The glory of the Messiah, 13:1-20:31

1. The farewell discourses, 13:1-17-26

ix] the hatred of the world


The farewell discourse continues with Jesus warning his disciples that they will face the same difficulties that he has faced in dealing with the world.


The attitude of the world to Jesus' disciples will be one of disregard, even hostility at times; "if the master has been called Beelzebub, how much more his household", Matt.10:25.


i] Context: See 3:1-17.


ii] Structure: The hatred of the world:

The cause of persecution, v18-25;

Like master, like servant, v18-21;

The world stands guilty of rejecting God's love, v22-25;

The testimony of the Paraclete, v26-27.

The practical consequences of persecution, v1-4;

Forewarned is forearmed.


Physical abuse


iii] Interpretation:

The focus of Jesus' discourse in the previous passage was mutual love within the brotherhood and the brotherhood with Jesus. Now the focus moves outward to the environment within which the brotherhood must survive. The love of the brotherhood will inevitably correspond with the hatred of the world. As the world hated Jesus so it will hate those who are his.

Jesus, at this point in his discourse, reminds his disciples that in the same way the world (human society apart from God) persecuted / hated him, so it will persecute / hate his followers, v18. If the disciples were to align themselves with the world, then the world would respond positively toward them, but by aligning themselves with Jesus, the world will respond with hostility, v19-20. The source of this hostility is ignorance, an ignorance of God the creator, v21. Such a sin is inexcusable. The world would have remained ignorant of this sin but for the ministry of Jesus, both his words and his deeds, v22-24. Perfect divine love was operative within the world, but the world rejected the Christ and in rejecting Jesus rejected the one who sent him - and this without reason, as prophesied, v25. This testimony to broken humanity will continue through the Spirit of truth, the Advocate, and through Jesus' disciples, v26-27. Being forewarned is being forearmed; Jesus' disciples will better stand against the world's hostility knowing what is in store for them, 16:1. They will find themselves ostracized, violated by those who think they are acting out of some kind of moral / divine imperative, v2. Yet, their behavior is driven by ignorance, v3. Knowing all this will help the disciples better handle whatever befalls them. There was no need to warn the disciples earlier, but now that Jesus is about to leave them, the time has come to know what lies ahead, v4.


What does John mean when he uses the word "the world": ὁ κοσμος [ος]? John tends to use the word with the sense of "the world of men and human affairs", Barrett, or sometimes a touch stronger, "human society as it organizes itself apart from God", Hunter, or even stronger still, "the people who are aligned with the power of evil in opposition to God", TH. Context determines whether the word is being used in a neutral, or a negative sense. The world under "the ruler of this world" will be overcome by Christ and judged by him. This "Godless world", Peterson, "hates" Christ and those who follow him. On the other hand, Jesus came to save the world, rather than judge it, because God loves the world.


iv] Exposition: A simple exposition of this passage may be found in the linked pew-level Sermon Notes.

Text - 15:18

The world's rejection of God's gracious revelation in Christ, 15:18-16:4: i] The cause of persecution, v18-25; a) Like master, like servant, v18-21. "Hatred toward Jesus' disciples springs from hatred of Jesus himself, and ... this in turn has been the world's response to the revelation that he is and brings", Carson.

ει + ind. "if" - if [the world hates you]. Introducing a conditional clause 1st. class where the proposed condition is assumed to be true; "if, as is the case, ..... then ....." Given that the condition is real, stating what is true, the sense my better be expressed "the world will hate you, but you must remember that it hated me first."

ὁτι "[keep in mind] that" - [know] that. Introducing a dependent statement of perception expressing what the disciples should know; "Just remember that they hated me first", CEV.

μεμισηκεν [μισεω] perf. "hated" - it has hated [me]. The perfect expressing the sense, hated in the past and continues to hate. The word "hate" is being used, not in the sense of an emotion, but in an active sense, of opposition, often strident and irrational. "You will find your secular community irrationally opposed to you, but remember this, I felt their opposition long before you." "If the world rejects you, know that it rejected me before it rejected you."

πρωτον adv. "first" - first. The superlative adjective is used as a comparative temporal adverb, first in time. The sense is "the world hated me before it hated you."


