The Gospel Of John




  1. Expository preaching will take us through every sentence and most all words of this gospel.
    1. We identified expository preaching as one of many traits of higher ground for a church.
    2. Many love expository preaching, for it gives them a specific reference point for learning.
    3. Hearers can more easily remember what they heard, read ahead, or review the passage.
    4. They can focus on each sentence, verse, phrase, and word for fine learning and retention.
    5. It helps us learn the Bible, not just a subject from the Bible, though both have their place.
    6. It tends to keep the speaker closer to the scriptures, as inspired words drive the preaching.
    7. Expository preaching always opens up topical studies within it by Holy Spirit placement.
    8. John teaches our Lord’s unique sonship, Elijah the prophet, wine, Christ as Shepherd, election, regeneration before conversion, our Lord’s intercessory prayer, the promise of the Holy Spirit, footwashing, the new birth, the resurrection of the dead, worship in spirit and truth, purifying the church, John the Baptist’s ministry, recovery of Peter, heaven, the Person of scripture, honoring of parents, dealing with seeker sensitive types, etc.
    9. We want to know everything God has for His children in this unique gospel (of four).
    10. For those superstitious about expository preaching, is there record Jesus or Paul used it?
    11. The best or only example of expository preaching in the Bible is the great one (Neh 8:8).
    12. Paul, based on his epistles, used a topical method. See his quotations in Rom 3 or Heb 1.
  2. What attitude should we have when taking up a book of the Bible by expository preaching?
    1. God’s words are pleasant and profitable beyond comparison (Job 23:12; Psalm 1:2; 19:10-11; 119:72,97,103,105,111,127; Jeremiah 15:16; I Peter 2:2; II Peter 1:19-21).
    2. It is a spiritual book and every word is necessary for maximum living (Pr 30:5; Luk 4:4).
    3. It is a life-changing book for those that believe and obey, as Paul described (I Thes 2:13).
    4. We have found within the Bible 20+ one-word arguments by our Lord and His apostles, which further confirm to us the importance of every word – not one should be neglected.
    5. Can you be excited about one book, one chapter, one verse, and even one word at a time?
    6. Hebrews is a precious book: so is chapter one, and the first argument, and the first word!
    7. John is precious to many: so is chapter one, the introduction (1:1-18), and the first phrase.
    8. Some have favorite chapters in John that may not change, but let’s love all chapters more.
    9. We want to immerse ourselves in John to the dulling of others but for cross-references.
    10. Our thoughts and words should reflect John’s words by the Holy Ghost for a few months.
    11. Most cannot synthesize too much data at a sitting, so we go a word or phrase at a time.
    12. Slow down in your reading and take more time to meditate and exalt individual phrases.
  3. What benefit should we get from the study? What is the purpose of John and preaching it?
    1. The value of scripture is significant over creation to the conversion of souls (Ps 19:7-11).
    2. Scripture is given for doctrine, so we can believe truth about all things (II Tim 3:16-17).
    3. Scripture is given for reproof, so God may rebuke or reprove false assumptions or ideas.
    4. Scripture is given for correction, so we may be told of wrong practices that we follow.
    5. Scripture is given for instruction in righteousness, so we can be moved and guided into it.
    6. In John, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, will be set forth different from the other gospels.
    7. In John, Jesus declared scripture’s witness of Himself, so we will look for Christ’s glory.
    8. Let us reverently appreciate every chapter, verse, and word of this book as precious gold.
  4. Pray for your pastor, as he studies, prepares extensive outlines, and delivers many sermons.
    1. It is intimidating to any conscientious man to rightly divide every phrase of God’s word.
    2. We depend on God for any correct understanding of His word (Ps 119:18; Eph 1:17-18).
    3. We must rightly divide the word of truth and obtain its true sense (II Tim 2:15; Neh 8:8).
    4. We must grasp all the Holy Spirit intended but not go beyond the Holy Spirit (Prov 30:6).
    5. We must make it as manifestly clear and simple as possible (II Cor 3:12; 4:2; Col 4:4).
    6. We must avoid meats without profit, like exploring esoteric heresies (Heb 13:9; Tit 3:9).
    7. We must preach it boldly and authoritatively (Eph 6:19-20; II Cor 10:4-6; Jude 1:3).
    8. We must do what we learn in spiritual and earthly obedience (Luke 8:12-18; Jas 1:21-25).
    9. We must follow a course for optimal learning and retention (I Tim 3:2; II Peter 1:12-15).
    10. We must see and exalt the Lord Jesus Christ – the Person of all scripture (John 5:39).
    11. This speaker and writer is truly less than the least of all saints for starting such a project.
    12. God can open a book during its preaching by blessing expository emphasis in context.
    13. Controversy is the mother of orthodoxy, as it forces men to refine and defend a position.
    14. Expository preaching militates against proof-texting, sound bites, and simple solutions.
    15. Expository preaching requires careful study of purpose and context and comparisons.
  5. God kindly blessed us from Hebrews (1988), Ecclesiastes (2008), and Romans (2009-2014).
    1. We thanked God for contextual light of Jewish believers in Hebrews shortly before the end of Jerusalem in 70 AD and the proofs of Jesus Christ’s preeminence (33 sermons).
    2. We rejoiced in many lessons from Ecclesiastes for maximizing a godly life here and how earthly ambitions are vanity and vexation without a heavenly context (35 sermons).
    3. We thanked God for contextual light of Paul’s defense of the gospel against Jewish legalists in Romans and a tremendous foundation of doctrine and practice (159 sermons).
    4. We recently studied Peter’s epistles assisting Paul with converted Jews (43+23 sermons).
  6. Labor to learn this gospel thoroughly and retain its lessons and explanations in your memory.
    1. You could read one chapter of John a day to complete the whole book every three weeks.
    2. You could memorize one or more favorite verses from each chapter during the series.
    3. You could listen to the sermons again during the week from the website MP3 postings.
    4. You could pray for your pastor to make it manifestly plain and for you to grasp it clearly.
    5. Learning from this epistle will vary widely over the congregation, with the prepared and studious far outstripping the casual and neglectful, but let none be slothful as some.
  7. We will trust our English Bibles, rather than enter the fruitless field of Greek speculation.
    1. Men like Origen lied in Greek long before men like Charles Taze Russell lied in English.
    2. These scholars falsely so called will play games with logos, monogenes, hypostasis, etc.
    3. Once you choose to rely on the Greek, then you must pick one of many Greek versions.
    4. Let us remember the Greeks sought after wisdom and never found it. God mocked them!
    5. I hate Greek; it steals God’s words from God’s people, so they say, Its all Greek to me!
    6. There is no magic or mystery using Greek words, except to confuse and mystify hearers.
    7. Some will mock Roman Catholic use of Latin and then use Greek for shady meanings.
    8. There is more shady superstition in the Greek than there is profit, substance, or value.
    9. I have never heard or read a verse where light is shed by the Greek, not in the English.
    10. I do know this – internal contradictions like Mark 1:2 in any language prove their folly.
    11. For why we use the King James Bible.
  8. Context of any speech or writing is very important, but it must be fully studied elsewhere.
    1. A simple rule for remembering context is who, whom, why, what, when, and where.
    2. The context of Hebrews makes is easy to understand, especially the whom and the when.

