Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

John 3:31

"He who comes from above is above all, he who is of the earth is from the earth and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Blindness;   Jesus, the Christ;   John;   Scofield Reference Index - Inspiration;   Thompson Chain Reference - Christ;   Christ's;   Divinity;   Divinity-Humanity;   Heavenly;   John the Baptist;   Origin, Heavenly, of Christ;   Preeminence;   The Topic Concordance - Earth;   God;   Jesus Christ;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Christ Is God;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Earth;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Heaven;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Man from Heaven;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Episcopacy;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Earth;   Faith;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - John the Baptist;   John, the Gospel According to;   Holman Bible Dictionary - John, the Gospel of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Gospels;   John, Gospel of;   John, Theology of;   Mss;   Scribes;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Above and below;   Creator (Christ as);   Dates (2);   Heaven;   Heaven ;   Humanity of Christ;   Obscurity;   Trinity (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Earth;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Earthly;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Earth;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Baptism (Lutheran Doctrine);   Earthly;   Papyrus;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for November 25;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Is above all - This blessed bridegroom, who has descended from heaven, John 3:13, is above all, superior to Moses, the prophets, and me.

He that is of the earth - John himself, who was born in the common way of man.

Speaketh of the earth - Cannot speak of heavenly things as Christ can do; and only represents Divine matters by these earthly ordinances; for the spirit and meaning of which, you must all go to the Messiah himself.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/john-3.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

He that cometh from above - The Messiah, represented as coming down from heaven. See John 3:13; John 6:33; John 8:23. It has been doubted whether the remainder of this chapter contains the words of “John the Baptist” or of “the evangelist.” The former is the more probable opinion, but it is difficult to decide it, and it is of very little consequence.

Is above all - In nature, rank, and authority. “Is superior to all prophets” Hebrews 1:1-2; “to all angels” Hebrews 1:4-14, “and is over all the universe as its sovereign Lord,” Romans 9:5; Ephesians 1:21-22; Colossians 1:15-19; 1 Corinthians 15:25.

He that is of the earth - He who has no higher nature than the human nature. The prophets, apostles, and John were men like others, born in the same way, and sinking, like others, to the dust. See Acts 14:15. Jesus had a nature superior to man, and “ought,” therefore, to be exalted above all.

Is earthly - Is human. Is inferior to him who comes from heaven. Partakes of his origin, which is inferior and corrupt.

Speaketh of the earth - His teaching is inferior to that of him who comes from heaven. It is comparatively obscure and imperfect, not full and clear, like the teaching of him who is from above. This was the case with all the prophets; and even with John the Baptist, as compared with the teaching of Christ.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/john-3.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is of the earth, and of the earth he speaketh: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

A large school of commentators understand this verse and to the end of the chapter, not as the words of John the Baptist, but as reflections of John the apostle, alleging this on the basis of what they call a change in style, a more advanced recognition of the true status of Christ, and a supposed reference to the conversation with Nicodemus. This allegation, in a sense, is not important; for there would have been no impropriety on the author's part: if, under the guidance of the Spirit, this paragraph had been added from his own inspired thoughts. But, in another sense, the question is of great import, since:

Strauss, Weisse, Reuss, and Bretschneider make the supposed PROOF of this Johannine appendix an evidence of inhistoricity throughout the Gospel, and the school of Baur finds in the entire representation simply an artistic endeavor on the part of a second century falsarius to show that John's disciples were absorbed into the catholic church.[26]

