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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

John 14:20

In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Nave's Topical Bible - Fellowship;   God;   Jesus Continued;   Righteous;   Scofield Reference Index - Holy Spirit;   Thompson Chain Reference - Future, the;   Heaven;   Heavenly;   Holy Spirit;   Home;   Indwelling Christ;   Spirit;   Temple, Spiritual;   The Topic Concordance - Jesus Christ;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Union with Christ;  
Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Comfort;   Counselor;   Faith;   Feasts and Festivals of Israel;   Follow, Follower;   Sanctification;   Union with Christ;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Holy Ghost;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Children (Sons) of God;   God;   Holy Spirit;   John, Theology of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Abiding;   Brotherhood (2);   Comfort (2);   Coming Again;   Communion (2);   Day;   Day (That);   Death of Christ;   Dependence;   Grace;   Holiness;   Hunger;   Ideas (Leading);   Impotence;   Kenosis;   Love (2);   Peace (2);   Trinity (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Day;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Concubine;   Fruit;   Holy ghost;   Pentecost;   Samuel;  
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Authority in Religion;   Ethics of Jesus;   Johannine Theology, the;   Name;   Trinity;  
Every Day Light - Devotion for May 23;  
Unselected Authors

Adam Clarke Commentary

Verse John 14:20. That I am in my Father — After my resurrection, ye shall be more fully convinced of this important truth, that I and the Father are ONE; for I will live in you by the energy of my Spirit, and ye shall live in me by faith, love, and obedience.

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These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on John 14:20". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". 1832.

Bridgeway Bible Commentary

144. Promise of the Holy Spirit (John 14:15-31)

In assuring the disciples of the blessings that would follow his return to the Father (see John 14:12), Jesus had not specifically mentioned the Holy Spirit. Now he explained. When he returned to the Father, he would send the Holy Spirit as the Counsellor, or Helper, to guide, instruct and strengthen them. Those who did not believe in Jesus would not be able to understand how this Helper worked, because their understanding was limited to the things of the world in which they lived (John 14:15-17). Soon Jesus would leave the world, but he would not desert his disciples. Although people in general would see him no longer, his disciples would, in a sense, continue to see him. They would see and know him spiritually, because he would live within them. He would love them, and in return they would love him (John 14:18-21).

Judas Thaddaeus (not Judas the betrayer), still thinking of Jesus’ physical body, could not understand how the disciples would see him but others would not. Jesus replied that not only the Son, but the Father also, would live with them, provided they gave proof of their love for him by following his teachings. The Holy Spirit would help them recall those teachings (John 14:22-26).

Jesus saw that his disciples were confused and unsettled, and promised them his peace. By this he did not mean a life free from trouble, but an inward calm such as he had. Though outwardly afflicted, inwardly he had peace. The disciples should not have been troubled about Jesus’ coming death, but glad that by that death he was bringing to completion the work his Father had given him to do (John 14:27-29). Though sinless and in no way under Satan’s power, Jesus would allow Satan’s servants to betray and kill him, so that through his death he might fulfil his Father’s will and save sinners (John 14:30-31).

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Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Brideway Bible Commentary". 2005.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

In that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.

Here is the whole prospectus of God's kingdom in embryo, making this verse rank with Genesis 3:15 as a statement of the whole plan of salvation. Here is the achievement of God's righteousness, the secret of justification, and the basis of the redeemed's avoidance of judgment - the whole works; it's all here!

Ye in me ... God's way of accounting men righteous is that of totally identifying them with Jesus Christ who is righteous. The righteousness God imputes to men is a genuine righteousness, a total and absolute perfection, achieved by Jesus Christ and made available to men "in him." Any so-called "righteousness" based upon anything else is spurious. Nothing that a sinner might either believe or do could make either his faith or his actions the grounds of his being accounted righteous in the sight of God. "All spiritual blessings are in Christ" (Ephesians 1:3). God therefore makes a sinner righteous by bringing him into Christ, identifying him with Christ and as Christ, thus enabling all the righteousness of the Holy One to be in fact the righteousness of the redeemed soul in Christ (Galatians 2:20). For full discussion of justification in Christ, see my Commentary on Romans, pp. 108-113.

No man can be saved as John Doe, Joe Bloke, or whoever he is. The only way any man can be saved is as Christ and in Christ. The identification of believers with Christ is revealed in this verse to be exactly the same as the identification of Christ with God. God is in Christ; Christ is in God; Christ is in Christians; and Christians are in Christ. The loss of personal identity for purposes of procuring justification was what Jesus referred to in "He that loseth his life for my sake shall find it" (Matthew 10:39).

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

At that day - In the time when my life shall be fully manifested to you, and you shall receive the assurance that I live. This refers to the time after his resurrection, and to the manifestations which in various ways he would make that he was alive.

That I am in my “Father ... - That we are most intimately and indissolubly united. See the notes at John 10:38.

Ye in me - That there is a union between us which can never be severed. See the notes at John 15:1-7.

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These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". 1870.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

20. At that day Some refer this to the day of Pentecost; but it rather denotes the uninterrupted course, as it were, of a single day, from the time when Christ exerted the power of his Spirit till the last resurrection. From that time they began to know, but it was a sort of feeble beginning, because the Spirit had not yet wrought so powerfully in them. For the object of these words is, to show that we cannot, by indolent speculation, know what is the sacred and mystical union between us and him, and again, between him and the Father; but that the only way of knowing it is, when he diffuses his life in us by the secret efficacy of the Spirit; and this is the trial of faith, which I lately mentioned.

