THE NEW TESTAMENT:
AN UNDERSTANDABLE VERSION
Table of Contents

JOHN



CHAPTER ONE

1) The Word [already] existed in the beginning [of time]. [Note: This is a reference to the preexistence of Jesus. See verse 14]. And the Word was with God and the Word was [what] God [was]. 2) This Word existed with God from the beginning [of time].

3) Everything came into being through this Word, and apart from Him not a single thing came into being. 4) Life existed in Him; and that Life [was what] enlightened mankind [spiritually]. 5) And [His] light continued to shine, [even] in the darkness [of the world], and that darkness did not overcome Him [or, did not fully understand Him].

6) There was a man sent from God whose name was John [the Immerser]. 7) He came to be a witness, so that he might testify concerning that Light, so that all people would believe [in Jesus] through him [i.e., through his testimony. See Acts 19:4]. 8) He himself was not that Light, but came [only] to testify concerning that Light. 9) [Now] the true Light, who enlightens all mankind, was [indeed] coming into the world [i.e., to earth]. 10) [Actually] He was in the world [already], for the world came into being through Him, but the world did not acknowledge Him. 11) [Then] He came to His own [world, while on earth], but His own [people, the Israelites] did not welcome Him. 12) But He gave all those who did welcome Him the opportunity of becoming children of God by believing in His name [i.e., as the Messiah]. 13) [Such people] were born of God, not of blood ties [i.e., from physical descendants], nor of the will of the flesh [i.e., merely from a sexual desire], nor of the will of man [i.e., from a husband=s desire for offspring].

14) [Eventually] this Word became a human being and lived among us [Note: The word Alived@ here refers to pitching a temporary tent]. (And we saw His splendor; such splendor as belongs to the Father=s only Son), full of God=s favor and truth.

15) John gave testimony about Jesus, shouting out, AThis person is the one about whom I said, >He who will come after me ranks above me because He existed before me.=@ 16) For we have all received from His full richness one favor after another. 17) For the Law was given through Moses; [but] God=s favor and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18) No one has ever seen God [i.e., His full splendor], but God, the only conceived [and eventually born Son], who is at the Father=s side, has shown us who He is.

19) And this is the testimony John [the Immerser] gave when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, AWho are you?@ [Note: Levites were men who assisted the priests in the Temple service]. 20) Then he declared openly, without denying it, AI am not the Christ [i.e., God=s specially chosen one].@ 21) So, they asked him, AWho then [are you]? Are you Elijah [i.e., returned from the dead]?@ But he answered, A[No], I am not.@ A[Then], are you the prophet [i.e., Moses. See Deut. 18:15-19]?@ they asked. And he answered, ANo.@ 22) So, they asked him [again], A[Then], who are you? We need to take back an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?@ 23) He replied, AI am the voice of a man who is calling out in the desert, [urging people to] >Make the road for the Lord straight,= as Isaiah the prophet said, [Isa. 40:3].@

24) Now those who were sent [i.e., to question John] were Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion]. 25) They asked him, AWhy do you immerse people then, if you are not the Christ, or Elijah, or the prophet [Moses]?@ 26) So, John answered them, saying, AI am immersing people in water, but there is Someone among you whom you do not recognize. 27) He is the One who will follow my ministry; [and] I do not deserve to untie his sandal lace.@

28) These things happened in Bethany on the east side of the Jordan River where John was immersing people. [Note: This was a different Bethany from the one just outside of Jerusalem].

29) On the next day John [the Immerser] saw Jesus approaching him and said, ALook, [there is] the Lamb of God; He [will] take away the sin of the people of the world. 30) He is the One about whom I said, >A man will come after me who ranks above me, for He existed before me.= 31) And I would not have recognized Him, but I came immersing people in water so that He would become known to the Israelites.@

32) So, John gave his testimony, saying, AI have seen the Holy Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and it remained on Him. 33) And I did not recognize Him, but He [i.e., God], who sent me to immerse in water, said to me, >The one on whom you see the Holy Spirit descending and remaining is the same One who [will] immerse people in the Holy Spirit.= 34) And I have seen and given testimony that this person is the Son of God.@

35) Then on the following day John was standing [there] again with two of his disciples. 36) And when he saw Jesus walking by, he said, ALook, [there is] the Lamb of God!@ 37) [When] the two disciples heard him say that, they began following Jesus. 38) Then Jesus turned and saw them following [Him] and said to them, AWhat are you looking for?@ And they answered Him, ARabbi (which means Teacher), where are you staying?@ 39) Then He said to them, ACome, and you will see.@ So, they went and saw where He was staying and they stayed with Him that day. It was about ten o=clock in the morning. [Note: Hour designations in this book are being calculated by Roman time, but this would have been 4 PM if Jewish time were meant].

40) One of the two men who had listened to John and had become a follower of Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter=s brother. 41) The first thing Andrew did was to find his own brother Simon and say to him, AWe have found the Messiah (which means Christ [i.e., God=s specially chosen one]).@ 42) So, Andrew brought Simon Peter to Jesus. [And when] Jesus saw him, He said [to him], AYou are Simon, the son of John [Note: Peter=s father is called Jonah in Matt. 16:17]; you will be called Cephas (which means Peter [i.e., Aa stone.@ See Matt. 16:18]).@

43) [Then] on the next day He [i.e., Jesus, but some think it refers to Peter or Andrew] decided to travel into Galilee, [and there] He found Philip. Jesus said to Philip, ABecome my follower.@

44) Now Philip was from Bethsaida, Andrew=s and Peter=s home town. [Note: This town was on the northwest shore of Lake Galilee, a few miles from Capernaum]. 45) [Then] Philip found Nathaniel [i.e., the same as Bartholomew. See Matt. 10:3] and said to him, AWe have found Him, the one Moses wrote about in the Law; and the prophets [also wrote about Him]. [He is] Jesus from Nazareth, the [step-] son of Joseph.@ 46) Nathaniel replied to him, ACan anything worthwhile come from Nazareth?@ [Note: Nazareth had a bad reputation and Jewish writings made no prediction of a prophet coming from that area. See John 7:52]. Philip answered him, ACome and see.@

47) [As] Jesus saw Nathaniel coming toward Him, He said [this] about him, ALook, [there is] a true Israelite, a completely honest man!@ 48) Nathaniel asked Jesus, AHow did you know me?@ Jesus answered him, AI saw you when you were under that fig tree, [even] before Philip called you.@ 49) Nathaniel replied to Him, ARabbi [i.e., Teacher], you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.@ 50) Jesus said to him, ADo you believe [in me just] because I told you, >I saw you under that fig tree=? You will see [even] greater things than these [happen].@ 51) Then Jesus said to him, ATruly, truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened up and the angels of God going up [from] and coming down on the Son of man@ [i.e., probably a reference to angels ministering to Jesus= needs. See Matt. 4:6, 11; Luke 22:43].



CHAPTER TWO

1) Then on the third day [i.e., since Jesus= conversation with Nathaniel. See 1:47], a wedding took place in Cana in Galilee. [Note: This was a small town near Nazareth]. Jesus= mother was there 2) and Jesus and His disciples had been invited to it also. 3) Now when they had run out of wine, Jesus= mother said to Him, AThey do not have any more wine [left].@ 4) So, Jesus said to her, A[My dear] woman, what do you want me to do [about it]? My time [i.e., to be revealed to people as the Messiah] has not yet come.@ 5) His mother said to the servants, ADo whatever He tells you to do.@

6) Now there were six clay water jars there, used by the Jews for ceremonial washings [i.e., for hands, utensils, etc.]. Each one held from 17 to 26 gallons. 7) Jesus said to them, AFill the jars with water.@ So, the servants filled them clear full. 8) Then He said to them, ANow pour [some of it] out and take it to the banquet host.@ So, they took some to him, 9) and when the banquet host tasted the water, which had [now] been turned into wine, he did not know where it had come from. (But the servants who had poured out the water knew [full well]). So, the banquet host called the groom 10) and said to him, AEveryone sets out the best wine first, and when people have had plenty to drink, he then sets out the poor quality [wine]. But you have kept the best wine until now.@ [Note: See Barnes Notes (pp. 193-195) and The Gospel of John by Butler (pp. 68-70) for evidence suggesting that this was not intoxicating wine].

11) This was the beginning of Jesus= [miraculous] signs, which He performed in Cana in Galilee. [In doing this] He demonstrated His glorious power and His disciples believed in Him.

12) After this incident, Jesus, His mother, His [half-] brothers and His disciples went down to Capernaum [i.e., located on the north shore of Lake Galilee] and stayed there a few days.

13) Now the Jewish Passover Festival was soon [to be held], so Jesus went up to Jerusalem [to attend it]. 14) There in the Temple [area] He found people selling oxen, sheep and pigeons [i.e., for use as sacrifices]. Also cashiers were sitting there. [Note: These people exchanged foreign coins so visitors to Jerusalem could make purchases and pay taxes]. 15) Then Jesus made a whip out of strands of rope and drove all of the sheep and oxen out of the Temple [area], dumped out the cashiers' money and overturned their tables. 16) He said to those who were selling the pigeons, ATake these things out of here, and quit making my Father=s house [i.e., the Temple] a merchandise mart.@ 17) Then Jesus= disciples remembered that it was written [Psa. 69:9], AEnthusiasm for Your [i.e., God=s] house [i.e., the Temple] will consume me.@

18) So, the Jews asked Him, AWhat [miraculous] sign will you show us, since you are doing these things [i.e., disrupting their merchandising activities]?@ 19) Jesus answered them, A[If you] destroy this Temple, I will raise it up in three days.@ 20) But the Jews said, AIt took forty-six years to build this Temple, and are you going to rebuild it in three days?@ 21) But Jesus was speaking about the Atemple@ of His [physical] body. 22) Therefore, when He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered what He had said and they believed the Scriptures and the words Jesus had spoken.

23) Now when Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people believed in His name [i.e., in Jesus Himself] when they saw the [miraculous] signs He was doing. 24) But Jesus would not trust Himself to them [i.e., to the care of these Jewish leaders] because He knew all men, 25) and He did not need anyone to tell Him about mankind, for He Himself knew what was in the hearts of mankind.



CHAPTER THREE

1) Now there was a Pharisee, a leader of the Jews, named Nicodemus. 2) This man went to Jesus one night and said to Him, ARabbi, we [i.e., speaking of himself and other Jewish leaders] know that you are a Teacher sent from God, for no one could perform these [miraculous] signs that you are doing unless God were with Him.@ 3) Jesus said to him, ATruly, truly, I tell you, a person cannot see the kingdom of God [i.e., enter it. See verse 5], unless he is born from above [Note: The words Afrom above@ are also used in verse 31, but in this place they could also mean Aagain,@ or Aanew@ and refer to the source of a person=s second birth]. 4) Nicodemus said to Him, AHow can a man be born [again] after he is [already] old? He cannot enter his mother=s womb a second time and be born, can he?@ 5) Jesus answered him, ATruly, truly, I tell you, a person cannot enter the kingdom of God unless he is born out of water and the Holy Spirit. 6) Whoever is born from human parents is a human being; and whoever is born from the Holy Spirit is a spiritual being. 7) So, do not be surprised that I have said to you, >You must be born from above.@ [See note on verse 3]. 8) The wind blows wherever it wants to, and you can hear the sound of it, without knowing where it came from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born from the Holy Spirit.@ 9) Then Nicodemus asked Jesus, AHow can these things happen?@ 10) Jesus answered him, AAre you a teacher of the Israelites and [yet] you do not understand these things? 11) Truly, truly, I tell you, we [i.e., Jesus and His disciples] speak about what we know, and testify about what we have seen, but you do not accept our testimony. 12) If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe [it], how will you believe [it] if I tell you about heavenly things? 13) And no one has gone up to heaven except the One who has come down from heaven, [even] the Son of man. {{Most translations do not contain the added words Awho is in heaven@}}. 14) And [just] like Moses lifted up the snake [on the pole] in the wilderness [Num. 21:9], so the Son of man must be lifted up [on the cross] 15) so that whoever believes in Him would have never ending life.@ [Note: Some translations extend Jesus= conversation with Nicodemus through verse 21].

16) For God loved the world [of sinners] so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that every person who believes in Him would not [have to] be destroyed, but have never ending life. 17) For God did not send His Son into the world to be its judge [i.e., to condemn it], but [rather] so that the people of the world could be saved [from condemnation] though Him. 18) The person who believes in Him will not be condemned, but the one who does not believe in Him has already been condemned, because he did not believe in the name of God=s one and only Son. 19) Now this is [how God=s] judgment [works]: The Light [See 1:5-9] has come into the world, but people loved darkness [i.e., sin] rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. 20) For every person who practices evil things hates the light [of truth] and does not come to it, for fear of having his deeds exposed [as sinful]. 21) But the person who does what is [according to the] truth [i.e., good things] comes to the light so that his deeds may be shown to have been produced by God.

22) After this Jesus and His disciples went to the country-[side] of Judea and there they remained and immersed people. 23) John [the Immerser] was also immersing people in Aenon, near Salem [Note: These locations are thought to have been in northeastern Judea, near the Jordan River], because there was a lot of water there; so people were coming to be immersed. 24) Now John had not yet been thrown into prison. 25) [About then] a dispute arose between John=s disciples and a Jew over ceremonial cleansing. 26) These disciples went to John and said to him, ARabbi, look, that man who was with you on the east side of the Jordan River [i.e., Jesus], whom you testified about, is immersing people and everyone is going to him.@ [Note: Actually, it was Jesus= disciples who did the immersing. See 4:2]. 27) John replied to them, AA person cannot receive anything, unless it has been given to him from [God in] heaven. 28) You yourselves can testify that I said, >I am not the Christ [i.e., God=s specially chosen one] but [rather] that I was sent [by God] ahead of Him.= 29) The one who has the bride is the groom; but the best man, who stands up with him and listens to him [take his vows], is very happy when he hears him speak. So, [now] my joy is complete [i.e. over hearing about Jesus= ministry]. 30) He [i.e., Jesus] must increase [in importance and influence], while I must decrease.@

31) The One who comes from above [i.e., Jesus] ranks over all [others]; but the one who is out of the earth [i.e., of human origin] is [merely] an earthly [being] and he speaks in earthly [ways]. [But] the One who comes from heaven [i.e., Jesus] ranks over all [others]. 32) He testifies concerning what He has seen and heard, but no one accepts His testimony. 33) The person who has accepted Jesus= testimony has confirmed this [fact], that God is truthful. 34) For the One whom God has sent [i.e., Jesus] speaks the words of God, for He [i.e., God] does not give the Holy Spirit in a limited quantity [i.e., to Jesus. See next verse]. 35) The Father loves the Son and has given everything into His hands [See Eph. 1:20-22]. 36) The person who believes in the Son has never ending life, but the person who disobeys the Son will not see life [i.e., will not experience never ending life], but [instead], God=s wrath remains on him.