Therefore, we shall note the glaring weakness of the reasoning of such scholars, whose allegation of a change of style turns out to be nothing but a change of tense! And, as Westcott said: "The use of the present tense in John 3:32 is not inconsistent with the position of the evangelist."[27] Despite such an admission of Westcott, that scholar favored the position of understanding these words as of the apostle instead of the herald; but his argument is not convincing. For example, he said, "The use of the title `Son' (used singly and absolutely) appears to be alien from the position of the Baptist."[28] This is refuted by the fact that the first person ever on earth to hear Jesus called `Son' (singly and absolutely) was John the Baptist (Matthew 3:17), God Almighty himself being the speaker! It is therefore impossible to view John's use of the single title "Son" as having been anything alien to his position. These and other considerations confirm the conviction of this writer that the words should be understood as belonging to the person to whom they are ascribed in the Gospel. As Hovey said: "(There is) the improbability that the Evangelist would have passed without notice from the record of the Baptist's words to his own testimony concerning Jesus."[29]

He that cometh from above ... These words regarding Jesus contrast with John's admission that he himself was "of the earth," meaning that he did not come from heaven in the sense that Jesus did.

[26] H. R. Reynolds, op. cit., p, 132.

[27] B. F. Westcott, op. cit., p. 60.

[28] Ibid.

[29] Alvah Hovey, op. cit., p. 108.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/john-3.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

He that cometh from above,.... Meaning Christ; not that he brought his human nature with him from heaven, or that that is of a celestial nature; but he came from heaven in his divine person, not by change of place, he being God immense and infinite, but by assumption of human nature; which he took upon him, in order to do in it his Father's will, and the work of our salvation.

Is above all; above John, before whom he was preferred, for he was before him; above the prophets of the Old Testament, and even above Moses, the chief of them; yea, above all the angels in heaven, being God over all, blessed for ever: wherefore all glory is to be given him; no honour is to be envied him, or detracted from him.

He that is of the earth; as John was, and all mankind are, being descended from Adam, who was, made of the dust of the earth; and who dwell in houses of clay, and in earthly tabernacles, which are at last resolved into their original dust:

is earthly; of an earthly nature, frame, temper, and disposition; see John 3:6. Men naturally mind earthly things; and it is owing to the Spirit and grace of God, if they mind and savour spiritual things, or have their affections set on things above, or their conversation in heaven; and even such, at times, find that their souls cleave unto the dust, and are hankering after the things of the earth:

and speaketh of the earth; of earthly things, as in John 3:12; and indeed of heavenly things, in an earthly manner, in a low way, and by similes and comparisons taken from the things of the earth; not being able to speak of celestial things, as in their own nature, and in that sublime way the subject requires: but

he that cometh from heaven is above all; men and angels, in the dignity of his person; and all prophets and teachers, in the excellency of his doctrine, and manner of delivering it: and therefore it is not to be wondered at, that he should be followed as he is; but rather it should seem marvellous, that he has no more followers than he has; in the Apocrypha:

"For like as the ground is given unto the wood, and the sea to his floods: even so they that dwell upon the earth may understand nothing but that which is upon the earth: and he that dwelleth above the heavens may only understand the things that are above the height of the heavens.' (2 Esdras 4:21)

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/john-3.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is x earthly, and y speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

(x) Is nothing else but man, a piece of work made of the slime of the earth.

(y) Is characterized by nothing but corruption, ignorance, dulness, etc.

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/john-3.html. 1599-1645.

John Lightfoot's Commentary on the Gospels

31. He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

[He that is of the earth is earthly.] Mark but the antithesis, and you will not suspect any tautology:

1. He that is of the earth, and He that cometh from heaven. Where the antithesis is not so much between Christ and John, as betwixt Christ and all mankind.

2. He is of the earth, and He is above all. He that is of the earth is only of earthly degree, or rank: and he that is from heaven is above all degree.

3. He speaks of the earth, and what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth. He that is of the earth speaketh earthly things, and what he hath learned upon the earth; but he that is from heaven speaketh those things which he learned in heaven, viz., those things which he hath seen and heard from God. The Baptist seems to allude to the manner of bearing witness, and teaching. In matter of fact there was need of an eyewitness; in matter of doctrine, they delivered what they had heard from their Master.

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Lightfoot, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "John Lightfoot Commentary on the Gospels". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jlc/john-3.html. 1675.

People's New Testament

He that cometh from above. Christ, who is, therefore, above and over John.

