Category Archives: John 6

Very Good Article on John 6, 10

Here is a great article on the order of faith and election in the Gospel of John. Thanks to Brian Abasciano for making me aware of this work.

Robert Hamilton, “The Order of Faith and Election in John’s Gospel: You Do Not Believe Because You Are Not My Sheep”

Summary Review:
Calvinists use portions of the Gospel of John to establish the concept of unconditional particular election. For example this passage:

Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me, but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. John 10:25-26 (NIV)

Calvinists point to this passage to prove particular election before faith – that the non-believing Jews didn’t follow Jesus because God didn’t elect them to believe.

Hamilton argues that this is a misinterpretation of the passage, and doesn’t take into account the historical context. He argues that the sheep were God fearing Jews who seeking after the Father prior to the arrival of Jesus. When Jesus came, all these God fearing Jews (and later Gentiles) were given by the Father to the son, and these are the sheep Jesus speaks of.

On the other hand, the non-believing Jews were not following God prior to the coming of Jesus, and therefore were not given to him by the Father.

So the passage is not about particular election before faith. It is simply Jesus explaining to the Pharisees that they were not following him because they were not following the Father in the first place.


Filed under John 10, John 6