What does John 8:54 mean?
ESV: Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’
NIV: Jesus replied, 'If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me.
NASB: Jesus answered, 'If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing; it is My Father who glorifies Me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God’;
CSB: "If I glorify myself," Jesus answered, "my glory is nothing. My Father--about whom you say, 'He is our God'--he is the one who glorifies me.
NLT: Jesus answered, 'If I want glory for myself, it doesn’t count. But it is my Father who will glorify me. You say, ‘He is our God,’
KJV: Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:
NKJV: Jesus answered, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God.
Verse Commentary:
Jesus has already pointed out that the words and works He does are under the commands of God the Father (John 8:26). He is not seeking attention or self-promotion, and has always given credit to God (John 8:50). Since He is supported by evidence from God, such as miracles (John 5:36) and Scripture (John 5:39–40), Jesus' words ought to be accepted. Instead, those who seek to have Jesus killed (John 5:18; John 7:1) are being stubborn. They keep misinterpreting Jesus words because they do not want to know the truth (John 7:17; John 8:43).

Prior to this, Jesus has pointed out that His critics act more like the devil than Abraham (John 8:44). They lie, they use violence, and they reject God by rejecting Christ (John 6:29). Here, Jesus will begin to make this condemnation even more direct, literal, and pointed. This begins with Jesus confronting their claims to follow God. As pointed out before, those who truly follow God are meant to listen to His message (John 6:37). Those who reject God's Word cannot claim to be part of His family (John 8:37–38), and are damned to die for their sins (John 8:21).

As continued in the next verse, Jesus will directly call this claim—that Jerusalem's religious leaders follow God—a lie. These men, who hypocritically protect their own power instead of following the truth, do not know God.
Verse Context:
John 8:31–59 is a passage which dovetails with John 2:13–22, where Jesus drives corrupt businessmen from the temple. These Scriptures disprove any myths that Jesus was weak, timid, passive, or soft. In this exchange with the Pharisees, Jesus pulls no punches. Jerusalem's religious leaders, and their followers, continue to resist Jesus' preaching. They rely on arrogance and insults, to which Jesus responds with blunt, unfiltered condemnation. This culminates in Jesus making an overt statement of His own divinity, punctuating the debate by declaring ''before Abraham was, I am!''
Chapter Summary:
John chapter 8 includes the story of the adulterous woman, a well-known but controversial passage. Most scholars believe this story is authentic, but not originally found in this exact spot in Scripture. This chapter continues Jesus' preaching during the Feast of Booths, where He once again comes into conflict with local religious leaders. Here, Christ will make His second ''I AM'' statement, using the analogy of light, which is a common theme in Hebrew theology. This conversation will become more and more heated. Eventually, Jesus' opponents are enraged enough to attempt killing Him right then and there.
Chapter Context:
Jesus is attending the Feast of Booths in Jerusalem, and has once again come into conflict with the local religious authorities. In the previous chapter, Jesus referred to Himself as a source of living water, playing off of the festivals' ritual pouring of water in the temple. In this chapter, Jesus will use the imagery of lights, also related to festival traditions. This chapter demonstrates Jesus' willingness to be direct, even aggressive, with His critics. The next few chapters will complete Jesus' public ministry, as He prepares for His impending death.
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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