John 6:38
For I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(38) Not to do mine own will.—Comp. John 5:30. He has spoken of the Father’s gift and of human action. He now once more identifies His own will with that of the Father, and yet states the fact of His possessing an independent will. It cannot be that He should cast out any one who comes. He knows, indeed, with the knowledge of human nature, how hard it is for men to read the spiritual through the sensuous, and what are the hindrances in the way of every seeker of truth. Added to this, He knows, with a divine knowledge, what is the infinite love of the Father, and He has Himself come down from heaven to fulfil heaven’s will in love to man.

John 6:38-40. For I came down from heaven — Into this lower world; not to do mine own will — Or to seek any separate interest of my own; but the will of him that sent me — Who is loving to every man, and willeth not the death of a sinner. And this is the Father’s will — This he revealeth to be his will; that of all which he hath given me, I should lose nothing — It is the will of my Father that every thing necessary be done, both for the conversion of sinners and for the preservation of those in the paths of righteousness who are already converted. He even willeth all men to be saved, yea, eternally saved; and in order thereto, to come to the knowledge of the truth, and to persevere therein. But he willeth these things conditionally, and not absolutely: men through his grace must repent, and bring forth fruit worthy of repentance: they must believe in Christ, and in the truths and promises of his gospel, with a faith that worketh by love: they must resist the devil, steadfast in the faith; overcome the world, and crucify the flesh: they must endure unto the end, believing, loving, and obeying; must be faithful unto death, and then they shall receive the crown of life. And this is likewise the will of him that sent me — This also he wills conditionally; that every one which seeth the Son — Seeth the character and mission of the Son in the miracles which he works, and in the other evidences wherewith his mission is attended: as in John 6:36; or who recognises the Son, views him with an attentive mind; as θεωραω seems evidently to imply; that sees him so as to know him; and in consequence of that knowledge, cordially believeth on him — Receiving him by faith, and trusting in him as an all-sufficient Saviour; may have everlasting life — It is the fixed determination of the Father, to bestow everlasting life on all who persevere in this faith; and therefore, in execution of my Father’s will; I will raise all such up at the last day — I will make them completely happy, both in soul and body, in the enjoyment of a glorious immortality: nor are there any purposes or decrees of God inconsistent with this. Thus did Jesus place the character of the Messiah in a light very different from that in which his hearers had been accustomed to view it; and taught them, that instead of temporal blessings, which they expected from him, they were to receive none but such as were spiritual.6:36-46 The discovery of their guilt, danger, and remedy, by the teaching of the Holy Spirit, makes men willing and glad to come, and to give up every thing which hinders applying to him for salvation. The Father's will is, that not one of those who were given to the Son, should be rejected or lost by him. No one will come, till Divine grace has subdued, and in part changed his heart; therefore no one who comes will ever be cast out. The gospel finds none willing to be saved in the humbling, holy manner, made known therein; but God draws with his word and the Holy Ghost; and man's duty is to hear and learn; that is to say, to receive the grace offered, and consent to the promise. None had seen the Father but his beloved Son; and the Jews must expect to be taught by his inward power upon their minds, and by his word, and the ministers whom he sent among them.For I came down ... - This verse shows that he came for a specific purpose, which he states in the next verse, and means that, as he came to do his Father's will, he would be faithful to the trust. Though his hearers should reject him, yet the will of God would be accomplished in the salvation of some who should come to Him.

Mine own will - See notes at John 5:30.

38. For I came down from heaven not to do Mine own will—to play an independent part.

but—in respect to both the foregoing things, the divine and the human side of salvation.

the will of Him that sent Me—What this twofold will of Him that sent Him is, we are next sublimely told (Joh 6:39, 40):

Our Lord confirmeth what he had before said concerning his gracious reception of believers, and preserving them by his grace in their state of grace, so that they shall not be cast out with reprobates in the day of judgment, from this, that he came not to execute any particular will of his own, but what was also the will of his Father, who sent him into the world. For I came down from heaven,.... by change of place, or local motion; for Christ is the immense, infinite, and omnipresent God, and cannot be said properly to move from place to place; for he fills all places, even heaven and earth, with his presence, and was in heaven as the Son of God, at the same time he was here on earth as the son of man: wherefore this must be understood in a manner becoming his proper deity, his divine sonship, and personality: this descent was by the assumption of the human nature into union with his divine person, which was an instance of amazing grace and condescension. The Jew (m) objects to this, and says,

"if this respects the descent of the soul, the soul of every man descended from thence; but if it respects the body, the rest of the evangelists contradict his words, particularly Luke, when he says, Luke 2:7 that his mother brought him forth at Bethlehem.''

But this descent regards neither his soul nor body, but his divine person, which always was in heaven, and not any local descent of that; but, as before observed, an assumption of human nature, which he took of the virgin on earth; and so there is no contradiction between the evangelists; nor is descent from heaven unsuitable to Christ as a divine person, since it is ascribed to God, Genesis 11:7; and if God may be said to go down from heaven by some display of his power, and intimation of his presence, Christ may be said to descend from heaven by that marvellous work of his, taking upon him our nature, and walking up and down on earth in the form of a servant; and which was done with this view, as he says,

not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me; that is, not to do his own will, as separate from his Father's, and much less as contrary to it; otherwise he did come to do his own will, which, as God, was the same with his Father's, he being one with him in nature, and so in power and will; and though his will, as man, was distinct from his Father's, yet not repugnant, but resigned unto it: and this will he came to do, was to preach the Gospel, fulfil the law, work miracles, and obtain the eternal redemption and salvation of his people. What the above Jewish writer (n) objects to this part of the text is of very little moment: whose words are;

"moreover, what he says, "not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me", shows, that he that sent, is not one and the same with him that is sent, seeing the will of him that is sent, is not as the will of him that sends.''

It is readily granted that they are not one and the same person; they are two distinct persons, which sending, and being sent, do clearly show; but then they are one in nature, though distinct in person, and they agree in will and work. Christ came not to do any will of his own different from that of his Father's; nor do these words imply a difference of wills in them, much less a contrariety in them, but rather the sameness of them.

(m) R. Isaac Chizzuk Emuna, par. 2. c. 44. p. 434. (n) R. Chizzuk Emmuna, par. 2. c. 44. p. 434.

For I came down from heaven, not to do mine {k} own will, but the will of him that sent me.

(k) See above in Joh 5:22.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
John 6:38-39. ὅτι καταβέβηκαἡμέρᾳ. Everywhere Jesus forestalls the idea that He is speaking for Himself, and is uttering merely human judgments, or is in any way regulated in His action by what is arbitrary: it is the Supreme Will He represents. And this will requires Him to protect and provide for all that is committed to Him. ἵνα πᾶν ὃ δέδωκέ μοι, on this nominative absolute, see Lücke or Raphel, who justify it by many instances. The positive and negative aspects of the Redeemer’s work, and the permanence of its results, are indicated. On ἀναστήσωἡμέρᾳ, Bengel says: “Hic finis est ultra quem periculum nullum,” and Calvin finely: “Sit ergo hoc animis nostris infixum porrectam esse nobis manum a Christo, ut nos minime in medio cursu deserat, sed quo ejus ductu freti secure ad diem ultimum oculos attollere audeamus”. It is a perfect and enduring salvation the Father has designed to give us in Christ.38. I came down] Better, I am come down or have descended. Four times in this discourse Christ declares that He is come down from heaven; John 6:38; John 6:50-51; John 6:58. The drift of these three verses (38–40) is;—How could I cast them out, seeing that I am come to do my Father’s will, and He wills that they should be received?John 6:38. Καταβέβηκα, I came down) This speech in many things flows from His personal union with the Father. For His descent from heaven refers to the nature which He had, prior to His birth from Mary according to the flesh.Verse 38. - Because I came down from heaven (cf. John 3:13), not that I might do my own will, but the will of him that sent me (see John 5:19, 30, notes). The practical, ethical force of this statement is to shape and defend the previous assurance. Christ's gracious reception and benediction is in willing harmony with, and not in opposition to, the Father's heart. There is no schism between the Father and Son. A separate will in and of itself assigned to the Son is not inconceivable, nay, it is imperatively necessary to posit, or we should lose all distinctions whatever between the Father and Son, between God and Christ. But the very separateness of the wills gives the greater significance to their moral oneness. "Not my will, but thine be done," "Not as I will, but as thou wilt," involve submission, voluntary surrender, to the Father's will; but here the Lord insists on absolute harmony and free cooperation. The bare idea of the Incarnation suggests the conditions of freedom which might conceivably issue in divarication of interest and aim. Christ declares that the Divine commission of his humanity is the spontaneous and free, but perfect, coincidence of his will with the Father's. Christ's embodiment of the Father's will, and coordination with it, make all his attractiveness to the human soul. His healing, feeding, and satisfying powers become a revelation of the Father's heart. If he will not cast out the coming ones, it is because he came down out of heaven to fulfil the Father's will (see further, vers. 44, 45), to explain the world wide hunger, to meet and execute the will of the Father. The frequent assertions by our Lord in this discourse (and in John 3:13) of his descent from heaven as One charged with a full knowledge of the Divine will, implies that the Lord was conscious of pre-existence in the very bosom of God. This was language which, with more of the same import, led St. John to the overwhelming conclusion that the Jesus whom he knew in the flesh was the Only Begotten of the Father - was the Logos made flesh. From heaven (ἐκ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ)

But the best texts read ἐκ, from, instead of ἐκ, out of, the idea being rather that of departure (I came down) than of origin. I came down should be as Rev. (I am come down). The tense is the perfect.

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