John 11:51
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
Now he did not say this on his own initiative, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation,

King James Bible
And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;

Darby Bible Translation
But this he did not say of himself; but, being high priest that year, prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation;

World English Bible
Now he didn't say this of himself, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation,

Young's Literal Translation
And this he said not of himself, but being chief priest of that year, he did prophesy that Jesus was about to die for the nation,

John 11:51 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Not of himself - Though he uttered what proved to be a true prophecy, yet it was accomplished in a way which he did not intend He had a wicked design. He was plotting murder and crime. Yet, wicked as he was, and little as he intended it, God so ordered it that he delivered a most precious truth respecting the atonement. Remark:

1. God may fulfill the words of the wicked in a manner which they do not wish or intend.

2. He may make even their malice and wicked plots the very means of accomplishing his purposes. What they regard as the fulfillment of their plans God may make the fulfillment of his, yet so as directly to overthrow their designs, and prostrate them in ruin.

3. Sinners should tremble and be afraid when they lay plans against God, or seek to do unjustly to others.

Being high priest that year - It is not to be supposed that Caiaphas was a true prophet, or was conscious of the meaning which John has affixed to his words; but his words express the truth about the atonement of Jesus, and John records it as a remarkable circumstance that the high priest of the nation should unwittingly deliver a sentiment which turned out to be the truth about the death of Jesus. Great importance was attached to the opinion of the high priest by the Jews, because it was by him that the judgment by Urim and Thummim was formerly declared in cases of importance and difficulty, Numbers 27:21. It is not certain or probable that the high priest ever was endowed with the gift of prophecy; but he sustained a high office, the authority of his name was great, and it was thence remarkable that he uttered a declaration which the result showed to be true, though not in the sense that he intended.

He prophesied - He uttered words which proved to be prophetic; or he expressed at that time a sentiment which turned out to be true. It does not mean that he was inspired, or that he deserved to be ranked among the true prophets; but his words were such that they accurately expressed a future event. The word "prophecy" is to be taken here not in the strict sense, but in a sense which is not uncommon in the sacred writers. Acts 21:9; "and the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy." See the Romans 12:6 note; 1 Corinthians 14:1 note; compare Matthew 26:68; Luke 22:64.

That Jesus should die - Die in the place of men, or as an atonement for sinners. This is evidently the meaning which John attaches to the words.

For that nation - For the Jews. As a sacrifice for their sins. In no other sense whatever could it be said that he died for them. His death, so far from saving them in the sense in which the high priest understood it, was the very occasion of their destruction. They invoked the vengeance of God when they said, "His blood be on us and on our children" Matthew 27:25, and all these calamities came upon them because they would not come to him and be saved - that is, because they rejected him and put him to death, Matthew 23:37-39.

John 11:51 Parallel Commentaries

Library
March 11 Evening
Jesus wept.--JOHN 11:35. A man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.--We have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities.--It became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.--Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks
Anonymous—Daily Light on the Daily Path

Christ's Question to Each
For the Young '... Believest then this? She saith unto Him, Yea, Lord.'--JOHN xi. 26, 27. As each of these annual sermons which I have preached for so long comes round, I feel more solemnly the growing probability that it may be the last. Like a man nearing the end of his day's work, I want to make the most of the remaining moments. Whether this is the last sermon of the sort that I shall preach or not, it is certainly the last of the kind that some of you will hear from me, or possibly from any
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Oh, How He Loves!
"Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him!"--John 11:36. IT WAS AT THE GRAVE OF LAZARUS that Jesus wept, and his grief was so manifest to the onlookers that they said, "Behold how he loved him!" Most of us here, I trust, are not mere onlookers, but we have a share in the special love of Jesus. We see evidences of that love, not in his tears, but in the precious blood that he so freely shed for us; so we ought to marvel even more than those Jews did at the love of Jesus, and to see further into
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 56: 1910

The Welcome visitor
IT seems that Martha had heard of Christ's coming, and Mary had not. Hence Martha rose up hastily and went to meet the Master, while Mary sat still in the house. From this we gather that genuine believers may, through some unexplained cause, be at the same time in very different states of mind. Martha may have heard of the Lord and seen the Lord; and Mary, an equally loving heart, not having known of his presence, may, therefore, have missed the privilege of fellowship with him. Who shall say that
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 61: 1915

Cross References
John 11:49
But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all,

John 18:13
and led Him to Annas first; for he was father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year.

1 John 2:2
and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.

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