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Bible Commentaries

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

John 15



Other Authors
Verse 1

I am. See on John 14:6

true = real. App-175.

vine. Three trees are used in the N.T. to teach important lessons. The fig is used by our Lord to show the causes of the doom of Israel. In Romans 11, Paul applies the figure of the olive tree also to Israel, and utters a solemn warning to the Gentiles; i.e. all the Gentiles upon whom My name is called (Acts 15:17), now grafted in in Israel"s place. The vine speaks of Israel"s temporal and spiritual blessings (Psa 80and Isa 5). That vine failed. Henceforth there is no blessing for Israel as such till He comes Who is the true Israel (Isaiah 49:8), as He is the true vine. Then shall Isaiah 27:6 be fulfilled. The interpretation of this passage is for Israel alone, though many blessed lessons may be drawn from it, by way of application. Through reading the "Church" into these verses, great confusion has resulted and grievous distress been caused to the people of God.

My Father. See John 2:16.

Verse 2

branch. Greek. klema. Only here, and verses: John 15:4, John 15:5, John 15:6.

in. Greek en. App-104. not. Greek. me. App-106.

taketh away = raiseth. Greek. airo. Occurs 102 times, and translates more than forty times, take up, lift up, &c. Take away is a secondary meaning, see the Lexicons. Compare Matthew 4:6; Matthew 16:24. Luke 17:13. Revelation 10:5; Revelation 18:21, and Psalms 24:7, Psalms 24:9 (Septuagint)

purgeth = cleanseth. Greek kathairo. Occurs only here, and Hebrews 10:2. Of the two kinds of branches, the fruitless and the fruitful, He raises the former from grovelling on the ground, that it may bear fruit, and cleanses the latter that it may bear more fruit.

that = in order that. Greek. hina.

bring forth = bear. Same word as in the two previous clauses.

Verse 3

Now = Already. clean. Greek. katharos. Compare John 13:10, John 13:11, the only other occurance in John, and the verb kathairo in John 15:2.

through = on account of. App-104

word. Greek. logos. See on Mark 9:32.

unto = to

Verse 4

Abide. Greek. meno. See p. 1511.

and I. Read "I also [abide] in you". Omit the full stop, and supply "for".

cannot = is not (App-105) able to.

of. Greek. apo. App-104.

except = if . . . not. Greek. ean me. App-118 and App-105.

no more = even so neither. Greek houtos oude.

Verse 5

without. Greek choris, apart from. Compare John 1:3 and John 20:7 (by itself), the only other occurance in John.

nothing. Greek. ou ouden, a double negative.

Verse 6

If a man . . . not. Greek. ean me tis. App-118and App-123. See "except" in John 15:4. It is no longer "you "or "ye" but "any one", speaking generally.

is cast forth . . . is withered. (Both verbs are in the Aorist) = was cast forth, &c., perhaps referring to the fig-tree (Matthew 21:19, and App-156). Compare Matthew 13:6.

a = the.

men = they. Compare Matthew 13:30, Matthew 13:39, Matthew 13:41.

into. Greek. eis. App-104.

the fire. No art. in received text, but added by T Tr. A WI R, making it emphatic. See Matthew 13:40, Matthew 13:42. Revelation 20:15.

Verse 7

If. App-118.

words sayings. Greek rhema. See Mark 9:32.

ye shall ask. All the texts read "ask". Compare John 14:13, John 14:14. Greek aiteo. App-134.

will. Greek. thelo. App-102.

be done = come to pass. Greek. ginomai.

Verse 8

Herein = In (Greek. en. App-104.) this.

is . . . glorified = was . . . glorified (Aorist). Greek doxazo. See p. 1511 and Compare John 13:31.

that = in order that (Greek. hina), showing the Father"s purpose. Compare John 11:15, John 11:50; John 12:33; John 13:1-3.

so shall ye be = and (that) ye may become. Greek ginomai. See on "done "in John 15:7.

Verse 9

As = Even as. Greek kathos.

the Father. See on John 1:14.

hath loved = loved. Aor. as in second clause. App-135.

continue = abide. Greek. meno, as in John 15:4.

love. App-135., and see p. 1511.

Verse 10

keep. Greek. tereo. Compare John 8:51, John 8:2, John 8:55; John 14:15, John 14:21, John 14:23, John 14:24.

Verse 11

My joy = the joy that is mine (emph.) Three times in John, here, John 3:29, and John 17:13.

remain = abide. Greek meno as above, but all the texts read "be".

your joy. As He gave them His peace (John 14:27), so He seeks to make them partakers of His joy.

might be full = may be fulfilled: i.e. filled full.

Verse 12

My commandment. My charge to you. As the Father"s charge to Me (John 15:10) so My charge to you. Compare John 13:34.

as = even as. have

loved = loved, as in John 15:9.

