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THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JOHN - Chapter 13 - Verse 33

Verse 33. Little children. An expression of great tenderness, denoting his deep interest in their welfare. As he was about to leave them, he endeavours to mitigate their grief by the most tender expressions of attachment, showing that he felt for them the deep interest in their welfare which a parent feels for his children. The word children is often given to Christians as implying—

1st. That God is their Father, and that they sustain toward him that endearing relation, Ro 8:14,15.

2nd. As denoting their need of teaching and guidance, as children need the aid and counsel of a father. See the corresponding term babes used in 1 Co 3:1; 1 Pe 2:2

3rd. It is used, as it is here, as an expression of tenderness and affection. See Ga 4:19; 1 Jo 2:1,12,28; 3:7,18; 4:4; 5:21.


Yet a little while I am with you. He did not conceal the fact that he was soon to leave them. There is something exceedingly tender in this address. It shows that he loved them to the end; that as their friend and guide, as a man, he felt deeply at the thoughts of parting from them, and leaving them to a cold and unfeeling world. A parting scene at death is always one of tenderness; and it is well when, like this, there is the presence of the Saviour to break the agony of the parting pang, and to console us with the words of his grace.

As I said unto the Jews. See Joh 7:34.

So now I say to you. That is, they could not follow him then, Joh 13:36; 14:2. He was about to die and return to God, and for a time they must be willing to be separated from him. But he consoled them (Joh 13:36) with the assurance that the separation would be only temporary, and that they should afterward follow him.

{w} "as I said unto the Jews" Joh 7:34; 8:21

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