CHAPTER FOUR

1) Therefore, when the Lord [Jesus] knew that the Pharisees were aware of Him making and immersing more disciples than John, 2)-3) He left Judea and returned to Galilee. (Although it was actually His disciples who did the immersing and not Jesus Himself). 4) [Now to get to Galilee] it required that Jesus travel through Samaria [Note: Samaria was the next country north of Judea].

5) So, He arrived at the Samaritan town called Sychar, which was near the piece of property that Jacob had given to his son Joseph. 6) Jacob=s [spring-fed] well was there so Jesus, tired from His [long] journey, sat down beside the well just as He was [i.e., before doing anything else]. It was about six o=clock in the morning [Note: This would have been 12 o'clock noon if Jewish time were meant].

7) [About then] a Samaritan woman came [to the well] to draw water. Jesus said to her, A[Please] give me a drink.@ 8) (Now Jesus= disciples had gone away to town to buy some food). 9) Therefore, the Samaritan woman asked Him, AWhy is it that you, being a Jew, would ask a Samaritan woman [like me] for a drink?@ (For Jews do not have any fellowship with Samaritans). [Note: The reason for this stemmed from longstanding religious, cultural and ethnic prejudices]. 10) Jesus answered her, AIf you [only] knew the [real] gift of God, and who it is that said to you, >[Please], give me a drink,= you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.@ 11) The woman [then] said to Him, ASir, you do not have anything to draw [water] with, and the well is deep. Where will you get that living water? 12) Are you greater than our forefather Jacob, who gave us this well? He himself and his sons and cattle [all] drank from it.@ 13) Jesus answered her, AEveryone who drinks this water will get thirsty again, 14) but whoever drinks the water I give him will never get thirsty [again]. For the water I will give him will become in him [i.e., in his spirit] a spring of water, bubbling up and producing never ending life.@ [See John 7:38]. 15) The woman [then] said to Him, ASir, [please] give me [some of] that water, so that I do not get thirsty [again], or have to come all the way here to draw [water].@ 16) Jesus replied to her, AGo call your husband and [then] come here.@ 17) The woman said to Him, AI do not have a husband.@ Jesus said to her, AYou were right when you said, >I do not have a husband,= 18) because you have had five husbands, and the man you are now living with is not [really] your husband. So, you have told the truth.@ 19) [Then] the woman said to Jesus, ASir, I perceive that you are a prophet. 20) Our forefathers worshiped on this mountain [i.e., Mt. Gerizim, which was visible from where they were sitting]; but you say that Jerusalem is the place where people should worship [God].@ 21) Jesus replied to her, A[My dear] woman, believe me [when I tell you], the time will come when you people will not worship the Father on this mountain or in Jerusalem. 22) You [Samaritans] do not [really] know what you worship; we [Jews] know what we worship because salvation is from the Jews [i.e., through Jewish prophets, Jewish Scriptures and a Jewish Messiah]. 23) But the time will come, and is now [actually] here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit [i.e., from the heart] and truth [i.e., according to God=s revealed will], for these are the people whom the Father seeks to be His worshipers. 24) God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.@ 25) [Then] the woman said to Jesus, AI know that Messiah is coming ([He is] the One who is called Christ). And when He does come, He will tell us everything.@ 26) Jesus replied to her, AI, who am speaking to you, am [the Messiah].@

27) Just about then Jesus= disciples returned [from town], and were surprised to find Him talking with a woman. [Note: It was not customary for a Jewish male to engage a woman in extended conversation in that day, much less a stranger, and certainly not a Samaritan], yet no one said [to Him], AWhat are you looking for?@ or AWhy are you talking to her?@ 28) So, the woman left her water jar and went back into town and told the people [there], 29) ACome [and] see a man who told me everything I ever did. Can this be the Christ?@ 30) [So], the people went out from the town and came to where Jesus was.

31) Meanwhile Jesus= disciples urged Him, saying, ARabbi, [have something to] eat.@ 32) But He said to them, AI [already] have food to eat that you do not know about.@ 33) So, the disciples said to one another, ANo one has brought Him anything to eat [have they]?@ 34) Jesus answered them; AMy food is doing what God, who sent me, wants me to, and accomplishing His work. 35) Are you not [always] saying, >There are still four months before harvest time comes=? Look, I am telling you [disciples], lift up your eyes and look at the fields, that they are white and ripe for harvest [i.e., people are ready to make a spiritual response]. 36) Already the person who is harvesting [the crop] is being paid for his work, and is gathering a crop for never ending life, so that the one planting and the one harvesting [the crop] may rejoice together. 37) So, the saying is true that one person plants and another harvests [the crop]. 38) I sent you [disciples] to harvest [a crop] that you did not work on; other people have done the work and you have reaped the results of their work.@ [Note: This is probably an allusion to the preliminary work of preaching done by John, the Immerser, with results occurring under the preaching of the apostles].

39) Then many Samaritans from Sychar believed in Jesus because of the testimony of the woman, who said, AHe told me everything that I ever did.@ 40) When the Samaritans came to Him, they urged Jesus to stay with them, so He remained there for two days. 41) And many more people believed [in Jesus] because of His [own] words, 42) and they said to the woman, ANow we believe, not just because of what you said, but because we have heard [it] for ourselves and know that this is truly the Savior of the world.@

43) Two days later Jesus left Sychar and went to Galilee. 44) For Jesus Himself testified that a prophet does not receive honor in his own country. [Note: Jesus= reference here to his Aown country@ means Judea, while in Matt., Mark and Luke it refers to Nazareth]. 45) So, when He got to Galilee, the people there welcomed Him, for they had also gone to the [Passover] Festival in Jerusalem and had seen everything He had done there during the festival.

46) Then Jesus returned again to Cana, in Galilee, where He had turned water into wine. There was a government official there whose son was sick at Capernaum [Note: Capernaum was about 20 miles away from Cana]. 47) When he heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went to Him and begged Him to come down [to Capernaum] and heal his son who was about to die. 48) So, Jesus said to him, ANone of you people will believe [in me] unless you see [miraculous] signs and wonders, [will you?].@ 49) The government official replied, ASir, [please] come down [to Capernaum] before my child dies.@ 50) Jesus said to him, AGo on [home]; your son will live.@ And the man believed what Jesus said to him and went [home].

51) While he was going along, his slaves met him and told him that his son was [still] alive. 52) Then he asked them what the [exact] time was when his son began to get better. They said to him, A[It was] yesterday at seven o=clock in the morning that the fever left him.@ [Note: This would have been 1 PM, if Jewish time were meant]. 53) So [then], the father realized that it was at that [exact] hour that Jesus had said to him, AYour son will live.@ So, he and his entire family believed [in Jesus].

54) [Now] this was the second [miraculous] sign that Jesus performed after going from Judea to Galilee.



CHAPTER FIVE

1) After these things Jesus went up to Jerusalem to [attend] a Jewish festival.

2) Now in Jerusalem there was a pool of water near the Sheep Gate [Note: This was a city gate in the north wall]. It had five porticos [i.e., covered open areas along the outside of the Temple]. In the Hebrew language it was called Bethesda. 3) Under these porticos a large number of sick, blind, crippled and deformed people were placed {{A few ancient authorities add Ato wait for the water [of the pool] to become choppy. 4) For an angel of the Lord came down to the pool [from heaven] at certain times and stirred up the water. Then the first person to enter the pool after the water became choppy was healed from whatever disease he had.@}} 5) And a certain man was there who had been sick for thirty-eight years [Note: He was probably a crippled person]. 6) When Jesus saw him lying [there by the pool], and knew that he had been [in that condition] a long time, He said to him, ADo you want to get well?@ 7) The sick man answered Him, ASir, I do not have anyone to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but [just] when I am about to enter [it] someone else goes down [into the water] before me.@ 8) [So], Jesus said to him, AGet up; pick up your cot and walk.@ 9) And immediately the man was made well and picked up his cot and walked.

Now this happened on the Sabbath day. 10) So, the Jews said to the man who was healed, AIt is not permissible for you to pick up your cot because it is the Sabbath day.@ 11) But he replied to them, AThe same man who made me well said to me, >Pick up your cot and walk.=@ 12) [Then] they asked him, AWho is this man who said to you, >Pick up your cot and walk?'" 13) But the man who was healed did not know who it was, because Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.

14) Later on Jesus found the man in the Temple, and said to him, ALook, you have been made well; stop sinning or else something worse [i.e., than the handicap you had] will happen to you.@ 15) [Then] the man left and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.

16) So, for this reason the Jews began persecuting Jesus, because He did these [kinds of] things on the Sabbath day. 17) But Jesus said to them, AMy Father is continuing to work and I am working.@ 18) So, for this reason the Jews looked for more [opportunities] to kill Him, because He not only broke Sabbath day [restrictions], but also He had called God His own Father, [thereby] making Himself equal with God.

19) So, Jesus said to them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, the Son [of God] cannot do anything on His own [i.e., independently of the Father]; but [He does] what He sees His Father doing. For whatever the Father does, the Son also does as well. 20) For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him everything that He Himself does; and He will show Him [even] greater deeds [i.e., more extensive in scope] than these [i.e., than merely healing a crippled man], so that you people will be amazed. 21) For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them [renewed] life [for their bodies ?], even so the Son also gives [renewed] life to [the spirits ?] of whoever He wants to. 22) For the Father does not judge anyone, but He has given [full responsibility for] judging people to His Son, 23) so that everyone will honor the Son just as they honor the Father. The person who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.

24) ATruly, truly, I tell you, the person who listens to my message and believes [in] the One who sent me [i.e., God] has never ending life [i.e., as a hope. See Titus 1:2; 3:7]. He will not be judged [and condemned], but has [already] passed from being [spiritually] dead to being [spiritually] alive. 25) Truly, truly, I tell you, the time is coming, and is now [actually] here, when those who are [spiritually] dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear [i.e., and heed His message] will have [spiritual] life. 26) For [just] as the Father is Himself [the source of] life, in the same way He gave to His Son also [the power] to be [the source of] life. 27) And He gave His Son authority to carry out judgment [upon mankind] because He is the Son of man [Note: The Greek actually says Aa son of man@].

28) ADo not be surprised at this: The time is coming when all those who are in their graves will hear His voice 29) and they will come out [i.e., in the general resurrection on the last day]. Those who had done what was good will be raised [from the dead] to [never ending] life; and those who had done what was evil will be raised [from the dead] to judgment [i.e., to be condemned].

30) AI cannot do anything by my own [authority]. I judge [people] based on what I hear [i.e., from the Father] and my judgment [of them] is just, because I do not look for what I want [to do], but for what He who sent me [i.e., God] wants. 31) If I testify about myself, my testimony is not [considered] true. 32) [But] there is Someone else [i.e., God] who testifies about me, and I know that the testimony He gives about me is true.

33) AYou people have sent to John [the Immerser, for information. See 1:19] and he has given true testimony [about me]. 34) But I do not rely on the testimony of men about me; therefore I tell you these things so you will be saved [i.e., from condemning judgment. See verse 29]. 35) John was the lamp that was burning and glowing and you people were willing to enjoy the light that he projected for awhile. 36) But my testimony is greater than John=s. For the deeds the Father has given me to complete, the very deeds I do, testify about me, that the Father has sent me. 37) And the Father who sent me testifies concerning me. You people have never heard His voice nor seen His form. 38) And you do not keep His message living in your [hearts], for you do not believe [in] the One whom God sent [i.e., in Jesus]. 39) You search through the Scriptures [i.e., the Old Testament], because you think that you will [learn how to] have never ending life by [reading] them. And these Scriptures are what testify concerning me. 40) But you do not want to come to me [i.e., to believe in me. See verse 38] so that you will have [never ending] life.

41) AI do not accept honor from mankind, 42) but I know you [well enough], that you do not have a love for God within you. 43) I have come in my Father=s name [i.e., by His authority] and you do not accept me. If someone else comes in his own name [i.e., by his own authority], you will accept him. 44) How can you believe [in me] when you [offer and] accept honors from one another, but do not try to obtain the honor that comes from the only God?

45) ADo not think that I will accuse you [of wrongdoing] before the Father; Moses, on whom you have set your hope [i.e., you base your acceptance with God on the promises found in Moses= writings], he is the one who accuses you [i.e., in his writings]. 46) For if you believed Moses= [writings], you would [also] believe in me, for he wrote about me. [See Deut. 18:15-19]. 47) But if you do not believe his writings, how do you expect to believe my message?@



CHAPTER SIX

1) After these things happened Jesus went across to the east side of Lake Galilee, also called Lake Tiberias. [Note: This lake also bore a name honoring the Roman Emperor Tiberias]. 2) And a large crowd followed Him because they had seen the [miraculous] signs He had performed on sick people. 3) Then Jesus went up to a high plateau [Note: This place, northeast of Lake Galilee, is called AThe Golan Heights,@ today] and sat down there with His disciples.