WRITER (who)

  1. We remember God is sole Author of scripture with chosen writers (II Pet 1:21).
  2. John, a son of Zebedee, one of the original twelve apostles, is writer of John.
    1. His father was a fisherman, and his sons James and John fished with him.
    2. James is mentioned first as the older brother, as John was a young apostle.
    3. The business was successful enough to justify hired servants (Mark 1:20).
    4. Jesus called him while fishing; James and he left their father and business.
    5. Zebedee, James, and John were fishing partners with Peter (Luke 5:10-11).
    6. Notice how they left and who they left in the inspired record (Matt 4:21-22).
    7. His mother was Salome by crucifixion passages (Matt 27:15; Mk 15:40-41).
    8. She was one of the women often accompanying Jesus to minister to Him.
    9. John wrote five of the 27 books that make up our New Testament scriptures.
  3. John was in the inner circle of apostles with special privileges granted by Jesus.
    1. Jesus had three close apostles … Peter, James, John … who were privileged by Jesus to attend special events (Matt 17:1; 26:37; Luke 8:51; 22:8).
    2. This made John one of the three worthies of the Son of David (II Sam 23:8).
    3. Jesus warned of 70 A.D. to John, James, Peter, and Andrew (Mark 13:3-4).
    4. One ancient father (Theophylact) says that Salome was Jesus’ half-sister by an earlier marriage of Joseph, thus making James and John His nephews.
    5. Consider how Salome asked for her sons to sit with Him (Matt 20:20-21).
    6. Consider again how Jesus asked John to take care of His mother (Jn 19:27).
  4. John was a special favorite of our Lord, and he was allowed to write about it.
    1. He is identified as the disciple Jesus loved (John 19:26; 20:2; 21:7,20,24).
    2. He is described as leaning on Jesus’ bosom at the last supper (John 13:23).
    3. Jesus also loved Lazarus, Martha, and Mary, justifying special friendships.
    4. Good men love good men, for they are attracted by noble character (Tit 1:8).
    5. David showed this priority (Ps 119:63,79; 15:4; 101:4-8; 16:3; Pr 22:11).
    6. We may judiciously wonder what compatibility he had with our Lord Christ.
    7. Did Jesus love him for his loyalty, severity against error, love of truth, zeal?
    8. We should humbly and fearfully examine ourselves … would Jesus love us?
    9. The Son of David had among His apostles twelve men from John to Judas!
    10. Consider how Jesus identified Nathaniel (Jn 1:47 cp I Pet 3:4 cp Pr 22:11).
  5. Jesus asked John to care for His mother; he took her to his home (Jn 19:26-27).
    1. This is a great act of parental honor, for it was done during His crucifixion.
    2. This choice shows a dear and trusting esteem and respect of this Boanerges.
    3. We assume from the wording that John’s care of her extended to her death.
  6. Some call John the apostle of love, but you better define that title to be right.
    1. It is implied by some as they talk about John that he was nearly effeminate.
    2. Jesus named James and John, Boanerges, the sons of thunder (Mark 3:17).
    3. This was His assessment of their character and spirit. An apostle of love?
    4. The name Boanerges fit, for he asked to burn up Samaritans (Luke 9:51-56).
    5. You should notice that this name and event are not recorded in his gospel.
