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Some Evidence for a Signs Source in John

I started this mini-thread by mentioning one of the now-lost documents of early Christianity that I would love to have discovered, the alleged “Signs Source” of the Gospel of John.  Before giving the evidence that there may have been some such source, I went off on a tangent, in order to show that John has a different view of Jesus’ spectacular deeds from what you find in Matthew, Mark, and Luke.   In these earlier Gospels, Jesus does “miracles,” both because he feels compassion for those in need and in order to illustrate his teaching that the Kingdom of God was soon to appear.  In John, however, he does “signs” to prove that he really is a divine being. So, what evidence is there that John’s accounts of Jesus’ signs derive from a previously existing, but no longer surviving, written source?   The evidence does not make a slam-dunk case, and so the matter is debated among scholars.  I’ve long thought, though, that there probably was some such source. First, some basic factual information.  These are the [...]

2020-04-03T13:37:51-04:00May 27th, 2015|Canonical Gospels|

Discrepancies *Inside* the Fourth Gospel

OK, back to contradictions. This thread (such as it is – so far there’s been no thread) began with a reader’s question of how there could be contradictions in the work of a single author? Was he just inattentive? Didn’t he care? Was he sloppy? In the previous post I pointed out that with someone like Paul, it was possible that he changed his mind about some things over the decade covered by his letters. But how about internal contradictions within a book? There are lots of these two? How can they be explained? In some instances they can be explained by the fact that an author has taken a variety of different sources and incorporated them into his writing. On occasion, these sources have discrepancies (sometimes very slight) between them, and the author for some reason or another did not choose to smooth them out. Or he didn’t notice them! (More on that in my next post.) A terrific set of examples comes from the Gospel of John. Most people reading John don’t see [...]

2020-04-03T18:06:12-04:00October 31st, 2013|Canonical Gospels, Reader’s Questions|
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