4) Now the time for the Jewish Passover Festival was getting close. 5) So Jesus, looking up and seeing a large crowd coming to Him, said to Philip [Note: He was one of the apostles, whose home town was at nearby Bethsaida. See 1:44], AWhere are we going to buy [enough] bread, so that this crowd can eat?@ 6) Now He said this to test Philip, for He [already] knew what He was going to do. 7) Philip answered Him, ANot even two hundred coins= worth of bread would be enough to feed them if everyone ate only a little bit.@ [Note: The amount here indicated was two hundred days of a farm laborer=s pay, or about $14,000 in 1994].

8) [Then] one of His disciples, named Andrew, [who was] Simon Peter=s brother, said to Him, 9) AThere is a little boy here who has five [small] loaves of barley bread and two [probably smoked] fish. But what is this amount for [feeding] so many people?@ 10) Jesus answered, AHave these people recline [on the ground].@ Now there was a lot of grass in that place. So, the men, numbering about five thousand, reclined [on the grass]. 11) Then Jesus took the loaves of bread, and [after] giving thanks [to God], He distributed [pieces] to those who were reclining. He did the same thing with the fish, [giving them] as much as they wanted.

12) And when the people were [all] full, Jesus said to His disciples, AGather up the broken pieces that are left over so that nothing is wasted.@ 13) So, they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with broken pieces left over from the five loaves of barley bread which they had eaten.

14) So, when the people saw the [miraculous] sign that Jesus had performed [i.e., the feeding of the large crowd with such a small amount of food], they said, ATruly, this is the prophet who was to come into the world.@ [Note: This was probably a reference to the promise made in Deut. 18:15-19]. 15) So, [when] Jesus knew that the people were about to come and forcibly take Him and make Him [their] king, He left there again and went to the high plateau [to be] alone [i.e., to pray. See Mark 6:46].

16) Then when evening came, His disciples went down to the lake 17) and got into their boat, and were crossing over [i.e., to the west side of] the lake toward Capernaum. It was dark by now and Jesus had not yet come to them. 18) Then the water became choppy because of a strong wind that had begun to blow. 19) And when the disciples had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the [surface of the] water. They became afraid as Jesus got closer to their boat. 20) But He said to them, ADo not be afraid; it is I.@ 21) So, they eagerly took Him into their boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading [i.e., to Capernaum, on the northwest side of the lake].

22) On the next day the crowd that had stayed on the other [i.e., east] side of the lake realized that there had been only one boat there. They [also] knew that Jesus was not aboard the boat when it left with the disciples in it, but that they had left without Him. 23) (However, meanwhile, some other [small] boats had come from Tiberias [i.e., a small town on the west side of the lake] near where they had eaten bread after the Lord had given thanks). 24) So, when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor His disciples were there [i.e., on the east side] they got into the [small] boats and sailed [west] to Capernaum, looking for Jesus.

25) And when they found Him on the other [i.e., west] side, they said to Him, ARabbi, how did you get here?@ 26) Jesus answered them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, you people are looking for me because you got to eat the loaves of bread and were satisfied and not because you saw [miraculous] signs [See verse 14]. 27) Do not work for the [kind of] food that spoils, but for the kind that lasts until never ending life. The Son of man will give you this [kind of food], for God the Father has placed His seal [of approval] on Him.@ 28) Then the people said to Jesus, AWhat must we do in order to perform the deeds that God requires?@ 29) Jesus answered them, AThis is the deed that God requires: You should believe in Him whom God has sent [i.e., in Jesus].@ 30) And they said to Him, AWhat kind of a [miraculous] sign will you perform so that we can see it and [then] believe [in] you? What [kind of] deed will you perform? 31) Our forefathers ate the [supernatural] >manna= in the desert, as it is written [Neh. 9:15], >He gave them bread from heaven to eat.=@ 32) So Jesus said to them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, it was not [really] Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who is [now] giving you the real bread from heaven. 33) For the bread God gives is the One [see verse 35] who comes down from heaven, and [He] gives [spiritual] life to the world.@ 34) Then they said to Him, ASir, [please] give us this bread all the time.@

35) Jesus replied, AI am the bread who gives [spiritual] life; the person who comes to me will never get hungry [again], and the one who believes in me will never get thirsty [again]. 36) But I have told you this: You have seen me and yet do not believe [in me]. 37) Every person [Note: The Greek says, Aevery thing@] whom the Father gives me will [eventually] come to me [i.e., for salvation]; and I will never turn away that person who comes to me. 38) For I have come down from heaven to do what God, who sent me, wants me to do, not what I want to do. 39) And this is what God, who sent me, wants: That I should not lose any of those persons whom He has given me, but should raise them up [from the dead] on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. 40) And this is what [else] my Father wants: That every person who sees the Son [i.e., with the eye of faith] and believes in Him should have never ending life, and I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day.@

41) So the Jews, [who were assembled in the synagogue. See verse 59] began complaining about Jesus because He had said; AI am the bread that came down from heaven.@ 42) And they said, AIs not this Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, >I have come down from heaven=?@ 43) Jesus answered them, AStop complaining among yourselves. 44) No one can come to me unless the Father, who sent me, attracts him to me. [See verse 65]. And I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day. 45) It is written in the prophets [Isa. 54:13], >And they will all be taught by God.= [So], every person who has heard the Father and learned [from Him] will come to me. 46) [I am] not [saying] that anyone has [ever] seen the Father, except the One who is from God [i.e., Jesus] has seen Him. 47) Truly, truly, I tell you, the person who believes [in me] has never ending life [See note on 5:24]. 48) I am the bread of life. 49) Your forefathers ate the >manna= in the desert and died. 50) [But] this is the bread that has come down from heaven [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself], so that a person who eats of it [i.e., believes in Jesus] will not die [spiritually]. 51) I am the living bread who came down from heaven; if anyone eats this bread, he will live forever. Yes, and the bread that I will give [him] is my physical body, [so] that the world can have [never ending] life.@

52) Then the Jews [who were assembled in the synagogue. See verse 59] began arguing bitterly with one another, saying, AHow can this man give us his physical body to eat?@ 53) So, Jesus answered them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, unless you eat the physical body of the Son of man and drink His blood, you do not have [spiritual] life in yourselves [Note: The references to Abody@ and Ablood@ throughout this section allude to taking Jesus= life and teaching into one=s heart. See verse 56]. 54) The person who eats my physical body and drinks my blood has never ending life [See note on 5:24], and I will raise him up [from the dead] on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. 55) For my physical body is real food and my blood is [the] real drink. 56) The person who eats my physical body and drinks my blood lives in me and I [live] in him. 57) Just as the living Father has sent me, and I have [physical and spiritual] life because of the Father, so the person who eats me will also have [physical? and spiritual] life because of me. 58) This is the bread that came down from heaven [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself]. [It is] not like [the bread] our forefathers ate and [then] died. The person who eats this bread will live forever.@ 59) Jesus said these things in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum.

60) So, when they heard [these things], many of Jesus= disciples said, AThis is difficult teaching. Who can listen to it [i.e., and accept it]?@

61) But Jesus, knowing within Himself that His disciples were complaining about His teaching, said to them, ADoes this [teaching] bother you? 62) Then what if you were to see the Son of man going up [i.e., to heaven] where He was before? 63) It is the Holy Spirit who [Note: The Greek word here is Athat@ instead of Awho@] gives life [i.e., understanding the spiritual nature of Jesus= teaching can produce spiritual life]; the flesh is of no value [i.e., understanding Jesus= teaching only in a physical sense makes it worthless]. The words I have spoken to you are [from the] Holy Spirit and [they give] life. 64) But there are some of you who do not believe [in me].@ For Jesus knew from the beginning which ones would not believe [in Him] and which one would turn Him over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities]. 65) Then He said, AThis is the reason I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father gives him [the opportunity. See verse 44].@

66) Upon [hearing] this, many of Jesus= disciples turned back and refused to accompany Him anymore. [Note: They deserted Jesus physically as well as spiritually]. 67) Therefore, Jesus said to the twelve apostles, ADo you not want to go [with me] either?@ 68) Simon Peter answered Him, ALord, who [else] could we go to? You have the message about never ending life. 69) And we apostles have believed [in you] and know that you are God=s Holy One.@ 70) Jesus answered them, ADid I not choose [all] twelve of you, and one of you is a devil?@ [Note: The word Adevil@ means Aadversary@ or Aopponent@]. 71) Now He was speaking about Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, for he was the one, out of the twelve, who was [soon] going to turn Jesus over [to the Jewish authorities].



CHAPTER SEVEN

1) Then after these things happened, Jesus traveled in Galilee [only], for He did not want to move around in Judea because the Jews [there] were trying to kill Him. 2) Now it was almost time for the Jewish Festival of Tabernacles [Note: This was also called AFestival of Shelters,@ and was one of three principal, annual Jewish festivals and commemorated the occasion of the Israelites living in tents or shelters during their forty year wandering in the desert]. 3) Then Jesus= [half-] brothers said to Him, AYou should leave here and go to Judea so your disciples [there] can see the [supernatural] deeds you are performing. 4) For no one does things secretly if he wants to become known publicly. Since you are doing such things, show yourself to the world.@ 5) For even Jesus= [half-] brothers did not believe in Him [i.e., at that time].

6) So, Jesus said to them, AMy time has not yet come [i.e., to be revealed to the world as its Savior], but it is always your time [i.e., they could go to the festival anytime without rousing opposition]. 7) The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about its deeds, that they are evil. 8) You men go [on] up to the festival, but I am not going up yet [Note: Although Ayet@ appears in only a few manuscripts, it seems to be the proper idea here], because my time has not yet come. [See verse 6]. 9) Then after saying these things, Jesus remained in Galilee [i.e., for awhile longer. See next verse].

10) But after His [half-] brothers had gone up to the Festival, Jesus also went up, but secretly instead of openly. 11) So, the Jews [i.e., their authorities] began searching for Him at the Festival, and were saying, AWhere is he?@

12) And there was much whispering about Him among the crowds. Some were saying, AHe is a good man,@ [but] others said, ANo [he is not], he is [just] deceiving the crowd.@ 13) However, no one said anything about Him openly for fear of the Jews.

14) But when the Festival was about half over, Jesus went up into the Temple and began teaching. 15) Now the Jewish authorities were amazed, saying, AHow can this man know so much, since he has never been educated?@ 16) So, Jesus answered them, AWhat I am teaching is not mine, but [it belongs] to Him who sent me [i.e., to God]. 17) If anyone [really] desires to do what God wants, he will know whether my teaching comes from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority [only]. 18) The person who speaks on his own authority is [just] trying to gain honor for himself. But the One who tries to gain honor from God, who sent Him, is [committed to] truth, and there is nothing false in His heart. 19) Did not Moses give you the Law, and yet not one of you is obeying it? Why are you trying to kill me?@ 20) [Someone from] the crowd answered, AYou have an evil spirit [in you]; who is trying to kill you?@ 21) Jesus answered them, AI performed one [miraculous] deed and you were all amazed by it [i.e., the healing of the crippled man on the Sabbath day. See 5:1-9]. 22) [Now] Moses gave you [the ordinance of] circumcision and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath day. (Although it was [first] required by [your] forefathers and not Moses). 23) If a person is circumcised on a Sabbath day so that the Law of Moses can be observed [properly, then why] are you upset with me for restoring a person to complete health on a Sabbath day? 24) Do not make judgments based [merely] on how things look, but make judgments on how they really are.@

25) Some of the people of Jerusalem said [about Jesus], AIs not this person the one they are trying to kill? 26) And look, he is speaking openly and they are not saying anything to him [about it]. Can it be that the [Jewish] authorities know that he really is the Messiah [i.e., the Christ, God=s specially chosen one]? 27) However, we know where this man comes from, but when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.@

28) As Jesus was teaching in the Temple, He spoke out, and said, AYou people [think you] know who I am and where I come from. I have not come on my own authority, but God, who sent me, is true and you do not know Him. 29) I know Him because I came from Him, for He sent me.@

30) Then they [i.e., the authorities] tried to arrest Jesus, but no one laid a hand on Him because His time had not yet come. 31) But many people in the crowd believed in Him, saying, AWhen the Messiah does come, will he perform more [miraculous] signs than this man has done?@

32) The Pharisees [i.e., a strict sect of the Jewish religion] heard the crowd whispering these things about Him, so the leading priests and Pharisees sent some Temple guards to arrest Him. 33) Therefore, Jesus said, AI will be with you for a little while longer, then I will go to the Father who sent me. 34) You people will be looking for me, but you will not find me; and you will not be able to go where I will be.@ 35) The Jews [i.e., the authorities] were saying among themselves, AWhere will this man go that we will not be able to find him? Will he go where the Jewish people are scattered among the Greeks, and teach the Greeks? 36) What did he mean by saying, >You people will be looking for me, but will not find me; and you will not be able to go where I will be?=@

37) Now on the last and greatest day of the Festival [of Tabernacles], Jesus stood up and spoke out, AIf anyone is thirsty he should come to me for a drink. 38) As the Scripture has recorded [Note: The following is not an exact quotation from the OT, but echoes Isa. 58:11 and Zech. 14:8], >Streams of life-giving water will flow from the person=s heart who believes in me.=@ 39) Now He said this about the Holy Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive [See Acts 2:38]. For [at that time] the Holy Spirit had not yet been given, since Jesus had not yet received splendor [in heaven]. 40) When they heard these words some people in the crowd said, ATruly, this man is the prophet@ [See note on 1:21]. 41) Others said, AHe is the Christ.@ But [still] others said, AWhat [do you mean]? The Christ will not come from Galilee, [will he]? 42) Does not Scripture say [Micah 5:2] that the Christ will come as the descendant of King David, and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?@ 43) So, a division arose among people in the crowd over Jesus. 44) Some of them wanted to arrest Him, but no one [attempted to] lay a hand on Him.

