1986, Serial No. 00482

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Saint John




Now, we want to dive into the Gospel, actually, during the next couple of classes, and I'd like to take the following two big subjects. First, the prologue of John, and then the structure of the Gospel of John. Okay, so most of what I've, everything I think I've passed out there has to do with one of those two things, either the prologue or the structure, or both. So we'll spend most of our time today on the prologue, and then go on tomorrow to finish the prologue and then the structure of John. The prologue, why do we spend so much time on it? Because it's the theological key. It's not only the key to the interpretation of John's Gospel itself, but in a sense the key to the, what do you call it, inner sanctum of Christian theology, I think, kind of a capstone or a keystone of our traditional Christian theology, even though it's not the whole thing, obviously. It's got its, kind of, what would you call it, shortcomings, or it's not complete. Now, let me explain those many copies you have.


First, you have an outline of John's Gospel from Brown's commentary, okay, from Brown's... What is it? The Gospel of John is the title. You're familiar with that, I think. The Gospel according to John, two volumes. I wanted to give you an outline or two that you can keep, and then refer to as we go through the Gospel, just to keep you at bearings. So you'll find that that is in two portions. One portion is the outline of the Gospel, and the other is the introduction of the part of the outline to the Book of Glory, so he divides it into two parts. And before we set out today, we'll take a preliminary look at that structure, not in detail but just in a general way. So you have one that is labeled Roman numeral 10, the outline of the Gospel starts on Roman numeral 138 in Brown. Okay, that's the outline of the whole thing. It follows a short introduction and a detailed outline.


And then you have something that starts on page 541, although the page number is not on there, and that's the introduction to the Book of Glory, and part of the outline of the Book of Glory. I didn't put the whole outline there because it's scattered throughout this second volume, so we'll pick it up later on in the rest of it, but you've got part of it. Then, thirdly, you have some pages from Ellis, the Genius of John. Do you recognize that? Have you found that? You've got pages 10 through 21. Okay? Yeah, that's Ellis, the Genius of John. Now, the reason why I gave that to you is that Ellis proposes an alternative structure for John's Gospel, okay? The structure that Brown proposes is more or less straightforward. Ellis proposes something not totally new, because it's way back in tradition, but it's new in our time. That's a chiastic structure, so we'll talk about that, and it's far from being just a


straightforward linear structure. Then also he explains chiasm there, and also he's got... I put part of his treatment of the prologue on the end of that, so you'll be able to see how he structures the prologue as well. So, at the end of that stack of notes from Ellis, then you've got something that looks like it's in the wrong place, and it's labeled Prologue. That's the prologue to Dylan Thomas's poems, and the reason why I put it in there is because it's a chiasm. It looks like it leaked out of the other class, out of the seminar, but it belongs here. It's a chiasm. It's one of the kind of rare examples, and an extended one, too, it's got 101 verses, and the end verse rhymes the beginning verse, and it kind of centers in on the middle. That's more or less for your own amusement, reading pleasure, to an exegesis of it here. The beginning, the very first verse, and the very last verse, if you look at them together,


it's quite similar. It's more than rhyme. They're the same word. The second one rhymes with the next to last, and so on. You can see what kind of an idolatrous that is. You can see how strongly he has to think. And there's a reason in his madness. He's trying to say something with it all. And that's Dylan Thomas. That's Dylan Thomas, yes. Then you have a section from Brown on wisdom motifs in the First Gospel. Okay? So, what John owes to the wisdom tradition of the Old Testament. Now, I've given you such a massive stuff. Don't be discouraged if you don't read it all, or can't read it all, or it seems just like too much. We're not by any means going to use all of that material, but it's for reference. And if you want to go back and check some of the main theses that we're making, like the debt of John, the fact that John is seeing Jesus as wisdom, then that will be helpful to you. But it's not mandatory.


Then you've got another section from Brown, Appendix 2, the Word. Okay? Find that one? That's page 519, and the following pages. Now, that is Brown's attempt to tell you where John gets the idea of the Word, which is the key, is the center of the prologue, and what he means by it, basically. What it means on the basis of where it comes from. We'll talk about that in a little while. And then finally you've got a rather thick article from the Catholic Biblical Quarterly by Joseph Cahill, C-A-H-I-L-L. His name is at the end of the article. It's called The Johannine Logos as Center. There's a fascinating proposition that the Logos moves into, as it were, comparative religions in this way, by establishing the incarnate Word as the center, just as all of the religious traditions have. And even primitive religions have a kind of a center, you know, holy place, holy thing.


We'll get to that later on. That's something that Schneider's picked up. It's an article also that I'd seen a long while ago, and was happy to see her use it. Let's take a look then at the basic structure of John's Gospel on that... I think it's on that... The first one that you have was on that... The first one that I gave you. Now, Brown divides, as many do, the Gospel of John rather obviously into four parts. Two long ones and two short ones. The prologue obviously detaches itself from the rest of the Gospel, okay? It's not in chronological sequence. It's not in historical sequence with the rest of the Gospel. Then you've got a long stretch, which he calls the Book of Signs, and another stretch of comparable size, which he calls the Book of Glory. So, prologue 1, 1 through 18. Then begins the Gospel proper, which is divided into two principal parts.


The Book of Signs extending from the verse right after the prologue up until 1250, up until the end of chapter 12. So basically it's chapters 1 through 12 with the exception of the prologue. And what he calls the Book of Glory, it's been given other names, starting from 13 and extending to 20. Now, if you reflect for a moment, what you have there in the Book of Signs is the whole historical part of the Gospel up until the Last Supper exclusively, up through the entry into Jerusalem, when Jesus makes his final entry into Jerusalem. Then, in the Book of Glory, what you have is what is called in John the hour of Jesus, beginning as soon as the Last Supper begins, in the upper room, with the washing of the feet and the exit of Judas, and proceeding through the whole Last Supper discourse, chapters 13 through 17, through the arrest, the trial, the passion, the death of Jesus, and culminating in the resurrection of Jesus. Okay, so that's the Book of Glory. And you don't have much left. All you have left is chapter 21.


And if you remember, most of the scholars contend that 21 was added on later, so they don't feel obliged to find a place for it in the principal structure of the Gospel. They tack it on as an epilogue, and having one or another opinion of when it was put in, and how it got there, and where it came from, and so on. So, we'll be using that, and then we'll be swinging over to Ellis' structure to compare it. Ellis' structure is a good deal more interesting. It's got a fascination about it. This is pretty straightforward. But this too is helpful, because if you don't have a general idea of the layout, the parts of the Gospel, it's very confusing. We just seem to be adrift at sea. And there's a lot of logic, there's a lot of reason and meaning in this division of Brown, as we'll see as we go on. It's the product of a rather long evolution of scholarship. And it's deeply theological, the signs and glory. The chief alternative structure is the chiastic structure,


which is presented very forcefully by Ellis. Ellis' whole book, The Genius of John, is about that. He read the thesis of Gerhardt, a Jesuit, a few years ago, which proposed that the Gospel of John is structured from start to finish in chiastic form. What is a chiasm? It comes from the letter chi, which is an X in our language. It's kind of crossing. There's one thing called an inclusion, which is not as simple, where you have a circle in the sense that you begin, for instance, that poem of Dylan Thomas, it begins with a line ending with now. And then you've got about a hundred other lines. And then you end with a line, which concludes with now. So you form a kind of a ring, and that's called an inclusion. That by itself is an inclusion. What's a chiasm? A chiasm is when you carry this further,


and you have, say, bird here. And then you have bird here. Or more likely, you have something that rhymes with it, like bird. It's all about the bird. And then you have a center here. So a chiasm has at least five elements. A, B, C, B prime, A prime. Now, note that these elements are paired, except for the middle one. So A and A prime relate to one another, reflect one another. They can reflect one another in more than one way. They can reflect one another in a parallel way, like this. Or they can reflect one another by their difference. They can be opposed to one another. For instance, this one, the Gospel of John, could show you someone having faith in Jesus, accepting Jesus. And this could show you somebody refusing Jesus, rejecting Jesus. That's antithetical parallelism, but it is a parallelism.


