More Than You Can Handle, John 6: 1-14


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“More Than You Can Handle”

John 6:1-14

September 15, 2019

Faith Presbyterian Church – Morning Service

Pr. Nicoletti

 

Our Scripture reading this morning is from The Gospel of John, chapter six, verses one through fourteen.

 

Please listen carefully, for this is God’s word for us this morning.

 

6:1 After this Jesus went away to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. And a large crowd was following him, because they saw the signs that he was doing on the sick. Jesus went up on the mountain, and there he sat down with his disciples. Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand. Lifting up his eyes, then, and seeing that a large crowd was coming toward him, Jesus said to Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?” He said this to test him, for he himself knew what he would do. Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread would not be enough for each of them to get a little.” One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?” 10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, about five thousand in number. 11 Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated. So also the fish, as much as they wanted. 12 And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost.” 13 So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves left by those who had eaten. 14 When the people saw the sign that he had done, they said, “This is indeed the Prophet who is to come into the world!”

 

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

 

“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” [1 Peter 1:24-25]

 

Let’s pray …

 

Lord, you are our portion,

and so we commit ourselves to keep your word.

We ask you with all our hearts to show us your favor,

and be gracious with us according to your promise.

When we consider our ways,

turn our feet to your testimonies.

And as we hear your word now,

give us a sense of urgency to conform ourselves to it,

so that we act on it without delay.

Grant this we ask, for Jesus’s sake. Amen.

[Based on Psalm 119:57-60]

 

Our story this morning is Jesus’s miraculous feeding of the five thousand. The four Gospels include stories of many different miracles that Jesus performed. And that being said, it is noteworthy that this miracle – the feeding of the five thousand – is the only miracle from the public ministry of Jesus (besides his resurrection) that is narrated in all four Gospels. [Brown, 236; Morris, 338]

 

All four Gospel writers felt it was essential for God’s people to consider it. All four felt it had something to teach us that was important for us as the people of God.

 

On one level it is a miracle that fits a pattern we have seen before – particularly in the miracle at Cana of turning water into wine. Jesus – whom the Apostle John has already told us is God, the second person of the Trinity, through whom all things were made – Jesus does here what he, as God, has done for all of history. Only here he does it in an unusual way. Here he skips the typical intermediary steps.

 

Saint Augustine makes this point in his sermon on this text – he asks: “Who, after all, even now feeds the whole world but the one who creates the crops from a few grains? So, on this occasion, the Lord acted as God. Just as he [ordinarily] multiplies a few grains into the crops, so too did he multiply the five loaves in his hands. For there was power in the hands of Christ. Those five loaves were seeds of a kind, not indeed committed to the earth but seeds which were multiplied by the one who made the earth.” [Augustine, 24.1; p.423]

 

Augustine reminds us that just as every year God has multiplied grain, so he does it here – though in an unusual way, so as to catch our attention.

 

And in this miracle Jesus has indeed gotten our attention – and the attention of all four Evangelists, all four Gospel writers.

 

What then does he want us to see, now that he has gotten our attention?

 

Augustine again is helpful here. He reminds us that we are not just to notice the miracle and what it says about Christ’s power, but we are to “question the miracles themselves about what they are telling us about Christ.” We must not stop at the surface appearance of the miracle, but ask what Jesus, is communicating to us through his deeds.

 

Augustine goes on and gives us an illustration of what he means. “We have seen,” he says, “we have looked upon something great, something outstanding and altogether divine, which could only be done by God; the deed has led us to admire the doer. But if, for example, we were to look at the beautiful letters on the pages of some book, we would not be satisfied with admiring the scribe’s skilful fingers in producing such a regular, neat and even script, without also reading what he was saying to us with it. Well, in the same way anyone who just takes a look at this deed is delighted by its beauty and filled with admiration for the craftsman; anyone though who takes the trouble to understand it is after a fashion reading it. Pictures, after all, are looked at in one way, letters in another. When you see a picture, that is all there is to it, to see it and admire it; when you see letters, that is not all there is to it, because you are being urged also to read them.”

