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Bible Commentaries

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

John 20

 

 

Verse 1

The first day of the week = On the first (day) of the Sabbaths (plural) Greek. Te mia ton sabbaton. The word "day" is rightly supplied, as mia is feminine, and so must agree with a feminine noun understood, while sabbaton is neuter. Luke 24:1 has the same. Matthew reads, "towards dawn on the first (day) of the Sabbaths", and Mark (John 16:2), "very early on the first (day) of the Sabbaths". The expression is not a Hebraism, and "Sabbaths" should not be rendered "week", as in Authorized Version and Revised Version. A reference to Leviticus 28:15-17 shows that this "first day" is the first of the days for reckoning the seven Sabbaths to Pentecost. On this day, therefore, the Lord became the firstfruits (verses: John 20:10, John 20:11) of God"s resurrection harvest (1 Corinthians 15:23).

Mary. See App-100.

early: i.e. about the ninth or tenth hour (3 to 4am.) See App-165.

unto. Greek. eis. App-104.

sepulchre. See John 19:41.

taken away = having been taken away. Greek. airo. See John 19:15,

from. Greek. ek. App-104.


Verse 2

Then = Therefore.

to. Greek. pros. App-104.

other. Greek. altos. App-124.

Jesus. App-98.

loved = used to love (imperf.) Greek. phileo. App-135.

unto = to.

have taken = took.

the Lord. Greek. kurios. App-98.

out of. Greek. ek. App-104.

know. Greek. oida. App-132.

not. Greek. ou. App-105.

have laid = laid. Same word as in John 11:34. Implying care and reverence, and so suggesting that Joseph and Nicodemus had removed Him.


Verse 3

comes = were coming.

to = unto. Greek. eis. App-104.


Verse 4

ran = were running,

did outrun = ran ahead, more quickly than. This affords no ground for the assumption by so many commentators, even Alford, that John was younger than Peter.


Verse 5

stooping down. Greek. parakupto. The word implies bending down to see more clearly. Compare the other occurance: John 20:11. Luke 24:12. James 1:25. 1 Peter 1:12.

saw. Greek. blepo. App-133.

linen clothes. See John 19:40.

yet went he = however he went.


Verse 6

into. Greek. eis. App-104.

seeth = intently beholdeth. Greek. theoreo. App-133.,

lie = lying.


Verse 7

napkin. See John 11:44.

about = upon. Greek. epi. App-104.

with. Greek. meta. App-104.

wrapped together = rolled, or coiled round and round. Greek. entuliseo. Used elsewhere, only in Matthew 27:59. Luke 23:53, of the linen cloth. Here it implies that the cloth had been folded round the head as a turban is folded, and that it lay still in the form of a turban. The linen clothes also lay exactly as they were when swathed round the body. The Lord had passed out of them, not needing, as Lazarus (John 11:44), to be loosed. It was this sight that convinced John (John 20:8).

in = into. Greek. eis. App-104.

a place by itself = one place apart.


Verse 8

also, &c. = that other disciple also. which who.

saw. Greek. eidon. App-133.

believed (App-150.): i, e. believed that He was risen. All that He had said about rising again the third day had fallen upon dull ears. The chief priests had taken note of His words (Matthew 27:63), but the disciples had not.


Verse 9

as yet . . . not = not yet. Greek. oudepo, as in John 19:41.

the scripture. Compare Psalms 16:10, Psalms 16:11, &c.

must. Compare John 3:14; John 12:34, rise again. Greek. anistemi. App-178.

from the dead. Greek. ek nekron. App-139.


Verse 10

unto. Greek. pros. App-104.

their own home = their lodging. Not the same words as in John 19:27. Galilean fishermen, constantly moving about with their Rabbi since the Feast of Tabernacles, six months before, could have had no settled home, as we understand it, in Jerusalem. They had not been there since their Master left it (See John 10:40), till the last few days.


Verse 11

at. Greek. pros. App-104.

weeping. Greek. klaio. See on John 11:33.

and = therefore.


Verse 12

two angels. Probably Michael and Gabriel. Compare Daniel 9:21; Daniel 10:21; Daniel 12:1. Luke 1:19, Luke 1:26. The supreme importance of the Lord"s resurrection in the Divine counsels demanded the presence of the highest angels.

in. Greek. en. App-104.

sitting: i.e. at either end of the rock-cut ledge whereon the Lord had been laid (as the cherubim at either end of the mercy-seat, Exodus 25:19). They sit in the empty tomb who stand in the presence of God (Luke 1:19. Revelation 8:2).

at. Greek. pros. App-104.


Verse 13

Woman. See on John 2:4.

have taken = took. Lord. App-98. A.

have laid = laid.


Verse 14

when, &a. = having said these things.

turned . . . back: i.e. turned half round.

back. Greek. eis (App-104.) ta opiso.


Verse 15

gardener. Greek. kepouros. Occurs only here. Sir. Greek. kurios. App-98. B. b.

if. App-118.

have borne = didst bear.

hast laid = didst lay.


Verse 16

Rabboni. App-98. Most of the texts add, before Rabboni, "in Hebrew".

Master. Greek. didaskalos. App-98. John 20:1. Compare John 13:13.


