Re: [John_Lit] Re: John as Title
- In a message dated 4/3/00 5:08:40 PM !!!First Boot!!!, staleyjl@...
<< Yes. I don't know how else to read John 3:31ff on a narrative level. I
suspect only 19th-21st century readers would find there a
different character than John. Not that I'm against 19th-21st century
>>If that's the case, then Origen and Heracleon were arguing like a couple of
19th-21st century readers way back in the 3d century, in their dispute over
where John's words ended in 1:15-18.
- Another way of putting it is that perhaps the Gospel of John begins the way
it does precisely because the author had a tradition of John's pronouncement
in 1:15 and 30. So he put 1:1-5 first and then verse 6 simply in order to
illustrate v 15, by showing that Jesus preceded John in eternity even though
John's ministry preceded his in time. Could it possibly be that simple?
I guess this line of argument would suggest that John's historical ministry
was not messianic.
If something like 1:15 or 1:30 were authentic, it would suggest that John is
putting someone else ahead of himself, and this would explain why the author
of the Gospel liked it so well. It was a self-deprecating statement by John
that he did not create, but on the contrary had some reason to believe was
authentic. It would thus contribute to the author's own purpose of "putting
John in his place."