What does John 5:14 mean?
ESV: Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.”
NIV: Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, 'See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.'
NASB: Afterward, Jesus *found him in the temple and said to him, 'Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.'
CSB: After this, Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, "See, you are well. Do not sin anymore, so that something worse doesn't happen to you."
NLT: But afterward Jesus found him in the Temple and told him, 'Now you are well; so stop sinning, or something even worse may happen to you.'
KJV: Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
NKJV: Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”
Verse Commentary:
When Jesus first spoke to this man, he had been crippled for nearly forty years (John 5:5). Jesus' first question was to ask if the man wanted to be healed. The man's response was not really a "yes," but a complaint about nobody being willing to help him (John 5:7). For this reason, it's possible that Jesus was asking the man if he even wanted to be healed in the first place. This verse does not indicate that the man showed any gratitude to Jesus. Yet he went to local religious leaders to let them know Jesus was responsible for the earlier incident (John 5:15).

Apparently, Jesus was not interested in creating a spectacle over His connection to the miracle since He immediately left into the crowd (John 5:13). Judging by the reaction of the local religious leaders (John 5:11–12), Jesus seems to have intended a public conversation about His ministry, which will begin shortly.

In the meantime, Jesus found the healed man, and now delivers an often-debated command. At another healing, Jesus will make the point that not all suffering is the result of a person's own sin (John 9:3). Here, however, Jesus' words seem to connect the man's prior condition to sin. It may have been that the man's disability was the result of personal choices. At the same time, Jesus may simply be reminding the man that there are worse things than being crippled, including the eternal penalties of sin (Luke 12:4–5).
Verse Context:
John 5:1–15 contains the third of John's seven ''signs'' of Christ. A man crippled for decades expresses no prior knowledge of Jesus, nor an immediate desire to be healed. Jesus heals the man and tells him to walk. For carrying his mat—working—local religious leaders then confront the man. Yet he still doesn't know who Jesus is. Jesus meets the man in the temple and warns him about the dangers of sin. Once the city's leaders find out that Jesus was responsible for the healing, they will confront Him for violating the Sabbath, and for claiming to be equal with God.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus again returns to Jerusalem, as required for the various feast days. While there, He heals a man who had been crippled for nearly forty years. Since this occurred on the Sabbath, local religious leaders are angry. In fact, they are more upset with Jesus for working on the Sabbath than amazed at His miracle. In response, Jesus offers an important perspective on evidence. Jesus refers to human testimony, scriptural testimony, and miracles as reasons to believe His declarations. Christ also lays claim to many of the attributes of God, making a clear claim to divinity.
Chapter Context:
Chapters 1 through 4 showed Jesus avoiding major publicity. Here, in chapter 5, He will begin to openly challenge the local religious leaders. This chapter is Jesus' first major answer to His critics in this gospel. The fact that Jesus is willing to heal on the Sabbath sets up a theme of His upcoming disagreements with the Pharisees. Jesus also provides an important perspective on the relationship between evidence and faith, which He will expand on in later chapters. This chapter also establishes a key point made by Jesus' critics: His claims to be God.
Book Summary:
The disciple John wrote the gospel of John decades after the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke were written. The author assumes that a reader is already familiar with the content of these other works. So, John presents a different perspective, with a greater emphasis on meaning. John uses seven miracles—which he calls "signs"— to prove that Jesus is, in fact, God incarnate. Some of the most well-known verses in the Bible are found here. None is more famous than the one-sentence summary of the gospel found in John 3:16.
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