1 John, F

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The Author

The author is unknown. It is suspected to be a follower from the Christian Johannine Community, and because of that the author is named after John the Apostle

Written in A.D. 90-100

The Audience

The purpose of John’s letter is to oppose certain false ideas, especially about Jesus, and to deepen the spiritual and social awareness of the Christian community. John is writing to the Christians who are facing false accusations about Jesus. The reader is urged to believe Jesus is the Messiah.

John is writing to make and defend claims of Jesus, who continued to emerge more largely on to the community’s horizon and its heart of life.

Date of the writing (c.)

The date of the writing for John’s gospel is approximately 90-100 AD


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Jesus is depicted as noble and powerful and one with his Father. He is fully in control of his destiny, even through his passion and death as well as Resurrection.

The Eagle

The Church’s animal depiction for 1 John is the eagle. The eagle is a symbol of the Resurrection and Ascension of Christ because it soars upward to the sky just as Jesus soared up to heaven when he Resurrected. The eagle also symbolizes baptized Christians, who have symbolically died and risen with Jesus Christ.
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Unique Themes and Stories

In John’s Gospel, the theme is light and darkness; "I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness" (12:46). Jesus is seen as the light of the world. This verse states that those who lack in faith will be nurtured through Jesus.

In John, the divinity of Jesus is always on the background. Jesus, the pre-existent Word of God, The Risen Christ among us, taught through account of his seven great sign I AM statements. Throughout the gospel Jesus displays omniscient, refers to his pre-existent life and speaks and behaves like the risen Lord. The term pre-existent is unfortunate which leads to the misunderstanding that the person of Jesus Christ can be split into the ‘eternal Son’ and the ‘temporal Son’.

What is eternal, pre existent, is the Word of God, not the person of Jesus of Nazareth- the Word being God’s eternal commitment to be personally present in history.

Unique Themes, Images, and Stories

Model Disciple

In 1 John, the model disciple was someone who was completely obedient to God. This disciple is someone who always listens to, has faith in , and follows Jesus. It is believed that John is the mode disciple, (identified as the "beloved disciple"), since he only appears in the Gospel of John. The "beloved disciple" is present at the foot of Jesus' cross when Jesus was crucified and was the first to discover Jesus had left his tomb on Eater morning.
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allegorical level of meaning in the seven signs

The main point of all the allegorical level of meaning in the seven signs is the diverse aspects of our spiritual journey. One example is the cure of the man at the pool in Bethesda which is about the sacramental power of the forgiveness of sin. The allusions John makes on the gospel, support our understanding and acknowledgement on the seven signs. This way we can apply the allegorical meaning to our everyday life situations. Jesus’ miracles focus on symbolic meaning rather than on the literal meaning. The physical miracles symbolize a deeper truth and reality because people can relate to them. In the wedding at Cana, Jesus changed the water into wine due to the lack of wine. In a wedding at ancient times and even nowadays, there must always be wine for the guests. When Jesus changes water into wine (2:1-11), John foreshadows that Jesus,which is water at first, will be the blood,in other words the wine, of the New Covenant. In the wedding at Cana, Jesus stands as the Risen Christ.