As to the manner in which this passage was formerly abused by the Aryans, to prove that Christ is God only by participation and by grace, it is easy to refute their sophistry. For Christ does not speak merely of his eternal essence, but of that Divine power which was manifested in him. As the Father has laid up in the Son all fullness of blessings, so, on the other hand, the Son has conveyed himself entirely into us. He is said to be in us, because he plainly shows, by the efficacy of his Spirit, that he is the Author and the cause of our life.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". 1840-57.

Chuck Smith Bible Commentary

Chapter 14

Jesus said,

Let not your heart be troubled ( John 14:1 ):

Now, they were troubled because He had been saying these things. "I'm going to go away; where I go you cannot come." He's been talking about His death; He's been talking about His betrayal. He's been saying things that are very troubling to them. And yet, He said unto them, "Let not your heart be troubled." The cure for it is,

believe in God, and believe in me ( John 14:1 ).

"Ye believe in God..." and that is either a question or it's a statement. "Ye believe in God, believe also in me."

For in my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I'm going to prepare a place for you ( John 14:2 ).

The word mansions is abiding places. "In my Father's house are many abiding places. And I'm going to prepare a place for you."

If I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. Where I go you know, and the way you know ( John 14:3-4 ).

Now, for many years I heard this scripture interpreted as beautiful mansions that God has up in heaven for us. So, when we arrive in heaven, Peter will meet us at the gate and take us through the city of heaven, down Glory Lane, and there, in this beautiful forest of blossoming trees, stands one of these beautiful colonial-type mansions, with the verandas and the porches and the stream running pass and all, and the Lord says, "There you are, check in." But, as time has passed, I've come to believe that what Jesus is referring to is not some beautiful home, English Tudor or Southern Colonial, that He has built up in heaven for me. But I believe that He is referring to the new body that I'm going to receive when I move out of this old tent. And Paul the apostle in II Corinthians, chapter 5, says, "We know that when this earthly tent, the body in which we presently live, is dissolved, that we have a building of God that is not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. So then, we who are in these bodies do often groan, earnestly desiring to move out of them, not to be unembodied spirits, but that we might be clothed upon with the body which is from heaven."

Now, God has a whole new body for us, far superior to the present body in which we live. The present body in which we live is compared to a tent; a temporary place to dwell, contrasted with the building of God, not made with hands, that is eternal in the heavens. The present body in which we live has marvelous features, but yet it also has features that aren't so marvelous. The present body in which we live has an aging process that takes its toll, so that we grow old. And as we grow old, the capacities of the body diminish. And we are not always able to do all of the things that we want to do or would like to do. And sometimes we foolishly get out and try to do some of those things that we used to do, and find that age has taken its toll upon the body. The body deteriorates; the body is subject to sickness, to disease, to weaknesses.

Now, God has a new body for me. It's far superior to this body, in that it will not need sleep for recuperation. Thus, if I had a mansion in heaven, I wouldn't need a bedroom in it. Because the body won't need that period of recuperating its strength. You probably wouldn't need a kitchen, because the body will probably be nourished by other types of foods that the body will use I probably won't need a bathroom.

So, when the Lord talks about in heaven, He's going to prepare a place for us, I believe that He's talking about that new body that He's gone to prepare for us. "The building of God not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." And there in the kingdom of God, in that perfected state, we will dwell, live and dwell with Him forever.

Now, His promise is, "If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there you may be also." So, the Lord kept His promise to His disciples and He came and received each of them to Himself, and they are dwelling with Him now in His kingdom. He kept His word. And He'll keep His word to us. One of these days He's coming to receive us unto Himself, that where He is, there we may be also. And there's come that time in life when leaving this body to be with Him is far preferable to remaining in this body, when the Lord comes to receive us to Himself. "Now where I go you know, and the way you know."

Thomas said unto him, Lord, we don't know where you're going; and how can we know the way? Jesus said unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life: no man comes to the Father, but by me ( John 14:5-6 ).

Now, here again is one of those radical statements of Jesus Christ. Last week He said, "I am the resurrection and the life; he that believes on Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. He who lives and believes in Me shall never die" ( John 11:25-26 ). Radical! Now He's making another radical statement. "I am the way, the truth, and the life, and no man comes to the Father but by Me." Here, Jesus is declaring that He is the only way by which a man may come the Father.

There are those people who declare, "All roads lead to God. All religions lead men to God. All roads go to God." Not so! There's only one road that leads to the Father and that's Jesus Christ. "I am the way, the truth and the life. No man comes to the Father..." Now, people may try to find other gods and serve other gods, but they don't serve the true and the living God, except through Jesus Christ. "No man," He said, "comes to the Father but by Me."

A couple of Mormon boys came up to the door the other day. And I said, "The problem is you talk like I talk, but you don't believe as I believe. Your words are like mine. You say that you believe in salvation through faith in Jesus Christ in His death for you." "Yes," they said, "that is true. We believe that Jesus died for our sins and we're saved by our believing in Him." I said, "Yes, but the Jesus you believe in is a different Jesus than I believe in. For the Jesus that I believe in is not the brother of Lucifer. And you believe that Jesus is the brother of Lucifer, don't you?" And they said, "Yes, we believe He's the brother of Lucifer." I said, "Then, he's a different Jesus than the one that I believe in. Because the Jesus I believe in is not the brother of Lucifer, but the only begotten Son of God. And if He were the brother of Lucifer, Lucifer being a created being, would make Him a created being and would put Him on a whole different level than that level in which God's Word declares that He is, 'who was in the beginning with God, and thought it not robbery to be equal with God.' So, you say you believe in Jesus, but it's a different Jesus. You're preaching a different Jesus than what the Bible reveals. And as far as that goes, you're also preaching a different god. For the God that I believe in is not an ascended man, nor do I believe that you're going to be a god. And you believe in a god that was a man ascended, just as you are ascending to a godhood state." I said, "So, though you may use the terms, 'god' and 'Jesus,' they're a different god and Jesus than what I trust in."

