12:12 The next day [the day after the feast in Bethany] the great crowd that had come for the Feast [Passover] heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem [Triumphal Entry].
12:13 They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna [the equivalent of saying “Praise God!”]!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the King of Israel [cf. Ps. 118:25-26; Zeph. 3:15; Jn. 1:49; the crowd thought that Jesus was the national leader who had come to liberate them from Roman rule and restore their nation to its former glory]!”
12:14 Jesus found a young donkey [rather than a mighty horse or a chariot; a reminder that He was a humble servant] and sat upon it, as it is written [cf. Zech. 9:9],
12:15 “Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.”
12:23 Jesus replied, “The hour has come [refers to Jesus’ approaching death; Jesus said His hour had not yet come in Jn. 7:6,8,30; 8:20; Jesus said His hour had come in Jn. 31:1; 16:32; 17:1; Jesus was on a divine schedule] for the Son of Man [Jesus’ most frequently used title to describe Himself] to be glorified.
12:24 I tell you the truth, [agricultural metaphor to explain reason for Jesus’ coming death…] unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies [death releases the potential of the kernel of wheat], it remains only a single seed. But if it dies [cf. 1 Cor. 15:36], it produces many seeds.
12:25 The man who loves [a choice] his life will lose it, while the man who hates [to hold one’s life in comparative disregard to the surpassing value of knowing Jesus and possessing eternal life] his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.
Note: Someone said that until you have something worth dying for you do not really have anything worth living for.
12:26 Whoever [a disciple learns from and follows his teacher] serves me must follow [continually] me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.
Note: To follow Jesus is the duty of the disciple. To be with Jesus is the reward of the disciple. How has following Jesus made a difference in your life?
12:27 “Now my heart is troubled [reveals Jesus’ inner struggle as He faced His approaching death], and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No [in spite of the terrors awaiting Him, Jesus remained obedient to the Father], it was for this very reason I came to this hour.
Note: Read about Jesus’ struggle in the Garden of Gethsemane in Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; and Luke 22:39-46.
12:28 Father, glorify [to bring the honor due one’s character] your name!” Then a voice [audible] came from heaven [cf. Lk. 3:21-22; 9:28-36 re: other occasions when God spoke], “I have glorified it [in the life and ministry of Jesus], and will glorify it again [in the death and resurrection of Jesus].”
12:29 The crowd that was there and heard it [the voice from heaven] said it had thundered [cf. Acts 22:9]; others said an angel had spoken to him.
12:30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit [a helpful sign], not mine.
12:31 Now is the time for judgment on this world [fallen humanity]; now the prince [or “ruler”] of this world [cf. 1 Jn. 5:19] will be driven out.
12:32 But I, when I am lifted up [on a cross; cf. Jn. 3:14; 8:28] from the earth, will draw all [does not mean that everyone will ultimately be saved (cf. Jn. 5:28-29); Jesus’ offer of salvation is extended to all people, not just to the Jews] men [believers from all over the world] to myself.”
12:33 He said this [“lifted up” (12:32)] to show the kind of death he was going to die.
12:34 The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Christ will remain forever [cf. Ps. 89:4; Isa. 9:7; Dan. 7:14; the crowd thought the Scripture taught that the Christ would establish a physical, earthly kingdom and rule it permanently], so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man [the only time in the Gospels that this term is used by anyone other than Jesus] must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”
12:35 Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark [cf. 1 Jn. 2:11] does not know where he is going.
12:36 Put your trust in [believe in] the light while you have it [cf. 2 Cor. 6:1-2], so that you may become sons of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them [this marked the end of Jesus’ public ministry].