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John 7Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Jesus and His Brothers

After this, Jesus traveled around the country of Galilee. He did not want to travel in Judea, because the Jewish leaders there wanted to kill him. It was time for the Jewish Festival of Shelters. So his brothers said to him, “You should leave here and go to the festival in Judea. Then your followers there can see the miracles you do. If you want to be well known, you must not hide what you do. So, if you can do such amazing things, let the whole world see you do them.” Jesus’ brothers said this because even they did not believe in him.

Jesus said to them, “The right time for me has not yet come, but any time is right for you to go. The world cannot hate you. But the world hates me, because I tell the people in the world that they do evil things. So you go to the festival. I will not go now, because the right time for me has not yet come.” After Jesus said this, he stayed in Galilee.

10 So his brothers left to go to the festival. After they left, Jesus went too, but he did not let people see him. 11 At the festival the Jewish leaders were looking for him. They said, “Where is that man?”

12 There was a large group of people there. Many of them were talking secretly to each other about Jesus. Some people said, “He is a good man.” But others said, “No, he fools the people.” 13 But no one was brave enough to talk about him openly. They were afraid of the Jewish leaders.

Jesus Teaches in Jerusalem

14 When the festival was about half finished, Jesus went to the Temple area and began to teach. 15 The Jewish leaders were amazed and said, “How did this man learn so much? He never had the kind of teaching we had!”

16 Jesus answered, “What I teach is not my own. My teaching comes from the one who sent me. 17 People who really want to do what God wants will know that my teaching comes from God. They will know that this teaching is not my own. 18 If I taught my own ideas, I would just be trying to get honor for myself. But if I am trying to bring honor to the one who sent me, I can be trusted. Anyone doing that is not going to lie. 19 Moses gave you the law, right? But you don’t obey that law. If you do, then why are you trying to kill me?”

20 The people answered, “A demon is making you crazy! We are not trying to kill you.”

21 Jesus said to them, “I did one miracle on a Sabbath day, and you were all surprised. 22 But you obey the law Moses gave you about circumcision—and sometimes you do it on a Sabbath day. (Really, Moses is not the one who gave you circumcision. It came from our ancestors who lived before Moses.) Yes, you often circumcise baby boys on a Sabbath day. 23 This shows that someone can be circumcised on a Sabbath day to obey the Law of Moses. So why are you angry with me for healing a person’s whole body on the Sabbath day? 24 Stop judging by the way things look. Be fair and judge by what is really right.”

People Wonder if Jesus Is the Messiah

25 Then some of the people who lived in Jerusalem said, “This is the man they are trying to kill. 26 But he is teaching where everyone can see and hear him. And no one is trying to stop him from teaching. Maybe the leaders have decided that he really is the Messiah. 27 But when the real Messiah comes, no one will know where he comes from. And we know where this man’s home is.”

28 Jesus was still teaching in the Temple area when he said loudly, “Do you really know me and where I am from? I am here, but not by my own decision. I was sent by one who is very real. But you don’t know him. 29 I know him because I am from him. He is the one who sent me.”

30 When Jesus said this, the people tried to grab him. But no one was able even to touch him, because the right time for him had not yet come. 31 But many of the people believed in Jesus. They said, “We are waiting for the Messiah to come. When he comes, will he do more miraculous signs than this man has done?”

The Jewish Leaders Try to Arrest Jesus

32 The Pharisees heard what the people were saying about Jesus. So the leading priests and the Pharisees sent some Temple police to arrest him. 33 Then Jesus said, “I will be with you a little while longer. Then I will go back to the one who sent me. 34 You will look for me, but you will not find me. And you cannot come where I am.”

35 These Jews said to each other, “Where will this man go that we cannot find him? Will he go to the Greek cities where our people live? Will he teach the Greek people there? 36 He says, ‘You will look for me, but you will not find me.’ He also says, ‘You cannot come where I am.’ What does this mean?”

Jesus Talks About the Holy Spirit

37 The last day of the festival came. It was the most important day. On that day Jesus stood up and said loudly, “Whoever is thirsty may come to me and drink. 38 If anyone believes in me, rivers of living water will flow out from their heart. That is what the Scriptures say.” 39 Jesus was talking about the Spirit. The Spirit had not yet been given to people, because Jesus had not yet been raised to glory. But later, those who believed in Jesus would receive the Spirit.

The People Argue About Jesus

40 When the people heard the things that Jesus said, some of them said, “This man really is the Prophet.[a]

41 Other people said, “He is the Messiah.”

And others said, “The Messiah will not come from Galilee. 42 The Scriptures say that the Messiah will come from the family of David. And they say that he will come from Bethlehem, the town where David lived.” 43 So the people did not agree with each other about Jesus. 44 Some of the people wanted to arrest him. But no one tried to do it.

The Jewish Leaders Refuse to Believe

45 The Temple police went back to the leading priests and the Pharisees. The priests and the Pharisees asked, “Why didn’t you bring Jesus?”

46 The Temple police answered, “We have never heard anyone say such amazing things!”

47 The Pharisees answered, “So he has fooled you too! 48 You don’t see any of the leaders or any of us Pharisees believing in him, do you? 49 But those people out there know nothing about the law. They are under God’s curse!”

50 But Nicodemus was there in that group. He was the one who had gone to see Jesus before.[b] He said, 51 “Our law will not let us judge anyone without first hearing them and finding out what they have done.”

52 The Jewish leaders answered, “You must be from Galilee too! Study the Scriptures. You will find nothing about a prophet[c] coming from Galilee.”

A Woman Caught in Adultery

53 Then they all left and went home.


  1. John 7:40 Prophet They probably meant the prophet that God told Moses he would send. See Deut. 18:15-19.
  2. John 7:50 He was the one … before The story about Nicodemus going and talking to Jesus is in Jn. 3:1-21.
  3. John 7:52 a prophet Two early Greek copies have “the Prophet,” which would mean the “prophet like Moses” mentioned in Deut. 18:15. In Acts 3:22 and 7:37 this is understood to be the Messiah, as in verse 40 above.
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International


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