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Bible Commentaries
John 14

Gann's Commentary on the BibleGann on the Bible

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Verse 1

Chapter 13 closes with the disciples discouraged, and this provides the context for chapter 14 and Jesus’ encouragement for them to not let their hearts be troubled.

Trouble -- Used of Jesus - himself in John 11:33; John 12:27; John 13:21. He shares these experiences he would help us with.

Believe ... believe -- Both "believes" are alike. Probably Present imperatives.

** Faith minimizes our troubles and worries, 1 Peter 5:7

** Belief in Heaven increases our hope, 2 Corinthians 5:1

_ _ __ _ _

Jesus Give A 4-fold Remedy For Troubled Hearts

1. Believe in Me - v.1

2. Assurance of a Better Home - v.2-3

Ephesians 2:21, Matthew 7:24-25, 1 John 2:1-2, 2 Corinthians 5:1

3. We’re Giving Comfort While Waiting

1 Thessalonians 4:18

4. Jesus Promises to Come Again - v.3

Revelation 1:7, 1 Corinthians 15:51

- - - - - - - - -

The Resurrection Day (His Second Coming, -- Cf. "Last Day" singular) 1 Thessalonians 4:13 ff to 1 Thessalonians 5:11; 1 Corinthians 15:23-24 ff; John 14:1-3;

John 5:28; John 11:24; John 6:39; John 6:40; John 6:44;

Verse 2

John 14:2

Mansions -- = μονή, monē mon-ay’ used 2x, see John 14:23 ,

#3438, a staying place, residence, abode. Verb meno = 120 x abide.

The English word mansion does not rightly convey the word. The KJV took it from the Latin Vulgate mansiones, which means "stations", or temporary lodgings. But the Greek word means permanent abiding places.

Jesus’ picture seems to be a collery of the wedding scenes he often used in parables (see Matthew 25:1 ff). When a man became engaged he would add a room onto his father’s compound. He didn’t know just how long it would take him to complete it, but when he did he would go and get his new bride for the wedding ceremony and bring her back to their new residence in his father’s house.

If it were not so ... Alternate translation: "If it were not true, would I have told you?"

** The Point: Christ’s truthfulness relieves worries.

Song: "Heaven Holds All For Me"

Illustration: As a youth heaven meant gold streets and mansions; now as I am older heaven means friends and family, and sweet fellowship!

I go .... John 14:28 "I go to the Father."

Verse 3

Prepare a place ... As John and Peter prepared the upper room, Luke 22:8.

I will come again ... A reference to His second coming. The emphasis is not on judgment, but on coming to receive His own to dwell with Him. Hebrews 9:11 ff. He will come, not send for us. The early disciples looked eagerly for His return, and so should we.

Where I am -- One of the best definitions of heaven.

Heaven is:

1. A country - Hebrews 11:16

2. A city - Hebrews 11:10

3. A kingdom - 2 Peter 1:11

4. An inheritance - 1 Peter 1:4

5. A permanent abiding place with God - John 14:2

6. Not on earth - 2 Peter 3:8-10

The Prepared Place - While most understand this to be a reference to heaven and to the Lord’s second coming to take home those who are His, a few commentaries think it could be a reference to the church that Jesus was going to prepare, and come again in the mission of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost to receive His disciples into it.

Verse 4

John 14:4

The way -- is Jesus’ manner of life.

Verse 5

John 14:5

Thomas ... How puzzled the apostles were by Jesus’ comment. Thomas was thinking of a pathway for the feet.

Thomas seems to expect explicit directions, "go down Hwy 72, turn right onto Hwy 101..."

Verse 6

I ... "I" emphatic in the Greek

way ... was prophesied in Isaiah 35:8-10; Hebrews 10:20 "a new and living way"

truth ... John 8:32; Jesus is the source of Truth, John 1:17

life ... source of life, John 1:4; John 11:25; physical, spiritual, resurrected.

Verse 8

John 14:8

the Father ..They knew God but not as intimae as Father, as did Jesus.