And so, Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth and the life; no man comes to the Father but by Me." That is a radical statement! A lot of people wish that Jesus had not made that statement. We are accused as Christians as being too narrow. "You need to become more broadened in your outlook on life. Surely God would not restrict the path to Him by just one way." Well, you've got to then set aside the claim of Jesus Christ. And if you say, "He was wrong when He said this," then you're saying He is not trustworthy, His Word is not trustworthy. You see, one thing about Jesus making these radical claims, man, He forces you to a decision. Either He is the way to the Father, the only way to the Father, or there are other ways to the Father. And if there are other ways to the Father, then Jesus was not telling the truth. If He was not telling the truth, then how can you trust Him on anything else that He said? So, call me narrow, call me what you wish. Jesus made this radical claim, and you either believe it or not.

Jesus said,

If you had known me, you should have known my Father also: and from henceforth you know him, and have seen him. Philip said unto him, Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us. And Jesus said unto him, Have I been so long a time with you, and yet have you not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me has seen the Father ( John 14:7-9 );

What a radical statement! Jesus is getting down to the end of the road, and He's just making one radical statement after another. "He that hath seen Me . . . " Do you want to see the Father? "Look, you've been around Me for a long time. If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father. For," he goes on to say, "the works that I do I don't do of Myself, but the Father who dwells in Me, He does the works. That words that I speak are not My words, but the Father who sent Me. I'm here representing the Father, and if you have seen Me, you have seen the Father."

Now, God would appreciate it if all of us could make that statement, but I don't think that any of us can. I am to be God's representative in the world. I am here to do the works of God. I am here to speak the Word of God. But unfortunately, many times I'm doing my own works and speaking my own words. So it's impossible that I could say, "If you've seen me, you've seen the Father." In some situations, yes; but not in all. But with Jesus it was consistent all the way through His entire life. He was a perfect representation of the Father; in all of His works, in all of His words, in all of His deeds, He represented the Father.

And so, do you want to know what God is like? You can look at Jesus Christ. For the purpose of His coming was to manifest the Father to man. "God, who in sundry times and in diverse manners spoke to our Fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His own dear Son" ( Hebrews 1:1-2 ). God revealed Himself in times past through the prophets, but now He has revealed Himself in the perfect revelation through His own Son. And if you have seen Jesus, you have seen the Father. And so, what kind of a God has He revealed to us? A loving God, a compassionate God, a God who is concerned for the needs of man, a God who is weeping over the failure of man, a God who desires to redeem lost man. For He has said, "I have come to seek and to save that which was lost" ( Luke 19:10 ). What a beautiful God He has revealed to us through all of His life and ministry. And that is the God that we know and we worship and we serve, the God revealed to us by Jesus Christ. "If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father."

Now, in a sense, we are also God's representatives upon the earth. And even more so, we who have taken the position of teachers of God's Word. We stand here to represent God and to declare God's truth to you, but what an awesome responsibility that is. Because standing here as God's representative, God is concerned that I represent Him in truth.

Now, Moses got into big trouble because he failed to represent God rightly. When they came to the wilderness area and they were out of water the second time, and the people began to murmur and complain unto Moses, and Moses went in and said, "God, I'm sick of it. I'm tired of it. I can't stand it any more! I didn't give birth to all of these people, and I'm tired of carrying their load. Here they are murmuring again. God, I'm so sick of it." And God said, "Hey, cool down, Moses. Go and out and just speak to the rock and they'll get water." But Moses went out and he was angry. And he said to the people, "Must I smite this rock again and give you water?" And he took his rod and he smote the rock in anger. And God, in His love and grace, gave water, but He said, "Moses, come here, son." He said, "Moses, you really misrepresented Me before those people. You went out in anger. You smote the rock. I told you just speak to it. And now, they are thinking that I'm angry with them, I'm upset with them. I'm not angry or upset with them, Moses. But they think I am because you were representing Me to be that way. Moses, I don't like being misrepresented." I wonder what God thinks about all these people who represent Him as being broke. Bankrupt and almost out of business! "Poor God, bail Him out quickly, friends! Get your letter in, or God's going to be in the bread lines next week, and His work is going to fail." What a poor representation of God.

And so, God said, "Moses, because you failed to represent Me there at the waters of Meribah, you cannot go into the Promised Land." Hey, that's serious business. Your lifelong dream is shattered. Why? Because you failed to properly represent Me before the people at Meribah. God's representative. Oh, God, help me to always realize that awesome responsibility of being His representative. So, if ever I look like I'm ever angry with you, I'm not representing God. Because He's not angry with you. He loves you. If I look like I'm really upset and out of sorts, I'm not really representing God, because He's not upset and out of sorts. God has such great patience and compassion and love towards you. And to be His representative, we must also have great compassion and mercy towards one another.

"He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father." What marvelous words. "How do you say then, 'Show us the Father'?"

Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in me? the words that I speak unto you I don't speak them of myself: but the Father that dwells in me, he is doing the works. Believe me, that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake ( John 14:10-11 ).

All the way along, Jesus was saying, "The works that I do, they bear witness of Me. I claim to be the Son of God, and the works that I am doing bear witness that My claim is true. I am doing the works of God." What were the works of God? The healing of the sick, the lifting of those that were fallen. This is God's work in a needy world. "I'm doing the work of the Father, or else believe Me for the very work's sake, for the witness they are to you."

