Six days before the Passover Feast, Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus lived. (Lazarus is the man Jesus raised from the dead.)
There they had a dinner for Jesus. Martha served the food, and Lazarus was one of the people eating with Jesus.
Mary brought in a pint of very expensive perfume made from pure nard. She poured the perfume on Jesus' feet, and then she wiped his feet with her hair. And the sweet smell from the perfume filled the whole house.
Judas Iscariot, one of Jesus' followers who would later turn against him, was there. Judas said,
"This perfume was worth three hundred coins. Why wasn't it sold and the money given to the poor?"
But Judas did not really care about the poor; he said this because he was a thief. He was the one who kept the money box, and he often stole from it.
Jesus answered, "Leave her alone. It was right for her to save this perfume for today, the day for me to be prepared for burial.
You will always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me."
A large crowd of Jews heard that Jesus was in Bethany. So they went there to see not only Jesus but Lazarus, whom Jesus raised from the dead.
So the leading priests made plans to kill Lazarus, too.
Because of Lazarus many of the Jews were leaving them and believing in Jesus.
The next day a great crowd who had come to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast heard that Jesus was coming there.
So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Jesus, shouting, "Praisen God! God bless the King of Israel!"
Jesus found a colt and sat on it. This was as the Scripture says,
"Don't be afraid, people of Jerusalem! Your king is coming, sitting on the colt of a donkey."
The followers of Jesus did not understand this at first. But after Jesus was raised to glory, they remembered that this had been written about him and that they had done these things to him.
There had been many people with Jesus when he raised Lazarus from the dead and told him to come out of the tomb. Now they were telling others about what Jesus did.
Many people went out to meet Jesus, because they had heard about this miracle.
So the Pharisees said to each other, "You can see that nothing is going right for us. Look! The whole world is following him."
There were some Greek people, too, who came to Jerusalem to worship at the Passover Feast.
They went to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and said, "Sir, we would like to see Jesus."
Philip told Andrew, and then Andrew and Philip told Jesus.
Jesus said to them, "The time has come for the Son of Man to receive his glory.
I tell you the truth, a grain of wheat must fall to the ground and die to make many seeds. But if it never dies, it remains only a single seed.
Those who love their lives will lose them, but those who hate their lives in this world will keep true life forever.
Whoever serves me must follow me. Then my servant will be with me everywhere I am. My Father will honor anyone who serves me.
"Now I am very troubled. Should I say, 'Father, save me from this time'? No, I came to this time so I could suffer.
Father, bring glory to your name!" Then a voice came from heaven, "I have brought glory to it, and I will do it again."
The crowd standing there, who heard the voice, said it was thunder. But others said, "An angel has spoken to him."
Jesus said, "That voice was for your sake, not mine.
Now is the time for the world to be judged; now the ruler of this world will be thrown down.
If I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw all people toward me."
Jesus said this to show how he would die.
The crowd said, "We have heard from the law that the Christ will live forever. So why do you say, 'The Son of Man must be lifted up'? Who is this 'Son of Man'?"
Then Jesus said, "The light will be with you for a little longer, so walk while you have the light. Then the darkness will not catch you. If you walk in the darkness, you will not know where you are going.
Believe in the light while you still have it so that you will become children of light." When Jesus had said this, he left and hid himself from them.
Though Jesus had done many miracles in front of the people, they still did not believe in him.
This was to bring about what Isaiah the prophet had said: "Lord, who believed what we told them? Who saw the Lord's power in this?"
This is why the people could not believe: Isaiah also had said,
"He has blinded their eyes, and he has closed their minds. Otherwise they would see with their eyes and understand in their minds and come back to me and be healed."
Isaiah said this because he saw Jesus' glory and spoke about him.
But many believed in Jesus, even many of the leaders. But because of the Pharisees, they did not say they believed in him for fear they would be put out of the synagogue.
They loved praise from people more than praise from God.
Then Jesus cried out, "Whoever believes in me is really believing in the One who sent me.
Whoever sees me sees the One who sent me.
I have come as light into the world so that whoever believes in me would not stay in darkness.
"Anyone who hears my words and does not obey them, I do not judge, because I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world.
There is a judge for those who refuse to believe in me and do not accept my words. The word I have taught will be their judge on the last day.
The things I taught were not from myself. The Father who sent me told me what to say and what to teach.
And I know that eternal life comes from what the Father commands. So whatever I say is what the Father told me to say."