So That You May Believe: a study of John
Over the next few weeks we’re going to be studying the gospel of John in depth. This week on the app you’ll be able to see the visual aids we have prepared for you and an overview of John. I’ll also give some ideas of what we can do to study for ourselves from today until next Thursday when a post will be out about the first five chapters of John in depth and interpreted.
The main idea of John is for the readers to understand that Jesus is God and believing in him is the only way to the Father and to eternal life. John is one of the greatest gospels for a special reason- it was written specifically to bring the gospel to the second and third generation seekers (or the gentiles- AKA non-Jews) so that they might believe and receive eternal life as well. The reason that is special is because the other three Gospels-Matthew, Mark, and Luke- are focused on Jewish culture. Matthew was written specifically for the Jewish people and is full of Jewish traditions and references to the Torah (the first five books of the bible), which any non-Jew would not understand. Mark is more like the story of Jesus and told in such a way leaving out some key information for nonbelievers. Luke is simply full of parables, stories to teach lessons which gives us a lot of information about Jesus and a lot of lessons to learn, but it doesn’t quite give us what we need as non-Jews looking for salvation. John does. John’s goal and mission was to reach those people, us. Non-Jews. Gentiles. Sinners.
The reason I wanted to start with John is because some of us are new believers and some of us are maybe believers since a long time but are new to the bible as far as studying for ourselves go. John is the perfect place to start to give us a thirst and foundation to going deeper into the word the next months.
From beginning to the end, John is full of signs and wonders from Jesus. In John we get to see all the signs and miracles Jesus performed, and we get to read the lessons and teachings behind every miracle to help us better understand him and salvation. Throughout the book we get to learn about eternal life, Holy Spirit, faith and belief, the ‘I am’ statements, and the testimony and witness. As the week’s progress, Sam and I will go into detail and give you the historical background and interpretations you need. We will have an email set up for you to send any questions or requests for specific passages to interpret as well(see bottom of post).
This gospel is split into seven signs and seven teachings. Next week we will go through the first three signs which happen in chapters 2-5. This week we should all be reading chapters 1-5, if you finish them fast then read them a second time with a few colored pencils or highlighters and mark up the chapters specifically looking at people, places, time, repeated themes/phrases, and contrasts (HINT- any time you see the word ‘but’ it’s a contrast).
Let’s dig deep!
Our first step is always to PRAY first! Let Holy Spirit take you and love on your soul and teach you about Jesus!
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