Or both of them could show you someone coming to faith in Jesus. Now, that would be just plain straight, but we call it positive parallelism, whatever it is. Obvious. Then that issue of the center. Now, normally one of these chiasms, the center is the key to the whole thing. In other words, theologically, it's a centered structure, which is meant to bring you to a point, and to emphasize a point. So it gives you a big mass of material, and then guides you in this rather mystical, mysterious way, don't want to use the wrong language, to a center. And then leaves you with a center. So we can check Ellis' thesis later on, and see how much we're convinced by the theology that he brings out with these centers. Because that's the test of the thing in the end, is what kind of theological structure it gives you, aside from the mere formalism of this. If you look at that poem of John Thomas's, it looks rather formal. Until you divine some kind of deeper meaning in that, it looks like a pure exercise, a kind of poetic algebra. And you can have the same idea about John's Gospels.


Well, Ellis' thesis is, and this is much more complex than Brown's structure, is that the Gospel of John is structured in these chiasms, so that there are five main parts. Let's say, A, B, C, D, A. And the whole Gospel is structured that way. Five main parts, starting with, excepting the prologue. The prologue is excluded from this. But even chapter 21 is included. And that therefore, the first part reflects the fifth part, the second part reflects the fourth part, and this somehow ties the whole together. And then he says, in addition, that each of these is divided into five. Each of these is divided into, except this one. He doesn't divide this one into five. So he's got an A, a B, a C, a B prime, a D prime here, and so on.


Each of these are the four, but not the middle one. So, if you can swallow that, it really... What's the middle one? The middle one, yeah. Don't know what's in suspense. That's an embarrassing question. You can answer it two ways. Either that the middle one is the exodus moment in John's Gospel, where Jesus, remember when he's walking on the water in chapter 6, and the disciples are shocked with seeing him, they're scared of him, and the water's been rising and so on, and they're glad to take him into the boat. He says, it is I, do not be afraid. What he really says is, I am. He says, ego e me, do not be afraid. And then, all of a sudden, they're at the shore to which they're going. So that's where the center is, okay? So what Ellis says is that that is the exodus moment in John's Gospel, which somehow renders symbolically the structure of the whole Gospel, the meaning of the whole Gospel. This Jesus bringing his people across the sea, as it were,


to something else, to another sphere. Now, that's pretty plausible, even though there are lots of problems with it. But if you take it too far, if you take it down and ask... Because this has its own liturgical structure, but it's not like these. This has an A, a B, and a C, and a D, but I don't think... Yes, but the center of that is not so impressive. And the wind was blowing and the sea was rising. Can that be the message of the whole Gospel? Unfortunately, the key there, where Jesus says, I am, is a little off-center in that one. Because he goes on, he takes almost everything and analyzes it. But he's got 21 sequences, as he calls them. So, C is a part and also a sequence. Each of these other four parts breaks down into five sequences, and each of the sequences is effectively theatrical. The trouble with that is, if you think of John composing the Gospel in that way,


it's like he was tied hand and foot with this game, you see? And he didn't have freedom enough, really, to put anything into it, it would seem. You can be tied down by narrative, by just chronology, by history, the way things happened, or you can be tied down by a formal structure that you compose on yourself. So, if you take that too rigidly, it would seem to paralyze the theological, what would you call it, the life of the Gospel, John's ability to put anything into it. We'll see, we'll test it a little bit as we go along. Because it's a fascinating thing. And it also can give you a system of centers, which is very fascinating. But I think that the centers that Delos comes up with are not the most convincing. You can do this in another way, you can do a geometry of that, for instance, in this form. The same old form, right? One. How do you do this in C? Oh, yeah. A, A5. B, B5.


And C, right? You can do it that way, and you get some very interesting results if you do it. I'll show you that later on. Oh, it's the one book that's been fairly well authenticated as far as classic structures goes, is Deuteronomy. It's interesting that John and Deuteronomy have close affinity in thematic. That's an interesting thing. Deuteronomy, the classic structure of Deuteronomy was really discovered only about ten years ago. It really began to be explored a lot. It breaks down even more intensely than that, almost like photographs. I'll have to look at that again. It's like the breaking of a mirror. Because every hole... It's a hologram. It's a hologram. Yeah, right. Every piece contains a hole, kind of like that. And trying to recover it precisely as poetry. So that Dylan Thomas is saying is very interesting, that one. The other thing, my question, I haven't read it, I was just adjunct to Gunn.


How does the notion of the hour fit in? Because at least the way I studied John, my teacher was mainly following Ra, but I think he brought in some other material. This notion of the whole gospel, this development of the hour, my hour has not come, my hour has not come. But then the hour has come. I don't think he does it adequately, to tell you the truth. The hour, for him, is part five, which is this part here. No, let me see, no, it's this part here. Could we start from there? So the hour is this part here, which goes all the way from 12, chapter 12, through chapter 21 for him. So the hour is part... This is my work. This is the way that he draws it. One, two, four, five. And here's your little three, which is only five verses. See, that's John 16, 16 to 21, and the C crossing.


And this is the Book of Glories in the French language, okay, here. This is interesting because it's a portion which is enclosed by the testimony of John the Baptist. John the Baptist, who begins the Gospel of John, remember, except for the prologue. And then in chapter four, John the Gospel speaks up again, or chapter three. Towards the end, John the Baptist makes another testimony. It seems a little out of place. But that makes an inclusion here, which kind of frames this first part. So there are a lot of interesting things there. We'll go into that a little more thoroughly later when we do the structure, because now we should do the prologue. But we'll find that we get into chiasm in the prologue, too. And the prologue is very convincing. The other one, besides Deuteronomy, I didn't know about Deuteronomy, but I saw a paper where somebody has found a very detailed chiastic structure in Mark. Now, that's interesting because there are so many resemblances between Mark and John, in spite of their Christological contrast, you know. I was trying to see if John maybe takes some of that chiasm of Mark, you know,


and at times I couldn't identify it, couldn't find it. That's an article we have in Biblical Theology Books. I've seen a critique from novelists on this basis, that the son turned out to be the transfiguration of Mark, which doesn't fit with the theological... Unless he deliberately... It was ironic. Okay, unless that's another level which he's concealed, but intends to be revealed by the structure, rather than being revealed explicitly, you know. I don't know. See, like the way the author presented it, he didn't sound like the Gospel is trying to prove that Jesus is the son of God, but actually what he's trying to do is trying to correct It isn't like addressed to non-believers, it's addressed to people who are very firmly convinced that Jesus is the son of God, and trying to put it into perspective. Yeah, so it's very peculiar that... I don't see it here. You'd have to read the article and judge, you know. But that one is fantastic, because what he does is he counts the words, and he finds the central word in Mark's Gospel, and he says, this is it.


The central word for him turns out to be, it seems to me, the central phrase is, this is my son. Now, that's pretty strong. If you find the center of gravity like that, it's pretty convincing, you know. But you've got to judge it yourself. I thought I had that with me, but... Maybe the Holy Spirit is something you're doing, you're figuring these things out without the other people being too concerned about... I don't know, but it's something like that kind of mathematical thing. I started to do a little bit of the same thing with John. Father David, very conveniently, has that fantastic book where all the words are actually counted. So with a little bit of arithmetic you can figure out where the center is in John. For me, so far it's come out in John 10, something about the shepherd. But the trouble there is you don't know whether to keep the prologue, you see, or to exclude it from that. And chapter 21 and that part of chapter 8, you don't know whether to exclude them or include them, so it gets a little complicated. Numbering is a very tricky thing when you start with something common. It's much more convincing when you see actually the whole phrases and themes being reflected.


That's right. Although sometimes in the old days they seemed to have done that, that's the thing. They seemed to have put it in there sometimes, so if they did then you can fish it out. But in itself it's not a very impressive kind of research. Okay. There we have two alternative structures for John's Gospel. Now, today we wanted to talk about the prologue, and that's a long story. Here's my exhibit, Exhibit A. This is one of the plaques that used to be used for celebrating Mass, remember? This is the last Gospel in Latin. Now, you recollect that the prologue of the Gospel of John used to be read at the end of every Roman Catholic Mass. That's the reverence which was paid to it, as if it were the final word of theology, as if there were nothing further to be said. It was revered in that way. But this one is in Latin. And it is the basis of the mainstream Christology in our tradition,


and perhaps excessively so, because it's been too high a Christology. Not too high, but it's been imbalanced. It's been uncompensated or unbalanced by an ascending Christology, a really thoroughly incarnational, existential Christology. Nevertheless, that's the way it's been, and it's a magnificent Christology in itself. It's also the basis of the Christian mystical tradition, insofar as that basis itself runs in the Scripture. This relation with the Word. Remember Origen, remember Gregory of Nyssa, remember St. Bernard of Dalmas on the Song of Songs? It's always a question of the soul and the Word, or the human person as the bride, and the Word as the bridegroom, right up to John on the cross. And then you don't see so much of it, as if that had completed itself in a way. Let me read something from Abhishek Tananda, just to kind of broaden this, and then we'll go into it in a more detailed way. This is from the Hindu-Christian Meeting Point,


a chapter called the Joannine Upanishads. In the Joannine prologue we have a truly Christian parallel to the soundings or probes into the mystery of being which we found in the Upanishads. Tradition has singled out certain fundamental identifications, the Mahavakya, or great utterances. These supreme Upanishads epitomize Vedantic teaching in a particularly striking way. So you find the heart, as it were, in the Upanishadic Hindu tradition, in these few sayings. The identification of Atman and Brahman, of I and Brahman, of that and thou. These sum up authentically the essence of the Upanishadic experience. Now you find the same kind of thing in the prologue of John, and particularly in the beginning of the prologue, that is, in the beginning was the Word, the Word was God, the Word was God, the Word has become flesh. And probably also this implication of the pouring out. Those correspondences and interrelationships between the different levels of existence, those of the physical elements of man's psychic or mental powers, and of the Atman, in which the ancient thinkers of India took such delight.


You find the same thing in John's prologue. And in a few other sayings in the New Testament, particularly the I am sayings in John, but also some sayings in St. Paul. Just by way of illustration. It's the Hindu-Christian meeting point, and it's chapter 6, the Johannine Upanishads, starting with page 77. I think we have this in the library, we do. It's the notion of the Word, the Logos, that does this. It gives a kind of flash of unbounded radiance to Christian theology, to our vision of Christ. The prologue of John, the Supreme Christian Upanishad,


the words of Abhishek Tanana. Okay, let's read the prologue together and get a first feeling. I presume you've been doing this anyway already. And then we'll deal with some particular problems that come up in interpreting it. In the beginning was the Word. Now, you remember those words in the beginning, where they come from. Where does the title of the first book of the Bible come from? The book of Genesis, in the beginning. That's the first word. That's the first word, yes. So, John is deliberately picking up here from the first book of the Bible and from the creation account. As if there you have a phase, first phase, and now we're going to have another phase. And you'll find that at the beginning and at the end of John's Gospel, you have a lot of allusions, a lot of reflections of Genesis, and of the first chapters of Genesis. This is really fascinating, because there's a kind of creation focus


in the beginning and at the end, not only in the prologue here, but also in the first chapter, and then up into the second chapter, and then again in John 20. So, we'll look at that later on. Mark also begins with the word beginning, or something like that. Yeah, what does he say? The beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. That's Mark, okay? Yeah, the sense of the beginning there has that echo. He has a different sense of the meaning of the beginning there. It's a more constricted sense, okay? And John is making it metaphysical here, deliberately. Very often it's beginning to seem to me as if John put Mark in front of him and was deliberately kind of playing the overtones, or giving another significance to what Mark has said. We're going to find this later on with respect to John the Baptist. Otherwise, the beginning of the two Gospels contrasts very sharply,


except for one thing, one other thing here. John the Baptizer appeared, okay? So, Mark begins with John the Baptist, and we're going to find John the Baptist appearing very soon in John. In fact, he intrudes, he sticks his head in before the prologue is over, and then he picks it up soon after, in verse 19. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Well, what about this Word in the beginning? Do you remember back in Genesis? And God said, God said, let there be light. God said, and it was. God said, and it was. God said. Okay, so the creation itself was through God speaking. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. Now, that expression, with God, is variously translated. They try to make it more sensitive sometimes. It's prostantean, which means towards as well as with, but it's hard to translate it in English briefly. It signifies a relationship which goes beyond just the with, a kind of juxtaposition. And the Word was God. Now, here, also there's something in Greek which doesn't come to any English.


It doesn't say the Word was God in the same sense that it's without the article. So, it means as if the Word were of the nature of God, the Word were also on the level of God, but not the Word is the unique God. It's not specified in the same way. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him. Without him was made nothing that was made. So here, once again, is Genesis, okay? Because it's the Word's role in creation. But here the Word has become something separate, it seems, something distinct. Not as in Genesis, where the Word is merely spoken by God and doesn't have any individuality. Im-im was life, and the life was the light of men. You get some problems on punctuation here which don't appear in the English. I've got the RSV in front of me, and you may have something else before you. Let me know if you come up with a different sense as we're going through this, and then we'll talk about it. Because, for instance, in verse 3, you can translate that two ways depending on where you put the period.


And there's a variation in the different manuscripts. So, you can say... Do you have the Greek text? Yeah, I have it here. It's only the Mark text, but... In fact, I might ask you to read it. Verse 3 and 4 can go like this, that all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. Or, all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made, period. That which was made was life in him. You see, if you attach that to the next line. Now, most of the translations have made the first option, and it seems to be better, it seems to be preferred.


That's typical of the little questions that are buried in here, we don't notice in the translation. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. All of that with very deep resonances. But as soon as you start to ask questions, then you have a hedge of difficulties here, as to when that light is shining. Is it in the Jesus who has come in the flesh? At another time, is it in creation always? Is it in the wisdom or the Torah of the Old Testament, or what? Exegetes have various opinions on that. But mostly, the light which shines in the darkness, I think, is the permanent presence of the light in the world, in creation, definitely before the incarnation. Now we have what seems to be an intrusion, an interruption. There was a man sent from God whose name was John. The first five verses seem to be very integral, and to have a poetic character to them. And now we have this, which comes across as prose, comes across as prose narrative, a historical kind of thing.


There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came for testimony to bear witness to the light that all might believe through him. Now here we are definitely in the era of the incarnation, aren't we? So if verse 5 is talking about something that has always been since the creation, the light shining in the world, verse 6 has definitely brought us into the time of Jesus, the time of the incarnation, because John is preceding him immediately. He came for testimony to bear witness to the light that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to bear witness to the light. Now, some people explain that, that John was writing to correct certain disciples of John the Baptist who thought that John the Baptist really was the light, that he really was the Messiah or the Prophet. You remember that Samaritan influence we were talking about earlier? Remember the Samaritans said that Moses was the light. So if the disciples of John the Baptist connected John with Moses, for instance, they might have applied that to him. And somehow put Jesus in the shade in that way.


But John is saying, no, he's not the light. Remember later in the Gospel, Jesus will say, John was a lamp, remember? He was burning and shining, and he rejoiced for a while in his light. But then Jesus says, I am the light of the world. So the lamp is one thing, the light is something else. And the lamp only shines by virtue of the light. He was not the light, but came to bear witness to the light. The true light that enlightens every man, this is RSV, was coming into the world. Now here you've got another exegetical doubt. Do you translate this, the true light that enlightens everyone, the light that's coming into the world, or the true light, the true light enlightens every man who comes into the world. That's how the old Latin Vulgate has it. That's how this plaque has it. erat lux vera quae illuminat omnim hominem venientem in hum mundum


It illuminates every man who comes into this world. Well, most of the agencies today say no. That it should be, it's the light that comes into the world. And the reason for that is largely, besides I suppose the manuscript tradition itself, that Jesus is continually speaking of himself as the light that comes into the world, the one who comes into the world, but he doesn't speak of men coming into the world. So he is the one who comes into the world. Here's something else I'd like to point out. There's a kind of a centering language throughout the Gospel of John which is fascinating, which we'll get back to in different ways. And you find it already in the prologue. In the prologue it appears in the form of something being in the world. And you think of something being in the middle of the world. You think of something like the light being in the middle of the world. Jesus becoming incarnate, taking up his tabernacle in the middle of the world, dwelling in the middle, in the center. A centering language. It's subtle here. It becomes much more obvious later on. And whenever we talk about geography in John you can suspect that something is being said there also about motion with relation to the center. Jerusalem, the temple, and so on.


And remember that at the end of the prologue we've got, literally, no one has ever seen God. The only son who is in the bosom of the Father, who is somehow centered in the Father. Now that's not the obvious meaning of those words. You'll find Brown's translation and the New American Bible translate the only son who is at the side of the Father. Because in common parlance at that time it meant either someone, for instance, at a banquet who is close to, next to. John was supposed to have been leaning against the bosom of Jesus, remember, against the side of Jesus at the banquet. Or it means in the affection, in Abraham's bosom, remember? It certainly doesn't literally mean that somebody is inside Abraham's thorax. It means that it dwells in his affection, dwells in his aura, somehow. And yet, I think in John there's another meaning. I think this centering sense is certainly in John. You can confirm that as we go on.


But remember at the end also, the last thing that happens in chapter 20, the resurrection appearances, is Thomas looking at Jesus' open side. Thomas looking at the body of Christ which has been opened somehow so that its interior is made accessible. My Lord and my God. So interiority and centering kind of merge with one another but they're not exactly the same thing. Okay, he was in the world and the world was made through him and yet the world knew him not. Now you've got exegetes that put even this before the incarnation, okay? Who will say that this is the light which has dwelt in the world. Say in the Torah of the Old Testament, in the wisdom of the Old Testament, in the teaching of the prophets, before Jesus came. And it's pretty hard to sustain if you look at it objectively. He came to his own home and his own people received him not. See, that can always be said of wisdom, can't it? It can always be said of the people who knew the word of God in the Old Testament but the word kept coming and they didn't receive him. But the prophets too, that happened, okay? So you can argue that way but taken as a whole,


the structure really doesn't support it much. To all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God. Now, you can only say that of the incarnation. To become a child of God in the sense that John means it, the strong sense that John in the New Testament intended, cannot be said before the coming of Jesus, before the incarnation. So, who were born, not of blood nor of the flesh nor of the will of man but of God. Now here's another question, textual question. You can read that he gave power to become children of God. He who was born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man but of God. And very often in the Catholic tradition, the exegetes have read it that way, as a further fortification, as it were, of the divine birth of Jesus, okay? For instance, of the virgin birth. A dogmatic affirmation. However, it seems that it's to be translated like this because actually the Greek word seems to go either way,


that particular pronoun. It's who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man but of God. And now here we have the line which has usually been enshrined as the center and the key of the prologue. And the word became flesh and dwelt among us, okay? The incarnation. That's where that notion of incarnation comes from. So this is really a keystone of our theological thinking about Christ. As if you have a straight line between the first line and the beginning was the word and the word was with God, the word above, the word with God, the word in the bosom of the Father, and then the word which becomes flesh. So this axis comes down right into our world and here is the word made flesh. And dwelt among us full of grace and truth. Now, you're going to find different translations of grace and truth. I think... How does Brown do it? He does love and... enduring love, enduring love. And frequently they'll do that nowadays because what they do is they trace it back to the Old Testament pair of Chesed and...


What's the other one? Emet. Emet. Which flatly and literally are love and truth but really are the merciful, compassionate, covenant love of God and the fidelity of God, okay? Now, that's a very strong theological pair in the Old Testament and so it's persuasive that that lies behind John's choice of these two words, charis and aletheia, grace and truth. However, the RSV has kept this. And there's something else in grace and truth which is not in those two expressions, which is not in love and... enduring love, for instance. Once again, there's a kind of... What would you call it? There's a weakening on the level of depth in the direction of depth when you translate it to simply enduring love. And there's the exclusion of a possibility which John may have intended by the choice of these two words. So I think that we continue to have to go back to the words which John has chosen and allow them to express their full meaning


rather than the limited meaning you may get in a given translation. Now, the more contemporary translations usually try to make sense out of it, okay? And sometimes at the expense of the fullness of the original. I'm not arguing so much for another translation like the RSV, as for the fullness of the original compared with the partial communication in a translation. So it's good to look at more than one translation sometimes. And regard to the part just before the verb was made flesh. Yes. I've heard that in two distinct, opposite or different ways that really makes a lot of difference in terms of the whole understanding of the prologue, for me at least. Yes. And that is, one way it was interpreted was that those who are born not of the public elegance of the flesh nor of the will of man... Okay, born not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. Three negations and an affirmation. Exactly. And the way I've had it interpreted


is some say that refers to us, that we are just... Yes, yes. ...because of what Christ did for us. We are no longer ordinary, I mean, in that... That's right. ...in that particular sense we've been raised to it more by it. That's right. And others say this has to do with Christ. That's right. That he's the one that was. Now, how do we understand that? Okay, the majority... I think the preference... Now, Schneider's, for instance, opts for the second, the plural. And I think most of the good exegetes do now. For the... Although not everybody. Schneider's opts for which one? The plural. That is, we are born not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. This turns out to be quite important as far as the structure of the prologue, as we're going to see, and the key, the theological center of the prologue, okay? Because we're going to run into this question, where is the center of the prologue? Presence, if it's a key, and I'll try to demonstrate that. Is the center in the Christology, and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, or is the center rather in, to all who received him, who believed in his name,


he gave power to become children of God? Does the center turn around Jesus simply, or does the center turn around what happens to those who believe in him? Okay? Now, it turns out with a chiasm that it's in the second that the center falls upon to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God. That transformation through faith, rather than the simple fact of the incarnation, which has usually been seen as the key to the prologue, or the heart of the prologue, let me put it that way, which is not to set that aside, because that's an extremely important thing, but it looks like John's really pointing to that and then something. Okay? The incarnation and then its effect in us. And then the fact that we're brought into the incarnation by becoming children of God. Yes, I'm going to try to show that afterwards. I have a question.


Just simply that, as you're just a primary center, you lose sense of the death and resurrection of Jesus, almost kind of like an afterthought. Yes. You lose sense of that as being the critical thing. In other words, focusing, that was one of the complaints about classical theologians, they focus so much on the incarnation that the death and resurrection are kind of like an appendix, or early chapter, simply. It's a real, it's a big risk in a Johannine theology. So, if we find a center to what you're saying, how do we become children of God? Actually, the Gospel of John is very coherent, very unified, but if we kind of extract simply that, from verse 14, as our thing like the term, somehow, making death and resurrection of Jesus really significant. That's right. The other way, we become children of God by the whole,


by the sending of the Spirit, you see, by giving the Spirit, that's very important, coming out of the dead, the whole hour of glory, keeping things out of the Spirit, and so on. So, it's very coherent. Yes, and only through his death. And then, somehow, if we have a center here, which is that those who believe in him have the power to become children of God, I think the theological center of the narrative is the hour of Jesus, which is his death and his resurrection. There's no doubt about it, because John puts such emphasis on it. No matter where you end up with a kind of physical, quantitative, or structural center, the real center is in the hour. It's unmistakable. That's the death of Jesus. Which translation does that injustice? It wasn't just the interpretation, it was the translation. It was, but to all who received and believed in his name, he gave power for them to become children of God. Yes, that's it. Then, the next sentence is where the other translations do really an injustice. They speak of Christ, then, who was born not of blood, or the blood of Christ.