    6. Limit apostle of love title to Jesus loving him and/or teaching brotherly love.
    7. John was severe against apostates and sinners as reading his writings show.
    8. He jealously tried to stop another’s gift (Luke 9:49-50 cp Num 11:24-30).
    9. John was bold and confident in writing, strongly declaring his truthfulness.
    10. Of the gospel writers, he was by far strictest about doctrine (II Jn 1:10; etc.).
  7. John stayed in Jerusalem for some time; the Bible does not record travel details.
    1. He was responsible for Mary; she lived 15 years after Pentecost by tradition.
    2. He was with the eleven in Jerusalem waiting for the Spirit (Acts 1:13-14).
    3. He and Peter healed a lame man and opposed the Jews (Ac 3:1-11; 4:13,19).
    4. He and Peter went to Samaria to give the Spirit to believers (Acts 8:14-17).
    5. Herod Agrippa I killed his brother James early in church history (Ac 12:1-2).
    6. The pillars in Jerusalem were James (Jesus’ brother), Peter, John (Gal 2:9).
    7. It is very unlikely John was not at the council of Jerusalem (Ac 15:2,6,22).
    8. Showing a humility all should desire, John usually let Peter do the talking; he was younger, like Elihu; Peter had a personality to speak first anyway.
  8. Tradition suggests John left Judea before 70 A.D. and then lived in Asia Minor.
    1. He would have well known the Lord’s warning about fleeing Jerusalem.
    2. He was banished to Patmos, a desolate island in the Aegean Sea (Rev 1:9).
    3. He wrote the seven churches of Asia, implying he knew the churches well.
    4. Tradition says he founded the seven churches in Asia except for Ephesus.
    5. Since Paul did not mention him, he must have entered Asia after his death.
    6. Some say he survived being thrown in a cauldron of boiling oil in Rome.
    7. He supposedly died a peaceful death later in Ephesus, about 100 years old.
  9. He lived the longest by tradition and was the only one to die a peaceful death.
    1. He was likely the youngest of the apostles in order to live such a long life.
    2. He lived to an old age; God delivering him from the violent deaths of others.
    3. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs records the boiling oil incident and other details.
  10. The lofty content of the book, penned by a fisherman, proves its inspiration.
    1. It did not take long to known John was unlearned and ignorant (Acts 4:13).
    2. Yet, from the first words to final summaries, the book is sublimely beautiful.
    3. It has more mystery of the gospel than the history of the gospel (I Tim 3:16).
  11. John was confident giving the gospel of Jesus Christ to us, as the apostles were.
    1. He observed things of the crucifixion to fulfill Bible prophecy (John 19:35).
    2. He wrote with confidence of the life of our Lord Jesus Christ (Jn 21:24-25).
    3. He opened his first epistle with a declaration for true fellowship (I Jn 1:1-3).
  12. John was not perfect, though you must read elsewhere for these two events.
    1. He asked for an exalted seat in heaven (Matthew 20:20-24; Mark 10:35-41).
    2. He tried to burn up Samaritans, causing Jesus to criticize his spirit (Lu 9:55).
    3. True to His Person and doctrine, Jesus forgave and loved John first anyway.
    4. This glorious attribute of God and Jesus Christ exalted David and Peter high.
  13. He wrote the last book of the Bible to end the NT scriptures (Re 1:1; 22:18-21).


