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On The Book of John
The Gospel of John Chapter 13
I will do the Gospel of John
Commentary similar to my other Commentaries . . . in that
I will bring the verse or verses in the KJV, followed by what
it is saying to me. What I write will be a personal comment,
it is NOT Scripture.
John’s Gospel Chapter 13
We now come to the fourth main division of John’s Gospel. First was the preface, the first eighteen verses of chapter 1, then the introduction, which was the rest of the first chapter. We saw the Witness of Jesus' Works and of His Words in chapters 2-12. We now come to the Witness of Jesus to His Witnesses, chapters 13 to 17. After chapter 12, our Lord Jesus brings to an abrupt halt His public ministry, making it a private ministry with His apostles.
The first twelve chapters, has as it’s subject, LIGHT. They tell of His public ministry and that He is the Light. This division is called the Upper Room Discourse, and has as its subject, love. Jesus loves His own. The last part of John’s Gospel, chapters 18-21, is about life. Our Lord Jesus came to bring us life, and that life is found only in Himself. Our eternal life comes to us only when we believe that He is the Christ, the Messiah, and accept Him as our personal Saviour and Lord. This life comes to us through His death.
Our precious Lord Jesus gave four major discourses, or speeches in His ministry: the Sermon on the Mount, found in chapters 5 through 7 in Matthew; the Mystery Parables Discourse in Matthew 13, in which He tells us about the Kingdom of Heaven; and the Olivet Discourse in chapters 24 and 25 of Matthew. The fourth of these major discourses is found in John 13 through 17, and I think it is the greatest that our Lord ever gave. It is the longest, and it is extremely important for us today because He took only His own into the Upper Room and revealed new truths to them.
His public ministry has ended . . . He has been rejected. He now speaks to His own, privately about His love for them and us. He tells us how they (and we) are to live our life here on Earth, and He tells us of the relationships between Him and those who are His own.
He will soon be on the way to the Cross. He will not be speaking to the Pharisees, the religious rulers, the Roman government or unbelievers. He shall be speaking to His own.
Jesus Washes The Feet Of The Disciples (John 13:1-38)
Have you ever truly considered this most unusual happening? My friend, Jesus is Almighty God! Christ Jesus leaves Heaven's glory and comes down to this Earth as Man, and He acts as a lowly servant, and washes the dirty feet of His disciples!
In the preceding chapter, we saw that the feet of Jesus were anointed (Mat.26:6-7; Mk.14:3; Lk.7:37-38,45-46; Jn.11:2, 12:3). But . . . here, the feet of the disciples are washed, by their Master! What a difference! As our Holy Saviour passed through this sinful world, He contacted NO defilement whatsoever. He was holy, harmless and totally undefiled. Jesus, sinless: (Isa.53:9; Mat.27:4,19,23-24; Jn.8:46; Lk.23:41,47; 2 Cor.5:21;Heb.4:15; 7:26-27; 1 Pet.2;22; 1 Jn.2:1; 3:5). This is a marvelous portion of the New Testament!
The disciples' feet needed to be washed! Jesus washed their feet with water (Jn.13:5), not with blood. This is important. Some people talk about coming anew to the fountain filled with blood and being cleansed. To me, that dishonors our Saviour! The precious Blood of Christ Jesus (1 Pet.1:19), God's Son, cleanses us from ALL sin . . . past, present, and future . . . in one application. There was only ONE Ssacrifice. "For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified" (Heb.10;14; 7:25). When you and I came as sinners to Christ Jesus, it was His shed Blood that once and for all (Heb.10:10,12,14) cleansed us and allowed us to stand before God. But . . . we do need to be cleansed, purified along our pilgrim pathway (1 Jn.1:8-9). As we walk through this wicked world, the dirt and filth of the world seems to latch onto us, and we need to get rid of it, be cleansed (Ps.119:9; 2 Cor.7:1; 2 Tim.2:21; 1 Pet.1:22). It seems that our Lord washed His disciples' feet for this very reason.
John 13:1 Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. (KJV)
Now before the feast of the Passover . . . this feast was set up as a memorial of the deliverance of the children of Israel out of Egypt. This Passover was what Christ really wanted to attend, it being His last.
When Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world to the Father . . . the death of Christ is here symbolized by a “departing out of this world.” This was a way of speaking often used by the Jews to express death (Phil.1:23; 2 Tim.4:6). The place from where Christ was about to be removed is called "this world" . . . this present world, into which He had come to save sinners (Jn.3:16-17; 1 Jn.2:2; 4:14). It was in this “world” that He had been dreadfully persecuted and received such horrendous treatment, and it would be this “world” where He would soon go through the agonizing suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane, brought on by a hypocritical “friend” betraying Him (Ps.41:9; Mk.14:10, 43-45; Mt.26:14-16).
Having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them to the end . . . the objects of His love are described by His possession of them, "His own" . . . meaning NOT all mankind, who are His by creation, and NOT the Jews, who were His nation and countrymen according to the flesh, and NOT just the twelve apostles . . . whom He had personally chosen . . . “His own” means ALL the elect of God, who are His, by His choice of them, by the Father's gift of them to Him, by the tremendous purchase price that He paid for them with His own life’s Blood, and by His prevailing calling them by His grace.
John 13:2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him; (KJV)
And supper being ended . . . this verse is highly disagreed upon by commentators. Some say it would be better translated, “while they were at supper,” but the big question is . . . What supper is meant here? Some theories: #1. some say that it was the paschal supper, others disagree; #2. possibly it was just a common supper which they ate before the Passover; #3. some think this supper was the one in the house of Simon the leper (Mat.26:6). There is no mention made in this whole chapter of the Passover supper, or of any of its rites.
The devil having now put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him . . . the person Satan influenced for his purpose, was Judas Iscariot, Simon's son . . . whether this was Simon the Pharisee (Lk.7:36-40), Simon the leper (Mk.14:3), Simon, a tanner (Acts 9:43), or Simon, the Sorcerer, which seems doubtful to me, (Acts 9:8,18), we are not told.
About the influence of the devil upon Judas, to put evil into his heart to betray his Master, see Luke 22:3-4.
John 13:3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; (KJV)
Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands . . . this expresses the greatness and dignity of Christ Jesus as Mediator. ALL the elect, ALL blessings both of grace and glory for them, and ALL power and authority over ALL other persons and things, to make them subservient to His purposes. ALL things in Jesus’ Hands: (Jn.3:35; 5:22-27; 17:2; Mat.11:27; 28:18; Lk.10:22; Acts 2:36; 1 Cor.15:27; Eph.1:21-22; Phil.2:9-11; Heb.1:2; 2:8-9).
And that he was come from God . . . Jesus’ mission and commission as Man, came from God, not of Himself. God the Father sent Him!
And went to God . . . and Jesus, the Son, would be going back to Him very soon. He would sit at God’s right Hand (Mk.16:19; Lk.22:69), and have a Name above every name (Phil.2:9), and to have angels, authorities and powers subject to Him (1 Pet.3:22) . . . revealing His high regard and respect for His Father, and His exalted character as Mediator (Jn.14:6; Eph.2:18; 1 Tim.2:5; Heb.8:6; 9:15,24; 12:24; 1 Jn.2:1). This illustrates His fantastic humility, that in the view of all this, that He should lower Himself to wash the dirty feet of His disciples.
John 13:4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. (KJV)
He riseth from supper . . . in the midst of all the activity in the room, Jesus’ mind was on something more than physical food . . . that being His meat and drink (Jn.4:34), to do His Father's will. He rises and leaves His disciples sitting to finish their meal.
And laid aside his garments . . . that He might better go about what He was about to do. This could be a symbol of His laying aside, for a while, His honor and glory as the Son of God, and of His appearing in the form of a servant (Phil.2:7).
And took a towel, and girded himself . . . or linen cloth, which served as a girdle, and after He had washed His disciples' feet, to wipe them with. This was a servant’s way of doing this . . . servants used to stand at the feet of their masters, girt about with a linen cloth, and this shows, that the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister (Mat.20:28).
John 13:5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. (KJV)
After that be poureth water into a bason . . . this also was a servant’s work (Jn.2:5-7). The bason to wash the feet in, held about a quart of water.
And began to wash the disciples feet . . . this custom of washing the feet was not used by the Jews at their Passover, or at their private entertainments, or common meals, but at the reception of strangers or traveler which had just come from a journey.
