Greek Study John 8:31-36
v 31 Ιουδαιουσ - to the Jews (ablative plural) In NT usage the term Ιουδαιοι may refer to the entire Jewish people, to the residents of Jerusalem and surrounding territory (i.e., “Judeans”) or the authorities in Jerusalem, or merely those who were hostile to Jesus. Here the phrase refers to the Jewish people in Jerusalem who had been listening to Jesus’ teaching in the temple and had believed his claim to be the Messiah, hence, “those Judeans who had believed him.”
μεινητε εν τω λογω − if you continue in my word a conditional clause
v 32 και η αληθεια ελευθερωσει υμασ- the truth will release you, (aorist future indicative – present condition with future consequence) the translation “set you free” or “release you” (unlike the more traditional “make you free”) conveys more the idea that the hearers were currently in a state of slavery from which they needed to be freed. The statement the truth will set you free is often taken as referring to truth in the philosophical (or absolute) sense, or in the intellectual sense, or even (as the Jews apparently took it) in the political sense. But in the context of John (particularly in light of the prologue) this must refer to truth about the person and work of Jesus. αληθεια is a word from 2 Greek words; “λεθοσ” (to forget) and α (not) – hence “truth” is “not to forget”.
v 33 σπερμα lit. - we are the seed (an idiom)
v 34 πασ ο ποιων τηναμαπτιαν - who commits sin - could simply be translated, “everyone who sins,” but the Greek is emphatic, using the participle ποιων with πασ, a typical Johannine construct. Here continuous action is intended. The one whose lifestyle is characterized by continuous sin is a slave to sin (the same idiom used for addiction in the ancient world). A sin junky is not free but enslaved. To break free requires outside intervention. The particular sin of the Ιουδαιουσ, repeatedly emphasized in the Fourth Gospel, is the sin of habitual unbelief. The present tense in this instance looks at the continual refusal of the Jewish leaders to acknowledge who Jesus is in spite of the evidence.
v 35 μενει εν τη οικια - remain in the household. The Greek work οικια can denote the family (relatives by descent and marriage) as well as slaves and servants living in the same house (think “extended family”).
ο υιοσ μενει εισ τον αιωνα “the son remains forever” Jesus’ point is that while a slave may be part of a household, the slave is not guaranteed a permanent place, while a son will have a guaranteed place in the house.
v 36 υιοσ − son - the question is whether this is to be understood as a direct reference to Jesus or as an indirect reference to the illustration begun in the previous verse – in which case the ‘son” would be the chosen people.