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John 13:31-35 - Here is a new Commandment to go along with a new soul in new flesh

Updated: Mar 28, 2022

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At the last supper, when Judas had gone out, Jesus said, "Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, 'Where I am going, you cannot come.' I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."


This is the Gospel selection that will be read aloud by a priest on the fifth Sunday of Easter, Year C, according to the lectionary for the Episcopal Church. It will be preceded by a mandatory Easter season reading from Acts, this time Peter telling the Christians of Jerusalem why he met a Gentile. He told them, “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. There was something like a large sheet coming down from heaven, being lowered by its four corners; and it came close to me. As I looked at it closely I saw four-footed animals, beasts of prey, reptiles, and birds of the air. I also heard a voice saying to me, `Get up, Peter; kill and eat.'” That will be followed by a singing of Psalm 148, where David said to praise Yahweh, singing, “He made them stand fast for ever and ever; he gave them a law which shall not pass away.” That will be followed by a reading from John’s Revelation, where he heard the voice of Yahweh telling him, “See, I am making all things new.”

It should be realized that John did not write “At the last supper, when Judas had gone out.” The NRSV shows that written translating as, “When he had gone out.” Because this is verse thirty-one, John was writing with the expectation that the reader had read the prior thirty verses; and, verses twenty-two to thirty tell of Jesus announcing to the group that one in attendance would betray him. When Peter asked who that was, John told of Jesus saying, “He is the one whom I will dip the morsel and give it to.” He then gave the morsel to Judas Iscariot; and, he was instantly filled with the spirit of Satan. Jesus then told Judas to go and do what he would do, with the other disciples thinking Jesus was sending Judas out to buy something for the evening’s Seder (like more wine), because he was the money man. Thus, Judas got up and left; and, that is where verse thirty-one begins.

Relative to that “morsel dipped,” this is said by some to be the final bite of sacrificial lamb, which is the ending of the dinner part of the Seder meal. With that last morsel eaten (everyone has a charred bone of lamb on his or her plate), the women would get up and ‘clear the tables,’ with the free-flowing of wine to begin. This means the last bite would be when others would also get up from their reclining positions and begin moving about. This is why the disciples did not understand that Jesus had signaled who his betrayer was, but Judas getting up to leave did not seem like he had been pointed out as such. Everyone expected Judas to return, which means his wife and children would have remained in attendance, themselves unaware what was going on. If all the disciples were in attendance, so too would be their families.

It is important to know there are two Seder meals each Passover. One is on the evening (after 6:00 P.M.) of 14 Nisan (which is officially 15 Nisan) and another on the evening of 15 Nisan (officially 16 Nisan). The ‘first supper’ was held in Bethany, at the home of Simon the Leper. It was officially a Sabbath after nightfall (six o’clock P.M.) when that Seder was held. The next day was the Sabbath, so travel from Bethany, to the upper room in the Essene Quarter of Jerusalem would have been done after six, so that distance could be travelled. While that would technically be a Sunday, the first day of the week, the “last supper” room was prepared on the prior Friday (14 Nisan), so all the necessary arrangements (food, wine, plates, cups, pillows, etc.) would have been ready as soon as everyone arrived. Not all attendees would have come from Bethany; but all in attendance knew beforehand where this “last supper” would be held.

The missing element of verse thirty-one is the capitalized first word “Hote,” which means “When” or “At which time.” This makes the timing of when Judas Iscariot left the Seder event be divinely elevated in meaning. This capitalization cannot be taken as some ‘ho hum’ “next” word. Everything written afterwards in verse thirty-one is dependent on this divine timing of “When,” which is less about Judas and all about Jesus.

