John 13:23 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New TestamentObserve here, 1. The character given of St. John the beloved disciple: he leaned on Christ's bosom; that is, he had most intimate converse with Christ, one whom Christ treated with greater freedom and familiarity than the rest, and one that knew more of his heart than most of his disciples. We commonly call a very near friend a bosom friend.
Learn, That although Christ had an endeared love for all his disciples and followers, yet there were degrees in Christ's own love, and he had a familiarity with some disciples beyond others, whilst he was here upon earth, even as now in heaven, though his heart be towards all his children here on earth, yet he is pleased to let out more kind manifestations of himself, and more sensible evidences of his love towards some than towards others. John was the disciple that lay in Jesus's bosom.
Observe, 2. The way which our Saviour took to discover Judas to the rest of his disciples, not by naming him, but by giving him a sop; partly because he would not give Judas any provocation by mentioning his name, and partly because the sign of eating the sop was most agreeable to the prophetical prediction, My own familiar friend, who did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me Psa 41:9.
Observe, 3. The time when Judas received the sop, and the consequence that followed upon his receiving of it; it was at that time when he had, with an unbelieving heart, and an unthankful spirit, been eating the passover, which was a type of Christ. Now Satan enters into him; that is, takes fuller possession of him, and he gives himself up more freely and fully to the devil's conduct and suggestion. Satan gets possession of wicked men gradually and by degrees; not all at once; the only way to be safe is to resist the beginnings of sin; for, when Satan once gets footing, it is hard to prevent a more full possession.
Observe, 4. The place where Judas now was, namely, at Bethany, some miles form Jerusalem, and it was now night; yet so intent he was upon the devil's work, that away he trudges to Jerusalem, and at that time of night repairs to the high priests, and sells his Saviour into their hands. O what a warmth and zeal was here in the devil's cause! Men given over by God, and possessed by Satan, are so restless and unwearied in sin, that neither by day nor by night can they cease from the contrivance and execution of it.
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Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament
William Burkitt (1650 - 1703) was a Church of England clergyman, bible expositor, and devotional writer.
Volume 1: Matthew - John, was published in 1700.
Volume 2: Acts - Revelation was published 1703.