Many translated it that way in the old days, as a Christological affirmation. There was probably a hidden, dogmatic, apologetic, polemic motive. Let me see. I've got some Latin here. Well, let's see. It's right on our... No, it's nati sunt. It's nati sunt in this Latin. And this is the Bulgarian, okay? So, that's the plural. And here... It's nati sunt also here in the... No, but he doesn't even know exactly. She's reading from the notes. Some of the real early commentaries took it that way. Yeah, yeah. Now, I won't go into how they explain not from blood, nor the will of flesh,


nor the will of man. It gets kind of intricate. Somebody found a ritual significance for not ex sanguinibus. Something about ritual purification and so on, but I don't think... Later on, John, a very striking thing, it's a very dramatic thing, the flesh, I think, is flesh. Yeah, yeah. That's right. Yeah. That's right. It's this very beginning. Remember the first letter of John. You're born of God, and therefore you're just on another level. Yeah. That's right. Now, there's kind of a dialectic here, because, note, the theological weight of flesh when the word became flesh. Nevertheless, John will say, Jesus will say, the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to are very true. Yeah, that's right. That's right. Yeah.


Paiologos sarxagenesin. Yeah, that's right. Deliberate. There's terrific power and kind of a literary power in John. And very often it's in the compression, the juxtaposition, very simple one-syllable words. John's got a whole bunch of one-syllable words that can be understood by anybody, and you have terrific depth to them. And when they're translated, often they're paraphrased, or they're strung out, or in some way they get made bland and they lose their power. Okay. Where were we? Let's see. And we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father. Here there's another problem, the word monogenes. Okay, only, what's been translated here, only Son, and what you find in verse 18 as the only Son who is in the bosom of the Father. They both come from the word monogenes, only with the second one there's also the word theos. So in verse 18, what it really says is the only God, which is a very shocking reading,


but that's what the text says, evidently. That's what they come up with in the manuscripts. No one has ever... That's verse 18. I always have to keep it a little bit in parenthesis myself because it's hard for me to accept it as incontinuity with what John is saying. God instead of Son. In verse 18? Verse 18. No one has ever seen God, the only God who is in the bosom of the Father. He has made him known. That's, yeah, it's a surprising reading, even though it's testified evidently by most of the manuscripts. That's the one that Schneider's buys, by the way. Really? Yeah. So that overcomes to the Jewish person, the person of faith, but the bottom line is God. Yeah, yeah. The one from God. But here in the Greek text, is that what you have? Is that, you know, that's the preferred reading? It'll vary from addition to...


It doesn't say anything about variance. No footnote? Yeah, that's what I have in my Merck text, too. See, the Latin here, the Latin translation barked at this because the Greek has monogenes theos buan eston monogenes theos That's an old... Yeah, it's only twenty, thirty years old. I've got the other one in my place. No, they still, they still... Yeah, that's the preferred reading. But the Latin has... Sure it is, yeah, it's shocking. And it's hard to fit in, it's hard to fit in with the whole... I don't want to insist on it too much, even though they say it's the preferred reading because it doesn't fit well with the rest of... I don't know. I'll look it up later. Barrett's good. I'll check that later. Now, that's one place


where monogenes is found, okay, and the other is up in 1.14, verse 14, which is usually translated the only son, sometimes the only begotten son. Now, evidently monogenes has nothing to do with begottenness. It just means only, unique. And the word... The word son isn't there in verse 14. So, monogenes parapatros, so the only one, the only from the son, the unique from the father, that is. Okay. I said that, remember that Winkler article on the Syriac thing, the Iliad of Syriac, it's the first word for monk in early Syriac, came from this kind of Syriac thing, the Iliad, which means the only one, the one, or it could mean the unified one, very interesting. That's where the word


for monk came from. Now, there again you have a kind of centering language in John, bear with me for a moment, but when you talk about the only one, you're talking about the, you're establishing a center, okay, among all of the beings, all of the children, all of whatever, the only one is the center, okay, we're going to find the same thing happening as we go on, especially when Jesus speaks of himself in terms of I am. In the passage in Genesis 22, where Abraham offers Isaac, Isaac is referred to as the only son, but he has, we have a way to be told that he has Archimedes male at that time, so... That's interesting, yeah. ...he's the only son. It means that he's the one through whom everything passes, isn't he? Well, Isaac is the only real son, in that sense, because the other one was not by his wife, but by a concubine. Yeah, but it says


your son, your only one. Yeah, but he's the only legal son, he's the only one, he's the only real one. If Abraham was good, then in that sense, that he's only... Yes. ...not as if there were no others, but he's the only Yeah, yeah. Ishmael may already have disappeared by then, I don't remember. Ishmael, of course, has already disappeared by then, hasn't he? Because, remember, he was... Abraham is told that he... No, he was told... When he was a baby, huh? No, Abraham was told when he was a baby. But it must have happened earlier, though, because, remember, there were two babies playing together, there were two kids playing together. Anyhow. Yeah, I don't remember. Where are we? Any other questions about the prologue? About the chronology here. It doesn't seem advisable to take the prologue too chronologically, that is, to expect there to be an accurate time sequence as you move through it, all right? There may be a slight motion back and forth, and as we consider the chiastic structure, we'll see why.


Remember those two big interruptions you have about John the Baptist, pretty striking, and we're really puzzled to find why it's so important Why are they in there? They don't seem to belong. That's verses 6 through 8, and verse 15. Now, it would be interesting to say more about the terms that John is using here. Towards the end of the prologue, the glory, it's an extremely important term in John, and it in some way is the issue, or that towards which the gospel of John moves. Remember that Brown labeled the second half of John's gospel the book of glory. Remember the prayer of Jesus. Remember the marriage at Cana. That Jesus here performed his first sign and manifested his glory, and his disciples believed in him. It's as if the whole issue of faith is to see the glory of God in Jesus, and it's as if the whole reason for Jesus' life is to come into his glory, which is something which involves all of us,


okay, which in some way involves our believing and our own being made children of God, our own being glorified. So that's why it's so connected to us here in the prologue. We have beheld his glory, glory as of the only one from the Father. What is the glory? Well, there's a long history of that notion of glory in the Old Testament. Let me say just two or three things about it, and then I'll refer you to the dictionary of biblical theology, something like that, where you'll find a good article on it. It is the presence of God as it is manifest, as it is visible, basically. It's a presence of God. It's God outside God, in a sense. And it's usually God dwelling in a certain place and then manifest as dwelling in that place. Sometimes it's taken in a very materialistic sense in the Old Testament. So the glory of God would be a radiance, a light, a shining on Moses' face,


a shining around the tabernacle or at Mount Sinai or in the temple. You'd hear in Kings or Chronicles that the glory of God dwelt in the temple. Now that's the presence of God, and then it'll switch to the visible presence of God. When you come into the New Testament, it takes another theological sense, which is kind of precise in a way. And it's connected with Jesus. So that fairly consistently you see the glory of God as being the identification mark of Jesus as being the Son of God, as being the Messiah, as being the only one. For instance, when St. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4 that we have seen the light of the glory of God shining upon the face of Christ Jesus. Not only that, but he connects it with Genesis and with the one who said let light shine out of darkness as shown in our hearts


so that we have seen the light of the glory of God on the face of Christ Jesus. Now that for him is the essential experience of Christ somehow. That identification of Jesus with the glory of God. Therefore with the temple, with the whole Old Testament, but it's also an experience. It's not just a kind of theological journey. What's that? Jesus says, just before the crucifixion, he says now is the time to be glorified. That's right. That's just before. That's right. When we look to ask, the very opposite of glory. Yeah, that's in John. The same thing happens when Judas goes out, it's night, now is the Son of Man glorified. The same thing happens with the cross because he says the Son of Man must be lifted up, must be exalted, and that's his glorification and his crucifixion at the same time. So in John... I know you didn't find it in Mark. Mark was in a very different mood. Yeah. I was just going to say, this is John's way of speaking about the kingdom of God in Mark. Glory and kingdom are almost practically interchangeable because the kingdom


