John 5:19-23

John 5:19 — Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do: for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

20 For the Father loveth the Son, and showeth Him all things that Himself doeth: and He will show Him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.

21 — For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom He will.

22 — For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:

23 — That all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He that honoreth not the Son honoreth not the Father which hath sent Him.

The Son can do nothing of Himself. This isn't a limitation but a statement of the perfect unity between the Father and the Son. He is not a separate God. His will is identical with the Father's. The Son does what the Father does and He does it as the Father does (in accordance with the absolute perfection of their common Divine nature) and He does all the Father does.

The Father shows the Son. There are no secrets, no restraint and a complete equality of intelligence.

The Son isn't doing similar things as the Father, but the same things. None of the three Persons of the Godhead can act apart from the others.

Only God has power over life and death. The Son has these powers because of His sovereignty, not by commission. He gives life "to whom He will."

The theme of verse 19 is expanded in verse 30. Jesus' first recorded statement in Luke 2:49 (… How is it that ye sought Me? wist ye not that I must be about My Father's business?) echoes verse 19.

seeth (v. 19) — to perceive, to know. What He knows, the Father does.

greater works (v. 20) — the cross and Christ's resurrection, the giving of life to the dead, His judgment …

The Son gives life (v. 21) — He is equal to the Father in sovereign ability and rights.

judgment (v. 22) — all future judgment, including the Judgment Seat (1 Corinthians 5:10), the judgment of the nations, Judgment of earth (Acts 17:31) and the Great White Throne Judgment.

honor the Son (v. 23) — Matthew 10:40; John 12:44-45

Verse 23 targets the very elders whom Jesus was talking to. They claimed to honor God but were persecuting the Son. The Father and the Son are equal in Divine honors.

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