After these things (μετα ταυτα meta tauta). A common, but indefinite, note of time in John (John 3:22; John 5:1; John 6:1; John 7:1). The phrase does not mean immediate sequence of events. As a matter of fact, a whole year may intervene between the events of chapter 5 in Jerusalem and those in chapter 6 in Galilee. There is no sufficient reason for believing that chapter 6 originally preceded chapter 5. The feeding of the five thousand is the only event before the last visit to Jerusalem recorded in all Four Gospels (Mark 6:30-44; Matthew 14:13-21; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:1-13). The disciples have returned from the tour of Galilee and report to Jesus. It was the passover time (John 6:4) just a year before the end.To the other side of the Sea of Galilee (περαν της ταλασσης της Γαλιλαιας peran tēs thalassēs tēs Galilaias). The name given in Mark and Matthew. It is called Gennesaret in Luke 5:1 and “Sea of Tiberias” in John 21:1. Here “of Tiberias” (της Τιβεριαδος tēs Tiberiados) is added as further description. Herod Antipas a.d. 22 built Tiberias to the west of the Sea of Galilee and made it his capital. See John 6:23 for this city. Luke (Luke 9:10) explains that it was the eastern Bethsaida (Julias) to which Jesus took the disciples, not the western Bethsaida of Mark 6:45 in Galilee.
Followed (ηκολουτει ēkolouthei). Descriptive imperfect active, picturing the crowd, but without the details of the boat for Christ and the rapid race of the crowd on foot (Mark 6:32.; Matthew 14:13.).They beheld (ετεωρουν etheōroun). Imperfect active of τεωρεω theōreō They had been beholding the signs which Jesus had been doing (εποιει epoiei imperfect again) for a long time (John 2:23), most of which John has not given (Mark 1:29.; Mark 2:1; Mark 3:1; Mark 6:5). The people were eager to hear Jesus again (Luke 9:11) and to get the benefit of his healing power “on them that were sick” (επι των αστενουντων epi tōn asthenountōn the weak or feeble, without strength, α a privative and στενος sthenos strength).
Into the mountain (εις το ορος eis to oros). From the level of the Jordan valley up into the high hill on the eastern side. Mark (Mark 6:46) and Matthew (Matthew 14:23) mention that after the miracle Jesus went further up into the mountain to pray.Sat (εκατητο ekathēto). Imperfect middle of κατημαι kathēmai was sitting, a picture of repose.
The feast of the Jews (η εορτη των Ιουδαιων hē heortē tōn Ioudaiōn). Here used of the passover (το πασχα to pascha) as in John 7:2 of the tabernacles. This is probably the third passover in Christ‘s ministry (John 2:13 and one unmentioned unless John 5:1 be it). In John 2:13, here, and John 11:55 (the last one) the adverb εγγυς eggus (near) is used. John is fond of notes of time. Jesus failed to go to this passover because of the hostility in Jerusalem (John 7:1).
Lifting up his eyes (επαρας τους οπταλμους eparas tous ophthalmous). First aorist active participle of επαιρω epairō See the same phrase in John 4:35 where it is also followed by τεαομαι theaomai John 11:41; John 17:1; Luke 6:20. Here it is particularly expressive as Jesus looked down from the mountain on the approaching multitude.Cometh unto him (ερχεται προς αυτον erchetai pros auton). Present middle indicative, “is coming to him.” The same οχλος πολυς ochlos polus (here πολυς οχλος polus ochlos) of John 6:2 that had followed Jesus around the head of the lake. Whence are we to buy? (Ποτεν αγορασωμεν Pothen agorasōmen). Deliberative subjunctive (aorist active). John passes by the earlier teaching and healing of the Synoptics (Mark 6:34.; Matthew 14:14.; Luke 9:11.) till mid-afternoon. In John also Jesus takes up the matter of feeding the multitude with Philip (from the other Bethsaida, John 1:44) whereas in the Synoptics the disciples raise the problem with Jesus. So the disciples raise the problem in the feeding of the four thousand (Mark 8:4; Matthew 15:33). See Numbers 11:13-22 (about Moses) and 2 Kings 4:42. (about Elisha). Bread (αρτους artous). “Loaves” (plural) as in Matthew 4:3. That these may eat (ινα παγωσιν ουτοι hina phagōsin houtoi). Purpose clause with ινα hina and the second aorist active subjunctive of εστιω esthiō (defective verb).
To prove him (πειραζων αυτον peirazōn auton). Present active participle of πειραζω peirazō testing him, not here in bad sense of tempting as so often (Matthew 4:1).What he would do (τι ημελλεν ποιειν ti ēmellen poiein). Indirect question with change of tense to imperfect. As in John 2:25 so here John explains why Jesus put the question to Philip.
Two hundred pennyworth of bread (διακοσιων δηναριων αρτοι diakosiōn dēnariōn artoi). “Loaves of two hundred denarii.” The Roman coin originally for ten asses (afterwards sixteen), about 16-2/3 cents. The denarius was the usual pay for a day‘s labour (Matthew 20:2, Matthew 20:9, Matthew 20:13). This item in Mark 6:37, but not in Matthew or Luke.That every one may take a little (ινα εκαστος βραχυ λαβηι hina hekastos brachu labēi). Final clause with ινα hina and second aorist active subjunctive of λαμβανω lambanō This detail in John alone.
One of (εις εκ heis ek). So in John 12:4; John 13:23; Mark 13:1 without εκ ekSimon Peter‘s brother (ο αδελπος Σιμωνος Πετρου ho adelphos Simōnos Petrou). So described in John 1:40. The great distinction of Andrew was precisely this that he brought Simon to Christ. Philip and Andrew appear together again in John 12:20-22, but in the Synoptics he is distinguished only in Mark 13:3. In the Muratorian Fragment Andrew received the revelation for John to write the Fourth Gospel.
