Walking Thru The Bible

New Testament -- Gospel of John

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                 Walking Thru The Bible
                     Gospel of John

          The book of John is unique among the Gospels.  There
     is no mention of the birth and early years of Jesus.  A
     great amount of attention is focused on Jesus' final
     instructions to the apostles.
          Most of the events related in John are found nowhere
     else in Scripture--the first miracle at Cana, the first
     cleansing of the temple, Nicodemus' visit with the Lord,
     Lazarus' resurrection, etc.
     Author:  The book refers to its author calling himself
     "the disciple whom Jesus loved...who has written these
     things," John 21:20, 24.  The writer obviously was a
     Palestinian Jew who was an eyewitness of the events of
     Christ's life, for he displays knowledge of Jewish
     customs (7:37-39; 18:28) and of the land of Palestine
     (1:44, 46; 5:2) and he includes details of an eyewitness
     (2:6; 13:26; 21:8, 11).  Both internal and external
     evidences point to the apostle John the son of Zebedee
     and Salome as the author.  It appears that John preached
     in the area of Ephesus in the middle of the first century
     and that the gospel was written about that time before
     the destruction of the city in AD 70, ["Now there is at
     Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in
     the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches." John
     Purpose of the Book:  The Gospel of John has clearly an
     evangelistic purpose, presenting Jesus and calling upon
     men to make a decision about him  (John 20:31).  The book
     opens with an affirmation that eternal life is to be
     found in Christ (John 1:4).  While Matthew was written
     primarily for the Jewish audience, and Mark and Luke for
     the Roman and Greek, John appears to have been aimed at
     a universal audience.
     Major Themes:
          1.  One of the unique themes of John's Gospel is the
     opening doctrine of the Word (Greek, ho logos), John 1:1-18.  
     The Jew understood that ho logos created the world
     (Gen.1:3), gave life (Isa.55:3) and accomplished the
     divine purpose in all things (Isa.55:11).  The Greeks
     perceived ho logos as giving the universe order and
     harmony (e.g., Heraclitus) and serving to direct mankind
     to ultimate realities.
               John presents Jesus as the divine logos who has
     come in the flesh.  To the Jew, this meant that God's
     power, plans, and promises were contained in Jesus.  To
     the Greek, it suggested that the one who created and gave
     order to the universe, who sustained it in an orderly
     fashion had come in the flesh to dwell among men.
          2.  In John's gospel the evidential nature of
     miracles as signs is most prominent.  A miracle is "an
     extraordinary work of God in the world which serves as a
     sign or attestation."  We often hear the word used
     loosely and incorrectly.  A miracle (dunamis) is a mighty
     work or exhibition of extraordinary power.  John uses the
     idea of Jesus' miracles being 'signs' (semeion) a
     distinguishing mark or seal of genuineness, (John 2:23;
     3:2; 4:54; 6:2, 14).
               Miracles in the Bible served the purpose to
     accredit a man as being from God (e.g, Moses before
     Pharaoh, etc.)  In Jesus' case his miracles confirmed
     that he was from God (5:35; 3:1-2) and identified him as
     the Messiah (7:31), and gained the attention of the
     people and showed God's compassion for the plight of
               It is impossible to remove miracles from the
     life and record of Jesus Christ.  If one rejects the
     miracles (including the virgin birth and Jesus'
     resurrection) he has no grounds for accepting the
     philosophy and truthfulness of Jesus.
               On the other hand there are obvious contrasts
     between Jesus' miracles and the alleged miracles of
     today's "faith healers."  Jesus worked miracles in the
     absence of faith, he worked a variety of miracles,
     including control over nature, multiplying food, raising
     the dead, and were never done for selfish gain.
          3.  Jesus speaks of the "new birth" in John 3:1-21
     and expresses that a man must be born again, or from
     above, to enter into the kingdom of heaven.  This new
     birth involves water and the spirit.  The association of
     "water" with the process of man beginning life anew would
     immediately be identified with baptism in the mind of
     Nicodemus and those in that time.  As seen in the context
     of this passage John was baptizing multitudes and this
     was for the forgiveness of sins (John 1:15-34; 3:22-28;
     Mark 1:4).
               Baptism is consistently paralleled with one
     beginning a new life in Christ (cf. Romans 6:3-6; 1 Peter
     3:21).  It pictures the putting to death of the man of
     sin and his burial, his cleansing by the blood of Christ
     (Rev. 1:5), and his resurrection from the grave of water
     to a new life (Rom. 6:4-6).
     John's Plan in the Gospel:  The thesis of John's record
     is that Jesus was God in the flesh.  The principle part
     of the book provides supporting evidence of this thesis. 
     John presents seven great signs (or miracles) that serve
     to credential Jesus as the Son of God.       Nicodemus
     said something about the power of these miracles when he
     said in John 3:2 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
     _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     1st sign (2:1-11)   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     2nd sign (4:46-54)  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     3rd sign (5:1-18)   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     4th sign (6:1-14)   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     5th sign (6:15-21)  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     6th sign (9:1-41)   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
     7th sign (11:1-57)  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
          John presents seven witness who give their testimony
     to Jesus as the Son of God.   Who were these witnesses
     and what did they say, (1) John 1:34 (1:19-36);  (2) John
     1:49 (43-51);  (3) John 6:69 (66-69);  (4) John 11:27; 
     (5) John 20:28;  (6)  John 20:31;  (7) John 10:36 (31-47). 
          John presents the seven great "I AM" statements of
     the Lord himself and his own claims.  (1) 6:35;  (2)
     8:12;  (3) 8:58;  (4) 10:11;  (5) 11:25;  (6) 14:6;  (7)
          And John presents clearly his own purpose for
     writing these things,  "And many other signs truly did
     Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not
     written in this book:  But these are written, that ye
     might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God;
     and that believing ye might have life through his name."
     (John 20:30-31).
     Overview of John:
           I.  Incarnation of the Son of God, 1:1-18
          II.  Presentation of the Son of God, 1:19 - 4:54
         III.  Confrontations with the Son of God, 5:1-12:50
               A.  At a feast in Jerusalem, 5:1-47
               B.  At passover time in Galilee, 6:1-71
               C.  At f east of tabernacles, 7:1-10:21
               D.  At feast of dedication, 10:22-42
               E.  At Bethany, 11:1-12:11
               F.  At Jerusalem, 12:12-50
         IV.  Instructions by the Son of God, 13:1 - 16:33
          V.  Intercession of the Son of God, 17:1-26
         VI.  Crucifixion of the Son of God, 18:1 - 19:42
        VII.  Resurrection of the Son of God, 20:1 - 21:25
               A.  The empty tomb, 20:1-20
               B.  His appearances afterwards 20:11-21:25