And to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded . . . after He had washed their feet, He wipes them clean; which may mean the purity of the lives and conversations of the saints in general, and of the ministers of the Gospel in particular, whose feet are beautiful when shod with the preparation of the Gospel of peace (Eph.6:15).
John 13:6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet? (KJV)
Then cometh he to Simon Peter . . . Jesus finally comes to Peter. It seems that none of the other disciples resisted, above all Judas. Some seem to think that Jesus might have started with Peter, and out of reverence to Him, refuses to be washed by Him.
And Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet? . . . he speaks as though surprised and astonished that Christ would offer to do any such thing to him . . . He, Who was the Son of the living God, should not be washing the feet of such a sinful man as he was. The Hands of this Man had done miracles, such as opening the eyes of the blind, cleansing lepers, and raising the dead, should be not be working in washing his defiled feet
John 13:7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter. (KJV)
Jesus answered and said unto him . . . Jesus answers Peter.
What I do, thou knowest not now . . . Peter knew that His Master was about to wash his feet, and the other disciples’ feet; but he did not know the meaning , did not understand why He was doing it.
But thou shalt know hereafter . . . and he did, when Jesus had performed this chore, and explained it to him. This may teach us the meaning of things which are not yet known by us, to be patient and wait the Lord's time, to make things clear to us, and good-naturedly submit to His divine will.
John 13:8 Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me. (KJV)
Peter saith unto him, thou shall never wash my feet . . . now Peter is stubborn and persistent in his stand on refusing to allow his Master to wash his feet. This definitely comes from his great reverence to Christ Jesus, although wrong and impulsively spoken. Peter should have been satisfied with Jesus’ answer, and submitted, since although he did not know the reason of such unexpected conduct, he would in the future.
Jesus answered him, if I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me . . . in order make Peter agree, Jesus does not say, “If I wash thee not” (not his feet, but Peter) . . . Jesus means NOT with water, but with His Blood, and by His Spirit . . . Jesus uses the word “wash” here, not literally, but in a spiritual and symbolic way, taking this occasion, as He sometimes does, to move away from natural things, to spiritual things. Jesus does not say thou hast no part "in" Me, but thou hast no part "with" Me . . . meaning no fellowship and communion with Him (2 Cor.6:14-16). If Jesus would not shed His Blood for Peter (and us), and wash him (and us) from our sins, we would be in a sad state of affairs, for Peter (and us) could have no relationship with Christ Jesus in this world, nor any part with Him in the heavenly inheritance hereafter. This is extremely important my friend. Unless a person is washed by Christ, he can have NO part with Him . . . not in this life or the life to come. Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; (KJV)
John 13:9 Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head. (KJV)
Simon Peter saith unto him . . . impulsive Peter now realizes his mistake in not submitting to Christ. I think that the fear that he could he deprived of communion and fellowship with Jesus, terrified him, for there was nothing more desirable to Peter or more highly valued to him than the fellowship he had with his Master.
Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head . . . I can see and hear Peter in my mind. He knew the extensive pollution of his nature, as we all must know. He knew of the desperate need for him to be cleansed . . . not only his feet, but his hands and his head as well. I can hear Peter . . . “Wash me Lord, all of me.”
John 13:10 Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all. (KJV)
Jesus saith to him, he that is washed . . . Jesus does not mean baptism. Jesus means that NO person is totally clean, unless he is regenerated by the Spirit of God, or rather, who is washed in the Blood of Christ. Washed in the Blood of Jesus: (1 Cor.6:11; Heb.13:12; 1 Pet.1:18-19; 1 Jn.1:7; Rev.1:5; 7:14).
Needeth not, save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit . . . the feet of Peter’s life and conversation, were continually gathering dirt, and need daily cleansing and purification.
And ye are clean, but not all . . . the justifying and regenerating grace are there to all the TRUE disciples of Christ. I state “TRUE” because there are millions who PROFESS to be “Christians” who do not POSSESS Christ Jesus in their heart and life. All TRUE Christians (believers, children of God) are equally born again into God’s family (Jn.1:12-13; 3:3-8), and are justified (Rom.5:1,9,18), and are clean in the sight of God. Not only Peter, but all the apostles were clean, all except one. Judas was not clean, and Jesus knew it.