"If the disciples were of the world they would be accepted by enemies of the gospel. But Christ chose them out of the world to belong to life in another dimension, to God himself. Those who refuse to hear God's word must inevitably reject his spokesmen", Pfitzner.

ει + imperf. ind. ...... αν + imperf. ind. "if" - Introducing a conditional clause 2nd class, contrary to fact, where the condition is assumed not to be true; "if, as is not the case, ..... then ........".

εκ + gen. "belonged to [the world]" - [you were] from [the world]. Expressing source / origin; often with the sense of "birth from", so the NIV "belonged to." "If you lived on the world's terms, the world would love you as one of its own", Peterson.

το ιδιον adj. "as its own" - [the world would have loved] the one's own. The neuter is used of a collective, "that which belongs to it", Barrett.

δε "-" - but/and. Transitional, here to a counterpoint; "but"; "yet (because) the world is not your home", Cassirer.

ὁτι "as it is" - that = because [you are not from the world]. Here probably serving to introduce a causal clause; "but because you are not of the world", ESV.

αλλ "but" - Strong adversative in a counterpoint construction, "not .... but ....", as NIV; "but rather I called you out of the world."

εγω pro. "I" - Emphatic by use and position.

εξελεξαμην [εκλεγομαι] aor. "have chosen" - chose [you out of the world]. The sense of "chosen" probably leans more toward "called / invited" rather than "chosen / selected." God's sovereign will expresses itself in the formation of a people for himself, an elect, chosen people, whose membership graciously rests on the faithfulness of Christ appropriated through faith. The disciples are not alien to the world, but are drawn from the world "and as a result you are not part of the world", TH..

δια τουτο "that is why" - because of this = therefore [the world hates you]. As Runge notes in "Discourse Grammar in the Greek New Testament" this construction is often used to introduce an important preposition; "therefore the world hates you", ESV.


Disciples now have the status of "friends", 15:15, and so are not greater than Jesus, so Ridderbos. "The emphasis in chapter 13 is on imitating the humility of Jesus, while here it relates to the necessity of sharing his fate", TH.

του λοου [ος] gen. "[remember] what" - [remember] the word. Genitive of direct object after the verb "to remember."

ὑμιν dat. pro. "you" - [remember the word which i said] to you. Dative of indirect object. "Remember the word I said to you", NRSV. "Remember" in the sense of "think about what I told you", TH.

οὗ gen. pro. "-" - which. Genitive by attraction.

του κυριου [ος] gen. "master" - [the slave is not greater] the lord [of him]. The genitive is ablative, of comparison; "greater than his master." This particular "word / teaching" is found in 13:16.

ει "if" - if [they persecuted, pursued me]. Introducing a conditional clause 1st. class where the condition is assumed to be true; "if, as is the case, they persecuted me, then they will also persecute you."

και "also" - and [you they will persecute]. Adjunctive, as NIV; "also".

ει "if" - if, as is the case. A second conditional clause, 1st. class, as above. This clause, at first glance, seems to be positive and so the two conditional clauses together may give the sense "if there are some who persecute the disciples, there will also be some who will respond to their message", TH; so also Barrett, Morris, .... But it seems more likely that both conditional clauses are negative, ie., both clauses are synonymously parallel rather than contrastive, so Brown, Dodd, ...; "They will respond to your message the same why they responded to mine", Barclay - with opposition / disbelief!

ετηρησαν [τηρεω] "they obeyed" - they kept, guarded [the word of me, they will also keep yours]. "Keep" in the sense of "keep true to."


"The world will hate and persecute the disciples, because it hates their Lord, and does not believe that he was sent by God", Fenton.

αλλα "-" - but. Westcott treats the logic of this adversative as follows: "Persecution and rejection were inevitable, but they were not really to be feared. The disciples could bear them, because they sprang from ignorance of God, and so indirectly witnessed that the disciples knew Him."

ταυτα pro. "this way" - [all] these things [they will do to you]. Accusative direct object of the verb "to do." The "things" refers to persecution; "people will do to you exactly what they did to me", CEV.

