. 6, and Rev. 20) and were set apart to be the leadership through which God would control the course of history. It wasn't up to those on the hilltops to decide who would be this cadre. It was up to Christ, who chose from them those who were predestined to do so. After this discourse he turns to those who've stuck with him (those who'd been chosen after all) and pushed forward to teach them how to lead his church. He told them that none of them would be lost. In the High Priestly prayer of John 17 he celebrates the fact that none of them were in fact lost. In the arrest scene of John 18 he asks that the 11 left (one was prophesied to betray him, and so was an explicit exception) to be let go so that the prophecy would be fulfilled that none of them would be lost (killed) during his ministry:

Joh 18:7  So he asked them again, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” 
Joh 18:8  Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. So, if you seek me, let these men go.” 
Joh 18:9  This was to fulfill the word that he had spoken: “Of those whom you gave me I have lost not one.” 

After his ascension and session, these leaders started to die. The Church had been established and would now continue to grow without them. The promise that they would not be lost expired when it was no longer necessary. All of the 11 left would die as martyrs (I reject that John lived to 90+AD).

The common mistake is to make scripture apply to every single person in history, and to every era of history. We can draw principles from moral lessons in it, but just because a promise was made doesn't mean it applies to absolutely every person literally. Jesus' leadership cadre was promised that it they would be raised in the last day, and no one could become one of them unless the Father predestined it.

It's much less complicated than we tend to make it.

Doug
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Re: John 6:44

Postby remade » Fri May 19, 2017 6:51 pm

Doug-

That is an interesting theory, and not outside the realm of possibility. But the reference to John 6:44, and 54 is an obvious reference to salvation and eternal life, "Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day,". Also, the inclusivity of "whoever," suggests a broader audience than the 12 disciples.

I would also argue that John 6:54 is in a broader section obviously about Jesus being the source of salvation, as most Bibles point to that section of Scripture called "I am the bread of life." Thus, I don't know, I think I might disagree with your theory to apply to this particular Scripture.

Interestingly enough, there is the same idea of inclusivity in John 6:37, " All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out," which is rather interesting when coupled with "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day," (John 6:44).

Are there any other possible interpretations besides Doug's theory? Just interested.

PS - I've been also thinking of Jesus's words in John 10,

11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.

... 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father's name bear witness about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”


It seems to me that Jesus is referring to a people picked out by God. It seems to me too, that Jesus is referring to salvation, "other sheep not of this fold," obviously referring to Gentiles. Thoughts? Am I just reading into the text here?
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
- II CORINTHIANS 5:21 ESV
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Re: John 6:44

Postby TruthInLove » Fri May 19, 2017 8:15 pm

Hi remade,

It's been helpful for me to think of it this way.

Only people who come to God of their own free will are God's. God gives Christ all of those who are God's to give. People come first to God by listening and obeying.
If someone has truly done this, then God draws them to Christ.

That's why I think Christ followed this up by quoting Isaiah 54:13 and saying "Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me." Is that helpful at all?

Carmine
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Re: John 6:44

Postby remade » Sat May 20, 2017 12:48 am

TruthInLove wrote:Hi remade,

It's been helpful for me to think of it this way.

Only people who come to God of their own free will are God's. God gives Christ all of those who are God's to give. People come first to God by listening and obeying.
If someone has truly done this, then God draws them to Christ.

That's why I think Christ followed this up by quoting Isaiah 54:13 and saying "Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me." Is that helpful at all?

Carmine


Carmine -

Thanks for these thoughts. It is very helpful and it has definitely given me thoughts to consider.

I keep on reading and see in

John 6:60-65 ESV

60 When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” 61 But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, “Do you take offense at this? 62 Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64 But there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) 65 And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”


The words "drawn" in John 6:44 and "granted" in v65 are probably paramount in this discussion.

Interestingly enough, the same "draw" which is literally a dragging, a persuading, a pulling, takes on an interesting dynamic when compared elsewhere in the book of John, John 12:32 in which Jesus declares, "And I, when I am lifted from the earth, I will draw all people to myself." I am not certain, but I might guess that Calvinists would respond saying, that "all people," is the ethnic "all people," - "all nations, all tribes, all people groups," and not the literal "all people."