John 13:11 For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, Ye are not all clean. (KJV)
For he knew who should betray him . . . Jesus knew this from the beginning; not only from the beginning of His ministry, when He chose His twelve apostles, but from the beginning of time, this being fixed by the determinate counsel of God, which Christ Jesus, being the omniscient God, knew. He knew what was taking place, and He knew that Satan had already put it into Judas's heart, and that he had consented to it.
Therefore, said he, Ye are not all clean . . . Jesus does not mention Judas’ name, though he could have. It was not yet the proper time to make this known, and too, it would make all the disciples examine themselves (1 Cor.11:28,31; 2 Cor.13:5; 1 Jn.1:9), as we too should.
John 13:12 So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? (KJV)
So after he had washed their feet . . . not just Peter’ feet, but all the disciples’ feet.
And had taken his garments . . . put His clothes on.
And was sat down again . . . at the table with his disciples, because the supper not being yet ended. When He finished His work as a servant, He reassumes the authority of Lord, Master and Teacher, and begins to teach and instruct them into what He had done to them.
He said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? . . . they only knew that He had washed their feet . . . but they did not know why He had done so, or the plan behind it, or what He wanted them learn from it.
John 13:13 Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. (KJV)
Ye call me Master and Lord . . . "Master" and "Lord" were distinguished titles among the Jews, which they often gave to their doctors and learned men. The disciples called Christ by these names, not out of flattery, but reverence of Him, and high regard for Him. Jesus did not blame them for this but instead commended them for it.
And ye say well, for so I am . . . although He had acted out the part of a servant in such an unexpected manner, by performing the lowly task of washing their feet, He still maintains His place and authority as a "Master" to teach and instruct them, and as a "Lord" to rule and govern them. (Mat.23:8-10; Phil.2:11).
John 13:14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet. (KJV)
If I then your Lord and Master . . . these titles were rightly given to Him by His disciples, because He stood in such a superior relationship to them.
Have washed your feet . . . Almighty God humbled Himself to do a servant’s task.
Ye also ought to wash one another's feet . . . I do not think this means literally washing someone’s feet, but instead means we should be willing to do the most actual humbling services one to another. We should be willing to use Jesus as an example in our lives. I do not think this was meant to set up a religious rite that we should observe because: #1. there is no evidence that Jesus intended it as a religious observance, like the Lord's Supper or the ordinance of baptism. #2. it was not observed by the apostles or the early Christians as a religious rite. #3. I think it was a clear plan of humility; to teach them, and us, by His example that they ought to humble yourself to the most lowly offices for the benefit of others.
John 13:15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. (KJV)
For I have given you an example . . . Christ Jesus is an example to His people, in the exercise of grace, humility, love, meekness, patience, and in the discharge of duty and in submitting to ordinances.
That ye should do as I have done to you . . . this was never an ordinance required by all persons, in all places, that this should be done at certain stated times. Philippians 2:3-5 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. 4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. 5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: (KJV)
John 13:16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. (KJV)
Verily, verily, I say unto you . . . Verily, verily means that Jesus is declaring the following words as being important and worthy of attention.
The servant is not greater than his Lord . . . it is enough that he be as His Lord (Mat.10:24-25). Jesus is informing the disciples they must expect persecution, and encouraging them to bear it with patience. For if the Master humbles Himself to perform such an action, much more should the servant. Christ ennobled the acts of humility by practicing them Himself. We must remember that the honor and true glory of a Christian consists in being as humble as his Lord.
Neither he that is sent, is greater than he that sent him . . . He that sends, is greater than he that is sent. I really do think that Jesus’ words were intended to suppress all worldly ambition and lordly conduct in the apostles and all who followed in the ministry.
John 13:17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. (KJV)
If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them . . . the duties they owed to Him, and to one another: love and respect for Him and each other; humility, condescension, and brotherly love, which should be in them, and of which He had given them an example. Just the mere knowledge of these things is NOT sufficient. Anyone that knows and does not, will not be approved, but he that knows and does his master's will, is greatly blessed, because he has fellowship with his Lord, and one day shall hear: "well done good and faithful servant" (Mat.25:21,23). There is a unique happiness in doing well.
John 13:18 I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me. (KJV)
I speak not of you all . . . He had said this in different words before "ye are not all clean" (Jn.13:11), for one of them was not clean.
