The Life-Generating Death
John 12:23 And Jesus answered them, saying, The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. (24) Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. (31) Now is the judgment of this world; now shall the ruler of this world be cast out. (32) And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.
1 Pet 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has regenerated us unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
The Lord Jesus fell into the ground and died that His divine element, His divine life, might be released from within the shell of His humanity to produce many believers in resurrection (1 Pet. 1:3), just as a grain of wheat has its life element released by falling into the ground and growing up out of the ground to bear much fruit, that is, to bring forth many grains. Instead of receiving a warm welcome, the Lord preferred to fall into the ground and die as a grain of wheat that He might produce many grains for the church. The Lord, as a grain of wheat falling into the ground, lost His soulish life through death that He might release His eternal life in resurrection to the “many grains.”
In chapter twelve of John the Lord’s death is not revealed as the redeeming death [a lamb dying for our sins as spoken of in John 1:29], but as the producing, generating death. According to this chapter, by His death the Lord had His incarnation shell broken that He might accomplish three purposes: to produce the many grains, draw all men to Himself (vv. 24, 32); to release the divine element, the eternal life (vv. 23); and to judge the world and cast out its ruler (v. 31).