Meanwhile, "granted," in John 6:65 is "bestow," or "freely given," or "supply" or "furnish." In context, I can see that Jesus is comparing Himself as the manna, and thus Jesus could be saying that God is giving Jesus to everyone (as the text seems to imply) and thus has "granted" everyone to come to Him if they would receive Him.

Your words have helped out a lot, as it is definitely a different way to look at this.
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
- II CORINTHIANS 5:21 ESV
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Re: John 6:44

Postby TruthInLove » Sat May 20, 2017 7:47 am

remade wrote:Thanks for these thoughts. It is very helpful and it has definitely given me thoughts to consider.

I'm glad to hear that. :D

remade wrote:The words "drawn" in John 6:44 and "granted" in v65 are probably paramount in this discussion.

I used to think this as well but now I'm not so sure. In general I think we have freewill. However, I think after a person has demonstrated to God that they are willing to choose Him and work toward His will, then He does actualize certain aspects of their behaviors and beliefs. Force, you might say. He apparently does the same thing with those reject Him. Certain instances of the hardening of Pharoah's heart for instance.

Therefore, I have no problem seeing these words in the extreme sense of dragging or forcing. Where I would draw the line is saying that this forcing is against a person's will. A person who wills to do God's will but finds themselves incapable of doing it to His satisfaction would hope for God to somehow step in and just force them to do it. I think we have God's promise that He can and does do this for those who want Him to.

In this same way, those who are truly on God's side would not want to miss out on His means of salvation. Therefore, those who choose God as demonstrated by their actions, God will make them incapable of not acknowledging Christ in sufficient manner to result in their salvation.

Hopefully, that hasn't confused you about my position. Perhaps I should have left well enough alone. :?

At any rate, I know your question was in regard to John 6:44 specifically, but here's some other verses from John that I think clarify the point to Jesus' statements.

John 8:31-32: To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
John 8:38-39: you are doing what you have heard from your father.” “Abraham is our father,” they answered. “If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would do what Abraham did.
John 8:42-44: Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, [then] you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
John 8:47: "Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”

God's promise is that a knowledge and relationship with Christ that results in savlation are guaranteed for those who have made it sufficiently clear that they have chosen to strive to do God's will.
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Re: John 6:44

Postby willowtree » Sun May 21, 2017 2:11 pm

TruthInLove wrote:
remade wrote:Thanks for these thoughts. It is very helpful and it has definitely given me thoughts to consider.

I'm glad to hear that. :D

remade wrote:The words "drawn" in John 6:44 and "granted" in v65 are probably paramount in this discussion.

I used to think this as well but now I'm not so sure. In general I think we have freewill. However, I think after a person has demonstrated to God that they are willing to choose Him and work toward His will, then He does actualize certain aspects of their behaviors and beliefs. Force, you might say. He apparently does the same thing with those reject Him. Certain instances of the hardening of Pharoah's heart for instance.

Therefore, I have no problem seeing these words in the extreme sense of dragging or forcing. Where I would draw the line is saying that this forcing is against a person's will. A person who wills to do God's will but finds themselves incapable of doing it to His satisfaction would hope for God to somehow step in and just force them to do it. I think we have God's promise that He can and does do this for those who want Him to.

In this same way, those who are truly on God's side would not want to miss out on His means of salvation. Therefore, those who choose God as demonstrated by their actions, God will make them incapable of not acknowledging Christ in sufficient manner to result in their salvation.


To me there is a lot of comfort to be taken from the way Jesus tells the story of the prodigal son. The father does not come to the pigsty to drag his son home, nor, when he sees him coming way down the road, does he just lean on farm gate and wait for his son to arrive. Jesus says that when the father saw his son 'a long way off', he ran to meet him. The reconciliation took place after the son had expressed his resolve to go home, but still a long way from arriving.

Graeme
God, who is Rich in mercy, made us Alive with Christ, Even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by GRACE you have been saved. Eph 2:4.
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