 

Augustine helps us to see that the miracles of Jesus are not just displays of power, they are not only proofs of his identity, but they are also like a book written in beautiful calligraphy. To stop at the power of the miracle itself is like admiring the handwriting without reading the words they form. Our challenge instead is to ask what the miracle has to say to us – because since Jesus is the Word of God, as the Apostle John has told us, his deeds are also words to us.

 

The result of all this, Augustine says, is that “No detail, [of the text,] therefore is pointless, everything has a meaning, but someone has to understand what that is.” [Augustine, 24.2,6; pages 424, 427]

 

And so this morning we will consider this miracle of Jesus and try to “read” it together. Looking at the details of how the events play out, and then considering what they have to say for our own relationship to Christ.

 

So, with that in mind, we look to our text.

 

The first four verses set the context for us. Jesus had been performing healings. He then traveled to the other side of the Sea of Galilee with his closest disciples. A crowd, who had seen his works, and the healings he had done, then followed him. As the other accounts of this miracle tell us, it was getting towards the end of the day and the people did not have provisions with them.

 

And it is at that point, in verse five, that Jesus turns to Philip. Now – why Philip? Well, Philip was from the nearby town of Bethsaida. [Carson, 269] Jesus asking Philip is sort of like when you’re visiting a town and you ask someone from that town where a good place to get some food is. Philip’s a local. And so Jesus asks him where they can buy some bread.

 

Only … Jesus doesn’t just ask where he can buy bread for himself. He asks where they – where Jesus and his disciples – can buy bread for a huge crowd.

 

And we should appreciate how huge the crowd really was. We traditionally refer to this as the feeding of the five thousand, but it was probably the feeding of many more than that. We are told in verse ten that there were five thousand men, and Matthew, in his account specifies that that number did not include the women and children who were present. Commentators suggest that, depending on the ratio of men to women and children, there could have been anywhere from six thousand to twenty thousand people gathered before Jesus and the disciples that day. [Carson, 270]

 

And so though Philip’s response does reflect a lack of faith … we can in some ways relate to where it’s coming from.

 

Jesus just asked Philip to buy food for over five thousand people. And Philip blurts out that two hundred denarii – roughly eight months wages – would not even be enough for everyone to get a taste, let alone to fill their stomachs. [Carson, 269]

 

And we should pause, at this point, at the end of verse six, and appreciate the position that Jesus is putting Philip in.

 

There’s this common phrase I’ve often heard from other  Christians when they respond to someone who is struggling or suffering. One person will share a challenge or a difficulty in their life – whether a grief to them, or a task they need to do but feel insufficient for, or something else. And as they talk, their Christian friends will be listening, and then one of their Christian friends will place a hand on their shoulder and say to them reassuringly “Well, remember: God will never give us more than we can handle.”

 

And verse five through seven of John chapter six as an important reminder that that claim – the claim that God will never give us more than we can handle – is a lie.

 

Because right here, Jesus gives Philip more than he can handle. Jesus asks Philip to do something in an afternoon that Philip knows he could not even accomplish in eight months. If Philip worked hard for eight months, he would not even then earn enough to begin to feed the crowd that is in front of him. And Jesus has effectively asked him to do it right there, on the spot, that afternoon.

 

Jesus, we are told in verse six, is testing Philip – and he is testing Philip by giving him much, much more than Philip can handle. He’s effectively saying: Here you go, Philip! Here’s a task that is impossible for you to handle. Now what are you going to do?

 

The idea that God won’t give us more than we can handle seems to grow from a misreading of First Corinthians 10:13, which says “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” The Apostle Paul’s point in that verse is that God will never allow a situation where we can say that we had to sin because the temptation was too much for us – God will always give us a way to escape temptation.

 

But that verse is not promising that God will only give us the kinds of tasks or callings that we are able to handle in this life. In fact, the same Apostle Paul who wrote First Corinthians 10:13 tells us that that was not true in his own life.

 

In Second Corinthians 1:8 Paul writes: “For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself.

 

“We were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself.”

 

I don’t know about you, but it sure sounds to me like the Apostle Paul is telling us that God gave them more than they could handle themselves.