A lad here (παιδαριον ωδε paidarion hōde). Old word, diminutive of παις pais here only in N.T., not genuine in Matthew 11:16. How he came to have this small supply we do not know.Barley (κριτινους krithinous). Adjective, here and John 6:13 only in N.T., in the papyri, from κριτη krithē barley (Revelation 6:6). Considered an inferior sort of bread. Fishes (οπσαρια opsaria). Late diminutive of οπσον opson common in papyri and inscriptions for delicacies with bread like fish. In N.T. only here, John 6:11; John 21:9-13. Synoptics have ιχτυας ichthuas f0).
Sit down (αναπεσειν anapesein). Literally, “fall back,” lie down, recline. Second aorist active infinitive of αναπιπτω anapiptōMuch grass (χορτος πολυς chortos polus). Old word for pasture, green grass (Mark 6:39) or hay (1 Corinthians 3:12). It was spring (John 6:4) and plenty of green grass on the hillside. The men (οι ανδρες hoi andres). Word for men as distinct from women, expressly stated in Matthew 14:21. In number (τον αριτμον ton arithmon). Adverbial accusative (of general reference). About (ος hos). General estimate, though they were arranged in orderly groups by hundreds and fifties, “in ranks” like “garden beds” (πρασιαι prasiai Mark 6:40).
The loaves (τους αρτους tous artous). Those of John 6:9.Having given thanks (ευχαριστησας eucharistēsas). The usual grace before meals (Deuteronomy 8:10). The Synoptics use “blessed” ευλογησεν eulogēsen (Mark 6:41; Matthew 14:19; Luke 9:16). He distributed (διεδωκεν diedōken). First aorist active indicative of διαδιδωμι diadidōmi old verb to give to several (δια dia between). To them that were set down (τοις ανακειμενοις tois anakeimenois). Present middle participle (dative case) of ανακειμαι anakeimai old verb to recline like αναπεσειν anapesein in John 6:10. As much as they would (οσον ητελον hoson ēthelon). Imperfect active of τελω thelō “as much as they wished.”
And when they were filled (ως δε ενεπληστησαν hōs de eneplēsthēsan). First aorist (effective) passive indicative of εμπιμπλημι empimplēmi old verb to fill in, to fill up, to fill completely. They were all satisfied. The Synoptics have εχορταστησαν echortasthēsan like John 6:26 (εχορταστητε echortasthēte).Gather up (συναγαγετε sunagagete). Second aorist active imperative of συναγω sunagō to gather together. Broken pieces (κλασματα klasmata). From κλαω klaō to break. Not crumbs or scraps on the ground, but pieces broken by Jesus (Mark 6:41) and not consumed. Be lost (αποληται apolētai). Second aorist middle subjunctive of απολλυμι apollumi with ινα hina in purpose clause. Only in John. There was to be no wastefulness in Christ‘s munificence. The Jews had a custom of leaving something for those that served.
Twelve baskets (δωδεκα κοπινους dōdeka kophinous). One for each of the apostles. What about the lad? Stout wicker baskets (coffins, Wycliff) in distinction from the soft and frail σπυριδες sphurides used at the feeding of the four thousand (Mark 8:8; Matthew 15:37). Here all the Gospels (Mark 6:43; Matthew 14:20; Luke 9:17; John 6:13) use κοπινοι kophinoi The same distinction between κοπινοι kophinoi and σπυριδες sphurides is preserved in the allusion to the incidents by Jesus in Mark 8:19, Mark 8:20; Matthew 16:9, Matthew 16:10.Unto them that had eaten (τοις βεβρωκοσιν tois bebrōkosin). Articular perfect active participle (dative case) of βιβρωσκω bibrōskō old verb to eat, only here in N.T., though often in lxx.
Saw the sign which he did (ιδοντες α εποιησεν σημεια idontes ha epoiēsen sēmeia). “Signs” oldest MSS. have. This sign added to those already wrought (John 6:2). Cf. John 2:23; John 3:2.They said (ελεγον elegon). Inchoative imperfect, began to say. Of a truth (αλητως alēthōs). Common adverb (from αλητης alēthēs) in John (John 7:40). The prophet that cometh (ο προπητης ο ερχομενος ho prophētēs ho erchomenos). There was a popular expectation about the prophet of Deuteronomy 18:15 as being the Messiah (John 1:21; John 11:27). The phrase is peculiar to John, but the idea is in Acts (Acts 3:22; Acts 7:37). The people are on the tiptoe of expectation and believe that Jesus is the political Messiah of Pharisaic hope.
Perceiving (γνους gnous). Second aorist active participle of γινωσκω ginōskō It was not hard for Christ to read the mind of this excited mob.They were about (μελλουσιν mellousin). Present active indicative of μελλω mellō Probably the leaders were already starting. Take him by force (αρπαζειν harpazein). Present active infinitive of αρπαζω harpazō old verb for violent seizing (Matthew 11:12; Matthew 13:19). There was a movement to start a revolution against Roman rule in Palestine by proclaiming Jesus King and driving away Pilate. To make him king (ινα ποιησωσιν βασιλεα hina poiēsōsin basilea). Purpose clause with ινα hina and the first aorist active subjunctive of ποιεω poieō with βασιλεα basilea as predicate accusative. It was a crisis that called for quick action. Himself alone (αυτος μονος autos monos). At first he had the disciples with him (John 6:3). But he sent them hurriedly by boat to the western side (Mark 6:45.; Matthew 14:22.) because clearly the apostles were sympathetic with the revolutionary impulse of the crowd. Then Jesus sent the multitudes away also and went up into the mountain alone. He was alone in every sense, for no one but the Father understood him at this stage, not even his own disciples. He went up to pray (Mark 6:46; Matthew 14:23).