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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.
Original work done by Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
Johnson, Barton W. "Commentary on John 3:31". "People's New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pnt/john-3.html. 1891.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Is above all (επανω παντωνepanō pantōn). Ablative case with the compound preposition επανωepanō See the same idea in Romans 9:5. Here we have the comments of Evangelist (John) concerning the last words of John in John 3:30 which place Jesus above himself. He is above all men, not alone above the Baptist. Bernard follows those who treat John 3:31-36 as dislocated and put them after John 3:21 (the interview with Nicodemus), but they suit better here.

Of the earth (εκ της γηςek tēs gēs). John is fond of this use of εκek for origin and source of character as in John 1:46; 1 John 4:5. Jesus is the one that comes out of heaven (ο εκ του ουρανου ερχομενοςho ek tou ouranou erchomenos) as he has shown in 1:1-18. Hence he is “above all.”

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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 3:31". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/john-3.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

He that cometh ( ὁ ἐρχόμενος )

The present participle. The coming regarded as still in process of manifestation. Compare John 6:33.

From above ( ἄνωθεν )

See on John 3:2.

Above ( ἐπάνω )

Supreme.

Of the earth ( ἐκ τῆς γῆς )

Literally, out of the earth; of earthly origin.

Is earthly

The same phrase, out of the earth, is repeated, signifying of earthly nature. On the characteristic phrase εἶναι ἐκ , to be of, see on John 1:46.

Speaketh of the earth

Out of the earth. His words have an earthly source. On λαλεΐ́ , speaketh, see on Matthew 28:18.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/john-3.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

It is not improbable, that what is added, to the end of the chapter, are the words of the evangelist, not the Baptist.

He that is of the earth — A mere man; of earthly original, has a spirit and speech answerable to it.

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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.
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Wesley, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/john-3.html. 1765.

The Fourfold Gospel

He that cometh from above is above all1: he that is of the earth is of the earth, and of the earth he speaketh: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

  1. He that cometh from above is above all, etc. Some think that the testimony of the Baptist closes with John 3:30, and that the rest of the chapter is the comment of the apostle John, but there is certainly no sufficient ground for such a view.

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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.
Bibliographical Information
J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/john-3.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

It has been considered uncertain whether the words which follow, John 3:31-36, are a continuation of the conversation of John the Baptist, or the remarks of St. John, the author of this Gospel. On the one hand, there is nothing to mark a transition; but, then, on the other hand, the John 3:31-36 exhibit strikingly the style and mode of expression characteristic of the evangelist. It is, perhaps, most probable that they are intended to represent the general sentiments of the speaker, but clothed in language by the writer,--and thus exhibiting the peculiarities of his diction.

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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/john-3.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Приходящий свыше. Другим сравнением Иоанн показывает, насколько Христос превосходит иных людей, насколько далеко им до Его славы. Он сравнивает Его с царем и верховным вождем, который, произнося речь с высокого судилища, привлекает слух всех из-за уважения к своей власти. Для себя же Иоанн считает достаточным говорить от самого подножия трона. Христа он называет пришедшим свыше, не только потому, что Он – Бог, но и потому, что в Нем нет ничего, кроме небесного и великого. Во второй части предложения обычный перевод приводит фразу «сущий от земли» только один раз, но греческие кодексы согласны в ином чтении. Я подозреваю, что неученые люди опустили повтор этой фразы, поскольку он казался им излишним. Однако этот повтор означает следующее: Происхождение того, кто от земли, видно сразу. В соответствии со своей природой он принадлежит земному порядку. Поскольку же Христос спустился с неба, Ему Одному принадлежит право говорить свысока. Но можно спросить, разве сам Иоанн не пришел с неба в смысле своего призвания и служения, разве не следует слушать говорящего через него Господа? Кажется, сам Иоанн несправедлив к преподаваемому им небесному учению. Отвечаю: это сказано им в сравнительном, а не в абсолютном смысле. Если рассматривать служителей самих по себе, то они говорят с небес верховной властью, вверенной им Господом. Если же они противопоставляют себя Христу, то сразу обращаются в ничто. Так и апостол в Послании к Евреям (12:25), сравнивая закон с Евангелием, говорит следующее: Если те, кто раздражал возглашавшего от земли, не избежали наказания, то смотрите, как бы вам не раздражать Того, Кто пришел с неба. Христос хочет быть видимым в своих служителях, но так, чтобы Ему одному оставаться Господом, а они довольствовались положением слуг. Кроме того, когда речь заходит о сравнении, Христос хочет так отличаться от Своих служителей, чтобы вся слава воздавалась только Ему.