  1. The audience or expected readers of any work may be important for its context.
  2. There is some internal evidence that John most likely wrote to Gentile readers.
    1. We do know that he had a strong connection to the seven churches of Asia.
    2. We do know that he was banished to the isle of Patmos in the Aegean Sea.
    3. He may have founded several of the churches of Asia, Ephesus excepted.
    4. Why define words and customs Jews knew (John 1:38,41; 5:1-2; 4:9; 7:2).
    5. He referred to Jews 65 times, which might be negative to Jewish audiences.
    6. Asia had influence of Greek gnostics and Jewish legalists against believers.
  3. Yet, at least early, John’s ministry was in Jerusalem and to the Jews (Gal 2:9).
  4. Remember, the apostles were directed to extend their ministries to the world.


  1. He states his purpose in his gospel and in his first epistle (Jn 20:31; I Jn 5:13).
    1. He wrote to believers to build their faith for greater assurance of eternal life.
    2. This is stated clearly in I John 5:13, an epistle largely committed to the task.
    3. Faith, love, and righteousness are repeatedly given as proofs of eternal life.
    4. Faith clearly follows regeneration to life (I John 5:1,4-5; 4:7; 3:14; 4:15).
    5. The grammar of his epistle is certain and clear that faith is evidence of life.
    6. However, faith in Jesus Christ must be strictly according to His true identity.
  2. John 20:31 will be covered later, but let us confirm its agreement to I Jn 5:13.
    1. He could not have written with the opposite order of faith and regeneration.
    2. He could not have written his gospel to oppose and contradict his epistle.
    3. His gospel clearly and repeatedly has faith in Christ following regeneration (John 1:5,12-13; 3:3,6,8; 5:24-29; 6:44-45,6-65; 8:43-47; 14:17).
    4. He could not have opposed Paul (Rom 3:9-18; 8:7-8; I Cor 2:14; Eph 2:1-3).
    5. Therefore, John 20:31 states the same goal and purpose as does I John 5:13.
    6. To have life is not to get life – it is assurance of possession already (Jn 6:47).
    7. Will any also make these conditional (I Tim 6:12,17-19; Mat 5:44-45; 7:21)?
  3. This aspect of context is important to avoid creating sound bites like Arminians.
    1. Knowing John wrote to believers to increase their faith and assurance is key.
    2. Proof-texting is yanking a verse out of scripture and considering it sufficient.
    3. Most Arminians know one verse, 3:16, which they cannot explain or defend.
    4. Instead of John as cotton candy for goats, it is nourishing grain for sheep.
  4. John likely wrote his gospel and two epistles against many early heretical sects.
    1. The word of God and gospel were early corrupted (II Cor 2:17; Col 2:1-9).
    2. Paul warned Corinth about another Jesus and another spirit (II Cor 11:3-4).
    3. John from Jesus warned the churches of Asia about Nicolaitans (Re 2:6,15).
    4. Only John used antichrist and antichrists (I John 2:18,22; 4:3; II John 1:7).
    5. Note that John said many antichrists had gone out from them (I Jn 2:18-19).
    6. John identified their heresies as against the identity or nature of Jesus Christ.
    7. It is helpful to know these verses (I John 2:18-19,22-23; 4:2-3; II Jn 1:7-9).
    8. He was a liar that denied Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ, God’s Messiah.
    9. He was an antichrist that denied or confused the Father and Son relationship.
    10. Another test of antichrist was simple … Had Jesus Christ come in the flesh?
    11. Without losing focus or wasting time, consider a few of the early heresies.
    12. Cerinthus. First or second century Gnostic denying deity of Jesus, holding the Christ (Messiah) was separate from Him, followed the Jewish law, etc.
    13. Gnosticism. Belief the material world is evil, the spiritual world good, and spiritual knowledge (gnosis) could be gained for salvation, etc.
    14. Ebionites. Believed Jesus was Messiah but not divine, required continuation of the Jewish laws and rituals, counted Paul an apostate from the law, etc.
    15. Docetism. Taught the body of Jesus was only a ghost or phantom, He was too divine to be cumbered with a body, and the Christ came and left Him.
    16. Brief introductions to the heretics and heresies can be found at these links:
      1. Cerinthus.
      2. Gnosticism.
      3. Ebionites.
      4. Docetism.
