Jesus, the House of God, the Gate of Heaven

Posted by admin on 31 July 2022 in 2 Corinthians, Genesis, John |

John 1:47–51 (NIVUK)

47 When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, ‘Here truly is an Israelite in whom there is no deceit.’
48 ‘How do you know me?’ Nathanael asked.
Jesus answered, ‘I saw you while you were still under the fig-tree before Philip called you.’
49 Then Nathanael declared, ‘Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel.’
50 Jesus said, ‘You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig-tree. You will see greater things than that.’ 51 He then added, ‘Very truly I tell you, you will see “heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on” the Son of Man.’

Ever since Philip said to Nathanael, ‘Come and see’ (46), a great Bible Study session for Nathanael began in v47 ~ 51. Nathanael possibly was reading Jacob’s story in Genesis such as Genesis 27 ~ 32 when he was under the fig tree (48).

I. Israel is no longer Jacob but a new creation (47)

What Jesus said in v47 taught Nathanael that Israel was no longer deceptive Jacob and became a new person with no deceit, which would indicate that Jacob experienced ‘spiritual rebirth’ (cf. John 3:3-9, 2 Corinthians 5:17) just before he was renamed Israel (Genesis 32:28).

II. Jesus is the House of God and the Gate of Heaven (48-51)

Further, Jesus taught Nathanael in v51 that Jesus was the House of God (Bethel). After Jacob dreamed about the angels of God ascending and descending on the earth, he called the place ‘Bethel’ meaning the House of God (Genesis 28:10-19). In v51, Jesus told Nathanael about the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man. This explains Jacob’s dream. That is, Jesus is the House of God (Bethel) and the Gate of Heaven (Genesis 28:17), on which the angels of God are ascending and descending.

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