Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

John 14:31

but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me. Get up, let us go from here.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - God;   Jesus Continued;   Obedience;   Thompson Chain Reference - Christ's;   Future, the;   Heaven;   Heavenly;   Home;   Knowledge;   Knowledge-Ignorance;   Obedience;   Obedience-Disobedience;   The Topic Concordance - Jesus Christ;   Love;   Will of God;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Love of Christ, the;   Love to God;  
Dictionaries:
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Love;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Holy Ghost;   Holman Bible Dictionary - John, the Gospel of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Children (Sons) of God;   God;   Holy Spirit;   John, Theology of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Consciousness;   Example;   Love (2);   Mediator;   Missions;   Obedience (2);   Peace (2);   Perfection (of Jesus);   Prayer (2);   Sacrifice (2);   Self-Control;   Son of God;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Fruit;   Pentecost;   Samuel;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Go;   Obedience of Christ;   Prayers of Jesus;   Trinity;  
Devotionals:
Daily Light on the Daily Path - Devotion for January 14;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Arise, let us go hence - Calmet supposes that Christ, having rendered thanks to God, and sung the usual hymn, Matthew 26:30; Mark 14:26; rose from the table, left the city, and went towards the garden of Olives, or garden of Gethsemane, on the road to which, a part of the following discourse was delivered. It was now about midnight, and the moon was almost full, it being the 14th day of her age, about the time in which the Jewish passover was to be slain.

The reader should carefully note the conduct of our Lord. He goes to die as a Sacrifice, out of love to mankind, in obedience to the Divine will, and with unshaken courage. All our actions should be formed on this plan. They should have the love of God and man for their principle and motive; his glory for their end; and his will for their rule. He who lives and acts thus shall live for ever. Amen.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on John 14:31". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/john-14.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

That the world may know that I love the Father - That it might not be alleged that his virtue had not been subjected to trial. It was subjected. He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin, Hebrews 4:15. He passed through the severest forms of temptation, that it might be seen and known that his holiness was proof to all trial, and that human nature might be so pure as to resist all forms of temptation. This will be the case with all the saints in heaven, and it was the case with Jesus on earth.

Even so I do - In all things he obeyed; and he showed that, in the face of calamities, persecutions, and temptations, he was still disposed to obey his Father. This he did that the world might know that he loved the Father. So should we bear trials and resist temptation; and so, through. persecution and calamity, should we show that we are actuated by the love of God. “Arise, let us go hence.” It has been commonly supposed that Jesus and the apostles now rose from the paschal supper and went to the Mount of Olives, and that the remainder of the discourse in John 15; 16, together with the prayer in John 17, was delivered while on the way to the garden of Gethsemane; but some have supposed that they merely rose from the table, and that the discourse was finished before they left the room. The former is the more correct opinion. It was now probably toward midnight, and the moon was at the full, and the scene was one, therefore, of great interest and tenderness. Jesus, with a little band, was himself about to die, and he went forth in the stillness of the night, counselling his little company in regard to their duties and dangers, and invoking the protection and blessing of God his Father to attend, to sanctify, and guide them in the arduous labors, the toils, and the persecutions they were yet to endure, John 17.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/john-14.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

John 14:31

But that the world may know that I love the Father

Christ’s departure

1.
It is well that “we do not know when the last time is the last: unconsciously and without premonition we leave our door, we retire to bed, we grasp the hand of our friend for the last time: and by and by it is said, “He is not, for God hath taken him.” How much of mercy there is in this veiling of the future, this sparing of farewells, we may understand from the flutter and pain with which foreseen and calculated things are done for the last time. We leave home, friends, church, and, even though it be for improved conditions, there is a laceration in the parting proportioned to the length of association.

2. We are differently constituted. Some can change their homes with as little thought or feeling as they can change their clothes. They have lived in half a dozen houses, worshipped in half a dozen churches. They strike no deep roots, and feel no parting sorrow deeper than good natural regret. Hardly is this the finest type of human feeling. To merely be put down on a surface and strike no roots difficult or painful to pull up, is a grave implication of either the plant or the soil. In this departure

I. CHRIST WAS IMPELLED BY HIS SUPREME SENSE OF DUTY. “As the Father gave Me commandment.” No self-interest, no sentiment, was ever permitted to interfere with this sense of duty. While yet a youth it was the supreme law of life--“Wist ye not,” etc. As a man it dominated all impulses of filial affection. “Woman, what have I to do with thee?”

1. In all great lives the sense of duty is dominant. Sometimes God gives reasons for what He requires of us; but if the only reason is that God has demanded it we may not hesitate. As with an army or a child, the commander and father may not be able to give reasons, nevertheless duty is imperative. God has many purposes we cannot understand.

2. In many of us the sense of duty is weak. We consult our convenience, advantage, likings. How rarely we choose unpleasant work because of its importance!

3. No strong or noble character can come out of this. A man who will not for the sake of duty do an arduous thing will never build up his moral strength or glorify God.

II. ANOTHER IMPULSE WAS TO PRODUCE THE IMPRESSION OF HIS FILIAL AFFECTION. “That the world may know.”

1. Love is the inspiration of all high duty. Duty is not mere measured service. A son who weighed the literal word of command could hardly be called dutiful.

2. Our Lord attached great importance to the impression which His loving duty made upon men. He would have the world see it so that it might inspire love. What shall I do to show my love to God? Let selfishness or sentiment come in, and how narrowed becomes the sphere of duty, and how poor its motive I There can be no blessing upon it.

III. TO MAINTAIN DUTY AND LOVE THE MASTER TOOK NO COUNT OF EASE OR SAFETY. “Arise,” etc. He went forth to His foreseen passion and death. We often hesitate to run a risk for Him. He laid down His life for the sheep. To maintain duty He broke up the tenderest fellowship with His own. (H. Allon, D. D.)

Reflections on departure

(on removing to another place of worship):--Let us apply these words.

I. TO THE SON OF GOD IN THE SOLEMN MOMENT WHEN THEY WERE UTTERED. He was going to the garden, to that great and awful conflict in which the prophecy was to be fulfilled, that He should present His soul an offering for sin, and bear the burden of the world’s atonement. This was the last night of the Redeemer’s life. He had been eating the passover with His disciples. He could use these words with ideas and anticipations, of which they knew nothing. The traitor had gone, and made his arrangements; and our Lord saw this: yet there was nothing, either like fainting under the prospect, or rashness, or precipitancy, or passion: but all was calm and tranquil.

II. TO SEVERAL CIRCUMSTANCES OF PROVIDENCE AS THEY OCCUR TO OURSELVES.

1. To local removals of place and of habitation, when the voice of Providence and of God calls us from scenes and situations where we have been surrounded by kindred and congenial society; from our father’s house, from a particular habitation which we may have long occupied, where we may have felt and experienced much of the blessing of God; where we may have passed through many afflictions; and we feel we must say to ourselves, “Let us go hence,” there are many emotions which come upon the heart; and I should never envy that man his feelings, who had never experienced such emotions.

2. To moral circumstances, when we may be called to depart from circumstances of enjoyment, comfort, and tranquillity, and to enter upon scenes of adversity and misfortune, when we are called to experience what is painful and distressing to our mind and heart.

3. To what is spiritual. I cannot help thinking of the resolutions which have often been made, when these words have been carried home to the heart of a man by the Spirit of God; when he has determined to arise and go to his Father.

4. To the matter of death. That word “departure” conveys a grand truth: it is not extinction, but the going, the passing from one place to another; the continuance of consciousness, of every capacity, faculty, and feeling; and the passing of the intelligent spirit into another place, and another state.

III. TO OUR OWN PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES. If we are permitted to see another Sabbath, we hope to be worshipping in another sanctuary, rendered necessary by the Providence of God. We are going from a place interesting to our minds, hallowed to our remembrances

1. By the purposes to which it has been devoted.

2. By events which have transpired within it. Here souls have been born to God. Over this scene angels have rejoiced over sinners that have repented.

3. By relative recollections of interest and importance. Here many of you have the recollection of a pious ancestry; here you have been led by them; here perhaps you were dedicated in baptism; and here your parents have borne you upon their hearts.

4. By personal recollection. You rejoice, and give God thanks, that you were led here to hearken to the voice of the man of God, in exhibiting that truth by which you trust you were saved and sanctified. And many of you have peculiar recollections of seasons, in which the truth hath been peculiarly appropriate to your personal circumstances.

5. Painful recollections. You have to look back upon services neglected, and Sabbaths misimproved; when you have heard with indolence, or a critical and improper feeling; when you have conversed on what you have heard with flippancy, instead of retiring with it to pray. (T. Binney.)

The calmness of Christ

Christ’s calmness here in prospect of Gethsemane and the cross is in keeping with the whole tenor of His life, and suggests

I. HIS CONSCIOUSNESS OF THE RECTITUDE OF HIS CHARACTER AND PROCEDURE. Had He been conscious of any wrong against God or man, His conscience would have disturbed Him. Or had He had any misgiving as to the rectitude of His procedure He might have been disturbed. His calmness was not stoicism or indifference--for Christ was exquisitely sensitive and emotional.

II. A SETTLED SENSE OF HIS SUBLIME SUPERIORITY. Well He knew the ignorance and depravity of those who opposed Him, and He rose above it all. Their stormy insults awoke no ripple upon the deep translucent lake of His great nature.

III. AN INWARD ASSURANCE OF HIS ULTIMATE SUCCESS. He had an end to accomplish, and had laid His plans. He had calculated on all the opposition He had to encounter, and knew that He would “see of the travail of His soul,” etc.

IV. THE HARMONY OF ALL HIS IMPULSES AND POWERS. Because in us there are two elements warring--flesh and spirit--we are constantly being disturbed. Right wars against policy, conscience against impulse, and we get like the troubled sea. Not so with Christ, all the elements of His soul moved as harmoniously as do the planets. He was at one with Himself, as well as with God and the universe.