Verily, verily, I say unto you, That he that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also ( John 14:12 );

We are to do those same works that Jesus did, of showing compassion and love and tenderness and concern and care.

And greater than these shall he do, because I go to my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you shall ask anything in my name, I will do it ( John 14:12-14 ).

Now, those are two promises for prayer that are absolutely so broad that they are staggering. Jesus is saying, "Whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it." Broad, broad promises. But to whom are the promises made? He's not talking now to the multitudes. He's not standing in the temple court crying out, "Ask anything in My name, and I'll do it!" He's talking with those men who have forsaken all to follow Him. He's talking to His disciples. And what constitutes a disciple? Jesus said, "If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me" ( Mark 8:34 ). To whom is this broad promise of prayer made? To that man who first of all has denied himself. So, his prayer isn't going to be one for his own glory, for his own wealth, for his own enrichment. Jesus isn't saying here, "Just ask for a Cadillac, and I'll give you one. Ask for a Mercedes, ask anything, I'll give it to you!" "Oh, alright," you know. And I start making out my list of all of those things that I want for me and for my flesh. No, no, no; you've got it wrong. "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself." And that's the first qualification to a man who has this broad promise.

Secondly, "let him take up his cross." By that, submitting himself totally to the will of the Father. "Not my will; Thy will be done." And that man who has totally submitted his life to the will of the Father, who has denied himself, who is following Jesus Christ, he has a glorious broad promise from the Lord, "Whatsoever you ask in My name, I will do it." Because whatever I am asking will be according to the will of God, because that's what I desire to see.

Now, there are some people who put down the prayer, "Not my will; Thy will be done." But I think that's almost blasphemous to put down that prayer, because Jesus was the one who offered that prayer. "Lord, Your will be done." They say, "Oh, that's a lack of faith." No, it isn't. It's greater trust than anything else. It's greater trust than demanding that I have my way done in this matter of which I know so little about. I'm so stupid in the overall program and purposes of God. I see things one way today, but I see them differently tomorrow. And it would be a shame if God would answer every little whim that I had and change of mind, "Oh, no, Lord, remember yesterday? No, please, no; that was wrong, Lord. This is really what I need." These broad promises of prayer are glorious, but they are to the disciples. They are restricted.

Jesus said,

If you love me, keep my commandments ( John 14:15 ).

What is His commandment? That we love one another as He has loved us. In John, again, in writing his epistle, speaks about keeping His commandments. But then, he says, His commandment is that we should love one another, even as He gave His commandment. "If you love me," Jesus said, "keep My commandment." So, I show my love to Him by loving you. Yes, I love Him. And for that reason, I love you. Because that's what He has commanded. But, fortunately, it's very easy because you're so loving. Isn't that neat?

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter ( John 14:16 ),

"Parakletos," one to come alongside of you and help you.

that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth ( John 14:16-17 );

So here we have the Trinity. Jesus is saying, "I'm going to pray to the Father. He's going to give you another Comforter, the Spirit of truth, that He may abide with you forever." And so, the Father, the Son and the Spirit.

whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knows him; but you know him; for he dwells with you, and shall be in you ( John 14:17 ).

And so here we see a twofold relationship of the disciples to the Holy Spirit. Number one: He is dwelling para, with you...the same "parakletos," but this is just para, the preposition, "He's dwelling with you, alongside of you." "But He shall be in you." He's going to come on in.

Now, prior to your receiving Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit was dwelling with you. It was the Holy Spirit that caused you to realize that you were a sinner and you needed help. It was the Holy Spirit that pointed out Jesus Christ as the answer to your sin problem. It was the Holy Spirit that drew you to Jesus Christ and caused you to come and say, "Oh, Lord, come into my life and take over." That was the work of the Holy Spirit with you, to bring you to that place of surrendering your life to Jesus Christ. And the moment you surrendered your life to Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit came in you and began to indwell you.

"Ye know him," Jesus said, "this Spirit, because He is with you, but He is going to be in you. He's going to come and indwell in your life." Paul said, "Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you? You're not your own; you've been bought with a price. Therefore, glorify God with your body and your spirit, which are His" ( 1 Corinthians 6:20 ).

So, the Holy Spirit; the twofold relationship, dwelling with me to bring me to Christ, and then, now dwelling in me now that I have received Jesus Christ. But, as we move on to the book of Acts, we find one further relationship, where Jesus, in Acts 1:8 ,said, "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes epi, upon you." And so, there is that empowering of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer, which we will touch on when we get to the book of Acts as soon as we finish the book of John. So, here we find a twofold relationship. There is a threefold relationship, but Jesus isn't making mention of that here.

Jesus said,

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. But yet a little while, and the world will see me no more; but you see me: because I live, ye shall live also ( John 14:18-19 ).

Now, He's been talking about going away, "Where I'm going you cannot come." He's been talking about His death, but He's also talking about His eternal life. "I'm going to go away; the world is not going to see Me any more, but you see Me. And because I live, you shall live also."

So, my hope of eternal life is based on the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. If Christ is not raised from the dead, then my hope is in vain, my preaching is in vain, and I'm a very miserable person. But because Jesus is risen from dead, Peter said, "Thank God we have a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, undefiled, which fades not away, which is reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith" ( 1 Peter 1:3-5 ). So that glorious living hope that we have, "Because He lives, we too shall live."

At that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you ( John 14:20 ).

What a glorious relationship that we have now with God! Christ is dwelling in the Father; we are dwelling in Christ; Christ is dwelling in us; the Father is dwelling in us. How beautiful it is!

