The Gospel according to John


Who is this John?  There were many followers of Jesus named John, since this was a common name.  Although anonymous, the author of this gospel described himself as the disciple whom Jesus loved.  He did not give his specific name, but he also maintained that he was an eyewitness to many of these events.  Is he then the son of Zebedee, John, the brother of James?  This author was clearly an Israelite because of his Palestinian geographical knowledge.  He also knew a lot about Jerusalem religious practices.  However, this Galilean John, the son of Zebedee, would have been quite old when this was written, near the end of the first century CE.  This final Greek version probably comes from Ephesus between 90-110 CE, as the last of the four canonical gospels.  However, there were no other indications that the brother of James was conversant in Greek.  Perhaps there was a Johannine community with an oral tradition from the apostle John that preceded this written Greek gospel.  How many people do you know who are named John?

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