in Mark means the great power of God manifest. That's what it means. And the manifestation aspect of it. Okay. The glory of God has the different sense, I think, the different nuance of being sensibly or sensually or visibly, perceptively, experientially manifested rather than manifest in an indirect way, let's say, through love. But even there, like the miracles of Jesus manifest the glory of Jesus. Okay. The miracle of Cana manifests the glory of God in Jesus, manifests his glory. So really, for John, we've got to extract the meaning of glory from the Gospel of John itself. And we'll try to do that as we go along, especially toward the end. The richest places for the theology of glory in John are chapter 17. Mostly chapter 17, I think. The whole prayer of Jesus is saturated with that notion of the glory. See, that's what he's praying for. But his glory is a lot more than just his glorification. It essentially involves us. But see, it's very easy


to understand the glory in the other course and in the Transfiguration and in, you know, that one instance of the Repentance and the illumination of Christ That's right. That's the strength of John's Gospel because it could be a kind of bright-side Christianity, but it's not at all because that cross is right in the middle of it and the glory of it is somehow inextricably identified with the cross, which is still very difficult. I mean, to think about the exaltation of Jesus in that sense, it's always a puzzle to me. It's identified, but the meaning is made clear after he rose from the dead and said, you know, why are you sad? Didn't you know he had to suffer in order to... Right. Now, that's in Luke now, okay? Oh, that's in Luke. Yeah. Okay. That's the M.A.S. episode. But I was thinking, doesn't John give the same aspect... When he talks to Magdalene, it's the same. They've been victorious. Oh, yeah, sure. Not being... This is why he's the risen Lord.


Yeah, sure. The Resurrection narrations in all the Gospels are that way. That is, the glory is triumphant over the death. There's no doubt about it. There's no room for sadness after that. Yeah, that's why he's wanting us to see it from the point of view of spirit, rather than flesh, which abhors suffering. Right. Which goes against the whole grain. But it's like whatever it is that gives the impetus for the kind of acceptance and grace... Yeah. See, the glory... Excuse me. The glory is not given to us like in John, so that we'll have an alternative to suffering. It's given to us so that we'll be able to go through the suffering with the strength that we get from that contact with the glory. And that's why he puts the two together. Yes, that's the whole point, that it isn't through suffering to glory, but that in the suffering is the glory. At the very point where the synoptic says, will you now re-establish the kingdom? Will you now establish the kingdom? Yes, yes. And then he says, now is my hour, my hour has come. Now the Son of God


will be glorified. And so it is in the suffering and the light shines in the darkness, not in spite of the darkness or against the darkness, but the very darkness inside. That's right. But then afterwards there is another step when the light simply pushes the darkness away when the glory is fully revealed. Does he speak about that? It's implicit in the resurrection narrative, but then the disciples still have to go through the same journey. They still have to go through their own suffering and death. But I think it doesn't come out as a matter of fact in John, it comes out more before his death than it does afterwards. In John, there's a stronger affirmation of the glory before his death and resurrection than there is afterwards in the resurrection narratives. I think maybe we should project it in there, which would be very helpful. This thing that the light shines in the darkness is maintained throughout. Oh yeah, sure. Now, this whole thing about John's eschatology, John's eschatology


is a realized eschatology, so almost everything is found in this present life rather than in some future. John doesn't talk about the second coming at all, hardly, except in John 21. So that's another thing we could get to later. When we say that the light shines in the darkness, that doesn't mean the darkness is the light. No, not at all. That would be dangerous. And in John, certainly not in John. Somebody else might say that, but John wouldn't say it because for him darkness is disbelief, it's evil, it's sin, and it's death. And that there's no light without darkness. I mean, you know, there's a whole question of darkness and a whole question of evil. It seems to me it's a condition which is here, it's an existential reality. But it isn't something that we're meant to focus on as the way only. I mean, that we have to go through this or be in it in order to... I mean, to me there's a dangerous emphasis... For John, it would seem that the essential


move, the essential option is to focus on the light and keep focused on the light. Not to pay all that attention to the dark. To focus on Jesus, focus on the word because that's the light. And go through the darkness with him, but never letting your attention be seduced by the darkness. Exactly, that's what I mean. I mean, if you come through the wall in the darkness then you... Whereas a lot of Christianity, you see, sometimes Christianity has evolved a theology of suffering which can become perverse. It can damage people because it turns what is really not a good into the good and then fosters a kind of sick way of operating with oneself. It fosters... Because any time that we're persuaded to dislike life or dislike what is good somebody's out to get us, somebody's damaging us. Teresa, you had something? I see that the recent example of Matthew the young godly whom his martyrdom


was just so shining like a bright light that his guardian could stand and look at him. This was the glory of God. And for me the glory of God is precisely the miracle of love. To love in spite of the darkness. That's right, that's right. Just as it was for Jesus. Okay, the glory of God would manifest in Jesus at his crucifixion when he went through it the way that he went through it. As far as in human life the possibility of the manifestation of the glory of God, we have to put that I think above the transfiguration in a way. And yet there's another moment after it which is the moment of the radiance of the glory when God is all in all. When the darkness somehow doesn't count anymore. When the darkness is not an opposition to be wrestled with anymore. It just isn't there. It's been put into its place. There are two moments. I'd better get on to the chiastic structure of the prologue, okay, and see if you buy it or not.


Actually, this has been proposed by a number of people. Bois Mard seems to be the first one in recent times. He wrote this beautiful little book, The Prologue of John. Do any of you know that book? Who is it? Bois Mard. It's translated from the French, of course. But we've had this for 25 years or so. Remember this little book? And he's basically come up with the same thing that the contemporary chiastic people have. That is, the most sophisticated formal exegesis of the prologue comes up with the same structure that Bois Mard came up with. I don't know if he's that good on the rest of the Gospel. He's written a lot of it and then translated it into English. This is, by golly, this is 1956. It's a beautiful little book, St. John's Prologue, giving a lot of the Old Testament background and with a kind of sense of theological density. He's not just skating on the surface. Okay. Schneiders goes into this


and she tells us the authors who have done this. Bois Mard, Ellison, and Culpepper is the most recent, but I don't have his paper called The Pivot of John's Prologue. If I made another raid on Berkeley I'd be able to copy it. So we saw what chiasm is. And the big difference is with respect to the chiastic structure of the prologue orbit around the question of where the center is. Now, first of all, as I said before, there was a choice of do you put the center in verse 14 or do you put it somewhere between 10 and 13, inclusive. And the old option was usually for verse 14 because it's so Christologically strong. The word became flesh and dwelt among us. The chiastic option, however, is 10 to 13, and we'll see why. Now, if you take that Ellis section that you have, he's got a good sample in there. He'll orient us pretty well. That stack of notes from Ellis is the genius of John.


