John’s Blog

It is now some 50+ years since the events about which I write.[1]  Many of those who people its pages are dead, my brother James among the first,[2] Peter and Paul in the same year as each other[3].  Jerusalem is a ruin[4], it seems odd but some 15 years after that event it now seems it has always been like that – but we were not surprised, for Jesus told us it would happen[5] – we just didn’t understand.  As I write I am often conscious of that; we didn’t understand so much then but just as he promised the Comforter came to ‘lead us into all truth’.

My real purpose in writing another Gospel is simple – so simple I’ve included it in what I’ve written ‘But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God and that, through believing, you may have life in his name’ (John 20:31).  Future generations have called me an Evangelist and that has pleased me, for from beginning to end that was my purpose in writing.  They have been intrigued by the things I put in and the things I left out – I couldn’t have put it all in – there would not have been room nor would my writing arm have stood it (John 20:30). I thought long and hard about what to put in, and where to put it, so that my readers could see what I now see.  As the years have passed my wonder and understanding have grown in equal measure, as has my sadness at some who seem to deliberately misunderstand and diminish our Saviour.  I suppose that’s why I started the way I did.  Of course when John (the Baptist) first pointed him out as the ‘one who was to come’, ‘the Lamb of God’ we knew he was ‘the Christ’ (the Messiah) but we didn’t really know or understand what that meant  – not then anyway.

For us, God was God Almighty (El Shaddai), the God and Father of Abraham and Isaac and Israel. The one who ‘brought us up out of the Land of Egypt’ – He was the God who restored us again from captivity in Babylon, at whose instructions the Temple was rebuilt – His law (Torah) was read every Sabbath in Synagogue – the God welcomed, revered, whose word guided our way, a lamp to our feet as David said.

We always longed for ‘Messiah’. Through the oppression of Greeks, Seleucids andRomans we longed for one to set us free – but the freedom he brought was not what we thought, political or national freedom but much more vast, far more precious – the Son really did set us free and you as well.

By the time I wrote this there were many who wanted to complicate things – to make Jesus, not the Jesus we walked and talked with, the one we slept beside under the stars, the one I watched die – and whose empty tomb I stood in, believing and knowing nothing of what was to come – this Jesus they want to make like themselves – to make him suit their thinking – not really human – not really God’s Son – not one who lets himself be known but one known by them who are in the ‘in group’. It seems nothing much has changed in your day.

How right Jesus was when he told Nicodemus ‘Unless you are born of water and the Spirit you cannot (even) see the Kingdom of God’ (John 3).  Believe and you will see.

Please in this world of yours – when people peddle religion and philosophers claim that religions are all the same, when knowledge is the passport to a good life and success, read and meet my Jesus, believe and become (like me) a disciple whom Jesus loves.

For now

John

john@fisherwick.net

 

 


[1] Changes in the Calendar since mean that Jesus was crucified in 29AD and it is now 85AD.

[2] Martyred by order of Herod Agrippa in 44AD

[3] In the Neronian persecution in Rome in 64 (or 65) AD

[4] After a rebellion by the Jews, Jerusalem was besieged and the city and the temple destroyed by the Romans in 70AD

[5] Mark13:2 or Matthew 24:2

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