When evening came (ως οπσια εγενετο hōs opsia egeneto). “The late hour” (ωρα hōra understood), and so in late Greek the adjective is used as a substantive. It is late evening (real evening), not the early evening in mid-afternoon (Matthew 14:15). The disciples were in no hurry to start back to Bethsaida in Galilee (Mark 6:45), Capernaum in John (John 6:17).
Were going (ηρχοντο ērchonto). Picturesque imperfect.It was now dark (σκοτια ηδη εγεγονει skotia ēdē egegonei). Past perfect active of γινομαι ginomai While they were going, “darkness had already come.” And Jesus had not yet come to them (και ουκ εληλυτει προς αυτους ο Ιησους kai ouk elēluthei pros autous ho Iēsous). Another past perfect active of ερχομαι erchomai with negative ουπω oupō Darkness had come, but Jesus had not come, while they were going over the sea. The tenses in these verses are very graphic.
And the sea was rising (η τε ταλασσα διεγειρετο hē te thalassa diegeireto). Imperfect (without augment) passive of διεγειρω diegeirō late compound to wake up thoroughly, to arouse.By reason of a great wind that blew (ανεμου μεγαλου πνεοντος anemou megalou pneontos). Genitive absolute with present active participle of πνεω pneō to blow, “a great wind blowing.”
When therefore they had rowed (εληλακοτες ουν elēlakotes oun). Perfect active participle of ελαυνω elaunō old verb to march (Xenophon), to drive (James 3:4), to row (Mark 6:48).Furlongs (σταδιους stadious). Stadia, accusative of extent of space, a little over halfway across, “in the midst of the sea” (Mark 6:47). It was about forty stadia (six miles) across. They behold (τεωρουσιν theōrousin). Graphic dramatic present active indicative of τεωρεω theōreō vividly preserving the emotions of the disciples. Walking (περιπατουντα peripatounta). Present active participle in the accusative case agreeing with Ιησουν Iēsoun Drawing nigh unto the boat (εγγυς του πλοιου γινομενον eggus tou ploiou ginomenon). Present middle participle of γινομαι ginomai describing the process. “Coming near the boat.” They behold Jesus slipping closer and closer to them on the water. They were afraid (εποβητησαν ephobēthēsan). Ingressive aorist passive indicative of ποβεομαι phobeomai “they became afraid.” Sudden change to the regular historical sequence.
Be not afraid (μη ποβειστε mē phobeisthe). Prohibition with μη mē and present middle imperative of ποβεομαι phobeomai So in Mark 6:50 (Matthew 14:27). John does not tell that the disciples thought Jesus was an apparition (Mark 6:49; Matthew 14:26), nor does he give the account of Peter walking on the water (Matthew 14:28-31).
They were willing therefore (ητελον ουν ēthelon oun). Inchoative imperfect, “they began to be willing.” This does not contradict Mark 6:51 as Bernard thinks. Both Jesus and Peter climbed into the boat.Whither they were going (εις ην υπηγον eis hēn hupēgon). Progressive imperfect active, “to which land they had been going” (intransitive use of υπαγω hupagō to lead under, to go under or away as in John 6:67; John 7:33; John 12:11; John 18:8.
Which stood (ο εστηκως ho hestēkōs). Perfect active (intransitive) participle of ιστημι histēmi to put, to stand. Jesus had sent the multitudes away the evening before (Mark 6:45; Matthew 14:22), but evidently some did not go very far, still lingering in excitement on the eastern side of the lake next morning.Boat (πλοιαριον ploiarion). Diminutive of πλοιον ploion little boat (Mark 3:9). Entered not with (ου συνεισηλτεν ou suneisēlthen). Second aorist active of the double compound verb συνεισερχομαι suneiserchomai followed by associative instrumental case ματηταις mathētais Went away alone (μονοι απηλτον monoi apēlthon). Second aorist active indicative of απερχομαι aperchomai to go away or off. Μονοι Monoi is predicate nominative. These people noted these three items.
Howbeit (αλλα alla). John 6:23 is really an explanatory parenthesis in this long sentence. Tiberias, capital of Herod Antipas, diagonally across the lake, is only mentioned in John in the N.T. (John 6:1, John 6:23; John 21:1).Boats (πλοια ploia). Called “little boats” (πλοιαρια ploiaria) in John 6:24.
When the multitude therefore saw (οτε ουν ειδεν ο οχλος hote oun eiden ho ochlos). Resumption and clarification of the complicated statements of John 6:22.That Jesus was not there (οτι Ιησους ουκ εστιν εκει hoti Iēsous ouk estin ekei). Present indicative retained in indirect discourse. They still did not understand how Jesus had crossed over, but they acted on the basis of the plain fact. They themselves got into (ενεβησαν αυτοι εις enebēsan autoi eis). Second aorist active indicative of εμβαινω embainō followed by εις eis (both εν en and εις eis together as often in N.T.). Seeking Jesus (ζητουντες τον Ιησουν zētountes ton Iēsoun). Present active participle of ζητεω zēteō They had a double motive apart from the curiosity explained in John 6:22. They had clearly not given up the impulse of the evening before to make Jesus king (John 6:15) and they had hopes of still another bountiful repast at the hands of Jesus as he said (John 6:26).
When they found him (ευροντες αυτον heurontes auton). Second aorist active participle of ευρισκω heuriskō Found him after search and in the synagogue as John explains (John 6:59) in Capernaum, perhaps that very synagogue built by a centurion (Luke 7:5).Rabbi (αββει Rabbei). See note on John 1:38 for this courteous title. When camest thou hither? (ποτε ωδε γεγονασ pote hōde gegonas). Second perfect active indicative of γινομαι ginomai “When hast thou come?” We sought you anxiously on the other side of the lake and could not see how you came across (John 6:22-24).
