An early John?

Discussion in 'Theology' started by Thomas, May 30, 2022.

  1. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Messages:
    12,202
    Likes Received:
    2,510
    Although generally regarded as late, the date and relationship of John to the Synoptics continues to raise fresh insights.

    There are strong arguments that place John early, so much so as to be contemporaneous with Mark, and possibly that John complements and corrects Mark by providing material absent from it, and by correcting details and chronology.

    One argument for an early date is in the temple 'cleansing' in John 2:19. Jesus speaks of the destruction of the temple, something predicted in Matthew and Luke, but there are good cases made that the latter two were written after the destruction has been fulfilled. John, in contrast, shows no sign of any knowledge of the events of 70CE. Rather, he focuses on the miracle of the Resurrection; not on an historical actuality, but an anticipation of God’s miraculous plan. Here the temple is Jesus’ body, as found in Paul’s thought – the church being both the body of Christ and the temple of God.

    Another stems from studies concluding that the extensive points of contact in Luke and John point to John’s influence on Luke rather than vice versa.

    A case in point is the anointing story in Luke, which differs significantly from Mark, and it would appear Luke follows John more closely. Again, in the trial before Pilate, there are a number of points of commonality between Luke and John; the triple declarations of innocence, the triple attempts to release Jesus, the fact that the crowd unsolicited demands Barabas’ release rather than Pilate offering them a choice, the doubled cry by them to crucify Jesus, and the implication that Pilate turns Jesus over to the Jews to crucify him. At each point Luke departs from Mark to make room for Johannine feature. John’s account is internally consistent which would rule out a dependence on Luke.

    Finally the value of John’s chronology. John’s dating of the last supper, which is distinct from the Synoptics’ dating, is highly probable during the period of Jesus’ life, while the Synoptics’ dating does not. John’s mission lasting two-three years, against the Synoptic one, and the repeated trips to Jerusalem would make sense in light of the Jewish leadership’s growing doubts about Jesus as a popular apocalyptic leader, and a threat to public safety.

    Lastly, a note about Nicodemus. There was a Nakdimon ben Gurion who was part of a leading family in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus. Nakdimon would have been an old man at the time of Jesus, and hence the question in John 3:4 “How can a man be born when he is old?”, appropriate to the historical person. This does not prove that John is actually referring to Nakdimon, but does at least suggest that a historical grounding is possible.

    +++

    The above is culled from various sources, I can provide details and references if interested.
     
    Ahanu likes this.
  2. RJM

    RJM God Feeds the Ravens Admin

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Messages:
    8,244
    Likes Received:
    1,883
    Noted
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2022
  3. Ahanu

    Ahanu Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    Messages:
    1,568
    Likes Received:
    271
  4. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Messages:
    12,202
    Likes Received:
    2,510
    That's an interesting essay! Thanks.
     
  5. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    22,708
    Likes Received:
    2,452
    The most trustworthy?

    Is there a chart of this.

    Gospel references by book and accuracy of attributable statements contained therein vs historical facts?

    We always speak of the synoptic gospels supporting and verifying each other. There has got to be a list of where they disagree or are outright wrong if the above quote is accurate.
     
  6. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Messages:
    12,202
    Likes Received:
    2,510
    That's a point of ongoing debate. John's chronology is the more credible.

    Not as far as I know, although there are many resources showing the four gospels side-by-side.

    No such thing as 'historical facts' exist concerning the time period. All history is based on a mix of written testimonies (some called histories) and archaeology. You end up with a data-set that most scholars accept, knowing that a later discovery might upset the applecart.

    I'm not sure how far back what we understand as 'historical fact' reaches... not far, I would have thought.

    Only because Matthew and Luke use Mark. Both of those also have their own source material.

    There are ... John's timeline of the Crucifixion is probably the more accurate ...
     
  7. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    22,708
    Likes Received:
    2,452
    Anytime the applecart gets upset we simply toss out and wave our hands to dismiss those rotten apples as allegory and rearrange the other apples to appeal to new customers....
     

Share This Page