δια + acc. "because" - because of. Introducing a causal clause, as NIV; "on account of my name ("your association with me")", ESV, so Barrett.

το ονομα [α ατος] "[my] name" - the name [of me]. "Name" in the sense of person, and in respect to Christ, the authority of his person. In John, association with Christ's person is in mind; "because of your connection with me", Barclay.

ὁτι "for [they did not know]" - because [they do not know]. Here introducing a causal clause.

τον πεμψαντα [πεμπω] aor. part. "the one who sent [me]" - the one having sent [me]. The participle serves as a substantive, accusative direct object of the negated verb "to know." Referring to the Father.


b) The world stands guilty of rejecting God's love, v22-25. In Jesus' coming, the world's sinful state is exposed. The sense of "sin" here is often treated as "guilty of sin"; "no sin would be found attaching to them", Cassirer. But as Carson notes, Jesus is not suggesting that somehow, prior to his coming, people were guiltless, rather that "by coming and speaking to them Jesus incited the most central and controlling of sins: rejection of God's gracious revelation, rebellion against God, decisive preference for darkness rather than light." So also Kostenberger. "They would not be guilty of this terrible sin of rejecting me if I had not come to teach them of the Father, but, now they have no excuse for their sin", Junkins.

ει μη + aor. ind. "if [I had [not] come" - if [i did not come and speak]. Introducing a conditional clause 2nd. class / contrary to fact / unreal, where the condition is assumed to be not true; "if, as is not the case, I did not come and speak to them, then they would not have sin." Unlike v19, αν is not present in the apodosis, although the verb is past tense indicative. Koine Gk. does not always include αν in the apodosis of a 2nd. class conditional clause.

αυτοις dat. pro. "to them" - to them [they would not have sin]. Dative of indirect object.

δε "but" - but/and. Transitional, here to an adversative point, as NIV.

νυν adv. "now" - now. This temporal adverb is sometimes idiomatic, with only a slight temporal sense, "but as it is", Moffatt; "but now in fact", TH, Barrett

προφασιν [ις εως] "excuse" - they do [not] have a cloak, excuse, pretext, false motive. Accusative direct object of the verb "to have." Since Jesus has come into the world and proclaimed the gospel, the world cannot claim an excuse for "sin"; sin in the sense of "disbelief in him / conscious and deliberate rejection of the light", Barrett, 16:9. "They can offer no excuse for their sin."

περι + gen. "for [their sin]" - about [the sin of them]. Reference, "with reference to, about, concerning", or better, representation, "for the sake of." The sense "[a cloak] around" is possible, although usually when περι means"around" it is followed by an accusative. "Their sin" is probably "their state of sin", although often viewed as a subjective genitive, "the sin which they do."


Again Jesus reveals the close identification he has with the Father; if you hate Jesus you hate the Father; "hate" in the sense of strident and irrational opposition / rejection

ὁ μισων [μισεω] pres. part. "whoever hates" - the one hating [me also hates the father of me]. The participle serves as a substantive, nominative subject of the verb "to hate"; "the one who hates." Often translated as an indefinite relative clause, as NIV, or better "everyone who hates me", CEV; "Hate me, hate my Father - it's all the same", Peterson.


Jesus goes on to explain his comment in v23.

ει "if" - if, as is not the case, [i did not do the works among them which no other did, then they would not have sin]. Conditional clause 2nd. class, as v22.

εν + dat. "among [them]" - in = among [them]. Here expressing association; "among".

τα εργα [ον] "the works" - Accusative direct object of the verb "to do." Referring to Jesus' messianic signs / the gospel in signs: the lame walking, the deaf hearing, the blind seeing, the dead raised and the gospel of God's grace proclaimed to the lost. Such leaves those who see without excuse.

ἁμαρτιαν [α] "guilty of sin" - [they would not have] sin. Accusative direct object of the verb "to have." As already noted, rather than not "guilty of sin" in general, the issue is more likely that had Jesus not come they would not be guilty of rejecting divine revelation / of the offer of divine grace in Christ, cf., "sin", v22. But Jesus did come, and did so with messianic signs, and, other than a remnant, Israel rejected God's act of grace in Christ. By rejecting ("hated", cf., v18) Christ they rejected the Father.

