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John 8:20

Context
8:20 (Jesus 1  spoke these words near the offering box 2  while he was teaching in the temple courts. 3  No one seized him because his time 4  had not yet come.) 5 

John 10:39

Context
10:39 Then 6  they attempted 7  again to seize him, but he escaped their clutches. 8 

John 19:6

Context
19:6 When the chief priests and their officers saw him, they shouted out, “Crucify 9  him! Crucify him!” 10  Pilate said, 11  “You take him and crucify him! 12  Certainly 13  I find no reason for an accusation 14  against him!”

1 tn Grk “He”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

2 tn The term γαζοφυλάκιον (gazofulakion) can be translated “treasury” or “treasure room” in this context. BDAG 186 s.v. 1 notes, “It can be taken in this sense J 8:20 (sing.) in (or at) the treasury.” BDAG 186 s.v. 2 argues that the occurrences of this word in the synoptic gospels also refer to the treasury: “For Mk 12:41, 43; Lk 21:1 the mng. contribution box or receptacle is attractive. Acc. to Mishnah, Shekalim 6, 5 there were in the temple 13 such receptacles in the form of trumpets. But even in these passages the general sense of ‘treasury’ is prob., for the contributions would go [into] the treasury via the receptacles.” Based upon the extra-biblical evidence (see sn following), however, the translation opts to refer to the actual receptacles and not the treasury itself.

sn The offering box probably refers to the receptacles in the temple forecourt by the Court of Women used to collect freewill offerings. These are mentioned by Josephus, J. W. 5.5.2 (5.200), 6.5.2 (6.282); Ant. 19.6.1 (19.294); and in 1 Macc 14:49 and 2 Macc 3:6, 24, 28, 40 (see also Mark 12:41; Luke 21:1).

3 tn Grk “the temple.”

4 tn Grk “his hour.”

5 sn This is a parenthetical note by the author.

6 tc It is difficult to decide between ἐζήτουν οὖν (ezhtoun oun, “then they were seeking”; Ì66 א A L W Ψ Ë1,13 33 pm lat), ἐζήτουν δέ (ezhtoun de, “now they were seeking”; Ì45 and a few versional witnesses), καὶ ἐζήτουν (kai ezhtoun, “and they were seeking”; D), and ἐζήτουν (Ì75vid B Γ Θ 700 pm). Externally, the most viable readings are ἐζήτουν οὖν and ἐζήτουν. Transcriptionally, the οὖν could have dropped out via haplography since the verb ends in the same three letters. On the other hand, it is difficult to explain the readings with δέ or καί if ἐζήτουν οὖν is original; such readings would more likely have arisen from the simple ἐζήτουν. Intrinsically, John is fond of οὖν, using it some 200 times. Further, this Gospel begins relatively few sentences without some conjunction. The minimal support for the δέ and καί readings suggests that they arose either from the lone verb reading (which would thus be prior to their respective Vorlagen but not necessarily the earliest reading) or through carelessness on the part of the scribes. Indeed, the ancestors of Ì45 and D may have committed haplography, leaving later scribes in the chain to guess at the conjunction needed. In sum, the best reading appears to be ἐζήτουν οὖν.

7 tn Grk “they were seeking.”

8 tn Grk “he departed out of their hand.”

sn It is not clear whether the authorities simply sought to “arrest” him, or were renewing their attempt to stone him (cf. John 10:31) by seizing him and taking him out to be stoned. In either event, Jesus escaped their clutches. Nor is it clear whether Jesus’ escape is to be understood as a miracle. If so, the text gives little indication and even less description. What is clear is that until his “hour” comes, Jesus is completely safe from the hands of men: His enemies are powerless to touch him until they are permitted to do so.

9 sn Crucifixion was the cruelest form of punishment practiced by the Romans. Roman citizens could not normally undergo it. It was reserved for the worst crimes, like treason and evasion of due process in a capital case. The Roman statesman and orator Cicero (106-43 b.c.) called it “a cruel and disgusting penalty” (Against Verres 2.5.63-66 §§163-70); Josephus (J. W. 7.6.4 [7.203]) called it the worst of deaths.

10 tn The word “him” is not in the Greek text. Direct objects were often omitted in Greek when clear from context.

11 tn Grk “said to them.” The words “to them” are not translated because they are unnecessary in contemporary English style.

12 sn How are Pilate’s words “You take him and crucify him” to be understood? Was he offering a serious alternative to the priests who wanted Jesus crucified? Was he offering them an exception to the statement in 18:31 that the Jewish authorities did not have the power to carry out a death penalty? Although a few scholars have suggested that the situation was at this point so far out of Pilate’s control that he really was telling the high priests they could go ahead and crucify a man he had found to be innocent, this seems unlikely. It is far more likely that Pilate’s statement should be understood as one of frustration and perhaps sarcasm. This seems to be supported by the context, for the Jewish authorities make no attempt at this point to seize Jesus and crucify him. Rather they continue to pester Pilate to order the crucifixion.

13 tn On this use of γάρ (gar) used in exclamations and strong affirmations, see BDAG 190 s.v. γάρ 3.

14 tn Or “find no basis for an accusation”; Grk “find no cause.”



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