Not because ye saw signs (ουχ οτι ειδετε σημεια ouch hoti eidete sēmeia). Second aorist active indicative of the defective verb οραω horaō They had seen the “signs” wrought by Jesus (John 6:2), but this one had led to wild fanaticism (John 6:14) and complete failure to grasp the spiritual lessons.But because ye ate of the loaves (αλλ οτι επαγετε εκ των αρτων all' hoti ephagete ek tōn artōn). Second aorist active indicative of εστιω esthiō defective verb. Ye were filled (εχορταστητε echortasthēte). First aorist passive indicative of χορταζω chortazō from χορτος chortos (grass) as in John 6:10, to eat grass, then to eat anything, to satisfy hunger. They were more concerned with hungry stomachs than with hungry souls. It was a sharp and deserved rebuke.
Work not for (μη εργαζεστε mē ergazesthe). Prohibition with μη mē and present middle imperative of εργαζομαι ergazomai old verb from εργον ergon work.The meat (την βρωσιν tēn brōsin). The act of eating (Romans 14:17), corrosion (Matthew 6:19), the thing eaten as here (2 Corinthians 9:10). See note on John 4:32. Which perisheth (tēn apollumenēn). Present middle participle of apollumi They were already hungry again. Unto eternal life (την απολλυμενην eis zōēn aiōnion). Mystical metaphor quite beyond this crowd hungry only for more loaves and fishes. Bernard thinks that John has here put together various sayings of Christ to make one discourse, a gratuitous interpretation. Will give (απολλυμι dōsei). Future active indicative of εις ζωην αιωνιον didōmi The outcome is still future and will be decided by their attitude towards the Son of man (John 6:51). For him the Father, even God, hath sealed (δωσει touton gar ho patēr esphragisen ho theos). Literally, “For this one the Father sealed, God.” First aorist active indicative of διδωμι sphragizō to seal. See elsewhere in John 3:33 (attestation by man). Sealing by God is rare in N.T. (2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13; Ephesians 4:30). It is not clear to what item, if any single one, John refers when the Father set his seal of approval on the Son. It was done at his baptism when the Holy Spirit came upon him and the Father spoke to him. Cf. John 5:37.
What must we do? (Τι ποιωμεν Ti poiōmen). Present active deliberative subjunctive of ποιεω poieō “What are we to do as a habit?” For the aorist subjunctive (ποιησωμεν poiēsōmen) in a like question for a single act see Luke 3:10. For the present indicative (ποιουμεν poioumen) of inquiry concerning actual conduct see John 11:47 (what are we doing?).That we may work the works of God (ινα εργαζωμετα τα εργα του τεου hina ergazōmetha ta erga tou theou). Final clause with ινα hina and the present middle subjunctive, “that we may go on working the works of God.” There may have been an element of vague sincerity in this question in spite of their supercilious attitude.
The work of God that ye believe (το εργον του τεου ινα πιστευητε to ergon tou theou hina pisteuēte). In 1 Thessalonians 1:3 Paul speaks of “your work of faith” (υμων του εργου της πιστεως humōn tou ergou tēs pisteōs). So here Jesus terms belief in him as the work of God. These Jews were thinking of various deeds of the Pharisaic type and rules. Jesus turns their minds to the central fact. “This simple formula contains the complete solution of the relation of faith and works” (Westcott). Note the present active subjunctive πιστευητε pisteuēte “that ye may keep on believing.”On him whom he hath sent (εις ον απεστειλεν εκεινος eis hon apesteilen ekeinos). The pronominal antecedent (εις τουτον ον eis touton hon) is omitted and the preposition εις eis is retained with the relative ον hon really the direct object of απεστειλεν apesteilen (sent). Note εκεινος ekeinos for God (emphatic he).
For a sign (σημειον sēmeion). Predicate accusative, as a sign, with τι ti (what). As if the sign of the day before was without value. Jesus had said that they did not understand his signs (John 6:26).That we may see, and believe thee (ινα ιδωμεν και πιστευσωμεν hina idōmen kai pisteusōmen). Purpose clause with ινα hina and the second aorist (ingressive) active subjunctive of οραω horaō and the first aorist (ingressive) active subjunctive of πιστευω pisteuō “that we may come to see and come to have faith in thee.” It is hard to have patience with this superficial and almost sneering mob. What workest thou? (Τι εργαζηι Ti ergazēi). They not simply depreciate the miracle of the day before, but set up a standard for Jesus.
Ate the manna (το μαννα επαγον to manna ephagon). The rabbis quoted Psalm 72:16 to prove that the Messiah, when he comes, will outdo Moses with manna from heaven. Jesus was claiming to be the Messiah and able to give bread for eternal life (John 6:27). Lightfoot (Biblical Essays, p. 152) says: “The key to the understanding of the whole situation is an acquaintance with the national expectation of the greater Moses.” They quote to Jesus Exodus 16:15 (of. Numbers 11:7; Numbers 21:5; Deuteronomy 8:3). Their plea is that Moses gave us bread “from heaven” (εκ του ουρανου ek tou ouranou). Can Jesus equal that deed of Moses?
It was not Moses that gave you (ου Μωυσης εδωκεν υμιν ou Mōusēs edōken humin). “Not Moses gave you.” Blunt and pointed denial (aorist active indicative of διδωμι didōmi) that Moses was the giver of the bread from heaven (the manna). Moses was not superior to Christ on this score.But my Father (αλλ ο πατηρ μου all ho patēr mou). Not “our Father,” but same claim as in John 5:17. Which caused so much anger in Jerusalem. Gives (διδωσιν didōsin). Present active indicative, not aorist (εδωκεν edōken). Continual process. The true bread out of heaven (τον αρτον εκ του ουρανου τον αλητινον ton arton ek tou ouranou ton alēthinon). “The bread out of heaven” as the manna and more “the genuine bread” of which that was merely a type. On αλητινος alēthinos see John 1:9; John 4:23.