 

 

 

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-3.html. 1840-57.

Frédéric Louis Godet - Commentary on Selected Books

Ver. 31. "He that cometh from above is above all;he that is of the earth, is of the earth, and speaketh as being of the earth; he that cometh from heaven is above all." With his own earthly nature John contrasts the heavenly origin of Jesus.

῎ανωθεν, from above, is applied here, not to the mission—for that of John is also from above—but to the origin of the person. The all denotes the divine agents in general. All, like John himself, are to be eclipsed by the Messiah. The words three times repeated: of the earth, forcibly express the sphere to which John belongs and beyond which he cannot go. The first time they refer to the origin ( ὤν ἐκ): a mere man; the second, to the mode of existence ( ἐστί): as being of the earth, he remains earthly in his whole manner of being, feeling and thinking (comp. the antithesis John 3:13); the third time, to the teaching ( λαλεῖ): seeing the things of heaven only from beneath, from his earthly dwelling-place. This is true of John, even as a prophet. No doubt, in certain isolated moments and as if through partial openings, he catches a glimpse of the things from above; but even in his exstacies he speaks of God only as an earthly being. So, while inviting to repentance, he does not introduce into the kingdom.

This estimate of John by himself is in harmony with the judgment of Jesus, Matthew 11:11 : "The least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he." And the shaking of his faith, which followed so soon, was not long in demonstrating the justice of it. After having thus put in their proper place, as contrasted with Jesus, all the servants of heaven, John returns to the principal theme: He. If, with some of the Mjj., we reject the last words of this verse: is above all, the words he that cometh from heaven must be made the subject of the verb bears witness, John 3:32 (rejecting the καί). But the fullest and richest reading is also the one most accordant with the spirit of the text. By the last words, John returns to the real subject of this part of his discourse, Jesus, from which he had turned aside, for a moment, in order to make more prominent His superiority by the contrast with himself.

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Godet, Frédéric Louis. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Frédéric Louis Godet - Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsc/john-3.html.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

31 He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

Ver. 31. He that cometh, &c.] Hitherto Christ hath been compared with John. In the rest of the chapter he stands compared, first, with all men; secondly, with the faithful, and infinitely preferred before them all. "He is the chief of ten thousand," Song of Solomon 5:10; or the standard-bearer, which ever are the goodliest.

Is earthy] Terra est, so Augustine renders it, in the same sense as "he is flesh," John 3:6. God will smite this "earth with the rod of his mouth," Isaiah 11:4.

Speaketh of the earth] As ducklings have always their bills in the mud, as swine are ever rooting in the mire; like that fish in the Gospel, either dumb, or nothing but gold in their mouths.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/john-3.html. 1865-1868.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