SERMON - - - - - - -

                  A Service With Jesus
                John 20:19-23  (Luke 24)
     1.  What first Lord's Day service do you remember?
          Here is one that stands out in John's mind.
     2.  Notice the week the disciples had come through.
     3.  Look at the condition of their spirit when they met.
     4.  Jesus met with them on that great day, and let's
          notice three things that happened in that assembly:
            A.  By What Was Not Said.
                 Jesus did not shame and criticize them.
            B.  By What Was Said.
                 Jesus greeted them with 'Shalom' or "Peace,"   
                 and really wanted them to have the peace He    
                 could give them (v.19, v.21).
            When the Lord appears they were terrified and how
            does He convince them?  What evidence?  (Luke 24:37, 38-39)
            A.  The Scars -- Luke 24:39
            B.  The Scriptures -- Lk.24:44-46; Isa. 53; Psa.22
           John 19:21-23 is John's record of the commission. 
           They had been challenged before (Matt. 10) but now it is
           broader and greater.  How would they respond?
           A.  This Would Be An Exalted Privilege
                1.   They would be ambassadors.  Credentials.
                2.   They would go in the name of Christ.
                3.   They had a message for every man -- that every
                      man needed to hear -- (2 Cor.4:4-5; 1Tim.1:11-12)
           B.  It Would Be Extremely Personal
                Even as I send "you," that means Peter, James, etc.
                1.   Can we imagine the personal resolution on the
                      part of each one as he hears he is to be sent!
                2.   Think how each one has a chance to talk of
                      something like this.
        1 .  Follow these apostles after this Sunday meeting, do
              you think any said, "Well, I slept half way through it!"
              or "I didn't get much out of it!"
        2.  What effect did this meeting have on those present? 
             How did it affect their conduct?
        3.  What can a "Sunday Service" do for you and me?

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