The bread of God (ο αρτος του τεου ho artos tou theou). All bread is of God (Matthew 6:11). The manna came down from heaven (Numbers 11:9) as does this bread (ο καταβαινων ho katabainōn). Refers to the bread (ο αρτος ho artos masculine). Bernard notes that this phrase (coming down) is used seven times in this discourse (John 6:33, John 6:38, John 6:41, John 6:42, John 6:50, John 6:51, John 6:58).Giveth life (ζωην διδους zōēn didous). Chrysostom observes that the manna gave nourishment (τροπη trophē), but not life (ζωη zōē). This is a most astounding statement to the crowd.
Lord (Κυριε Kurie). Used now instead of Rabbi (25) though how much the people meant by it is not clear.Evermore give us this bread (παντοτε δος ημιν τον αρτον τουτον pantote dos hēmin ton arton touton). Second aorist active imperative second singular like δος dos in Matthew 6:11 (urgent petition). What kind of bread do they mean? The Jewish commentaries and Philo speak of the manna as typifying heavenly bread for the soul. Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:3 seems to refer to the manna as “spiritual food.” Like the woman at the well (John 4:15) they long “always” to have “this bread,” a perpetual supply. It is probably to this crowd as the water in John 4:15 was to the woman.
I am the bread of life (Εγω ειμι ο αρτος της ζωης Egō eimi ho artos tēs zōēs). This sublime sentence was startling in the extreme to the crowd. Philo does compare the manna to the τειος λογος theios logos in an allegorical sense, but this language is far removed from Philo‘s vagueness. In the Synoptics (Mark 14:22; Matthew 26:26; Luke 22:19) Jesus uses bread (αρτος artos) as the symbol of his body in the Lord‘s Supper, but here Jesus offers himself in place of the loaves and fishes which they had come to seek (John 6:24, John 6:26). He is the bread of life in two senses: it has life in itself, the living bread (John 6:51), and it gives life to others like the water of life, the tree of life. John often has Jesus saying “I am” (εγω ειμι egō eimi). As also in John 6:41, John 6:48, John 6:51; John 8:12; John 10:7, John 10:9, John 10:11, John 10:14; John 11:25; John 14:6; John 15:1, John 15:5.He that cometh to me (ο ερχομενος προς εμε ho erchomenos pros eme). The first act of the soul in approaching Jesus. See also John 6:37. Shall not hunger (ου μη πεινασηι ou mē peinasēi). Strong double negative ου με ou me with first aorist (ingressive) active subjunctive, “shall not become hungry.” He that believeth on me (ο πιστευων εις εμε ho pisteuōn eis eme). The continuous relation of trust after coming like πιστευητε pisteuēte (present tense) in John 6:29. See both verbs used together also in John 7:37. Shall never thirst (ου μη διπσησει πωποτε ou mē dipsēsei pōpote). So the old MSS. the future active indicative instead of the aorist subjunctive as above, an even stronger form of negation with πωποτε pōpote (John 1:18) added.
That ye have seen me (οτι και εωρακατε με hoti kai heōrakate me). It is not certain that με me is genuine. If not, Jesus may refer to John 6:26. If genuine, some other saying is referred to that we do not have. Note και kai (also or even).And yet believe not (και ου πιστευετε kai ou pisteuete). Use of και kai = and yet.
All that (παν ο pān ho). Collective use of the neuter singular, classic idiom, seen also in John 6:39; John 17:2, John 17:24; 1 John 5:4. Perhaps the notion of unity like εν hen in John 17:21 underlies this use of παν ο pān hoGiveth me (διδωσιν μοι didōsin moi). For the idea that the disciples are given to the Son see also John 6:39, John 6:65; John 10:29; John 17:2, John 17:6, John 17:9, John 17:12, John 17:24; John 18:9. I will in no wise cast out (ου μη εκβαλω εχω ou mē ekbalō exō). Strong double negation as in John 6:35 with second aorist active subjunctive of βαλλω ballō Definite promise of Jesus to welcome the one who comes.
I am come down (καταβεβηκα katabebēka). Perfect active indicative of καταβαινω katabainō See note on John 6:33 for frequent use of this phrase by Jesus. Here απο apo is correct rather than εκ ek with του ουρανου tou ouranouNot to do (ουχ ινα ποιω ouch hina poiō). “Not that I keep on doing” (final clause with ινα hina and present active subjunctive of ποιεω poieō). But the will (αλλα το τελημα alla to thelēma). Supply ινα ποιω hina poiō after αλλα alla “but that I keep on doing.” This is the fulness of joy for Jesus, to do his Father‘s will (John 4:34; John 5:30).
That of all that which (ινα παν ο hina pān ho). Literally, “That all which” (see John 6:37 for παν ο pan ho), but there is a sharp anacoluthon with παν pān left as nominativus pendens.I should lose nothing (μη απολεσω εχ αυτου mē apolesō ex autou). Construed with ινα hina “that I shall not lose anything of it.” Απολεσω Apolesō from απολλυμι apollumi can be either future active indicative or first aorist active subjunctive as is true also of αναστησω anastēsō (from ανιστημι anistēmi), “I shall raise up.” At the last day (τηι εσχατηι εμεραι tēi eschatēi hemerāi). Locative case without εν en Only in John, but four times here (John 6:39, John 6:40, John 6:44, John 6:54) “with the majesty of a solemn refrain.” In John 7:37 it is the last day of the feast of tabernacles, but in John 11:24; John 12:48 of the day of judgment as here. Christ is the Agent of the general resurrection in John 5:28 as in 1 Corinthians 15:22 while here only the resurrection of the righteous is mentioned.
Should have eternal life (εχηι ζωην αιωνιον echēi zōēn aiōnion). Present active subjunctive with ινα hina “that he may keep on having eternal life” as in John 3:15, John 3:36.Beholdeth (τεωρων theōrōn). With the eye of faith as in John 12:45. And I will raise him up (και αναστησω kai anastēsō). Future active indicative (volitive future, promise) as in John 6:54.
Murmured (εγογγυζον egogguzon). Imperfect active of the onomatopoetic verb γογγυζω gogguzō late verb in lxx (murmuring against Moses), papyri (vernacular), like the cooing of doves or the buzzing of bees. These Galilean Jews are puzzled over what Jesus had said (John 6:33, John 6:35) about his being the bread of God come down from heaven.
How doth he now say? (Πως νυν λεγει Pōs nun legei). They knew Jesus as the son of Joseph and Mary. They cannot comprehend his claim to be from heaven. This lofty claim puzzles sceptics today.
Murmur not (μη γογγυζετε mē gogguzete). Prohibition with μη mē and the present active imperative, “stop murmuring” (the very word of John 6:41). There was a rising tide of protest.
Except the Father draw him (εαν μη ελκυσηι αυτον ean mē helkusēi auton). Negative condition of third class with εαν μη ean mē and first aorist active subjunctive of ελκυω helkuō older form ελκω helkō to drag like a net (John 21:6), or sword (John 18:10), or men (Acts 16:19), to draw by moral power (John 12:32), as in Jeremiah 31:3. Συρω Surō the other word to drag (Acts 8:3; Acts 14:19) is not used of Christ‘s drawing power. The same point is repeated in John 6:65. The approach of the soul to God is initiated by God, the other side of John 6:37. See Romans 8:7 for the same doctrine and use of ουδε δυναται oude dunatai like ουδεις δυναται oudeis dunatai here.
Taught of God (διδακτοι τεου didaktoi theou). A free quotation from Isaiah 54:13 with this phrase in the lxx. There is here the ablative case τεου theou with the passive verbal adjective διδακτοι didaktoi (Robertson, Grammar, p. 516). In 1 Thessalonians 4:9 we have the compound verbal τεοδιδακτοι theodidaktoi The same use of διδακτος didaktos with the ablative occurs in 1 Corinthians 2:13.And hath learned (και ματων kai mathōn). Second aorist active participle of μαντανω manthanō It is not enough to hear God‘s voice. He must heed it and learn it and do it. This is a voluntary response. This one inevitably comes to Christ.
This one has seen the Father (ουτος εωρακεν τον πατερα houtos heōraken ton patera). Perfect active indicative of οραω horaō With the eyes no one has seen God (John 1:18) save the Son who is “from God” in origin (John 1:1, John 1:14; John 7:29; John 16:27; John 17:8). The only way for others to see God is to see Christ (John 14:9).
He that believeth (ο πιστευων ho pisteuōn). This is the way to see God in Christ.
I am the bread of life (εγω ειμι ο αρτος της ζωης egō eimi ho artos tēs zōēs). Jesus repeats the astounding words of John 6:35 after fuller explanation. The believer in Christ has eternal life because he gives himself to him.
And they died (και απετανον kai apethanon). Physical death. The manna did not prevent death. But this new manna will prevent spiritual death.
That a man may eat thereof, and not die (ινα τις εχ αυτου παγηι και μη αποτανηι hina tis ex autou phagēi kai mē apothanēi). Purpose clause with ινα hina and the second aorist active subjunctive of εστιω esthiō and αποτνησκω apothnēskō The wonder and the glory of it all, but quite beyond the insight of this motley crowd.
The living bread (ο αρτος ο ζων ho artos ho zōn). “The bread the living.” Repetition of the claim in John 6:35, John 6:41, John 6:48, but with a slight change from ζωης zōēs to ζων zōn (present active participle of ζαω zaō). It is alive and can give life. See John 4:10 for living water. In Revelation 1:17 Jesus calls himself the Living One (ο ζων ho zōn).For ever (εις τον αιωνα eis ton aiōna). Eternally like αιωνιον aiōnion with ζωην zōēn in John 6:47. I shall give (εγω δωσω egō dōsō). Emphasis on εγω egō (I). Superior so to Moses. Is my flesh (η σαρχ μου εστιν hē sarx mou estin). See note on John 1:14 for σαρχ sarx the Incarnation. This new idea creates far more difficulty to the hearers who cannot grasp Christ‘s idea of self-sacrifice. For the life of the world (υπερ της του κοσμου ζωης huper tēs tou kosmou zōēs). Over, in behalf of, υπερ huper means, and in some connexions instead of as in John 11:50. See John 1:30 for the Baptist‘s picture of Christ as the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. See also John 3:17; John 4:42; 1 John 3:16; Matthew 20:28; Galatians 3:13; 2 Corinthians 5:14.; Romans 5:8. Jesus has here presented to this Galilean multitude the central fact of his atoning death for the spiritual life of the world.
Strove (εμαχοντο emachonto). Imperfect (inchoative) middle of μαχομαι machomai to fight in armed combat (Acts 7:26), then to wage a war of words as here and 2 Timothy 2:24. They were already murmuring (John 6:41), now they began bitter strife with one another over the last words of Jesus (John 6:43-51), some probably seeing a spiritual meaning in them. There was division of opinion about Jesus in Jerusalem also later (John 7:12, John 7:40; John 9:16; John 10:19).How can? (Πως δυναται Pōs dunatai). The very idiom used by Nicodemus in John 3:4, John 3:9. Here scornful disbelief. This man (ουτος houtos). Contemptuous use pictured in John 6:42. His flesh to eat (την σαρκα αυτου παγειν tēn sarka autou phagein). As if we were cannibals! Some MSS. do not have αυτου autou but the meaning is clear. The mystical appropriation of Christ by the believer (Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 3:17) they could not comprehend, though some apparently were against this literal interpretation of “flesh” (σαρχ sarx).
