1. Prologue

John 3:16 God came down in a human suit to kill himself to save us from him.

Since this was written, I learned a lot about John.

First of all, I learned that it was not written by John the apostle.

It was written by some guy somewhere around 90 CE. BTW, John the apostle would have been about 90 years old at the time.

Paul was the first to write about Jesus, then Mark, then Matthew and Luke, then John.

So John was a Johnny-come-lately to the parade of "witnesses and has to be read in the context of the time at which it was written:

The book of John was the last of the four Gospels to be written; therefore, the author was trying to appeal to a second century church that had already become predominantly gentile. Bearing this in mind, John had to appeal to these pagans of the Greco-Roman world whom he was addressing. This was accomplished by carefully integrating heathen practices with elements of the Jewish faith. The notion that an animal was to be revered and sacrificed as a god was well known and widely practiced throughout the Roman Empire in mystery religions such as Mithraism, which flourished during the time that the Book of John was being written. This book's author was well aware of this and seamlessly fused together the Mithraic sacrifice of the redeeming bull with the Jewish sacrifice of the Paschal lamb.

It is for this reason that only in John's Gospel does John the Baptist proclaim of Jesus, "Behold, the Lamb of God . . . ." (1:29, 36) In fact, of the four Gospels, only John ever equates Jesus with the Passover lamb. If Matthew, Mark, and Luke agreed with the fourth Gospel that the lamb was the antitype of Jesus, as John insisted, why is it that when the synoptic Gospels described the communion at the last supper, Jesus raised the matzo saying, "This is my body"? He should have raised the Paschal lamb. At mass, priests should be giving their parishioners lamb chops rather than a wafer for communion.

In addition, only John's narrative includes the story of the Roman soldiers who pierced the side of Jesus rather than break his legs on the cross (John 19:31-37). This brief narrative only fits into the theological story line of the fourth Gospel. This is because only the author of the Book of John was eager not to have Jesus' bones broken so as not to violate the prohibition of breaking the bones of the Paschal lamb found in the Book of Exodus (12:46).

With this in mind, John completely contradicts the first three Gospels, and maintains that Jesus was crucified on the eve of Passover, or the 14th day of Nissan. The Book of John reads, "Now it was the day of preparation for the Passover . . . . Then he handed him over to them to be crucified." (19:14-16)

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