The Book of 1 John
THE BOOK OF 1 JOHN:
Book Related Background Information
|1. About The Writer John|
|2. About the Place of Writing|
|3. About The Date of Writing|
|4. About The Occasion For Writing|
|5. The Characteristics Of The Book|
|6. The Key Verse Of The Book|
|7. Companion Writings|
JOHN (Jahhn) Greek form of Hebrew name meaning, "Yahweh has been gracious."
John the Apostle, one of the sons of Zebedee. The sons of Zebedee (John and James, not the brother of our Lord) were among the first disciples called (Matt. 4:21-22; Mark 1:19-20). They were fishermen on the Sea of Galilee and probably lived in Capernaum. Their father was sufficiently prosperous to have "hired servants" (Mark 1:20), and Luke 5:10 states that James and John were "partners with Simon" Peter.
John is always mentioned in the first four in the lists of the twelve (Matt. 10:2; Mark 3:17; Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13). John is also among the "inner three" who were with Jesus on special occasions in the Synoptic Gospels: the raising of Jairus' daughter (Mark 5:37), the transfiguration (Mark 9:2), and the Garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:32-33). Andrew joined these three when they asked Jesus about the signs of the coming destruction of Jerusalem (Mark 13:3).
The sons of Zebedee were given the surname Boanerges, "sons of thunder" (Mark 3:17).
The apostle John appears three times in the Book of Acts, and each time he is with Peter (1:13; 3:1-11; 4:13,20; 8:14). After Peter healed the man, they were arrested, imprisoned, and then released. They were "unlearned and ignorant men" (Acts 4:13), but they answered their accusers boldly: "we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:20).
The disciple in these verses was the Beloved Disciple, who reclined with Jesus during the last supper (13:23-26), stood at the cross with Jesus' mother (19:25-27), ran with Peter to the empty tomb (20:2-10), and recognized the risen Lord after the great catch of fish (21:7).
Legends about the apostle continued to develop long after his death. According to tradition, John lived to an old age in Ephesus, where he preached love and fought heresy, especially the teachings of Cerinthus. The tomb of John was the side of a fourth-century church, over which Justinian built the splendid basilica of St. John. The ruins of this basilica are still visible in Ephesus today.
THE PLACE OF WRITING:
Probably from Ephesus
PROBABLE DATE OF WRITING:
A.D. 90 (late 80's / early 90's)A.D. 90 (late 80's / early 90's)
OCCASION FOR WRITING:
Many identify the trends of Gnosticism, so prevalent in Asia Minor at that time, but the scope of the book is much larger and speaks to the truth of the Christian's relationship with God, through Jesus Christ, a warning concerning coming "Anti-Christs," and the call to a holy walk in response to a loving God.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BOOK:
The four great contrasts (2):
1. Light and Darkness (1:6-7; 2:8-11)
2. Love of "the world" and the "Love of God" (2:15-17)
3. "Children of God" and "Children of the Devil" (3:4-10)
4. Love and Hate (4:7-12, 16-21)
The six views of God (3):
1. God is Light (1:5)
2. God is Righteousness (2:29)
3. God is Love (4:8, 16)
4. God is Life (5:11, 12)
5. God is Truth (2 John )
6. God is Good (3 John)
The seven tests of our walk with God (4):
1. Are you walking in The Light? (1:6)
2. Are you admitting that you are a sinner? (1:8)
3. Are you obeying God's will? (2:4)
4. Are you imitating Christ? (2:6)
5. Are you a loving person? (2:9)
6. Do you have a strong relationship to the world? (2:15)
7. Do you prove Christ is Righteous by your life? (5:3)
"These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, in order that you may know that you have eternal life."
"The Gospel of Jesus Christ", According to John; 2 John; 3 John and
"The Revelation of Jesus Christ", According to John.