45) So, [when] the Temple guards [See verse 32] returned to the leading priests and Pharisees, they were asked, AWhy did you not bring Jesus here?@ 46) The guards answered, ANo one has ever spoken like this man.@ 47) The Pharisees replied, AAre you being led astray, too? 48) Have any of the authorities or Pharisees believed in him? 49) But this crowd, which does not know the Law of Moses, [and especially its oral traditions], is cursed [by God].@

50) [Now] Nicodemus (being a leading Pharisee, and the one who went to talk to Jesus one night), said to them, 51) ADoes our law pass judgment on a man before first hearing from him and learning what he did?@ 52) They answered him, AAre you from Galilee, too? Search [the Scriptures], and you will see that no prophet will come from Galilee.@ [Note: They were probably referring to Athe prophet@ predicted to come by Moses. Deut. 18:15].

{{Most ancient manuscripts do not contain the section from 7:53 through 8:11, or else place it elsewhere in the book. 53) Then everyone went home,



CHAPTER EIGHT

1) but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. [Note: This was located on a slope just east of Jerusalem]. 2) Then early [the next] morning Jesus went into the Temple again. All the people gathered around Him and He sat down and began teaching them. 3) Some experts in the Law of Moses and Pharisees brought [to Him] a woman who had been caught committing an immoral sexual act and stood her in the middle of the group. 4) They said to Jesus, AThis woman was caught in the very act of sexual immorality. 5) Now in the Law, Moses required us to stone such people [to death], so what do you say [should be done with her]?@ 6) They said this to test Him, in order to have a charge to bring against Him.

But Jesus stooped down and wrote [something] on the ground [i.e., in the dirt] with His finger. 7) But when they continued asking Him [about the woman], He stood up and said to them, AThat person among you who has never sinned should be the first one to throw a stone at her.@ 8) Then He stooped down again and wrote [something else] on the ground.

9) And when they heard [what He had said], they [all] left, one at a time, beginning with the oldest men. So, Jesus was left alone with the woman [still standing] there where she was. 10) So, Jesus stood up [again] and said to her, A[My dear] woman, where are the men? Did not any of them [stay to] condemn you?@ 11) She replied, ANo sir, no one did.@ Then Jesus said, A[Well], I do not condemn you either. Go on your way and from now on, do not sin anymore.@}}

12) So, Jesus spoke to them again [i.e., to the Jewish authorities. See 7:45], saying, AI am the light of the world. The person who becomes my follower will never live in [spiritual] darkness, but have the light of [i.e., for his] life [i.e., followers of Jesus will not live in error and sin but in truth and righteousness].@ 13) The Pharisees then said to Him, A[Since] you are giving testimony about yourself; your testimony is not true.@ 14) Jesus replied to them, AEven if I do give testimony about myself, it is [still] true, because I know where I came from and where I am going. But you people do not know where I came from or where I am going. 15) You pass judgment according to human standards; I do not judge anyone [i.e., the way you do it]. 16) And even if I do pass judgment, my judgment is true because I am not alone, for the Father who sent me is with me. 17) Even in your Law it is written [Deut. 19:15] that the testimony of two people is true. 18) I am one who gives testimony about myself, and the Father who sent me [is the second witness who] testifies about me.@

19) So, the Jewish authorities said to Him, AWhere is your father?@ Jesus answered; AYou people do not know me or my Father. If you [did] know me, you would know my Father also.@ 20) Jesus spoke these words in the treasury [area of the Temple]. And no one arrested Him because His time had not yet come [i.e., to be turned over to the authorities and killed].

21) Jesus again said to them, AI am going away and you will look for me, but you will die [condemned] in your sins. You cannot go where I am going.@ 22) So, the Jews asked [one another], AWill he kill himself, because he said, >You cannot go where I am going=?@ 23) Jesus replied, AYou people are from below [i.e., from the earthly realm]; I am from above [i.e., from the heavenly realm]. You belong to this world; I do not belong to this world. 24) Therefore I said to you that you will die [condemned] in your sins. For unless you believe that I am [the Messiah, who came from above. See verse 23], you will die [condemned] in your sins.@ 25) So, they said to Him, AWho are you?@ Jesus answered, AWhy am I even speaking to you at all? [Note: The Greek words of this difficult passage are not real clear]. 26) I have many things to say about you and [many] judgments to pass on you. However, God, who sent me, is truthful and I am telling the world [only] the things I have heard from Him.@

27) The people [who heard this] did not understand that Jesus was speaking to them about the Father. 28) So, Jesus said, AWhen you have lifted up the Son of man [i.e., to crucify Him], then you will know that I am [the Messiah] and that I do not do anything on my own authority, but I speak [only] those things that the Father has taught me. 29) And God, who sent me, is with me; He has not left me alone, because I always do what is pleasing to Him.@ 30) When He said these things, many people believed in Him.

31) Then Jesus said to those Jews who had believed [in Him], AIf you people continue [obeying] my message, then you are truly my disciples. 32) And you will know what the truth is and the truth will set you free [i.e. from bondage to sin].@ 33) They replied to Him, AWe are descendants of Abraham and have never been slaves to anyone. How can you say, >You will be set free=?@ 34) Jesus answered them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. 35) Now the slave does not remain part of the family forever, [but] the son does. 36) Therefore, if the Son sets you free [from sin], you will be truly free. 37) I know that you people are [all] descendants of Abraham; yet you are trying to kill me because you will not allow my message to affect you. 38) I am telling [you] about what I have seen in my Father=s presence; but you [should] do what you have heard from your father.@ 39) They answered Him, AOur forefather was Abraham.@ Jesus replied to them, AIf you were Abraham=s descendants, you would do the [kinds of] deeds that Abraham did. 40) But instead, you are trying to kill me, a man who has [only] told you the truth, which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this [kind of thing]. 41) You people are doing what your father does.@ They said to Him, AWe were not born illegitimately; the only Father we have is God.@ 42) Jesus replied, AIf God were [truly] your Father you would love me, because I came from God to be here. For I did not come on my own authority, but God sent me. 43) Why do you people not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot [bear to] listen to my message. 44) You belong to your father the devil, and you are [always] wanting to do what your father desires. He was a murderer from the [very] beginning [Note: This is probably a reference to Satan=s influence on Adam, Eve and Cain in the Garden of Eden] and does not stand for the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he only speaks what is part of his nature, because he is a liar and the father of [all] liars. 45) But because I tell [you] the truth, you do not believe me. 46) Which one of you can prove me guilty of sinning? If I tell you the truth, why do you not believe me? 47) The person who belongs to God listens to the message from God. The reason you will not listen to it is because you do not belong to God.@

48) The Jews answered and said to Jesus, AWere we not right in saying that you are a Samaritan [See note on 4:9], and are dominated by an evil spirit?@ 49) Jesus answered; AI am not dominated by an evil spirit. But I give honor to my Father and you people dishonor me. 50) I am not looking for personal honor; but there is One who is looking for it [i.e., God], and He judges people [fairly]. 51) Truly, truly, I tell you, if a person obeys my message, he will never die [i.e., spiritually].@

52) The Jews [i.e., the authorities] replied, ANow we know that you are dominated by an evil spirit. Abraham and the prophets [all] died and [yet] you are saying, >If a person obeys my message, he will never experience death.= 53) Are you greater [i.e., more important] than our forefather Abraham and the prophets, who [all] died? Who do you think you are?@ 54) Jesus answered them, AIf I were to honor myself, that honor would be worthless. [But] it is my Father who honors me [and] you say He is your God. 55) Now you people have not known Him [i.e., to be your Lord], but I know Him. And if I should say, >I do not know Him= I would be a liar like you. But I [do] know Him, and I obey His message. 56) Your forefather Abraham was glad that he could look forward to my day [i.e., by faith he anticipated the coming of the Messiah. See Heb. 11:13ff]. And he saw it [by faith] and was glad.@ 57) So, the Jews said to Him, AYou are not even fifty years old [yet] and have you seen Abraham?@ 58) Jesus answered them, ATruly, truly, I tell you, before Abraham was born, I am.@ [Note: The words AI am@ were probably construed as a reference to being Deity. See Ex. 3:14]. 59) So, they picked up stones to throw at Him, but Jesus hid Himself [or Awas hidden,@ suggesting a miraculous departure] and left the Temple [area].



CHAPTER NINE

1) As Jesus was walking along He saw a man [who had been] blind from birth. 2) His disciples asked Him, ARabbi, did this man sin or was it his parents= [sin] that caused him to be born blind?@ 3) Jesus answered, A[It was] neither his sin nor his parents= [sin], but [it happened] so that the deeds of God could be seen in his life. 4) While it is still daytime we must perform the acts of God, who sent me. Nighttime is coming, when no one can act. 5) While I am in the world I am the light of the world.@

6) After He had said this, He spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva. Then He put the mud on the man=s eyes 7) and said to him, A[Now] go and wash in the pool of Siloam (which means Asent@). So, the man left and washed [in the pool], and [when he] returned, [he was] able to see.

8) Then the neighbors, who had seen the man begging previously, said, AIs not this the man who [used to] sit there and beg?@ 9) Other people said, A[Yes], that is him,@ while [still] others said, ANo, [it is not]; he [just] looks like him.@ The man said, AI am the one, [all right].@ 10) So, they said to him, AHow was your sight restored, then?@ 11) He answered, AThat man called Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes; then He said to me, >Go to Siloam and wash [yourself].= So, I went and washed and my sight was [miraculously] restored.@ 12) Then the people said to the man, AWhere is he?@ AI do not know,@ he replied.

13) [So], they brought the man, who had been blind, to the Pharisees. 14) Now it was the Sabbath day when Jesus had made the mud and restored the man=s sight. 15) So, the Pharisees also asked him again how his sight was restored. He said to them, AHe put mud on my eyes; I washed [myself], and [now] I can see.@ 16) Some of the Pharisees then said, AThe man who did this is not from God, because he does not observe the Sabbath day. But other people said, AHow could a man who is a sinner do such [miraculous] signs?@ And the people were divided among themselves [over the issue]. 17) So, they said to the [former] blind man again, AWhat do you have to say about the man, since [you say] he restored your sight?@ The man replied AHe is a prophet.@ 18) But these Jews [i.e., Pharisees] did not believe that the man had been blind and had received his sight back until they called his parents 19) and asked them, AIs this your son, whom you say was born blind? How [is it] then, that he can now see?@ 20) His parents answered, AWe know this is our son and that he was born blind. 21) But as to how it is that he can now see, we do not know; and we do not know who restored his sight [either]. Ask him, for he is old enough and can answer for himself.@ 22) His parents said these things because they were afraid of the Jewish authorities who had already decided that anyone who confessed Jesus to be the Christ would be expelled from the synagogue. 23) So, his parents said, AHe is old enough, ask him.@

24) So, they called the [former] blind man a second time, and said to him, AGive honor to God [Note: In Jewish idiom this phrase meant ATell the truth.@ See Josh. 7:19]; we know this man is a sinner.@ 25) So, he answered, AI do not know if he is a sinner or not. But one thing I do know; I used to be blind, but now I can see.@ 26) The Pharisees said to him, AWhat did he do to you? How did he restore your sight?@ 27) He answered them, AI just told you, but you would not listen. Why should I tell you again? Do you men want to become his disciples, too?@ 28) Then they began ridiculing him, saying, AYou are his disciple, but we are Moses= disciples. 29) We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this man, we do not [even] know where he came from.@ 30) The man replied, AIs not that strange! You do not know where he came from and yet he restored my sight! [Note: The next sentence may be the beggar stating the Pharisees= argument. See verse 24]. 31) We know that God does not listen to sinners [i.e., when they pray]; but God does listen to the person who reveres Him and does what He wants. 32) It has never been heard of, since the world was created, that anyone has restored sight to a man born blind. 33) Unless this man came from God, he would not be able to do anything [like this].@ 34) They replied to the beggar, AYou were born entirely in sins [i.e., you have been a sinner all your life], and you are [trying] to teach us?@ Then they threw him out [of the synagogue. See verse 22].

35) [When] Jesus heard that they had thrown the beggar out, He found him and asked him, ADo you believe in the Son of man?@ 36) He answered, AWho is he, sir? [Tell me], so I can believe in him.@ 37) Jesus said to him, AYou have seen Him and He is the One who is talking with you.@ 38) And the man said, ALord, I believe.@ And he knelt in front of Jesus [i.e., in reverence].

39) And Jesus said, AI came to this world to judge [it], so that people who can not see [spiritually] will [be able to] see; and those who [think they can] see [spiritually] will become blind.@ 40) Some Pharisees, who were with Jesus, heard [Him say] these things, and replied, AAre we blind, too?@ 41) Jesus said to them, AIf you were [really] blind [i.e., unable to see spiritually], you would not be guilty of sin. But since you claim, >We can see [fine],= you remain guilty of sin.@



CHAPTER TEN

1) ATruly, truly, I tell you, the person who does not enter the sheep corral through the gate, but climbs over another way [i.e., over the fence], is a thief and a robber. [Note: AThief@ suggests quiet subtlety, while Arobber@ suggests open aggression]. 2) But the One [i.e., Jesus is referring to Himself] who enters [it] through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep [Note: ASheep@ in this section refers to Jesus= followers]. 3) The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep respond to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out [of the corral]. 4) After he has let his own [sheep] out, he walks on ahead of them, and they follow him because they recognize his voice. 5) They will not follow a stranger, but will run from him, for they do not recognize the voice of strangers.@ 6) Jesus told them this parable [i.e., a brief story to illustrate his teaching] but they did not understand what it meant.

7) So, Jesus said to them again, ATruly, truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep [i.e., to enter the corral]. 8) All those who came before me were thieves and robbers and the sheep did not listen to them. 9) I am the gate; if anyone enters [the corral] through me, he will be saved [i.e., from condemnation], and will find pasture [i.e., will receive spiritual nurturing]. 10) The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came so that people could have life to its fullest.