δε νυν "as it is" - but now. The adversative use of the conjunction + the temporal adverb is not so much temporal as an adversative statement of fact; "but now in fact", TH, as in v22.

και .... και ...... και ...... και "[they have seen] and yet [they have hated] both [...] and" - [they have] both [seen] and [have hated] both [me] and [the father of me]. The correlative use of the conjunction would seem to imply that the object of "seen" is the same as "hated", namely "me and my Father", although it makes more sense for the object of "seen" to be an assumed, "they have seen the works no one else did", so Barrett, Schnackenburg. Note that both "have seen" and "have hated" take a perfect tense indicating ongoing disbelief and rejection by Israel.


The irrational hatred of the world toward God's messiah (the world of unbelief now inhabited by "the Jews") is prophesied in scripture. Given this warning, the condemnation of those who hate without reason is reasonable.

αλλ [αλλα] "but" - Adversative, as NIV, although evidencing short-talk; "The fact that they have seen and still have hated is almost incredible; however ....", Brown / Bultman.

"this is" - The sentence is elliptical; "But this happened in order that ....", Ridderbos, so Morris, Kostenberger, Barrett, Carson, Brown, ... "Rather, it was so that ....."

ἱνα + subj. "to" - that [the word, having been written in the law of them, may be fulfilled]. The Gk. syntax at this point is unclear, especially the seemingly elliptical construction αλλ ἱνα, "but that." It is possible that ἱνα here is imperatival, "but let the word be fulfilled"; "but the word that is written in their Law must be fulfilled", ESV. It seems more likely that it introduces a purpose clause, "in order that", or better, hypothetical result, "so that"; "Still, it had to be, so that these words written down in their law might be brought to fulfillment", Cassirer.

πληρωθῃ [πληροω] aor. pas. subj. "fulfill" - In the sense of bring to completion, complete, "come true", TH; "they have verified the truth of their own scriptures", Peterson.

γεγραμμενος [γραφω] perf. pas. part. "what is written" - having been written. The participle is adjectival, attributive, limiting "word"; "the word which has been written."

εν + dat. "in" - Local, expressing space.

τῳ νομῳ [ος] dat. "[their] law" - the law [of them]. Here used of the scriptures as a whole rather than the five books of Moses / the Pentateuch, so "Bible".

ὁτι "-" - that. Here serving to introduce a dependent statement, direct quotation, what is written.

δωρεαν adv. "without reason" - [they hated me] freely. They hated / rejected freely without having a reason / cause to hate / reject. So, they hated "without a cause", ESV, "for no cause", Moffatt, "for no reason at all", Cassirer, "without reason", NJB.


ii] The testimony of the Paraclete in the face of persecution, v26-27. "Over against the refusal to acknowledge him Jesus now posits as the great counterweight that will vindicated him against the world, the coming and work of the Paraclete, the Spirit of truth, cf., 14:7", Ridderbos. The world's hatred of the disciples is now driven by a hatred of the Spirit of Christ.

ὁταν + subj. "When" - Serving to introduce an indefinite temporal clause, treated as definite.

ὁ παρακλητος [ος] "the Advocate" - the paraclete = helper, advocate, comforter [comes]. Nominative subject of the verb "to come." See "another Counselor" 14:16.

ὃν "whom" - Accusative direct object of the verb "to send." The masculine pronoun is to be expected, but note that in 14:26 the neuter is used for "whom the Father will send in my name."

εγω pro. "I" - Nominative subject of the verb "to send", emphatic by position and use. Note that in 14:26 The Father sends the Spirit, but here Jesus sends the Spirit.

ὑμιν dat. "[will send] to you" - Dative of indirect object.

παρα + gen. "from [the Father]" - Spacial; expressing source; "from beside".

