The connection in John 6:64-65

The connection in John 6:64-65

John 6:64-65 connection on The Giving blog by Cheryl Schatz

John 6:64, 65 Connection

In my post on John 6:64-65, I showed how the reason Jesus gives for why no one can come to Him unless it has been granted him from the Father, is connected back to verse 64 and unbelief.

John 6:64 (NASB) “But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him.

One of the comments on that post suggested that the connection was not between verse 65 and verse 64, but was between verse 65 and verse 63. Here is the comment that I am responding to in this post:

Sorry, I disagree. Jesus’ statement in verse 65 is referring to verse 63. “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.” Verse 64 is simply a narrative of the unbelief of those hearing, because they had not been given life by the Spirit. Then Jesus says in verse 65, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted by the Father.”

John 6:64-65 connection

Here is a screen shot of the sentence structure showing the emphasis.

John 6:64-65 on The Giving blog by Cheryl SchatzThe phrase between the x marks is called a counterpoint. The counterpoint points to the more important Sentence Point shown between the check marks.

Here is a screen shot of the definition of the Sentence Point and how it is connected to the Counter Point.

Point in Greek emphasis on The Giving blog by Cheryl SchatzHere is a similar Point/Counter Point marked in John 6:44.

Point-counterpoint on The Giving blog by Cheryl Schatz

Now notice below that in verse 63 there is no Sentence Point showing anything pointing to the phrase “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all.”

John 6:63 No Point on The Giving blog by Cheryl Schatz

There are only two Sentence Points between verses 63-65. They are found in verses 64 and 65. These important points are the focus, and they must not be missed. Let’s break this down in the emphatic Greek grammar.

John 6:64 (Point) there are some of you who do not believe – follows the lesser (Counter-point from verse 63) The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.

John 6:65 (Point) it is granted him by the Father follows the lesser (Counter-point from verse 65) no one can come to me

Now notice the final connection in John 6:68.

John 6:68 on The Giving blog by Cheryl Schatz

In John 6:68 Peter confesses that the disciples can go to no one else because it is Jesus alone who has the words of eternal life. Peter also confesses in verse 69 that “we have believed.”

“Having believed” is attached to accepting Jesus’ words of eternal life now.  Those having not believed Moses will not accept Jesus’ words now. It is such a key point that Jesus had already said:

John 5:46 (NASB) “For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me.

Notice that Jesus did NOT say that if you were made unconditionally alive, you would believe Me. He said that belief in Moses leads to a certain belief in Him and unbelief in Moses means a certain unbelief in Him. There is no contradiction in what Jesus said. Unbelievers simply are not given to Him by the Father. They do not belong to the Father because they refuse to believe the Father’s word given thru Moses. Unbelievers will walk away because they are unbelievers.

The commenter from my other blog post said:

That is the logical and clear sequence of thought in those three verses. Your interpretation is twisting what is clear.

Not true. The logical and clear sequence of thought from John 5 through to John 6 is that unbelievers in Moses cannot and will not believe in Jesus. Jesus said in John 6: 64 that some of His followers were unbelievers. Jesus knew that only believers were given to Him from the Father. Jesus also knew that all those who walked away from Him in unbelief had already walked away from the Father in unbelief. Jesus knew.

20 thoughts on “The connection in John 6:64-65

  1. That text was always a source of confusion to me. Thanks for the help. 🙂 I’ve heard it said that if there is any confusion about a specific text, you follow the easier verses along that same line.

    I’m no Bible Scholar, but if there was a clear cut verse for Calvinists to go to, saying that we had to be ‘sovereignly regenerated’ before we could believe, they’d have found it. At best, they create a recipe for such doctrines by sprinking and dashing bits and pieces of verses to arrive at some sort of theological stew. However, as Lorie McGregor liked to say, you can make the Bible say ANYTHING if you know how to cobble phrases together. “Judas went out and hanged himself. Go, thou, and do likewise.”

  2. For the sake of argument, let’s assume you, Cheryl, are correct: the people don’t believe, and for this reason (because they don’t believe) Jesus tells them they can’t come (since the Father doesn’t give unbelievers). A question for the non-Calvinist: What does it mean that “the flesh profits nothing?” Since the words Jesus spoke “are spirit and life” and yet after hearing Jesus’s words they still don’t believe, what is the mechanism by which one does begin to believe?

  3. Hi Robin:

    Simple question; Who is this god of Calvinism that he does NOT CHOOSE to love His entire creation? Romans 2:11, Eph 6:9, Acts 10:34, 1 Tim 2:4-6, 1 Tim 5:21, and, most importantly, John 3:16, 17, 1 John 4:14 says that God so loved the WORLD. That He did not come into the WORLD to condemn the WORLD but that the WORLD through HIM, might be saved.