 

Paul tells the church in Corinth how God gave him more than he could handle. But he doesn’t stop there. He goes on to say in the next verse that that situation – that situation which felt to them like a death sentence – that God did it to them, he says “to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.”

 

That is an encouraging line. It’s reassuring. But what does it really mean?

 

Well, let’s return to John chapter six to find out.

 

Jesus hands Philip a task that is unquestionably beyond his strength and ability – were he to work at it for eight months he couldn’t do it even then, and Jesus is asking for it now. So what is Philip to do?

 

It’s Andrew who begins to show us the way. In verse nine Andrew shows up and says to Christ, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?”

 

Now, let’s consider a few things in Andrew’s response.

 

First, Andrew’s words are not exactly ringing words of confident faith. And yet … they are words of faith. There is something different about Andrew’s response when compared to Philip’s – even if Andrew tacks on a question of doubt at the end.

 

One commentator puts it like this – he writes “Philip doesn’t know what to do. Andrew doesn’t either, but [Andrew] brings the boy and his bread and fish to Jesus’ attention. The point is obvious, but we perhaps need to be reminded of it: so often we ourselves have no idea what to do, but the starting-point is always to bring what is there to the attention of Jesus. You can never tell what he’s going to do with it – though part of Christian faith is the expectation that he will do something we hadn’t thought of, something new and creative.” [Wright, 73]

 

Philip sees just the scarcity of resources. Andrew sees the scarcity just as clearly as Philip. But Andrew also brings to Jesus the little resources that are available.

 

And the resource he does bring … we should note … even those are not resources they really produced themselves. Even those are resources they received. Even the starting point, even what they have to offer to Jesus, was a gift.

 

And what they have to offer is itself pretty meager. Five barley loaves and two fish doesn’t sound like much for over five thousand people, but it’s actually even worse then we tend to imagine.

 

In terms of the quality of these resources: wheat bread was actually more common than barley loaves in Jesus’s day … but barley loaves were cheaper and used by the poor. The two fish were probably preserved fish, and meant to be something of a small tidbit to make the coarse barley bread more palatable. And then in terms of the quantity of the resources: the loaves themselves were likely quite small. Luke 11:5 seems to indicate that three such “loaves” were considered a meal for one person. [Brown, 233; Morris, 344; Carson, 270]

 

So we have a poor meal that would probably be considered a bit light for two people.

 

Jesus gives the disciples more than they can handle – he gives them an impossible task. And Andrew’s response is to take the meager gifts they have and offer them to Jesus, in faltering hope that Jesus will be able to do something with those gifts – small and poor though they may be.

 

Jesus then tells the disciples to have everyone sit down. And now, in a sense, we see the tentative faith of Andrew spread to the other disciples. Because even though they still have no idea how they are going to feed this huge crowd, when Jesus tells them to organize the people on the grass, the disciples obey. They go out and organize the people, implying that they should expect a meal, even though the disciples still have no idea where such a meal will come from.

 

John Calvin points out that the disciples should have known better – they should have had a stronger faith in Jesus’s ability to provide. But at the same time, Calvin tells us that we must appreciate the faith it took for the disciples to organize the crowd. “No small praise is due,” he writes, “to their cheerful obedience in now complying with this injunction [to make the people sit down], though they know not what is [Christ’s] intention or what advantage they will derive from what they are doing. […] And this,” Calvin goes on, “is the trial of true faith, when God commands men to walk, as it were, in darkness. For this purpose let us learn not to be wise in ourselves, but, amidst great confusion, still to hope for a prosperous issue, when we follow the guidance of God, who never disappoints his own people.” [Calvin, 230]

 

Jesus gives his disciples a task beyond what they can handle. In faith, the disciples hand their meager provisions over to Jesus – provisions that were themselves a gift – and then they obey Jesus’s command to proceed in the expectation of a meal for thousands.

 

Which brings us to verse eleven. From there we read: “Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated. So also the fish, as much as they wanted. And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, ‘Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost.’ So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves left by those who had eaten. When the people saw the sign that he had done, they said, ‘This is indeed the Prophet who is to come into the world!’”