Verse 10

John 14:10

See Ephesians 3:17 note on "Indwelling"

works ... miracles as anevidence of Jesus’ claim.

Verse 11

John 14:11

Believe me ... It was over their heads to believe in an incarnation of God (John 1:14). They must have thought Jesus to be just an incredibly "good man", but there were unexplainable works or miracles, walking on water, raising the dead, feeding multitudes. His teaching, His answers, so unexpected!

Verse 12

John 14:12

greater works ... "greater things" Greater because of a greater sphere of influence (3000 new disciples on Pentecost, etc. Acts 2:41.

Verse 13

John 14:13

Context of this remark is to the Apostles.

It is not said here to whom the prayer is addressed, but we should probably understand τὸν πατέρα as at John 15:16, John 16:23.

There is, however, an advance here on the teaching of John 15:16, John 16:23. In the former passages it is the Father who answers prayer, who gives what the faithful petitioner asks; but here and at v. 14 it is the Son who is to grant the boon, ποιήσω being twice repeated.

Verse 14

John 14:14

v.14 "ask me" is the Greek. “If ye shall ask me in my Name.” We have the insertion of με after αἰτήσητε.

(See note on vs. 13.)

Verse 15

John 14:15

If you love me: Because Jesus loves the Father, he is obedient to what God directs him to say and do (John 12:49). If we love him, we will obey him, too (John 14:21, John 14:23; John 15:10, John 15:14; see 1 John 2:3-4; 1 John 5:2).

keep, obey: Other manuscripts read you will obey; still others read you should obey.

keep ... "ye will keep" future indicative, cf John 14:21; John 14:23

Verse 16

John 14:16

Another of the same kind as Jesus. Jesus Himself was a "comforter", a paraclete.

Comforter ... paraclete - "to call to one’s side" "helper"

another Advocate -- or Comforter, or Encourager, or Counselor; Greek reads Paraclete; also in John 14:16

you ... the apostles; John 16:7; Acts 10:44

for ever -- all through their ministry.

Verse 17

John 14:17

Spirit of truth... Also in John 15:26; John 16:13. He communicates the truth (v. John 14:26; John 16:12-15) about Jesus, who is “the truth” (John 14:6).

you ... Remember this is Jesus’ address to his Apostles, just as he gave special instructions and blessings to the seventy when he sent them out Luke 10:4-9. To apply everything Jesus said to the Apostles to all believers is not proper hermeneutics.

IF we apply this statement to all believers we must be consistent with other passages in the NT in our understanding about the "indwelling" Spirit. (See note on Ephesians 3:17.)

dwelleth -- that is, “takes up residence” See John 14:23.

Verse 18

John 14:18

Comfortless -- "orphans" sense of bereavement.

I will come to you -- most likely means that Jesus will appear to the disciples after his resurrection (chs. 20–21).

Verse 19

John 14:19

because I live ... Jesus is prophesying His appearances after His resurrection.

Verse 20

John 14:20

At that day...This refers to His resurrection when He returns to them alive.

See Ephesians 3:17 note on "Indwelling"

Verse 22

John 14:22

This is the fourth interruption of the discourse by an apostle anxious to understand what was being said (cf. John 13:37, John 14:5, John 14:8); this time the speaker is Judas the son of James (Luke 6:16, Acts 1:13, who is also called Thaddeus Mark 3:18, Matthew 10:3.

Judas Iscariot had left the company some time before (John 13:30), but John is anxious that the name “Judas” shall not mislead.

Lord, why? ... Judas posed an important question. If Jesus planned to return mightily from death, why not use the opportunity to reveal himself definitively to the world and validate his power and identity? He was puzzled that Jesus would manifest Himself to them and not to the world.

