The Word of Life: A Theology of John's Gospel

Overview

John’s gospel is one of the richest and most provocative theological writings in the New Testament. While its language is often simple, its thought is engaging and complex, opening readers to the world of God through the story of Jesus. Craig Koester here sketches the shape of John’s gospel and illustrates how debates about its meaning have profoundly shaped Christian life and thought.

The Word of Life explores the questions that have been important for generations, including ...

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Overview

John’s gospel is one of the richest and most provocative theological writings in the New Testament. While its language is often simple, its thought is engaging and complex, opening readers to the world of God through the story of Jesus. Craig Koester here sketches the shape of John’s gospel and illustrates how debates about its meaning have profoundly shaped Christian life and thought.

The Word of Life explores the questions that have been important for generations, including John’s understanding of God, the character of the world and its people, the elusive activity of the Spirit, and what it means to believe. Expressions like being “born again” and the idea that Jesus is “the way” can evoke both interest and uneasiness. Special sections are devoted to these and other disputed aspects of John’s theological language. Through these, readers can see how the gospel’s own context can shape a more vital and nuanced understanding of what such expressions mean.

Koester interacts with the best of current research and makes creative proposals about ways in which to understand the many aspects of John’s theology. Clear and highly readable, this guide to the theology of John’s gospel will appeal to a wide range of readers.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802829382
  • Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 10/1/2008
  • Pages: 264
  • Sales rank: 766,727
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Craig R. Koester

Craig R. Koester is professor of New Testament at Luther Seminary. His other books include Symbolism in the Fourth Gospel, Revelation and the End of All Things, and the Anchor Bible commentary on Hebrews.

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Table of Contents

1 Introduction 1

The Theological Shape of the Gospel 2

A History of Theological Questions from the Early Church to the Present 12

Venturing Forward 23

2 God 25

God and the Word 26

Creator and Giver of Life 30

The Sender 33

God of the Cross and Resurrection 41

The Father 47

3 The World and Its People 53

Created for Life 55

The Problem of Death 56

The Problem of Sin 65

The Problem of Evil 74

The World 80

4 Jesus 82

Human Being and Teacher 83

Prophet and Messiah 89

Son of God 96

5 Crucifixion and Resurrection 108

The Significance of Jesus' Crucifixion 109

The Significance of Jesus' Resurrection 123

6 The Spirit 133

The Spirit Makes Jesus Known 134

Source of Faith and Life 137

The Advocate's Abiding Presence 147

Teacher and Witness 151

7 Faith, Present and Future 161

Faith and the Present 162

Present Faith and Future Hope 175

8 Discipleship in Community and World 187

Discipleship 188

Christian Community 196

Jesus as the Way in a Pluralistic World 209

Notes 215

Bibliography of Works Cited 232

Index 242

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