Matthew, Mark and Luke were written about AD 60-64, a generation after Christ died, rose and ascended into heaven. John wrote his Gospel account another generation after that; about AD 90-96. While the first 3 are referred to as The Synoptic Gospels, as they are written almost as if seen through ‘one eye.’ John’s comes considerably later, with a slightly different view or perspective about it. That is not to say he actually differs significantly or in any way disagrees. But, what we want to know is this: Does John also portray The Real New Testament Message as being comprised of the same 10 Essential Elements as Matthew, Mark and Luke? That’s what I want to know. For those 10 Elements, see my previous post.
Let’s begin with John, chapters 1 and 2. John opens by declaring that Jesus Christ is fully divine. This was to counter the heresy of his day, and ours, that Jesus was only a man. Jesus was God incarnate. God come down, and wrapped up in or clothed Himself with, human flesh. He came to be the Messiah and Savior! With verse 7, we read that John the Baptist came that all men might #7, believe on Jesus. Verses 12 and 13 tell us that all who #7, believe on Jesus, receive Him; and that this results in #8, the New Birth into God’s family as His child! Jesus is proclaimed to be #4, the Savior, in that He brought God’s grace to us in verse 17; and John the Baptist declares Him to be so in verse 29, when he says that Jesus “takes away the sin of the world!” John’s testimony to Christ’s baptism in verses 32 thru 34 is to tell us that Jesus became God’s Messiah and #4, Savior upon that event. And why does John the Baptist say that Jesus came? Not only to take away the sins of the world, as stated in verse 29, but also, and this is so important, to baptize some with the Holy Spirit of #8, the New Birth in verse 33. Jesus is again identified as #4, the Savior in verses 36, 42, 45 and 49. Jesus, Himself concludes chapter 1 with a commendation for His new disciple, Nathanael, for having #7, believed.
From chapter 2, Jesus changes water to wine, and His disciples put their #7, faith in Him. He next clears the Temple, alludes to #5, the Gospel, as it concerns His death with verses 21 and 22, and we again read of others #7, believing in His name with verse 23.
I believe that what we will see is that John also adheres to the concept that there are 10 Essential Elements to The Real New Testament Message, but that he will present them with a different emphasis, putting some forward more forcefully than others. It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell