It is, I believe, impossible to determine for certain whether or not John used or even knew of the Synoptic Gospels. Another difference between the Synoptics and the fourth Gospel is the writers' view of eschatology. The responses to the bread of life discourse 7:9 H. Likewise "darkness" stands for ignorance and sin (-20; ; , 46).They all share the same basic view, namely, that the Jews' rejection of their Messiah resulted in the postponement of the messianic kingdom. John the Apostle introduced John the Baptist because "John" the Baptist bore "witness to the Light," namely: Jesus.The writer of this Gospel did not identify himself as such in the text. Nevertheless there is evidence within this Gospel, as well as in the writings of the church fathers, that the writer was the Apostle John. The Gospel of John presents God as a gracious person. There are probably hundreds of evidences of God's love resulting in gracious action in this book. Light is a common figure for God's holiness in the Old Testament. The tabernacle was the place where God revealed Himself and around which His people congregated to worship Him in response. Their service consisted of carrying out His mission for them in the world. When we learn who God is, as we study this Gospel, our reaction should not only be worship but service. 15 C' What we have received from the Word: grace v. 15 A' The relationship of the Logos to humankind, re-creation, and God vv.The internal evidence from the Gospel itself is as follows. Note just the evidence of these qualities in the seven signs that John chose to record. The principle of God's holiness governs the passion of His love. The Son of God is the Person through whom God has now given the greatest and fullest revelation of Himself, and around whom we now bow in worship (cf. The revelation of God should always result in service as well as worship (cf. This is true of the church as a whole and of every individual believer in it. 16 B' What came through the Word: grace and truth v. 18 Jeff Staley also saw a chiasm in these verses, though his perception of the parts is slightly different from Culpepper's. 16-18 These structural analyses point out that all that John wrote in this prologue centers on God's gift of eternal life that comes to people through the Word (v. This emphasis on salvation through Jesus continues to be central throughout the Gospel (cf. John began his Gospel by locating Jesus before the beginning of His ministry, before His virgin birth, and even before Creation.This would put the fourth Gospel later than the Synoptics. The Greeks used the word logos to describe the reason or mind of God. 14), was not only God, but He was the expression of God to humankind. The word "word" had this metaphorical meaning in Jewish and Greek literature when John wrote his Gospel. He was not less of God than the Father was, or the Spirit in His essence.Second, according to early church tradition the Apostle John lived long into the first century. Jesus' life and ministry expressed to humankind what God wanted us to know (cf. "To the Hebrew 'the word of God' was the self-assertion of the divine personality; to the Greek the formula denoted the rational mind that ruled the universe." "It has not been proven beyond doubt whether the term logos, as John used it, derives from Jewish or Greek (Hellenistic) backgrounds or from some other source. Thus John made one of the great Trinitarian statements in the Bible in this verse.He was also the disciple who sat beside Jesus in the upper room when He instituted the Lord's Supper, and to whom Peter motioned (-24). It was apparently from Polycarp that Irenaeus learned that, "John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon His breast, had himself published a Gospel during his residence in Ephesus in Asia." Some scholars have rejected this seemingly clear evidence and have refused to accept Johannine authorship. All of these claims point to God as the source of, and to Jesus as the mediator of, things having to do with truth. Graciousness should stamp our works as we deal with people. The Bible does not teach a timeless state either before Creation or after the consummation of all things. Origen and Plato held it, as do some modern eastern religions and some uninformed Christians, but it is not a biblical teaching. We often refer to this pre-creation time as "eternity past." This is the time ("beginning") that John referred to here.This means that he was one of the Twelve, since only they were present in the upper room (Mark ; Luke ). This criticism generally comes from those who hold a lower view of Scripture. If they do not, we have not yet comprehended the revelation of God that Jesus came to bring to His own. Time is the way God and people measure events in relationship to one another. At the beginning of this eternity, when there was nothing else, "the Word" existed.