He that hath my commandments, and keeps them, he it is that loves me: and he that loves me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him ( John 14:21 ).

To whom? The one that is keeping His commandments.

Judas said unto him, not Iscariot, [he's already gone,] Lord, how is it that you will manifest thyself to us, and not to the world? And Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man loves me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him ( John 14:22-23 ).

Man's relationship with God must be through obedience to the Word, the commandment of Jesus Christ, demonstrated and manifested in our love. And so, if we love Him, we'll keep His words and the Father and Christ will come and make their abode. They will come and dwell with us.

Paul, writing to the Ephesians, said, "that Christ might dwell in your hearts through faith." That word dwell is the same word here, abode. And it literally means, "just settle down and make himself at home in your heart." Has your heart become Christ's home? Does He feel comfortable there? Does He feel at home? Or does the art on the wall sort of bother Him? What's in your heart, you see? What kind of an imagine or pictures are there on the wall of your heart? As Jesus is relaxing in the lounge and He looks at the wall, what kind of a picture does He see, observing? When I first invited the Lord in my heart, I went in and I could see that He was very uncomfortable, and I said, "What's the matter, Lord?" And He said, "Oh, the pictures on the wall, I can't take them. You're going to have to get rid of that art!" I said, "But Lord, that's costly stuff!" He said, "Get rid of it. Can't take it." What is in your heart? Oh, that Christ might just be at home there. That my heart might be Christ's home, that He might feel perfectly at home within my heart.

"He that loves me keeps my words. The Father will love him, will come and will settle down and make our home with him."

And he that loves me not will not keep my sayings: but the words which you hear are really not mine, but the Father's which sent me. These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, [the parakletos,] which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name ( John 14:24-26 ),

Again the Trinity, "the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name,"

he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you ( John 14:26 ).

And so here's the promise of that help that the Holy Spirit would give to us by teaching us all things, and by quickening our recall, bringing to our remembrance those things that He has said.

And then, the beautiful bequest of peace,

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid ( John 14:27 ).

And so, to a frightened bunch of troubled disciples, Jesus is saying, "Look, My peace I give to you." That kind of peace that He had when the boat was sinking and He was sleeping. That peace that comes through perfect confidence that the Father is in control of everything that surrounds my life. God's in control. The peace. "Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

You have heard how I said unto you, I am going away, and I am coming again. If you loved me, you would rejoice, because I said, I am going to the Father: the Father is greater than I ( John 14:28 ).

Interesting statement. Jesus said, "If you loved Me, you would rejoice. I'm going to die, I'm going to go be with the Father. Now, if you loved Me, you would rejoice." You know, isn't it interesting that when our loved ones die, we cry? If we really loved them, we would rejoice, because they have gone to be with the Lord. It's because we love ourselves that we cry. I would bring them back to this miserable old earth. I would bring them back to the decrepit old bodies. I would keep them from that glory of dwelling with God in His kingdom, in that new body, in that new glory with Him. Oh, I would keep them from that. I would bring them back to this old decrepit body and sit them there so that they can still give input to me. I've said it before, and I say it again; if the Lord should see fit to take me, and a group gathers around and says, "Oh, Lord, don't let him die, bring him back, Lord," when I get back, watch out! I'll bust ya!

Jesus said, "If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I'm going to the Father." Oh, how glorious to be with the Father! You see, it's only because we don't have a true concept of what heaven is like. We think, "Oh, earth is so wonderful. Life is so glorious. He's so young, what a shame that he had to die so young." Oh, what a blessing, he doesn't have to do through all the misery of this sick world. You just have the wrong concept of heaven. You don't realize how glorious it is. And that's why Paul prayed, "that the mind of your understanding might be enlightened by the Spirit that you may know what is the hope of your calling" ( Ephesians 1:18 ). If you only knew what God has in store for those that loved Him. If you only knew what a glorious inheritance there is for those saints in light, you wouldn't be praying, "Oh, God, bring them back." You'd be praying, "Lord, Your will be done."

In the final days my mother was with us, and the ministers used to come and pray, "Oh, God, heal her," and all. When they'd leave, she'd smile and she'd say, "I wasn't agreeing with them in prayer. I don't want to be healed; I want to go and be with the Lord. Why don't they just let me go and be with the Lord instead of praying, 'God heal me'? So, I just wasn't agreeing with that prayer." Boy, if we only knew the glory of God's kingdom.

And Jesus said,

I have told you before it is come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, you might believe ( John 14:29 ).

He said this back in the thirteenth chapter, the nineteenth verse; and this again is one of the purposes for prophecy in the Bible to make a believer out of you. Telling things in advance before they happen, so that when they happen, you will believe. Yes, He knew what He was talking about. And so Jesus is calling upon this prophecy as a pillar for faith. "I've told you before it comes to pass, so that when it does come to pass, you might believe. Remember that I told you and you'll believe that I am in control. I know what I'm talking about. It's all happening according to plan. Things are not out of hand."

Hereafter I'm not going to be able to talk much with you: for the prince of this world comes ( John 14:30 ),

And Jesus is soon going to go out into the garden to face the prince of this world. He's going to go out into the Garden of Gethsemane and fight against every force and power of hell. "The prince of this world comes,"

but he has nothing [Jesus said] in me ( John 14:30 ).

But there in the garden a tremendous battle was waged. And Jesus sweat, as it were, great drops of blood, falling to the ground, as there He was fighting this tremendous spiritual warfare as He was facing the cross.

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let's go ( John 14:31 ).

