John 18:20
Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing.
Jump to: AlfordBarnesBengelBensonBICalvinCambridgeChrysostomClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctExp GrkGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsICCJFBKellyKingLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWMeyerParkerPNTPoolePulpitSermonSCOTeedTTBVWSWESTSK
(20) I spake openly to the world.—He does not distinctly answer the question about His disciples, but His words imply that all may have been His disciples. The pronoun is strongly emphatic; “I am one,” His words mean, “who spake plainly and to all men.” “My followers have not been initiated into secret mysteries, nor made conspirators in any political organisation.” “I have not been a leader, and they have not been members, of a party.”

I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort.—The better reading omits the article before “synagogue,” as in John 6:59, and reads for the last clause, where all the Jews resort. “In synagogue” is an adverbial phrase, as we say “in church.” His constant custom was to teach “in synagogue,” and in Jerusalem He taught in the temple itself, which was the resort of all the leaders of the people. This refers to His general custom, and does not, of course, exclude His teaching in other places. The point is that during His public ministry He was constantly in the habit of teaching under the authority of the officers of the synagogues and the temple. That was the answer as to what His doctrine had been.

And in secret have I said nothing.—His private teaching of the disciples is, of course, not excluded, but that was only the exposition of His public doctrine. There was nothing in it such as they understood by “secret teaching.” It was unlike “the leaven of the Pharisees which was hypocrisy;” for in it there was “nothing covered,” “nothing hid.” (Comp. John 12:1-3.)

18:13-27 Simon Peter denied his Master. The particulars have been noticed in the remarks on the other Gospels. The beginning of sin is as the letting forth of water. The sin of lying is a fruitful sin; one lie needs another to support it, and that another. If a call to expose ourselves to danger be clear, we may hope God will enable us to honour him; if it be not, we may fear that God will leave us to shame ourselves. They said nothing concerning the miracles of Jesus, by which he had done so much good, and which proved his doctrine. Thus the enemies of Christ, whilst they quarrel with his truth, wilfully shut their eyes against it. He appeals to those who heard him. The doctrine of Christ may safely appeal to all that know it, and those who judge in truth bear witness to it. Our resentment of injuries must never be passionate. He reasoned with the man that did him the injury, and so may we.Openly to the world - If his doctrine had tended to excite sedition and tumult, if he had aimed to overthrow the government, he would have trained his friends in secret; he would have retired from public view, and would have laid his plans in private. This is the case with all who attempt to subvert existing establishments. Instead of that, he had proclaimed his views to all. He had done it in every place of public concourse in the synagogue and in the temple. He here speaks the language of one conscious of innocence and determined to insist on his rights.

Always resort - Constantly assemble. They were required to assemble there three times in a year, and great multitudes were there constantly.

In secret ... - He had taught no private or concealed doctrine. He had taught nothing to his disciples which he had not himself taught in public and commanded them to do, Matthew 10:27; Luke 12:3.

20. I spake—have spoken.

openly to the world—See Joh 7:4.

I ever taught in the synagogues and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort—courting publicity, though with sublime noiselessness.

in secret have I said—spake I.

nothing—that is, nothing of any different nature; all His private communications with the Twelve being but explanations and developments of His public teaching. (Compare Isa 45:19; 48:16). (Also see on [1896]Mr 14:54.)

I spake openly to the world; to all sorts of men, my enemies as well as my friends.

I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; the Jews for instruction do use to resort to the temple, which was in Jerusalem, and whither three times in the year all the males were wont to come from all parts of the country: and in the public assemblies of the Jews, and in the places where they use to meet.

And in secret have I said nothing; I have said nothing in secret contrary to the doctrine which I have publicly taught; though I have preached in other places, yet it hath been the same thing which I have said in public.

Jesus answered him,.... Not to the first of these questions, concerning his disciples; not because they had all now forsaken him, and one was denying him; nor because he would not betray them; nor because he would suffer alone; but because if his doctrine was good; it could not be blameworthy to have disciples, and to teach them: and the charge of sedition, blasphemy, and idolatry, they wanted to fasten on him, would sufficiently appear to be groundless by the doctrine he preached; and as to that he answers not directly what he taught, but declares the manner in which he delivered it, and which was such, that they that heard him could not be strangers to it.

I spake openly to the world; with all plainness, freedom, and boldness, without any reserve or ambiguity; and that not to a few persons only, to his own particular disciples, but to all the people of the Jews, who crowded in great numbers to hear him; insomuch that it was said by his enemies, that the world was gone after him.

I ever taught in the synagogue; the Arabic, "the synagogues"; the places of public worship in all parts of the nation, where the Jews met to pray, and read, and hear the word:

and in the temple; at Jerusalem, whenever he was in that city;

whither the Jews always resort; for prayer, and to offer sacrifice, and particularly at the three grand festivals of the year, the passover, Pentecost, and feast of tabernacles, when all the males from all parts appeared before the Lord. Accordingly, the Alexandrian copy, and some others, read, "whither all the Jews resort"; and so read the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, Persic, and Ethiopic versions.

And in secret have I said nothing; not but that our Lord taught in other places than what are here mentioned, as on mountains, in deserts, by the sea shore, and in private houses, yet generally to great multitudes; and though he sometimes conversed alone, and in secret with his disciples, yet what he taught them was either an explanation of what he had said in public, or was perfectly agreeable to it.

Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing.
20. I spake] The true reading gives, I have spoken. There is a strong emphasis on ‘I.’ Christ answers no questions about His disciples; He bears the brunt Himself alone. Moreover He seems to contrast the openness of His proceedings with the secrecy of His enemies.

openly] See on John 7:4; John 7:26.

to the world] Not to a secret society. Comp. John 8:26.

in the synagogue] All the best MSS. omit the article; in synagogue, as we say ‘in church.’ See on John 6:59.

whither the Jews always resort] The better reading gives, where all the Jews come together. The word rendered ‘resort’ is not the same as that rendered ‘resort’ in John 18:2. ‘I always taught in public places, where all the Jews meet.’ Nothing could be more open than His teaching. Comp. Matthew 10:27.

have I said] Rather, I spake, the aorist of the verb in the first clause, which is in the perfect. See next verse.

John 18:20. Τῷ κόσμῳ, to the world) Language (i.e. His speaking) very comprehensive. Παῤῥησίᾳ, openly, signifies the manner; πάντοτε, ever, or always, the time; in synagogue and in the temple, the place.—ἐν συναγωγῇ) Editions have ἐν τῇ συναγωγῇ: as presently after we have the expression, ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ. But it is not without good reason that the Evangelist has omitted the article τῇ. Joh. Harduin lays it down that there were only two synagogues at Jerusalem, the one for native Jews, the other for the ‘Libertines,’ Acts 6:9; and attempts to infer from this passage of John, that there was but one synagogue of native-born Jews.—Op. Sel. p. 904.[383] But the Lord is speaking of the synagogues of the whole country, not merely of the city; and so, therefore, from this passage the oneness of the synagogue in the city neither is refuted, nor is to be inferred. The noun in the Singular number, ἘΝ ΣΥΝΑΓΩΓῇ, acquires a distributive force [in synagogue, wherever it might happen to be, in every one]: and thence the article τῷ, added to “the temple,” forms an Epitasis [an emphatic addition, in repeating the previous ἘΝ].—ἘΝ ΚΡΥΠΤῷ) in secret, nothing, as far as concerns My doctrine (teaching) before the people. For He also apart taught His disciples many things; the main substance of which, however, He now confessed, even in presence of the Council (Sanhedrim). Matthew 26:64, “Hereafter shall ye see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”

[383] Rabbinical authorities, as Megill. lxxiii. 4, represent the number of synagogues in Jerusalem, 480: T. Hieros. Ctuboth. xxxv. 3, makes it 460. Acts 6:9 may imply that each separate tribe and colony had a synagogue in Jerusalem. A omits the τῇ before συναγωγῇ. B, according to Lachm., supports it; but Tisch. questions it, B (?).—E. and T.

Verse 20. - Jesus answered him, I have frankly (so Meyer, Lange; not "openly," but boldly, with freedom of speech) spoken to the world. Without reserving any of the essentials of my teaching, always I taught in synagogue, and in the temple, whither all the Jews resort and come together; and in secret spake I nothing, which they were not bidden to proclaim upon the housetops. Christ here repudiates esoteric teaching distinct from his abundant public ministry. It is true he explained his parables to his disciples, and he had within the last few hours poured forth the depth of his feelings upon them; still, he had said the same things virtually in the synagogues, on the hillside, in the temple, in the hearing of Greek as well as Jew. Much of that which he had just said in the upper chamber, hundreds and thousands had already heard. This great utterance accounts for the fact that St. Paul had received, long before the Fourth Gospel was written, truth allied to the teaching of the upper chamber. John 18:20In the synagogue (ἐν τῇ συναγωγῇ)

The best texts omit the article. Render, in synagogue: when the people were assembled. Like our phrase, in church.

Always resort (πάντοτε συνέρχονται)

For πάντοτε always, read πάντες all. Συνέρχονται is rather come together, assemble. Rev., where all the Jews come together.

John 18:20 Interlinear
John 18:20 Parallel Texts

John 18:20 NIV
John 18:20 NLT
John 18:20 ESV
John 18:20 NASB
John 18:20 KJV

John 18:20 Bible Apps
John 18:20 Parallel
John 18:20 Biblia Paralela
John 18:20 Chinese Bible
John 18:20 French Bible
John 18:20 German Bible

Bible Hub

John 18:19
Top of Page
Top of Page