    17. There were many heretics listed by Epiphanius e.g. Cerinthus, Ebion, Simon Magus, the Menandrians, Saturnilians, Basilidians, Nicolaitans, Gnostics, Carpocratians, Cerinthians, Ebionites, and Nazarenes among others. [Gill].
    18. They denied our Lord’s deity, person, incarnation, office in various ways.
    19. For more Christological heresies.
  5. Prophesied dangers of heretics should be kept somewhat distinct for identity.
    1. Jesus had warned of false Christs in Judea before 70 A.D. (Matt 24:5,24).
    2. Paul’s man of sin was still distant before being revealed (II Thess 2:1-3).
    3. John warned of heretics different and separate from both other prophecies.
    4. John’s antichrists were not false Christs, but rather enemies of Jesus Christ.
    5. John’s ministry extended beyond 70 A.D. and dealt with Gentiles in Asia.
    6. In Asia, if before 70 A.D., there would be little worry of things in Judea.
    7. Paul had warned Ephesus in Asia of this very kind of thing (Acts 20:25-32).
    8. Asia had influence by Greek gnostics and Jewish legalists against believers.
    9. For such assumptions, we tie the isle of Patmos with testimonies about John.
  6. John’s gospel and two epistles are very clear and strict against Christ-heresies.
    1. The test of antichrist was always this … Had Jesus Christ come in the flesh?
    2. John’s several tests of orthodoxy raise four critical issues about Jesus Christ.
    3. First critical issueIs Jesus of Nazareth the Christ, the Messiah of God?
    4. Second critical issueIs Jesus Christ the Son of God? By what means?
    5. Third critical issueDid Jesus Christ have a real, material human body?
    6. Fourth critical issueIs Jesus God (an issue not as obvious as the others)?
    7. At stake is being God’s and knowing the Father (I Jn 2:22-23; II Jn 1:7-11).
    8. Controversy is the mother of orthodoxy, making men be precise in doctrine.
  7. Thus, consider how in his first epistle that John affirms all four critical issues.
    1. He started with eternal God (from the beginning), the Word of life (I Jn 1:1).
    2. He then described the Word of life as the eternal life with the Father (1:2).
    3. He described this Word of God manifest to the apostles as God’s Son (1:2).
    4. He had heard, seen, looked on, handled this manifested eternal God (1:1-3).
    5. This eternal Word of God was manifested as Jesus the Christ, Son of God.
    6. This manifest divine being was Jesus Christ the Son of God with a real body.
    7. There can be no confusion on any aspect of identity of Jesus the Son of God.
    8. Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, the Son of God, the fulness of God in a body.
    9. Let’s never compromise any aspect of Him; let’s love Him with all our lives.
    10. All apostolic fellowship starts and ends with proper identity of Jesus Christ.
  8. Thus, consider how John’s gospel account also affirmed all four critical issues.
    1. He began with the Word is God and with God, maker of all things (Jn 1:1-3).
    2. The Word was made flesh and lived with them as the Son of God (Jn 1:14).
    3. John Baptist, six months older, said Jesus was actually before Him (Jn 1:15).
    4. The eternally invisible God had by this flesh Son revealed Himself (Jn 1:18).
    5. He recorded Andrew, Philip, Nathanael saying Jesus is Christ (Jn 1:40-51).
    6. He recorded our Lord’s testimony that before Abraham was, I am (Jn 8:58).
    7. He shows Thomas able to touch a real body after resurrection (Jn 14:27-28).
    8. Why did John write his gospel? Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God (20:31)!
  9. John also had a second test to prove spirits and prophets and truth (I Jn 4:1-6).
    1. The apostles, John included, were sent by God to declare the truth (I Jn 4:6).
    2. The difference between truth and error is submission to apostolic doctrine.
    3. If the apostles did not teach it or do it, we will not allow it taught or done.
    4. This strong, dogmatic opinion of their gospel was much like Paul (Ga 1:6-9).
    5. We are traditionalists – we hold to the tradition of the apostles (II Thess 3:6).
    6. Jesus through John praised Ephesus (John’s church) for disproving apostles, the church that Paul had plainly warned about such heretics (Acts 20:28-32).
    7. Let us commit ourselves to the word of God’s grace and never move from it.

