Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, December 5th, 2023
the First Week of Advent
Tired of seeing ads while studying? Now you can enjoy an "Ads Free" version of the site for as little as 10¢ a day and support a great cause!
Click here to learn more!

Bible Commentaries
John 15

Gann's Commentary on the BibleGann on the Bible

Search for…
Enter query below:
Additional Authors

Verse 1

John 15:1

I am ... 7th and last "I am" statement.

husbandman ... vinedresser, gardener, - farmer, "a land worker, a tiller of the soil" - not just vinedresser. One responsible for vines in 1st century.

γεωργός =geōrgós; gen. geōrgoú, masc. noun from gḗ (G1093), ground, earth, land, and érgon (G2041), work. A farmer, husbandman, one who tills the earth or ground (2 Timothy 2:6; James 5:7; Sept.: Jeremiah 14:4; Jeremiah 31:24; Jeremiah 51:23).

The imagery alludes to OT depictions of Israel as Yahweh’s vineyard (Isaiah 5:1-7 Psalms 80:8-9). Jesus replaces Israel as the central focus of Yahweh’s plan of salvation, fulfilling the role of Israel as the true vine.

Verse 2

John 15:2

Branch ... Not to be identified as "denominations" or churches, but identified in John 15:6 as a "man", thus, the branches are individuals.

prunes ... Gardeners cut away dead branches and trim healthy branches so they will produce more fruit.

He takes away... The picture is of the vinedresser (i.e., the Father) getting rid of dead wood so that the living, fruit bearing branches may be sharply distinguished. This is a picture of apostate Christians who don’t truly obey the Lord will be taken away in judgment (v. 6; Matthew 7:16; Ephesians 2:10);

Verse 3

John 15:3

clean ... "Teaching" has a way of cleaning, or keeping a disciple right. Example: a parent’s word to his child. A teacher, a powerful mentor.

Cleansing ...= pruning, v.2, v.6

Verse 4

John 15:4

Abide ... see note on John 14:2; = remain, continue to reside, cf Colossians 2:6

Verse 5

John 15:5

vine -- branches ... Just as the branches reside and depend on the vine-trunk, so the disicples must abide (remain) in Jesus and depend on Him.

Verse 6

John 15:6

Calvanist who believe in "once saved, always saved" have a difficult time with this verse. See BKC how they hedge around it and deny it.

The verse echoes Ezekiel 15:1-8, where a vine failing to produce fruit is said to be good for nothing but the fire (see Hebrews 6:7-8). Fire is a common Jewish and biblical symbol for divine judgment (e.g., Isaiah 30:27; Matthew 3:12 cf. Matthew 5:22; Matthew 18:8; Matthew 25:41). Some

Verse 7

John 15:7

in me ... Jesus abides in us (v.5) by His words abiding in us. "If one feeds on the Word, I’m a great believer in following intuition." This is teaching and experience and wisdom at work (emotions). Jesus abiding in us, being led by his words, and the weight we give to them. See Ephesians 3:17

Two conditions are given for answered prayer: 1) abiding in Jesus, and 2) his words abiding in believers (thus transforming their thinking). Elsewhere Jesus says that believers must ask in his name (i.e., in accord with his character and for his glory; see John 14:13-14; John 16:23-24).

Verse 8

John 15:8

God is glorified not by praise and worship alone but by his followers also bearing much fruit for the advancement of his kingdom on earth. Here again, fruit bearing is evidence of being Jesus’ disciples.

Verse 9

John 15:9

We "continue" in loving Him by heeding his Word, John 15:7

Verse 10

John 15:10

For the converse, see John 14:15.

Verse 11

John 15:11

your joy may be full... Just as Jesus maintained that His obedience to the Father was the basis of His joy, so also the disciples who are obedient to His commandments will experience the same joy (John 17:13; cf. John 16:24).

full ... complete; The purpose of His teaching is to give man an abundant life, not a joyless existence (John 10:10).

Verse 12

John 15:12

For Paraell see John 13:34

Verse 13

John 15:13

cf Romans 5:8

Verse 14

John 15:14

do ... presence tense, continued obedience is necessary to remain in Christ.

Verse 15

John 15:15

I have made known ... All revelation of truth has come to us through Christ. cf. John 1:17; 2 Peter 1:3;

Verse 16

John 15:16

whatever you ask ... Remember, this was spoken to the Apostles and has to do with signs, wonders, and miracles they might need/use to confirm their word, cf. Mark 16:20; Hebrews 2:3-4;

cf. Acts 3:6; - What is asked must be in harmony with their work and God’s will.

Verse 17

John 15:17

command ... How can love be commanded? This is agapate love, which is "good will" "highest respect, admiration" (social and moral sense) and is not the phileo love which is "brotherly" and more like family.

Verse 18

John 15:18

hate you ... (elipsis) Since Satan is the one who dominates the evil world system in rebellion against God (John 14:30), the result is that the world hates not only Jesus, but those who follow Him (2 Timothy 3:12).

MacArthur, J., Jr. (Ed.). (1997). The MacArthur Study Bible (electronic ed., p. 1616). Nashville, TN: Word Pub.

Verse 19

John 15:19

therefore the world hates you... Christians should not be surprised that unbelievers in the world hate them. It follows a pattern seen in the world since Cain murdered Abel (see Genesis 4:8; Hebrews 11:4; 1 John 3:12), and it is seen in the world’s reactions to Christ himself (see John 15:18).

Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2056). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

By being warned in advanced we should not be surprised.

Verse 20

John 15:20

cf. John 13:16

keep my ... keep yours ... Hearing Christ’s word is hearing God; and hearing the Apostle’s word is hearing Christ.

persecute -- . Somthing Christians can expect.

Verse 21

John 15:21

for My name’s sake ... Jesus was hence referring to the apostle’s persecution by the hands of religious Jewish leaders. But it has also been true throughout history of "Christians" persecuting "Christians" in the name of orthodoxy.

Verse 22

John 15:22

If I had not come ... [Good topic and lesson for a sermon.]

have no sin ... (claimed ignorance)

They would not have been guilty of sin does not mean all sin (see Romans 3:23), but the specific sin of rejecting the supreme revelation of God that came in Christ himself, a sin that is particularly manifested in hating Christ (see John 15:23-24,). their

Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2056). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

Verse 24

John 15:24

But now they have no excuse: Jesus’ ministry provided both words (John 15:22) and works (John 15:24) as evidence that pointed to God. The Jewish leaders were now guilty of rejecting both God and the Messiah He sent them.

Verse 25

John 15:25

Jesus declares that the Jews’ hatred of him fulfills OT Scripture, specifically Psalms 69:4 (cf. Ps. 35:19; also note on Isaiah 6:9-10).

Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2056). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

Verse 26

John 15:26

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

you ... the Apostles. Inspired witnesses who confirmed their word with miracles. Luke 24:48; Acts 1:8; Acts 2:16-17; Acts 2:32; Acts 5:32

testify ... "bear witness"

Verse 27

John 15:27

bear witness ... Who? The Apostles. What does the scripture mean when it speaks to "bear witness"? Of what where they a witness? (And can one be such a "witness" as this today? No! We may "testify" or "witness?" what God has done in our lives, but not a "witness" in the New Testament sense!) They were "witnesses" of His resurrection!

witness ... Acts 10:39-42; Acts 1:1-3; Acts 1:8; Acts 13:30-31; Observe a qualification to be an "apostle of Christ" Acts 1:21-22; 1) of Jesus’ life, teaching, and miracles; 2) Holy Spirit in a miraculous way worked through them confirming their testimony; Acts 2:39; Acts 3:15; Acts 4:19-20; Acts 5:32; Acts 10:39;

the beginning ... The beginning of Jesus’ ministry from the baptism of John, Acts 1:22.

Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on John 15". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gbc/john-15.html. 2021.
adsFree icon
Ads FreeProfile