Verse 17

Touch Me not = Do not be holding Me. Greek. hapto. Only here in John; elsewhere, thirty-nine times. See Matthew 8:3, Matthew 8:18; Matthew 9:20, Matthew 9:21, Matthew 9:29.

not. Greek me. App-105.

for. This gives the reason for the prohibition. He afterwards allowed the women to hold Him by the feet (Matthew 28:9). On this day, the morrow after the Sabbath, the high priest would be waving the sheaf of the firstfruits before the Lord (Leviticus 23:10, Leviticus 23:11); while He, the firstfruits from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:23), would be ful filling the type by presenting Himself before the Father.

not yet. Greek. oupo; compound of ou. App-105.

My Father. See on John 2:16.

My brethren. Compare Matthew 12:50; Matthew 28:1, Matthew 28:0. Hebrews 2:11.

ascend = am ascending.

My . . . your. This marks the essential difference in His and their relationship with the Father. But because God is the God and Father of our Lord (Ephesians 1:3) He is therefore our God and Father too.

God. Greek. Theos. App-98.


Verse 18

came = cometh.

and told = telling. Greek. apangello. See John 4:51. Matthew 2:8. Compare App-121.:6.

seen. Greek. horao. App-133.


Verse 19

where. Probably the upper room. See Mark 14:15. Luke 22:12. Acts 1:13.

assembled. All the texts omit.

for = on account of. Greek. dia. App-104. John 20:2.

Peace. Compare John 14:27; John 16:33.


Verse 20

hands . . . side. Luke says hands and feet. All three were pierced. See on John 19:37.

side. See John 19:34.

were . . . glad = rejoiced.


Verse 21

My Father = The Father. See John 1:14.

sent. Greek. apostello. App-174.

even so = I also.

send. Greek. pempo. App-174. Note the distinction. The Father sent the Son alone, but the Son sends His disciples with an "escort" or guard, i.e. the Holy Spirit. This is to emphasize the fact that the Lord remains (by the Spirit) with those whom He sends.


Verse 22

breathed on. Greek. emphusao. Only here in N.T., but used in the Septuagint in Genesis 2:7 for the Hebrew word naphah, to breathe, or blow with force. The same Lord who, as Jehovah Elohim, breathed into Adam"s nostrils the breath of life so that he became a living soul, here breathes upon the apostles that they may receive Divine power. Satan tries to parody the Lord"s words and works. In the "Great" Magical Papyrus of about the third century A.D. occurs the following in a spell for driving out a demon: "When thou adjurest, blow (phusa), sending the breath from above [to the feet], and from the feet to the face". Deissmann, Fresh Light, p. 260.

the Holy Ghost. Greek. pneuma hagion (no art.): i.e. power from on high. See App-101. The Firstfruits of the resurrection here bestows the firstfruits of the Spirit, not only on the apostles, but on "them that were with them" (Luke 24:33, and compare Acts 1:14; Acts 2:1).


Verse 23

sins. App-128.

remit. Greek. aphiemi. Always translated elsewhere "forgive", when sins or debts are referred to. This authority bestowed upon the apostles and others continued in force with other "gifts" till Acts 28, which records the final rejection of the Kingdom. To suppose that the "Church" of Eph 1 has any share in them is not rightly to divide the Word of Truth, but to introduce perplexity and confusion. See Mark 16:17 and App-167.


Verse 24

Thomas. The third mention of him in John. See John 11:16; John 14:5.

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


Verse 25

Except = If . . . not. Greek ean me. App-118 and App-105

print. Greek. tupos, type. Elsewhere translated figure, fashion, example, &c.

put. Greek ballo, generally translated "cast". See John 15:6; John 19:24.

thrust. Greek. ballo, as above.

not = by no means. Greek. ou me. App-105.


Verse 26

after eight days: i.e. a week later, on the day following the second Sabbath of the seven in the reckoning to Pentecost.

after. Greek meta. App-104.

the doors being shut. This shows that the Lord had now the spiritual body, soma pneumatikon, of 1 Corinthians 15:44.


Verse 27

Reach hither = Bring here.

behold. Greek. ide. App-133.

be = become.

faithless. Greek. apistos = unbelieving.

believing. App-150.


Verse 28

My Lord and my God. First testimony to the Deity of the risen Lord. Possibly Thomas was using the words of Psalms 86:15, which in the Septuagint read Kurie ho Theos, and claiming forgiveness for his unbelief on the ground of Exodus 34:6, to which this verse of the Psalm refers.


Verse 29

Thomas. All the texts omit.

that, &c. = who saw not and believed. See John 4:48. Matthew 16:1. 1 Corinthians 1:22. Those who crave for miracles and signs to-day will have them, but they will be Satan"s miracles.


Verse 30

And many, &c. Therefore many and other (App-124.)

signs. See p. 1511 and App-176. These were always in relation to and in proof of His Messiahship.

in the presence of = in the sight of. Greek enopion.

which are not written: Here was the opportunity for the writers of the Apocryphal Gospels, &c., of which they were not slow to avail themselves.


Verse 31

these. Emphatic.

are written = have been (and therefore stand) written.

that = in order that. Greek. hina.

might = may.

believe. App-150.

Christ. App-98.

Son of God. App-98.

life. App-170.

through = in. Greek en. App-104.

name. Compare John 1:12. Acts 3:6; Acts 3:4. ] 0, 12; John 10:43. 1 Corinthians 6:11. 1 John 5:13.

 


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Bibliography Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 20:4". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/john-20.html. 1909-1922.

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