I think it starts on page 10. It's got introduction up at the top. And on the right-hand page, page 11, it's got the structure of the Gospel. Okay, go from there back to page... page 20 and 21. That's about the end of what you've got from Ellis, okay? Now, his chiastic structure for John is just about what the others come up with. The only difference would be a slight difference on the center. His is almost exactly the same as Bohart's. That's 30 years in between. It's more impressive if you do it graphically, but I don't have time to write all of those verses on the board, so... Now, he gives you


five parts, doesn't he? Bohart makes it a little more complicated, but he comes up with the same center. The center is verses 12 and 13. And, of course, between the two, one of them has a lot more theological weight than the other. Verse 12. So it goes like this. A B C B' A' And we'll expect to find parallels between the same letter, between A and A' between B and B'. C, standing by itself, we suspect that C will be the theological center of the whole thing. In other words, that the point over here, that everything else will rotate around it. So let's check that out and see if it works. A A In the beginning was the Word of God, and the Word was God,


and the Word was God. So we've got all the way from verse 1 to 8. Yeah. And he's got the John portion right in there. So... Now, you don't have to do it that way. It's possible. But if you compare that with A' now, you'll see the parallels, okay? The other way you can do it is to separate those John sections, make a separate section of them. Consequently, you've got more than just A, B, and C. You've got A, B, C, D at least. And I think maybe that's preferable. Compare A with A'. Now, when you compare them, you have to compare A' upside down, you see? In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Okay. No one has ever seen God, the only Son, the only God who was in the bosom of the Father. He had made Him known. That's a really good parallel. And it's as if we are finding this kind of movement


starting from the top, moving down, and then moving back up until we're on the same level. In the bosom of the Father, you see, or with God. That's strong. Then you've got John. Since he hasn't separated the John sections, 15 and 5 through 8, you've got John's witness coming right after there. You've got a section on life and light in the middle of one, and you've got a section on grace in the middle of the other. And then John's witness. And then let's compare B and B'. The true light that enlightens every man is coming into the world. He was in the world, the world was made through him, let the world know him not. And you've got an antithetical parallel in B'. The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth. Contrasted with the light, but also in continuity with the light. Because the Word and the light are the same. The reaction, the response is different. The world knew him not,


his own people received him not, we have beheld his glory as of the only Son from the Father. Yeah, that's right. That's right. And yet we've found that the Word became flesh is a little off-center. Just like the light coming into the world is a little off-center, the real center is here in 12 and 13. To all who received him or believed in his name he gave power to become children of God. And then the 13 is really just an addition to that, which doesn't get any deeper certainly. We're born out of blood and are the will of the flesh and the will of man. Yes. Yeah. That's really good. Now some others have refined it a good deal more. Let me give you... This is the one which Schneider prefers is Culpepper's. Where's page two?


Okay, Culpepper's is a little more sophisticated and I suspect it works a little better. He... I was going to write this one down so you have it in front of you since you already have those. He's got a much more, as we call it, complex and articulated scheme here. One and two parallel 18. So in the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was with God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, etc. Parallels. No one has ever seen God, the only Son who was in the bosom of the Father who was made from the earth. Now, three parallels 17. All things were made through Him. Without Him was not anything made that was made. For the law was given through Moses. Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. The creation first


and then the law. But both coming through Jesus Christ. One coming through the Word through the light, really the Word. The other coming through grace and truth coming through Jesus Christ. And in the middle the law from Moses. And yet there is a parallel. It's this mediation. It's the through that is the key there to the parallel. All things were made through Him. Without Him was not anything made that was made. For the law was given through Moses. Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. If you analyze that there is a very interesting theology implicit there between creation, law, and then the final phase of grace and truth in Jesus Christ. Spirit. Yeah. Spirit at the same level. Okay. Four parallels. Four and five go with sixteen. So, in Him was life


and the life was the light of man. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. And from His fullness have we all received grace upon grace. That struck me before too that connection between grace flowing upon grace. It's translated too as love flowing from love. Yeah, that's I think Brown does that. And once again grace is a more literal translation of John's word which is charis. Very much to do with light. Oh yes. I think there is a kind of overlapping between light, glory, and grace. Okay. And fullness. Because if you ask what is this fullness anyway? Is it the fullness of grace? What is it? What is it referred to? From His fullness. It's a little hard to be sure. But it certainly refers to grace. Can you also put it in a line with glory?


Okay, let me do that one again. Four and five and sixteen. Let's just test the parallel. In Him was life and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness. The darkness has not overcome it. There we have life and light and darkness. And in sixteen we have the fullness. Grace upon grace. That's not terribly convincing. Not terribly convincing. I don't know. It depends on how much you do with charis. And as full amplified meaning. I think that's the point. I think the problem with the word grace is perhaps the opposite of the problem perhaps in general. Even in a Christian theological interpretation of grace. We're losing when we're thinking of this, we're losing the whole covenant notion. The covenant


relationship between Israel and God. Yeah. Probably something He just translated it with the word love not enduring love here of course. And for us that's a pretty ambiguous word. Yeah. Let's go on to the next one. Linguistically what's the life and the light of men and the light of women. There you have fullness. You always use grace upon grace. So linguistically then this is a repetition situation. Completely formal. Rather than life and grace Well if you move up a little bit to the next verse in continuity which is verse 14 we have beheld His glory as of the only Son from the Father. Now if you relate that to 16 from His fullness have we already seen grace upon grace relate the fullness to the glory and not to the light. In other words


grace and light are very closely associated. So there is really a kind of Now next is 6 to 8 and 15. Now this is beautiful because it takes care of the John the Baptist passages. He's got them actually Ellis does it too but he doesn't do it so clearly because he leaves it in one big section. Culpeper separates them out and they balance one another perfectly. You still have to explain why they're there. But at least they balance one another. Now Ellis puts them in one big section. He had everything down to verse 8 in one block. Remember? There's 8 and then 6 to 8. So it's just that he didn't differentiate. But the parallel is still there. 6 to 8 and 15. Alright. Then 9 to 10 and 14. 9,


the true light. That's the same that Ellis did. Precisely. The true light that enlightens every man who's coming into the world. He was in the world, the world made him and the world made him not. Now this is the manifestation and the rejection. And in 14 we have the manifestation, the presence and not so much the acceptance but simply the perception. It doesn't say that we believe. It says we've seen his glory. But actually to behold the glory is already somehow to have faith. You can't behold the glory just on the level of your eyes, on the level of physical perception, on the level of reason. There's got to be faith there. So to say behold the glory implies much more than just the vision of the eyes or just the empirical evidence. Now we


come to the center, don't we? We've got any more? No, 11 and 13. I'm surprised that they all follow the the verses as we have them here because these verses are very late. There is a lot in this verse 14 that could be taken apart. Ah, you're right. Let's see now. I think the verses may be right, the separation of the verses, the numbering of the verses that we have there, but grammatically they are sentences. But I see, I see. And I think they've cut it up pretty much as they like here. I don't think, in other words, what they've done is they've done a numbering of the verses certainly. But grammatically it follows the numbering of the verses. Well, you can use it because Because they're sentences. Because they're sentences. It's a grammatical basis rather than an arbitrary thing. Yeah, the chapters and verses, you


don't want to do too much exegesis with chapters and verses, because they come from 1224, of course. Stephen liked that. And then he insults them by saying it's a poor job. Somebody said he was doing it on a wise guy. Now we get to 11 and 13. He came to his own home and his own people received him next to And 13, who were born out of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor the will of them but of God. Well, what do you think of that? Not so hot, huh? There is 11 and 13 don't seem that parallel to me. They are parallel antithetically in the sense of the positive and the negative reaction, but otherwise. So you may prefer to keep these two together with 12, all


right, and then among, in all of that, you have a center inside it. Now he goes still further. He breaks up 12 into three verses. You've got 12A, 12B and 12C. You have to do this with the Greek. It's not that way in English translation. 12A, 12C and the very center, the epsosy of the center is 12B. Now let's look at, hmm? No, I don't think so, no. Let me read the Greek and then, it's got three causes in it, OK? This is verse 12. Those who received him, that's that's phrase one. Second phrase, he gave them power to


become children of God. So there's your center. One phrase. And on the other side, now this part was nicely remembered. Those who believed in his name, and then it goes on with 13, not from blood, et cetera, OK? So the parallel is between 12A, those who received him, and 12C, those who believed in his name. Now that's beautiful. That's perfect. So it leaves you with the remnant is 12B, which is the center of the whole thing. He gave them power to become children of God. Yeah. Now for me that holds up. That's perfect. That 11 and 13 I was just thinking, to evolve, he came to his own home, and his own people received him now. And those who were born, I mean, those who were born simply of blood or the will of flesh or the will of man cannot intersect. And there's not a sense of like, I