And so, with His disciples He now arises and He makes His way with them towards the Garden of Gethsemane. And chapter 15 is a discourse on the way to the Garden to Gethsemane, probably as they were passing by some vineyards. And He is now teaching them of that glorious relationship that they are to have with Him, as the vine and the branches.

So next week, chapters 15 and 16. And now, may the Lord plant His Word in your heart tonight. And may the Spirit bring it to your remembrance. And may He enable you this week to love as God would have you to love, even as Christ loved us. And may our lives be open and yielded to that work of God's Spirit, and may we each one be very concerned that we keep His commandment to love one another. And may God give us opportunities to show that love to each, by serving one another in love as His children. God bless you and help you as you put into practice His Word this week. In Jesus' name. "

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Copyright © 2014, Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, Ca.
Bibliographical Information
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Chuck Smith Bible Commentary". 2014.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

3. Jesus’ comforting revelation in view of His departure 14:1-24

Peter’s question was only the first of several that the disciples proceeded to ask Jesus. This shows their bewilderment and discouragement. They should have been comforting Him in view of what lay ahead of Him (John 12:27; John 13:21), but instead Jesus graciously proceeded to comfort them by clarifying what lay ahead of them.

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". 2012.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The promise of the Spirit 14:15-21

At the end of His answer to Peter’s question (John 13:36), Jesus moved the conversation back to the general theme of preparation for His departure (John 14:4). He did the same thing after answering Philip’s question (John 14:8). Obedience to the will of God is not only a condition for getting answers to prayer. It is also an evidence of love for God. Love for God is the controlling idea in the following verses (John 14:15-21).

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". 2012.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Jesus post-resurrection appearances would convince the Eleven of His deity. He described this condition as mutual abiding with the Father (cf. John 14:10-11). Moreover these appearances would also convince them of their union with Jesus. They would do so by confirming Jesus’ promises of their union with Him (John 14:13-14). Jesus expounded both abidings later (John 14:23-24; ch. 17).

Some interpreters take the day in view as referring to Pentecost. [Note: E.g., Tenney, "John," p. 147; and Blum, p. 324.] However because of the flow of the argument "that day" seems to refer to Easter rather than Pentecost.

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on John 14:20". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". 2012.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

At that day ye shall know,.... The things they should know, or the objects of knowledge are,

that I [am] in my Father; in his bosom, in union with him, partaker of the same nature, perfections, and glory with him, and equal to him:

and you in me: that they were in union with him as the branches in the vine, and as the members are in the head, and how they were loved in him, chosen in him, righteous in him, risen with him, and made to sit together in heavenly places in him:

and I in you; formed in their hearts, living in them, dwelling in them, as in his temples, and filling them with grace and glory. The knowledge of these things promised, designs a more clear and distinct knowledge of them; something of them was known already, but not so perfectly as should be hereafter; and this does not suppose that these unions between the Father and Christ, and between Christ and his people, shall then begin to be; for as the union between the Father and the Son is as eternal as themselves; so the union between Christ and his people, as he is the head and representative of them, is as early as his investiture with the office of a Mediator, and his suretyship engagements for them, which were from eternity; and are the ground, and foundation of his being in them, and they in him in the effectual calling; nor does it suggest that they shall begin to be known; only that they shall be known in a more perfect manner: the time when this will be, is "at that day": meaning either when he should "live" in the body again, be raised from the dead, when he should he declared to be the Son of God with power, when it would appear, that he had the same power with the Father, by raising himself from the dead, and when he would rise as a public head representing them, for their justification, and they should see themselves justified and discharged in him; or the day of "Pentecost", when "the Spirit of truth", he promises to pray for, should come to them in an extraordinary manner, and lead them into the knowledge of these things; or the last day, the resurrection morn, when, by virtue of union to Christ, the saints shall rise and "live" with him for ever, and shall have a perfect knowledge of these several unions; see John 17:21.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on John 14:20". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". 1999.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

Christ's Consolatory Discourse.

      18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.   19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.   20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.   21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.   22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?   23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.   24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.

      When friends are parting, it is a common request they make to each other, "Pray let us hear from you as often as you can:" this Christ engaged to his disciples, that out of sight they should not be out of mind.

      I. He promises that he would continue his care of them (John 14:18; John 14:18): "I will not leave you orphans, or fatherless; for, though I leave you, yet I leave you this comfort, I will come to you." His departure from them was that which grieved them; but it was not so bad as they apprehended, for it was neither total nor final. 1. Not total. "Though I leave you without my bodily presence, yet I do not leave you without comfort." Though children, and left little, yet they had received the adoption of sons, and his Father would be their Father, with whom those who otherwise would be fatherless find mercy. Note, The case of true believers, though sometimes it may be sorrowful, is never comfortless, because they are never orphans: for God is their Father, who is an everlasting Father. 2. Not final: I will come to you, erchomai--I do come; that is, (1.) "I will come speedily to you at my resurrection, I will not be long away, but will be with you again in a little time." He had often said, The third day I will rise again. (2.) "I will be coming daily to you in my Spirit;" in the tokens of his love, and visits of his grace, he is still coming. (3.) "I will come certainly at the end of time; surely I will come quickly to introduce you into the joy of your Lord." Note, The consideration of Christ's coming to us saves us from being comfortless in his removals from us; for, if he depart for a season, it is that we may receive him for ever. Let this moderate our grief, The Lord is at hand.

      II. He promises that they should continue their acquaintance with him and interest in him (John 14:19; John 14:20): Yet a little while, and the world sees me no more, that is, Now I am no more in the world. After his death, the world saw him no more, for, though he rose to life, he never showed himself to all the people,Acts 10:41. The malignant world thought they had seen enough of him, and cried, Away with him; crucify him; and so shall their doom be; they shall see him no more. Those only that see Christ with an eye of faith shall see him for ever. The world sees him no more till his second coming; but his disciples have communion with him in his absence.