The words that follow “When” say (in English translation), “therefore he had come out.” The Greek word written (“exēlthen”) is the third-person singular Aorist Indicative Active form of “exerchomai,” which means “to go or come out of.” Following a divinely elevated word of timing, with the segment following this will be found to be stating the name “Jesus,” the “departure” of Judas meant the “coming out” of “Jesus.” In terms of someone rescued by drowning, to say “out with the bad air, in with the good,” the removal of Judas the betrayer from the midst of the Seder meal recognition (a Commanded event) meant Jesus was free to teach his disciples openly, without need to keep from making declarations that could be misused against him and his followers. His "coming out" was from his soul being expressed.

When “Jesus “ then spoke to his disciples, John capitalized the word “Nyn,” which divinely elevates the “Present,” as “Now.” With Judas was sent to do his betrayal (known by Jesus to bring forth his arrest quickly), “the Present” was then when Jesus said “(he) has been bestowed with esteem this Son of this of mankind”. This says the “honor” given by the Father to the “Son” was free to be expressed one last evening.

With that said, John then separated that statement from the next, while marking it with the word “kai,” which denotes importance that must be added to what Jesus said. Following the “kai,” Jesus said, “this God has been bestowed with esteem in his soul [“himself”].” This means that after Jesus said the “Son of this of mankind has been glorified,” where “Son” (capitalized only) implied Yahweh was his Father, the importance that was added stated the “Son” (“this”) was a relationship with “God” [Yahweh] that “has been glorified” in “Jesus’ soul (“himself”). The importance of that says Jesus of “mankind” (not a capitalized word, thereby a statement of Jesus being a commonly born physical “man”) was “glorified” or “bestowed esteem” in “his soul” (“himself”). He was not the physical son of God. He was the Spiritual Son of the Father, Yahweh, placed within human flesh ("man").

With that statement about Jesus being the “Son” of the Father, what he then stated in verse thirty-two needs to be seen as a statement that extends beyond the physical body of Jesus having a “soul glorified,” to all who have souls in bodies of flesh. This is why verse thirty-two begins with the ‘conditional conjunction’ word “if.” According to HELPS Word-studies, the Greek word “ei” properly expresses “a condition, thought of as real, or to denote assumptions" (i.e. viewed as factual. for the sake of argument) (BAGD). Accordingly, 1487 (ei) should not be translated "since," but rather always "if" – since the assumption may only be portrayed as valid (true, factual).” Thus, verse thirty-two is not a statement about Jesus, who was indeed the “Son,” one who “has been bestowed with esteem” by “God” in “his soul” (“himself”); it, therefore, is relative to his disciples that he stated this condition that had to be met.

The condition of fact that must be found is then said to be “this God he is honored within to one’s soul (“autō” as a generic form of “self,” thus a “soul”). While all of Jesus’ disciples were male, the word could equally translate as the word “autō” that John wrote Jesus said about “his soul” (“himself”), where “his soul” would apply to those male disciples. However, knowing the room was filled with both men and women followers of Jesus, the generic must be applied; as Jesus was placing the condition of fact before all there at that time.

Following that conditional statement, John wrote a comma mark of separation and began the next segment with the word “kai,” showing importance related to that conditional being true. Jesus said importantly, “this God (he) will honor [bestow esteem] of himself within to his own”. Here, the word “auton” (“himself”) has a double meaning, as “one’s soul” becoming the possession of Yahweh, and “Yahweh’s Spirit” (as “his soul,” from “himself”) doing the possessing of a soul. When this leads to Jesus saying “hautō,” in the third-person singular Dative Masculine, this states the possession of “his own.” The preposition “en,” as always should be read in Scripture, means “within,” which is where souls stay. Thus, the important addition stated by Jesus says, “God will enter one’s soul and make one His own” … if the conditions are met.

Here, John finished verse thirty-two by again placing a comma mark of separation, followed by another “kai” of importance. This importance says the possession of God will not take long, once the conditions have been met. In fact, they will “immediately, at once, or directly” find that “he will bestow esteem” … the same as God bestowed upon Jesus … “within … to one’s soul” (“himself or oneself”). This is an ‘all or nothing’ scenario. When the conditions have not been met, then there is no ‘calibration’ or ‘degrees’ of esteem earned by following Jesus (notice the Judas betrayal factor here). However, once one’s total submission to Yahweh is determined to be marriage worthy, then … bam! … one’s soul “immediately will be glorified” like Jesus.