mean, this is kind of joined in on a parallelism. It's like the flesh itself cannot recognize it. For some reason, those verses keep reminding me of the Jewish lineage, like blood meaning the bloodline of the mother, the will of man, the intention of the father, or a third triplet all indicating this basic Jewish lineage. That's not going to be that. In contrast to the parallelism between his own home and that whole business of blood generation and a family line according to the natural process. Yeah, that's a good contrast. How long is this particular version? Culpepper. Alan Culpepper. I'll get the paper as soon as I get a chance. I'm getting sick of it. That's


really convincing. I like that. That's good. And then also the whole question of authority, you see, authority, you're hung up on that question. Where does authority come from? Yeah, where does it come from? Moses? Right here. Show us. Twelve years. He gave them authority it says. Not power, actually. Well, those are two English words. Yes, but this is the word that is continuously used for authority. I don't think authority is appropriate for becoming a child of God. How can you have authority to become a child of God? You can have authority to run something or to say something, but to be something, you can't have authority to be something. The whole point of the synopsis is that Jesus didn't come and say, I tell you which authority, but that he invokes the authority in them, and so this is also the authority. They are children of God because we were children of God from Genesis,


and we are not children of Christ, exactly children of God. And so... But for John, which really looked at it in a new way here, it surprises you that he says he gave them power to become children of God, as if there were a time interval in between the offering of the, or the giving of the power and the becoming of the children of God. That can't be, can it? Well, that's a very loaded statement. I mean, you can look at that and see and all this. And then I believe he's arguing lies. That's true. Well, everybody's born as apostles, military apostles. Well, the chances are that that's what God made everybody. Yeah, why do you suppose he says he gave them the power to become children of God, rather than saying that he made them children of God? I think it's in this that he gave them the freedom to decide to become children of God, okay? So the exousia would be the option,


option. I think of authority, I think of author or resource, so that it's like a gift to catching a source of becoming a child of God. Okay, if you translate authority, you have to use that word. In power, this concept of authority, so all the later you get distracted, so you say power to become children of God. That also doesn't, well it doesn't imply that they have the choice, but I think the focus is on the choice. Yes, but you see, what is important to me is that the power is exercised by those who become the children of God. And that is what so perfectly corresponds to the synodic. And the image that we saw, we get this false image of the Jewish Christ, is that he goes around with power and zaps everyone.


No, precisely, empowers everyone. I think that's elsewhere in the Gospel when he says, you'll do the works that I do and you'll do greater works, but I'm not sure it's here. I'm not sure that the word exousia can be drawn out of the moment of becoming a child of God, or the choice, into life, so that it's expressed in other ways than here in the Christian Gospel. But as long as it is in the Gospel of John Marshall, that's what's important to me. In fact, he deliberately, he becomes like John the Baptist, he gets out of the way when he's about to leave, and says, now it's up to you, now I'm giving you this, you'll be what I am. That's what he said. But that's what's important to me. That's in the last several discourses, especially John 16. Any questions about that? I understand you're trying to say, is the choice all important, because we take responsibility for the power that's been given us. We receive it, and we leave with it, and then, that's why the 12A and


C are important parallels before you get to B. I mean, you have to receive, and you need to believe, before the power is given to be chosen. I mean, there needs to be an acceptance, there needs to be a real clear focus. It might be that if we looked up exousia in Kittal or somewhere, we'd find some verification of help there. We usually think of power, but these English words don't really suffice. We've got to go behind the English words of either power or authority. Obviously, power is a little out of place there. Is that right? Oh, that's right. See, power, though, in the classical what we call a capacity. But the funny thing is, can you have the capacity to become generated? Yeah,


the capacity to be a child. Capacity is good. That's good. Power sounds like something that's moving out. Power sounds like domination. Power over something else. Now, I don't think that's important. No, no, not in that sense at all. Not unless we say he empowered them. I think that catches me. Yes, that's better than saying he gave them the power, because the power then becomes a dubious thing, what it is. To say he empowered them to become children of God then puts the power right and limits it within the channel of becoming a child of God, which is what... Could we say that the more we are like a sister or brother of Christ, the more we are to be a child of God? Yes, that's true, but also the fact is that not only are we sister and brother, but somehow we're identified with him. The Gospel of John is saying that, that you will be in me, I will be in you, and somehow our identities will be merged so that you will stand before the Father as I stand before the Father, so that you will be in the world as I have been in the world. Who


caused the first war? Yes, it's an identification. Paul talks in the same way, but John carries it further, I think. Okay, next thing we want to go on with actually is the notion of the word, the logos, okay, which you could spend a whole year on, so we'll have a choice as to what aspects to take. Some of the things that I gave you, Brown's section on the word is helpful, but it's kind of long. If you choose to use another commentary and look up logos in that, Barrett or somebody like that, what that's about briefly is the question of the source of the notion of the logos in John, because it comes like out of the blue, so it comes like a meteor. It's nowhere else in John's gospel, and it's nowhere else in exactly the same sense in the New Testament. The places that are closest are in the first letter of John, remember, what we have seen with our eyes, touched with our hands, heard the word of life. Now, that's the same meaning as far as I'm concerned, with a new nuance, which is this word of life


which is broken open and poured the life of God into us. So the prologue of the first letter of John and the prologue of John's gospel are in deliberate parallel, both referring to that word. The other one that's very close is the prologue, by golly, to the letter of the Hebrews. In many and diverse ways, God in times past spoke to us through, spoke to our fathers. Yeah, Fred met our fathers and mothers the other day. I was afraid when he got a little further he was going to say through his son. Now, how do you speak through your son? Only if your son is a word, right? So there's the sense without the word. So the question is where that comes from. And as we'll see, a lot of people looked all over, Gnosticism, Greek philosophy, everywhere for


it. But it seems to come from the Old Testament. There's enough in the Old Testament, theology of the word of God, to support it without having to look elsewhere. But the fact is that when John chooses this word, he opens up the gospel, he opens up Christian theology to the whole world of religions and the whole world of philosophy by this kind of magically divine choice of the word logos, of the word word. Both at that time and in our own time. You get some inkling of that from what I read you from Abhishek Tananda there, that he finds a kind of spark leaping from the notion of the logos and the prologue all the way over to the deepest text in Hinduism. You find the same with Buddhism and elsewhere. With the Tao, for instance, the term of the Tao in Chinese philosophy. Plus the way that the Chinese translation of the gospel in the beginning was the Tao. Yeah, yeah. So immediately when you take that word into another religion, you open up a whole world of thought, a whole world of religious experience with that one word. It's a key which opens locks all


over the place and which opens up Christianity to a relationship to the other spiritual experiences of mankind, as well as to all the other things that are in the prologue. The creation, okay, the incarnation and the particular religion of Christianity, the words spoken in the Old Testament, the Torah, the prophets, the wisdom of the Old Testament, all of that is in that one word. And then we get into the whole question of the depth of language, the philosophical depth and density of language, which the picture is very fond of. It's important noting the various translations, it's really interesting because certainly it's a different translation of this prologue, the gospel, John like that, and seeing what each, see because the word for word in Greek and then in Hebrew, that already was a different choice of what was still having, carrying a lot of Jewish baggage or trying to, because it's coming from a Jewish background, it's intuitive really, so he's got a really good tradition of that


translation. But the word in Chinese for word just simply wouldn't carry the weight, so they have to choose down, which is already an interpretation and enhancement and an articulation of what is in the logos or in the bar, which simply by the Greeks or the Jews wouldn't be visible. So the translation is already an exploration and enhancement of what, and then in these other languages that begin, so each translation is already something different and yet it's like a... And yet it's as if it's intended, it's as if it's the illuminating of a new sector of reality over here with the same central term. Once again, we're talking about a center, it's like a light which you can turn on... ... ...