11) AI am the good shepherd; and a good shepherd [willingly] dies for the sheep. 12) The person who is [only] a hired hand, and not the shepherd, [and] who does not own the sheep [himself], sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away. So, the wolf attacks the flock and scatters [the sheep]. 13) [The reason] he runs away is because he is a hired hand and does not [really] care about the sheep. 14) I am the good shepherd and I know my sheep [intimately], and they know me [that way], 15) just like the Father knows me [intimately] and I know the Father [that way]. And I [am about to] give up my life for the sheep. 16) I have other sheep [also] which are not [presently] in this corral; I must lead them, too. They will hear my voice and become one flock [i.e., with the others], having one shepherd. [Note: This probably refers to believing Gentiles becoming God=s people, along with the Jews]. 17) The Father loves me because I [am about to] give up my life, so that I can take it back again. 18) No one is taking it away from me, but I am giving it up voluntarily. I have the right to give it up and I have the right to take it back again. I received the commandment to do this from my Father.@

19) The Jews who heard these words became divided again [i.e., over their meaning]. 20) Many of them said, AThis man is dominated by an evil spirit; he is crazy, why listen to him?@ 21) Others said, AThese are not the words of someone dominated by an evil spirit. Can an evil spirit restore sight to a blind person?@

22) During the winter, when the Festival of Dedication was being held in Jerusalem [Note: This was the Jewish festival commemorating the rededication of the Temple in 164 BC after its pagan desecration by Greeks. It is still observed today by Jews as AHanukkah.@], 23) Jesus was walking in the Temple [area] in ASolomon=s Portico@ [Note: This was a large covered area, with rows of columns, on the outside of the Temple enclosure]. 24) Some Jewish [authorities] gathered around Him and asked, AHow long will you hold us in suspense? If you [really] are the Christ, tell us plainly.@ 25) Jesus answered them, AI did tell you, but you would not believe me. The [miraculous] deeds that I am doing in my Father=s name [i.e., by the Father=s authority] testify about me. 26) But you do not believe me, because you are not [part] of my sheep. 27) My sheep listen to my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28) I give them never ending life and they will never be destroyed, and no one will [be able to] steal them out of my hand. 29) What my Father has given me [i.e., my sheep] are greater than everything [else], and no one is able to steal them from the Father=s hand. 30) I and the Father are one.@

31) Then the Jews again picked up stones [intending] to stone Him. 32) Jesus said to them, AI have shown you many good deeds [i.e., miracles], performed through the Father. Which one of them are you stoning me for?@ 33) The Jews answered Him, AWe are not stoning you for a good deed, but for your abusive speech [i.e., about God], and because you are claiming to be God, even though you are [only] a man.@ 34) Jesus replied to them, AIs it not written in your Law [Psa. 82:6], >I said, you people are gods=? 35) If God called those people, to whom His message came, Agods@ (and Scripture cannot be set aside), 36) how can you people say to Him, whom the Father set apart and sent into the world, >You are speaking abusively [i.e., about God],= because I said, >I am the Son of God=? He is the One whom the Father set apart [i.e., for His service] and sent into the world. 37) If I am not doing my Father=s deeds [i.e., miracles], do not believe me. 38) But if I am doing them, even though you do not believe me, believe the deeds. Then you will know and continue to know that the Father is in me, and that I am in the Father.@ 39) [Then] the Jews again tried to arrest Him, but He escaped from their hands.

40) Then Jesus again went across [to the east side of] the Jordan River, to the place where John had first immersed people, and stayed there. 41) Many people came to Him and were saying, AIt is true that John did not perform any [miraculous] signs, but everything he said about this man was true.@ 42) So, many people there believed in Jesus.



CHAPTER ELEVEN

1) Now a certain man named Lazarus, from Bethany, became sick. Bethany was the town where Mary and her sister Martha lived. [See 11:18]. 2) This was the Mary who had poured the perfume on the Lord and wiped His feet with her hair [See Matt. 26:6-13], whose brother Lazarus was sick. 3) So, the sisters sent [someone] to Him, saying, ALook, Lord, the person you love [i.e., your dear friend, Lazarus] is sick.@

4) But when Jesus heard this, He said, AThis illness will not result in [his] death, but was intended to bring honor to God, so that the Son of God would be honored by it.@ 5) Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister [Mary] and [her brother] Lazarus. 6) So, when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was [i.e., on the east side of the Jordan River. See 10:40] for two [more] days.

7) Then, after this, He said to His disciples, ALet us go [back] to Judea again.@ 8) The disciples replied to Him, AThe Jews [there] have just been trying to stone you, and you are going back again?@ 9) Jesus answered, AAre there not twelve hours in a day? [i.e., hours of daylight]. If a person walks during daylight, he will not stumble because he can see [by] the sun=s light. 10) But if he walks at night he [might] stumble, because there is no light [to see by]. [Note: These words have a figurative meaning as Jesus is speaking about His mission in life].

11) After saying these things He said to His disciples, AOur friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going to wake him up.@ 12) But the disciples said to Him, ALord, if he is [only] asleep, he will get well.@ 13) Now Jesus had been talking about Lazarus= death, but the disciples thought He was referring to normal sleep. 14) So, Jesus said plainly, ALazarus is dead. 15) And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there [when he died], so that [now] you will believe [i.e., when you see him miraculously raised up]. But let us go to him [now].@

16) Then Thomas, which means, AThe Twin,@ said to his fellow disciples, ALet us go too, so we can die with Him.@ [i.e., by being stoned to death with Jesus. See 11:8].

17) So, when Jesus arrived, He found out that Lazarus had already been in his grave [i.e., a cave-like tomb] for four days. 18) Now Bethany was close to Jerusalem, [being] fewer than two miles away, 19) and many of Martha and Mary=s Jewish friends had come to comfort them over [the loss of] their brother. 20) So, when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went [out to the edge of town. See verse 30] to meet Him, but Mary [just] sat at home [i.e., probably grieficken]. 21) Then Martha said to Jesus, ALord, if [only] you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22) And I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask Him for.@ 23) Jesus said to her, AYour brother will rise again [from the dead].@ 24) Martha replied to Him, AI know that he will rise again at the resurrection on the last day [i.e., the judgment day].@ 25) Jesus said to her, AI am the resurrection and the life; the person who believes in me will live on, even though he dies [physically]. 26) And whoever goes on living and believing in me, will never die [spiritually]. Do you believe this?@ 27) Martha answered Him, AYes, Lord, I have [already] believed that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.@

28) After saying this, she left and called her sister Mary and said to her privately, AThe Teacher is here and is asking for you.@ 29) And when Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to Jesus. 30) (Now Jesus had not yet arrived in town, but was still at the place where Martha had met Him [i.e., probably on the road near the edge of town]). 31) When Martha=s Jewish friends, who had been comforting her at her house, saw Mary getting up quickly and leaving, they followed her, thinking she was going to the grave site to mourn.

32) So, when Mary arrived at where Jesus was and saw Him, she fell down at His feet and said, ALord, if [only] you had been here, my brother would not have died.@ 33) When Jesus saw her and her Jewish friends, who had come with her, crying, He felt distressed in His spirit and [visibly] troubled [Note: This last word means to shake with emotion, and seems to have been caused by His deep sympathy for these grieving people], 34) and said, AWhere have they laid his body?@ They answered Him, ALord, come and see.@ 35) Jesus shed tears. 36) [Some of] the Jewish friends then said, ALook how [much] he loved him!@ [See verse 3]. 37) But others of them said, ACould not this man, who restored sight to a blind person, have kept Lazarus from dying?@ 38) So, Jesus again felt distressed within Himself [as He] went to the grave site, which was a cave with a stone [slab] across its entrance. 39) Jesus said, AYou people, take the stone away.@ [But] Martha, the dead man=s sister, said to Jesus, ALord, his body is decomposing by now, for he has been dead four days.@ 40) Jesus replied to her, ADid I not tell you that you would see God=s glory [i.e., a miraculous resurrection. See verses 22-27] if you believed?@ 41) So, they removed the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, AFather, thank you for hearing me. [Note: Jesus had already prayed for and been assured of Lazarus= resurrection]. 42) I know that you always hear me, but I said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so they would believe that you sent me.@ 43) And after He had said this, He called out in a loud voice, ALazarus, come out!@ 44) [Immediately] the man who had died came out [of the cave] with his hands and feet [still] wrapped in bandages, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to his Jewish friends, AUnwrap him and let him go.@

45) When many of Mary=s Jewish friends, who had come to console her, saw what Jesus had done, they believed in Him. 46) But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done.

47) So, the leading priests and the Pharisees assembled the Council [Note: This was the Jewish governing body called Athe Sanhedrin@] and said, AWhat should we do, for this man is performing many [miraculous] signs? 48) If we allow him to go on [doing this], everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy our Temple and our nation [i.e., its people].@

49) But a certain member of the Sanhedrin, [named] Caiaphas, who was head priest that year, said to [the rest of] them, AYou do not know what you are talking about. 50) And you are not taking into consideration that it would be profitable to you for one man to die for the people, so that the entire nation would not be destroyed.@ 51) Now he did not say this on his own [i.e., he was not aware of the significance of his words], but since he was head priest that year, he was prophesying [i.e., predicting] that Jesus should die for the nation. 52) And not just [die] for the [Jewish] nation, but also that He would assemble together into one body the children of God who were scattered [throughout the world]. 53) So, from that day onward, the Jewish authorities began plotting [how] to kill Jesus.

54) So, Jesus stopped traveling publicly among the Jews [in Judea], but left there and went to a district near the desert, to a town called Ephraim, where He remained with His disciples. [Note: Ephraim was a small town about 14 miles northeast of Jerusalem, near Samaria].

55) Now the Jewish Passover Festival was to be held soon and many people went up to Jerusalem from the countryside before the [actual] Festival in order to perform the ceremonial purification rituals. 56) So, they began looking for Jesus and saying among themselves, as they gathered in the Temple, AWhat do you think? He will not attend the Festival, will he?@ 57) Now the leading priests and the Pharisees had given orders that if anyone knew where Jesus was, he was to report it, so they could arrest Him.



CHAPTER TWELVE

1) So, six days before the Passover Festival [began], Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus lived. He was the man Jesus [had] raised from the dead. 2) There Mary and Martha prepared a meal for Jesus. Martha served it while Lazarus was among those who reclined at the table with Him. [Note: See Matt. 23:6]. 3) Then Mary took about a pint of expensive, aromatic perfume; [it was] genuine nard, [Note: This was a sweet-smelling herb] and she poured [some of] it on Jesus= feet and wiped them with her hair. The [whole] house was filled with the fragrant scent of the perfume.

4) But one of Jesus= disciples, named Judas Iscariot, who later turned Him over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities], said 5) AWhy was this perfume not sold for a large sum of money [Note: The amount here was equivalent to three hundred days of a farm laborer=s pay, or over $20,000 in 1994] and [then] the money given to poor people?@ 6) Now he did not say this because he cared about poor people, but because he was in charge of the money bag, and being a thief, he used to steal from it. 7) So, Jesus said, ALeave her alone. Let her keep [the rest of] it for [use on] the day of my burial. 8) For you will always have poor people among you, but you will not always have me.@

9) When a large crowd of Jews learned that Jesus was there [in Bethany], they came not only because of Him, but also to see Lazarus whom He had raised from the dead. 10) But the leading priests made plans to kill Lazarus also, 11) for because of him [i.e., his miraculous resurrection], many of the Jews rejected the priests= leadership and believed in Jesus.

12) On the next day a large crowd that had come [to Jerusalem] for the Passover Festival heard that Jesus [also] was coming to Jerusalem. 13) [So], they took branches from palm trees and went out to meet Him, shouting, AHosanna [Note: See Matt. 21:9 for the meaning of this word], may He, the King of Israel, be praised, for He comes in the name [i.e., by the authority] of the Lord!@ 14) Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written [Zech. 9:9], 15) ADo not be afraid, daughter of Zion [i.e., people of Jerusalem]. Look, the King is coming [to you]; He [will be] riding on a donkey=s colt.@

16) His disciples did not understand these things at first, but after Jesus received splendor [in heaven], then they remembered that these things had been written about Him [in Scripture] and that people had done such things to Him.

17) The crowd of people that was with Jesus [and saw Him] when He called Lazarus out of the grave and raised him from the dead, gave testimony [about all this]. 18) But the crowd that went out to meet Jesus [i.e., as He entered Jerusalem] did so because they had heard about Him performing this [miraculous] sign [i.e., of raising Lazarus]. 19) So, the Pharisees were saying among themselves, ALook, you men are getting nowhere [in this situation]. See, the [whole] world has gone after him.@

20) Now there were certain Greeks among those going up to Jerusalem to worship [God] at the [Passover] Festival [Note: These people were God-fearing Gentiles like Cornelius. See Acts 10]. 21) So, these people approached [the apostle] Philip, who was from Bethsaida, in Galilee with the request, ASir, we would like to see Jesus.@ 22) Philip went and told [this to] Andrew [his brother]; [then] Andrew and Philip told [it to] Jesus. 23) Then Jesus said to [all of] them, AThe time has come for the Son of man to be glorified [i.e., by His crucifixion, resurrection and ascension]. 24) Truly, truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat drops into the soil and dies, it remains a single grain, but if it dies, [then] it will produce many grains. 25) The person who loves his [earthly] life will [eventually] lose it [forever], but the person who hates his life in this world will retain never ending life. 26) If any person wants to serve me, he should become my follower; and wherever I am, my servant will be there also. If any person serves me, the Father will honor him.

27) ANow my heart is distressed; and what shall I say [i.e., to God]? >Father, bring me safely through this time.= But, this is the reason I came [to earth]; to [go through] such a time. 28) >Father, honor your name [in all this].=@

Then a voice came out of heaven, saying, AI have honored it, and I will honor it again.@ 29) The crowd that was standing around heard this [i.e., the sound of the Father=s voice], but said it was thunder. Others said, AAn angel spoke to Him [i.e., Jesus].@ 30) Jesus said to them, AThis voice did not speak for my sake, but for yours. 31) Judgment is now coming to this world; the prince of this world [i.e., Satan] will now be driven out. 32) And if I am lifted up from the earth [i.e., on the cross], I will draw [i.e., attract] all people to me.@ 33) Now He said this to indicate the kind of death He was about to experience [i.e., of being lifted up on a cross].