I know whom I have chosen . . . He does not mean to apostleship, for they were all chosen to that, including Judas. He means chosen to grace and glory, to everlasting salvation and happiness. Of these He was assured that they were all clean and pure in the sight of God; they were truly regenerated by the Spirit of God.
But that the Scripture may be fulfilled . . . Or, thus the scripture is fulfilled. Christ applies to Judas what David had said of his rebellious son Absalom in Psalm 41:9, who was one of the most express symbols of this traitor. Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Jesus: (Ps.41:9; 109:8; Zec.11:12; Mat.10:4; 26:14-15,21; 27:3-4; Mk.3:19; 14:10,43; Lk.6:16; 22:3,21; Jn.6:64,70; 12:4-6; 13:2,18,26,30; 17:12; 18:2; Acts 1:16,18,25).
He that eateth bread with me . . . Judas often sat down with Jesus at the table, and ate bread with Him; and was doing so when Satan put it into his heart to betray Him.
Hath lift up his heel against me . . . lifting up his heel against him shows the ingratitude, wickedness and cruelty of him. Judas was like an ill-mannered and unruly horse, that lifts his heel and kicked the person who feeds him.
John 13:19 Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he. (KJV)
Now I tell you before it come . . . the Lord is telling the disciples before hand, that one of them should betray Him.
That when it is come to pass . . . and they had seen it fulfilled exactly, and according to this Scripture.
Ye may believe that I am he . . . He . . . the Messiah, the omniscient Lord God, who knows and declares things before they come to pass, and happen exactly as He states, which none but the eternal God can do.
John 13:20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me; and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me. (KJV)
Verily, verily, I say unto you . . . you may be assured of that what I say is Truth.
He that receiveth whomsoever I send, receiveth me; and he that receiveth me, receiveth him that sent me . . . (Mat.10:40) Why He repeats it at this time is not known. Maybe it was to show how closely united He, His Father, His apostles, and all who received them were. They who received them received Him, and they who received Him received His Father. So he who betrayed Him, betrayed God the Father. Therefore Judas, who was about to betray Jesus, was also about to betray God and His cause.
I think that Jesus adds this because Judas had been sent on missions with the rest of the disciples. He had preached and he had healed. "He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me; and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me." NO one is saved by the faith of the messenger or preacher. We are saved by hearing the Word of God (Rom.10:17) and receiving Christ into our hearts and lives.
John 13:21 When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. (KJV)
When Jesus had thus said . . . having spoken of the mission of His disciples by Him, of their reception among men.
He was troubled in spirit . . . in His soul, which shows Him to be truly Man, and that He had a human soul, which some have denied. He had passions like ours, only He was without sin. He was troubled, not at what He had said, but at what He was about to say concerning the betrayer, and not so much on His own account, because of the danger, the sorrows, and sufferings He would be exposed to, but on account of the horrific crime, and the vengeance that would come down on the criminal.
He testified and said . . . He spoke openly and plainly now with the greatest certainty.
Verily, verily, I say unto you . . . it is truth, no matter however startling and strange it may seem.
That one of you shall betray me . . . to the chief priests and elders, in order to be put to death.
John 13:22 Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake. (KJV)
Then the disciples looked one to another . . . they were surprised and overwhelmed at what was said; not suspecting anyone among them that could be guilty of such a thing.
Doubting of whom he spake . . . they could not imagine who the person was He had in mind. It seems that Judas, up to this time, had behaved well outwardly, as well as any of the other disciples. He had given no reason, by his conduct, to suspect him more than any other.
John 13:23 Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. (KJV)
Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples . . . this does not mean that he was actually lying on His bosom, but that he had a place next to Him at the table, so that possibly his head fell back on His Bosom when he spoke to Him.
Whom Jesus loved . . . this no doubt was John himself. The evangelists usually did not mention their own names when any favor or any good deed is recorded. They were humble, like their Lord, and did not seek publicity. In this case the term is more tender and honorable than any mere name. John was admitted into this special friendship, possibly because the natural disposition of our Saviour was more like the good-nature and mildness of John than any of the other disciples. We really do not know for certain. The highest honor that can be said or given to any person, is to say that Jesus loved him. But, my friend, this is an honor that all people can possess. We receive this honor, this blessing, when WE sincerely love Jesus! NO one can receive this honor without His Spirit (Jn.14:16; Rom.8:9) and without our loving Him. This blessed honor cannot be received by wealth, learning, beauty or any accomplishment or work, and certainly not rank or earthly honors. It comes ONLY by the possession of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price (1 Pet.3:4). Disciple whom Jesus loved: (Jn.13:23; 20:2; 21:7,20).
