I. Respecting authority (7:1-10). A Roman, sympathetic to Jewish religion, understood more about Jesus’ authority than even the Jews (cf. John 1:11-12).
II. Respecting life (7:11-17). As the small community paid their respects to a young man having died, the Lord paid His respect to the grieving mother. The response they gave Him, was the response He desired.
III. Respecting John (7:18-35). John’s perplexity gave Jesus the opportunity to remind the people of John’s mission. He was that voice in the wilderness paving the way for the coming Messiah. Those who thought highly of themselves, he brought low – that is, he helped them to realize their need for a Savior (for they were spiritually lost); those who thought little of themselves, he was able to help them understand that they also could receive the same Savior. Now, the way was already paved, and the Savior was walking the path preaching to the affluent and non-affluent alike.
IV. Respecting a woman (7:36-50). One’s social standing can encourage one to look at life dismally. Whatever sins plagued the lonely woman’s life, Jesus knew them all. He also knew that her standing in the community was one of great disrespect. The one who was so lightly regarded came to One so esteemed. She came empty, she left full of life, having it more abundantly.