 

Jesus gives his disciples a task beyond what they can handle – a task to care for and provide for a crowd – a task beyond their abilities. After Philip acknowledges their utter inability to handle this task themselves, Andrew presents Jesus with the small and feeble gifts they have on hand. Jesus commands them to begin serving the people, and they obey. And Jesus takes their five barley loaves and two fish and distributes it through the disciples to the people, until all have eaten their fill.

 

Augustine has urged us to not just admire this miracle but to “read” it – to see in it what it has to teach us about how God works with his people. And what we see is that Christ gives his people more than they can handle, in order that he might provide through them what they could not provide themselves.

 

One theologian puts it like this – he says that the disciples “need[ed] to rely on God as much for their giving as for their receiving. This is a lesson for every Christian: Jesus provides for our needs, but He also provides us with the resources to meet other people’s needs. That is the whole point, since the mission of Jesus brings good news to the poor.” [Leithart, 197]

 

Or as the Apostle Paul would put it: “We have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.” [2 Corinthians 4:7]

 

And surpassing power is indeed what was displayed, for after thousands were fed with a meal that had begun as something that was barely enough for two – after thousands had eaten their fill, twelve additional baskets were filled with the leftovers – a symbolic picture of how Jesus could have fed more … in fact, Jesus was prepared to feed all twelve tribes of Israel, should they come to him. [Carson, 271]

 

Our text this morning, is a picture of the spiritual reality of how God works in the lives of his people. It is, as Augustine pointed out, not just a mighty work that should lead us to marvel at the might and creative power of Jesus, but it is a word that was meant to be “read” – that was meant to show us our own spiritual reality and how Jesus works in the lives of his people and in the life of his Church.

 

And what it shows us is important. It is crucially important. It is important for a number of reasons. It is important in my life, it is important in your life, and it is important in the life of our church.

 

Let’s start with my life. Brothers and sisters of Faith Presbyterian Church, if John 6:1-14 is not a picture of how Christ works through his people – if it is not a picture of the spiritual reality of what Jesus does in our lives today, then I need to quit my job immediately. I need to meet with the session before the next service and I need to submit my resignation.

 

And that’s not me being overly dramatic. It’s not false humility. To be honest, it’s not real humility either. It’s just cold, hard realism.

 

There are people in this church – many people, in fact, who have been adult believers for longer than I have been alive. There are godly men and women who have been following Jesus faithfully two, or three, or even four times longer than I have been. There are elders at this church who have been elders for almost as long as I have been alive. There is a woman in this congregation who has served this church for ten times longer than I have so far. There is a man in this congregation (many of you know him) who, on the day that I was born, already had about as much pastoral experience as I have today.

 

What can I give to such Christians on a Sunday morning? What can I possibly produce in one week to feed them? Eight months of my feeble labors would not be enough to produce something that could even begin to reach their level. What do I have to offer?

 

All I’ve got is five barley loaves, and two small fish, and faith that Jesus Christ, by his power, can turn that into something that will fill them.

 

There are also people in this congregation who are struggling. They are in pain. They have (or someone they love has) sinned or have been sinned against in ways that have had deep effects on their lives. And they need support. They need spiritual care. And what do I as their pastor, have to give them? What can I possibly produce that would heal their pain? Eight months of my feeble labors would not be enough to begin to meet the needs of their souls. What do I have to offer?

 

All I’ve got is five barley loaves, and two small fish, and faith that Jesus Christ, by his power, can turn that into something that will fill them.

 

I could go on.

 

But what I want you to see is the spiritual reality that this miracle is pointing to, and what it means for our Christian lives.

 

First, it means that we must give up on relying on our own innate abilities to do whatever work God has called us to do. If you are doing the work of ministry that Christ calls his people to, then your own resources will only last so long. And when you reach their end – when you realize that you are no longer cut out for the work, that you are facing more than you can handle in yourself, our text tells you that then you must turn to Jesus, and offer him your five barley loaves and two small fish, and trust that Christ, by his power, can fill the spiritual need before you.

