Jesus answered him, I spoke openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, where the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing.
Jump to: Alford • Barnes • Bengel • Benson • BI • Calvin • Cambridge • Chrysostom • Clarke • Darby • Ellicott • Expositor's • Exp Dct • Exp Grk • Gaebelein • GSB • Gill • Gray • Haydock • Hastings • Homiletics • ICC • JFB • Kelly • KJT • Lange • MacLaren • MHC • MHCW • Meyer • Parker • PNT • Poole • Pulpit • Sermon • SCO • Teed • TTB • VWS • WES • TSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)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.)
Always resort - Constantly assemble. They were required to assemble there three times in a year, and great multitudes were there constantly.
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 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.
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.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)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. 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.”
 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.
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.
LinksJohn 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