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John 16:12-13 - I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear

NIV I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
KJV I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
NASB I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.
John 16:12-13


There were still many other things the Lord had to tell the disciples, but they could not take them in. This is an important principle of teaching. There must be a certain progress in learning before advanced truths can be received. The Lord never overwhelmed His disciples with teaching. He gave it to them "line upon line, precept upon precept." The work which the Lord began was to be continued by the Spirit of truth. He would guide them into all truth.

MacDonald, W., & Farstad, A. (1997, c1995). Believer's Bible Commentary : Old and New Testaments (Jn 16:12). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.


For the Hebrews, truth was basically moral and relational, not simply intellectual. For the Greeks, the emphasis of truth was intellectual rather than a matter of trust or reliance. The New Testament usage draws on both understandings. The word is found mainly in Paul's writings and in John's Gospel and letters. John builds on the understanding that God is true or real (John 3:33; 7:28). Christ reveals God and thus reveals truth (John 8:26, 40; 18:37). Christ is full of grace and truth (John 1:14, 17), He is "the truth" (John 14:6; read John 1:9; 15:1), and He sends the Spirit of truth (John 15:26).

Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson's new illustrated Bible commentary. Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

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