This gospel is credited to "the disciple whom Jesus loved." This says a lot about the man John. It is safe to say that John was a Jewish man, this can be clearly seen by his accuracy about Jewish customs, Jewish way of thinking, and by his quotations from the Hebrew Old Testament. He was familiar with the topography of the land of Israel from a Jewish perspective, as well. It is easy to see in his writings that he was a close disciple of Jesus, an eyewitness of the events surrounding Jesus' ministry.
In the book of John, Jesus is the eternal Word made flesh. He came to this world, and the world rejected Him, but anyone who would believe and receive Him would have life through His name. John makes one thing clear in this gospel. John sought to lead men to eternal life by first convincing them to believe in Jesus. The miracles in this book were actually recorded as "signs" to confirm His deity. John called Jesus the bread of life, the light of the world, the good shepherd, the way the truth and the life, the true vine – all to confirm that men should believe on Jesus.
The author of the Gospel of John is identified in John 21:20 as "The disciple whom Jesus loved" who leaned on Jesus' breast. Of the early church historical writings from early second century AD, Theophilus of Antioch (170 AD) was the first to write the name John as the author. Shortly after this Irenaeus identified John as the disciple who had leaned on Jesus' breast. This is especially important because Irenaeus was a disciple of Polycarp, who had known the man John personally. Most scholars conclude that the book of John was written around 85 or 90 AD probably before the exile to Patmos.
The "Synoptic Gospels" - Matthew, Mark and Luke all have their unique perspective of the life of Jesus Christ. John’s focus is clearly the deity of Jesus. John also gives us a bit more information about Jesus' ministry in Jerusalem, where Matthew, Mark and Luke focus more on His Galilean ministry. There are also differences regarding the chronology of the last week of Christ's life (Passion Narrative). The Gospel accounts do not place their focus on chronology and orderly biography of the ministry of Jesus, but rather they focus the gospel around their perspective of their unique portrayal of Jesus Christ.
July 1-7 | John 1:1-12
July 8-14 | John 1:13-51
July 15-21 | John 2
July 22-28 | John 3
July 29 – August 4 | John 4
August 5-11 | John 5
August 12-18 | John 6
August 19-25 | John 7
August 26-September 1 | John 8
September 2-8 | John 9
September 9-15 | John 10
September 16-22 | John 11
September 23-29 | Read John 12
September 30-October 6 | John 13
October 7-13 | John 14
October 14-20 | John 15
October 21-27 | John 16
October 28-November 3 | John 17
November 4-10 | John 18
November 11-17 | John 19
November 18-24 | John 20
November 25 – December 1 | John 21
In the gospel of John, the author focuses on the divinity of Jesus as the Son of God. As God’s Son, he is qualified to fulfill all the requirements of being our savior. Throughout this Gospel, Jesus makes seven famous “I AM” Statements. Much like in the Old Testament, when Moses asks God who he should say sent him to the Pharaoh of Egypt, God replied say “I AM THAT I AM” as evidence of the One who sent him. Much like the same way, Jesus made strong claims about his divinity and his unique role in the life of the believer through these “I AM” statements. They tell us much about who Jesus really is designed to be in our lives.
In John 1:7, another major theme word of the gospel of John appears: witness. This word appears fourteen times in the Gospel of John. John’s purpose in writing is to prove that Jesus is the Savior and the Son of God, and to do this he presents an impressive selection of witnesses. Through them, he seeks to multiply those who come to believe in Jesus Christ. Witnesses are necessary when establishing facts or truth. We accept the reports of credible witnesses, especially when there are a number of them who agree. When credible witnesses testify, we are morally bound to accept what they say as true. In like manner, John’s Gospel presents us with such witnesses to Christ.
Click or Tap to learn more about each witness below.
First, there is the witness of God the Father. In John 8:18b, Jesus said, “The Father who sent me bears witness about me.”
Jesus, God the Son, also bore witness to Himself. He said, “If I do bear witness about myself, my testimony is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going” (John 8:14).
Third is the witness of God the Holy Spirit, whom Jesus promised to send as our helper when He returned to heaven: “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me” (John 15:26).
Jesus also pointed to His works: “The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me” (John 10:25b).
Fifth is the witness of Scripture. The most important purpose of the Old Testament was to give prophecies that Jesus would be fulfilled as Messiah. Jesus said, “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me” (John 5:39).
One of the Old Testament’s prophecies concerned a forerunner to the Messiah, one who would come before Jesus and whose ministry would resemble that of the prophet Elijah. This is John the Baptist, the sixth of John’s witnesses.
John’s seventh witness is Jesus’ disciples, including John himself. Jesus told them, “You also will bear witness, because you have been with me from the beginning” (John 15:27).
The eighth witness is the men and women who personally encountered Jesus. One was the Samaritan woman whom Jesus met by the well. After Jesus had revealed Himself to her, she went throughout her town as a witness to the power of Jesus: “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” (John 4:29).
Another was the man who was born blind, to whom Jesus miraculously gave sight. When the religious leaders tried to quiet Him his witness, He said: “One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see” (John 9:25).