34) Then the crowd replied to Him, AWe have heard from [the writings of] the Law of Moses that the Christ will live forever; so how can you say, >The son of man must be lifted up [i.e., to die]?= Who is this son of man?@ 35) So, Jesus said to them, AThe Light will be among you for only a little while [longer]. Walk around while you [still] have the Light [with you], before darkness surrounds you. For the person who walks around in darkness does not know where he is going. 36) [So], believe in the Light [i.e., Jesus is speaking of Himself] while you [still] have the Light [with you], so that you can become enlightened people.@ After Jesus said these things, He left there and hid Himself from them.

37) But [even] though Jesus had performed so many [miraculous] signs in front of the people, still they did not believe in Him. 38) This was so that these words, which Isaiah the prophet had spoken, would be fulfilled [Isa. 53:1], ALord, who has believed our message? And who has the Lord=s power been shown to?@ 39) They were not able to believe because Isaiah also said [Isa. 6:10], 40) AGod has blinded their eyes [of understanding] and closed their minds. If He had not done so, they would [be able to] see with their eyes and understand with their minds and turn [to God] so He could heal them [spiritually].@ 41) Isaiah had said these things because he saw the [coming] glory of Jesus, and [so] was speaking about Him.

42) However, even many [Jewish] leaders believed in Him, but did not admit it, for fear of being expelled from the synagogue. 43) For they loved the honor they received from people more than the honor they [could] receive from God.

44) Then Jesus spoke out in a loud voice, AThe person who believes in me, does not [only] believe in me, but [also] in Him who sent me [i.e., God]. 45) And the person who sees me, sees Him who sent me [also]. 46) I have come into the world to be a light [to it], so that whoever believes in me would not have to remain in [spiritual] darkness. 47) And if any person hears my message and does not obey it, I will not judge him [now], for I did not come into the world to judge it, but to save it. 48) The person who rejects me and does not accept my message has One who [will] judge him. The message that I have spoken will judge him on the last day [i.e., the judgment day]. 49) For I did not speak from myself [i.e., on my own authority], but the Father Himself, who sent me, has ordered me what to say and speak. 50) And I know that [obeying] His commandments [leads to] never ending life. So, the things which I say are what the Father has told me [to say].@



CHAPTER THIRTEEN

1) Now it was before the Passover Festival [was to begin] and Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and return to the Father. Those [living] in the world, whom He had loved, and who were His own [disciples], He continued to love [dearly] to the very end [i.e., of His life on earth].

2) The devil had already filled the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon=s son, with the desire to turn Jesus over [i.e., to the Jewish authorities]. During the [Passover] meal, 3) Jesus, who knew that the Father had given Him complete authority, [also] knew that He had come from God and was [about] to return to God. 4) So, He got up from the dinner table, laid aside His [outer] clothing and took a towel and wrapped it around Himself. 5) Then He poured water into a basin and began washing His disciples' feet and drying them with the towel around His waist. 6) He came to Simon Peter, who said to Him, ALord, are you going to wash my feet, [too]?@ 7) Jesus answered him, AYou do not understand what I am doing, but you will later on.@ 8) Peter said to Him, A[No], you will never wash my feet.@ Jesus replied to him, AIf I do not wash you, you will not be able to participate with me [i.e., as a disciple].@ 9) Simon Peter [then] said to Him, ALord, do not [just] wash my feet only, but my hands and head, too.@ 10) Jesus replied to him, AThe person who has already had a bath is completely clean and does not need to wash anything but his feet. And you disciples are [already] clean [i.e., spiritually], but not every one of you.@ 11) For Jesus knew who would betray Him; that is why He said, ANot every one of you is [spiritually] clean.@

12) So, after Jesus had washed His disciples' feet and put His [outer] clothing back on, He reclined again [at the dinner table] and said to them, ADo you understand what I have done to you? 13) You call me >Teacher,= and >Lord,= and you are right in doing so because that is who I am. 14) So if I, then, being your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you should wash one another=s feet also. 15) For I have set an example for you, so that you should do as I have done for you. 16) Truly, truly, I tell you, a slave is not greater [in importance] than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the person who sent him. 17) If you know these things, you will be happy if you practice them.

18) AI am not talking about all of you; for I know the ones I have chosen [i.e., which of the twelve apostles would be faithful]. But let the Scripture [Psa. 41:9] be fulfilled [that says], >The person who eats with me has [viciously] turned against me.= 19) I am telling you this now, [even] before it happens, so that when it does happen, you will believe that I am [the Messiah]. 20) Truly, truly, I tell you, the person who welcomes whoever I send welcomes me; and the one who welcomes me, welcomes God, who sent me.@

21) After Jesus said this, He felt disturbed in His spirit and declared, ATruly, truly, I tell you, one of you will turn me over [to the Jewish authorities].@ 22) The disciples looked at one another, puzzled over who He was talking about. 23) One of Jesus= disciples, [the one] He loved [Note: Probably this was the apostle John] was reclining at the dinner table close to Jesus. 24) So, Simon Peter motioned [to John] and said, AAsk Jesus which one [of us] He is talking about.@ 25) So, John leaned over close to Jesus and asked Him, ALord, who is it?@ 26) Jesus answered; AIt is the person to whom I give a piece of bread after dipping it [in the sauce bowl].@ So, when He had dipped the piece of bread, He took it [out] and gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27) Then after [he ate] the piece of bread, Satan entered Judas= heart. So, Jesus said to him, ADo what you are going to do, and do it quickly.@ 28) Now, no one at the table knew why He had said this to him. 29) For some of them thought, since Judas was in charge of the [money] bag, that Jesus was telling him, ABuy whatever we need for the [Passover] meal,@ or that he was [being told] to give [money] to poor people [from it]. 30) So, after eating the piece of bread, Judas went out immediately. And it was nighttime.

31) Then after Judas left, Jesus said, ANow the Son of man is [being] glorified [Note: Being Aglorified@ involved Jesus= crucifixion, resurrection and ascension. The first step of this had now begun]. And God is [being] glorified through the Son=s life. 32) And if God is [so] glorified through Him [now], God will [also] glorify the Son in Himself very soon. [Note: Possibly this was a reference to Jesus returning to the Father=s presence].

33) AI will be with you, [my dear] children, for only a little while [longer]. You people will look for me, but I am now telling you what I told the Jewish authorities, >You will not be able to go where I will be.= 34) I am giving you a new commandment: love one another. Also you should love one another in the same way that I have loved you. 35) If you love one another, then everyone will know by [observing] this that you are my disciples.@

36) Simon Peter said to Jesus, ALord, where are you going?@ Jesus answered, AYou cannot follow me where I am going now, but you will [be able to] follow later.@ 37) Peter [then] said to Him, ALord, why can I not follow you [there] even now? I am willing to die for you.@ 38) Jesus answered him; AWill you [really] die for me? Truly, truly, I tell you, before the rooster crows, you will deny [knowing] me three times.@



CHAPTER FOURTEEN

1) [Jesus continued], ADo not allow your hearts to be upset. You should believe in God, and believe in me also. 2) There are many rooms in my Father=s house, and I am going to prepare a place for each one you [in them]. I would not have told you this if it were not so. 3) And if I go to prepare a place for each of you, I will return to take all you to [be with] me, so that you also will be where I am. 4) And you all know how to get where I am going.@ 5) Thomas said to Jesus, ALord, we do not know where you are going; how could we [possibly] know the way [to get there]?@ 6) Jesus answered him, AI am the way [to God], and the truth [to believe], and the life [to live]. No one can go to the Father, except through [believing in] me. 7) If you have come to know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know Him, and have seen Him.@ 8) Philip said to Him, ALord, show us the Father and it [will] be enough for us.@ 9) Jesus replied to him, AHave I been with you men all this time, and [still] you do not know me, Philip? The person who has seen me, has [also] seen the Father. How can you say, >Show us the Father=? 10) Do you not believe that I am in [fellowship with] the Father, and the Father is in [fellowship with] me? The words which I say to you do not originate with me, but it is the Father, who lives in me, who does His work [in me]. 11) You should believe me [when I say] that I am in [fellowship with] the Father, and the Father is in [fellowship with] me. Or else believe me for the sake of the deeds themselves that I perform. 12) Truly, truly, I tell you, the person who believes in me will perform the deeds that I do also; and he will perform even greater deeds than these, because I am going to the Father. [Note: The Agreater deeds@ are probably evangelizing the world]. 13) And I will do [for you] whatever you ask in my name [i.e., by my authority], so that the Father may be honored through the Son. 14) I will do anything [for you], if you ask [for it] in my name. 15) If you love me, you will obey my commandments.

16) AAnd I will ask the Father and He will give you another Helper [i.e., besides me], who will be with you forever. 17) He is the Holy Spirit of truth [i.e., who reveals truth], whom the world cannot receive, for it does not see Him or know Him. [But] you know Him, for He lives with you, and will be within you. 18) I will not abandon you [Note: The Greek says, Aleave you orphans@]; I will come [back] to you. 19) After a little while [longer] the world will not see me anymore, but you men will see me. Because I [will continue to] live, you will live also. 20) When that day comes [i.e., after His ascension?], you will know that I am in [fellowship with] the Father, and that you are in [fellowship with] me, and that I am in you [i.e., through the Holy Spirit]. 21) The person who knows [what] my commandments [are] and obeys them is the one who [truly] loves me. And the person who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him."

22) [Then] Judas (not the betrayer) [Note: This was the son of James, See Luke 6:16. He is also called Thaddaeus, See Matt. 10:3], said to Jesus, ALord, what has happened [i.e., to your original plans to be seen by everyone when you came. See Luke 21:27], that you will reveal yourself to us apostles [only] and not to the [whole] world?@ 23) Jesus answered him, AIf a person loves me, he will obey my teaching, and my Father will love him and we will come to him and make our home with him [i.e., in the person of the indwelling Holy Spirit]. 24) The person who does not love me will not obey my teaching. And the message you are hearing is not mine, but belongs to the Father, who sent me.

25) AI have told you these things while I am still with you. 26) But the Helper, that is, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name [i.e., by my authority] will teach you everything. And He will remind you of everything that I [have] said to you. 27) I leave you with peace; I give you my peace. I am not giving you peace like the world gives. Do not allow your hearts to be upset or afraid. 28) You heard me say to you, >I am going away and I am returning to you.= If you [really] loved me, you would have been happy that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I am. 29) Now I have told you this, even before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe [in me]. 30) I will not speak with you very much anymore because the ruler of the world [i.e., Satan] is coming, and he has no control over me. 31) But, in order for the world to know that I love the Father, I am [always] doing what the Father commands me to. Let us get up, and leave here.@ [i.e., leave the room where they had eaten the Passover meal. See 13:1 with 18:1].



CHAPTER FIFTEEN

1) [Jesus continued], AI am the real vine, and my Father is the owner of the vineyard. 2) He will cut off [See verse 6] every branch [i.e., follower of Christ] who is in [fellowship with] me that does not bear fruit. And He will prune every branch that does bear fruit, so it will bear more fruit. 3) You people are already >clean= [i.e., have been pruned of undesirable traits] because of [obedience to] the teaching I have given you. 4) Remain united to me, and I will remain united to you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it remains united to the vine, so neither can you people [bear fruit] unless you remain united to me.

5) AI am the vine; you people are the branches. The person who remains united to me, and I to him, will bear much fruit. For you cannot do anything if [you are] separated from me. 6) If a person does not remain united to me, he will be thrown out as a [fruitless] branch and dried up. People gather up such branches and throw them into the fire to be burned [as fuel?]. 7) If you remain in [fellowship with] me and my teaching remains in your hearts, [you can] ask for whatever you want, and it will be done for you. 8) My Father is honored by your bearing much fruit and [thus] showing that you are my disciples.

9) AJust as the Father has loved me, [so] I have also loved you. You should continue to receive [or, respond to] my love. [Note: The next verse tells how this can be done]. 10) If you obey my commandments, [then] you will continue receiving my love; just as I have obeyed my Father=s commandments and [so] continue receiving His love. 11) I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in your hearts, and that your joy may be complete. 12) My commandment [to you] is this: You should love one another just as I have loved you. 13) No one has [any] greater love than to give up his life for his friends. 14) You people are my friends if you do what I command you to. 15) I do not call you slaves anymore, for a slave does not know what his master is doing. But I have called you friends, because I have told you everything that I heard from my Father. 16) You [apostles] did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you to go and bear much fruit [i.e., through their evangelizing], and that your fruit should last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask Him for in my name [i.e. by my authority]. 17) I command you to do these things so that you will [demonstrate your] love for one another. [Note: Or this may mean that His command was to love one another, as in verse 12].

18) AIf the world hates you, then know that it has [already] hated me, [even] before it hated you. 19) If you belonged to the world, the world would love [you as] its own people. But since you do not belong to the world, for I chose you out of it, which is why the world hates you. 20) Remember what I said to you, >A slave is not greater [in importance] than his master.= If they persecuted me, they will [also] persecute you, too; if they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21) But they [i.e., the world] will do all these things to you for my name=s sake [i.e., because you are my disciples], for they do not know Him [i.e., God], who sent me. 22) They would not be guilty of sinning if I had not come and spoken to them. But now [that I have], they have no excuse for their sin. 23) The person who hates me hates my Father also. 24) If I had not performed the [miraculous] deeds among them which no one else had done, they would not be guilty of sinning. But now they have both seen and hated both me and my Father. 25) This all happened so the Scripture, written in their Law [Psa. 35:19], would be fulfilled, >They hated me for no reason.=

26) ABut the Helper will come, that is, the Holy Spirit of truth [i.e., who reveals truth]. He comes from the Father and I will send Him to you from the Father. [When He comes] He will give testimony about me. 27) And you will give testimony about me [also], because you men have been with me from the beginning [of my ministry].@



CHAPTER SIXTEEN

1) [Jesus continued], AI have told you these things so that you men would not fall away [i.e., from the faith]. 2) The Jewish authorities will expel you from their synagogues. In fact, the time will come when whoever kills you will think he is doing a service to God. 3) And they will do these things because they have not known [either] the Father or me. 4) But I have told you these things so that, when the time comes [for people to do such things], you will remember that I had warned you. I did not tell you them at the beginning [of my ministry] because I was with you [i.e., to protect you from persecution].

