Symbolism in the Fourth Gospel: Meaning, Mystery, Community

Overview

Craig Koester's respected study uses the symbolic language of the Gospel of John as a focus to explore "the Gospel's literary dimensions, social and historical context, and theological import." This edition is fully revised and updated and includes a number of new sections on such topics as Judas and the knowledge of God. Fresh treatments are given on a number of issues, including the Gospel's Christology. This new edition offers both new insights and proven worth for students ...
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Symbolism in the Fourth Gospel: Meaning, Mystery, Community

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Overview

Craig Koester's respected study uses the symbolic language of the Gospel of John as a focus to explore "the Gospel's literary dimensions, social and historical context, and theological import." This edition is fully revised and updated and includes a number of new sections on such topics as Judas and the knowledge of God. Fresh treatments are given on a number of issues, including the Gospel's Christology. This new edition offers both new insights and proven worth for students and scholars alike.
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Editorial Reviews

Marianne Meye Thompson
Koester devotes far more space to probing the earthly images and the way in which symbols aid us in apprehending divine reality than he does on the referent of the image, or the divine reality itself. While the approach leaves us with helpful information about the symbols themselves and how they are intended to function, it leaves us with far less a grasp of the reality that they are supposed to convey.
Society of Biblical Literature
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780800628932
  • Publisher: Augsburg Fortress, Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/1995
  • Pages: 300
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Edition
Preface to the First Edition
Abbreviations
1 Symbol, Meaning, and Mystery 1
2 Representative Figures 33
3 Symbolic Actions 79
4 Light and Darkness 141
5 Water 175
6 The Crucifixion 207
7 Symbol and Community 247
8 Symbol and the Knowledge of God 287
Appendixes on Special Topics 301
Bibliography 317
Index of Subjects 339
Index of Authors 343
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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2000

    An Excellent Book

    This is an excellent book. It is not a line-by-line commentary. Instead, it explains John's Gospel by analyzing its symbolism. Martin Luther said that the Scriptures are the 'cradle of Christ,' a human artifact through which the Word of God reveals God in Christ to us, through the Holy Spirit. Koester demonstrates how the Fourth Gospel employs sophisticated literary techniques, particularly symbolism, to convey its message. 'The Gospel presents the paradox that the divine is made known through what is earthly and the universal is disclosed through what is particular,' (p.3). I recommend this book to all students of the Bible because it exegetes Scripture on the premise that, as an artifact, its literary features are significant, without losing the understanding that the Word is the means by which God reveal's God's self to humanity. Koester seeks to show how this book, probably edited over a period of years, written for a specific community at a particular point in time and employing many techniques common to Greek dramatic writing (such as a prologue and the stylized framing of interactions between representative persons) presents an image of the man, Jesus of Nazareth, who presents the image of God. The book is well-written and thoroughly researched. While its subject-matter is not simple, it will reward anyone who makes the effeort to read it thoroughly.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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