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John 9:35-38

Context
The Man’s Response to Jesus

9:35 Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, so he found the man 1  and said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” 2  9:36 The man 3  replied, 4  “And who is he, sir, that 5  I may believe in him?” 9:37 Jesus told him, “You have seen him; he 6  is the one speaking with you.” 7  9:38 [He said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him. 8 

1 tn Grk “found him”; the referent (the man) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

2 tc Although most witnesses (A L Θ Ψ 070 0250 Ë1,13 33 Ï lat) have θεοῦ (qeou, “of God”) instead of ἀνθρώπου (anqrwpou, “of man”) here, the better witnesses (Ì66,75 א B D W sys) have ἀνθρώπου. Not only is the external evidence decidedly on the side of ἀνθρώπου, but it is difficult to see such early and diverse witnesses changing θεοῦ to ἀνθρώπου. The wording “Son of Man” is thus virtually certain.

3 tn Grk “That one.”

4 tn Grk answered and said.” This has been simplified in the translation to “replied.”

5 tn Or “And who is he, sir? Tell me so that…” Some translations supply elliptical words like “Tell me” (NIV, NRSV) following the man’s initial question, but the shorter form given in the translation is clear enough.

6 tn Grk “that one.”

7 tn The καίκαί (kaikai) construction would normally be translated “both – and”: “You have both seen him, and he is the one speaking with you.” In this instance the English semicolon was used instead because it produces a smoother and more emphatic effect in English.

8 sn Assuming the authenticity of John 9:38-39a (see the tc note following the bracket in v. 39), the man’s response after Jesus’ statement of v. 37 is extremely significant: He worshiped Jesus. In the Johannine context the word would connote its full sense: This was something due God alone. Note also that Jesus did not prevent the man from doing this. The verb προσκυνέω (proskunew) is used in John 4:20-25 of worshiping God, and again with the same sense in 12:20. This would be the only place in John’s Gospel where anyone is said to have worshiped Jesus using this term. As such, it forms the climax of the story of the man born blind, but the uniqueness of the concept of worshiping Jesus at this point in John's narrative (which reaches its ultimate climax in the confession of Thomas in John 20:28) may suggest it is too early for such a response and it represents a later scribal addition.



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