5) ABut now I am going to Him who sent me; yet none of you is asking me, >Where are you going?= 6) And now that I have told you these things, your hearts are full of grief. 7) Yet I am telling you the truth: It will be helpful to you for me to go away. For unless I go, the Helper [i.e., the Holy Spirit] will not come to you. But if I go, I will send Him to you. 8) And when He does come, He will bring conviction to the world regarding sin [i.e., exposing it and producing guilt], regarding what is right [i.e., upholding godly standards], and regarding judgment [i.e., showing that sin condemns]. 9) [The world will be proven guilty] of sin for not believing in me. 10) [It will be shown] what is right because I am going [back] to the Father and you will not see me anymore. 11) [And it will be shown] judgment, because the ruler of this world [i.e., Satan. See 12:31] has been condemned [i.e., by Jesus= death and resurrection].

12) AI still have many things to tell you, but you cannot bear [to hear] them at present. 13) However, when the Holy Spirit of truth comes, He will lead you [apostles] into all the truth. For He will not speak on His own authority, but will speak [only] what He hears [from the Father]. And He will tell you about the things that are to come. 14) He will honor me, for He will receive what belongs to me and will declare it to you. 15) Everything the Father has belongs to me. Therefore, I said that the Holy Spirit will receive what belongs to me and will declare it to you.

16) After a little while [longer] you will not see me anymore. Then a little while [later] you will see me again.@

17) Then some of Jesus= disciples said to one another, AWhat is this He is telling us: >After a little while [longer] you will not see me. Then, a little while [later] you will see me again,= and >Because I am going [back] to the Father=?@ [See verse 10]. 18) So, they [again] said, AWhat does He mean by saying, >A little while=? We do not know what He is talking about.@

19) Jesus sensed that the disciples wanted to ask Him a question, so He said to them, AAre you discussing among yourselves my saying >After a little while [longer] you will not see me. Then, a little while [later] you will see me again=? 20) Truly, truly, I tell you, you will cry and mourn [i.e., over my suffering and death], but the world will be glad [about it]. You will be sad, but your sadness will turn to joy [i.e., when learning of my resurrection]. 21) A woman has pain when giving birth because her time has come. But when the child is born, she does not remember the intense suffering because she is so happy over the child being born into the world. 22) So, you men also will experience grief [i.e., over my suffering and death], but I will see you again and your hearts will be glad. And no one will take away your joy. 23) At that time [i.e., after my resurrection], you will not be asking me [for] anything. Truly, truly, I tell you, if you will ask the Father for anything [then], in my name [i.e., by my authority], He will give it to you. 24) Up until now you have not asked for anything in my name. [So now] ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be complete.

25) AI have spoken these things to you in figurative language. [However], the time will come when I will not speak to you in figurative language, but will tell you plainly about the Father. 26) At that time you will ask Him [i.e., for things in prayer], in my name; I do not say that I will ask the Father for you, 27) for the Father Himself loves you [i.e., and will grant your requests without my persuasion], because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28) I came from the Father into this world and now I am leaving the world and returning to the Father.@

29) [Then] Jesus= disciples said [to Him], ALook, you are speaking plainly now, and not in figurative language. 30) Now we realize that you know everything and do not need anyone to ask you [questions]. This makes us believe that you came from God.@ 31) Jesus replied to them, ADo you believe [in me] now? 32) Look, the time is coming --- yes, it is already here --- when each of you will be scattered to his own home, and will leave me [all] alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. 33) I have said these things to you so that you can have peace in [fellowship with] me. You will have trouble in the world, but cheer up, for I have conquered the world.@



CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

1) After saying these things, Jesus looked up to heaven and said, AFather, the time has come; honor your Son so that your Son may honor you. 2) Just as you gave Him authority over all mankind, He will give never ending life to all those people [Note: The Greek word here is neuter gender, Aall those things@] you have given Him. 3) And this is never ending life; that people may know you [as] the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the One whom you have sent. 4) I am honoring you [while] on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. 5) And now, Father, honor me in your presence with the honor I had with you before the world was [created]. 6) I have revealed your name [i.e., your power and character] to the men you gave me out of the world [i.e., the apostles]. They belonged to you, but you gave them to me, and they have obeyed your word. 7) Now they know that everything you gave me came from you, 8) because I have given them the message you gave me, and they accepted it. They [also] knew for certain that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9) I am praying for them [i.e., the apostles]; I am not praying for the world, but for those whom you gave me, who belong to you. 10) And everything I have belongs to you, and what you have belongs to me; and I am honored through these men. 11) And [now] I am coming to you, for I will not be in the world any longer, yet these men are [still] in the world. Holy Father, protect them by [the power of] your name which you have given me. May these men be one, as we are. 12) I protected them while I was with them by [the power of] your name which you gave me. [See verse 11]. I guarded them so that not one of them was lost except the Ason of destruction@ [i.e., Judas]. [This was] so that the Scripture would be fulfilled [Psa. 41:9?]. 13) But now I am coming to you, and I am speaking these things [while still] in the world, so that they [i.e., the apostles] may have my joy within them in all its fullness. 14) I have given them your word, and the world hated them because they do not belong to the world just as I do not belong to the world. 15) I am not praying that you should take them out of the world, but that you should protect them from the evil one [i.e., the devil]. 16) They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. 17) Set them apart [i.e., for your service] through the truth; your word is truth. 18) Just as you have sent me into the world, so I have sent [i.e., will send] them into the world. 19) And for their sakes I dedicate myself [to you] so that they themselves also may be truly dedicated [to you].

20) AI am not praying for these [apostles] only, but also for [all of] those who believe in me through their message. 21) [I pray] that all of them may be one, just as you, Father, are [one] in [fellowship with] me, and I [am one] in [fellowship with] you, so that they also may be [one] in [fellowship with] us in order that the world may [see it and] believe that you sent me. 22) And I have given them [i.e., all believers] the honor which you gave me, so that they may be one, just as we are one: 23) I in them, and you in me, so that they may be completely one. [This is] so the world will know that you sent me and that you love them just as you love me.

24) AFather, I want those you gave me [i.e., the apostles, see verse 6] to be with me where I am [going], so they will see my splendor [i.e., in heaven], which you have given me, for you loved me before the creation of the world. 25) Righteous Father, the world does not know you but I know you, and these men know that you sent me. 26) And I declared your name to them and I will continue to declare it, so that the love you have for me will be in them [also], and that I [will be] in them.@



CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

1) After Jesus had said these things He went out with His disciples across the Kidron valley. [Note: This was a Awadi,@ or dry creek bed which carried a torrent of water during the rainy season. It ran parallel with the east wall of Jerusalem, between the city and the Mount of Olives]. There was an [olive] orchard there and Jesus and His disciples went into it.

2) Now Judas, who [was soon to] turn Jesus over [to the Jewish authorities] also knew where this place was, for Jesus had frequently met there with His disciples. 3) So, Judas took a detachment of [Roman] soldiers and some [Temple] guards sent from the leading priests and Pharisees, and carrying lanterns, torches and weapons, they went to the orchard.

4) Since Jesus knew everything that was going to happen to Him, He went out and said to them, AWho are you men looking for?@ 5) They answered Him, AJesus, from Nazareth.@ Jesus replied to them, AI am [He].@ Judas, who was turning Him over [to the Jewish authorities] was standing there with them also. 6) Now when Jesus had said to them, AI am [He],@ they [all] moved backward and fell to the ground. [Note: This appears to have been done by some miraculous power]. 7) So, He asked them again, AWho are you looking for?@ And they answered, AJesus, from Nazareth.@ 8) Jesus said to them, AI [already] told you that I am [He]; so if you are looking for me, let these men [i.e., the apostles] go.@ 9) [He said this] so the words He had spoken [previously] would be fulfilled [See 17:12], AI did not lose any of those men you [i.e., God] gave me.@

10) So, Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it out and struck the head priest=s slave, cutting off his right ear. Now the slave=s name was Malchus. 11) Then Jesus said to Peter, APut your sword back in its sheath. Should I not drink the cup [i.e., of suffering] the Father has given me?@

12) So, the detachment of [Roman] soldiers, their commanding officer and the Jewish [Temple] guards arrested Jesus and tied Him up. 13) They led Him to Annas first [Note: This man was a former head priest. See Luke 3:2], for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was head priest that year. 14) Now Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was profitable for one man to die for the people [See 11:50].

15) Simon Peter followed along with another disciple. [Note: Some think this refers to the apostle John himself, but there is no strong evidence in favor of that conclusion]. Now that disciple was [well-] known to the head priest, so was able to enter his courtyard with Jesus 16) while Peter stood outside at the gate. So, the other disciple, who was [well-] known to the head priest, went outside and spoke to the girl gatekeeper, [who] then brought Peter inside [too]. 17) So, the slave-girl gatekeeper asked Peter, AAre you not one of this man=s disciples, too?@ A[No], I am not,@ Peter replied. 18) Now the [head priest=s] slaves and the [Temple] guards were standing around a charcoal fire they had made to warm themselves by, because it was cold. And Peter was also warming himself with them.

19) Meanwhile, the head priest asked Jesus about His disciples and His teaching. [Note: This was probably Annas, the former Ahead priest@ who later sent Jesus to the current head priest, Caiaphas. See verse 24]. 20) Jesus answered him, AI have spoken publicly to the world; I always taught in the synagogues and in the Temple, where all the Jews assemble. I have never said anything in secret. 21) Why are you asking me? Ask the people who have heard me about what I said to them. Look, these people know what I said.@

22) When Jesus said this, one of the guards standing there struck Him [in the face], saying, AIs that any way to talk to the head priest?@ 23) Jesus answered him, AIf I have said anything wrong, tell me what it was. But if [I spoke] properly, why did you hit me?@ 24) So, Annas had Him tied up and sent Him [on] to Caiaphas, the head priest.

25) Now Simon Peter had been standing and warming himself [by the outdoor charcoal fire]. So, someone asked him, AAre you not one of His disciples, too?@ Peter denied it, saying, A[No], I am not.@ 26) One of the head priest=s slaves, who was a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, said, ADid I not see you in the orchard with him?@ 27) So, Peter denied it again, and immediately the rooster crowed.

28) Then, early in the morning they led Jesus from Caiaphas to [Governor Pilate=s] headquarters. But the Jewish authorities would not enter it, because [if they had] they would have become ceremonially unclean, and could not eat the Passover meal. [Note: This was because they regarded a Gentile house as defiling]. 29) So, Pilate went outside to them and asked, AWhat charge do you bring against this man?@ 30) The Jewish authorities answered Pilate, AIf this man were not guilty of wrongdoing, we would not have turned him over to you.@ 31) So, Pilate said to them, ATake him yourselves and judge him according to your [own] law.@ [But] the Jews replied to him, AIt is not permissible for us to put anyone to death.@ 32) [They said this] so that the words Jesus had spoken would be fulfilled, regarding the kind of death He would die. [Note: Jesus had predicted he would be Alifted up,@ indicating a Roman crucifixion. See 12:32-33].

33) So, Pilate went back into his headquarters and called for Jesus. He said to Him, AAre you the King of the Jews?@ 34) Jesus answered, AAre you saying this of your own accord, or did other people tell you about me?@ 35) Pilate answered, AAm I a Jew? Your own people and the leading priests turned you over to me. What have you done?@ 36) Jesus answered him; AMy kingdom does not belong to this world. If it did, then my servants [i.e., disciples] would fight to keep me from being turned over to the Jews. But now my kingdom does not belong here@ [i.e., Jesus= kingdom was not based on physical, but spiritual principles]. 37) So, Pilate said to Him, AAre you a king, then?@ Jesus answered, AYou are [correct in] calling me a >king.= This was the [very] purpose for which I was born and came into the world, that I should testify about the truth. Every person who wants [to know and obey] the truth listens to me.@ 38) Pilate replied to Him, AWhat is truth?@

After saying this, Pilate again went outside to the Jews and said to them, AI do not find him guilty of any crime. 39) But since you [Jews] have a custom that I should release to you one [prisoner] during the Passover Festival, do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?@ 40) They shouted out again, A[No], not this man. [We want] Barabbas!@ [Note: Ironically, Barabbas= name means Ason of the father@]. Now Barabbas was a robber.



CHAPTER NINETEEN

1) So, Pilate then took Jesus and had Him flogged. 2) The soldiers wove thorny twigs into a crown and placed it on His head and dressed Him in a purple robe. 3) Then they went [up] to Him and said, AHey! King of the Jews!@ and struck Him [in the face with their hands].