      1. You see me, and shall continue to see me, when the world sees me no more. They saw him with their bodily eyes after his resurrection, for he showed himself to them by many infallible proofs,Acts 1:8. And then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord. They saw him with an eye of faith after his ascension, sitting at God's right hand, as Lord of all; saw that in him which the world saw not.

      2. Because I live, you shall live also. That which grieved them was, that their Master was dying, and they counted upon nothing else but to die with him. No, saith Christ, (1.) I live; this the great God glories in, I live, saith the Lord, and Christ saith the same; not only, I shall live, as he saith of them, but, I do live; for he has life in himself, and lives for evermore. We are not comfortless, while we know that our Redeemer lives. (2.) Therefore you shall live also. Note, The life of Christians is bound up in the life of Christ; as sure and as long as he lives, those that by faith are united to him shall live also; they shall live spiritually, a divine life in communion with God. This life is hid with Christ; if the head and root live, the members and branches live also. They shall live eternally; their bodies shall rise in the virtue of Christ's resurrection; it will be well with them in the world to come. It cannot but be well with all that are his, Isaiah 26:19.

      3. You shall have the assurance of this (John 14:20; John 14:20): At that day, when I am glorified, when the Spirit is poured out, you shall know more clearly and certainly than you do now that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. (1.) These glorious mysteries will be fully known in heaven; At that day, when I shall receive you to myself, you shall know perfectly that which now you see through a glass darkly. Now it appears not what we shall be, but then it will appear what we were. (2.) They were more fully known after the pouring out of the Spirit upon the apostles; at that day divine light should shine, and their eyes should see more clearly, their knowledge should greatly advance and increase then, would become more extensive and more distinct, and like the blind man's at the second touch of Christ's hand, who at first only saw men as trees walking. (3.) They are known by all that receive the Spirit of truth, to their abundant satisfaction, for in the knowledge of this is founded their fellowship with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ. They know, [1.] That Christ is in the Father, is one with the Father, by their experience of what he has wrought for them and in them; they find what an admirable consent and harmony there is between Christianity and natural religion, that that is grafted into this, and so they know that Christ is in the Father. [2.] That Christ is in them; experienced Christians know by the Spirit that Christ abides in them, 1 John 3:24. [3.] That they are in Christ, for the relation is mutual, and equally near on both sides, Christ in them and they in Christ, which speaks an intimate and inseparable union; in the virtue of which it is that because he lives they shall live also. Note, First, Union with Christ is the life of believers; and their relation to him, and to God through him, is their felicity. Secondly, The knowledge of this union is their unspeakable joy and satisfaction; they were now in Christ, and he in them, but he speaks of it as a further act of grace that they should know it, and have the comfort of it. An interest in Christ and the knowledge of it are sometimes separated.

      III. He promises that he would love them, and manifest himself to them, John 14:21-24; John 14:21-24. Here observe,

      1. Who they are whom Christ will look upon, and accept, as lovers of him; those that have his commandments, and keep them. By this Christ shows that the kind things he here said to his disciples were intended not for those only that were now his followers, but for all that should believe in him through their word. Here is, (1.) The duty of those who claim the dignity of being disciples. Having Christ's commandments, we must keep them; as Christians in name and profession we have Christ's commandments, we have them sounding in our ears, written before our eyes, we have the knowledge of them; but this is not enough; would we approve ourselves Christians indeed, we must keep them. Having them in our heads, we must keep them in our hearts and lives. (2.) The dignity of those that do the duty of disciples. They are looked upon by Christ to be such as love him. Not those that have the greatest wit and know how to talk for him, but those that keep his commandments. Note, The surest evidence of our love to Christ is obedience to the laws of Christ. Such is the love of a subject to his sovereign, a dutiful, respectful, obediential love, a conformity to his will, and satisfaction in his wisdom.

      2. What returns he will make to them for their love; rich returns; there is no love lost upon Christ. (1.) They shall have the Father's love: He that loveth me shall be loved of my Father. We could not love God if he did not first, out of his good-will to us, give us his grace to love him; but there is a love of complacency promised to those that do love God, Proverbs 8:17. He loves them, and lets them know that he loves them, smiles upon them, and embraces them. God so loves the Son as to love all those that love him. (2.) They shall have Christ's love: And I will love him, as God-man, as Mediator. God will love him as a Father, and I will love him as a brother, an elder brother. The Creator will love him, and be the felicity of his being; the Redeemer will love him, and be the protector of his well-being. In the nature of God, nothing shines more brightly than this, that God is love. And in the undertaking of Christ nothing appears more glorious than this, that he loved us. Now both these loves are the crown and comfort, the grace and glory, which shall be to all those that love the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Christ was now leaving his disciples, but promises to continue his love to them; for he not only retains a kindness for believers, though absent, but is doing them kindness while absent, for he bears them on his heart, and ever lives interceding for them. (3.) They shall have the comfort of that love: I will manifest myself to him. Some understand it of Christ's showing himself alive to his disciples after his resurrection; but, being promised to all that love him and keep his commandments, it must be construed so as to extend to them. There is a spiritual manifestation of Christ and his love made to all believers. When he enlightens their minds to know his love, and the dimensions of it (Ephesians 3:18; Ephesians 3:19), enlivens their graces, and draws them into exercise, and thus enlarges their comforts in himself--when he clears up the evidences of their interest in him, and gives them tokens of his love, experience of his tenderness, and earnests of his kingdom and glory,--then he manifests himself to them; and Christ is manifested to none but those to whom he is pleased to manifest himself.

