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The Feast of Shelters

After this[a] Jesus traveled throughout Galilee.[b] He[c] stayed out of Judea[d] because the Jewish leaders[e] wanted[f] to kill him. Now the Jewish Feast of Shelters[g] was near.[h]

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  1. John 7:1 sn Again, the transition is indicated by the imprecise temporal indicator After this. Clearly, though, the author has left out much of the events of Jesus’ ministry, because chap. 6 took place near the Passover (6:4). This would have been the Passover between winter/spring of a.d. 32, just one year before Jesus’ crucifixion (assuming a date of a.d. 33 for the crucifixion), or the Passover of winter/spring a.d. 29, assuming a date of a.d. 30 for the crucifixion.
  2. John 7:1 tn Grk “Jesus was traveling around in Galilee.”
  3. John 7:1 tn Grk “For he.” Here γάρ (gar, “for”) has not been translated.
  4. John 7:1 tn Grk “he did not want to travel around in Judea.”
  5. John 7:1 tn Or “the Jewish authorities”; Grk “the Jews.” In NT usage the term ᾿Ιουδαῖοι (Ioudaioi) may refer to the entire Jewish people, the residents of Jerusalem and surrounding territory, the authorities in Jerusalem, or merely those who were hostile to Jesus. (For further information see R. G. Bratcher, “‘The Jews’ in the Gospel of John,” BT 26 [1975]: 401-9.) Here the phrase should be restricted to the Jewish authorities or leaders who were Jesus’ primary opponents.
  6. John 7:1 tn Grk “were seeking.”
  7. John 7:2 tn Or “Feast of Tabernacles” or Or “Feast of Booths” (the feast where people lived in tents or huts, which was celebrated in the autumn after harvest). John’s use of σκηνοπηγία (skēnopēgia) for the Feast of Shelters constitutes the only use of this term in the New Testament.
  8. John 7:2 sn Since the present verse places these incidents at the Feast of Shelters (a.d. 29 or 32, depending on whether one dates the crucifixion in a.d. 30 or 33) there would have been a 6-month interval during which no events are recorded. The author is obviously selective in his approach; he is not recording an exhaustive history (as he will later tell the reader in John 21:25). After healing the paralytic on the Sabbath in Jerusalem (John 5:1-47), Jesus withdrew again to Galilee because of mounting opposition. In Galilee the feeding of the 5,000 took place, which marked the end of the Galilean ministry for all practical purposes. John 7:1-9 thus marks Jesus’ final departure from Galilee.

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