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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
John 18

 

 

Other Authors
Verses 1-11

Jesus' Betrayal and Arrest ( Matthew 26:36-56, Mark 14:32-52, Luke 22:39-53) - John 18:1-13 gives us the account of Jesus' betrayal and arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. John's account of Jesus' betrayal and arrest leaves out Jesus' prayer in the Garden, while the Synoptic Gospels all record this prayer. Instead, John places emphasis upon the divine nature of Jesus. For example, John comments that Jesus "knew all things ( John 18:4). When Jesus spoke to the multitude, they all fell backwards ( John 18:6). Neither did John refer to the healing of Malchus' ear, but recorded His words to Peter regarding His Heavenly Father ( John 18:11).

John 18:1Comments- The Synoptic Gospels record Jesus' prayers in the Garden of Gethsemane while John leaves this touching story out of his Gospel.

John 18:1-2Comments- The Garden of Gethsemane- After the Lord's Supper Jesus led His disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane. We can imagine that this was the most beautiful place in the area to retreat and mediate, just as many cities build a park for its residences. John 18:2 tells us that Jesus often visited this garden. God loves beauty and He loves the beauty of His creation. We find in this beauty a sense of peace and tranquility of the soul. It was this place that Jesus felt a sense of God's presence in His creation.

John 18:4Comments- Jesus knew who they were looking for. Song of Solomon , why did He ask this question? He asked it out of love for His fellow disciples and men alike, especially for his disciples. There was no violence as a result. It prevented violence (note verse 8) and leaves the disciples to depart, so as not to lose any disciples through death (note verse 9).

John 18:9Comments - The Author's Commentary - Scholars popularly believe that John 3:16-21 contains a commentary on the discourse between Jesus and Nicodemus recorded in John 3:1-20. The author pauses from his narrative to give his readers the reason for God's offer of eternal life, which comes from His love for mankind. John the apostle pauses a number of times in his Gospel to make such comments. For example, we see a similar commentary in John 3:31-36 as the author explains the words of John the Baptist recorded in John 3:27-30. Also, in John 18:9 the author makes comments in John 18:9; John 18:32 and John 19:35-37 of fulfilled prophecy in the midst of the narrative story of Jesus' arrest, trial, and crufixion.

John 18:10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest"s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant"s name was Malchus.

John 18:10Comments - All four Evangelists records the event of Peter drawing his sword in the Garden and cutting off the ear of Malchus, the servant of the high priest ( Matthew 26:51, Mark 14:47, Luke 22:49-51, John 18:10). Only John records the man's name as Malchus and that it was Peter who drew the sword, and only Luke records the fact that Jesus healed the man's ear. Peter was the most zealous of the twelve disciples. He had taken Jesus literally in Luke 22:36 when Jesus told them to sell their garments and purchase a sword.

John 18:10, "Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest"s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant"s name was Malchus."

Matthew 26:51, "And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest"s, and smote off his ear."

Mark 14:47, "And one of them that stood by drew a sword, and smote a servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear."

Luke 22:50-51, "And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him."

John 18:10, "Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest"s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant"s name was Malchus."

Luke 22:36, "Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one."


Verses 11-16

Jesus' Trials - In John 18:1 to John 19:16 a we have the account of Jesus standing before the High Priests ( John 18:12-27) and before Pilate ( John 18:28 to John 19:16 a). Peter denies Jesus three times while He stood before Annas and Caiaphas.

Outline - Here is a proposed outline:

1. Jesus before the High Priest & Peter's Denials — John 18:12-27

2. Jesus before Pilate — John 18:28 to John 19:16 a

John 18:12-27 — Jesus before the High Priest and Peter's three denials ( Matthew 26:57-75, Mark 14:53-72, Luke 22:54-71) - John 18:12-27 tells us of Jesus' first trial before the high priest with Peter's three denials woven within this event.

John 18:15"And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple" - Comments- This disciple who followed Jesus stayed with Him until the end. No other disciple went that far. Jesus" followers went from the multitudes, to the 70, to the 12, to 3in garden, to 1, with Simon Peter following.

Scholars believe that this other disciple was John , the author of this Gospel.

John 18:18Comments- Jesus will use a fire of coals by the sea of Tiberias to minister to Peter and help him reconcile his sin with God. Such a setting will automatically bring Peter back to the fire of coals the night he denied Jesus. Many of us have been hurt emotionally, and we find certain places difficult to return and visit because it stirs up painful memories. By the sea of Tiberias Jesus takes Peter back to the fire of coals in order to bring him through a healing process.

John 21:8-9, "And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes. As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread."

John 18:28/ John 19:16 a — Jesus before Pilate ( Matthew 27:1-2; Matthew 27:11-31, Mark 15:1-20, Luke 23:1-5; Luke 23:13-25) - John 18:28 to John 19:16 a tells us the story of Jesus' second trial before Pontus Pilate at which time He was scourged. Matthew's Gospel adds the story of Judas Iscariot hanging himself ( Matthew 27:3-10) and Luke adds the account of Jesus before Herod ( Luke 23:6-12).

