John 7:15

15 The Jews there were amazed and asked, “How did this man get such learning without having been taught?”

John 7:15 in Other Translations

King James Version (KJV)
15 And the Jews marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?
English Standard Version (ESV)
15 The Jews therefore marveled, saying, "How is it that this man has learning, when he has never studied?"
New Living Translation (NLT)
15 The people were surprised when they heard him. “How does he know so much when he hasn’t been trained?” they asked.
The Message Bible (MSG)
15 The Jews were impressed, but puzzled: "How does he know so much without being schooled?"
American Standard Version (ASV)
15 The Jews therefore marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?
GOD'S WORD Translation (GW)
15 The Jews were surprised and asked, "How can this man be so educated when he hasn't gone to school?"
Holman Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
15 Then the Jews were amazed and said, "How does He know the Scriptures, since He hasn't been trained?"
New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
15 The Jews were amazed. They asked, "How did this man learn so much without studying?"

John 7:15 Meaning and Commentary

John 7:15

And the Jews marvelled
Both at the matter, and manner of his doctrine; it was such, as never man spake; his words were so gracious, and there were such truth and evidence in them, and they were delivered with such power and authority, that they were astonished at them:

saying, how knoweth this man letters?
or "the Scriptures", as the Arabic and Persic versions render it; which are called "holy letters", ( 2 Timothy 3:15 ) ; according to which, the sense is, that they were surprised at his knowledge of the Scriptures, that he should be conversant with them, and be able to interpret them, and give the sense and meaning of them, in so full and clear a manner, as he did: or else the sense is, how came this man to be such a learned man? whence has he this wisdom, and all this learning which he shows? as in ( Matthew 13:54 ) . So a learned man is in ( Isaiah 29:11 ) , said to be one that (rpoh edwy) , (epistamenov grammata) , "knows letters", as the Septuagint there translate the Hebrew text; but how Christ should know them, or be a learned man,

having never learned,
was surprising to them: that is, he had not had a liberal education, but was brought up to a trade; he was not trained up at the feet of any of their Rabbins, in any of their universities, or schools of learning; and in which they were certainly right. Modern Jews pretend to say he had a master, whom they sometimes call Elchanan F15, but most commonly they make him to be R. Joshua ben Perachiah F16: with whom they say, he fled into Alexandria in Egypt, for fear of Jannai the king: and one of their writers F17, on this account, charges the evangelist with a falsehood: but who are we to believe, the Jews who lived at the same time with Jesus, and knew his education and manner of life, or those that have lived ages since?


F15 Toldos Jesu, p. 5.
F16 Juchasin, fol. 159. 1. Ganz Tzemach David, par. 1, fol. 21. 1. & 24.
F17 R. Isaac Chizzuk Emuna, par. 2. c. 46. p. 435.

John 7:15 In-Context

13 But no one would say anything publicly about him for fear of the leaders.
14 Not until halfway through the festival did Jesus go up to the temple courts and begin to teach.
15 The Jews there were amazed and asked, “How did this man get such learning without having been taught?”
16 Jesus answered, “My teaching is not my own. It comes from the one who sent me.
17 Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.

Cross References 3

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