31.] Many modern critics, beginning with Bengel and Wetstein, and including Lücke, Kuinoel, Olshausen, Tholuck, De Wette. and others, maintain that after John 3:30 we have the words, not of the Baptist, but of the Evangelist. Lücke and De Wette assume that the Evangelist has put his own thoughts into the Baptist’s mouth, or at least mixed them with his words. The reason of this arbitrary proceeding is, ( α) that the sentiments of the following verses seem to them not to be congruous with the time and position of the Baptist. But some of them confess (e.g. Lücke, De Wette) that this very position of the Baptist is to them yet unexplained, and are disposed to question the applicability to their idea of it of very much which is undoubtedly recorded to have been said by him. So that we cannot allow such a view much critical weight, unless it can be first clearly shewn, what were the Baptist’s convictions concerning the Person and Office of our Lord. ( β) That the diction and sentiments of the following verses are so entirely in the style of our Evangelist. But first, I by no means grant this, in the sense which is here meant. It will be seen by the reff. that the Evangelist does not so frequently repeat himself as in most other passages of equal length. And even were this so, the remark made above on John 3:16-21, would apply here also; that the Evangelist’s peculiar style of theological expression was formed on some model; and on what more likely than in the first place the discourses of his Divine Master, and then such sententious and striking testimonies as the present? But there is a weightier reason than these for opposing the above view, and that arises from what modern criticism has been so much given to overlook,—the inner coherence of the discourse itself; in which John explains to his disciples the reason why HE must increase; whereas his own dignity was to be eclipsed before Him. This will be seen below as we proceed.

And there is nothing inconsistent with what the Lord himself says of the Baptist in these verses. He (the Baptist) ever speaks not as a disciple of Jesus, not as within the Kingdom,—but as knowing the blessedness of those who should be within it; as standing by, and hearing the Bridegroom’s voice.

Nor again is there any thing inconsistent with the frame of mind which prompted the question sent by John to our Lord afterwards in the onward waning of his days in prison: see note on Matthew 11:2.

ὁ ἄνωθ. ἐρχ.] This gives us the reason why HE must increase: His power and His words are not from below, temporary, limited; but are divine and inexhaustible; and, John 3:32, His witness is not, like John’s, only of what he has been forewarned to expect, but of that which he has seen and heard. But οὐδείς,—i.e. in reference to the κόσμος into which He is come, the σκοτία in which His light shines,—no one comparatively,—receives His testimony. The state of men’s minds at Jerusalem with regard to Jesus must ere this have been well known to the Baptist. Notice in John 3:31 the collocation of the words as regards emphasis: ὢν ἐκ τῆς γῆς ἐκ τῆς γῆς ἐστιν, κ. ἐκ τῆς γῆς λαλεῖ.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on John 3:31". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/john-3.html. 1863-1878.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

John 3:31. ἄνωθεν, He who is from above) These words, and on to the end of the chapter, the Evangelist seems to have appended, as in congruity with the feeling of the Baptist: comp. notes, ch. John 1:7. Moreover this proposition, He who comes from above is above all, [already] evident by means of those conjugate terms, ἄνωθεν, ἐπάνω, from above, above, is presently made [still more] clear by means of the opposite, he who is of the earth.— ἐπάνω πάντων, above all) in dignity, excellence, and speech. Therefore [He is] also above John. John answers to that expression, all [men come to Him], John 3:26.— ὢκ ἐκ τῆς γῆς, ἐκ τῆς γῆς ἐστί, who is of the earth is earthly) There is a Ploce [a word used first literally, then to express an attribute of it]: the former being understood according to natural birth, the latter according to disposition and state; which latter is followed by a corresponding style of speech. The antithetic proposition forthwith corresponds, consisting also of three members. It is not said, He that cometh from the earth: because He was also on the earth; but it is said, He who cometh from above, who cometh from heaven, to wit, to the earth: for previously He was in heaven.— ἐκ τῆς γῆς ἐστί, is of the earth) The antithesis to this is, is above all.— ἐκ τῆς γῆς λαλεῖ, speaketh of the earth) for which reason the inhabitants of the earth the more readily hear him. The spiritual excellence of a teacher is not to be measured by the pleasure of the audience.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on John 3:31". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/john-3.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

He that cometh from heaven, (for it appeareth by the latter part of the verse, that is the sense of from above), as Christ did, not only in respect of his Divine nature, but being (as to his whole person) clothed with majesty and authority from above, infinitely excelleth any one who is a mere creature: he that is of an earthly original,

speaketh of the earth. Such as is a man’s original, such is his nature, such is his discourse. Though I be sent of God, as John 16:27, and my baptism be from heaven, (so our Saviour himself testifieth, Matthew 21:25), yet my original is of the earth, and my relations and expressions are suitable to a mere man: but he that is from heaven excels all, as in the dignity of his person, so in the sublimity of his knowledge.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on John 3:31". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/john-3.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

(3:31-36) В этих стихах Иоанн Креститель привел пять аргументов превосходства над ним Иисуса: 1) Христос имеет небесное начало (ст. 31); 2) Христос знает истину «из первых рук» (ст. 32); 3) свидетельство Иисуса всегда одобряется Богом (ст. 33); 4) Христос имеет силу Духа Святого (ст. 34); 5) Христос высший потому, что Отец верховной властью даровал Ему этот статус (ст. 35).

(3:31, 32) выше всех Эти стихи соединяют вместе несколько тем всей главы. Из прямого контекста понятно, что Иоанн объяснил, почему Иисус, воплощенное Слово, должен стать большим: Он единственный «свыше» (небесного происхождения), поэтому «выше всех». В греческом термин «выше всех» напоминает ст. 3, где новое рождение «свыше» можно пережить только через веру в Того, Кто «свыше», в отличие от всех других, которые «от земли». Это выражение означает ограниченность. В прямом контексте Иоанн Креститель должен был стать меньшим (ст. 30), потому что он был «от земли» и принадлежал земле. Хотя Иоанн призывал к покаянию и крещению, он не мог открыть небесный план, как мог это сделать Иисус, Богочеловек.

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on John 3:31". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/john-3.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

He that cometh; Christ.

Is above all; in character and work, and ought to be honored above all.

Is of the earth; as are John and all merely human teachers.

Is earthly; inferior in character and teaching, and ought to hold an inferior place.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/john-3.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

31.From above’ of the earth—Between a messenger from heaven and a messenger from the earth there can be no comparison of authority. A messenger from heaven is a concluder of all questions.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/john-3.html. 1874-1909.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

John 3:31. He that cometh from above is above all: he that is out of the earth is out of the earth, and out of the earth he speaketh. The claim of the Baptist’s disciples that to their master should be accorded a higher place than to Jesus, and John’s emphatic testimony to his own lower station, lead the Evangelist to reflect upon the words of Jesus to Nicodemus as decisive of all such questions. ‘He that cometh from above’ and ‘He that cometh out of heaven’ are clearly the same as ‘He that came down out of heaven’ (John 3:13), and all three expressions are designations of Jesus. There is but One who thus ‘cometh from above’ (though many others have received their mission from above), and He therefore is above all. In comparison with Him, every other prophet or teacher has his origin out of the earth; and as is his origin, so is his nature, so is his utterance.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/john-3.html. 1879-90.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

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[BIBLIOGRAPHY]

Qui est de terra, de terra est, Greek: o on ek tes ges, ek tes ges esti, kai ek tes ges lalei. et de terra loquitur.

====================

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on John 3:31". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/john-3.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

from above. Greek anothen, same as "again" in John 3:3. earth. Greek. ge. App-129.

earthly = of the earth.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 3:31". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/john-3.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly. Since the words in this last clause are precisely the same, they had better have been so rendered: 'He that is of the earth is of the earth;' although the sense is correctly given by our translators, namely, that those sprung of the earth, even though divinely commissioned, bear the stamp of earth in their very work: but,

He that cometh from heaven is above all. Here, then, is the reason why He must increase, while all human teachers must decrease. The Master "cometh from above" - descending from His proper element, the region of those "heavenly things" which He came to reveal-and so, although mingling with men and things on the earth, He is not "of the earth," either in Person or Word: The servants, on the contrary, springing of earth, are of the earth, and their testimony, even though divine in authority, partakes necessarily of their own earthiness. So strongly did the Baptist feel this contrast that the last clause just repeats the first. It is impossible for a sharper line of distinction to be drawn between Christ and all human teachers, even when divinely commissioned and speaking by the power of the Holy Spirit. And who does not perceive it? The words of prophets and apostles are undeniable and most precious truth; but in the words of Christ we hear a voice as from the excellent Glory, the Eternal Word making Himself heard in our own flesh.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/john-3.html. 1871-8.

