John 8:48
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
The Jews answered him, "Aren't we right in saying that you are a Samaritan and demon-possessed?"

New Living Translation
The people retorted, "You Samaritan devil! Didn't we say all along that you were possessed by a demon?"

English Standard Version
The Jews answered him, “Are we not right in saying that you are a Samaritan and have a demon?”

Berean Study Bible
The Jews answered Him, "Are we not right to say that You are a Samaritan and You have a demon?"

Berean Literal Bible
The Jews answered and said to Him, "Are we not rightly saying that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?"

New American Standard Bible
The Jews answered and said to Him, "Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?"

King James Bible
Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The Jews responded to Him, "Aren't we right in saying that You're a Samaritan and have a demon?"

International Standard Version
The Jewish leaders replied to him, "Surely we're right in saying that you are a Samaritan and have a demon, aren't we?"

NET Bible
The Judeans replied, "Aren't we correct in saying that you are a Samaritan and are possessed by a demon?"

New Heart English Bible
Then the Judeans answered him, "Do not we say well that you are a Samaritan, and have a demon?"

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
The Jews answered and they were saying to him, “Are we not saying correctly that you are a Samaritan and have a demon in you?”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The Jews replied to Jesus, "Aren't we right when we say that you're a Samaritan and that you're possessed by a demon?"

New American Standard 1977
The Jews answered and said to Him, “Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?”

Jubilee Bible 2000
Then the Jews answered, and said unto him, Do we not say well that thou art a Samaritan and hast a demon?

King James 2000 Bible
Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that you are a Samaritan, and have a demon?

American King James Version
Then answered the Jews, and said to him, Say we not well that you are a Samaritan, and have a devil?

American Standard Version
The Jews answered and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a demon?

Douay-Rheims Bible
The Jews therefore answered, and said to him: Do not we say well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

Darby Bible Translation
The Jews answered and said to him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan and hast a demon?

English Revised Version
The Jews answered and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

Webster's Bible Translation
Then answered the Jews, and said to him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a demon?

Weymouth New Testament
"Are we not right," answered the Jews, "in saying that you are a Samaritan and are possessed by a demon?"

World English Bible
Then the Jews answered him, "Don't we say well that you are a Samaritan, and have a demon?"

Young's Literal Translation
The Jews, therefore, answered and said to him, 'Do we not say well, that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a demon?'
Study Bible
Before Abraham was Born, I Am
47Whoever belongs to God hears the words of God. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” 48The Jews answered Him, “Are we not right to say that You are a Samaritan and You have a demon?” 49“I do not have a demon,” Jesus replied, “but I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me.…
Cross References
Matthew 10:5
These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: "Do not go onto the road of the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans.

Matthew 11:18
For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, 'He has a demon!'

John 1:19
And this was John's testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him, "Who are you?"

John 4:9
"You are a Jew," said the woman. "How can You ask for a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)

John 7:20
"You have a demon," the crowd replied. "Who is trying to kill You?"

John 8:22
So the Jews began to ask, "Will He kill Himself, since He says, 'Where I am going, you cannot come'?"
Treasury of Scripture

Then answered the Jews, and said to him, Say we not well that you are a Samaritan, and have a devil?

Say.

John 8:52 Then said the Jews to him, Now we know that you have a devil. Abraham …

John 13:13 You call me Master and Lord: and you say well; for so I am.

Matthew 15:7 You hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,

James 2:19 You believe that there is one God; you do well: the devils also believe, …

thou.

John 4:9 Then said the woman of Samaria to him, How is it that you, being …

John 7:20 The people answered and said, You have a devil: who goes about to kill you?

John 10:20 And many of them said, He has a devil, and is mad; why hear you him?

Isaiah 49:7 Thus said the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to …

Isaiah 53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted …

Matthew 10:25 It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant …

Matthew 12:24,31 But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow does not …

Romans 15:3 For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches …

Hebrews 13:13 Let us go forth therefore to him without the camp, bearing his reproach.