V. HIS COMMANDING CLAIM TO OUR IMITATION in the crisis of life and in death. (D. Thomas, D. D.)

A watchword

We cannot be long in one stay. A voice ever sounds in our ear, “Arise, let us go hence.” Even when we have conversed on the sweetest themes, or have enjoyed the holiest ordinances, we have not yet crone to our eternal abode; still are we on the march, and the trumpet soundeth, “Arise, let us go hence.” Our Lord was under marching orders, and He knew it: for Him there was no stay upon this earth. Hear how He calls Himself, and all His own, to move on, though bloody sweat and bloody death be in the way.

I. OUR MASTER’S WATCHWORD. “Arise, let us go hence.” By this stirring word

1. He expressed His desire to obey the Father. “As the Father gave Me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.”

2. He indicated His readiness to meet the arch-enemy. “The prince of this word cometh. Arise, let us go hence.”

3. He revealed His practical activity. All through the chapter observe our Lord’s energy. He is ever on the move. “I go. I will come again. I will do it. I will pray. Arise, let us go hence.”

4. He manifested His all-consuming love to us.

II. OUR OWN MOTTO. “Arise, let us go hence.” Ever onward, ever forward, we must go (Exodus 14:15).

1. Out of the world when first called by grace (2 Corinthians 6:17). How clear the call! How prompt should be our obedience! Jesus is without the camp, we go forth unto Him (Hebrews 13:13), We must arouse ourselves to make the separation. “Arise, let us go hence,”

2. Out of forbidden associations, if, as believers, we find ourselves like Lot in Sodom. “Escape for thy life” (Genesis 19:17).

3. Out of present attainments when growing in grace (Philippians 3:13-14).

4. Out of all rejoicing in self. There we must never stop for a single instant. Self-satisfaction should startle us.

5. To work, anywhere for Jesus. We should go away from Christian company and home comforts to win souls (Mark 16:15).

6. To defend the faith where it is most assailed. We should be prepared to quit our quiet to contend with the foe (Jude 1:3).

7. To suffer when the Lord lays affliction upon us (2 Corinthians 12:9).

8. To die when the voice from above calls us home (2 Timothy 4:6).

Conclusion:

1. Oh sinner, where would you go if suddenly summoned?

2. Oh saint, what better could happen to you than to rise and go hence? (C. H. Spurgeon.)
.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "John 14:31". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/john-14.html. 1905-1909. New York.

The Biblical Illustrator

John 14:31

But that the world may know that I love the Father

Christ’s departure

1.
It is well that “we do not know when the last time is the last: unconsciously and without premonition we leave our door, we retire to bed, we grasp the hand of our friend for the last time: and by and by it is said, “He is not, for God hath taken him.” How much of mercy there is in this veiling of the future, this sparing of farewells, we may understand from the flutter and pain with which foreseen and calculated things are done for the last time. We leave home, friends, church, and, even though it be for improved conditions, there is a laceration in the parting proportioned to the length of association.

2. We are differently constituted. Some can change their homes with as little thought or feeling as they can change their clothes. They have lived in half a dozen houses, worshipped in half a dozen churches. They strike no deep roots, and feel no parting sorrow deeper than good natural regret. Hardly is this the finest type of human feeling. To merely be put down on a surface and strike no roots difficult or painful to pull up, is a grave implication of either the plant or the soil. In this departure

I. CHRIST WAS IMPELLED BY HIS SUPREME SENSE OF DUTY. “As the Father gave Me commandment.” No self-interest, no sentiment, was ever permitted to interfere with this sense of duty. While yet a youth it was the supreme law of life--“Wist ye not,” etc. As a man it dominated all impulses of filial affection. “Woman, what have I to do with thee?”

1. In all great lives the sense of duty is dominant. Sometimes God gives reasons for what He requires of us; but if the only reason is that God has demanded it we may not hesitate. As with an army or a child, the commander and father may not be able to give reasons, nevertheless duty is imperative. God has many purposes we cannot understand.

2. In many of us the sense of duty is weak. We consult our convenience, advantage, likings. How rarely we choose unpleasant work because of its importance!

3. No strong or noble character can come out of this. A man who will not for the sake of duty do an arduous thing will never build up his moral strength or glorify God.

II. ANOTHER IMPULSE WAS TO PRODUCE THE IMPRESSION OF HIS FILIAL AFFECTION. “That the world may know.”

1. Love is the inspiration of all high duty. Duty is not mere measured service. A son who weighed the literal word of command could hardly be called dutiful.

2. Our Lord attached great importance to the impression which His loving duty made upon men. He would have the world see it so that it might inspire love. What shall I do to show my love to God? Let selfishness or sentiment come in, and how narrowed becomes the sphere of duty, and how poor its motive I There can be no blessing upon it.

III. TO MAINTAIN DUTY AND LOVE THE MASTER TOOK NO COUNT OF EASE OR SAFETY. “Arise,” etc. He went forth to His foreseen passion and death. We often hesitate to run a risk for Him. He laid down His life for the sheep. To maintain duty He broke up the tenderest fellowship with His own. (H. Allon, D. D.)

Reflections on departure

(on removing to another place of worship):--Let us apply these words.

I. TO THE SON OF GOD IN THE SOLEMN MOMENT WHEN THEY WERE UTTERED. He was going to the garden, to that great and awful conflict in which the prophecy was to be fulfilled, that He should present His soul an offering for sin, and bear the burden of the world’s atonement. This was the last night of the Redeemer’s life. He had been eating the passover with His disciples. He could use these words with ideas and anticipations, of which they knew nothing. The traitor had gone, and made his arrangements; and our Lord saw this: yet there was nothing, either like fainting under the prospect, or rashness, or precipitancy, or passion: but all was calm and tranquil.

II. TO SEVERAL CIRCUMSTANCES OF PROVIDENCE AS THEY OCCUR TO OURSELVES.

1. To local removals of place and of habitation, when the voice of Providence and of God calls us from scenes and situations where we have been surrounded by kindred and congenial society; from our father’s house, from a particular habitation which we may have long occupied, where we may have felt and experienced much of the blessing of God; where we may have passed through many afflictions; and we feel we must say to ourselves, “Let us go hence,” there are many emotions which come upon the heart; and I should never envy that man his feelings, who had never experienced such emotions.

2. To moral circumstances, when we may be called to depart from circumstances of enjoyment, comfort, and tranquillity, and to enter upon scenes of adversity and misfortune, when we are called to experience what is painful and distressing to our mind and heart.

3. To what is spiritual. I cannot help thinking of the resolutions which have often been made, when these words have been carried home to the heart of a man by the Spirit of God; when he has determined to arise and go to his Father.

4. To the matter of death. That word “departure” conveys a grand truth: it is not extinction, but the going, the passing from one place to another; the continuance of consciousness, of every capacity, faculty, and feeling; and the passing of the intelligent spirit into another place, and another state.

III. TO OUR OWN PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES. If we are permitted to see another Sabbath, we hope to be worshipping in another sanctuary, rendered necessary by the Providence of God. We are going from a place interesting to our minds, hallowed to our remembrances

1. By the purposes to which it has been devoted.

2. By events which have transpired within it. Here souls have been born to God. Over this scene angels have rejoiced over sinners that have repented.

3. By relative recollections of interest and importance. Here many of you have the recollection of a pious ancestry; here you have been led by them; here perhaps you were dedicated in baptism; and here your parents have borne you upon their hearts.

4. By personal recollection. You rejoice, and give God thanks, that you were led here to hearken to the voice of the man of God, in exhibiting that truth by which you trust you were saved and sanctified. And many of you have peculiar recollections of seasons, in which the truth hath been peculiarly appropriate to your personal circumstances.

5. Painful recollections. You have to look back upon services neglected, and Sabbaths misimproved; when you have heard with indolence, or a critical and improper feeling; when you have conversed on what you have heard with flippancy, instead of retiring with it to pray. (T. Binney.)

The calmness of Christ

Christ’s calmness here in prospect of Gethsemane and the cross is in keeping with the whole tenor of His life, and suggests

I. HIS CONSCIOUSNESS OF THE RECTITUDE OF HIS CHARACTER AND PROCEDURE. Had He been conscious of any wrong against God or man, His conscience would have disturbed Him. Or had He had any misgiving as to the rectitude of His procedure He might have been disturbed. His calmness was not stoicism or indifference--for Christ was exquisitely sensitive and emotional.

II. A SETTLED SENSE OF HIS SUBLIME SUPERIORITY. Well He knew the ignorance and depravity of those who opposed Him, and He rose above it all. Their stormy insults awoke no ripple upon the deep translucent lake of His great nature.

III. AN INWARD ASSURANCE OF HIS ULTIMATE SUCCESS. He had an end to accomplish, and had laid His plans. He had calculated on all the opposition He had to encounter, and knew that He would “see of the travail of His soul,” etc.

IV. THE HARMONY OF ALL HIS IMPULSES AND POWERS. Because in us there are two elements warring--flesh and spirit--we are constantly being disturbed. Right wars against policy, conscience against impulse, and we get like the troubled sea. Not so with Christ, all the elements of His soul moved as harmoniously as do the planets. He was at one with Himself, as well as with God and the universe.

V. HIS COMMANDING CLAIM TO OUR IMITATION in the crisis of life and in death. (D. Thomas, D. D.)

A watchword

We cannot be long in one stay. A voice ever sounds in our ear, “Arise, let us go hence.” Even when we have conversed on the sweetest themes, or have enjoyed the holiest ordinances, we have not yet crone to our eternal abode; still are we on the march, and the trumpet soundeth, “Arise, let us go hence.” Our Lord was under marching orders, and He knew it: for Him there was no stay upon this earth. Hear how He calls Himself, and all His own, to move on, though bloody sweat and bloody death be in the way.

I. OUR MASTER’S WATCHWORD. “Arise, let us go hence.” By this stirring word

1. He expressed His desire to obey the Father. “As the Father gave Me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.”

2. He indicated His readiness to meet the arch-enemy. “The prince of this word cometh. Arise, let us go hence.”

3. He revealed His practical activity. All through the chapter observe our Lord’s energy. He is ever on the move. “I go. I will come again. I will do it. I will pray. Arise, let us go hence.”

4. He manifested His all-consuming love to us.

II. OUR OWN MOTTO. “Arise, let us go hence.” Ever onward, ever forward, we must go (Exodus 14:15).

1. Out of the world when first called by grace (2 Corinthians 6:17). How clear the call! How prompt should be our obedience! Jesus is without the camp, we go forth unto Him (Hebrews 13:13), We must arouse ourselves to make the separation. “Arise, let us go hence,”

2. Out of forbidden associations, if, as believers, we find ourselves like Lot in Sodom. “Escape for thy life” (Genesis 19:17).

3. Out of present attainments when growing in grace (Philippians 3:13-14).

4. Out of all rejoicing in self. There we must never stop for a single instant. Self-satisfaction should startle us.

5. To work, anywhere for Jesus. We should go away from Christian company and home comforts to win souls (Mark 16:15).

6. To defend the faith where it is most assailed. We should be prepared to quit our quiet to contend with the foe (Jude 1:3).

7. To suffer when the Lord lays affliction upon us (2 Corinthians 12:9).

8. To die when the voice from above calls us home (2 Timothy 4:6).

Conclusion:

1. Oh sinner, where would you go if suddenly summoned?

2. Oh saint, what better could happen to you than to rise and go hence? (C. H. Spurgeon.)
.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "John 14:31". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/john-14.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

But that the world may know,.... Not the wicked and unbelieving world, but the world of God's elect, such as are brought to believe in Christ:

that I love the Father; Christ must needs love the Father, as being of the same nature and essence with him, and as standing in the relation of a son to him; he loved all that the Father loves, and approved of all his purposes, counsels, and determinations, concerning himself and the salvation of his people; and therefore he voluntarily laid down his life for them:

and as the Father gave me commandment, so I do: as a son is obedient to a father, so was Christ in all things obedient to the commands of his heavenly Father, in preaching the Gospel, obeying the law, and suffering death; all which he did and suffered, as the Father gave commandment to him, as man and Mediator: and that it might fully appear how much he loved his Father, and agreed with him in all his designs of grace; how much his will was resigned to his, and what respect he paid to whatever he said or ordered; he said to his disciples,

arise, let us go hence: not from the passover, or the supper, for the passover was not as yet, and the Lord's supper was not instituted; nor in order to go to Mount Olivet, or to the garden, where Judas and his armed men would be to meet him, and lay hold on him, as is generally thought; but from Bethany, where he and his disciples now were, in order to go to Jerusalem and keep the passover, institute the supper, and then surrender himself into the hands of his enemies, and die for the sins of his people; for between this and the sermon in the following chapters, was the Lord's supper celebrated; when Christ having mentioned the fruit of the vine, he should drink new with his disciples in his Father's kingdom, he very pertinently enters upon the discourse concerning the vine and branches, with which the next chapter begins: the phrase is Jewish; so R. Jose and R. Chiyah say to one another as they sat, קום וניהך, "arise, and let us go hence"F6Zohar in Exod. fol. 74. 1. .

Copyright Statement
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 14:31". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/john-14.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

But that the world may know that I love the Father, etc. — The sense must be completed thus: “But to the Prince of the world, though he has nothing in Me, I shall yield Myself up even unto death, that the world may know that I love and obey the Father, whose commandment it is that I give My life a ransom for many.”

Arise, let us go hence — Did they then, at this stage of the discourse, leave the supper room, as some able interpreters conclude? If so, we think our Evangelist would have mentioned it: see John 18:1, which seems clearly to intimate that they then only left the upper room. But what do the words mean if not this? We think it was the dictate of that saying of earlier date, “I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!” - a spontaneous and irrepressible expression of the deep eagerness of His spirit to get into the conflict, and that if, as is likely, it was responded to somewhat too literally by the guests who hung on His lips, in the way of a movement to depart, a wave of His hand, would be enough to show that He had yet more to say ere they broke up; and that disciple, whose pen was dipped in a love to his Master which made their movements of small consequence save when essential to the illustration of His words, would record this little outburst of the Lamb hastening to the slaughter, in the very midst of His lofty discourse; while the effect of it, if any, upon His hearers, as of no consequence, would naturally enough be passed over.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/john-14.html. 1871-8.

John Lightfoot's Commentary on the Gospels

31. But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

[Arise, let us go hence.] These words plainly set out the time and place wherein our Saviour had the discourse which is contained in this fourteenth chapter. The place was Bethany; the time, the very day of the Passover, when they were now about to walk to Jerusalem.

Those things which Christ had discoursed in chapter 13 were said two nights before the Passover; and that at Bethany, where Christ supped at the house of 'Simon the leper.' He abode there the day following, and the night after; and now, when the feast day was come, and it was time for them to be making towards Jerusalem to the Passover, he saith, Arise, let us go hence. What he did or said the day before the Passover, while he stayed at Bethany, the evangelist makes no mention. He only relates what was said in his last farewell before the paschal supper, and upon his departure from Bethany. All that we have recorded in chapters 15, 16, and 17, was discoursed to them after the paschal supper, and after that he had instituted the holy eucharist.

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Lightfoot, John. "Commentary on John 14:31". "John Lightfoot Commentary on the Gospels". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jlc/john-14.html. 1675.

People's New Testament

That the world may know that I love the Father. His obedience in the hour of trial demonstrated that he so loved the Father that he sought not his own, but the Father's will.

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Original work done by Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
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Johnson, Barton W. "Commentary on John 14:31". "People's New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pnt/john-14.html. 1891.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

But that the world may know (αλλ ινα γνωι ο κοσμοςall' hina gnōi ho kosmos). Purpose clause with ιναhina and the second aorist active subjunctive of γινωσκωginōskō Elliptical construction (cf. John 9:3; John 13:18; John 15:25). “But I surrendered myself to death,” etc., before ιναhina

Arise, let us go hence (εγειρεστε αγωμεν εντευτενegeiresthe class="normal greek">εγειρω — agōmen enteuthen). Imperative present middle of αγωμενegeirō and the volitive (hortatory) subjunctive agōmen (the word used in John 11:7, John 11:16) of going to meet death. Apparently the group arose and walked out into the night and the rest of the talk (chs. 15 and 16) and prayer (ch. 17) was in the shadows on the way to Gethsemane.

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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)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/john-14.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

But that the world may know, etc.

The connection in this verse is much disputed. Some explain, Arise, let us go hence, that the world may know that I love the Father, and that even as the Father commanded me so I do. Others, So I do, that the world may know - and even as the Father, etc. Others, again, take the opening phrase as elliptical, supplying either, he cometh, i.e., Satan, in order that the world may know - and that as the Father, etc.; or, I surrender myself to suffering and death that the world may know, etc. In this case, Arise, etc., will form, as in A.V. and Rev., an independent sentence. I incline to adopt this. The phrase ἀλλ ' ἵνα , but in order that, with an ellipsis, is common in John. See John 1:8, John 1:31; John 9:3; John 13:18; John 15:25; 1 John 2:19.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/john-14.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

But I suffer him thus to assault me, 1. Because it is the Father's commission to me, John 10:182. To convince the world of my love to the Father, in being obedient unto death, Philippians 2:8.

Arise, let us go hence — Into the city, to the passover. All that has been related from John 12:31, was done and said on Thursday, without the city. But what follows in the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth chapters, was said in the city, on the very evening of the passover just before he went over the brook Kedron.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on John 14:31". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/john-14.html. 1765.

The Fourfold Gospel

but that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do1. Arise, let us go hence2.

  1. But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. The sorrows and sufferings of Christ would be entered upon of his own free will because by enduring them for our sakes he would please the Father and carry out his commandments, and thus manifest to the world the love which he bore the Father.

  2. Arise, let us go hence. Some think that Jesus then left the room, and that the next three chapters were spoken in the upper room after they had risen from the table and prepared to depart, and that of the Kidron.

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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. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
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J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on John 14:31". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/john-14.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

REFLECTIONS

Almighty Preacher! give me grace to sit at thy feet and hear by faith thy sweet and all-powerful voice in this unequalled sermon of thine, causing all the gracious truths of it to sink deep in my heart. Yes! thou dearest Lord! thou art indeed the way, and the truth, and the life. None can have access to God but by thee. God hath set thee up in thy Mediator-character. And in thee, and by thee, as the life and the light of thy people, thy whole Church hath access by one Spirit to the Father.

Welcome Holy and Eternal God the Spirit, to thy Church! Thou art indeed the very Comforter: for Lord thy great work is consolation. Oh! give me to know thee in thy sweet manifestations, in comforting my poor soul under all discouragements, with the suitableness of Christ. Yea, Lord, in all thy gifts and graces, make known to me the glory, the grace, the love, the infinite tenderness, and compassion, of my God and Savior, in taking of the things of Christ, and shewing them to me. Be it my unceasing happiness, to be brought daily, hourly, under thy quickening, refreshing, soul-reviving influences, that I may be filled with that joy which is unspeakable and full of glory, receiving the end of my faith, even the salvation of my soul.

Father of mercies, and God of all grace! blessed, forever blessed, be that everlasting love, which hath followed up the manifestation of God's dear Son, in the manifestation of God's holy Spirit. Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift!

