Friday, June 6, 2014

The Gospel of John: Context of Authorship

John, Book of Kells (800 CE)
The Gospel of John is very different from the Synoptic Gospels in composition and content. But it is also very different in theology, and it is my aim to demonstrate it's dependence and opposition to the Synoptic Gospels, especially Matthew and Mark, and the Catholic theology they espouse. Although I am treading on ground already covered by Joseph Turmel some ninety years ago, and more recently by Roger Parvus,  [1] there is still much to be learned by a comparison between John and the Synoptic  Gospels in Catholic form. To that end I will survey some of the most obvious passages without attempting to splice the layers, with the hope of demonstrating the allegorical meaning the original author intended.

In surveying the content of the Gospel of John today with knowledge of the second century controversies, I am struck by the consistent and blunt repudiation of the Jewish God as the father of Christ, and more generally its opposition against every Jewish Christian theological point we find presented in the rest of the New Testament. It is truly a wonder this book, even with redaction, ever made it into canon.