John 15:15 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 15:15, NIV: "I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you."

John 15:15, ESV: "No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you."

John 15:15, KJV: "Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you."

John 15:15, NASB: "No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, because all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you."

John 15:15, NLT: "I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn't confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me."

John 15:15, CSB: "I do not call you servants anymore, because a servant doesn't know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have heard from my Father."

What does John 15:15 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Abraham is referred to in Scripture as a "friend of God" (James 2:23). Here, Jesus calls the disciples—and by extension, those believers who "abide" in Him (John 15:9–10)—His "friends," as proven by communication. God openly spoke with Abraham (Genesis 18:17), and Jesus openly speaks with us through His Word (John 15:7). That Christ instructs and informs us, beyond brute commands, as well as offering His life for our sake (John 15:13) are powerful proofs that He sees us as His "friends."

This does not erase the idea that believers are "servants" of Christ (Romans 1:1). Jesus has used (John 13:16) and will continue to use (John 15:20) such terminology in reference to His followers. Rather, Jesus is indicating that His intended relationship with believers involves communication and support, rather than simple dictatorship. This also supports the "vine and branches" analogy Jesus used earlier in this passage (John 15:1–8). As God's love and knowledge flow to Christ, Christ passes them down to us, as a vine passes life along to branches. We, in turn, are meant to pass the Word, and love, to other people (Matthew 28:19; John 13:34–35; 14:15).