1:35 Again the next day John 1 was standing there 2 with two of his disciples. 1:36 Gazing at Jesus as he walked by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!” 3 1:37 When John’s 4 two disciples heard him say this, 5 they followed Jesus. 6 1:38 Jesus turned around and saw them following and said to them, “What do you want?” 7 So they said to him, “Rabbi” (which is translated Teacher), 8 “where are you staying?” 1:39 Jesus 9 answered, 10 “Come and you will see.” So they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. Now it was about four o’clock in the afternoon. 11
1:40 Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two disciples who heard what John said 12 and followed Jesus. 13 1:41 He first 14 found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah!” 15 (which is translated Christ). 16 1:42 Andrew brought Simon 17 to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon, the son of John. 18 You will be called Cephas” (which is translated Peter). 19
1:43 On the next day Jesus 20 wanted to set out for Galilee. 21 He 22 found Philip and said 23 to him, “Follow me.” 1:44 (Now Philip was from Bethsaida, 24 the town of 25 Andrew and Peter.) 1:45 Philip found Nathanael 26 and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the law, and the prophets also 27 wrote about – Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” 1:46 Nathanael 28 replied, 29 “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” 30 Philip replied, 31 “Come and see.”
1:47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and exclaimed, 32 “Look, a true Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” 33 1:48 Nathanael asked him, “How do you know me?” Jesus replied, 34 “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, 35 I saw you.” 1:49 Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king 36 of Israel!” 37 1:50 Jesus said to him, 38 “Because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree, do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” 39 1:51 He continued, 40 “I tell all of you the solemn truth 41 – you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.” 42
1 sn John refers to John the Baptist.
2 tn “There” is not in the Greek text but is implied by current English idiom.
3 sn This section (1:35-51) is joined to the preceding by the literary expedient of repeating the Baptist’s testimony about Jesus being the Lamb of God (1:36, cf. 1:29). This repeated testimony (1:36) no longer has revelatory value in itself, since it has been given before; its purpose, instead, is to institute a chain reaction which will bring John the Baptist’s disciples to Jesus and make them Jesus’ own disciples.
4 tn Grk “his”; the referent (John) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
5 tn Grk “And the two disciples heard him speaking.”
6 sn The expression followed Jesus pictures discipleship, which means that to learn from Jesus is to follow him as the guiding priority of one’s life.
7 tn Grk “What are you seeking?”
8 sn This is a parenthetical note by the author.
9 tn Grk “He”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
10 tn Grk “said to them.”
11 tn Grk “about the tenth hour.”
sn About four o’clock in the afternoon. What system of time reckoning is the author using? B. F. Westcott thought John, unlike the synoptic gospels, was using Roman time, which started at midnight (St. John, 282). This would make the time 10 a.m., which would fit here. But later in the Gospel’s Passover account (John 19:42, where the sixth hour is on the “eve of the Passover”) it seems clear the author had to be using Jewish reckoning, which began at 6 a.m. This would make the time here in 1:39 to be 4 p.m. This may be significant: If the hour was late, Andrew and the unnamed disciple probably spent the night in the same house where Jesus was staying, and the events of 1:41-42 took place on the next day. The evidence for Westcott’s view, that the Gospel is using Roman time, is very slim. The Roman reckoning which started at midnight was only used by authorities as legal time (for contracts, official documents, etc.). Otherwise, the Romans too reckoned time from 6 a.m. (e.g., Roman sundials are marked VI, not XII, for noon).
12 tn Grk “who heard from John.”
13 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
14 tc Most witnesses (א* L Ws Ï) read πρῶτος (prwtos) here instead of πρῶτον (prwton). The former reading would be a predicate adjective and suggest that Andrew “was the first” person to proselytize another regarding Jesus. The reading preferred, however, is the neuter πρῶτον, used as an adverb (BDAG 893 s.v. πρῶτος 1.a.β.), and it suggests that the first thing that Andrew did was to proselytize Peter. The evidence for this reading is early and weighty: Ì66,75 א2 A B Θ Ψ 083 Ë1,13 892 al lat.
15 sn Naturally part of Andrew’s concept of the Messiah would have been learned from John the Baptist (v. 40). However, there were a number of different messianic expectations in 1st century Palestine (see the note on “Who are you?” in v. 19), and it would be wrong to assume that what Andrew meant here is the same thing the author means in the purpose statement at the end of the Fourth Gospel, 20:31. The issue here is not whether the disciples’ initial faith in Jesus as Messiah was genuine or not, but whether their concept of who Jesus was grew and developed progressively as they spent time following him, until finally after his resurrection it is affirmed in the climactic statement of John’s Gospel, the affirmation of Thomas in 20:28.
16 tn Both Greek “Christ” and Hebrew and Aramaic “Messiah” mean “the one who has been anointed.”
sn This is a parenthetical note by the author. See the note on Christ in 1:20.
17 tn Grk “He brought him”; both referents (Andrew, Simon) have been specified in the translation for clarity.
18 tc The reading “Simon, son of John” is well attested in Ì66,75,106 א B* L 33 pc it co. The majority of
19 sn This is a parenthetical note by the author. The change of name from Simon to Cephas is indicative of the future role he will play. Only John among the gospel writers gives the Greek transliteration (Κηφᾶς, Khfas) of Simon’s new name, Qéphâ (which is Galilean Aramaic). Neither Πέτρος (Petros) in Greek nor Qéphâ in Aramaic is a normal proper name; it is more like a nickname.
20 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity. Jesus is best taken as the subject of εὑρίσκει (Jeuriskei), since Peter would scarcely have wanted to go to Galilee.
21 sn No explanation is given for why Jesus wanted to set out for Galilee, but probably he wanted to go to the wedding at Cana (about a two day trip).
22 tn Grk “and he.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
23 tn Grk “and Jesus said.”
24 sn Although the author thought of the town as in Galilee (12:21), Bethsaida technically was in Gaulanitis (Philip the Tetrarch’s territory) across from Herod’s Galilee. There may have been two places called Bethsaida, or this may merely reflect popular imprecision – locally it was considered part of Galilee, even though it was just east of the Jordan river. This territory was heavily Gentile (which may explain why Andrew and Philip both have Gentile names).
25 tn Probably ἀπό (apo) indicates “originally from” in the sense of birthplace rather than current residence; Mark 1:21, 29 seems to locate the home of Andrew and Peter at Capernaum. The entire remark (v. 44) amounts to a parenthetical comment by the author.
26 sn Nathanael is traditionally identified with Bartholomew (although John never describes him as such). He appears here after Philip, while in all lists of the twelve except in Acts 1:13, Bartholomew follows Philip. Also, the Aramaic Bar-tolmai means “son of Tolmai,” the surname; the man almost certainly had another name.
27 tn “Also” is not in the Greek text, but is implied.
28 tn Grk “And Nathanael.”
29 tn Grk “said to him.”
30 sn Can anything good come out of Nazareth? may be a local proverb expressing jealousy among the towns.
map For location see Map1-D3; Map2-C2; Map3-D5; Map4-C1; Map5-G3.
31 tn Grk “And Philip said to him.”
32 tn Grk “said about him.”
33 tn Or “treachery.”
sn An allusion to Ps 32:2.
34 tn Grk “answered and said to him.” This is somewhat redundant in English and has been simplified in the translation to “replied.”
35 sn Many have speculated about what Nathanael was doing under the fig tree. Meditating on the Messiah who was to come? A good possibility, since the fig tree was used as shade for teaching or studying by the later rabbis (Ecclesiastes Rabbah 5:11). Also, the fig tree was symbolic for messianic peace and plenty (Mic 4:4, Zech 3:10.)
36 tn Although βασιλεύς (basileus) lacks the article it is definite due to contextual and syntactical considerations. See ExSyn 263.
37 sn Nathanael’s confession – You are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel – is best understood as a confession of Jesus’ messiahship. It has strong allusions to Ps 2:6-7, a well-known messianic psalm. What Nathanael’s exact understanding was at this point is hard to determine, but “son of God” was a designation for the Davidic king in the OT, and Nathanael parallels it with King of Israel here.
38 tn Grk “answered and said to him.” This has been simplified in the translation to “said to him.”
39 sn What are the greater things Jesus had in mind? In the narrative this forms an excellent foreshadowing of the miraculous signs which began at Cana of Galilee.
40 tn Grk “and he said to him.”
41 tn Grk “Truly, truly, I say to you.”
42 sn The title Son of Man appears 13 times in John’s Gospel. It is associated especially with the themes of crucifixion (3:14; 8:28), revelation (6:27; 6:53), and eschatological authority (5:27; 9:35). The title as used in John’s Gospel has for its background the son of man figure who appears in Dan 7:13-14 and is granted universal regal authority. Thus for the author, the emphasis in this title is not on Jesus’ humanity, but on his heavenly origin and divine authority.