John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary

Verse 18 (John 14:18)

I will not leave you comfortless ,.... Gr. "orphans", or "fatherless". Christ stands in the relation of a Father to his people, and they are his children, his spiritual seed and offspring; and so the disciples might fear, that as Christ was going from them, they should be left as children without a father, in a very desolate and comfortless, condition: to support them against these fears, Christ promises that he would not leave them thus, at least not long:

I will come to you ; in a very short time, as he did; for on the third day he rose again from the dead, and appeared to them, which filled them with great joy. So among the Jews, disciples, and the world too, are represented as fatherless, when their doctors and wise men are removed by death. Says R. Aba, F24 Zohar in Num fol. 96. 3. & in Lev. fol. 42. 3. & in Exod. fol. 10. 3. & 28. 3. and so sometimes others, concerning R. Simeon ben Jochai,

"woe to the world when thou shall go out of it, woe to the generation that shall be in the world when thou shall remove from them, וישתארון יתמין , "and they shall be left fatherless by thee".'

And in another place F25 Midrash Hannealam in Zohar in Gen. fol. 65. 4. ;

"afterwards R. Akiba went out and cried, and his eyes flowed with water, and he said, woe Rabbi, woe Rabbi, for the world is left, יתום , "fatherless by thee".'

- John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary