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John 6:66

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Many of his disciples went back - They no longer associated with him, nor professed to acknowledge him as the Messiah. None of these were of the twelve. Christ had many others who generally attended his ministry, and acknowledged him for the Messiah.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Many of his disciples - Many who had followed him professedly as his disciples and as desirous of learning of him. See the notes at John 6:60.

Went back - Turned away from him and left him. From this we may learn,

1.Not to wonder at the apostasy of many who profess to be followers of Christ. Many are induced to become his professed followers by the prospect of some temporal benefit, or under some public excitement, as these were; and when that temporal benefit is not obtained, or that excitement is over, they fall away.

2.Many may be expected to be offended by the doctrines of the gospel. Having no spirituality of mind, and really understanding nothing of the gospel, they may be expected to take offence and turn back. The best way to understand the doctrines of the Bible is to be a sincere Christian, and aim to do the will of God, John 7:17.

3.We should examine ourselves. We should honestly inquire whether we have been led to make a profession of religion by the hope of any temporal advantage, by any selfish principle, or by mere excited animal feeling. If we have it will profit us nothing, and we shall either fall away of ourselves, or be cast away in the great day of judgment.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
When we admit into our minds hard thoughts of the words and works of Jesus, we enter into temptation, which, if the Lord in mercy prevent not, will end in drawing back. The corrupt and wicked heart of man often makes that an occasion for offence, which is matter of the greatest comfort. Our Lord had, in the foregoing discourse, promised eternal life to his followers; the disciples fastened on that plain saying, and resolved to cleave to him, when others fastened on hard sayings, and forsook him. Christ's doctrine is the word of eternal life, therefore we must live and die by it. If we forsake Christ, we forsake our own mercies. They believed that this Jesus was the Messiah promised to their fathers, the Son of the living God. When we are tempted to backslide or turn away, it is good to remember first principles, and to keep to them. And let us ever remember our Lord's searching question; Shall we go away and forsake our Redeemer? To whom can we go? He alone can give salvation by the forgiveness of sins. And this alone brings confidence, comfort, and joy, and bids fear and despondency flee away. It gains the only solid happiness in this world, and opens a way to the happiness of the next.
Ellen G. White
That I May Know Him, 254.3

They must be Christlike, meek and lowly of heart, self-denying, self-sacrificing; they must walk in the narrow path trodden by the Man of Calvary if they would share in the gift of life and the glory of heaven. But the test was too great. They walked no more with Him. They could not hear the saying nor comprehend the nature of the truth He taught.... TMK 254.3

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6, 133

Everyone who has been converted to God is called upon to grow in capability by using his talents; every branch of the living Vine that does not grow is pruned off and cast away as rubbish. What, then, shall be the character of the education given in our schools? Shall it be according to the wisdom of this world or according to that wisdom that is from above? Will not teachers awake to their responsibility in this matter and see that the word of God has a larger place in the instruction given in our schools? 6T 133.1

One great object of our schools is the training of youth to engage in service in our institutions and in different lines of gospel work. The people everywhere are to have the Bible opened to them. The time has come, the important time when through God's messengers the scroll is being unrolled to the world. The truth comprised in the first, second, and third angels’ messages must go to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people; it must lighten the darkness of every continent and extend to the islands of the sea. Nothing of human invention must be allowed to retard this work. That this may be accomplished, there is need of cultivated and consecrated talent; there is need of persons who can do excellent work in the meekness of Christ because self is hid in Christ. Novices cannot acceptably do the work of unfolding the hidden treasure to enrich souls in spiritual things. “Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.” “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:7, 15. This charge to Timothy is to be an educating power in every family and in every school. 6T 133.2

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 4, 90

Self-deception is upon them. During the calm, what firmness they manifest! what courageous sailors they make! But when the furious tempests of trial and temptation come, lo! their souls are shipwrecked. Men may have excellent gifts, good ability, splendid qualifications; but one defect, one secret sin indulged, will prove to the character what the worm-eaten plank does to the ship—utter disaster and ruin! 4T 90.1

Dear brother, God in His providence brought you from your farm to ----- to bear the tests and trials which you could not have where you were. He has given you some testimonies of reproof, which you professedly accepted; but your spirit was continually chafed under rebuke. You are like those who walked no more with Jesus after He brought close, practical truths to bear upon them. You have not taken hold in faith to correct the defects marked out in your character. You have not humbled your proud spirit before God. You have stood at warfare against the Spirit of God as revealed in reproof. Your carnal, unsubdued heart is not subject to control. You have not disciplined yourself. Time and again your uncontrolled temper, your spirit of insubordination, has gained complete mastery over you. How can such an impulsive, unsubdued soul live among the pure angels? It cannot be admitted into heaven, as you yourself know. If so, you cannot begin too soon to correct the evil in your nature. Be converted, and become as a little child. 4T 90.2

Brother, you are proud-spirited, lofty in your thoughts and ideas of yourself. All this must be put away. Your relatives have learned to fear these outbreaks of temper. Your tender, God-fearing mother has done her best to soothe and indulge you, and has tried to remove every cause that would produce this self-rising, this uncontrollable disposition in her son. But coaxing, pleading, and seeking to pacify have led you to consider that this impulsive temper is incurable and that it is the duty of your friends to bear with it. All this petting and excusing has not remedied the evil, but rather given it license. 4T 90.3

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Ellen G. White
Selected Messages Book 3, 349

If those who have done this work take shelter in the statement that they are led by the Holy Spirit, it is as Satan clothing himself with the heavenly garments of purity, while still working out his own attributes.—Letter 98, 1897, pp. 5, 9. 3SM 349.1

So-called Discrepancies and Contradictions in the Testimonies—Those who have chosen to follow their own way, have begun to publish the discrepancies and contradictions, so-called, that they claim to find in connection with the Testimonies; and they are misstating some matters by using their own words instead of the words found in my writings. These charges will have to be met, that truth may take the place of falsehood.—Letter 162, 1906. 3SM 349.2

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