(48) Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?--The words imply that the saying was customary among the Pharisees. The knowledge of this, and the simple way in which the fact is told, is one of many instances of the writer's minute acquaintance with what was said and done by the leaders of the Jerusalem party. There is no instance given of the term "Samaritan" being applied to our Lord, but the term itself is frequently used by the Rabbis as one of opprobrium. The history of the fourth chapter is at once suggested to our minds, and was probably not absent from theirs. (Comp. Note on John 7:35.) There may have been facts more immediately connected with this very Feast of Tabernacles present to their minds, which are unknown to us. The going up secretly of John 7:10, must almost certainly have been through Samaria. He had kept the last Passover in the despised Galilee (John 6:4). Had He kept Tabernacles in the hated Samaria? It is worth noting that the word Samaritan, in the singular, as applied to an individual, occurs but twice, except here and in John 4. One instance is in the parable spoken at no long interval after the present discourse (Luke 10:25-37). The other tells us that the only one of the ten lepers who turned back to glorify God "was a Samaritan" (Luke 17:16).

The rendering, "and hast a devil," is one which, probably, cannot now be improved. Wiclif's word here is "fiend," which in this sense is obsolete. But every reader of the Greek must feel how little our English word can represent the two distinct ideas, represented by two distinct words here and in John 8:44. "Demon," used originally for the lower divinities, and not unfrequently for the gods, passed in the Scriptures, which taught the knowledge of the true God, into the sense of an evil spirit. Thus the word which could represent the attendant genius of Socrates came to express what we speak of as demoniacal possession, and the supposed power of witchcraft and sorcery. Socrates is made to say, "For this reason, therefore, rather than for any other, he calls them demons, because they were prudent and knowing" (da?mones, Plato, Cratylus, xxiii.). The history of Simon Magus reminds us that the people of Samaria, from the least to the greatest, had been for a long time under the influence of his sorceries (Acts 8:9 et seq.), and it is probable that there is a special connection in the words here, "Thou art a Samaritan, and hast a demon." (Comp. Excursus III. on Notes to St. Matthew's Gospel, p. 185.)

Verse 48. - But it brought from them a shout of derision and a burst of scornful mockery. The Jews answered and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a daemon? They imagine that the bare charge that they, the leaders of Israel, are "not of God," and that they reveal the fact by their inability to hear the words of God then sounding in their ears, was flat heresy, a gross lack of patriotism, and proved that, in his lofty self-assertion, he was no better than a Samaritan - the most hated of their neighbours. They return a harsh tu-quoque to our Lord's refusal to admit their Abrahamic descent, and his condemnation of their utter moral dissimilarity from their putative father. The sentence, "a Samaritan art thou!" is singularly insulting in its tone and form. We cannot measure the exact amount of insult they condensed into this word, whether it be of heresy, or alienation from Israel, or accusation of impure descent. It is remarkable that our Lord had shown special kindness to Samaritans (ch. 4.), and had made in his parable "the good Samaritan" the type of neighbourly love; but these very Jews had, in the height of this controversy, accused him of being a "Galilaean," and it is not probable that they used the term otherwise than as a soubriquet of scorn. Edersheim (loc. cit., 2:174, 175) would translate into Aramaic the language here cited, and finds in its form Shomroni the real interpretation of its meaning. Shomron is, according to him, used in rabbinical writing for Ashmedai, and in the cabbalists is used for Sammael or Satan. Arabian traditions are brought in to confirm this interpretation of the speech, which he regards as equivalent to "Thou art a child of the devil," thus retorting upon Jesus the charge that they were doing the works of their father, the devil. The one expression is thought by Edersheim equivalent to that which follows, thou hast a daemon; and his explanation is thought to cover our Lord's silence respecting it. In our opinion this is far-fetched and unnatural. Christ's silence is better justified by his refusal to regard such a term as conveying opprobrium, tic had risen above the distinction of race, and could afford to despise the taunt. In John 7:20 (see note) a similar charge had been made by the angry Jews. The Lord is accused of being mastered by some daemon, who is perverting his mind and confusing his speech. Some further force is added to the charge from the language of the Talmud, 'Jebamoth,' fol. 47, a: "R. Nachman, son of Isaac, said to a Samaritan, 'Thou art a Cuthite, and testimony from thy mouth has no validity.'" Then answered the Jews, and said unto him,.... Being incensed to the last degree, that he should say they were of their father the devil, and not of God; and that he spoke the truth, and no one could convince him of sin:

say we not well, that thou art a Samaritan? it seems they had said so before, though it is not recorded; and now they thought themselves justified in it, since he treated them, the true sons of Abraham, in such a manner; and the rather, since he had been lately among the Samaritans, and had in a parable spoken in favour of a Samaritan: they meant by this expression, that he was an irreligious man, and one that had no regard to the law of Moses; or at least played fast and loose with religion and the law, and was for any thing, as times served: the Jews had a very ill opinion of the Samaritans, on these accounts and to call a man a Samaritan, was all one as to call him an heretic, an idolater, or an excommunicated person; for such were the Samaritans with the Jews; they charged them with corrupting the Scriptures, and with worshipping idols, which were hid in Mount Gerizim; and they give us a dreadful account of their being anathematized by Ezra, Zorobabel, and Joshua; who, they say (r),

"gathered the whole congregation into the temple, and brought in three hundred priests, and three hundred children, and three hundred trumpets, and three hundred books of the law, in their hands; they blew the trumpets, and the Levites sung, and they anathematized the Samaritans, by the inexplicable name of God, and by the writing on tables, and with the anathema of the house of judgment, above and below; (saying,) let not any Israelite for ever eat of the fruit, or of the least morsel of a Samaritan; hence they say, whoso eateth the flesh of a Samaritan, it is all one as if he ate swine's flesh; also let not a Samaritan be made a proselyte, nor have a part in the resurrection of the dead; as it is said, "You have nothing to do with to build an house unto our God", Ezra 4:3, neither in this world, nor in the world to come: moreover, also let him have no part in Jerusalem; as it is said, "But you have no portion, nor, right, nor memorial in Jerusalem", Nehemiah 2:20; and they sent this anathema to the Israelites that were in Babylon, and they added thereunto, curse upon curse moreover, king Cyrus added an everlasting anathema to it, as it is said, "And the God that hath caused his name to dwell there, destroy", &c. Ezra 6:12.''

And hence, because the Samaritans were had in such abhorrence by the Jews, they would not ask a blessing over food in company with them (s), nor say Amen after they had asked one (t); nor indeed, after the better sort of them had asked, unless the whole blessing was distinctly heard (u), that so they might be sure there was no heresy in it; by all which it appears, how opprobrious this name was, and what a sad character was fixed upon a man that bore it; see Gill on John 4:9; and as Christ was called by the Jews a Samaritan, they having no name more hateful and reproachful to call him by, so the Christians are still in their writings called Cuthites, or Samaritans; and it is indeed with them a general name for all Gentiles and idolaters, or whom they esteem such:

and hast a devil; familiarity and converse with one; by which means they imagined he knew their thoughts, and their actions, and by his assistance performed his miracles; or they took him for a lunatic, or a madman; whose lunacy and madness proceeded from the devil, with whom he was possessed: and this rather seems to be the sense, since in John 8:52 the Jews say they knew he had a devil, which they concluded from his saying, that such that observed his words, and kept them, should never die; which they considered as the words of a man out of his senses, seeing all men, even the best of men die, they not understanding his meaning; whereas they could not gather from hence, that he dealt with familiar spirits; and what still confirms this sense is, that these two are joined together in John 10:20, "he hath a devil, and is mad", and such as were demoniacs, men possessed with devils, were either mad, or lunatic, and melancholy; see Matthew 8:28, compared with Mark 9:17. To which may be added, that it was a prevailing notion with the Jews, that madness and melancholy were owing to evil spirits, which had the predominancy over men: and seeing Christ was thought to be besides himself by his friends and relations, Mark 3:21, it need not be wondered at, that his enemies should fix such a character on him; nor was this an unusual one to be given to good men; the prophets and spiritual men of the Old Testament were accounted madmen, 2 Kings 9:11. And since our Lord was used in this abusive manner, it need not seem strange, that his followers should be treated in the same way; as the Apostle Paul and his companions in the ministry were, Acts 26:24; see John 10:20.

(r) Pirke Eliezer, c. 38. (s) Bartenora in Misn. Beracot, c. 7. sect. 1.((t) Elias in Tishbi in voce (u) Misn. Beracot, c. 8. sect. 8. & Maimon. & Bartonera in ib. 48-51. Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?—What intense and virulent scorn! (See Heb 12:3). The "say we not well" refers to Joh 7:20. "A Samaritan" means more than "no Israelite at all"; it means one who pretended, but had no manner of claim to the title—retorting perhaps, this denial of their true descent from Abraham.8:48-53 Observe Christ's disregard of the applause of men. those who are dead to the praises of men can bear their contempt. God will seek the honour of all who do not seek their own. In these verses we have the doctrine of the everlasting happiness of believers. We have the character of a believer; he is one that keeps the sayings of the Lord Jesus. And the privilege of a believer; he shall by no means see death for ever. Though now they cannot avoid seeing death, and tasting it also, yet they shall shortly be where it will be no more forever, Ex 14:13.
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