The Prophetic Gospel: Study of John and the Old Testament
Why is the account of Jesus in the Fourth Gospel so very different from the one we find in the Synoptic Gospels?
Professor Hanson believes that at least part of the answer can be found in the considerable dependence of John's narrative on the Old Testament. The first thirteen chapters of this book are devoted to careful examination of the language of the Gospel in this light. Again and again this shows that passages are heavily influenced by the Old Testament, mostly from the Septuagint but also sometimes by the targumic tradition.
This leads to the conclusion that John was writing what might be called a 'prophetic gospel' rather than an historical account of Jesus' life. He saw many passages in what he regarded as scripture as containing prophecies which must have been fulfilled in the life and teaching of Jesus, despite having no historical basis. Although this is not to say that John freely invented speeches and episodes as he chose, John thus felt justified in departing widely from the early tradition about Jesus. Professor Hanson contends that Johannine scholarship has suffered too much from the conviction that scholars must defend the substantially historical nature of the Fourth Gospel.
The study ends with a consideration of John's christology and of how the Church today should regard the Fourth Gospel.
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Chapter One The Problem Gospel
Chapter Two The Word on Sinai and at Bethel
Chapter Three The New Temple the Brazen Serpent
Chapter Four The Word as Source of Living Water and of
Chapter Five Hearing and Seeing God the Word against
Chapter Six Jesus Teaching at the Feast of Tabernacles
Chapter Seven The Word as Light and as Angel
Chapter Eight The Word as Shepherd and as Son of God
Chapter Thirteen Death and Resurrection
Chapter Fourteen Johns Use of Scripture
Chapter Fifteen The Earthly and the Risen Jesus
Chapter Sixteen The Icon of Jesus
Chapter Seventeen The Historical Question
Chapter Eighteen The Purpose of the Gospel
Chapter Nineteen The Fourth Gospel in the Church Today
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