Did Jesus Lie?

As I was reading John chapter 7 there disciple asked Jesus to go to Judea but Jesus said that " My time has not yet arrived" and then in verse 10 we can read that Jesus went to Judea
So why is that so I mean why did Jesus did that or should I say why did Jesus kind of Lied ?
I hope my Question is Clear to all​:slightly_smiling_face::innocent:


This is indeed an interesting passage. Here we see Jesus making a distinction between himself and the disciples. He tells them, “You can go whenever you like. It doesn’t matter. The world doesn’t hate you, but it does hate me. I cannot go whenever I like. If I go down now, with the caravan, in public, they will seek to kill me. It is not yet time for that, so I am not going to go down with you all. You guys go ahead without me.” He then does go down, albeit in secret, as not to be captured and put on trial before it was time.

I hope this is helpful!


Joshua you were right in your statement. Also please refer to John ch11vs56-57. One main point, Christ cannot lie! He would be breaking His own 10 commandments. It is not in His nature.


@Arpith I agree with @Joshua_Hansen. No, Jesus did not lie, but Jesus did choose to wait to go to Jerusalem by himself because it was not yet His time to die.

Jesus does not make the journey to Jerusalem with the pilgrim caravan. Rather than traveling in public, Jesus goes later by himself. This He judges necessary in order not to hasten the time of His execution in light of mounting opposition. Zondervan Bible Background Commentary

Textual Interpretation Issue

Apparently a majority of ancient texts have Jesus saying that He is “not yet” going up to the festival, but modern translators prefer the more difficult reading “not”. This more difficult reading is preferred because it is more likely that any changes to the text would be to make it read easier; not more difficult.

HCSB: Go up to the festival yourselves. I’m not going up to the festival yet, because My time has not yet fully come.”

ESV: You go up to the feast. I am not going up to this feast, for my time has not yet fully come.”

Most mss (P B L T W Θ Ψ 070 0105 0250 ƒ M sa), including most of the better witnesses, have “not yet” (οὔπω, oupō) here. Those with the reading οὐκ are not as impressive (א D K 1241 al lat), but οὐκ is the more difficult reading here, especially because it stands in tension with v. [10]. On the one hand, it is possible that οὐκ arose because of homoioarcton: A copyist who saw oupw wrote ouk. However, it is more likely that οὔπω was introduced early on to harmonize with what is said two verses later. As for Jesus’ refusal to go up to the feast in v. [8], the statement does not preclude action of a different kind at a later point. Jesus may simply have been refusing to accompany his brothers with the rest of the group of pilgrims, preferring to travel separately and “in secret” (v. [10]) with his disciples. NET Bible

One of the basic rules in textual criticism is to choose the “more difficult” reading. Another way to say this is to ask what reading would most likely give rise to the other reading, and to prefer the former.

This is certainly what gave rise to the alternate reading, “I am not yet (οὔπω replacing οὐκ) going up.” The external evidence for οὔπω is actually quite strong (P66, 75, Vaticanus, but not Sinaiticus), but internally it is inconceivable that a scribe would have changed οὔπω to οὐκ and introduce the issue of Jesus’ honesty. οὐκ is preferred in all major translations (except the KJV following the MT).



Just as an additional thought to Jesus saying ‘my time is not yet’ (it was not yet the right time for Jesus to die on the cross); the preceding verses show that Jesus half brothers did not believe his claims. I’ve heard a suggestion from a speaker that actually Jesus brothers knew that if he openly entered Jerusalem he would be arrested and said ‘you want to be famous, why don’t you announce yourself’…

Ie; his disbelieving brothers were trying to set him up to get into trouble…

Jesus’ Brothers Disbelieve

7 After these things Jesus walked in Galilee; for He did not want to walk in Judea, because the [a]Jews sought to kill Him. 2 Now the Jews’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. 3 His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. 4 For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” 5 For even His brothers did not believe in Him.

6 Then Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.7 The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil. 8 You go up to this feast. I am not [b]yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.” 9 When He had said these things to them, He remained in Galilee.

@SeanO and @Joshua_Hansen what are your thoughts with this interpretation… I’ve heard it suggested by a preacher, so be interested to hear your perspective. This is after John 6, where many of the disciples didn’t follow him any more after his teaching (I guess these disciples in the end of chapter 6 were just ‘hangers on’; people who were interested in say the free food or the healing from the miracles, but not really interested in submitting to the Lord of Creation in all areas of their lives…?)


Hi @Arpith, just wanted to add an additional thought because the example you refer to here is echoing words that Jesus spoke before his ministry even started, when he was at the wedding in Cana. They had run out of wine and his mother asked him to do something about it i.e. create new wine for the guests. His response in John 2:4 was:

4 “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”

We are faced with the the same problem that you highlighted, in that he says it’s not time for him, but in the next moment, he performs the miracle and changes the water into wine anyway.

I think all the responses address this very well. I just wanted to add that I think Jesus always gave answers that have layers of meaning which often his disciples and we can miss until we spend time studying these scriptures. Everything Jesus did was to point towards the time he gave his ultimate sacrifice, the shedding of his own blood. Every time he says his time or hour has not come yet, he is actually referencing his sacrifice. The following link addresses this, and explores some of the prophetic aspects of Jesus’ sacrifice and his ultimate wedding with his bride, the church.

Why Jesus said his hour has not yet come


@matthew.western I would say that this interpretation is going beyond what the Scriptures say and ascribing motives to His brothers actions that are uncertain. While it is likely that their unbelief resulted in some form of mockery / gossip within the family at a minimum, I would be hesitant to say that they wanted to kill Him.

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Agreed. If I am not mistaken there is record of their mockery in that his family questioned his sanity.


Thankyou both Sean and Joshua.

Good question, and many good answers below - but did he lie? No, Jesus can’t lie, if he lied about a “small” thing like this, what more did he lied about?. He was totally free from sin in every way 100% God 100% sinless.:pray:t2::fire:


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