The Bible Study New Testament

31. He who comes from above. The Son of God outranks John and all mankind!

 

 

 

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/john-3.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(31) He that cometh from above.—Comp. Note on John 3:13, and John 8:23. It is expressed in another form in the last clause of the verse.

Is above all—i.e., above all persons, and, as the context limits the sense, specially above all teachers.

He that is of the earth is earthly.—This is the right sense, but the force of the words is lessened by not preserving the three-fold “of the earth” which is in the Greek. “He who is of the earth, of the earth he is, and of the earth he speaketh.” The first marks out the Baptist’s origin, as opposed to Him that cometh from above; the second asserts that the nature is, in accord with this origin, human and limited in faculty, as opposed to that of Him who is above all; the third declares that his teaching is from the standpoint of human nature and limited faculty, embracing indeed divine subjects and receiving divine revelation (John 1:33), but having this treasure in earthen vessels, imperfectly realising it, and imperfectly teaching it (John 3:33). Then the contrast carries him away from this thought of self, in all its weakness, to dwell on the fulness of the teaching of the perfect Teacher, and he emphatically repeats, with the change of words suggested by “of the earth,” what he has before said of it, “He that cometh from heaven is above all.”

This repetition is the answer to the jealousy of his disciples, who wished to place him in a position of rivalry with Jesus. It is the answer to all self-assertion on the part of human teachers.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/john-3.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.
that cometh
13; 6:33; 8:23; Ephesians 1:20,21; 4:8-10
is above
1:15,27,30; 5:21-25; Matthew 28:18; Acts 10:36; Romans 9:5; Ephesians 1:21; Philippians 2:9-11; 1 Peter 3:22; Revelation 19:16
he that is
12; 1 Corinthians 15:47,48; Hebrews 9:1,9,10
he that cometh
6:33,51; 16:27,28
Reciprocal: Isaiah 52:13 - he shall;  Matthew 12:41 - behold;  John 6:38 - I came;  John 7:16 - My;  1 John 4:5 - are

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on John 3:31". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/john-3.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

31.He who cometh from above. By another comparison he shows how widely Christ differs from all the rest, and how far he is above them; for he compares him to a king or distinguished general, who, speaking from his lofty seat, ought to be heard with reverence for his authority, but shows that it is enough for himself to speak from the lowest footstool of Christ. (69) In the second clause the old Latin translation has only once the words, is of the earth; but the Greek manuscripts agree in repeating the words twice. I suspect that ignorant men considered the repetition to be superfluous, and therefore erased it; but the meaning is: he who is of earth gives evidence of his descent, and remains in an earthly rank according to the condition of his nature. He maintains that it is peculiar to Christ alone to speak from above, because he came from heaven

But it may be asked, Did not John also come from heaven, as to his calling and office, and was it not therefore the duty of men to hear the Lord speaking by his mouth? For he appears to do injustice to the heavenly doctrine which he delivers. I reply, this was not said absolutely, but by comparison. If ministers be separately considered, they speak as from heaven, with the highest authority, what God commanded them; but, as soon as they begin to be contrasted with Christ, they must no longer be anything. Thus the Apostle, comparing the Law with the Gospel, says,

Since they escaped not who despised him that spoke on earth, beware lest you despise him who is from heaven,
(
Hebrews 12:25.)

Christ, therefore, wishes to be acknowledged in his ministers, but in such a manner that he may remain the only Lord, and that they may be satisfied with the rank of servants; but especially when a comparison is made, he wishes to be so distinguished that he alone may be exalted.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 3:31". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-3.html. 1840-57.