John 13:24 Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake. (KJV)
Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him . . . clearly Peter was not reclining next to Jesus. It seems that they would beckon (make signs) to one another. Peter beckons, gets John’s attention, wanting him to ask Jesus who it was that would betray Him.
That he should ask who it should be of whom he spake . . . Peter did not do this out of mere curiosity. His intention was honest. He along with the others, wanted to show their disgust and hatred of such a person, and do all that lay in their power to hinder him from doing such a monstrous evil.
John 13:25 He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it? (KJV)
He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it? . . . this a worded a little different from verse 23. It means falling back or laid his head back on the bosom of Jesus, so that he could whisper to Him privately without being heard by the others.
John 13:26 Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. (KJV)
Jesus answered, He it is to whom, I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it . . . this incident is also mentioned in Mat.26:23, Mark 14:20 and Luke 22:21, although they do not mention Christ dipping the sop. There is no doubt that all the evangelists speak of this same time. Jesus replied, by whispering, for if He had spoken out, the rest could have heard.
And when he, had dipped the sop . . . into some sort of broth, or other liquid. Sop is a piece of bread.
He gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon . . . precisely called, to distinguish him from another apostle, whose name was Judas (Lk.16:16; Acts 1:13).
John 13:27 And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly. (KJV)
And after the sop, Satan entered into him . . . after Judas had taken and eaten the sop, "Satan entered into him" . . . possessed his body, filled his mind and motivated him to firmly pursue his wicked plan. This evil spirit that entered into Judas, pressed him to commit this horrid atrocity.
Then said Jesus to him, that thou doest, do quickly . . . Jesus did not fear him, did not rebuke him for his betrayal and wickedness, and did not do anything to prevent him, although He knew fully well what was in his heart to do. This seems to express the willingness of Christ, and His willing desire to suffer and die for His people, so that they might obtain eternal life.
John 13:28 Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him. (KJV)
Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him . . . no one, except John, to whom the Lord whispered, knew that it would be Judas Iscariot who would betray Him (verse 26). So, when the Lord spoke to Judas the words: “That thou doest, do quickly,” no one at the table, except John, knew what He meant. The apostles probably did not
imagine that Jesus’ death was so near and that it would be so speedily done, as it was.
John 13:29 For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor. (KJV)
For some of them thought . . . they do not suspect that the “hour” was at hand when Judas would fulfill his intended treachery.
Because Judas had the bag . . . this “bag” was for the common supply of Christ and His disciples, and for the relief of the poor. When they heard our Saviour tell him: “That thou doest, do quickly,” they thought that which our Saviour told him to do, was a work he had undertaken to do, laying out money, either to buy some things which were needed by them for the seven days of the feast of unleavened bread; or for food for them to eat, or for sacrifices for them to offer, or that it was our Saviour's intention that he should give something to the poor (Jn.12:6). There was NO thought that our Saviour's words to Judas meant his giving Him over to fulfill the treacherous plans the devil had conceived in his heart.
That Jesus had said unto him, buy those things that we have need of against the feast . . . the feast of the Passover, which was to be two days late, and shows that this was not the Passover which Christ now ate with his disciples.
Or that he should give something to the poor . . . for whom Christ cared, and had a heart-felt concern, and for whom Judas had very little (Jn.12:6), in spite of his hypocritical pretense.
John 13:30 He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night. (KJV)
He then having, received the sop went immediately out . . . as soon as Judas ate the sop, he left at once.
And it was night . . . this condition is added, to show how eager he was to carry out his treachery. Being night, did not hinder or discourage him from setting out on his journey to Jerusalem. This makes sense . . . his work was a work of darkness, and the darkness of night was the best time for it. Night was a perfect symbol of the blackness of the crime he was going to be responsible for.
John 13:31 Therefore, when he was gone out, Jesus said, Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him. (KJV)
Therefore, when he was gone out, Jesus said . . . Christ Jesus and His true disciples are now alone together. He could now use greater freedom when speaking to them, as He would speak about His sufferings and death. He would also give them some instructions about their future conduct and behavior, and help support them under the loss of His Presence.
