Gospel of John

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The Gospel according to John (Greek τὸ εὐαγγέλιον κατὰ Ἰωάννην) commonly referred to as the Gospel of John [1] is an account of the public ministry of Jesus. It begins with the witness and affirmation by John the Baptist and concludes the death, burial, Resurrection, and post-Resurrection appearances of Jesus. This account is fourth of the canonical gospels, after the synoptics Matthew, Mark and Luke.

The Gospel's authorship is anonymous. Its Chapter 21 states it derives from the testimony of the 'disciple whom Jesus loved.' Along with Peter, the unnamed disciple is especially close to Jesus, and early-church tradition identified him as John the Apostle, one of Jesus' Twelve Apostles. The gospel is closely related in style and content to the three surviving Epistles of John such that commentators treat the four books together.[2] According to the majority of modern scholars, John was not the author of any of these books,[3] though many scholars plead ignorance in the case of this gospel.[4]

Raymond E. Brown did pioneering work to trace the development of the tradition from which the gospel arose.[5] The discourses seem to be concerned with the actual issues of the church-and-synagogue debate at the time when the Gospel was written[6] c. AD 90. It is notable that, in the gospel, the community still appears to define itself primarily against Judaism, rather than as part of a wider Christian church.[7] Though Christianity started as a movement within Judaism, gradually Christians and Jews became bitterly opposed.[8]

John presents a higher Christology than the synoptics, describing Jesus as the incarnation of the divine Logos through whom all things were made, as the object of veneration,[9] and (according to some scholars) more explicitly as God incarnate.[10] Only in John does Jesus talk at length about himself and his divine role, often shared with the disciples only. Against the synoptics, John focuses largely on different miracles (including resurrecting Lazarus), given as signs meant to engender faith. Synoptic elements such as parables and exorcisms are not found in John. It presents a realized eschatology in which salvation is already present for the believer. The gospel includes gnostic elements.[11][12] According to the majority viewpoint, the differences between the teaching in John and in the Synoptics is so great that only one of the two accounts can be historical, and scholars choose the Synoptics over John.[13][14] Some prominent scholars,[who?] however, maintain that the gospel was written by the disciple John and that it, like the synoptics, is historically reliable.

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