    I am a CHRISTIAN. NEITHER Arminian and definitely NOT Calvinist. In CHRIST ALONE my hope is found.

    WHY do Calvinists have such a hard time with the idea with the idea that Christ loves His creation? Honestly, I want to understand, but I can’t. Because if Christ doesn’t love His entire creation, how do you know that he loves you? Just askin’ ?

  4. Robin,
    I have a very busy weekend so I don’t know how much time I can give to answer, so please excuse me for being tardy.

    I will start with this and go on as I have time.

    You asked:

    what is the mechanism by which one does begin to believe

    The very first mechanism by which one does begin to believe is that God MUST reveal Himself so that one can hear Him.

    I have discussed the “hearing” part here https://www.mmoutreach.org/tg/spiritually-dead-do/

  5. Robin,
    The answer to the rest of your question about what verse 63 means, will be best answered in a new post rather than in the comment section since I am going verse by verse. I will try hard to get that done sometime in the next week if I can possibly put in the time for a post. Is that acceptable? I hope you will watch for it. Better yet why don’t you subscribe to new posts in the check box below?

  6. Why do you assume I am Calvinist? I have read a lot of Calvinist literature; therefore, it is reasonable for me to frame a question from that point of view. I have legitimate questions that I am working through. So far, I have yet to come across a reasonable answer to my question as to what brings about belief. It’s obvious that one must “hear.” But when there are verses about God’s Word being powerful and effective, and not returning void, and accomplishing the thing for which it is sent, it makes me wonder if indeed there must be an “effectual” impetus in coming to believe. Satan successfully blinds men spiritually. Shouldn’t we assume that in order to combat Satan’s power that God has at least equal (if not more) power to illuminate the mind? And, if God has equal (if not more) power to illuminate a mind, shouldn’t we see more people coming to know the Lord than not? In other words, since the pull to love sin is so strong, doesn’t the drawing of God have to be great enough to overcome that pull to sin? To illustrate, God’s wooing me would be like presenting Christ to my mind so that Christ is attractive to me… like chocolate cake. Given spinach (sin) and chocolate cake (Christ), I would want to choose cake because it appeals more to me. So, my question stands… What causes someone to actually believe? If preaching causes some to stumble (Jews) and to others preaching is foolishness (Gentiles), how does one overcome the stumbling, or the seeing of the cross as foolishness?

  7. Hi Robin:

    First off, apologies for making that assumption. As soon as I read “NON CALVINIST” I jumped to that conclusion. And when it comes to the issue of Calvinism, I’m not the most patient person around. So I DO apologize.

    To answer your question(as best I can) the Bible says Faith comes by HEARING and Hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17) But some, either by lust of the flesh, lust of the eye and the pride of life turn their back on the preaching of the Cross. Some might have been so deceived in the past that any mention of the Bible turns them off. Others, by religious background and tradition see the cross as a stumbling block.

    As far as overcoming that stumbling block…. God knows the heart. The Bible says that you will seek me and find Me when you search for me with all your heart. (Jer 29:13) But that searching is a personal CHOICE. And if someone GENUINELY WANTS to know, God will put someone in their path to point the person to Christ. John 14:6 is a huge issue here, but too many don’t know, even in the midst of their search, so they end up falling for the deception of the Watchtower Jesus, who can’t save.

    A few people have come to faith (from agnosticism or atheism) by trying to DISPROVE the Bible and Christ. There’s one author, I cannot remember his name, and he came to Christ after researching (out of sheer intellectual curiosity) to prove Him a myth or just a man. He’s a current author…. LEE STROBEL! (I just checked it) . 😀 But INTELLECTUAL SUPERIORITY is another reason some dismiss Christ and the Bible. The HUMAN MIND can’t make sense of this. But even Shakespeare said “There are more things in heaven and on earth, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” And Romans 1 is a great chapter. “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.”

    Those who are continually stumbled by this are either content to rest in their intellectual superiority, or they’re afraid of what would happen if they did accept Christ.

    I’m not a seminary scholar by any stretch of the imagination, but I do know that spent years, going to church with a classmate’s mom just because I liked what I was hearing.
    1 Tim 2:4-6 says that it is His desire that ALL be saved, but the enemy of humanity has a firm grip on too many hearts and minds. (2 Cor 4:4)

    At the end of the day, the devil is the CHIEF source of every reason people don’t come to Christ. He devices road blocks. God will NEVER prevent ANYONE from coming to Him. Hebrews 11:6 .