Now is the son of man glorified . . . by "the son of man" . . . He means Himself. He uses this title of Himself often. He speaks of that which was soon to be, as if it were already here. The Son of man shall be glorified immediately, by finishing the work that God the Father had given Him to do . . . by rising again from the dead, and declaring Himself to be the Son of God with power; by ascending up into Heaven, sitting at the right Hand of God (Mk.16:19; Lk.22:69; Acts 2:33; 7:55-56; Rom.8:34; Col.3:1; Heb.10:12; 12:2; 1 Pet.3:22), to be glorified with the same glory which He had with the Father before the world began (Jn.1:1-5; 17:5). Son of Man: (Mat.8:20; 9:6; 10:23; 11:19; 12:8,32,40; 13:37,41; 16:13,27,28; 17:9,12,22; 18:11; 19:28; 20:18,28; 24:27,30,37,39,44; 25:13,31; 26:2,24,64; Mk.2:10; 3:28,31,38; 9:9,12,31; 10:33,45; 13:26,34; 14:21,41,62; Lk. 5:24;6:5; 7:34; 9:22,26,44,56,58; 11:30: 12:8,10,40; 1722;24,26; 18:8,31; 19:10; 21:27,36; 22:22,48,69; 24:7: Jn.1:51; 3:13-14; 5:27; 6;53; 6:62; 8:28; 12:23,34; 13:31)
And God is glorified in him . . .
the glory of God was great in the salvation of His elect by the death of Christ; for hereby his wisdom and power, his truth and faithfulness, his justice and holiness, as well as his love, grace, and mercy, were glorified.
John 13:32 If God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself, and shall straightway glorify him. (KJV)
If God be glorified in him . . . the Truth is, the indisputable fact is, that all the perfections of God are glorified in Christ, by His sufferings and death on that monstrous cross, for us!
God shall also glorify him in himself . . . glory which was promised to Christ, and which He had before the world was, and for which He prays (Jn.17:5). Glory also came to Him, by the Father Himself . . . by His awesome power, in Jesus rising from the dead, setting Him at His own right hand, and crowning Him with honor and glory. ALL three Persons of the “trinity” have the exact same perfections and power.
And shall straightway glorify him . . . God the Father will do this very soon. “Straightway” means very soon, quickly, right away, immediately (Mk.1:10,18,20,21; 2:2; 3:6). He will not leave the Son of Man in the grave, nor suffer Him to see corruption (Ps.16:10). He will raise Him the third day, and glorify Him.
John 13:33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you. (KJV)
Little children, yet a little while I am with you . . . Jesus removed the disgrace and dishonor of His death, by revealing that both He and His Father would be glorified by it. He now can more freely open His mind to His disciples, and acquaint them with what lies ahead. He addresses them in the most kind, tender and loving manner, "little children" which conveys the relationship which was between them. He had great affection for them, He knew their weaknesses, and had pity on them, for they were ill equipped to bear His departure. He would now explain to them what would very shortly take place.
Ye shall seek me . . . after He is gone, they shall be in great distress, not knowing what to do, or where to go.
And as I said unto the Jews . . . in John 7:33-34.
Whither I go ye cannot come, so now I say unto you . . . there was a difference . . . the unbelieving Jews, who died in their sins, could never come where He went, these His disciples, though they could not come now, they would in the future, all of them, as well as Peter (verse 36).
John 13:34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. (KJV)
A new commandment I give unto you . . . as parents, when they their leave their children in their dying moments, give them proper instructions and orders, and lay out their dying commands on them, so too Christ, taking His leave of His apostles, gives them commands.
Love one another . . . they were brothers in the same family, children of the same Father, and fellow disciples with each other. They were to pray for one another, bear one another's burdens, forbearing and forgiving one another, admonishing each other, and building up one another in faith and holiness. Jesus calls this "a new commandment". A "new name" (Isa.62:2; Rev.2:17; 3:12), and a "new song" (Ps.33:3; 40:3; 96:1; 98:1; 144:9; 149:1; Isa.42:10; Rev.5:9; 14:3), means a better one, a more excellent one, a new interpretation of it, more clearly explained than before.