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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/john-14.html. 1828.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Но чтобы мир знал. Одни, дабы речь казалась законченной, читают все в одном контексте: чтобы мир знал, встаньте, пойдем отсюда. Другие читают раздельно и думают, что здесь утрачена часть текста. Поскольку разница не затрагивает смысла, я оставляю читателю право избрать, что ему больше нравится. Особенно надо отметить следующее: установление Божие здесь ставится выше всего, дабы мы не подумали, будто сатана насильственно предал Христа смерти, и нечто произошло с Ним вопреки божественному совету. Ибо именно Бог назначил Своего Сына Искупителем, и именно Он восхотел, чтобы грехи мира искупились Его смертью. Чтобы это произошло, Бог позволил сатане на малое время быть как бы победителем над Христом. Итак, ради повиновения Отцу Христос не противился сатане и принес Свое послушание как плату за наше оправдание.

Встаньте, пойдем отсюда. Некоторые думают, будто, сказав эти слова, Христос изменил местопребывание, и следующее затем было произнесено Им во время прогулки. Но Иоанн говорит об уходе Христа лишь через несколько стихов. Поэтому лучше думать, что Христос увещевал учеников повиноваться Богу так же, как и Он, являя Собою пример этого послушания. Но вывел Он учеников Своих не в этот самый момент, а немного позднее.

 

 

 

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-14.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

world

kosmos = mankind. (See Scofield "Matthew 4:8").

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Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on John 14:31". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/john-14.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

31 But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

Ver. 31. But that the world may know] Not you only, but all must take notice of my ready obedience to the will of my heavenly Father, even to the suffering of death. Christ’s passion must shine as a perpetual picture in our hearts; therefore it is so accurately described by all the four evangelists, whereas his birth is recorded but by two of them only.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on John 14:31". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/john-14.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

John 14:31

Let us go hence. What was He leaving? Whither was He going? He was going to Gethsemane, to the kiss of the traitor; to the tribunals of Caiaphas, Herod, and Pilate; to His shameful and bitter Cross; to the unknown agonies of His last great conflict with the prince of this world. He had a baptism to be baptized with, and He was straitened until it was accomplished.

I. He was impelled by His supreme sense of duty. No self-interest, no sentiment was ever permitted to interfere with this sense of duty. In all truly great lives the sense of duty is dominant. A man who will not, for duty's sake, do an arduous or unpleasant thing, will neither build up his own moral strength and nobility nor glorify God before men. Had he taken counsel of His own inclinations, He would not have gone from the upper room to Gethsemane, He would not have made men feel the grandeur and sacredness of His Father's service.

II. Another impulse was to produce the impression of His filial affection. Love is the inspiration of all high duty, for duty is more than the mere sense of right, it is the impulse of sympathy; a thing done with an averted face and a reluctant heart is not duty. Duty, therefore, is more than mere measured service, it is the feeling that prompts us to do all that we can do to accomplish God's purposes, to satisfy His heart. Our Lord attached great importance to the impression which His love of duty made upon men. He would have the world to see and know His love, because it would inspire love in them. The only talisman of faith is dutiful love. They who worthily love are held and ruled by love; they whose love is weaker than circumstance do not love at all. Be it ours by ever higher duty, by ever growing love, by ever greater work, to make the world know that we love the Master whom we serve. The one supreme question of every servant of Christ is not, What will most conduce to my ease? What will most please my preference? but, What will most glorify Him?

H. Allon, Christian World Pulpit, vol. viii., p. 72.


References: John 14:31.—Spurgeon, My Sermon Notes: Gospels and Acts, p. 157; Christian World Pulpit, vol. ix., p. 24; Homiletic Magazine, vol. xvi., p. 225. John 15:1—F. D. Maurice, Gospel of St. John, p. 396; C. Stanford, Evening of our Lord's Ministry, p. 133. John 15:1, John 15:2.—Philpot, Thursday Penny Pulpit, vol. iv., p. 409. John 15:1-4.—A. Mackennal, Christian World Pulpit, vol. viii., p.. 235; Church of England Pulpit, vol. vii., p. 41; vol. xvi., p. 184. John 15:1-5.—H. Batchelor, The Incarnation of God, p. 121; D. Fraser, Metaphors of the Gospels, p. 347; Homilist, 2nd series, vol. ii., p. 311; Homiletic Quarterly, vol. i., p. 486. John 15:1-6.—R. C. Trench, Studies in the Gospels, p. 283. John 15:1-8.—Clergyman's Magazine, vol. iii., p. 80; W. Roberts, Christian World Pulpit, vol. x., p. 196. John 15:1-11.—Clergyman's Magazine, vol. ii., p. 220. John 15:1-17.—A. B. Bruce The Training of the Twelve, p. 415.



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Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Sermon Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/john-14.html.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

31.] ‘But my Death is an act of voluntary obedience, that it may be known that I love and obey the Father—that the glory of the Father in and by Me may be manifested.’

The construction is elliptic: supply, ‘But (his power over Me for death will be permitted by Me) that,’ &c. And set a period at ποιῶ, as usually done.

Meyer, alli(205)., and Luthardt, would carry on the sense from ποιῶ, “But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father commanded me, thus I do, arise, let us go hence.” I need only put it to the inner feeling of any who have learned to appreciate the majesty and calmness of our Lord’s discourses, whether a sentence so savouring of theatrical effect is likely to have been spoken by Him. We may notwithstanding safely believe that the ἐγ. ἄγ. ἐντ., without this connexion, does undoubtedly express the holy boldness of the Lord in going to meet that which was to come upon Him, and is for that reason inserted by St. John.

ἐγείρ., ἄγ. ἐντ.] These words imply a movement from the table to depart. Probably the rest of the discourse, and the prayer, ch. 17, were delivered when now all were standing ready to depart. There would be some little pause, in which the preparations for departure would be made. But the place is clearly the same, see ch. John 18:1, ταῦτα εἰπὼν ὁ ἰησοῦς ἐξῆλθεν:—besides which, we can hardly suppose (Grot., &c.) discourses of a character like those in ch. 15, 16 to have been delivered to as many as eleven persons, while walking by the way, and in a time of such publicity as that of the Paschal Feast. Still less is the supposition of Bengel and Beausobre probable,—that ch. 13, 14 happened outside the city, and that between ch. 14 and 15 the paschal meal takes place. Compare also ch. John 13:30, which is decisive against this idea.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on John 14:31". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/john-14.html. 1863-1878.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

John 14:31. That the world may know, etc. (as far as οὕτω ποιῶ), rise (from table), let us go hence! In order to bring the world to the knowledge of my love and my obedience to the Father (“ut mundus desinat mundus esse et patris in me beneplacitum agnoscat salutariter,” Bengel), let us away from here, and go to meet the diabolical power, before which I must now fall according to God’s counsel! The apodosis does not begin so early as καὶ καθώς (Grotius, Kuinoel, Paulus), in which case καί would mean also, and a reflection less appropriate to the mood of deep emotion would result. If a full point be placed after ποιῶ (Bengel, Lachmann, Tischendorf, Ewald), which, however, renders the sentence heavy, and makes what follows to stand too abruptly, then after ἀλλʼ a simple ἔρχεται would have to be supplied. Comp. John 15:25.

After the summons ἐγείρεσθε, κ. τ. λ., we are to think of the company at table as having risen. But Jesus, so full of that which, in view of the separation ever drawing nearer, He desired to impress on the heart of the disciples, and enchained by His love for them, takes up the word anew, and standing, continues to address chap. 15 and 16 to the risen disciples, and then follows the prayer of chap, 17, after which the actual departure, John 18:1, ensues. This view (Knapp, Lücke, Tholuck, Olshausen, Klee, Winer, Lnthardt, Ewald, Brückner, Bleek, following the older expositors, also Gerhard, Calovius, and Maldonatus) appears to be correct from this, that John, without any indication of a change of place, connects John 15:1 immediately with John 14:31; while, that the following discourses, and especially the prayer, were uttered on the way (Ammonius, Hilarius, Beda, Luther, Aretius, Grotius, Wetstein, Lampe, Rosenmüller, Lange, Ebrard), is neither in any way indicated, nor reconcilable with John 18:1, nor psychologically probable. A pure importation, further, is the opinion of Chrysostom, Theophylact, Euth. Zigabenus, Erasmus, and several others, that Christ, John 14:31, went with the disciples to a more secluded and safer place, where He (“sur la pente couverte de vignes, qui descend dans la vallée du Cédron,” Godet) delivered chap. 15, 16, 17; so also is Bengel’s harmonistic device, which Wichelhaus has adopted, that the locality of the discourse from John 13:31(158) to John 14:31 had been outside the city, but that now He set forth to go to Jerusalem for the passover.(159) Others, while De Wette abides by the hypothesis of an hiatus between chap. 14 and 15, the reason of which remains unknown, have sought to make use of the ἐγείρεσθε, ἄγωμεν, Matthew 26:46, Mark 14:42, in spite of the quite different historical connection in Matthew and Mark, in order to charge the author with a clumsy attempt to interweave that reminiscence in his narrative (Strauss, Scholten); in opposition to which Weisse, with equal arbitrariness and injustice, accuses the supposed editor of the Gospel with having placed in juxtaposition, without any link of connection, two Johannean compositions, of which the one closed with John 14:31, and the other began with John 15:1. Baur and Hilgenfeld, indeed, make the synoptic words, divested of their more definite historical justification, stand here only as a sign of pause. The Johannean words, and those in the Synoptics uttered in Gethsemane, have nothing to do with one another; but the apparent incongruity with the present passage speaks, in fact, in favour of the personal testimony of the reporter, before whose eyes the whole scene vividly presented itself. Comp. Bleek’s Beitr. p. 239.

