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Ferrar Fenton Bible: John 8

The Gospel as Recorded by St. John

The Light of the World

Jesus again addressed them, saying:

“I am the Light of the world. My followers shall not walk in the darkness, but shall go out into the Light of Life.”

The Pharisees, therefore, said to Him:

“You are giving evidence about Yourself; Your evidence is not reliable.”

Jesus replied, and said to them:

“Although I give evidence about Myself, My evidence is nevertheless reliable; because I know from where I come, and where I go; but you neither know where I come from, nor where I am going. You condemn from a human standpoint; I Myself condemn none. Yet, even if I should condemn, My decision would nevertheless be valid; because I am not alone, but I and He Who sent Me. Moreover, in your own law it is written that the evidence of two men is valid. I am witnessing about Myself; and the Father Who sent Me gives evidence about Me.”

“Where is Your Father?” they therefore asked Him.

Jesus answered: “You neither know Me, nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”

These remarks were made by Jesus in the treasury, while teaching in the temple; and none arrested Him, because His time had not yet come.

The Fate of the Unbeliever

He, therefore, further said to them:

“I am going away, and you will search for Me, and will die in you sin. Where I am going, you are unable to follow.”

The Judeans therefore said:

“Is He going to kill Himself? Since He says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot follow.’”

“You are from below,” He answered them, “I am from above; you belong to this world; I am not from this world. I therefore told you that you would die in your sins; for unless you believe that I AM, you will die in your sins.”

“You! Who are You?” they then asked Him.

Jesus answered them:

“What I told you from the beginning; I have much to say and decide about you. But My Sender is reliable, and what I have learned from Him, that I declare to the world.”

However, they did not perceive that He spoke to them about the Father.

Jesus, therefore, said to them:

“When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then will you know that I AM, and that I do nothing from My own self; but as the Father has instructed Me, I must speak. And My Sender is with Me; He has not left Me alone; because I do what is pleasing to Him everywhere.”

While He was speaking in this way, many became believers in Him.

The Slavery of Sin

Jesus said, therefore, to the Judeans who had not believed Him:1

“If you establish yourselves in My doctrine, you will in reality be My disciples; and you will recognize the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

“We are offspring of Abraham,” they answered Him, “and have never at any time been enslaved to anyone; what do You mean by saying ‘You will be set free?’’

“I tell you plainly,” replied Jesus, “that whoever sins is a slave of sin. The slave does not constantly stay with the family; the Son stays permanently. If, therefore, the Son shall set you at liberty, you will be free in reality. I am aware that you are the offspring of Abraham; yet you plot to murder Me, because My thought has not a place in you. What I have seen with the Father I declare; and what you have learned from your father you also do.”

They retorted, and said to Him, “Our father is Abraham.”

“If you were children of Abraham,” Jesus remarked, “you would continue the works of Abraham. But now you plot to murder Me; a Man who has told you the truth, which He learned from God. Abraham did not do so. You do the works of your own father.”

“We were not born of fornication,” they answered Him; “we have the same Father, God.”

“If God were your Father,” Jesus said to them, “you would respect Me; for I came from God, and am here; for I have not come of Myself; but He sent Me. Why do you not comprehend My language? Because you will not listen to My message. You are from your father, the Devil; and it is your desire to practice the lusts of your father. He was himself a murderer from the first; and stands not by the truth, because there is not truth in him. When he speaks falsehood, he speaks in his own way; for he is a liar, and the father of such. Because I speak the truth, however, you will not believe Me. Who among you can convict Me of wrong? If I speak the truth, why will you not believe Me? Whoever is attracted by God, listens to the thoughts of God; for this reason you do not listen, because you are not in harmony with God.”

The Judeans retorted, and said to Him: “Were we not correct in saying that you are a Samaritan, and have a demon?”

“I have not a demon,” replied Jesus, “but I honour My Father, and you dishonour Me. I do not, however, strive for reputation for Myself; there is One Who investigates and judges. I tell you most assuredly that if a man holds on to My message, he will by no means see death for ever.”

“Now we know that You possess a demon,” the Judeans retorted to Him. “Abraham died, as well as the prophets; yet You say, ‘If a man holds fast My message, he will not taste of death for ever.’ Are You greater that our forefather Abraham, who died? And the prophets died. Who do You make Yourself?”

Jesus answered: “If I should praise Myself, My praise is worthless. There is My Father Who is praising Me; of Whom you say that He is your God; and you have not recognized Him; but I know Him. And if I should say that I do not know Him, I should be like yourselves, a liar. But I do know Him, and retain His message. Your father, Abraham, exulted that he should see My day; and he saw it, and was delighted.”

“You are not yet fifty years old,” said the Judeans to Him in reply, “and have You seen Abraham?”

Jesus said to them:

“Most assuredly I tell you, before Abraham was born, I AM.”

They then took up stones to hurl at Him; but Jesus became invisible, and went out from the temple.


  1. Note on v.31. – It is clear from the sense that the Greek negative “µη”, “not”, has been omitted from the Text by some early copier, so I restore it, to retain the original purport. F. F.

Transcribed by JT Atkinson on 02-17-2015