Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible, by John Wesley, [1754-65], at sacred-texts.com
joh 18:1A garden - Probably belonging to one of his friends. He might retire to this private place, not only for the advantage of secret devotion, but also that the people might not be alarmed at his apprehension, nor attempt, in the first sallies of their zeal, to rescue him in a tumultuous manner. Kedron was (as the name signifies) a dark shady valley, on the east side of Jerusalem, between the city and the mount of Olives, through which a little brook ran, which took its name from it. It was this brook, which David, a type of Christ, went over with the people, weeping in his flight from Absalom. Mat 26:30; Mar 14:26; Luk 22:39.
joh 18:2Mar 14:43; Luk 22:47.
joh 18:3A troop of soldiers - A cohort of Roman foot.
joh 18:6As soon as he said, I am he, they went backward and fell to the ground - How amazing is it, that they should renew the assault, after so sensible an experience both of his power and mercy! But probably the priests among them might persuade themselves and their attendants, that this also was done by Beelzebub; and that it was through the providence of God, not the indulgence of Jesus, that they received no farther damage.
joh 18:8If ye seek me, let these (my disciples) go - It was an eminent instance of his power over the spirits of men, that they so far obeyed this word, as not to seize even Peter, when he had cut off the ear of Malchus.
joh 18:9Joh 17:12.
joh 18:10Then Simon Peter - No other evangelist names him. Nor could they safely. But St. John, writing after his death, might do it without any such inconvenience.
joh 18:13Annas had been high priest before his son - in - law Caiaphas. And though he had for some time resigned that office, yet they paid so much regard to his age and experience, that they brought Christ to Annas first. But we do not read of any thing remarkable which passed at the house of Annas; for, which reason, his being carried thither is omitted by the other evangelists. Mat 26:57; Mar 14:53; Luk 22:54.
joh 18:17Art thou also - As well as the others, one of this man's disciples - She does not appear to have asked with any design to hurt him.
joh 18:20I spake openly - As to the manner: continually - As to the time: in the synagogue and temple - As to the place. In secret have I said nothing - No point of doctrine which I have not taught in public.
joh 18:21Why askest thou me - Whom thou wilt not believe?
joh 18:22Answerest thou the high priest so? - With so little reverence?
joh 18:24Now Annas had sent him to Caiaphas - As is implied Joh 18:13. Bound - Being still bound, Joh 18:12.
joh 18:28They went not into the palace themselves, lest they should be defiled - By going into a house which was not purged from leaven, Deu 16:4. Mat 27:2; Mar 15:1; Luk 23:1.
joh 18:31It is not lawful for us to put any man to death - The power of inflicting capital punishment had been taken from them that very year. So the sceptre was departed from Judah, and transferred to the Romans.
joh 18:32Signifying what death he should die - For crucifixion was not a Jewish, but a Roman punishment. So that had he not been condemned by the Roman governor, he could not have been crucified. Joh 3:14.
joh 18:36My kingdom is not of this world - Is not an external, but a spiritual kingdom; that I might not be delivered to the Jews - Which Pilate had already attempted to do, Joh 18:31, and afterward actually did, Joh 19:16.
joh 18:37Thou sayest - The truth. To this end was I born - Speaking of his human origin: his Divine was above Pilate's comprehension. Yet it is intimated in the following words, I came into the world, that I might witness to the truth - Which was both declared to the Jews, and in the process of his passion to the princes of the Gentiles also. Every one that is of the truth - That is, a lover of it, heareth my voice - A universal maxim. Every sincere lover of truth will hear him, so as to understand and practise what he saith.
joh 18:38What is truth? - Said Pilate, a courtier; perhaps meaning what signifies truth? Is that a thing worth hazarding your life for? So he left him presently, to plead with the Jews for him, looking upon him as an innocent but weak man.