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on John 14:31". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/john-14.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

John 14:31. ἀλλʼ ἵνα, but that) This indicates that in the preceding verse καὶ signifies and indeed [to which ἀλλʼ ἵνα here answers],— γνῷ κόσμος, that the world may know) The world, which is held fast by its prince; by divesting itself of its character, however, that the world may cease to be the world, and may recognise to its salvation that the good pleasure of the Father is in Me.— οὕτως ποιῶ, that so I do) from love; ch. John 15:10, “Even as I have kept My Father’s commandments, and abide in His love.” The full stop is rightly fixed here: nor is the ἀλλʼ ἵνα which precedes an objection to this (Let the ἀλλʼ ἵνα be well considered in ch. John 1:8, “He was not that light, but that he should bear witness of that light;” John 9:3, John 13:18, John 15:25; 1 John 2:19; Mark 14:49, “I was daily with you—and ye took Me not; but that the Scriptures might be fulfilled” [ ἀλλʼ ἵνα πληρωθῶσιν αἱ γραφαί]): in this sense, but, viz. I await the onset of the prince of the world, [that the world may know, etc.] The stopping by a colon is not ancient. See Luther’s Kirchenpostill for the feast of Pentecost. If ἐγείρεσθε, arise, were the Apodosis, such a connection would be a remote one, involving many enunciations or sentiments.(356) Between this going and the world’s coming to know Jesus, how many things intervened!— ἐγείρεσθε, arise) A word expressing alacrity. He Himself strenuously proceeds to the business in hand, rising now already before His disciples.— ἄγωμεν ἐντεῦθεν, let us go hence) into the city, to the Passover. Comp. ch. John 13:1, “Before the feast of the Passover;” John 18:1. The things which heretofore elapsed from ch. John 13:31 [The departure of Judas after receiving the sop], were done and spoken on Thursday outside the city. But the things which follow in chapters 15. and 16. and 17., were spoken in the city on the very evening of the Passover, accompanied with the wonted hymn; namely, immediately before His going forth beyond the brook Cedron (ch. John 18:1). There are then two discourses, which are divided by this abrupt breaking off here (John 14:31). [To the common scope of which, however, as well as to the sense and argument, the intervening Passover-supper most sweetly corresponds.—Harm., p. 507.]

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on John 14:31". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/john-14.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

I die not for my own sin; but being found in fashion as a man, I humbled myself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross, ,{as Philippians 2:8} to let the world know, that I love the Father, and am obedient to him, doing even so as he hath commanded me.

Arise, let us go hence; arise from supper, (after which they were wont sometimes to lengthen out discourse), the supper in Bethany, as some think; but to me it seems more probable (as I said before) to be the passover supper, and the Lord’s supper which immediately followed that; and let us go hence, out of the guest chamber, where the passover was to be administered. So as it is most probable, that the discourses in the two next chapters were as they went along in the way to Mount Olivet. In this discourse our Saviour hath most applied himself to relieve his disciples upon their disturbance for their want of our Saviour’s bodily presence.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on John 14:31". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/john-14.html. 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

But that the world may know; fill out this clause thus: But this conflict with the prince of this world is permitted that the world may know, etc. In it they are to see an example of my obedience to the Father, even unto death.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/john-14.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Expositor's Bible Commentary

XII. THE VINE AND THE BRANCHES.

"Arise, let us go hence. I am the true Vine, and My Father is the Husbandman. Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit, He taketh it away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He cleanseth it, that it may bear more fruit. Already ye are clean because of the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; so neither can ye, except ye abide in Me. I am the Vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same beareth much fruit: for apart from Me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatsoever ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is My Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; and so shall ye be My disciples. Even as the Father hath loved Me, I also have loved you; abide ye in My love. If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Father's commandments, and abide in His love. These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be fulfilled. This is My commandment, that ye love one another, even as I have loved you."-- John 14:31,, John 15:1-12.

Like a friend who cannot tear himself away and has many more last words after he has bid us good-bye, Jesus continues speaking to the disciples while they are selecting and putting on their sandals and girding themselves to face the chill night air. He had to all appearance said all He meant to say. He had indeed closed the conversation with the melancholy words, "Henceforth I will not talk much with you." He had given the signal for breaking up the feast and leaving the house, rising from table Himself and summoning the rest to do the same. But as He saw their reluctance to move, and the alarmed and bewildered expression that hung upon their faces, He could not but renew His efforts to banish their forebodings and impart to them intelligent courage to face separation from Him. All He had said about His spiritual presence with them had fallen short: they could not as yet understand it. They were possessed with the dread of losing Him whose future was their future, and with the success of whose plans all their hopes were bound up. The prospect of losing Him was too dreadful; and though He had assured them He would still be with them, there was an appearance of mystery and unreality about that presence which prevented them from trusting it. They knew they could effect nothing if He left them: their work was done, their hopes blighted.

As Jesus, then, rises, and as they all fondly cluster round Him, and as He recognises once more how much He is to these men, there occurs to His mind an allegory which may help the disciples to understand better the connection they have with Him, and how it is still to be maintained. It has been supposed that this allegory was suggested to Him by some vine trailing round the doorway or by some other visible object, but such outward suggestion is needless. Recognising their fears and difficulties and dependence on Him as they hung upon Him for the last time, what more natural than that He should meet their dependence and remove their fears of real separation by saying, "I am the Vine, ye the branches"? What more natural, when He wished to set vividly before them the importance of the work He was bequeathing to them, and to stimulate them faithfully to carry on what He had begun, than to say, "I am the Vine, ye the fruit-bearing branches: abide in Me, and I in you"?

Doubtless our Lord's introduction of the word "true" or "real"--"I am the true Vine"--implies a comparison with other vines, but not necessarily with any vines then outwardly visible. Much more likely is it that as He saw the dependence of His disciples upon Him, He saw new meaning in the old and familiar idea that Israel was the vine planted by God. He saw that in Himself(17) and His disciples all that had been suggested by this figure was in reality accomplished. God's intention in creating man was fulfilled. It was secured by the life of Christ and by the attachment of men to Him that the purpose of God in creation would bear fruit. That which amply satisfied God was now in actual existence in the person and attractiveness of Christ. Seizing upon the figure of the vine as fully expressing this, Christ fixes it for ever in the mind of His disciples as the symbol of His connection with them, and with a few decisive strokes He gives prominence to the chief characteristics of this connection.

I. The first idea, then, which our Lord wished to present by means of this allegory is, that He and His disciples together form one whole, neither being complete without the other. The vine can bear no fruit if it has no branches; the branches cannot live apart from the vine. Without the branches the stem is a fruitless pole; without the stem the branches wither and die. Stem and branches together constitute one fruit-bearing tree. I, for my part, says Christ, am the Vine; ye are the branches, neither perfect without the other, the two together forming one complete tree, essential to one another as stem and branches.

The significance underlying the figure is obvious, and no more welcome or animating thought could have reached the heart of the disciples as they felt the first tremor of separation from their Lord. Christ, in His own visible person and by His own hands and words, was no longer to extend His kingdom on earth. He was to continue to fulfil God's purpose among men, no longer however in His own person, but through His disciples. They were now to be His branches, the medium through which He could express all the life that was in Him, His love for man, His purpose to lift and save the world. Not with His own lips was He any longer to tell men of holiness and of God, not with His own hand was He to dispense blessing to the needy ones of earth, but His disciples were now to be the sympathetic interpreters of His goodness and the unobstructed channels through which He might still pour out upon men all His loving purpose. As God the Father is a Spirit and needs human hands to do actual deeds of mercy for Him, as He does not Himself in His own separate personality make the bed of the sick poor, but does it only through the intervention of human charity, so can Christ speak no audible word in the ear of the sinner, nor do the actual work required for the help and advancement of men. This He leaves to His disciples, His part being to give them love and perseverance for it, to supply them with all they need as His branches.

This, then, is the last word of encouragement and of quickening our Lord leaves with these men and with us: I leave you to do all for Me; I entrust you with this gravest task of accomplishing in the world all I have prepared for by My life and death. This great end, to attain which I thought fit to leave the glory I had with the Father, and for which I have spent all--this I leave in your hands. It is in this world of men the whole results of the Incarnation are to be found, and it is on you the burden is laid of applying to this world the work I have done. You live for Me. But on the other hand I live for you. "Because I live, ye shall live also." I do not really leave you. If I say, "Abide in Me," I none the less say, "and I in you." It is in you I spend all the Divine energy you have witnessed in my life. It is through you I live. I am the Vine, the life-giving Stem, sustaining and quickening you. Ye are the branches, effecting what I intend, bearing the fruit for the sake of which I have been planted in the world by My Father, the Husbandman.

II. The second idea is that this unity of the tree is formed by unity of life. It is a unity brought about, not by mechanical juxtaposition, but by organic relationship. "As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, but must abide in the vine, so neither can ye except ye abide in Me." A ball of twine or a bag of shot cannot be called a whole. If you cut off a yard of the twine, the part cut off has all the qualities and properties of the remainder, and is perhaps more serviceable apart from the rest than in connection with it. A handful of shot is more serviceable for many purposes than a bagful, and the quantity you take out of the bag retains all the properties it had while in the bag; because there is no common life in the twine or in the shot, making all the particles one whole. But take anything which is a true unity or whole--your body, for example. Different results follow here from separation. Your eye is useless taken from its place in the body. You can lend a friend your knife or your purse, and it may be more serviceable in his hands than in yours; but you cannot lend him your arms or your ears. Apart from yourself, the members of your body are useless, because here there is one common life forming one organic whole.

It is thus in the relation of Christ and His followers. He and they together form one whole, because one common life unites them. "As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, so neither can ye." Why can the branch bear no fruit except it abide in the vine? Because it is a vital unity that makes the tree one. And what is a vital unity between persons? It can be nothing else than a spiritual unity--a unity not of a bodily kind, but inward and of the spirit. In other words, it is a unity of purpose and of resources for attaining that purpose. The branch is one with the tree because it draws its life from the tree and bears the fruit proper to the tree. We are one with Christ when we adopt His purpose in the world as the real governing aim of our life, and when we renew our strength for the fulfilment of that purpose by fellowship with His love for mankind and His eternal purpose to bless men.