Except ye eat (εαν μη παγητε ean mē phagēte). Negative condition of third class with second aorist active subjunctive of εστιω esthiō Jesus repeats the statement in John 6:50, John 6:51. Note change of μου mou (my) in John 6:51 to του υιου του αντρωπου tou huiou tou anthrōpou with same idea.And drink his blood (και πιητε αυτου το αιμα kai piēte autou to haima). Same condition with second aorist active subjunctive of πινω pinō This addition makes the demand of Jesus seem to these Jews more impossible than before if taken in a baldly literal sense. The only possible meaning is the spiritual appropriation of Jesus Christ by faith (John 6:47), for “ye have not life in yourselves” (ουκ εχετε ζωην εν εαυτοις ouk echete zōēn en heautois). Life is found only in Christ.
He that eateth (ο τρωγων ho trōgōn). Present active participle for continual or habitual eating like πιστευετε pisteuete in John 6:29. The verb τρωγω trōgō is an old one for eating fruit or vegetables and the feeding of animals. In the N.T. it occurs only in John 6:54, John 6:56, John 6:58; John 13:18; Matthew 24:38. Elsewhere in the Gospels always εστιω esthiō or επαγον ephagon (defective verb with εστιω esthiō). No distinction is made here between επαγον ephagon (John 6:48, John 6:50, John 6:52, John 6:53, John 6:58) and τρωγω trōgō (John 6:54, John 6:56, John 6:57, John 6:58). Some men understand Jesus here to be speaking of the Lord‘s Supper by prophetic forecast or rather they think that John has put into the mouth of Jesus the sacramental conception of Christianity by making participation in the bread and wine the means of securing eternal life. To me that is a violent misinterpretation of the Gospel and an utter misrepresentation of Christ. It is a grossly literal interpretation of the mystical symbolism of the language of Jesus which these Jews also misunderstood. Christ uses bold imagery to picture spiritual appropriation of himself who is to give his life-blood for the life of the world (John 6:51). It would have been hopeless confusion for these Jews if Jesus had used the symbolism of the Lord‘s Supper. It would be real dishonesty for John to use this discourse as a propaganda for sacramentalism. The language of Jesus can only have a spiritual meaning as he unfolds himself as the true manna.
Meat indeed (αλητης βρωσις alēthēs brōsis). So the best MSS., “true food.” See note on John 4:32 for βρωσις brōsis as equal to βρωμα brōma (a thing eaten).Drink indeed (αλητης ποσις alēthēs posis). Correct text, “true drink.” For ποσις posis see Romans 14:17; Colossians 2:16 (only N.T. examples).
Abideth in me and I in him (εν εμοι μενει καγω εν αυτωι en emoi menei kagō en autōi). Added to the phrase in John 6:54 in the place of εχει ζωην αιωνιον echei zōēn aiōnion (has eternal life). The verb μενω menō (to abide) expresses continual mystical fellowship between Christ and the believer as in John 15:4-7; 1 John 2:6, 1 John 2:27, 1 John 2:28; 1 John 3:6, 1 John 3:24; 1 John 4:12, 1 John 4:16. There is, of course, no reference to the Lord‘s Supper (Eucharist), but simply to mystical fellowship with Christ.
The living Father (ο ζων πατηρ ho zōn patēr). Nowhere else in the N.T., but see John 5:26 and “the living God” (Matthew 16:16; 2 Corinthians 6:16). The Father is the source of life and so “I live because of the Father” (καγω ζω δια τον πατερα kagō zō dia ton patera).He that eateth me (ο τρωγων με ho trōgōn me). Still bolder putting of the mystical appropriation of Christ (John 6:51, John 6:53, John 6:54, John 6:56). Because of me (δι εμε di' eme). The same idea appears in John 14:19: “Because I live ye shall live also.” See John 11:25. Jesus Christ is our ground of hope and guarantee of immortality. Life is in Christ. There is no real difficulty in this use of δια dia with the accusative as with δια τον πατερα dia ton patera just before. It occurs also in John 15:3. As the Father is the fount of life to Christ, so Christ is the fount of life to us. See 1 John 4:9 where δια dia is used with the genitive (δι αυτου di' autou) as the intermediate agent, not the ground or reason as here.
This is the bread (ουτος εστιν ο αρτος houtos estin ho artos). Summary and final explanation of the true manna (from John 6:32 on) as being Jesus Christ himself.
In the synagogue (εν συναγωγηι en sunagōgēi). Definite like our in church, though article absent. Only use of the word in John except John 18:20. “Among the ruins at Tell Hum, the probable site of Capernaum, have been found among the remains of a synagogue a block of stone perhaps the lintel, carved with a pot of manna, and with a pattern of vine leaves and clusters of grapes” (Vincent).
A hard saying (σκληρος sklēros). “This saying is a hard one.” Old adjective, rough, harsh, dried hard (from σκελλω skellō to dry), probably the last saying of Jesus that he was the bread of life come down from heaven and they were to eat him. It is to be hoped that none of the twelve joined the many disciples in this complaint.Hear it (αυτου ακουειν autou akouein). Or “hear him,” hear with acceptation. For ακουω akouō with the genitive see John 10:3, John 10:16, John 10:27.
Knowing in himself (ειδως εν εαυτωι eidōs en heautōi). Second perfect active participle of οιδα oida See John 2:25 for this supernatural insight into men‘s minds.Murmured (γογγυζουσιν gogguzousin). Present active indicative retained in indirect discourse. See John 6:41 for γογγυζω gogguzō At this (περι τουτου peri toutou). “Concerning this word.” Cause to stumble (σκανδαλιζει skandalizei). Common Synoptic verb from σκανδαλον skandalon for which see Matthew 5:29. In John again only in John 16:1.
What then if ye should behold (εαν ουν τεωρητε ean oun theōrēte). No “what” in the Greek. Condition of third class with εαν ean and present active subjunctive, “if ye then behold.”Ascending (αναβαινοντα anabainonta). Present active participle picturing the process. Where he was before (οπου ην το προτερον hopou ēn to proteron). Neuter articular adjective as adverb (accusative of general reference, at the former time as in John 9:8; Galatians 3:13). Clear statement of Christ‘s pre-existence in his own words as in John 3:13; John 17:5 (cf. 1:1-18).
