John 3:31 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 3:31, NIV: "The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all."

John 3:31, ESV: "He who comes from above is above all. He who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks in an earthly way. He who comes from heaven is above all."

John 3:31, KJV: "He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all."

John 3:31, NASB: "'He who comes from above is above all; the one who is only from the earth is of the earth and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all."

John 3:31, NLT: "'He has come from above and is greater than anyone else. We are of the earth, and we speak of earthly things, but he has come from heaven and is greater than anyone else."

John 3:31, CSB: "The one who comes from above is above all. The one who is from the earth is earthly and speaks in earthly terms. The one who comes from heaven is above all."

What does John 3:31 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus' words and teachings are far superior to any others. In his conversation with Nicodemus, Jesus indicates that He is the only One who has come from heaven (John 3:13). Rejecting what Christ says about spiritual things means there is nowhere else to turn. Worse, it means rejecting God Himself (John 5:29). All other teachers, and all other claims, are based on fallible, human, earthly knowledge. This is another place where the Bible explains that Jesus is unique: there are no other ways to God, but Him.

Other verses in this chapter will make similar claims. Verses 16–18 explain Jesus' ministry, while reminding us that those who do not believe are condemned. Verse 36 will emphasize the same idea: rejecting Jesus means rejecting God. There is no other option. Unfortunately, as verse 32 will show, not everyone is interested in that message. In fact, most people are opposed to it.