We must be content, then, to be branches. We must be content not to stand isolated and grow from a private root of our own. We must utterly renounce selfishness. Successful selfishness is absolutely impossible. The greater the apparent success of selfishness is, the more gigantic will the failure one day appear. An arm severed from the body, a branch lopped off the tree, is the true symbol of the selfish man. He will be left behind as the true progress of mankind proceeds, with no part in the common joy, stranded and dying in cold isolation. We must learn that our true life can only be lived when we recognise that we are parts of a great whole, that we are here not to prosecute any private interest of our own and win a private good for ourselves, but to forward the good that others share in and the cause that is common.

How this unity is formed received no explanation on this occasion. The manner in which men become branches of the true Vine was not touched upon in the allegory. Already the disciples were branches, and no explanation was called for. It may, however, be legitimate to gather a hint from the allegory itself regarding the formation of the living bond between Christ and His people. However ignorant we may be of the propagation of fruit trees and the processes of grafting we can at any rate understand that no mere tying of a branch to a tree, bark to bark, would effect anything save the withering of the branch. The branch, if it is to be fruitful, must form a solid part of the tree, must be grafted so as to become of one structure and life with the stem. It must be cut through, so as to lay bare the whole interior structure of it, and so as to leave open all the vessels that carry the sap; and a similar incision must be made in the stock upon which the branch is to be grafted, so that the cut sap-vessels of the branch may be in contact with the cut sap-vessels of the stock. Such must be our grafting into Christ. It must be a laying bare of our inmost nature to His inmost nature, so that a vital connection may be formed between these two. What we expect to receive by being connected with Christ is the very Spirit which made Him what He was. We expect to receive into the source of conduct in us all that was the source of conduct in Him. We wish to be in such a connection with Him that His principles, sentiments, and aims shall become ours.

On His side Christ has laid bare His deepest feelings and spirit. In His life and in His death He submitted to that severest operation which seemed to be a maiming of Him, but which in point of fact was the necessary preparation for His receiving fruitful branches. He did not hide the true springs of His life under a hard and rough bark; but submitting Himself to the Husbandman's knife, He has suffered us through His wounds to see the real motives and vital spirit of His nature--truth, justice, holiness, fidelity, love. Whatever in this life cut our Lord to the quick, whatever tested most thoroughly the true spring of His conduct, only more clearly showed that deepest within Him and strongest within Him lay holy love. And He was not shy of telling men His love for them: in the public death He died He loudly declared it, opening His nature to the gaze of all. And to this open heart He declined to receive none; as many as the Father gave Him were welcome; He had none of that aversion we feel to admit all and sundry into close relations with us. He at once gives His heart and keeps back nothing to Himself; He invites us into the closest possible connection with Him, with the intention that we should grow to Him and for ever be loved by Him. Whatever real, lasting, and influential connection can be established between two persons, this He wishes to have with us. If it is possible for two persons so to grow together that separation in spirit is for ever impossible, it is nothing short of this Christ seeks.

But when we turn to the cutting of the branch, we see reluctance and vacillation and much to remind us that, in the graft we now speak of, the Husbandman has to deal, not with passive branches which cannot shrink from his knife, but with free and sensitive human beings. The hand of the Father is on us to sever us from the old stock and give us a place in Christ, but we feel it hard to be severed from the root we have grown from and to which we are now so firmly attached. We refuse to see that the old tree is doomed to the axe, or after we have been inserted into Christ we loosen ourselves again and again, so that morning by morning as the Father visits His tree He finds us dangling useless with signs of withering already upon us. But in the end the Vinedresser's patient skill prevails. We submit ourselves to those incisive operations of God's providence or of His gentler but effective word which finally sever us from what we once clung to. We are impelled to lay bare our heart to Christ and seek the deepest and truest and most influential union.

And even after the graft has been achieved the husbandman's care is still needed that the branch may "abide in the vine," and that it may "bring forth more fruit." There are two risks--the branch may be loosened, or it may run to wood and leaves. Care is taken when a graft is made that its permanent participation in the life of the tree be secured. The graft is not only tied to the tree, but the point of juncture is cased in clay or pitch or wax, so as to exclude air, water, or any disturbing influence. Analogous spiritual treatment is certainly requisite if the attachment of the soul to Christ is to become solid, firm, permanent. If the soul and Christ are to be really one, nothing must be allowed to tamper with the attachment. It must be sheltered from all that might rudely impinge upon it and displace the disciple from the attitude towards Christ he has assumed. When the graft and the stock have grown together into one, then the point of attachment will resist any shock; but, while the attachment is recent, care is needed that the juncture be hermetically secluded from adverse influences.

The husbandman's care is also needed that after the branch is grafted it may bring forth fruit increasingly. Stationariness is not to be tolerated. As for fruitlessness, that is out of the question. More fruit each season is looked for, and arranged for by the vigorous prunings of the husbandman. The branch is not left to nature. It is not allowed to run out in every direction, to waste its life in attaining size. Where it seems to be doing grandly and promising success, the knife of the vinedresser ruthlessly cuts down the flourish, and the fine appearance lies withering on the ground. But the vintage justifies the husbandman.

III. This brings us to the third idea of the allegory--that the result aimed at in our connection with Christ is fruit-bearing. The allegory bids us think of God as engaged in the tendance and culture of men with the watchful, fond interest with which the vinedresser tends his plants through every stage of growth and every season of the year, and even when there is nothing to be done gazes on them admiringly and finds still some little attention he can pay them; but all in the hope of fruit. All this interest collapses at once, all this care becomes a foolish waste of time and material, and reflects discredit and ridicule on the vinedresser, if there is no fruit. God has prepared for us in this life a soil than which nothing can be better for the production of the fruit He desires us to yield; He has made it possible for every man to serve a good purpose; He does His part not with reluctance, but, if we may say so, as His chief interest; but all in the expectation of fruit. We do not spend days of labour and nights of anxious thought, we do not lay out all we have at command, on that which is to effect nothing and give no satisfaction to ourselves or any one else; and neither does God. He did not make this world full of men for want of something better to do, as a mere idle pastime. He made it that the earth might yield her increase, that each of us might bring forth fruit. Fruit alone can justify the expense put upon this world. The wisdom, the patience, the love that have guided all things through the slow-moving ages will be justified in the product. And what this product is we already know: it is the attainment of moral perfection by created beings. To this all that has been made and done in the past leads up. "The whole creation groaneth and travaileth,"--for what? "For the manifestation of the sons of God." The lives and acts of good men are the adequate return for all past outlay, the satisfying fruit.

The production of this fruit became a certainty when Christ was planted in the world as a new moral stem. He was sent into the world not to make some magnificent outward display of Divine power, to carry us to some other planet, or alter the conditions of life here. God might have departed from His purpose of filling this earth with holy men, and might have used it for some easier display which for the moment might have seemed more striking. He did not do so. It was human obedience, the fruit of genuine human righteousness, of the love and goodness of men and women, that He was resolved to reap from earth. He was resolved to train men to such a pitch of goodness that in a world contrived to tempt there should be found nothing so alluring, nothing so terrifying, as to turn men from the straight path. He was to produce a race of men who, while still in the body, urged by appetites, assaulted by passions and cravings, with death threatening and life inviting, should prefer all suffering rather than flinch from duty, should prove themselves actually superior to every assault that can be made on virtue, should prove that spirit is greater than matter. And God set Christ in the world to be the living type of human perfection, to attract men by their love for Him to His kind of life, and to furnish them with all needed aid in becoming like Him--that as Christ had kept the Father's commandments, His disciples should keep His commandments, that thus a common understanding, an identity of interest and moral life, should be established between God and man.

Perhaps it is not pressing the figure too hard to remark that the fruit differs from timber in this respect--that it enters into and nourishes the life of man. No doubt in this allegory fruit-bearing primarily and chiefly indicates that God's purpose in creating man is satisfied. The tree He has planted is not barren, but fruitful. But certainly a great distinction between the selfish and the unselfish man, between the man who has private ambitions and the man who labours for the public good, lies in this--that the selfish man seeks to erect a monument of some kind for himself, while the unselfish man spends himself in labours that are not conspicuous, but assist the life of his fellows. An oak carving or a structure of hard wood will last a thousand years and keep in memory the skill of the designer: fruit is eaten and disappears, but it passes into human life, and becomes part of the stream that flows on for ever. The ambitious man longs to execute a monumental work, and does not much regard whether it will be for the good of men or not; a great war will serve his turn, a great book, anything conspicuous. But he who is content to be a branch of the True Vine will not seek the admiration of men, but will strive to introduce a healthy spiritual life into those he can reach, even although in order to do so he must remain obscure and must see his labours absorbed without notice or recognition.

Does the teaching of this allegory, then, accord with the facts of life as we know them? Is it a truth, and a truth we must act upon, that apart from Christ we can do nothing? In what sense and to what extent is association with Christ really necessary to us?

Something may of course be made of life apart from Christ. A man may have much enjoyment and a man may do much good apart from Christ. He may be an inventor, who makes human life easier or safer or fuller of interest. He may be a literary man, who by his writings enlightens, exhilarates, and elevates mankind. He may, with entire ignorance or utter disregard of Christ, toil for his country or for his class or for his cause. But the best uses and ends of human life cannot be attained apart from Christ. Only in Him does the reunion of man with God seem attainable, and only in Him do God and God's aim and work in the world become intelligible. He is as necessary for the spiritual life of men as the sun is for this physical life. We may effect something by candle-light; we may be quite proud of electric light, and think we are getting far towards independence; but what man in his senses will be betrayed by these attainments into thinking we may dispense with the sun? Christ holds the key to all that is most permanent in human endeavour, to all that is deepest and best in human character. Only in Him can we take our place as partners with God in what He is really doing with this world. And only from Him can we draw courage, hopefulness, love to prosecute this work. In Him God does reveal Himself, and in Him the fulness of God is found by us. He is in point of fact the one moral stem apart from whom we are not bearing and cannot bear the fruit God desires.

If, then, we are not bringing forth fruit, it is because there is a flaw in our connection with Christ; if we are conscious that the results of our life and activity are not such results as He designs, and are in no sense traceable to Him, this is because there is something about our adherence to Him that is loose and needs rectification. Christ calls us to Him and makes us sharers in His work; and he who listens to this call and counts it enough to be a branch of this Vine and do His will is upheld by Christ's Spirit, is sweetened by His meekness and love, is purified by His holy and fearless rectitude, is transformed by the dominant will of this Person whom he has received deepest into his soul, and does therefore bring forth, in whatever place in life he holds, the same kind of fruit as Christ Himself would bring forth; it is indeed Christ who brings forth these fruits, Christ at a few steps removed--for every Christian learns, as well as Paul, to say, "Not I, but Christ in me." If, then, the will of Christ is not being fulfilled through us, if there is good that it belongs to us to do, but which remains undone, then the point of juncture with Christ is the point that needs looking to. It is not some unaccountable blight that makes us useless; it is not that we have got the wrong piece of the wall, a situation in which Christ Himself could bear no precious fruit. The Husbandman knew His own meaning when He trained us along that restricted line and nailed us down; He chose the place for us, knowing the quality of fruit He desires us to yield. The reason of our fruitlessness is the simple one, that we are not closely enough attached to Christ.

How, then, is it with ourselves? By examining the results of our lives, would any one be prompted to exclaim, "These are trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord that He may be glorified"? For this examination is made, and made not by one who chances to pass, and who, being a novice in horticulture, might be deceived by a show of leaves or poor fruit, or whose examination might terminate in wonder at the slothfulness or mismanagement of the owner who allowed such trees to cumber his ground; but the examination is made by One who has come for the express purpose of gathering fruit, who knows exactly what has been spent upon us and what might have been made of our opportunities, who has in His own mind a definite idea of the fruit that should be found, and who can tell by a glance whether such fruit actually exists or no. To this infallible Judge of produce what have we to offer? From all our busy engagement in many affairs, from all our thought, what has resulted that we can offer as a satisfactory return for all that has been spent upon us? It is deeds of profitable service such as men of large and loving nature would do that God seeks from us. And He recognises without fail what is love and what only seems so. He infallibly detects the corroding spot of selfishness that rots the whole fair-seeming cluster. He stands undeceivable before us, and takes our lives precisely for what they are worth.

It concerns us to make such inquiries, for fruitless branches cannot be tolerated. The purpose of the tree is fruit. If, then, we would escape all suspicion of our own state and all reproach of fruitlessness, what we have to do is, not so much to find out new rules for conduct, as to strive to renew our hold upon Christ and intelligently to enter into His purposes. "Abide in Him." This is the secret of fruitfulness. All that the branch needs is in the Vine; it does not need to go beyond the Vine for anything. When we feel the life of Christ ebbing from our soul, when we see our leaf fading, when we feel sapless, heartless for Christian duty, reluctant to work for others, to take anything to do with the relief of misery and the repression of vice, there is a remedy for this state, and it is to renew our fellowship with Christ--to allow the mind once again to conceive clearly the worthiness of His aims, to yield the heart once again to the vitalising influence of His love, to turn from the vanities and futilities with which men strive to make life seem important to the reality and substantial worth of the life of Christ. To abide in Christ is to abide by our adoption of His view of the true purpose of human life after testing it by actual experience; it is to abide by our trust in Him as the true Lord of men, and as able to supply us with all that we need to keep His commandments. And thus abiding in Christ we are sustained by Him; for He abides in us, imparts to us, His branches now on earth, the force which is needful to accomplish His purposes.

FOOTNOTES:

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Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Expositor's Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/teb/john-14.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

31.So I do—Namely, undergo the sufferings of the cross. Why? Not because the prince of this world has a right to inflict it; but, first, that the world may know my love for the Father; and, second, because it is the Father’s command.

Arise, let us go hence—The discourse and converse at the table now having been finished, Jesus rises from the table and bids his apostles rise, that they may listen to his solemn valedictory, closed with his high-priestly prayer, preparatory to their going forth in separation and his going forth to his Passion. We suppose that, first, each makes his personal preparation. And then, as the Israelites first partook of the Passover standing, as if preparatory to a going forth, so these apostles reverently stood around the central figure of their Lord to listen to the last converse before the cross. When they next assemble round him it shall be to hear words spoken from his lips clothed with immortality. As they surround his central person at the close of the wine-communion, very suitable is the apologue, with which he opens, of the Vine and its surrounding branches.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/john-14.html. 1874-1909.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

John 14:31. But he cometh that the world may perceive that I love the Father, and that even as the Father gave me commandment so I do. Arise, let us go hence. The difficulty of interpreting these words is undoubtedly very great. The common interpretations of ‘hath nothing in me’—such as, ‘hath no power over me,’ I die freely; ‘hath no ground of accusation against me,’ I am innocent; ‘hath no hold on me,’ I present no point on which he can fasten his attack—are all at variance with the meaning of the verb ‘hath’ in the writings of John. Nor is the difficulty met by the suggestion which removes the full stop after ‘so I do, and connects’ Arise, let us go hence ‘with’ but, thus making the intermediate words (‘he cometh’ not being then, as in our translation, supplied) express the object to be attained by the arising and going. For, in that case, instead of the discourse in chaps. 15 and 16 and the prayer of chap. 17, this chapter ought to have been immediately followed by the last conflict with the world. The true interpretation seems to be that there is an absolute barrier between the ‘prince of this world’ and Jesus. Neither in the Person (in whom is no sin) nor in the work of the Redeemer has he any interest; there is absolutely no point of connection (the expression of the original is strong) between him and these. He has deliberately opposed, denied, and rejected the truth. Therefore he has now nothing to do with it—except in one terrible respect! The following words point out the exception. He ‘comes,’ and the ‘world’ ruled by Him comes, to see that He whom they have rejected is the ‘consecrated One’ of God, the ‘Sent’ of God, the Fulfiller of the Father’s will. But they come to see this only when it is too late; when amazement and horror alone remain for them; when the judgment shall be executed; and when out of their own mouth they shall be condemned. The words in short express, although far more pointedly than elsewhere, the great truth so often stated in Scripture, that those who reject the salvation shall meet the judgment of Jesus, and that, when they meet it, they shall acknowledge that it is just. Blind now, they shall not be always blind; their eyes shall be opened; and to their own shame they shall confess that He whom they rejected was the ‘Beloved’ of the Father, and that His work was the doing of the Father’s will. It is only necessary to add that, while this shall be the fate of this ‘world’ and of its ‘prince,’ the possibility of the individual’s passing from the power of the world into the blessed region of faith in Jesus is always presupposed. The description applies to the world as it hardens itself in impenitence against its rightful Lord, and rushes on its fate.

Hence the startling close of the discourse, ‘Arise, let us go hence.’ Not merely, ‘Let us meanwhile arise, and leave this place that we may go to another where my discourse may be resumed;’ but, ‘Let us go: I have led you to the glorious places of abode in my Father’s house, and I have followed the world to its doom; I have traced the history of mankind to its close; it is over; arise, let us go hence.

It is not easy to determine with certainty at what moment, or even in what place, the discourse which we have been considering was spoken. As to the latter point, indeed, the closing words of the chapter do not leave much doubt. Jesus and His disciples must still have been in the upper chamber where the Supper was instituted. The precise moment is more difficult to fix. Yet, when we turn to Luke 22:35-38, we find there words of Jesus so obviously connected with the topics handled here that we may, with great probability, suppose that both belong to the same period of that night. If so, the discourse in the present chapter was delivered after the Supper was instituted, and before our Lord rose from the table. We may further express our belief that the discourse in chaps, 15 and 16 was spoken in the same place, the difference being that during its delivery, as well as during the intercessory prayer of chap. 17, Jesus and His disciples stood. Not only is chap. John 18:1 (hardly permitting us to think of a ‘going forth’ till ‘after’ He had spoken these things’) favourable to this view, but it is extremely improbable that chaps. 15-17 could have been uttered on the way to Gethsemane. The tone of thought, too, in chaps. 15 and 16 appears to be in harmony with this conception of the circumstances. We shall see in the exposition how much more the idea of apostolic action and suffering comes out in these chapters than it does even in chap. 14. To this corresponded the attitude of rising and standing. The appropriate demands of the moment, therefore, and not any change of intention, led to our Lord’s still continuing in the upper room. He stands there with the solemnised group around Him. ‘I have given you,’ He would say by action as well as word, ‘My commission and My promise; let us be up and doing; there is still deeper meaning in the commission, still greater richness in the promise.’

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/john-14.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

John 14:31. Jesus goes to death not crushed by the machinations of Satan, “but that the world may know that I love the Father and as the Father has commanded me,” , “thus I do,” applies to His whole life, which was throughout ruled by regard to the Father’s commandment, but in the foreground of His thought at present is His departure from the disciples, His death.— , , “arise, let us go hence,” similar to the summons in Matthew 26:46, but the idea of referring so common an expression to a reminiscence of the Synoptic passage is absurd. On the movement made in consequence of the summons, see on John 15:1.

In chapters 15 and 16 Jesus (1) explains the relation He holds to those who continue His work, John 15:1-17; (2) the attitude the world will assume to His followers, John 15:18-25; (3) the conquest of the world by the Spirit, 26–16:11; and (4) adds some last words, encouragements and warnings, John 16:12-33. In this last conversation, which extends from chap. 13 to chap. 16 inclusive, the closing words of chap. 14, , form the best marked division. At this point Jesus and His disciples rose from table. Whether the conversation was continued in the house or after they left it may be doubtful; but probabilities are certainly much in favour of the former alternative. A party of twelve could not conveniently talk together on the street. In John 18:1 we read that when Jesus had uttered the prayer recorded in 17 . This, however, may refer to their leaving the city, not the house. Bengel thinks they may have paused in the courtyard of the house.

