John 5:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 5:10, NIV: and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, 'It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.'

John 5:10, ESV: So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.”

John 5:10, KJV: The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.

John 5:10, NASB: So the Jews were saying to the man who was cured, 'It is a Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your pallet.'

John 5:10, NLT: so the Jewish leaders objected. They said to the man who was cured, 'You can't work on the Sabbath! The law doesn't allow you to carry that sleeping mat!'

John 5:10, CSB: and so the Jews said to the man who had been healed, "This is the Sabbath. The law prohibits you from picking up your mat."

What does John 5:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

John often refers to "the Jews" in this book. This uses the Greek term Ioudaioi, and it refers to the religious leadership of Jerusalem. This mindset was dominated by the Pharisees, who took a legalistic, strict approach to the law of Moses. This involved adding layer upon layer of tradition, on top of the laws themselves. In the case of the Sabbath (Exodus 20:10), these laws included restrictions as specific as how many steps a man could walk on the Sabbath, where he could spit, and how much weight he could pick up.

Jesus, however, has just healed a man, and ordered him to carry his bed and walk. This, according to the Pharisees, violated the commandment to honor the Sabbath by not working. At first, it would make sense for them to question the man. What makes less sense is their reaction to his answer (John 5:11). Rather than being amazed at the miracle, these men are upset at Jesus for healing on the Sabbath!

Throughout the Gospels, Jesus deliberately provokes the hard hearts of His critics. In the case of the Pharisees, this is often done by performing healing—or other works—on the Sabbath (Luke 4:31–37; 13:10–17; 14:1–6). Jesus seems to do this in order to show the hypocrisy and shallowness of their approach to God (Matthew 15:3–9).