Question: It seems often to us that Judas asked Jesus a good question; Why not show Himself to the world after His resurrection, why only to His disciples? What we do not know is what repercussions would have happened if the enemies now saw Jesus alive with His followers. They hated Him, didn’t believe who He was, nor would they accept His claim and teachings. They may have unleashed such a war and/or persecution against those also who followed Him and it would be so detrimental to the Truth and their cause. (For the extent of such persecution of the Jewish leaders against Christians, see note on Matthew 24:22; Mark 13:20 "unless those day had been cut short..." )

The disciples were still expecting Him to set up an earthly Messianic Kingdom and were greatly confused when He said, “the world will not see Me.” Jesus’ answer to Judas’ question in vv. 23 and 24 was that He will manifest Himself in the life of individual Christians and thereby the world will see Him through them!

He spoke of His death and His resurrection, by which He would appear again to His Apostles, but not to the worldly and unbelieving Jews. But Judas did not understand these words, and asked that they might be explained. The Lord answers him, Because these love, but the others do not love. Judas uses the word manifest, because Christ had just used the same expression, saying, I will manifest Myself to him.

Verse 23

John 14:23

If a man, let him be whosoever he may, love me—there is the germ and root of all—he will keep my Word. In ver. 21 we see the complementary statement, “He that has and keeps my commandments loves me;” here, “He that loves me keeps my Word.”

abode ... cf. John 14:2; (see note)

• Jesus’ coming would occur in three experiences: his resurrection, the coming of the Spirit, and his second coming. When he comes in the Spirit, he and the Father will reside within believers, making a home with each of them.

See Ephesians 3:17 note on "Indwelling"

Verse 24

John 14:24

keepeth not ... one who doesn’t love the Lord to the degree that he will subject himself to the Lord’s will and serve Him.

Verse 25

John 14:25

spoken to you -- Here Jesus makes us to understand these words were spoken specificly to the Apostles.

Verse 26

John 14:26

Comforter -- See 1 John 2:1 for wordstudy on Advocate, Comforter, Paraclete

you ... The context here is the Apostles, (see John 14:25) John 16:13, and not a promise of inspiration to all followers.

Teach you ... One purpose of Inspiration was to guide the Apostles’ memory of the thigs Jesus had taught them.

Verse 27

John 14:27

Peace ... The Jewish greeting peace (Hebrew shalom) captured the spirit of Jesus’ work on earth to restore humanity’s relationship with God (Isaiah 9:6-7; Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 57:19; Romans 5:1)

not as the world ... The pax Romana (“Roman peace”) was won and maintained by a brutal sword, and many Jews thought their Messiah would secure peace with an even mightier sword. Instead, the Messiah secured it by sacrificial death on the cross (Colossians 1:20).

Verse 28

John 14:28

the Father is greater than I ... The Father in his undiminished glory is greater than the Son in his incarnate state. This does not imply that Jesus is less than fully God because “greater than” does not refer to their being and essence.

The difference in roles between the Father and the Son means the Father sends his Son into the world and the Son obeys (v. 31); the Father “shows” him what to do and the Son performs it (John 5:20).

Verse 29

John 14:29

have told you before it comes ... Fulfilled prophecy is a great proof and evidence to believers (cf. Isaiah 46:8-10). Jesus had predicted His death and resurrection many times (e.g., Mark 8:31-32; Mark 9:31). When this came to pass, after their initial shock, it would greatly help their faith.

Verse 30

John 14:30

prince of this world ... Satan. Already at work in Judas, now come to do his best against Judas.

hath nothing in me ... meaning Satan "has no power over me." He found no sin in Jesus - thus he had no claim. Jesus’ righteousness conquored the grave! John 16:33

Verse 31

John 14:31

that the world may know ... But that— all’ ina is an elliptical - meaning, "But I do this so that ..." .

That the World May Know - (The teaching theme of Ray Vandervan’s great lessons on the Bible lands and faith lessons.)

Arise, let us go -- This probably indicates that Jesus and his followers now leave the Upper Room and embark on their walk in the night, perhaps passing vineyards on the way, which would provide a fitting backdrop for Jesus’ teaching on the vine and the branches (John 15:1 –17).

Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on John 14". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gbc/john-14.html. 2021.
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