The Berean Expositor
Volume 53 - Page 50 of 215
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prophecies likewise? Once this is grasped we can understand why this emphasis on the
world is given in the Gospel of John which records part of the Lord's earthly ministry to
Israel.  The Jew had forgotten the Divine reason he had been chosen.  He finally
imagined that God's kingdom purposes were restricted to themselves. Instead of being
willing to be a channel of blessing the world over, they despised and hated the Gentile
Christ's ministry in the synagogue at Nazareth gives a good example of this. At first
the listeners were charmed with His words (Luke 4: 22), but when He widened God's
purpose to include Gentiles (verses 25-27), their attitude immediately changed. They
were filled with fury, seized him and tried to murder Him by throwing Him headlong
from a cliff nearby. From this we can see that Israel, left to themselves, would never
minister to the world at large. What a corrective the Lord's ministry as recorded in John
must have been to them, stressing His love and purpose for the world of mankind, as well
as themselves, so that His Kingdom could one day be realized over the whole earth and
the prayer of Matt. 6: 10 become a reality.
The Author---John 1: 1, 2.
pp. 145 - 149
The claim that John the Apostle was the author of the Gospel has overwhelming
support from both external and internal evidence. Professor F. F. Bruce writes, "from
Irenaeus onwards there is virtual unanimity in the church on the canonicity and
authorship of the Fourth Gospel". Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, and
Eusebius who had access to many works which are now lost, all affirm that John the
Apostle wrote the Gospel.
The internal evidence proves that (1) the author of the Gospel was a Jew; (2) that he
was a Jew of Palestine; (3) that he was an eye-witness of what he describes; (4) that he
was an Apostle, and (5) that he was the Apostle John. The argument in support of this
by Bishop Westcott is massive and conclusive and the reader is referred to his work if
further details are needed.
We shall therefore conclude from all this evidence that the Apostle John was the
beloved disciple whom the Lord Jesus loved. He does not mention his name throughout
the work, but then nor does Matthew, Mark or Luke. This was probably due to John's
modesty and the wish not to be confused with John the Baptist, and also to avoid the too
frequent use of the personal pronoun.
There are clearly three main sections of the Gospel: the Prologue 1: 1-18, the Body
of the Book (the external witness 1: 19 - 12: 50, the witness of His own and finished
work, the eight signs 1: 19 - 20: 31), and the Epilogue chapter 21:  The purpose for
which John wrote the book is clearly stated in 20: 30, 31: "Jesus did many other