John 18:28 Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the passover.

John 18:28 — Word Study on "the hall of judgment" - The Greek word "praetorium" ( πραιτώ ριον) (G 4232) is translated "judgment hall" in the KJV in Acts 23:35. The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 8 times in the New Testament, being translated in the KJV as, "judgment hall 4, hall of judgment 1, common hall 1, praetorium 1, palace 1." The word "praetorium" is of Latin origin, and according to Lightfoot it properly means, "the general's tent," or "the head-quarters in a camp." 254] BDAG says it originally referred to "the praetor's tent in camp, with its surroundings," but that this word was later used to refer to the residence of Roman governor, who presided over a province. The ISBE says that the Romans customarily seized the existing palaces of local kings or princes and made it into their official "praetorium." According to BDAG, the "praetorium" mentioned in the Gospels where Jesus was tried refers either to Herod's palace located in the western part of the city of Jerusalem, or "to the fortress Antonia" located "northwest of the temple area." (see Matthew 27:27, Mark 15:16, John 18:28 a,b, 33; John 19:9) In Acts 23:35 Paul's trial would have taken place in Herod's palace in Caesarea, which was used as the residence of the Roman governor. Thus, these palaces were used to hear disputes by the governor and pass judgment. Regarding the use of this word in Philippians 1:13, since Paul's imprisonment is generally believed to be in Rome, Lightfoot supports the popular view that the word "praetorium" refers more specifically to "the imperial guard," rather than to a building. Lightfoot believes that "in Rome itself a ‘praetorium' would not have been tolerated." He thus translates this word as "the imperial guards." 255]

254] J. B. Lightfoot, Paul's Epistle to the Philippians (London: MacMillan and Co, c 1868, 1903), 99.

255] J. B. Lightfoot, Paul's Epistle to the Philippians (London: MacMillan and Co, c 1868, 1903), 101-102.

John 18:32"signifying what death He should die" - Comments- That Isaiah , Jesus told his disciples that he would be delivered to the Gentiles in order to suffer death by the Romans through crucifixion, and not by the Jews through stoning.

Matthew 20:18-19, "Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again."

Matthew 26:1-2, "And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said unto his disciples, Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified."

John 3:14, "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:"

John 8:28, "Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am Hebrews , and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things."

John 12:32-33, "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. This he said, signifying what death he should die."

John 18:32Comments - The Author's Commentary - Scholars popularly believe that John 3:16-21 contains a commentary on the discourse between Jesus and Nicodemus recorded in John 3:1-20. The author pauses from his narrative to give his readers the reason for God's offer of eternal life, which comes from His love for mankind. John the apostle pauses a number of times in his Gospel to make such comments. For example, we see a similar commentary in John 3:31-36 as the author explains the words of John the Baptist recorded in John 3:27-30. Also, in John 18:9 the author makes comments in John 18:9; John 18:32 and John 19:35-37 of fulfilled prophecy in the midst of the narrative story of Jesus' arrest, trial, and crufixion.

John 18:36Comments - Jesus was arrested by the Jewish by the Jewish leaders on the basis that He was instigating a rebellion against Rome, as other Jewish rebels had done at this time in Jewish history under oppressive Roman rule. Thus, Jesus tells Pilate that if He were a leader of a band of rebels, then He would have fought against His arrest.

John 18:37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

John 19:1Comments- Pilate scourged Jesus in hopes of releasing Him. After the scourging, the Jews still insisted on His crucifixion.

Luke 23:16, "I will therefore chastise him, and release him."

Luke 23:20, "Pilate therefore, willing to release Jesus, spake again to them."

John 19:5Comments - Pilate may have looked at the Lord Jesus Christ in pity after such a bloody scourging and said, "Behold the Prayer of Manasseh ," meaning, "How can you crucify this man after such a scourging. Look at His condition. Is not this enough punishment?"

John 19:11 — "therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin" - Comments- Since God has given leaders authority to make judgment, the sin lies with those who deliver someone for judgment.

John 19:13Comments- Everett F. Harrison says the Greek word λιθό στρωτος means, "paved with stones," while the Aramaic equivalent is Gabbatha ( γαββαθα), which means, "ridge, high ground." This courtyard would have been destroyed or buried in A.D 66-70 during the siege of Jerusalem. He says although many scholars had speculated for years that Pilate's "praetorium" was at the Herodian palace to the west of the temple area, no pavement had ever been excavated there. He says the discovery of "a large pavement at the Castle of Antonia located at the northwest corner of the temple precincts" justifies the Aramiac name Gabbatha, since this is an accurate description of this pavement "with respect to the surrounding terrain." 256]

256] Everett F. Harrison, Introduction to the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, c 1964, 1971), 228-29.

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on John 18:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/john-18.html. 2013.

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Monday, May 20th, 2019
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