METHOD (what)

  1. John recorded things the other gospel writers did not include in their accounts.
    1. Like Mark, he did not record details of our Lord’s birth to Joseph and Mary.
    2. He started with His eternal existence as God before all creation, as in I John.
    3. John does not present Jesus’ birth in this world as the Son of David; he does not trace his genealogy back to Adam or Abraham. He shows He is God.
    4. He emphasized much more than the other gospel writers the divine character of Jesus, or His deity (John 1:1-2,14,18; 5:23; 8:58; 10:30; 14:9; 17:5,21).
    5. He has six whole chapters of the last hours before Jesus was killed (12-17).
    6. It has more about Christ – His person, design, work – than the other gospels.
    7. The other gospels record more of His miracles and other external events.
    8. Rather than emphasize the history of Christ, John shows to us the mystery.
    9. Above and beyond the logic of Paul, John is lofty in spiritual truth of Christ.
    10. John shows us the Messiah, God incarnate, His mission, and in His words.
    11. John records His doctrine – carefully consider chapters 1,3,5,6,8,10,13-17.
    12. He wrote more than the others about Jesus Christ after His resurrection, the strong evidence of faith, the necessity of regeneration, the doctrine of our union with Christ; the sending of the Holy Spirit and His purpose; etc.
  2. Some consider it the most difficult book of the New Testament to interpret.
    1. Compared to the history and simple discourses of the others, it is difficult.
    2. Because of his purpose, his emphasis on faith creates Arminian sound bites.
    3. Because of emphasis on His deity, there are deep and profound connections.
  3. Many account John the most beautiful, profound, and personal book of the N.T.
    1. In order to see Jesus, as the Greeks said, embrace this book (John 12:20-21).
    2. Comparable to Genesis, consider its opening words that introduce the book.
    3. Comparable to Hebrews, consider merely its opening introduction of Jesus.
    4. Nowhere is the Godman seen in a more majestic and noble way than here.
    5. Where else do we start with In the beginning and move to Give me to drink?
    6. We have God, the Word made flesh, but He leaves, so we get God the Spirit!
    7. God could not make Himself more personal, and it is directed to individuals.
  4. As we shall see, the introduction of John is exceptional matter (John 1:1-18).
    1. The first chapter of Hebrews is hard to beat, but who can declare a winner?
    2. God revealed Himself to us, starting with the Word down to Jesus and John.
    3. First words are profound axioms for God and His elect against reprobates.
  5. John’s gospel has many more references to faith and eternal life than the others.
    1. The other gospels have no mention of being born again or passing into life.
    2. They use eternal or everlasting life six times, four by questions, but John 13!
    3. They use believe 23 times, seldom for eternal life, but John 46 times for life!
  6. Compare the other gospels, though we guard against all manmade distinctions.
    1. Matthew presents Jesus Christ as the Seed of Abraham and David to Jews.
    2. Mark presents Jesus Christ without any genealogy as a Servant to Israel.
    3. Luke presents Jesus Christ as the Seed of the woman and the Son of Man.
    4. John presents Jesus Christ as God, the Word of God, always with the Father.
    5. The other gospels have many small events; John has several large pictures.
    6. The other gospels show Jesus in history and time; John in eternity as God.
    7. Though confusing to some, this gospel is far more spiritual than the others.
  7. It might be helpful to consider a very brief summary of each chapter of John.
    1. God became flesh for us, Son of God, testified by John Baptist and others.
    2. His wine miracle and temple zeal both testify the character that was rejected.
    3. God’s gift of salvation was above Nicodemus in spiritual depth and breadth.
    4. Jesus saw religious reformation and gave what Jews rejected to Samaritans.
    5. Jesus claimed authority and life-giving power to do the work of His Father.
    6. Jesus wisely convinced seeker sensitive types that they did not believe Him.
    7. Jesus causes division among the Jews by teaching true doctrine from God.
    8. He exposed the Jews by provoking them to murder by preaching the truth.
    9. He healed a man born blind that shames the Pharisees and believes on Him.
    10. He distinguishes Himself as the good shepherd of those God had given Him.
    11. He raises Lazarus from the dead for his sisters and causes further division.
    12. Jesus rode into Jerusalem as Son of David and exposed Israel’s blindness.
    13. Jesus used a supper for footwashing, exposure of Judas, and brotherly love.
    14. Jesus said His going away was for good reason and for the gift of the Spirit.
    15. Fruitbearing and fellowship with Him require abiding in Him and His word.
    16. Jesus cheered the apostles for tribulation by the Comforter He would send.
    17. He prayed before His death for God’s glory, the apostles, and all believers.
    18. Jesus was betrayed, denied, and arraigned before Pilate by the rebel Jews.
    19. Jesus is tortured and crucified before dying, and John notes details about it.
    20. Jesus rose from the dead and showed Himself alive to Mary and the apostles.
    21. Jesus appeared again to the apostles while fishing and exhorted Simon Peter.
  8. John taught the doctrine of election, though Arminians limit him to John 3:16.
    1. He clearly recorded Jesus saving those the Father gave Him (John 6:37-39).
    2. He distinguished His sheep from others, given to Him by God (Jn 10:26-29).
    3. He knew He had elect Gentile sheep outside the nation of Israel (Jn 10:16).
    4. He admitted power over all flesh to give eternal life to the elect (John 17:2).
  9. John used the word world very unlike any other writer in the New Testament.
    1. This beloved apostle used the word world 59 times in just his gospel alone.
    2. If we add the 18 times he used world in his epistles, we have 77 such uses.
    3. The other three writers only used this word 32 times, and often differently.
  10. John has two of our one-word arguments, both of them chosen by Jesus Christ.
    1. In John 8:58, Jesus used the present tense am for existence before Abraham.
    2. In John 10:35, Jesus defended the title, gods, justifying Him as Son of God.
  11. If measured by Christ-centered, spirituality, heavenliness, love, what compares?
  12. John recorded about eight miracles, only two of which are in the other gospels.
    1. Seven are water to wine (2:1-11), healed a nobleman’s son (4:46-54), healed a man at the pool (5:1-9), fed five thousand (6:5-14), walked on water (6:15-21), healed the man born blind (9:1-12), and raised Lazarus (11:19-46).
    2. These signs were written to increase the faith of believers (John 20:30-31).
    3. They receive superstitious value by many that think they present the gospel.
    4. He performed a miracle after this by giving Peter 353 fish (John 21:1-14).
  13. It is estimated 80% of John is not recorded in the other three gospel accounts.

