|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
14:18-24 Christ promises that he would continue his care of his disciples. I will not leave you orphans, or fatherless, for though I leave you, yet I leave you this comfort, I will come to you. I will come speedily to you at my resurrection. I will come daily to you in my Spirit; in the tokens of his love, and visits of his grace. I will come certainly at the end of time. Those only that see Christ with an eye of faith, shall see him for ever: the world sees him no more till his second coming; but his disciples have communion with him in his absence. These mysteries will be fully known in heaven. It is a further act of grace, that they should know it, and have the comfort of it. Having Christ's commands, we must keep them. And having them in our heads, we must keep them in our hearts and lives. The surest evidence of our love to Christ is, obedience to the laws of Christ. There are spiritual tokens of Christ and his love given to all believers. Where sincere love to Christ is in the heart, there will be obedience. Love will be a commanding, constraining principle; and where love is, duty follows from a principle of gratitude. God will not only love obedient believers, but he will take pleasure in loving them, will rest in love to them. He will be with them as his home. These privileges are confined to those whose faith worketh by love, and whose love to Jesus leads them to keep his commandments. Such are partakers of the Holy Spirit's new-creating grace.
Verse 18. - I will not leave you behind as orphans, bereft of my paternal guardianship. Though the disciples were his brethren, yet, as we have seen, he calls them (John 13:53) τεκνία his "little children;" and (Hebrews 2:11) the apostles reckoned him as Arthur (in 'Guinevere') does when he speaks of "our fair Father Christ." His departure might be the signal for the most utter sense of desertion, exposure, and peril; and even the promise of another Advocatus would hardly console them before the time would arrive when he would receive them unto himself; but, says he, I am coming to you. Much unnecessary comment has here arisen as to whether this coming was the last triumphant παρουσία of which he speaks in part in Ver. 3, - this would be incompatible with the assurances that then the world would and will see him: "Every eye shall" then be prophetic and "see him," and "before him shall be gathered all nations;" or whether this coming be simply his resurrection with his transitory appearances in the flesh; for both of these representations would fail of the full consolation which would terminate their orphanhood. Surely he speaks of his own spiritual coming in the bestowment of the other Advocate, who, by being with them and in them, would prove to them, notwithstanding his own apparent departure, that he had come again in his glorious fullness of love. In the thought of the early Church the Lord was the Spirit: the glorified Lord, the Christ, who had "all power in heaven and earth," was manifested, was veritably present, in all the work of the Spirit of God in his Church. The Spirit was not only the Unity of the Father and the Son, the one Self-consciousness of both, but the one Consciousness of the Son of God and Son of man, the uniting Energy which represents the one Personality of the Christ, the Spirit-power which blends all the members of the mystical body with the Head. Throughout the Acts of the Apostles we see that all the great operations of the Holy Spirit are but the energies of the living, reigning Lord.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
I will not leave you comfortless,.... Gr. "orphans", or "fatherless". Christ stands in the relation of a Father to his people, and they are his children, his spiritual seed and offspring; and so the disciples might fear, that as Christ was going from them, they should be left as children without a father, in a very desolate and comfortless, condition: to support them against these fears, Christ promises that he would not leave them thus, at least not long:
I will come to you; in a very short time, as he did; for on the third day he rose again from the dead, and appeared to them, which filled them with great joy. So among the Jews, disciples, and the world too, are represented as fatherless, when their doctors and wise men are removed by death. Says R. Aba, (x) and so sometimes others, concerning R. Simeon ben Jochai,
"woe to the world when thou shall go out of it, woe to the generation that shall be in the world when thou shall remove from them, , "and they shall be left fatherless by thee".''
And in another place (y);
"afterwards R. Akiba went out and cried, and his eyes flowed with water, and he said, woe Rabbi, woe Rabbi, for the world is left, "fatherless by thee".''
(x) Zohar in Num fol. 96. 3. & in Lev. fol. 42. 3. & in Exod. fol. 10. 3. & 28. 3.((y) Midrash Hannealam in Zohar in Gen. fol. 65. 4.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
18-20. I will not leave you comfortless—in a bereaved and desolate condition; or (as in Margin) "orphans."
I will come to you—"I come" or "am coming" to you; that is, plainly by the Spirit, since it was to make His departure to be no bereavement.
John 14:18 Parallel Commentaries
John 14:18 NIV
John 14:18 NLT
John 14:18 ESV
John 14:18 NASB
John 14:18 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible