What does John 8:26 mean?
ESV: I have much to say about you and much to judge, but he who sent me is true, and I declare to the world what I have heard from him.”
NIV: I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is trustworthy, and what I have heard from him I tell the world.'
NASB: I have many things to say and to judge regarding you, but He who sent Me is true; and the things which I heard from Him, these I say to the world.'
CSB: "I have many things to say and to judge about you, but the one who sent me is true, and what I have heard from him--these things I tell the world."
NLT: I have much to say about you and much to condemn, but I won’t. For I say only what I have heard from the one who sent me, and he is completely truthful.'
KJV: I have many things to say and to judge of you: but he that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him.
Verse Commentary:
Here again, Jesus claims that the message He brings is that of God the Father. This echoes statements He has made earlier in His ministry (John 6:38–40), as well as in this same conversation (John 7:16). In the prior verse, Jesus critics delivered a question about His identity. More than likely, this was meant in a critical, rebuking way: "who do you think you are?" All the same, Jesus has been consistent about His testimony. He has pointed to the Scriptures (John 5:39–40), miracles (John 5:36), the witness of others (John 5:32–33), and His own unique knowledge (John 8:14–16). All of these give Him the right to claim to be the light of the world (John 8:12), and to point out that those who reject Him will suffer spiritual death for their sins (John 8:21). In short, Jesus is the Promised One, and God incarnate.

All of this, sadly, is lost on the men attacking Jesus. As the next verse indicates, they simply do not understand. At the same time, Scripture makes it clear that a person's intent comes before their ability to understand. The evidence is there, and the truth is there, but those who do not want to understand cannot understand (John 7:17). Jesus is not going to waste additional time giving proofs or evidence to those who have no interest whatsoever in truth (Matthew 7:6).
Verse Context:
John 8:12–30 includes the second of Jesus' seven ''I AM'' statements, as recorded in the gospel of John. Jesus' reference to light was probably playing off of a ritual performed during the Feast of Booths, where lamps would be lit using wicks made from the robes of priests. This continues the dialogue of chapter 7, picking up where John 7:52 left off. The exchange between Jesus and the Pharisees will escalate, in part showing that Jesus was not afraid to directly castigate those who misled the people.
Chapter Summary:
John chapter 8 includes the story of the adulterous woman, a well-known but controversial passage. Most scholars believe this story is authentic, but not originally found in this exact spot in Scripture. This chapter continues Jesus' preaching during the Feast of Booths, where He once again comes into conflict with local religious leaders. Here, Christ will make His second ''I AM'' statement, using the analogy of light, which is a common theme in Hebrew theology. This conversation will become more and more heated. Eventually, Jesus' opponents are enraged enough to attempt killing Him right then and there.
Chapter Context:
Jesus is attending the Feast of Booths in Jerusalem, and has once again come into conflict with the local religious authorities. In the previous chapter, Jesus referred to Himself as a source of living water, playing off of the festivals' ritual pouring of water in the temple. In this chapter, Jesus will use the imagery of lights, also related to festival traditions. This chapter demonstrates Jesus' willingness to be direct, even aggressive, with His critics. The next few chapters will complete Jesus' public ministry, as He prepares for His impending death.
Book Summary:
The gospel of John was written by the disciple John, decades later than the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. 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”—in order to prove that Jesus is, in fact, God incarnate. Some of the most well-known verses in all of the Bible are found here. None is more famous than the one-sentence summary of the gospel found in John 3:16.
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