TIMING (when)

  1. Commentators range from just after our Lord’s ascension to as late as 97 A.D.
  2. The time cannot be proved with evidence; it matters little due to the content.
  3. We deny our Lord’s false Christs as John’s antichrists by nature, not by timing.
  4. He likely wrote it before Patmos, for his Revelation closed up the holy canon.
  5. It may have been written before 70 A.D. by a present tense reference (John 5:2).

LOCATION (where)

  1. Though important at times, like Peter in Babylon or Paul in prison, not so here.
  2. John likely wrote this epistle from Ephesus or Asia, and likely before Patmos.


  1. There are many corruptions in text, which computer analysis can easily reveal.
    1. The following are changes in both the Greek and English modern versions.
    2. This is only a sample, as there are others that could be listed among these.
    3. John 1:1 … the JW’s New World Translation makes the Word only a god.
    4. John 1:18 … the above NWT and the NASV make Jesus a begotten god.
    5. John 1:27 … all modern versions omit the words, is preferred before me.
    6. John 3:13 … most modern versions delete the words, which is in heaven.
    7. John 4:42 … all modern versions omit the words, the Christ.
    8. John 5:4 … all modern versions omit the whole verse for great confusion.
    9. John 5:3 … due to above, they remove, waiting for the moving of the water.
    10. John 6:39 … all modern versions omit the words, the Father’s.
    11. John 6:47 … all modern versions omit the words, on me, in Christ’s words.
    12. John 6:65 … all modern versions omit the word, my, in the last clause.
    13. John 6:69 … all modern versions replace the words, that Christ, the Son of the living God, with the words, the Holy One of God.
    14. John 8:1-11 … most modern versions either omit the section or bracket it.
    15. John 8:29 … all modern versions omit the words, the Father.
    16. John 8:59 … all omit, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.
    17. John 9:4 … all modern versions substitute … we for I … in the first clause.
    18. John 9:35 … all modern versions substitute man for God in the last clause.
    19. John 10:26 … all versions omit, as I said unto you, confirming election.
    20. John 12:47 … all modern versions substitute … keep for believe.
    21. John 13:18 … all modern versions substitute … my bread for bread with me.
    22. John 16:16 … all modern versions omit, because I go to the Father.
    23. John 16:23 … all versions substitute … He will give you in my name for in my name, He will give it you.
    24. John 17:12 … all modern versions omit, in the world.
    25. I John 5:7 … this is the first verse you should check in any Bible version.
    26. For I John 5:7 .
    27. For I John 5:7.
    28. For I John 5:7.
  2. There are many corruptions in interpretation, which experience brings to mind.
    1. John 1:12 is quoted, quoted, and requoted … always leaving off John 1:13.
    2. John 3:7 has been used to declare Nicodemus born again, but the ye denies.
    3. John 3:16 is always used for God’s universal love and decisional salvation.
    4. John 5:24 is often used for decisional regeneration, missing the verb tenses.
    5. John 6:37 is only partially quoted, leaving off the first clause about election.
    6. John 10:26 is used to offer goats the possibility of becoming sheep by faith.
    7. John 10:28-29 used for safety in God’s and Christ’s hands without election.
    8. John 13:1-17 is used to teach washing of clean feet today as a NT ordinance.
    9. John 14:27 and similar are used for inspiration, but they were for apostles.
    10. John 15:2 is used to teach perseverance of the saints in great fruitbearing.
    11. John 17:9 is used for election out of the world, but it is only about apostles.
    12. John 20:31 is used for John writing mall shoppers to give them eternal life.


  1. Our interpretation will be based on our presuppositions taken from all the Bible.
    1. No prophecy of scripture is of private interpretation; we will not allow John to teach anything contrary to what we know from the rest (II Pet 1:20).
    2. There is only one Author, so John agrees with Paul (II Pet 1:21; I Cor 2:13).
  2. We will use our English Bible, KJV, rather than critical commentaries attacking scripture, questioning canonicity, altering words, altering meanings, etc.
  3. We trust the KJV as God’s words.
    1. See point G in the introduction at the top for more about English vs. Greek.
    2. See one-word arguments.
  4. Inspired ambiguity means we will allow more than one interpretation or application of words, if both are true, and if both fit the words and context. There is nothing so broad as God’s word, though Origenistic allegorizing is foolishly and heretically wrong (Ps 119:96). Consider the ox (I Cor 9:9-10).
  5. Rules of hermeneutics here.


  1. Do you know how to use only John to prove Arminian use of 3:16 very wrong?
  2. If you seek the most thorough knowledge of the Holy Spirit, see chapters 14-16.
  3. If you want to see His love for you, then read His prayer, especially after 20.
  4. If you want greater details of His trial before Pilate and crucifixion, read on.
  5. Here is 3:16 refuted with only John.


  1. Our goal here is to present our own reason for the series, not his or the Spirit’s.
  2. We will cover it verse by verse, but we do not want to linger more than needed.
  3. We will seek to be positive rather than defensive or negative correcting abuses, though Arminians have made shambles of this book by perverted proof-texting.
  4. Let us fulfill a request by some Greeks: Sir, we would see Jesus (Jn 12:20-22).
  5. Since it has 21 chapters, we cannot stay too long in any place. Think Romans.
  6. Some of its chapters can be dealt with quickly, hopefully in a sermon or two.
  7. Our goals include satisfying many of the higher ground traits God has taught us.
    1. Think Christ-Centered (1), Holy Spirit (14-16), more prayer (17), spiritually minded (3,5-8,14-17) eternal perspective (11), relationship emphasis (14-17), fruit of the Spirit (15), soul winning (4), place for revival (2), reverent worship (17), self-examination (21), forgiveness and mercy (21), peace and unity (14-17), doctrinal steadfastness (7-8), love is the greatest (13).
    2. For higher ground traits.
  8. If you do not love Jesus Christ … Anathema Maranatha (I Cor 16:22; Ep 6:24).


  1. If you wish I proceeded faster, be patient, consider others, thoroughly grasp it.
  2. If you wish I proceeded slower, read and review and study for comprehension.
  3. The more familiar you are with John, greater your benefit and joy by the study.
  4. Also read I and II John, for they are his epistles and compatible throughout.
  5. As we recently learned, pray for the spirit of wisdom and revelation (Eph 1:17).
  6. If Paul needed prayers, your pastor needs them more (Eph 6:19; Ps 119:18).