If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)If I had not done among them the works.—Comp. Note on John 15:22, and for the evidence of our Lord’s works, see John 5:36; John 9:3-4; John 9:24; John 10:21; John 10:37; John 14:10. They met the evidence of works by the assertion that He was a sinner, and possessed a devil. Their hatred led them to ascribe the highest good to the power of evil. To such hearts there are no channels by which goodness can approach. (Comp. especially Notes on Matthew 12:31-32.)John 15:24-27. If I had not done among them, &c. — If I had wrought no miracle at all among them; nay, if I had not done such extraordinary works as no other man ever did, not even their prophets, or Moses himself; they had not had sin — Any degree of sin comparable to that which they are now under: but now they have both seen, &c. — But now, as they have rejected my superior miracles, which they have seen with their own eyes, at the same time that they own the evidence of those which Moses wrought, of which they have heard only by distant report, they manifest such an obstinate perverseness of temper, that I may truly say, they have both seen and hated both me and my Father. For in my miracles, which are greater than any hitherto exhibited, they have seen, or might have seen, who I am; namely, the only-begotten Son of God; and who is my Father; for the glory of all the divine perfections shines forth in my miracles. Nevertheless, they have rejected me, who have performed these miracles, and my Father likewise, who sent me to perform them; so that, shutting their eyes against the light thus shining on them, and hardening their hearts against that incontrovertible evidence of my mission, which my mighty works afford, it is evident they reject me, not out of ignorance and weakness, but out of wilful hatred to me, and him that sent me, and therefore are utterly inexcusable. But this cometh to pass — This is all permitted; that the word might be fulfilled — Or, in consequence of this being permitted, the word is fulfilled; see note on chap. John 12:37-40; that is written in the law — Or in their sacred volume; (namely, Psalm 35:19;) They hated me without a cause — These very words, strictly speaking, were spoken concerning David, and are here applied to the Messiah, both because David was a type of him, and because he was hated without a cause, (see Isaiah 3:3-9; Daniel 9:26; Zechariah 12:10,) as David was. The meaning is, Be not surprised that I, who am the Messiah, have been rejected of the Jews. It has happened according to the prediction of their own prophets. But when the Comforter is come, &c. — But, “for your encouragement I assure you, that they will not always continue thus obstinately bent against me and my religion. When he, who is to comfort you under all your troubles by the aid he will afford you, and who on that account is justly styled the Comforter; when he is come, whom I will send you from the Father — To remain always with you; even the Spirit of truth — He shall bear witness to me and to my religion so effectually, that many of the Jews shall be converted.” — Macknight. We may observe here, that the Spirit’s coming, and being sent, by our Lord, from the Father, to testify of him, are personal characters, and plainly distinguish him from the Father and the Son. And his title as the Spirit of truth, together with his proceeding from the Father, can agree to none but a divine person. And that he proceeds from the Son as well as from the Father, may be fairly argued from his being called the Spirit of Christ, 1 Peter 1:11; and from his being said to be sent by Christ from the Father, as well as sent by the Father in Christ’s name. And ye also — Weak as you now appear, shall, by his powerful assistance, bear a courageous and convincing testimony to me, because you have been with me from the beginning — Namely, of my ministry, and therefore are the best qualified to give an account of my whole conduct; which, the better it is known, the more it will justify my cause, and expose the wickedness of those that rise up against me. In other words, “In process of time men’s eyes shall be opened to discern the authority of your testimony; and they shall give credit to your reports concerning me, because they shall know that ye have been my companions from the very first, consequently eye and ear-witnesses of all that I have done and said: so that after a while you shall testify concerning me, and preach my religion far more successfully than it will be in your power to do at the beginning.” See Doddridge and Macknight.
1. In their number. He healed great multitudes, and no small part of his life was occupied in doing good by miraculous power.
2. In their nature. They involved a greater exertion of power. He healed all forms of disease. He showed that his power was superior to all kinds of pain. He raised Lazarus after he had been four days dead. He probably refers also to the fact that he had performed miracles of a different kind from all the prophets.
3. He did all this by his own power; Moses and the prophets by the invoked power of God. Jesus spake and it was done, showing that he had power of himself to do more than all the ancient prophets had done. It may be added that his miracles were done in a short time. They were constant, rapid, continued, in all places. Wherever he was, he showed that he had this power, and in the short space of three years and a half it is probable that he performed more miracles than are recorded of Moses and Elijah, and all the prophets put together.Acts 3:6; but it was in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. We read indeed of Christ’s praying at the raising of Lazarus; but his ordinary way was by his word of command, which was a quite different way than that used by those men by whom miracles had been wrought. Besides, it is manifest that the generality of the Jews did not look upon Christ as one sent from God, though many of them did: and admit that there had been nothing in the miracles wrought by Christ, more than Elijah, or Elisha, or the prophets had done; yet it had been sufficient for to have convinced them, that he acted by a Divine power, and must be sent and authorized by and from God to do what he did. Now saith our Saviour, If I had not done before their faces such works as no man could do but by a power derived from God, and some such as God never authorized men to do, their sin had been nothing to what now it is: but now they have understood that I am sent from my Father; and knowing this, yet going on in their most malicious designs against me, they both declare a hatred and malice against my Father who sent me, and me as sent by him.
and which none other man did; in his own name, and by his own power; and which none of the men of God ever did; as Moses, Elijah, Elisha, or others; and particularly that of giving sight to one that was born blind: now if these works had not been done among them, openly, visibly, and publicly,
they had not had sin; or so much sin; or their sin of unbelief would not have been so great, or attended with such aggravating circumstances; or they would not have been guilty of the sin against the Holy Ghost, as many of them were; who saw his works and miracles, and were convicted in their own consciences that he was the Messiah, and yet rejected him, against all the light and evidence which the Spirit of God gave by them, and by whom Christ wrought his miracles:
but now have they both seen; the works which were done, and the Messiah, whose mission from the Father they proved;
and hated both me and my Father; for their rejection of him as the Messiah, notwithstanding the doctrines he taught, and the miracles he wrought, plainly arose from obstinacy, malice, and inveterate hatred against Christ, and against the Father that sent him.If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)John 15:24. εἰ τὰ ἔργα … οὐκ εἶχον. This repeats in a slightly varied form the statement of John 15:22. He had not only come and spoken, but had done works which none other had done, cf. John 3:2; John 9:32; John 7:31. The miracles wrought by Christ were themselves of a kind fitted to produce faith. In them men were meant to see God, John 5:17; John 5:19-20. So that He could say, νῦν δὲ καὶ ἑωράκασι … μου. This is their guilt, that they have both seen and hated both me and my Father. This does not imply that they had been conscious of seeing the Father in Christ, but only that in point of fact they had done so. Cf. John 14:9; John 1:18.24. the works] If they did not see that His words were Divine they might at least have seen that His works were such. Comp. John 10:38, John 14:11, John 5:36. Here again their sin was against light; for they admitted the works (John 11:47).
which none other man did] Comp. John 9:32.
seen … my Father] Comp. John 14:9-10.John 15:24. Ἑωράκασι, they have seen) the works.Verse 24. - If I had not done among them works which none other did Here he comes down from "Word" to "work," and indicates the lower agency, that of works, which are neither inoperative nor valueless, and which transcend all other similar deeds. They are works of the Son of God, works of creation and of healing, triumphant conflict with the forces of nature and the malice of the devil, of a kind which may be compared with, but which exceed all human and angelic ministry. They had not had sin, but now they have both seen and hated both me and my Father. The works as well as the words of Christ might have softened their hearts, but the Divine claims, which were thus pressed home upon the conscience, provoked their malice. "They took counsel to kill him;" "They took up stones to stone him." They hated God as God, and goodness and truth just because they were goodness and truth. The awful condemnation is here pronounced, "that men loved darkness rather than light." They positively saw their Father, and hated him. This is the most terrible condemnation that can be pronounced on moral beings.
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