Following a period mark at the end of verse thirty-two, verse thirty-three begins a new line of thought being stated by Jesus, where the first word is a capitalized “Teknia.” The capitalization shows a divine level of meaning applied to the typical word usage, which is “little children.” The root word, “teknion,” properly means “a little child,” but the figurative use implies “someone deeply loved (endeared).” The capitalization divinely raises this “endearment” to a spiritual level, where love is one of the conditions that must be met: love of God and His love returned. This love must be seen as Spiritual, which is well beyond the scope of love defined by human emotions and feelings. Thus, the capitalization of “Dearly Beloveds” must be read, so the following command to “love one another” is understood.

In this verse, the NRSV has mutated what Jesus next said, to make it appear he was giving them warning that he would be taken away from then shortly. That is not what Jesus said. Following the capitalized “Teknia,” John wrote a comma mark of separation, so Jesus next said, “in addition small in company with your souls [“yourselves”] I exist”. Here, the mistake made by the NRSV is to translate “eti” as being stated relative to time (as “still” or “yet”). However, when it is read relative to a degree, the same word means “even, further, more, in addition.” Here, one needs to know that all of the disciples had been sent into ‘intern’ ministry, where each was accompanied by the soul of Jesus – “a little in addition with their souls” – so they could get a taste of what being “bestowed esteem” by Yahweh meant. This means Jesus said “a little of his soul existed within them already,” but not yet ‘the full meal deal.’ That would come later.

It is from that ‘taste’ that John then placed another comma mark of separation, followed by his writing of Jesus telling his disciples, “you will seek my soul” [“mine” or ‘myself”]. That becomes a prophecy of the disciples being transformed into full-fledged Apostles after Jesus would raise them from the dead spiritually; but they all had to “seek Jesus’ soul,’ through submission to the Father Yahweh.

Following that prophetic statement, John placed a semi-colon mark of separation that begins a new line of relative thought, followed by a one-word statement that is “kai.” That increases the importance of that said next, which is an additional statement relative to the presence of Jesus’ soul within (just a little) and seeking his presence fully. That important second statement says, “according to the manner in which I said to those Jews because : In what place my soul [“I”] brings under , your souls [“you” or “yourselves”] not you have power to have gone [or “to have come”] , kai to your souls [“you” or “yourselves”] I say at this moment .

This importantly says that everyone Jesus has sent “a little” of “his soul” (up till then) had been “Jewish” or “Jews.” That is because Jesus was a divine soul sent only to the ‘children of Yahweh.’ So, “in the manner in which” Jesus touched the souls of “Jews,” he likewise touched the souls of his disciples. Jesus’ soul [“I”] became one with those Jews who were “brought under” his lead, making his physical body become a Lord or Master (or Teacher) that others bowed down before. Their soul were marked by Jesus as his, so the Father would receive them. Without that “little bit of Jesus’ soul within their souls,” none of them “has the power” to share their souls in that way. This was importantly stated by Jesus (physically) “at that moment,” but his words went deeper, speaking to “their souls.” None (other than John, perhaps) would recall these words before their souls had been raised from the dead, as Jesus reborn. Then their souls would remember these words.

The capitalization of “Jews” (“Ioudaiois”) is easily mistaken as a reference to the “Jews” of the temple in Jerusalem; but that denies the divine elevation in meaning a capitalized word takes on. The word “Jew” means “Praiser.” Thus, the plural refers to all who “Praise Yahweh” as having become one with their souls [read Psalm 148, which sings about “Praise YAH!”]. Since the temple elite (the Sanhedrin) praised nobody but themselves, they are not the intent of this that Jesus said. It is important to grasp that.