      3. What occurred upon Christ's making this promise.

      (1.) One of the disciples expresses his wonder and surprise at it, John 14:22; John 14:22. Observe, [1.] Who it was that said this--Judas, not Iscariot. Judah, or Judas, was a famous name; the most famous tribe in Israel was that of Judah; two of Christ's disciples were of that name: one of them was the traitor, the other was the brother of James (Luke 6:16), one of those that were akin to Christ, Matthew 13:55. He is called Lebbeus and Thaddeus, was the penman of the last of the epistles, which in our translation, for distinction's sake, we call the epistle of Jude. This was he that spoke here. Observe, First, There was a very good man, and a very bad man, called by the same name; for names commend us not to God, nor do they make men worse. Judas the apostle was never the worse, nor Judas the apostate ever the better, for being namesakes. But, Secondly, The evangelist carefully distinguishes between them; when he speaks of this pious Judas, he adds, not Iscariot. Take heed of mistaking; let us not confound the precious and the vile. [2.] What he said--Lord how is it? which intimates either, First, the weakness of his understanding. So some take it. He expected the temporal kingdom of the Messiah, that it should appear in external pomp and power, such as all the world would wonder after. "How, then," thinks he, "should it be confined to us only?" ti gegonen--"what is the matter now, that thou wilt not show thyself openly as is expected, that the Gentiles may come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising?" Note, We create difficulties to ourselves by mistaking the nature of Christ's kingdom, as if it were of this world. Or, Secondly, as expressing the strength of his affections, and the humble and thankful sense he had of Christ's distinguishing favours to them: Lord, how is it? He is amazed at the condescensions of divine grace, as David, 2 Samuel 7:18. What is there in us to deserve so great a favour? Note, 1. Christ's manifesting himself to his disciples is done in a distinguishing way-to them, and not to the world that sits in darkness; to the base, and not to the mighty and noble; to babes, and not to the wise and prudent. Distinguishing favours are very obliging; considering who are passed by, and who are pitched upon. 2. It is justly marvellous in our eyes; for it is unaccountable, and must be resolved into free and sovereign grace. Even so, Father, because it seemed good unto thee.

      (2.) Christ, in answer hereto, explains and confirms what he had said, John 14:23; John 14:24. He overlooks what infirmity there was in what Judas spoke, and goes on with his comforts.

      [1.] He further explains the condition of the promise, which was loving him, and keeping his commandments. And, as to this, he shows what an inseparable connection there is between love and obedience; love is the root, obedience is the fruit. First, Where a sincere love to Christ is in the heart, there will be obedience: "If a man love me indeed, that love will be such a commanding constraining principle in him, that, no question, he will keep my words." Where there is true love to Christ there is a value for his favour, a veneration for his authority, and an entire surrender of the whole man to his direction and government. Where love is, duty follows of course, is easy and natural, and flows from a principle of gratitude. Secondly, On the other hand, where there is no true love to Christ there will be no care to obey him: He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings,John 14:24; John 14:24. This comes in here as a discovery of those that do not love Christ; whatever they pretend, certainly those do not love him that believe not his truths, and obey not his laws, to whom Christ's sayings are but as idle tales, which he heeds not, or hard sayings, which he likes not. It is also a reason why Christ will not manifest himself to the world that doth not love him, because they put this affront upon him, not to keep his sayings; why should Christ be familiar with those that will be strange to him?

      [2.] He further explains the promise (John 14:23; John 14:23): If a man thus love me, I will manifest myself to him. First, My Father will love him; this he had said before (John 14:21; John 14:21), and here repeats it for the confirming of our faith; because it is hard to imagine that the great god should make those the objects of his love that had made themselves vessels of his wrath. Jude wondered that Christ should manifest himself to them; but this answers it, "If my Father love you, why should not I be free with you?" Secondly, We will come unto him, and make our abode with him. This explains the meaning of Christ's manifesting himself to him, and magnifies the favour. 1. Not only,I will, but, We will, I and the Father, who, in this, are one. See John 14:9; John 14:9. The light and love of God are communicated to man in the light and love of the Redeemer, so that wherever Christ is formed the image of God is stamped. 2. Not only, "I will show myself to him at a distance," but, "We will come to him, to be near him, to be with him," such are the powerful influences of divine graces and comforts upon the souls of those that love Christ in sincerity. 3. Not only, "I will give him a transient view of me, or make him a short and running visit," but, We will take up our abode with him which denotes complacency in him and constancy to him. God will not only love obedient believers, but he will take a pleasure in loving them, will rest in love to them, Zephaniah 3:17. He will be with them as at his home.

      [3.] He gives a good reason both to bind us to observe the condition and encourage us to depend upon the promise. The word which you hear is not mine, but his that sent me,John 14:24; John 14:24. To this purport he had often spoken (John 7:16; John 8:28; John 12:44), and here it comes in very pertinently. First, the stress of duty is laid upon the precept of Christ as our rule, and justly, for that word of Christ which we are to keep is the Father's word, and his will the Father's will. Secondly, The stress of our comfort is laid upon the promise of Christ. But forasmuch as, in dependence upon that promise, we must deny ourselves, and take up our cross, and quit all, it concerns us to enquire whether the security be sufficient for us to venture our all upon; and this satisfies us that it is, that the promise is not Christ's bare word, but the Father's which sent him, which therefore we may rely upon.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Henry, Matthew. "Complete Commentary on John 14:20". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". 1706.