People were divided (10:19) when the Lord preached from Solomon’s porch (v.23), but united when the apostles preached there (Acts 5:12)—not because they were better preachers, but because Acts 5 is Pentecost, a taste of the kingdom of heaven on eart, where the Jews will be united.
God wants us to be of one accord now (Phil. 2:2) despite our differences. How, when we are so different? Well, the nations put their differences aside to oppose Israel (Joshua 9:1,2), and the Pharisees, Saducees and Herodians likewise united to oppose God’s messenger (Acts 7:57), so why can’t we put our differences aside to promote Paul, God’s messenger for the Gentiles (Romans 11:15; 15:16).
Notice the Jews blame the Lord for their doubt (John 10:24) just as Adam blamed God for giving him Eve (Gen. 3:12). And they weren’t asking Him to plainly say He was Christ so they could worship Him, but to trap Him. We know this because while the Lord plainly told the blind man (John 9:35,36), He just reminded these Jews that He’d already told them (10:25 cf. 5:18; 8:58). Since they refused to believe His words, He pointed them to His works (10:25)
Yet they believed not (John 10:26), even though others did when they saw His miracles (2:23; 11:45), because they were not of His sheep (10:26). The Jews were sheep (Mt.10:6) but only believing Jews (Rom. 2:29; 9:6). Unbe-lieving Jews didn’t hear His voice, but believing Jews did (John 10:27) and followed Him (v.27) by selling all they had in order to be saved (Luke 18:18-22 cf. Mt.19;27-29).
If they had to follow Him to be saved, how could the Lord say eternal life was a gift, i.e., something He’d “give” be-lievers (John 10:28)? Well, if I say I’ll give you $100, but I want you to show that you believe I’ll give it to you by blinking, did you earn the $100 by blinking? Neither did they earn eternal life by selling all, they just showed they believed the Lord when He said He’d give them eternal life
The same word “eternal” that describes our life is used to
describe God (Deut.33:27), so if our life can end, so can He. It can’t end because it is His life. Unbelievers are alienated from the life of God (Eph.4:18) which means believers partake of it. Your life can’t end because it is Christ’s life (Col.3:4). Because of this you’ll “never perish,” which doesn’t mean annihilation. Here it is set in contrast to eternal life, but elsewhere eternal life is contrasted to “everlasting punishment” (Mt.25:46), equating perishing with everlasting punishment.
The Pharisees could pluck and cast the blind man out of the synagogue (John 9:22,34), but they couldn’t cast him out of Christ’s hand (10:28). Eternal security opponents say we can pluck ourselves out, but that would mean our eternal life is in our hands, as the witch’s physical life was in her hands (ISa.28:21). But Christ said our life is in His hands.
No man can pluck us out of the Father’s hand because He is “greater” than all men (John 10:29) and the devil and his host (Ex.18:11 cf. Romans 8:38,39). It was nothing new for believing Jews to be in the Father’s hand (Deut.33:3). How safe is that? Psalm 31:5 sounds safe, and the Lord quoted this when He died, and you know He was safe!
If not being able to pluck believers out of the Lord’s hand or the Father’s hand makes it sound like they are one, they are (John 10:30). People today doubt that He was claiming to be God, but the Jews on the scene didn’t (10: 31). They were ready to stone Him for what He said, and they weren’t allowed to stone people just because they didn’t like them; they believed He was guilty of blasphemy. Every time they thought He blasphemed they tried to kill Him (5:18; 8:58,59 cf. Mt.26:64-66). So when men today refuse to believe He was God, the stones they would have used to stone Him cry out to proclaim Him God (cf. Luke 19:40).
“Was it because I healed the sick that you want to stone Me, or when I cast out devils, etc.” the Lord asked (10:32). He learned this kind of reasoning from His Father, who asked Israel if she was rewarding the good He did for them with evil (Deut.32:5,6; Jer.2:5; Micah 6:3). How about you? Do you reward the One who redeemed you with sin?