 

Second, it means that you need to ask if you have been saying no to things that you shouldn’t be. You need to consider if there are opportunities for you to serve, which you have declined because you don’t think you’re sufficient in yourself to do it, when, if you look at it realistically, you will never be sufficient in yourself to do it. You need to look at those opportunities and ask if it is from wisdom that you have declined – and it may be from wisdom, I’m not discounting that possibility – but you at least need to ask yourself if it is from wisdom … or if Jesus is testing you to see whether you will respond like Philip or like Andrew – to see whether you will throw your hands up or offer him your five barley loaves and two small fish.

 

Now, of course, this doesn’t mean that your gifting is irrelevant when you ask what God might be calling you to. Your gifts are just that – they are gifts to serve. It also doesn’t mean that you don’t need to work diligently on improving on the gifts you’ve been given, or employing the gifts you’ve been given – you absolutely do.

 

Nothing in this passage negates what the Bible tells us about the calling on our lives to diligently use the gifts God has given us for his kingdom and glory.

 

What it does remind us is that even with your best efforts, at the end of the day, you will be standing before five thousand hungry people with five barley loaves and two small fish … and so if you are not bringing your gifts to Christ, in faith that by his power he can fill the spiritual need before you, then you will either proceed under a delusion about your own abilities, or you will collapse in despair.

 

I know that is true for me. Where is it true or you?

 

What ministry has God called you to?

 

Where has he called you to disciple a younger Christian, or be in a relationship of mutual accountability and discipleship with a Christian in a similar place to where you are? Where has he called you to a regular work of spiritual service? Where has he called you to lead? Or where has he called you to labor in the background? Where has he called you to share Christ with a non-Christian, whether a co-worker or a neighbor or a friend or a family member? Where has Christ turned to you and said “How will you serve this person?” – “Where are we to buy bread, so that they may eat?”

 

And when he’s done that, how have you responded? Have you trusted in your own powers, either inflating your abilities or diminishing the need before you? Have you thrown up your hands in despair like Philip? Or have you taken stock of what gifts you have been given, seen how far they fall short of the need, and then offered your five barley loaves and two small fish to Christ, trusting that by his power, he can fill the spiritual need before you?

 

That is what you are called to do in the church and in the world. It is also what you are called to do in your family.

 

The Lord has called you to minister to your family. He’s called you to minister to your wife or your husband, to your children, or to your elderly parents, or to your siblings. What does that look like in your life? Who is it especially for you?

 

And once you have in mind who it is, let me ask: How’s it going? Maybe it’s been going well. Or maybe you feel like Philip. Maybe you look at what you are called to do, and you want to say “Lord, eight months of effort would not even be enough for me to do what you are asking of me for this person today.” And when you feel that way, the question is not whether you are enough or where you can get your hands on two hundred denarii. The question is: like Andrew, will you realistically assess the size of the need, realistically assess your own resources, and then turn to Christ and offer him your five barley loaves and two small fish, trusting that he, by his power, will use them to fill the spiritual need before you – the need that you could never fill on your own?

 

We have focused on how this applies to us as individuals. But it also applies to us as a community.

 

Because the events in our text play out in a corporate way – they play out in community.

 

Philip is asked the question, but he doesn’t find the right answer on his own. Andrew gets closer to the right answer, but he’s not actually the one who brings the loaves and the fish – that’s the boy, who is only brought into the equation by Andrew. And it takes all the disciples to organize the crowd and ultimately distribute the food from the hands of Jesus.

 

All that is to say that we have focused so far on our calling to walk in the pattern of this text individually, but the individual application is in some ways really secondary. The primary picture in our text is of a community living out this reality. The primary picture is of the Church.

 

It is one individual whom Jesus prompts to fill the need, another who provides the initial gift that Jesus will use, a third who connects the one with the initial gift to Jesus, and then ten more to help deliver what Jesus provides to everyone there.

 

We are not usually called to be all the characters at once. God in his mercy has made us a part of the Church. God in his mercy has made us each one member of the Body of Christ, where we build one another up and bear one another’s burdens.

 

That tells you a few things.