Verse 13

no man = no one. Greek. oudeis.

a man = one. Greek. tis. App-123.

lay down. Greek. tithemi, literally place; translated "giveth" in John 10:11; "lay down "in John 10:15, John 10:17, John 10:18; John 13:37, John 13:38; 1 John 3:16.

life. App-110.

for = in behalf of. Greek. huper. App-104.

friends(Greek. philos, noun of phileo. App-135.) = those whom one loves. Compare John 13:1. Romans 5:6-8.

Verse 14

whatsoever. The texts read "the things which".

Verse 15

Henceforth . . . not = No longer. Greek. ouketi, compound of ou.

servants = bondservants.

knoweth. App-132.

not. Greek. ou. App-105.

lord. Greek kurios. App-98.

of = with. Greek para. App-104.

have made known = made known (Aor.)

Verse 16

y e have not, &c. = Not that ye chose Me, &c. Figure of speech Antimetabole. App-6. Thus reversing the custom of the Jews for the disciple to choose his own master. See Dr. John Lightfoot, Works, vol. iii. p. 175.

have chosen = chose.

ordained = placed. Greek. tithemi, as in John 15:13. Compare 1 Timothy 1:12; 1 Timothy 2:7. 2 Timothy 1:11. Hebrews 1:2.

go = go forth.

ask of = ask, as in John 15:7.

Verse 18

If. App-118.

world. Greek. kosmos. See John 14:17 and App-129.

ye know = know (imperative mood) Greek. ginosko. App-132.

hated = hath hated. Therefore continues to hate.

Verse 19

of = out of. Greek ek. App-104.

would love. Would love and continue loving (Imperfect). Greek. phileo. App-135. have

chosen = chose.

out of. Greek. ek, as above.

therefore = on account of (Greek. dia. App-104. John 15:2) this.

Verse 20

Remember. Referring to John 13:16.

have persecuted = persecuted (Aor.) Greek. dioko = to pursue (opposite to pheugo, to flee), here with malignant intent. It is translated thirty-one times "persecute", and thirteen times "follow", &c. in a good sense. Compare Acts 9:4. In Luke 11:49 and 1 Thessalonians 2:18 a stronger word, ekdioko, is used.

also, &c. = persecute you also.

have kept = kept (Aor.)

saying. Greek logos. Same as "word" above, and in John 3:25.

Verse 21

unto. The received text has the dative, but all the texts read eis (App-104.)

for My name"s sake = on account of (Greek. dia. App-104. John 15:2) My name. See Acts 4:7, Acts 4:17, Acts 4:18; Acts 5:40, Acts 5:41; Acts 9:14, Acts 9:16, Acts 9:21; 1 Peter 4:14, 1 Peter 4:16, where all the texts read "name" instead of "behalf".

Him That sent Me. See on John 14:24.

Verse 22

had . . . come, &c. = came and spake.

had not had sin = would not have (imperf.) sin, i.e. in rejecting Him as the Messiah. Figure of speech Heterasis. App-6. sin. App-128.

now. Greek. nun. See John 12:27.

no = not (App-105) any.

cloke = excuse. Greek. prophasis. Occurs seven times, rendered "pretence" in Matthew 23:14. Mark 12:40. Philippians 1:1, Philippians 1:18; "shew", Luke 20:47; " colour", Acts 27:30, and "cloke", here and 1 Thessalonians 2:5.

for = concerning. Greek. peri. App-104.

Verse 24

among. Greek. en. App-104.

none other man = no one else. Greek oudeis altos. App-124. Compare John 5:36; John 9:30.

they had not, &c. Same as in John 15:22. Notice the different negatives me and ou in the two clauses of the verse as in John 15:22.

seen. Greek horao. App-133.

Verse 25

fulfilled. See note on "full" in John 15:11.

their law. Compare John 8:17.

They hated, &c. Quoted from Psalms 35:19 with Psalms 69:4. Compare also Psalms 109:3 with Psalms 119:161.

without a cause. Greek dorean. Occurs eight times; translated "freely" in Matthew 10:8. Romans 3:24. 2 Corinthians 11:7. Revelation 21:6; Revelation 22:17, "in vain", Galatians 2:21 "for nought", 2 Thessalonians 3:8.

Verse 26

the Comforter. See John 14:16.

is come = shall have come.

send. Greek. pempo. App-174.

from. Greek. para. App-104.

the Spirit of truth. See on John 14:17.

proceedeth = goeth forth.

he. Greek. ekeinos, as in John 14:26.

shall = will; one of the many instances where both Authorized Version and Revised Version blur the sense of their translation by the misuse of "shall "and "will".

testify = bear witness. Greek. martureo. See note on John 1:7.

of = concerning. Greek. peri. App-104.

Verse 27

shall bear witness = testify, or are testifying (present).

ye have been = ye are.

with. Greek. meta. App-104.

from the beginning. See note on John 8:44.


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Bibliography Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 15:4". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". 1909-1922.

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