As I have loved you . . . the commandment of loving one another is not a new commandment. We find it way back in the law of Moses (Lev.19:18), and often in the New Testament (Jn.15:17; Eph.5:2; 1 Jn.2:7; 4:21; 2 Jn.1:6), so in reality, it is NOT a new commandment. Jesus calls it a new commandment, either because of the excellence of it, as the word new seems to be taken (Ps.33:3; Isa.65:17; Mat.26:29), or because it is expand upon in the Gospel in a new manner, and urged by a new example of their Lord and Master.
As I have loved you, that ye also love one another . . . Christ has loved His people freely, in spite of all their unworthiness and ungratefulness. He says that is the way we should love one another. I have always taught that being a “Christian” is NOT easy! Loving a disagreeable person is NOT easy. Loving an enemy is NOT easy. Forgiving someone is NOT easy. BUT . . . Jesus did it, and IF we are to have Him as our Example, we must do it too. IF we are to walk as He walked, we must love as He loved!
John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (KJV)
By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another . . . a disciple of Christ bears His Name “CHRISTian”. If we are to be worthy of Him, we must love as He loved! We must love one another! In one sense, we can be considered “trees” in this life. What kind of “fruit” are you bearing? (Lk.6:43-44).
John 13:36 Simon Peter said unto him, Lord, whither goest thou? Jesus answered him, Whither I go, thou canst not follow me now; but thou shalt follow me afterwards. (KJV)
Simon Peter said unto him Lord, whither goest thou? . . . we might think that Peter would have paid attention to what Christ had just said, but he did not. His conduct and writings reveal that he had the utmost regard for the commandment of love, and that he often stressed it and most fervently practiced it.
Jesus answered him, whither I go thou canst not follow me now . . . It seemed that here, all that was on his mind was: “Whither I go, thou canst not follow me”, and in verse 33: “Whither I go, ye cannot come”. Peter was very uneasy about these words, and wanted very much to know what Jesus meant. Peter could not follow Him; for Peter’s time of suffering and death was not yet come. Our Lord had some work for Peter to do first; he must feed the flock of God (Jn.21:15-17).
But thou shall follow me afterwards . . . Jesus tells Peter that when his time was come, and his work done, that he would follow Jesus by dying for Him, and would follow Jesus into His Kingdom and glory, and be for ever with Him, as would ALL the saints that follow Christ.
John 13:37 Peter said unto him, Lord, why cannot I follow thee now? I will lay down my life for thy sake. (KJV)
Peter said unto him . . . Peter did not understand the Lord’s answer and was not satisfied with it, so he bluntly continues . . .
Lord, why cannot I follow thee now? . . . WHY can’t I go with You? What is the reason that I cannot follow You now? Is it inaccessible? Are there too many impossible difficulties? Is the road too rough? Peter was sure that the roughness of the road, or the dangers of it would not discourage him. He really did think that he could overcome the greatest dangers and difficulties, and follow Him where ever He went.
I will lay down my life for thy sake . . . Peter truly did think that he would die for Jesus. I do not think that he had a moment of doubt when he said this. How strong and deceiving the old devil is!
John 13:38 Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice. (KJV)
Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake . . . Jesus does not question Peter's sincerity. He knew what was in Peter’s heart! Jesus was questioning Peter’s strength, and it is as if Jesus was saying: “You do not know what you are saying.”
Verily, verily, I say unto thee, the cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice . . . I will bring other Scripture verses from the other evangelists.
Matthew 26:34 Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. (KJV)
Mark 14:30-31 And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. 31 But he spake the more vehemently, If I should die with thee, I will not deny thee in any wise. Likewise also said they all. (KJV)
Luke 22:31-34 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: 32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. 33 And he said unto him, Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death. 34 And he said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me. (KJV)
Mark 14:72 And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept. (KJV)
I have SO often thought of these words when I think of Peter: “I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.” I can actually feel, deep within me, Peter’s agony, when he heard that rooster crow. My friend, we ALL sin, including the beloved apostles of that day, and the most godly men and women today. We have good intentions, but we slip and fall. The wonder of it all is that He forgives us when we repent (1 Jn.1:8-9). Thank You Jesus!
Peter’s denial: (Mat.26:69-75; Mk.14:30,66-72; Lk.22:54-62; Jn.18:17,25-27; 1 Cor.10:12).
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