What does John 6:37 mean?
ESV: All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
NIV: All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.
NASB: Everything that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I certainly will not cast out.
CSB: Everyone the Father gives me will come to me, and the one who comes to me I will never cast out.
NLT: However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them.
KJV: All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
NKJV: All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.
Verse Commentary:
The crowds who followed Jesus as a result of His healing miracles (John 6:2) saw Him perform a supernatural act the prior day (John 6:9–14). In this passage, Jesus has been trying to explain that His ministry is inherently spiritual, not material. The people are fixated on the idea of material things and with the concept of working for their own salvation. Instead, Jesus points to the one and only means of salvation: belief in the One whom God has sent into the world. Jesus has already pointed to Himself, specifically as this "Bread of Life" (John 6:35), which the people won't recognize even though they've seen more than enough evidence.

This verse continues to explain the idea of eternal life and touches on at least two doctrines which are controversial within Christianity. The first is that of predestination, implied by Jesus' use of the phrase "all that the Father gives me will come to me." This suggests that those who accept Jesus' teaching, that He is the Bread of Life, meaning those who obtain eternal life, are identical to those who are "given" to Him by God the Father. Logically, this implies that those who do not come to Christ have not been "given" to Him.

Various theories exist on what, exactly, this means. Some interpret this as a hardline determination by God. Others see this as a reference to God's sovereign choice in the issue of salvation; this might imply that God works to bring people to saving faith, but not necessarily that He withholds it from those who are not saved. No matter what view one takes, this verse creates a border for interpretation. God's sovereign involvement in souls coming to Christ for salvation is beyond debate. Those who are saved are those whom the Father "has given" to Christ, whatever that is interpreted to mean.

The second doctrine involved in this verse is that of eternal security. This is the idea that those who are truly saved in Christ can never lose that salvation. Compared to the nuances of predestination, the Bible is significantly more specific on this point. This particular verse, technically speaking, speaks only to Christ's unconditional acceptance of anyone who "comes to [Him]." In other words, in and of themselves, these words only indicate that those who place their faith in Christ (John 6:35) will unquestionably be saved.

However, later in this same discourse, Jesus will speak of these same people as those who will, unfailingly, be raised "on the last day" (John 6:40; 44; 54). This makes John 6:37 a useful support for the doctrine of eternal security, but only in the context of the verses which follow.
Verse Context:
John 6:22–40 describes the initial aftermath of Jesus' feeding of thousands the previous day. The crowd's actual desire is for another supernatural spectacle and more free food. In this passage, Christ begins to explain the true meaning behind His miracle and His ministry. This includes the first of seven ''I AM'' statements in the gospel of John—moments where Jesus declares His own divinity. Jesus clarifies that physical things such as bread are meant to be symbols of a spiritual truth. In the following segment, the crowd will stop seeking and start complaining.
Chapter Summary:
In chapter 6, Jesus feeds thousands of people who had been following Him. He does this by miraculously dividing the contents of a small lunch, leaving more left over than He had to begin with. At first, the crowd is amazed and they enthusiastically praise Jesus. After sending the disciples across the Sea of Galilee, and rescuing them from a storm by walking on the water, Jesus once again addresses the crowd. This time, He emphasizes the spiritual lesson behind His prior miracle. In response, most of those who had been praising Jesus turn away from Him in disappointment.
Chapter Context:
John chapter 6 occurs some months after the events of chapter 5, bringing the narrative to about one year prior to Jesus' crucifixion. As with the rest of the Gospel of John, the purpose is not to repeat information from the other three Gospels, but to focus on Jesus' status as God incarnate. This chapter continues to expand the list of Jesus' miraculous signs and the witnesses to His divine nature. Here, Jesus also gives the first of seven ''I AM'' statements found in this Gospel. Chapter 7 will once again skip ahead to a major public step in Jesus' path to the cross.
Book Summary:
The disciple John wrote the gospel of John decades after the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke were written. The author assumes that a reader is already familiar with the content of these other works. So, John presents a different perspective, with a greater emphasis on meaning. John uses seven miracles—which he calls "signs"— to prove that Jesus is, in fact, God incarnate. Some of the most well-known verses in the Bible are found here. None is more famous than the one-sentence summary of the gospel found in John 3:16.
Accessed 6/14/2024 9:56:41 PM
© Copyright 2002-2024 Got Questions Ministries. All rights reserved.
Text from ESV, NIV, NASB, CSB, NLT, KJV, NKJV © Copyright respective owners, used by permission.