That quickeneth (το ζωοποιουν to zōopoioun). Articular present active participle of ζωοποιεω zōopoieō for which see John 5:21. For the contrast between πνευμα pneuma (spirit) and σαρχ sarx (flesh) see note on John 3:6.The words (τα ρηματα ta rēmata). Those in this discourse (I have just spoken, λελαληκα lelalēka), for they are the words of God (John 3:34; John 8:47; John 17:8). No wonder they “are spirit and are life” (πνευμα εστιν και ζωη εστιν pneuma estin kai zōē estin). The breath of God and the life of God is in these words of Jesus. Never man spoke like Jesus (John 7:46). There is life in his words today.
That believe not (οι ου πιστευουσιν hoi ou pisteuousin). Failure to believe kills the life in the words of Jesus.Knew from the beginning (ηιδει εχ αρχης ēidei ex archēs). In the N.T. we have εχ αρχης ex archēs only here and John 16:4, but απ αρχης ap' archēs in apparently the same sense as here in John 15:27; 1 John 2:7, 1 John 2:24; 1 John 3:11 and see Luke 1:2; 1 John 1:1. From the first Jesus distinguished between real trust in him and mere lip service (John 2:24; John 8:31), two senses of πιστευω pisteuō Were (εισιν eisin). Present active indicative retained in indirect discourse. And who it was that should betray him (και τις εστιν ο παραδωσων kai tis estin ho paradōsōn). Same use of εστιν estin and note article and future active participle of παραδιδωμι paradidōmi to hand over, to betray. John does not say here that Jesus knew that Judas would betray him when he chose him as one of the twelve, least of all that he chose him for that purpose. What he does say is that Jesus was not taken by surprise and soon saw signs of treason in Judas. The same verb is used of John‘s arrest in Matthew 4:12. Once Judas is termed traitor (προδοτης prodotēs) in Luke 6:16. Judas had gifts and was given his opportunity. He did not have to betray Jesus.
Except it be given him of the Father (εαν μη ηι δεδομενον αυτωι εκ του πατρος ean mē ēi dedomenon autōi ek tou patros). Condition of third class with εαν μη ean mē and periphrastic perfect passive subjunctive of διδωμι didōmi Precisely the same point as in John 6:44 where we have ελκυσηι helkusēi instead of ηι δεδομενον ēi dedomenon The impulse to faith comes from God. Jesus does not expect all to believe and seems to imply that Judas did not truly believe.
Upon this (εκ τουτου ek toutou). Same idiom in John 19:12. “Out of this saying or circumstance.” Jesus drew the line of cleavage between the true and the false believers.Went back (απηλτον εις τα οπισω apēlthon eis ta opisō). Aorist (ingressive) active indicative of απερχομαι aperchomai with εις τα οπισω eis ta opisō “to the rear” (the behind things) as in John 18:6. Walked no more with him (ουκετι μετ αυτου περιεπατουν ouketi met' autou periepatoun). Imperfect active of περιπατεω peripateō The crisis had come. These half-hearted seekers after the loaves and fishes and political power turned abruptly from Jesus, walked out of the synagogue with a deal of bluster and were walking with Jesus no more. Jesus had completely disillusioned these hungry camp-followers who did not care for spiritual manna that consisted in intimate appropriation of the life of Jesus as God‘s Son.
Would ye also go away? (Μη και υμεις τελετε υπαγειν Mē kai humeis thelete hupagein). Jesus puts it with the negative answer (μη mē) expected. See John 21:5 where Jesus also uses μη mē in a question. Judas must have shown some sympathy with the disappointed and disappearing crowds. But he kept still. There was possibly restlessness on the part of the other apostles.
Lord, to whom shall we go? (Κυριε προς τινα απελευσομετα Kurie class="translit"> pros tina apeleusometha). Peter is the spokesman as usual and his words mean that, if such a thought as desertion crossed their minds when the crowd left, they dismissed it instantly. They had made their choice. They accepted these very words of Jesus that had caused the defection as “the words of eternal life.”
We have believed (ημεις πεπιστευκαμεν hēmeis pepisteukamen). Perfect active indicative of πιστευω pisteuō “We have come to believe and still believe” (John 6:29).And know (και εγνωκαμεν kai egnōkamen). Same tense of γινωσκω ginōskō “We have come to know and still know.” Thou art the Holy One of God (συ ει ο αγιος του τεου su ei ho hagios tou theou). Bernard follows those who believe that this is John‘s report of the same confession given by the Synoptics (Mark 8:27.; Matthew 16:13-20; Luke 9:18.), an utterly unjustifiable conclusion. The details are wholly different. Here in the synagogue in Capernaum, there on Mt. Hermon near Caesarea Philippi. What earthly difficulty is there in supposing that Peter could make a noble confession twice? That is to my mind a wooden conception of the apostles in their growing apprehension of Christ.
And one of you is a devil (και εχ υμων εις διαβολος εστιν kai ex humōn heis diabolos estin). Jesus does not say that Judas was a devil when he chose him, but that he is one now. In John 13:2, John 13:27 John speaks of the devil entering Judas. How soon the plan to betray Jesus first entered the heart of Judas we do not know (John 12:4). One wonders if the words of Jesus here did not cut Judas to the quick.
Of Simon Iscariot (Σιμωνος Ισκαριωτου Simōnos Iskariōtou). So his father was named Iscariot also, a man of Kerioth (possibly in Judah, Joshua 15:25, possibly in Moab, Jeremiah 48:24), not in Galilee. Judas was the only one of the twelve not a Galilean. The rest of the verse is like John 12:4.One of the twelve (εις εκ των δωδεκα heis ek tōn dōdeka). The eternal horror of the thing.
The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright © Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on John 6". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/
Second Sunday after Epiphany