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John 14:24 "Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me". ESV

John 14:10 "Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works". ESV

Why is rhemata the right word for "words" in John 14:10, but logous the right word for "words" in John 14:24?

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Good question. Both verses talk about Jesus speaking from the Father, yet one verse uses rhema and the other uses logos. In terms of context, both verses are found in the same chapter.

Literal Standard Version John 14:10b

The sayings [4487. rhéma] that I speak to you, I do not speak from Myself, and the Father who is abiding in Me does the works Himself;

Thayer's Greek Lexicon

  1. properly, that which is or has been uttered by the living voice, thing spoken, word
    a. any sound produced by the voice and having a definite meaning:

rhema/word emphasizes the physical aspect of the word.

Literal Standard Version John 14:24

he who is not loving Me does not keep My words [3056. logos]; and the word [3056. logos] that you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me.

Thayer's Greek Lexicon

  1. a word, yet not in the grammatical sense, but language, vox, i. e. a word which, uttered by the living voice, embodies a conception or idea;

logos/word emphasizes the concept/notion/idea conveyed by the word.

The earlier verse emphasizes the audio aspect of the words of Jesus. It is linked to the verb to speak. Jesus speaks the words.

The later verse emphasizes the meanings conveyed by the words of Jesus. It is linked to the verb to keep: Understand his words. Keep his words and not just listening to them.

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Logos is the word. The word you hear and read with your natural [physical] eyes/ears. Rhema is the word you hear then ‘see’ with your spiritual ears/eyes. Logos is for all. As it is for ‘the flesh’. It can be naturally understood, and used for reasoning. Rhema won’t make any sense to the natural mind.

1 COR 2:13 And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. 14 The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

Now let’s examine the verses you asked about ...

John 14:10 ”Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works"

Here he is talking ‘spiritually’. A Father dwelling ‘in’ him ... is speaking? - doesn’t make sense. [naturally], Because those ‘words’ [rhema] are spoken for spiritual ears. God is speaking (and he isn’t there in person)

Where as ...

John 14:24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me"

The word [Logos] which you hear [with your natural ears]. Here Jesus is speaking (and he is there physically).

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  • @ Dave You say "Logos is the written word", how did you get to this? – C. Stroud Apr 1 at 20:43
  • @C. Stroud ‪I did write that, but should not have. Logos is the word. But because we [only] have that word in written form (Bible) I ‘added’ written. ‬ – Dave Apr 1 at 21:20
  • You say "Logos is for all". But the verse you quote doesn't say it is for all. 1 Cor 2:13 "to those who are spiritual" is not "all". -1 – C. Stroud Apr 3 at 8:34
  • @C. Stroud Everyone (all) can hear the word. (Logos). But, does the word change everyones heart? Rhema changes your heart (spirit). Jesus often lamented that his audience heard the word, but we’re deaf to it. They heard with their natural ears, but not with their spiritual ears. I accept that you don’t see it my way. That’s fine. And, I note there is an acceptable answer. Although we often see things differently - Tony provides excellent answers, is very knowledgeable, and are always worth considering. – Dave Apr 3 at 18:41

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