Biblical Concept: Angelic Conflict in the Gospel of John


Introduction: After twelve and 0ne half chapters of religious negative volition and spiritual positive volition to the Person and Work of Jesus Christ, in 12:27-32 and 13:27-32 the Personal purposes of the Triune God of the Bible are stated.  These passages note the Angelic Conflict and God’s purpose of glorifying Himself in it through defeating fallen angels and delivering those with spiritual positive volition.


John 12:27-32, God’s Purposes in the Angelic Conflict.


Background: Passover approached (12:1, 20) and Greek worshippers (12:20) desired to see Jesus (12:21).  In response to their positive volition Jesus provides remarkable statements about the purposes of God in the Angelic Conflict.


12:27a, “Now My soul has become troubled;” – “has become troubled” is tara,ssw in the original.  This word is found in 17 verses in the New Testament and is typically found in intense contexts.  For example, see John 11:33 (troubled) and 13:21 (troubled).  An indicative perfect passive inflection is employed and describes a state of continual soul agitation from outside sources.  The process of the Son of Man being glorified in the Angelic Conflict was intense and difficult.  Note 12:23. 


12:27b, “and what shall I say, 'Father, save Me from this hour?’” – The answer to this question is a resounding “no” according to 12:27c.  “Hour” signifies the proximity of intensified hostilities for Jesus in the Angelic Conflict.  See 12:31.  Note “hour” in 2:4, 7:30, 8:20, 12:23, 13:1, and 17:1.


 12:27c, “But for this purpose I came to this hour.” – The context describes “this purpose” as glorifying God (see 12:23 and 12:28a), defeating fallen angels (12:31), and saving mankind (12:32). 


12:28a, “’Father, glorify Thy name.’ There came therefore a voice out of heaven:” – The triple mention of glory and the speaking of God the Father in this verse are emphatic.  God is about the business of glorifying Himself in the Angelic Conflict.  “Name” = o;noma = a title, person, authority, power, status, a category (a prophet for example).  For the status and authority of Jesus name see Philippians 2:9-11 and Ephesians 1:18-23.  “Voice out of heaven”: This is one of only three instances of God the Father speaking.  The others occurred at Jesus’ baptism (Mark 1:11) and Jesus’ transfiguration (Matthew 17:5).  Thus, the Father spoke at Jesus’ baptism, transfiguration, and in preparation for the Glory of the Cross.  “Glory” is an important theme in the Gospel of John (42x), and particularly in chapters 13-17 (13x) —The upper-room discourse: Jesus’ theological dealings with the Twelve Disciples, the first presentation of Church Age Doctrine. 


12:28b, "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." – Again, God is about the business of glorifying Himself in the Angelic Conflict.  Hence, the emphasis in this sentence concerning past and future glorification of God’s name.  For an example of future glorification of God’s name see Revelation 15:4, in the context of verses 1-8.   Note also Jesus’ mention of past glory in John 17:5.


Skip to: 12:31-32.


12:31a, “Now judgment is upon this world;” – “Is” has an indicative present active inflection and means that Jesus was and is in the process of judging the world.  This is beautiful.  He has been rejected by the Jewish nation, but He is in the process of defeating the whole world through the Cross!  See Jesus’ comments about judgment in John 3:18-19, 5:22, 9:39, 12:31, 12:48, 16:8, and 16:11. 


12:31b, “now the ruler of this world shall be cast out.” – “Ruler of this world” = Satan. Compare 13:2, 13:27, 14:30, and 16:11.  “Shall be cast out” employs a future tense and has a fulfillment at the end of the Great Tribulation.  See Revelation 20:1-3.  The Divine goal is to rid this world (spiritual universe too) of fallen angels.


12:32a, "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,” – 12:33 tells us that this phrase describes Jesus’ death on a Cross.  “Lifted up” and the Cross of Christ is also found in 3:14 and 8:28.  The grammatical form of this phrase is a protasis (a supposition clause) of a third class conditional sentence (more probable future condition).  Jesus spoke with a suppositional potential manner, to spiritually stimulate the Greeks (12:20-21) positive volition (“Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”).


12:32b, “will draw all men to Myself." - The grammatical form of this phrase is an apodosis (a statement clause based on a supposition) of a third class conditional sentence (more probable future condition).  This phrase describes the power of Christ’s death.  The Cross of Christ became and is the drawing point of humanity to God.  Note the “drawing” in 6:44 and compare 16:7-11.  God consciousness leads to Christ.


John 13:27-32, God’s Glorious Victory in the

Angelic ConflictThrough the Cross.


Background: During Jesus’ final Passover meal (13:1-2), God’s plan for ultimate victory in the Angelic Conflict was in place (13:2-3).  At the end of the meal, Jesus discussed His betrayal and facilitated the plan of the betrayers (13:21-27).  This betrayal facilitated His ultimate victory! 


13:27a, “And after the morsel, Satan then entered into him.” – The “morsel” represents the spiritual principle of blessing / forgiving your enemy to maintain one’s spiritual perspective.  Compare Romans 12:17-21.  “Entered into him” - Note 13:2 regarding Satan’s possession of Judas.


13:27b, Jesus therefore *said to him, "What you do, do quickly." – While Satan limited himself by possessing one individual, Jesus capitalized on the moment by urging haste—victory was at hand.


Skip to 13:31-32.


13:31a, ”When therefore he had gone out” – Satan was deceived into glorifying God by his own desire to usurp God.  See Isaiah 14:12-14.


13:31b, ‘Jesus *said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in Him;”’ – “Glorified” in both uses employs a passive voice and means that God receives glory from fallen angels in the Angelic Conflict


13:32a, if God is glorified in Him, - The grammatical form of this phrase is a protasis (a supposition clause) of a first class conditional sentence (simple condition of assumed reality) and can be translated: “Since God is glorified in Him,”


13:32b, “God will also glorify Him in Himself, and will glorify Him immediately. – The Cross of Christ glorifies God in the Angelic Conflict.


13:31and 32 Verse Titles (Meanings).


13:31, The Cross: The Divine coup de grace[1] in the Angelic Rebellion (compare

Matthew 4:8-9, Hebrews 2:14, 1 John 3:8, Colossians 1:20, Colossians 2:14-15, and 1 Peter 3:22.


13:31, The Cross: God has received ultimate vindication of His impugned character

during the Angelic Rebellion.  Compare 13:27-32 with Genesis 3:1-5 and Isaiah 14:12-14.


13:31-32; From the Divine perspective, the most satisfying verses in the Scriptures?!.

Glorious vindication all-around.


13:32; Bestow glory, get glory.



[1] Coup = a brilliantly executed stratagem; masterstroke. Coup de grace = 1. The mortal or finishing stroke, as delivered to someone mortally wounded. 2. Any finishing or decisive stroke (French: “stroke of mercy.”)