So I've got a Muslim person trying to prove their religion through the Bible.

To them, Jesus wasn't crucified but he immediately ascended.

That Muslim person says in John 14:28, Jesus says "I am going to the Father" before his crucifixion, which seems a bit strange indeed. Why would Jesus say he is going to the father before his crucifixion?

A Christian commentary says "going to the Father" meant death by crucifixion, but I dont see how.

Can anyone tell me?

  • 1
    He says this in the context of talking about sending the Holy Spirit. That being the case, it would seem Jesus is talking about His Ascension, which won't happen for another forty-some days. Personally, my response to a Muslim trying to use the Bible to "prove" their faith would be to show them all the ways Islam contradicts the Bible, rather than focus on some specific and obscure claim they are making.
    – Matthew
    Commented Jun 15, 2022 at 18:17
  • @Matthew But why did Jesus talk of the ascension before his crucifixion? That's the thing.. Commented Jun 15, 2022 at 18:36
  • Because that was the plan - Jesus was telling them about the plan all along, they didn't understand most until it happened. He told them ahead of time so it would reinforce what he said when it finally happened.
    – steveowen
    Commented Jun 15, 2022 at 22:54
  • 3
    1. After he voluntarily expired, a witness present (John) testifies to a lance being thrust in Jesus' dead body and blood and water proceeding from the wound. The same witness who states John 14:28 also states seeing the dead body. 2, 'I am going' is (in English) a future tense. Jesus is talking about something in the future. It could be anytime in the future. The text is not specific. There is nothing to answer, here. I think we need more detail and clarity to have something to answer.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Jun 16, 2022 at 11:23

1 Answer 1


The 14th chapter of John begins with Jesus saying, "In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."

A little later (v. 19-20) Jesus says, "Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you."

When we come to the verse in question it reads:

Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. - John 14:28-29

Jesus is, yet again, explaining to his disciples that He is going to be killed, rise again, and (as expounded in John) ascend to the Father. In Luke 18 and Matthew 20 we have Jesus explaining this for the third time as follows:

Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again. And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken. - Luke 18:31-34

Taken all together, when Jesus says he is "going to the Father" this phrase is inclusive of the entire process of being delivered unto the Gentiles, being mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on, and being scourged and put to death, and the third day rising again.. This is how He went to the Father. He is not saying that He is going to go prior to His crucifixion, He is explaining yet again that the crucifixion is part of how He is going to go.

  • But why doesn't Jesus say it explicitly that "Going to the father" means that... Commented Jun 16, 2022 at 22:47
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    He told his disciples multiple times that he would be killed and rise again and they did not understand. The same can happen with folks today and plain speech will not help. Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 12:51
  • But you didn't answer the question. Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 20:33
  • Look at Matthew 26, especially verses 2 and 24 and Mark 14, especially verse 21. He was fairly plain in speech about what was happening. Commented Jun 19, 2022 at 10:44
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    @Elmatador DeAngel Mike Borden answered the question in his first paragraph which quotes Jesus' words as to one reason why he was returning to the Father. Other reasons why are given in Hebrews ch.8 & 9:24. It's a mistake to muddle "why" with "when". The key word for Muslims is that Jesus said he was "returning" to the Father (Jn.13:3 & 20:17) for they don't believe he was with the Father in heaven before coming to earth. That issue needs facing up to, I suggest, if clarity is to come.
    – Anne
    Commented Jun 23, 2022 at 12:54

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