4) Now Pilate went outside again and said to the Jewish authorities, ALook, I am bringing him out here to you, so you can know that I do not find him guilty of any crime.@ 5) So, Jesus came outside wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Then Pilate said to the [assembled] Jewish authorities, ALook, [here is] the man!@

6) Then, when the leading priests and the [Temple] guards saw Him, they shouted out, ACrucify him, crucify him!@ Pilate responded by saying, ATake him yourselves and crucify him, because I do not find him guilty of any crime.@ 7) The Jews replied, AWe have a law which requires that he ought to die because he claimed to be the Son of God.@ 8) So, when Pilate heard this statement, he was [even] more afraid 9) and went back into the headquarters again and said to Jesus, AWhere did you come from?@ But Jesus did not answer him. 10) Then Pilate said to Him, AAre you not going to speak to me? Do you not know that I have the authority to release you or to crucify you?@ 11) Jesus answered him, AYou would not have any authority over me unless it were given to you from above [i.e., from God]. So, the person who turned me over to you is guilty of a worse sin.@

12) After [hearing] this, Pilate tried to release Jesus, but the Jews shouted out, AIf you release this man, you are no friend of Caesar=s. Everyone who claims to be a king [i.e., as they had accused Jesus of doing. See 18:37] is in opposition to Caesar.@ 13) Then when Pilate heard [them say] this, he brought Jesus outside [again] and sat down on the judge=s bench at a place called The Stone Pavement, but in the Hebrew language is called Gabbatha. 14) Now it was about six o=clock in the morning [Note: This was according to Roman time, but if Jewish time were meant, it would have been 12 noon] on the Day of Preparation for the Passover Festival. [Note: This would be the day before the Passover Festival]. And Pilate said to the Jews, ALook, [here is] your king!@ 15) Then they shouted out, ATake him away; take him away and crucify him!@ Pilate replied to them, ADo you want me to crucify your king?@ The leading priests answered, AWe do not have any [other] king, except Caesar.@ 16) Finally, Pilate turned Jesus over to them to be crucified.

17) So, they took Jesus [away] and He went out [of the city] carrying the cross by Himself to a place called The Place of the Skull, [also] called Golgotha in the Hebrew language [and Calvary in Latin]. 18) There they crucified Him, along with two other men, one on each side with Jesus in the middle.

19) Then Pilate had an inscription written and placed on the cross [i.e., on the upright portion, above His head]. It read, AJesus from Nazareth, the King of the Jews.@ 20) Many of the Jews read this notice, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city [of Jerusalem]. It was written in the Hebrew, Latin and Greek languages. 21) But the Jewish leading priests said to Pilate, ADo not write >The King of the Jews,= but >He said, I am the King of the Jews.=@ 22) Pilate replied, AWhat I have written I have written.@ [i.e., AI am not going to change it.@]

23) So, when the [Roman] soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took His clothing and divided them into four parts, one for each soldier. They also took His seamless coat [i.e., which was left over], woven from top [to bottom] in one piece, 24) and said to one another, ALet us not tear it [i.e., because of its great value], but gamble to see who gets it.@ [This was] so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, which said [Psa. 22:18], AThey divided my clothing between themselves, and they gambled for my clothing.@ So, this is what the soldiers did.

25) Now standing near Jesus= cross were His mother; His mother=s sister [i.e., Salome, the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee. See Matt. 27:55; Mark 15:40]; Mary the wife of Clopas [i.e., the mother of James and Joseph. See Matt. 27:55]; and Mary, from Magdala. 26) So, when Jesus saw His mother standing beside the disciple He loved [i.e., probably the apostle John], He said to her, A[My dear] woman, look, [here is] your son!@ 27) Then He said to the disciple, ALook, [here is] your mother!@ And from that time onward, this disciple took Jesus= mother to [live in] his own home.

28) Now Jesus knew that everything had been completed [i.e., relating to His crucifixion], so then He said, in order to fulfill Scripture [Psa. 69:21], AI am thirsty.@ 29) A bottle full of sour wine was sitting nearby so someone put a sponge full of the wine on a hyssop plant stalk and lifted it up to Jesus= mouth. 30) After drinking some of the sour wine, Jesus said, AIt is completed,@ [i.e., His work of dying for the sins of mankind] and gave up His spirit [i.e., to God. See Luke 23:46].

31) Now it was the Day of Preparation [Note: This was the day before the Passover Festival began, and fell on a Friday that year], and the Jews did not permit bodies to remain on a cross over the Sabbath day. (Besides, that Sabbath day was a special day [i.e., since it was both the Passover and the regular weekly Sabbath, as well]). So, they asked Pilate to have Jesus= and the criminals= legs broken [i.e., to speed up their deaths] and then have their bodies taken away. 32) So, the soldiers went and broke the legs of the first [criminal] and then of the other man crucified with Jesus. 33) But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. 34) However, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus= side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out. 35) And the person who saw this happen is giving a true testimony about it. He knows it is true [and is giving it] so that you will believe [it, also]. 36) For these things happened so that the Scripture would be fulfilled [Ex. 12:46], ANot a [single] bone of his will be broken.@ 37) And another Scripture says [Zech. 12:10], APeople will look at him whom they [had] pierced.@

38) After this happened, one of Jesus= disciples, named Joseph from Arimathaea, asked Pilate (but secretly, for fear of the Jews) if he could remove Jesus= body [from the cross]. Pilate granted him permission, so he went and removed the body from the cross. 39) Nicodemus, the man who first came to Jesus one night, also went with him [i.e., to claim Jesus= body]. He brought about a seventy-five pound mixture of myrrh and aloes [i.e., aromatic spices used for embalming]. 40) So, they took Jesus= body and wrapped it in linen cloths, with spices, according to customary Jewish burial practices. 41) Now there was an [olive] orchard at the place where Jesus was crucified. And in the orchard there was a new grave site [i.e., a cave-like tomb] where no one had ever been buried. 42) So, they placed Jesus= body there, for it was the Day of Preparation and that was the closest grave site. [Note: Since this was the day before the Passover Festival, and the next day was also the regular weekly Sabbath, they had to bury the body before sundown to comply with Jewish restrictions against working on a Sabbath day].



CHAPTER TWENTY

1) Now early [in the morning], while it was still dark on the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday], Mary from Magdala went to the [cave-like] tomb and saw the stone [had been] removed from [the entrance of] the tomb. 2) So, she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved [i.e., probably the apostle John], and said to them, AThey have taken the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they have put Him.@

3) So, Peter and the other disciple left [hurriedly] and went to the grave site. 4) The two of them ran together, but the other disciple outran Peter and arrived at the grave site first. 5) He stooped down and looked inside [the cave-like tomb] and saw the linen cloths lying there [i.e., these were wrappings used to hold embalming spices against the body], but he did not go in. 6) Then Simon Peter, who had been following him, also arrived and went [straight] into the cave-like tomb and saw the linen cloths lying there. 7) Now the cloth that had been around Jesus= head was not lying with the [other] linen cloths, but was rolled up by itself. 8) Finally, the other disciple, who had arrived at the cave-like tomb first, went on into it. And [when] he saw [the grave clothes, but no body], he believed [in Jesus= resurrection]. 9) But these disciples still did not understand the Scripture that [predicted] Jesus must rise again from the dead.

10) So, the disciples went back home again, 11) but Mary [from Magdala] was standing outside of the cave-like tomb crying. While she was [still] crying she stooped down to look in the tomb, 12) and there she saw two angels [dressed] in white [clothing] sitting where Jesus= body had lain, one at His head and one at His feet. 13) They said to Mary, A[My dear] woman, why are you crying?@ She answered, AThey have taken my Lord away, and I do not know where they have put Him.@ 14) After she said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but did not know it was Him. 15) [Then] Jesus said to her, A[My dear] woman, why are you crying? Who are you looking for?@ Assuming He was the grounds keeper, she said to Him, ASir, if you have carried Him away from here, tell me where you laid Him, and I will go and get Him.@ 16) [Then] Jesus said to her, AMary!@ She turned toward Him and replied in the Hebrew language, ARabboni@ which means ATeacher.@ 17) Jesus said to her, ADo not hold on to me, for I have not ascended to the Father yet [Note: Apparently Jesus was discouraging Mary from embracing Him in worship as was done in Matt. 28:9, and thereby causing a delay of when the rest of the disciples would learn of His resurrection], but go to my brothers and tell them [I said] >I am [about] to ascend to my Father and to your Father, and to my God and your God.=@ 18) So, Mary from Magdala went and told the disciples, AI have seen the Lord,@ and that He had said these things to her. [See Matt. 28:7-10].

19) So, when it was evening on that day, [which was] the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday] and the doors [of someone=s house], where the disciples were gathered, were closed [i.e., probably locked] for fear of the Jewish authorities, Jesus came and stood among them. [Note: Probably Jesus passed through the closed door miraculously]. He said to them, AMay there be peace in your hearts.@ 20) After saying this, Jesus showed them His hands and His side, so they rejoiced when they saw the Lord [i.e., now convinced that He had indeed risen from the dead].

21) Jesus said to them again, AMay there be peace in your hearts. Just as the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.@ 22) Upon saying this, Jesus breathed on the disciples and said to them, A[Be willing to] receive the Holy Spirit.@ [Note: This Abreathing@ served as a pledge of the Holy Spirit which actually came on these apostles a few weeks later. See Acts 1:5-8; 2:4]. 23) Whosever sins you forgive, they will be forgiven [by God]. And whosever sins you do not forgive, they will not be forgiven [by God].@ [Note: Actual forgiveness would result only when people responded, by faith, to the Gospel message. See Acts 2:37-38].

24) But one of the twelve apostles, named Thomas, [and also] called AThe Twin,@ was not with them when Jesus came. 25) So, the other disciples told him, AWe have seen the Lord.@ But he replied to them, AI will not believe [it] unless I see the scars of the nails in His hands, and put my finger on the nail scars, and put my hand in His side.@

26) Eight days later [i.e., the following Sunday], Jesus= disciples were inside [the house] again, [but this time] Thomas was with them. The doors were [still] closed when Jesus [suddenly] stood among them [See note on verse 19] and said, AMay there be peace in your hearts.@ 27) Then He said to Thomas, APut your finger here [i.e., to touch the nail scars] and look at my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side [i.e., where the spear had pierced Him]. Stop doubting and believe [that it is really I].@ 28) Thomas replied to Him, AMy Lord and my God.@ 29) Jesus said to him, AHave you believed [that I am alive] because you have seen me? Those who have not seen me and yet believe are [even more] blessed.@

30) Jesus performed many other [miraculous] signs in front of His disciples which are not recorded in this book [i.e., in the Gospel of John]. 31) But these [signs] are written down so that you will believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that when you believe [this], you will have [never ending] life in His name [i.e., through His person and work].



CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

1) After these things happened Jesus showed Himself to His disciples again at Lake Tiberias. [Note: This was another name for Lake Galilee]. Here is the way He did it. 2) Simon Peter; Thomas, called AThe Twin;@ Nathaniel from Cana in Galilee; the sons of Zebedee [i.e., James and John] and two other disciples of Jesus were [all] together [at the lake]. 3) Simon Peter said to [the rest of] them, AI am going fishing.@ The others replied to him, AWe will go with you, too.@ [So], they went out and got into their boat but did not catch anything that night.

4) Now as the day was dawning Jesus was [seen] standing on the shore, but the disciples did not know it was Jesus. [Note: Probably because it was not light enough yet]. 5) So, Jesus said to them, AYoung fellows, you have not [caught] any fish yet, have you?@ They answered Him, ANo, [we have not].@ 6) Then He said to them, AThrow your net over the right side of the boat and you will catch some [fish]. So, they threw [the net out] but they were not able to pull it in because of so many fish. 7) So, that disciple whom Jesus loved [i.e., probably the apostle John] said to Peter, AIt is the Lord!@ When Simon Peter heard it was the Lord, he wrapped his outer robe around him, (for he [had taken it off and] was wearing only his underclothing) and jumped into the lake. 8) But the other disciples came [to shore] in their little boat, dragging their net full of fish (for they were only about a hundred yards from land). 9) So, when they got to shore, they saw a charcoal fire burning there with fish [cooking] on it and [some] bread. 10) Jesus said to them, ABring [me] some of the fish you just caught.@ 11) Then Simon Peter boarded [the boat] and dragged the net full of large fish to shore. And even though there were one hundred fifty-three [fish], the net did not tear from such a large number. 12) Jesus said to them, ACome and have breakfast.@ [But] none of the disciples dared to ask Him, AWho are you?@ because they [already] knew it was the Lord. 13) [So], Jesus went [over to them] and took the bread and fish and gave it to them. 14) This was then the third time that Jesus was made known to His disciples after He arose from the dead.

15) So, after they had eaten, Jesus said to Simon Peter, ASimon, son of John, do you really love me more than these [other disciples do]?@ Peter answered Him, AYes, Lord, you know that I love you.@ [Note: Since two different Greek words for Alove@ are used in this conversation, some scholars see a distinction in their meaning. See Butler, Vol. II, pp. 453-457 for a discussion of these views]. Jesus replied to him, A[Then] feed my lambs.@ 16) Jesus asked him a second time, ASimon, son of John; do you [really] love me?@ Peter answered Him, AYes, Lord, you know that I love you.@ Jesus replied to him, A[Then] take care of my sheep.@ 17) Then Jesus asked him a third time, ASimon, son of John, do you [truly] love me?@ Peter was sad because Jesus had asked him a third time, ADo you [even] love me?@ So, he said to Jesus, ALord, you know all things. You [surely] know that I love you.@ Jesus replied to him, A[Then] feed my sheep. 18) Truly, truly, I tell you [Peter], when you were young you used to fasten your belt around you [i.e., to get ready] and travel wherever you wanted to go. But when you are old, you will stretch out your hands and someone else will tie you up and take you [away] to where you do not want to go.@ 19) Now Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death Peter would experience in honoring God. [Note: Some see the Astretching out your hands,@ verse 18, as a reference to crucifixion]. And after saying this, Jesus said to him, ABe my follower.@

20) Peter turned around and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved [i.e., probably the apostle John] following [along behind him]. This was the same disciple who had leaned over close to Jesus at the [Passover] meal and asked Him, ALord, who is it that will turn you over [to the Jewish authorities]?@ 21) [When] Peter saw this disciple, he said to Jesus, ALord, what will happen to this man?@ 22) Jesus said to him, AIf I want him to remain [alive] until I return, what [business] is that of yours? You be my follower.@ 23) So, a rumor began circulating among the brothers that this disciple would not die. Yet Jesus did not tell him he would not die, but [He said], AIf I want him to remain [alive] until I return, what [business] is that of yours?@

24) This is the disciple who is giving testimony about these things and has written them down, and we know his testimony is true.

25) And Jesus did many other things; if every one of them were written down, I do not think the world would hold [all] the books that would be written.


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Copyright 1994 by William E. Paul.

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