της αληθειας [α] gen. "[the Spirit] of truth" - The genitive is adjectival, possibly attributive, limiting "Spirit", "the Spirit who comes from the Father and reveals what is true", CEV, but see 14:17

pro. "who" - which. An interesting use of the neuter, but note that John then uses the masculine pronoun εκεινος for "he will testify about me." The break in concord indicates that Jesus is speaking of the Spirit in personal terms; a he and not an it. The use of the neuter is probably explained by the fact that Jesus is speaking about the mission of the Spirit, rather than the Spirit himself. Probably best treated as introducing a parenthesis, bracketed; "When my Helper / Friend comes, whom I will send you, (which mission proceeds from the Father = which mission is orchestrated by the Father), he will bear witness about me"

εκπορευεται [εκπορευομαι] pres. "goes out" - proceeds. Probably in a figurative sense, of something flowing out, spreading out from. If the mission of the Father is in mind then the plan, programme, orchestration, organization of the mission is probably in mind. This verse, and particularly this word, split the Western and Eastern branches of Christendom. The Eastern creeds state that the Spirit proceeds from the Father, while the Western creeds add "and the Son." The problem stems from the exegesis of this verse. It shouldn't be read as the NIV, "the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father." "The Spirit of truth" stands in apposition to "Advocate"; "the Helper / Friend" is "the Spirit who reveals what is true." The parenthetical statement simply identifies the architect of the mission. So, Jesus is not actually identifying the source of the Spirit. Of course, the issue itself is important and the Western creeds are surely right in emphasizing the doctrine of the Trinity when speaking of the source of the Spirit.

παρα + gen. "from [the Father]" - Either spacial / source, "from beside", or instrumental, "by".

περι + gen. "about [me]" - [that one will testify] concerning [me]. Reference; "about, concerning."


και ... δε "and [you] also" - and [you] and = also. The και is adjunctive with δε transitional, coordinative. "You" in addition to the Spirit "You too", but possibly "And, moreover, it is you who must do and bear the witness of the Spirit", Hoskyns.

ὑμεις pro. "you" - Emphatic by use and position.

μαρτυρειτε [μαρτυρεω] ind. / imp. "must testify" - testify, bear witness. The verb can be either indicative or imperative, but either way the divine intention is that Christ's disciples bear witness to him.

ὁτι "for" - that = because. Introducing a causal clause explaining why the disciples are to bear witness to Christ, namely, because that has been their task since joining with Christ at the beginning of his ministry, or possibly because their presence with Christ from the beginning of his ministry gives them the qualifications to serve as eye witnesses, so Pfitzner.

εστε [ειμι] pres. "you have been" - you are. The durative present tense indicating a continued relationship between the disciples and Jesus. The perfect tense best expresses this sense, as NIV, and so most commentators except Bultman.

μετ [μετα] + gen. "with [me]" - Expressing association.

απ [απο] + gen. "from [the beginning]" - Temporal use of the preposition; "You are in this with me from the start", Peterson. Not "from the beginning of the world", but "from the beginning of Jesus' ministry."


iii] The practical consequences of persecution, v1-4. "Suffering can end up being a stumbling-block to faith, but forewarned is forearmed", Pfitzner, v1.

ταυτα pro. "all this" - these things. Accusative direct object of the verb "to say." Presumably anaphoric / referring back to 15:18-27 rather than cataphoric / referring forward.

ὑμιν dat. "[I have told] you" - [i have said] to you. Dative of indirect object.

ἱνα + subj. "so that" - that [you may not be caused to stumble]. Introducing a purpose clause; "in order that ..." The sense of the passive verb "be caused to stumble" is "to let oneself be led into sin / fall away", BDAG. "My purpose in saying these things to you has been to make certain that you should not be shaken in your faith", Cassirer.


Shunning, and even murder, are possible consequences of following Jesus. "For all Jesus' followers, fellowship with him will mean the loss of other fellowships", Pfitzner.

αλλ "in fact" - [they will put you away from synagogues / excommunicate] but. Usually adversative, but here expressing an accessory idea, "furthermore / not only that, but"; "an additional point in an emphatic way", BDF.448.6.

ἱνα + subj. "-" - [an hour coming] that. Here epexegetic, explaining / specifying the nature of the time that is coming, namely, a time when disciples will face excommunication. Zerwick's suggestion that ἱνα is standing in for the temporal construction του + inf. or the Aramaic di, a temporal relative, in Gk. or ὁτε, is unlikely, so Barrett.

