John 18

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John 18
P52 recto.jpg
John 18:31-33 on John Rylands Library Papyrus P52 (recto), written ca. AD 125.
Book Gospel of John
Bible part New Testament
Order in the Bible part 4
Category Gospel

John 18 is the eighteenth chapter of the Gospel of John in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. It records the events on the day of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, starting with His arrest.[1] The book containing this chapter is anonymous, but early Christian tradition uniformly affirmed that John composed this Gospel.[2]



Events recorded in this chapter took place in Jerusalem.


The New King James Version organises this chapter as follows:

Jesus' betrayal and arrest in Gethsemane[edit]

The opening of chapter 18 is connected directly with the final words of chapter 14:

Arise, let us go from here (John 14:31).

Verse 1[edit]

John 18:1 begins:

When Jesus had spoken these words, He went out with His disciples over the Brook (or winter stream) Kidron, where there was a garden, which He and His disciples entered.
And Judas, who betrayed Him, also knew the place; for Jesus often met there with His disciples. (John 18:1-8, New King James Version).

Some translations instead open with "When He had finished praying" or similar words.[3]

Matthew 26:36 and Mark 14:32 name the garden as "Gethsemane" but the garden is unnamed here.

Judas is now called "Judas the betrayer" or "Judas, who is betraying" (Greek: ιουδας ο παραδιδους, ioudas ho paradidous) (John 18:2 and again in verse 5).[4] He comes to this familiar place with troops, a captain and officers and servants of the chief priests and the Pharisees, carrying torches and lanterns and weapons (verse 6, cf. verse 12). Anglican bishop Charles Ellicott surmises that Gethsemane might have been belonged to "a friend or disciple" of Jesus.[5] The New American Standard Bible notes that the troops were the Roman cohort (Greek: σπεῖρα, speira in John 18:3 is the technical word for the Roman cohort) [6] whereas Richard Francis Weymouth identified them as a detachment of the Temple police.[7] This was the garrison band from Fort Antonia, at the north-east corner of the Temple. Peter also came with a weapon (verses 10-11):

Verse 10[edit]

Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.[8]

In Pilate's Court[edit]

Verse 31[edit]

Then Pilate said to them, “You take Him and judge Him according to your law.”
Therefore the Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death,” (NKJV)[9]

Verse 37[edit]

Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are You a king then?”
Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king.
For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world,
that I should bear witness to the truth.
Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” (NKJV)[10]

Cross reference: Matthew 27:11; Mark 15:2; Luke 23:3

What is truth?[edit]

Verse 38[edit]

Main article: John 18:38
Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?”
And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews,
and said to them, “I find no fault in Him at all.” (NKJV)[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Halley, Henry H. Halley's Bible Handbook: an abbreviated Bible commentary. 23rd edition. Zondervan Publishing House. 1962.
  2. ^ Holman Illustrated Bible Handbook. Holman Bible Publishers, Nashville, Tennessee. 2012.
  3. ^ e.g. New International Version, International Children's Bible and Weymouth New Testament
  4. ^ Vincent's Word Studies on John 18, accessed 12 July 2016
  5. ^ Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers on John 18, accessed 16 July 2016
  6. ^ Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers on John 18, accessed 16 July 2016
  7. ^ Weymouth New Testament, John 18:3
  8. ^ John 18:10
  9. ^ John 18:31
  10. ^ John 18:37
  11. ^ John 18:38

External links[edit]

Preceded by
John 17
Chapters of the Bible
Gospel of John
Succeeded by
John 19