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on John 14:31". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/john-14.html. 1897-1910.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

As the Father hath given me commandment, so I do. --- He again speaks of himself, as man. Arise, let us go hence. Yet by chap. xviii. ver. 1. Christ still continued the like instructions, either in the same place, or in the way to Gethsemani. (Witham)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on John 14:31". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/john-14.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

that = in order that. Greek. hina.

I love. The only place where the Lord speaks of loving the Father. Six times the Father"s love to the Son is mentioned, John 3:35; John 10:17; John 16:9; John 17:23, John 17:24, John 17:26. The adjective agapetos, beloved, does not occur in John"s Gospel, but nine times in his Epistles. See App-135.

as = even as.

gave . . . commandment = charged. Compare Matthew 4:6; Matthew 17:9, and see notes on Isa. . John 49:6-9.

even so. Compare John 3:14; John 5:23; John 12:60. Note even as . . . even so.

I do = I am doing, i.e. carrying it out in obedience to the Father"s will. Compare John 4:34; John 5:30; John 6:38-40. Philippians 1:2, Philippians 1:8. Hebrews 5:8,

arise. Implying haste . Greek. egeiro. App-178.

let us go. Compare John 11:15.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 14:31". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/john-14.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. The sense must be completed thus: 'But though the Prince of this world, in plotting My death, hath nothing to fasten on, I am going to yield Myself up a willing Sacrifice, that the world may know that I love the Father, whose commandment it is that I give My life a ransom for many.'

Arise, let us go hence. Did they then, at this stage of the discourse, leave the Supper-room, as some able interpreters judge? If so, we cannot but think that our Evangelist would have mentioned it: on the contrary, in John 18:1, the Evangelist expressly says that not until the concluding prayer was offend did the meeting in the upper-room break up. But if Jesus did not "arise and go hence" when He summoned the Eleven to go with Him, how are we to understand His words? We think they were spoken in the spirit of that earlier saying, "I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how am I straitened until it be accomplished." It was a spontaneous and impressible expression of the deep eagerness of His spirit to get into the conflict. If it was responded to somewhat too literally by those who hung on His blessed lips, in the way of a movement to depart, a wave His hand would be enough to show that He had not quite done. Or it may be that those loving disciples were themselves reluctant to move so soon, and signified their not unwelcome wish that He should prolong His discourse. Be this as it may, that disciple whose pen was dipt in a love to his Master which made His least movement and slightest word during thee last hours seem worthy of record, has reared this little hastening of the Lamb to the slaughter with such artless life-like simplicity, that we seem to be of the party ourselves, and to catch the words rather from the Lips that spake than the pen that recorded them.

Remark: Referring the reader to the general observations, prefixed to this chapter, on the whole of this wonderful portion of the Fourth Gospel, let him recall for a moment the contents of the present chapter. It is complete within itself. For no sooner had the glorious Speaker uttered the last words of it than Ho proposed to "arise and go." All that follows, therefore, is supplementary. Everything essential is here, and here in what a form! The very fragrance of heaven is in these out-pourings of Incarnate Love. Of every verse of it we may say,

`O, it came o'er my ear like the sweet south, That breathes upon a bank of violets,

Stealing and giving odour.' - (SHAKESPEARE)

Look at the varied lights in which Jesus holds forth Himself to the confidence and love and obedience of His disciples. To their fluttering hearts-ready to sink at the prospect of His sufferings, His departure from them, and their own desolation without Him, to say nothing of His cause when left in such incompetent hands-His opening words are, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me." 'Though clouds and darkness are round about Him, and His judgments are a great deep, yet ye believe in God. What time, then, your heart is overwhelmed, believe in Me, and darkness shall become light before you, and crooked things straight.' What a claim is this on the part of Jesus-to be in the Kingdom of Grace precisely as God is in that of Nature and Providence, or rather to be the glorious Divine Administrator of all things whatsoever in the interests and for the purposes of Grace; in the shadow of Whose wings, therefore, all who believe in God are to put their implicit trust, for the purposes of salvation! For He is not sent merely to show men the way to the Father, no, nor merely to prepare that way; but Himself is the Way, and the Truth, and the Life.

We go not from Him, but in Him, to the Father. For He is in the Father, and the Father in Him; the words that He spake are the Father's words, and the works that He did are the Father's works; and He that hath seen Him hath seen the Father, because He is the Incarnate manifestation of the Godhead. But there are other views of Himself, equally transcendent, in which Jesus holds Himself forth here. To what a cheerless distance did He seem to be going away, and when and where should His disciples ever find Him again! ''Tis but to My Father's home,' He replies, 'and in due time it is to be yours too.' In that home there will not only be room for all, but a mansion for each. But it is not ready yet, and He is going to prepare it for them. For them He is going there; for them He is to live there; and, when the last preparations are made, for them He will at length return, to take them to that home of His Father and their Father, that where He is, there they may be also.

The attraction of heaven to those who love Him is, it seems, to be His Own presence there, and the beatific consciousness that they are where He is-language intolerable in a creature but in Him who is the Incarnate, manifested Godhead, supremely worthy, and to His believing people in every age unspeakably reassuring. But again, He had said that in heaven He was to occupy Himself in preparing a place for them; so, a little afterward, He tells them one of the ways in which this was to be done. To "hear prayer" is the exclusive prerogative of Yahweh, and one of the brightest jewel in His crown. But, says Jesus here, "Whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in My name, THAT WILL I DO" - not as interfering with, or robbing God of His glory, but on the contrary - "that the Father may be glorified in the Son: If ye shall ask anything in My name, I WILL DO IT." Further, He is the Life and the Law of His people. Much do we owe to Moses; much to Paul: but never did either say to those who looked up to them, "Because I live, ye shall live also; If ye love Me, keep My commandments; If a man love Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and WE will come unto him, and make OUR abode with him."

Such is Jesus, by His own account; and this is conveyed, not in formal theological statements, but in warm outpourings of the heart, in the immediate prospect of the hour and power of darkness, yet without a trace of that perturbation of spirit which he experienced afterward in the Garden: as if while the Eleven were around Him at the Supper- table their interests had altogether absorbed Him. The tranquillity of heaven reigns throughout this discourse. The bright splendour of a noontide sun is not here, and had been somewhat incongruous at that hour. But the serenity of a matchless sunset is what we find here, which leaves in the devout mind a sublime repose-as if the glorious Speaker had gone from us, saying, "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."

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/john-14.html. 1871-8.

The Bible Study New Testament

31. But the world must know. He acted out this love in the Cross! Let us go. Jesus said all these things while they were still in the “upstairs room.” McGarvey thinks chapters 15–17 contain things which were spoken after they rose from the table and were getting ready to leave, and that John 18:1 shows them leaving the “upstairs room” and crossing the brook Kidron. The Expositor’s Greek Testament thinks this is most probable.

 

 

 

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on John 14:31". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/john-14.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(31) The most probable arrangement of this verse is to omit the period after “so I do,” and to consider all down to this point as governed by “that.” We shall read then, “But, that the world may know that I love the Father, and that as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do, arise, let us go hence.” He has asserted, in the previous verse, the sinlessness which makes His act wholly self-determined. He now expresses the subordination of His own to the Father’s will, and summons the Apostles to rise up with Him from the table, and go forth from the room.

But that the world . . .—The words seem to point back to “the prince of this world” who has just been mentioned. The prince cometh, but it is to a defeat; and the very world over which he has ruled will see in the self-sacrifice of Jesus the love of the Father. That love will reclaim them from the bondage of the oppressor and restore them to the freedom of children.

It is an interesting question which we cannot hope with certainty to solve, whether or not in obedience to the command they went from the room at once. In other words, were the discourse of John 15, 16 and the prayer of John 17, uttered in the room after the summons to depart, or on the way to the garden of Gethsemane? The immediate connection of the opening words of the next chapter with the present verse naturally leads to the opinion that they were spoken in the same place, and, in the absence of any hint of a change, it is safe not to assume any. The words of John 18:1 are probably those which express the act to which the words our Lord has just spoken summon them. But comp. Chronological Harmony of the Gospels, p. xxxv.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/john-14.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.
that the
4:34; 10:18; 12:27; 15:9; 18:11; Psalms 40:8; Matthew 26:39; Philippians 2:8; Hebrews 5:7,8; 10:5-9; 12:2,3
Arise
18:1-4; Matthew 26:46; Luke 12:50 Reciprocal: Genesis 3:15 - thou;  Isaiah 50:5 - GeneralMatthew 26:30 - they went;  John 7:28 - and I;  John 8:29 - for;  John 15:10 - even;  John 17:4 - finished;  Romans 15:3 - Christ;  Galatians 1:4 - according

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on John 14:31". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/john-14.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

31.But that the world may know. Some think that these words should be read as closely connected with the words, Arise, let us go hence, so as to make the sense complete. Others read the former part of the verse separately, and suppose that it breaks off abruptly. As it makes no great difference in regard to the meaning, I leave it to the reader to give a preference to either of these views. What chiefly deserves our attention is, that the decree of God is here placed in the highest rank; that we may not suppose that Christ was dragged to death by the violence of Satan, in such a manner that anything happened contrary to the purpose of God. It was God who appointed his Son to be the Propitiation, and who determined that the sins of the world should be expiated by his death. In order to accomplish this, he permitted Satan, for a short time, to treat him with scorn; as if he had gained a victory over him. Christ, therefore, does not resist Satan, in order that he may obey the decree of his Father, and may thus offer his obedience as the ransom of our righteousness.

Arise, let us go hence. Some think that Christ, after he said these things, changed his place, and that what follows was spoken by him on the road; but as John afterwards adds, that Christ went away with his disciples beyond the brook Kedron, (75) it appears more probable that Christ intended to exhort the disciples to render the same obedience to God, of which they beheld in him so illustrious an example, and not that he led them away at that moment.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 14:31". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-14.html. 1840-57.