    I hope that helps a bit. Once more, apologies for my jumping to hasty conclusion.

    Hope we can chat more.

  8. Robin,
    You said:

    I have legitimate questions that I am working through.

    That is reasonable and fair. I am glad that you found this blog and that we can interact in a respectful dialog.

    You also said:

    So far, I have yet to come across a reasonable answer to my question as to what brings about belief. It’s obvious that one must “hear.”

    That is obvious to me too, however is it not normal for a Calvinist to say that the dead can do nothing? That they are stone, cold, dead, and they can’t hear?

  9. Robin,
    You asked:

    Shouldn’t we assume that in order to combat Satan’s power that God has at least equal (if not more) power to illuminate the mind?

    God speaks to people who are spiritually dead. He also says that they can hear Him. He certainly does have power to speak.

    You asked:

    And, if God has equal (if not more) power to illuminate a mind, shouldn’t we see more people coming to know the Lord than not?

    Why? It is God’s power to speak, but He says “those who HEAR will live”. You may be reasoning that God’s speaking is bringing a person to life SO THAT they can hear. But the Scripture clearly says that the dead HEAR first before they live.

    You said:

    To illustrate, God’s wooing me would be like presenting Christ to my mind so that Christ is attractive to me… like chocolate cake. Given spinach (sin) and chocolate cake (Christ), I would want to choose cake because it appeals more to me. So, my question stands… What causes someone to actually believe?

    The answer is in my post at http://www.mmoutreach.org/tg/john-663/ The words of God are His life-giving revelation so that we have even revelation to believe. This has nothing to do with choices of food. It has to do with revelation of what is God-breathed.

    Robin, you pose another great question:

    If preaching causes some to stumble (Jews) and to others preaching is foolishness (Gentiles), how does one overcome the stumbling, or the seeing of the cross as foolishness?

    One stays away from being stumbled by believing the light that one is given. It is only when one hardens one’s heart against the revelation that one has been given that ones becomes stumbled by the light. People are not born hardened. They become hardened by rejecting God’s truth that He has given them.

  10. Thank you for your kind responses, and please excuse my slow reply, as I was out of town and chose to take a vacation from my laptop. When I read John 6:65, it does seem evident that it corresponds back to verse 64, As I read it, it seems that the link, according to Jesus’ words is this: some of you don’t believe, and this is why some of you don’t believe – “it” must be given by My Father. To what does the “it” refer? I’m trying to research this. What is it that must be given by the Father? I heard an interesting illustration recently about a lion. A lion has all the natural faculties necessary to eat grass (the teeth, the mouth, the tongue, etc.) But by nature he is a carnivore. He may be starving to death, but will not eat the grass all around him. Similarly, an unregenerate person has no desire or affection for Christ. It’s not that the person lacks the ability to choose, it’s simply that he won’t choose to come to Christ. Therefore, since Christ is first viewed as repulsive (stumbling block) to the Jews, or as foolish (against common sense) to the Gentiles, there must be “something” (“it?” vs. 65) that brings about a changed mindset or attitude in regards to the cross. Verse 65 seems to say that whatever the “it” refers to must be granted by the Father. I’m wondering if this is what is meant by the “call” of I Cor. 1:24. This passage basically says there are Jews, there are Gentiles, and then this group of “called” – and to this group, Christ is viewed as the power and wisdom of God. How did that happen? This question haunts me.

  11. Robin,

    No problem with slowness. I can be pretty slow myself, especially when I have my nose in a research project. I tend to ignore everything else for a time until I come up for air.

    You said:

    some of you don’t believe, and this is why some of you don’t believe – “it” must be given by My Father. To what does the “it” refer? I’m trying to research this. What is it that must be given by the Father?

    The “it” that is granted to the person is the “coming” to Jesus. The coming to Jesus is a gift.

    I think you will find my article on John 6:37 to be helpful. https://www.mmoutreach.org/tg/come-john6-37/

    Also my article on the Father’s drawing here http://www.mmoutreach.org/tg/none-can/

    I will leave aside 1 Cor. 1:24 for now, both for a lack of time and because I do want to concentrate on John 6 and its context. I will be doing other DVDs on Ephesians, Romans 9, etc. John 6 is the key project for me right now. If it is still an issue for you after you have read the articles, I would be willing to dialog. And any questions connected to John 6, I can consider posting more extensively with a new blog post.

    I hope this helps. Thank you for your willingness to dialog.

Comments are closed.

Comments are closed.
%d bloggers like this: