1 tn Or “the Jewish authorities”; Grk “the Jews.” In NT usage the term ᾿Ιουδαῖοι (Ioudaioi) may refer to the entire Jewish people, the residents of Jerusalem and surrounding territory, the authorities in Jerusalem, or merely those who were hostile to Jesus. (For further information see R. G. Bratcher, “‘The Jews’ in the Gospel of John,” BT 26 : 401-9.) Here the phrase refers to the Jewish authorities or leaders in Jerusalem. It was the Pharisees who had begun this line of questioning in John 8:13, and there has been no clear change since then in the identity of Jesus’ opponents.
2 tn The imperfect verb has been translated with ingressive force (“began to say”) because the comments that follow were occasioned by Jesus’ remarks in the preceding verse about his upcoming departure.