LESSON FOUR: JOHN PART 1

“I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.”
John 6:48-51

Introduction

  • In Matthew, we saw how Yeshua is revealed as the Seed of David – and He is therefore King Messiah.
  • In Mark and Luke we focused on the story-telling method of teaching disciples. It is to make a single point, not to develop “hidden theologies.”
  • The Book of John is incorrectly considered by some anti-Semitic.

John

  • Likely written by the Apostle John. Yochanan ben Zavdai was his real name.
  • Likely written well after the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE.
  • Does not follow chronological order.
  • Not much regarding Yeshua’s Galilee ministry.
  • Contains a focus upon Jerusalem, the Temple, and the Feasts.

Understanding the Regions

  • Over 60 occurrences of the word “Jews” [Ioudaios]. Many can be attributed to it being a regional name, not an ethnic one (e.g. Judeans vs. Galileans).
  • There is some evidence of regional diversity. In the early First Century, the Galil region was the “wild and wooly.” The Torah teachers from Galil were often miracle workers and less refined than those in Judea (Honi the Circle Drawer, Hanina Ben Dosa).
  • The Book of John’s focus on Yeshua’s ministry in Jerusalem and seven miracle signs seems to be making a case for the regional differences in Judaism.

Seven Messianic Signs

  • Water to Wine (John 2:1-11)
  • Healing at Cana (John 4:43-54)
  • Healing at Bethesda (John 5:1-15)
  • Feeding the Multitude – Bread From Heaven (John 6:1-15) (Sanhedrin 99a, Ecc Rabbah 1:28; Ex Mekilta 13:17)
  • Healing the Blind Man (John 9:1-12)
  • The Raising of Lazurus (John 11:1-44)
  • Messiah’s Resurrection (John 20)

Summary

  • John’s account focuses upon Messianic signs, and upon the rightful connection between Messiah and the Temple.
  • Whereas the Synoptic take a more obvious cue from the Prophets in revealing Messiah, John takes a more theological approach.