 

First, that tells you that you have an obligation to the Church – to the Body of Christ. If you are not involved, if you are not finding your place to serve, then one of the crucial players in meeting a need might be missing here. If the boy or Andrew ditched the community on the day in question, then our text doesn’t work out in quite the same way, does it? The Church needs all of its members. Christ is working through all his members to turn barley loaves fit for a few into a feast sufficient for many. Where is your place in that? Where do you fit into the ministry of the Church?

 

Second, this tells you that you need the Church. You need your brothers and sisters in Christ. Philip needed Andrew on that day. Andrew needed that boy. The other ten disciples all needed one another. I wonder if when Jesus told them to organize the crowd for a meal … even though he had not yet told them how he was going to provide such a meal … I wonder if some of the disciples hesitated. I wonder if some started to sort of back away until they saw another disciple begin to obey. I wonder how the more sturdy faith of some held up and supported the more feeble faith of others. Christ used a body of believers to feed the crowd … and as much as they all depended on Christ for the provision, God also provided them with one another to encourage their weak faith. You need the Church.

 

Third and finally, this text should give you encouragement when it comes to the hope of the Church in a hostile world. There are so many assessments, so many articles, so many books, that look at the challenges presented by our secular age, and they look at the meager resources of the Church, and they make dire predictions and fearful proclamations about the future of the Church in our culture.

 

Now, many of these books are good. And many of these books are important. And many can help the Church prepare for the challenges ahead.

 

But when such books and when such articles and when such “experts” look at the challenges surrounding the Church, and they look at the Church’s shallow resources, and they then exclaim some version of “Two hundred denarii would not be enough to even begin to meet these challenges!” then we need to remember that we serve a God who turns five barley loaves and two small fish into a feast that feeds thousands – we serve a God who is able to take our meager resources and transform them into what is needed – we serve a God who is able to provide for his people, and our hope is not in the resources in our pockets – our hope is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

 

We serve a God who gives us more than we can handle. And when he does, he calls on us to take our meager resources – meager resources which themselves are a gift – and offer them up to him, that he might use them to do what we never could do on our own.

 

And if we know Christ … and if we know the gospel … then this should not surprise us.

 

For this is the story of our entire spiritual lives.

 

We have each, every believing Christian here, come to where we are not by amassing great resources on our own … but by taking our meager faith – meager faith that was itself a gift we received – by taking our meager faith, and offering it to Christ, and then seeing him transform that meager faith into everlasting life – into adoption as children of God … into sanctification and growth in grace … into the hope of glory. That is the heart of our experience of the gospel. Why should we expect it to be any different as we do the various works of ministry that God has called us to in this world?

 

It has been the pattern of the beginning of our spiritual lives …. it is the pattern of our spiritual lives today … and it will also be the pattern of the consummation of our spiritual lives.

 

Because in the end, we will each stand before the Lord on the last day. And the question will not be whether we were the smartest or the strongest or the most gifted. It won’t be how many denarii we had stored up in our pockets when the challenges of life came our way. The question the Lord will consider – the framework he will evaluate our lives by – will be, when those challenges came our way, did we offer up to him whatever we had – did we lift up to him our five barley loaves and two small fish – in the hope and expectation not that we by our power could make something of it, but in the hope and expectation that he by his power could make something of it?

 

And for those who offered their loaves and fish, trusting not in themselves, but in the Lord who fed five thousand – they are the ones who will hear their Lord say to them “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.” [Matthew 25:23]

 

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

This sermon draws on material from:

Augustine. Homilies on the Gospel of John 1-40. Translated by Edmund Hill. Edited by Allan D. Fitzgerald. The Works of Saint Augustine. Hyde Park, NY: New City Press, 2009.

Brown, Raymond E. The Gospel According to John. vol.1. Anchor. New York, NY: Doubleday, 1966.

Calvin, John. Commentary on the Gospel According to John. Vol. 1. Translated by William Pringle. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1847 (2005 Reprint).

Carson, D.A. The Gospel According to John. PNTC. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1991.

Leithart, Peter J. The Four: A Survey of the Gospels. Moscow, ID: Canon Press, 2010.

Morris, Leon. The Gospel According to John. NICNT. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1971.

Wright, N.T. John for Everyone: Part 1. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004.