Such a shift in emphasis is understandable if John wrote later than the other Gospel evangelists. The perfectly balanced christology of the Fourth Gospel was intended, we believe, to provide a resolution of this theological crisis: to remind the ex-Jewish members of the group, with their strong emphasis on the humanity of Jesus, that the Christ was divine; and to insist, for the benefit of the ex-pagan members (with their docetic outlook), that Jesus was truly human." The context of Jesus' ministry accounts for the strong Jewish flavor that marks all four Gospels. "The Synoptics present him for a generation in process of being evangelized; John presents him as the Lord of the maturing and questioning believer." As a piece of literature, John's Gospel has a symphonic structure. The name "John" means "God is gracious" or "gift of God." John was a prophet in the tradition of the Old Testament prophets who bore witness to the light (Exod. He always referred to himself obliquely: either as "the disciple whom Jesus loved," or as "the other disciple," or in some other veiled way.
The "disciple whom Jesus loved" was also one of the inner circle of three disciples, namely: Peter, James, and John (Mark -38; 9:2-3; ; John 20:2-10). Answering their objections lies outside the purpose of these notes. Sloppy graciousness jeopardizes truthfulness, and rigid truthfulness endangers graciousness. This Gospel has a strong appeal to non-Christians as well. 14) are also important theological terms, but they occur only in the prologue. Another view, a less probable one, is that John was referring back to the same "beginning" that Moses wrote about in Genesis 1:1. Genesis 1 described God's first creation; John's theme is God's new creation.
James died in the early history of the church, probably in the early 40s (Acts 12:2). During the first century, that city was one of the largest centers of Christian activity in the Gentile world. Peter's question about Jesus' departure and Jesus' reply -38 3. John wrote it specifically to bring the light of revelation about Jesus' true identity to those who sit in spiritual darkness (-31). "But supremely, the Prologue summarizes how the 'Word' which was with God in the very beginning came into the sphere of time, history, tangibilityin other words, how the Son of God was sent into the world to become the Jesus of history, so that the glory and grace of God might be uniquely and perfectly disclosed. "John is writing about a new beginning, a new creation, and he uses words that recall the first creation. Like the first, the second is not carried out by some subordinate being.
This would make a later date possible even though it does not prove a later date. In general, most authorities reject a date this early for these and other reasons. Nor is it plain what associations John meant to convey by his use of it. In His essence, Jesus is equal with the Father, but He exists as a separate person within the Godhead.
Some students of the book believe that John -22 implies that Peter would die before John did, and Peter died about A. Some conservatives date the Gospel slightly before A. 70, because John described Palestine and Jerusalem as they were before the Roman destruction (cf. This may be a weak argument, since John frequently used the Greek present tense to describe things in the past. Compared to the Synoptics, which present Jesus as a historical figure, John also stressed the deity of Jesus. Readers are left to work out the precise allusions and significance for themselves. There is probably no fully adequate illustration of the Trinity in the natural world. An egg consists of three parts: shell, yolk, and white. It was the second person of the Trinity who created the universe and "all" it contains. The Word did not act independently from the Father. we move on from creation in general to the creation of life, the most significant element in creation.
Some who hold this date note the absence of any reference to Jerusalem's destruction in John. Early church tradition was that John wrote it when he was an older man. Darrell Bock described this difference as the Synoptics viewing Jesus from the earth up, and John viewing Jesus from heaven down. John was working with allusions to the Old Testament, but he was also writing to an audience familiar with Hellenistic (Greek) thought, and certain aspects of his use of logos would occur to them. In view of Old Testament usage, it carries connotations of creation (Gen. Each part is fully egg, yet each has its own identity that distinguishes it from the other parts. Father, mother, and child are all separate entitiesyet each one is fully a member of his or her own family. Thus John presented Jesus as under God the Father's authority, but over every created thing in authority. "In the time of John this kind of belief was widespread. Life is one of John's characteristic concepts: he uses the word 36 times, whereas no other New Testament writing has it more than 17 times (Revelation; next come Romans with 14 times and 1 John with 13 times).