ὁ αποκτεινας [αποκτεινω] aor. part. "[anyone] who kills" - [all] the ones having killed [you]. If we take the adjective πας, "all", as a substantive, nominative subject of the verb "to suppose", = "everyone", the articular participle would be classified as adjectival, attributive, limiting "everyone", as NIV.

προσφερειν [προσφερω] pres. inf. "[will think] they are offering" - [may think] to offer. Introducing a dependent statement of perception expressing what they think, namely, "that they are performing a service for God". This statement is ironical, but possibly Jesus / John is noting "the sincerity of motive which prompted Jewish opposition to Christianity", Barrett.

λατρειαν [α] "a service" - The word is used of serving God. It may be used of worshipping God, although the word πρσκυνεω is normally used of "worship", of devotion, reverential fear toward God, of doing obeisance in the presence of God. That "they are doing God a favor", CEV.

τῳ θεω [ος] dat. "to God" - Dative of indirect object / dative of interest, advantage.


Expulsion from the Synagogue, even martyrdom, however well intentioned, derives from ignorance of the Father, as well as of Jesus.

ὁτι "because" - [and these things they will do] because. Introducing a causal clause explaining why "they do these things."

ουκ ......... ουδε aor. "they have] not [known the Father] or [me]" - [they did] not [know the father] nor [me]. A negated comparative construction; "neither ...... nor ....} "Have not come to know", Bruce. The word "know" tends toward an intimate relational sense when used of persons, similar to the idea of a husband "knowing" his wife; "they will do these things because they never have experienced a relationship, either with me, or with the Father", Junkins.


"When the time of persecution comes the disciples will remember that Jesus had foretold it, and it will therefore not weaken but strengthen their faith", Barrett. Many commentators argue that the next topic, the function of the Helper / Friend, begins at 4b, continuing through to v11 / 15, so Westcott, Lindars, Carson, Kostenberger, Brown, ....

αλλα "-" - but. Probably not adversative, but a similar usage as in v2; "Moreover, ...", Cassirer.

ὑμιν dat. "[I have told] you" - [i have said these things] to you. Dative of indirect object.

ἱνα + subj. "so that" - that. Introducing a purpose clause; "in order that ..."

ὁταν + subj. "when" - when [comes]. Serving to introduce an indefinite temporal clause, treated as definite.

αυτων pro. "their" - [the hour] of them. The "hour / time" is "their hour." This strange use of the possessive pronoun has prompted its removal from some texts, but the time is indeed "their time"; "this is your hour", Brown, the time when the persecutors can ply their trade against God and his people. "It is their hour because it will appear that the oppressors have the upper hand", Carson.

ἡ ὡρα [α] "time" - hour. Surely the time of persecution, the time when the oppressors have the upper hand, but many commentators see a reference to Christ's crucifixion here, the time when the enemies of Christ celebrate their triumph over Jesus.

αυτων gen. "-" - [you might remember] them. Genitive of direct object after the verb "to remember." The "them" is "this / these things", namely, the persecution spoken of in v2 / 15:18-16:4..

ὁτι "that" - Introducing a dependent statement of perception expressing what the disciples might / will remember, namely, Jesus' warning about persecution.

ὑμιν dat. "[I warned] you [about them]" - [i said these things] to you. Dative of indirect object.

ταυτα "this" - [but] these things [i did not say to you]. Emphatic by position. "These things" = warnings concerning persecution.

εξ [εκ] + gen. "from [the beginning]" - from [beginning]. Temporal use of the preposition identifying the starting point in time and onward covering Jesus' ministry in Palestine. "I did not tell you all of this during the years of my ministry because ..."

ὁτι "because" - Introducing a causal clause explaining why Jesus did not speak to the disciples, during the three years of his ministry, regarding the persecution they would one day face, "because" he "could largely protect them by absorbing all opposition himself, thus deflecting it from them", Carson.

μεθ [μετα] + gen. "[I was] with [you]" - Expressing association, as NIV. An example of short-talk: because "he was the prime target of hostility and protected his disciples", Kostenberger, as Carson above, also Brown, Morris, ...; "they were then under Jesus' immediate protection", Barrett.


John Introduction



[Pumpkin Cottage]