Verse thirty-four then begins with a capitalized “Entolēn,” which is Jesus stating “a Commandment.” Because the word is capitalized and taken to a divine level of meaning, it is not so much Jesus giving a “Commandment,” but Yahweh speaking one through His Son. This is a “new” commandment, which is not to be taken as a ‘never before been commanded’ “Commandment.” Here, the use of “kainēn” should be compared to its similar usage in Revelation 21 (the Epistle for this fifth Sunday of Easter). Just as John was shown a “spirit new” [“heaven”] and a “body new” [“earth”], the “Commandment” is an existing “Order” given, but one that needs to be seen in a divinely elevated “new” light of awareness. This “newness” is found because it is not “given” to your heads. Instead, Jesus said, “I give to your souls" [“you” or “yourselves”]. That “new” light shone on an old Commandment,” now understood within, saying, “your souls [2nd person plural “you”] should love one another.” The alternate view of “one another” (“allélón”) is as “themselves” or “yourselves,” so Jesus said this “new Commandment” is to love the souls of others with your soul.” That is not the same “love” as physical love of a body to another body. This "same self love" is just as Jesus did love, because the soul of Jesus will then be within the souls of his disciples. As Jesus reborn, they will all share the "love of Jesus" as Jesus.

Following John placing a semi-colon mark, making a separately relative statement be said, Jesus further “Commanded,” “according to the manner in which my soul [1st person “I”] has loved your souls [“you” or “yourselves”] , for the purpose that kai your souls [“you” or “yourselves”] should love the souls of others.” In the two subjunctive uses of “agapate” (“you should love”), this becomes indicative of the ‘conditional’ first stated by “if.” It says that in order to receive the soul of Jesus fully within one’s own soul, one must meet this condition of “soul love,” which (again) is well beyond all physical definitions of human “love.” The “love” of Jesus to his disciples, where he called them “Dearly Beloveds,” is him stating his divine “love” for those disciples (now that Judas had “departed”) was “a little of his soul merged with their souls.” That sharing of souls is what Jesus said here; and, it must be understood that Jesus waited until Judas had left to speak of this “love one another as I have loved you.” Not everyone in the world falls into this category of the conditional requirement of Yahweh’s love being shared.

This exclusivity is then stated clearly in verse thirty-five. The first word of this verse is not capitalized, but the use of “en” must always be read as meaning that “within,” which becomes an unseen source of brotherly “love” that is soul-related (not blood or physical). The whole of this verse literally translates into English as saying, “within this (he) will know all because to my soul [“mine” or “myself”] disciples you exist , if love your souls possesses within to other souls [“one another”].” This says “all” will be reborn as Jesus’ soul in their soul; and, that divine possession will bond all who are souls in this state as brothers (including females) in divine love. It is a statement that says all Christians will be souls possessed by Yahweh and Jesus, Father and the Son, therefore “all” will be Anointed by Yahweh’s Spirit as a Christ.” The conditional for being a Christian is possessing the love of Yahweh, as His Son reborn.

As the Gospel selection for the fifth Sunday of Easter, which is a season placing sincere focus on souls being raised from the dead by the resurrection of Jesus’ soul within theirs, the Commandment given by Jesus to his closest disciples (sans Judas Iscariot) says be Jesus reborn. This selection from John is only read during the Year C Easter season, which means it must be seen in this light of resurrection. The NRSV translation makes it harder to see the truth of what is stated; and, the common misjudgment of Jesus saying to love everybody in the world simply is not true. Jesus “Commanded” a “new” self be raised; and, that “new” self is Christian, as Jesus reborn. This makes a common bond of love exist between all souls that have been raised from the dead, which keeps one from ever returning to the dead state that does not sacrifice a soul to serve Yahweh, as His Son resurrected in the flesh (not his own). It is very important that these five verse of John’s Gospel be understood; or, one’s soul will remain lost.

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