John 6:38 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 6:38, NIV: "For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me."

John 6:38, ESV: "For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me."

John 6:38, KJV: "For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me."

John 6:38, NASB: "For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me."

John 6:38, NLT: "For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will."

John 6:38, CSB: "For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me."

What does John 6:38 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The people are struggling to understand Jesus' teachings. He has recently attempted to explain that His miracles are meant to point towards a greater truth. Rather than focus on material things, the people ought to be emphasizing eternal, heavenly things. In the same way, the bread provided by Jesus, like the manna provided by Moses, is only meant to be a sign. That sign should point people towards the "Bread of Life," which is a person sent by God (John 6:27–33), so that all who believe in Him will have eternal life (John 6:40).

Once again, Jesus claims that He has "come down from heaven" (John 6:33). From the perspective of Jesus' critics, this is blasphemy, and will be part of their criticisms of Him during His arrest. Not only is this audacious, it would be absolutely immoral for a normal man to claim. This, however, is the primary theme of the gospel of John: that Jesus Christ is, in fact, God incarnate (John 20:31).

In this verse, Jesus also makes an additional reference to His obedience to God the Father. As part of the Trinity, Jesus Christ is God the Son. So, His will and the will of the Father are always in alignment. And yet, as a fully human man, Christ also experienced the temptations and emotions of a physical person (Hebrews 4:15). Part of His sinless example to us is His willingness to obey God, no matter the consequences (Mark 14:36), and no matter the personal cost (Philippians 2:8). In the context of these discussion, Jesus is also pointing out that the ministry He has been given comes from God, and ought to be recognized as such.