Richard Burridge: John Chapters 13-15

John 13:1-11. Except for special, ritual occasions foot washing was performed by servants but could not be required of male Jewish servants, only of women, children and non-Jews. Peter's word order in the Greek: "lord, you-my-wash-feet". Commentators see echoes of Baptism; Jesus washes even Judas' feet.

John 13:21-30. The dipping of the bread in the dish reminds us of Boaz (Ruth 2:14).

John 13:31-38. The "New commandment" develops Leviticus 19:18 beyond the purely ethical so that it is a response to Jesus, anticipating Tertullian's "see how these Christians love one another" (Apology 39.7). Echoes of Quo Vadis?

John 14:1-7. In spite of some translations, other than the direct exchange with individual disciples, Jesus' "you" is in the plural, emphasising the corporate. Monai from meno means "abiding place", Latin mansio; topos, "place" used by priests to denote their place, the Temple. There is an inter faith question posed by Jesus being the "only way to the Father".

John 14:8-14. Seeing the Father in Jesus refers (cf Exodus 33:18-23; Psalm 13:1; 27:8; ).

John 14:15-21. Paraclete means "someone called alongside" (Latin "advocate"), to mean either "counsellor" or "intercessor"; a familiar translation "comforter" must be understood as giving strength not ease. Allos, other, suggests that the Spirit is another Jesus.

John 14:22-31. Shalom includes peace, health and well being.

John 15:1-8. Israel was a vine brought out of Egypt and planted (Psalm 80:8; Isaiah 5:1-4; Jeremiah 2:21). Jesus in the last of his "I am" sayings puts the vine alongside the bread of life. The verb for pruning Kathairo means "cleaning out".

John 15:9-17. Interplay of the ideas of "servant" and "beloved".

John 15:18-21. Some scholars interpret john's use of "The world" as negative; but of 80 instances 20 (mostly in Chapters 13-17) are negative, 20 neutral and 40 positive. The Disciples will meet opposition if they use the word Jesus literally as "saviour", offending both Jews and Romans.

John 15:22-27. Jesus' sense of rejection (Psalm 35:19; 69:4). The ideas that the Spirit comes from the Father but is also sent by the Son accounts for the Nicene "proceeds from the Father and the Son".

Taken from:

Burridge, Richard: John: The People's Bible Commentary, The Bible Reading Fellowship, revised 2008, ISBN 978 1 84101 570 5.


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