Who is John the Elder?

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Christian2
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Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:45 am

Who is John the Elder. Is he the same as Apostle John?

Thanks.

DBowling
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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby DBowling » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:19 am

Here is a decent discussion of the issues surrounding whether or not John the Apostle and John Elder (Presbyter) are one and the same.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_the_Presbyter

Some relevant quotes from the article
John the Presbyter was an obscure figure of the early Church who is either distinguished from or identified with the Apostle John, by some also John the Divine. He appears in fragments from the church father Papias of Hierapolis as one of the author's sources and is first unequivocally distinguished from the Apostle by Eusebius of Caesarea. He is frequently proposed as an alternative author of some of the Johannine books in the New Testament.

Eusebius identifies John the Presbyter as the author of the Book of Revelation, the canonical status of which he disputed as he disagreed with its content, especially the Chiliasm implied in the "millennial kingdom".


In a nutshell Eusebius theologically disagreed with the concept of Millennialism taught in the book of Revelation, so he used a vague passage from Papias to (in my view artificially) distinguish John the Elder from John the Apostle. This way he could deny that Revelation was written by the Apostle John and question its canonicity.

I think the historical data supports the traditional view that Papias' John the Elder and John the Apostle are one and the same.
In fact Eusebius himself is inconsistent and elsewhere identifies Papias' John the Elder with John the Apostle.

Again... from the article.
The testimony of Eusebius is disputed, as his statement that Papias "was not himself a hearer and eye-witness of the holy apostles" is contradicted by a passage in Eusebius' Chronicle which expressly calls the Apostle John the teacher of Papias.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:31 am

DBowling wrote:Here is a decent discussion of the issues surrounding whether or not John the Apostle and John Elder (Presbyter) are one and the same.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_the_Presbyter

Some relevant quotes from the article
John the Presbyter was an obscure figure of the early Church who is either distinguished from or identified with the Apostle John, by some also John the Divine. He appears in fragments from the church father Papias of Hierapolis as one of the author's sources and is first unequivocally distinguished from the Apostle by Eusebius of Caesarea. He is frequently proposed as an alternative author of some of the Johannine books in the New Testament.

Eusebius identifies John the Presbyter as the author of the Book of Revelation, the canonical status of which he disputed as he disagreed with its content, especially the Chiliasm implied in the "millennial kingdom".


In a nutshell Eusebius theologically disagreed with the concept of Millennialism taught in the book of Revelation, so he used a vague passage from Papias to (in my view artificially) distinguish John the Elder from John the Apostle. This way he could deny that Revelation was written by the Apostle John and question its canonicity.

I think the historical data supports the traditional view that Papias' John the Elder and John the Apostle are one and the same.
In fact Eusebius himself is inconsistent and elsewhere identifies Papias' John the Elder with John the Apostle.

Again... from the article.
The testimony of Eusebius is disputed, as his statement that Papias "was not himself a hearer and eye-witness of the holy apostles" is contradicted by a passage in Eusebius' Chronicle which expressly calls the Apostle John the teacher of Papias.


I think they are one and the same, too.

https://www.ourdailyjourney.org/news-fo ... the-elder/

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:40 am

Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).

Christian2
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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:42 pm

PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


This is what Ben Witherington has to say:

http://www.beliefnet.com/columnists/bib ... ciple.html

Lazarus would have been an eye-witness, so does it really matter to wrote the Gospel of John?

And then we have this:

http://www.bible-researcher.com/muratorian.html

Clip: (9) The fourth of the Gospels is that of John, [one] of the disciples. (10) To his fellow disciples and bishops, who had been urging him [to write], (11) he said, 'Fast with me from today to three days, and what (12) will be revealed to each one (13) let us tell it to one another.' In the same night it was revealed (14) to Andrew, [one] of the apostles, (15-16) that John should write down all things in his own name while all of them should review it.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Wed Jun 21, 2017 4:44 am

Christian2 wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


This is what Ben Witherington has to say:

http://www.beliefnet.com/columnists/bib ... ciple.html

Lazarus would have been an eye-witness, so does it really matter to wrote the Gospel of John?

And then we have this:

http://www.bible-researcher.com/muratorian.html

Clip: (9) The fourth of the Gospels is that of John, [one] of the disciples. (10) To his fellow disciples and bishops, who had been urging him [to write], (11) he said, 'Fast with me from today to three days, and what (12) will be revealed to each one (13) let us tell it to one another.' In the same night it was revealed (14) to Andrew, [one] of the apostles, (15-16) that John should write down all things in his own name while all of them should review it.


IMO:
The beloved disciple is Lazarus and it was his telling that the Elder John wrote down and that the GOJ was written by the Elder John using the testimony of Lazarus.
If we read the GOJ without reading the other gospels into it ( or our own views) and we reconcile Revelations and the letters of John, this makes the most sense.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Thu Jun 22, 2017 8:40 am

PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


Why would Lazarus change his name to John?

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:09 pm

Christian2 wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


Why would Lazarus change his name to John?


The theory goes that after Jesus death, the authorities wanted to kill Lazarus because he was the single greatest statement of Jesus claim to being the Messiah ( and more) due to his resurrection.
There maybe some merit to that, son't really know.
I think it makes sense, considering how the end of the GOJ is worded, that the beloved disciple (Lazarus) told this to his disciples and that John ( The elder) wrote them down and it became the Gospel according to John.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby DBowling » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:01 am

About a year ago I did a personal study on the Authorship and Date of the Gospel of John.

Both the internal and external evidence demonstrate pretty compellingly (for me at least) that John the Apostle was the author of the Gospel of John.

Below is a quick summary of my notes.

A. External Evidence

Irenaeus (130-200)
- Irenaeus, a disciple of Polycarp who was a disciple of the Apostle John, explicitly names the Apostle John as author.
- Irenaeus - Against Heresies 3.1.1
“Afterwards, John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon His breast, did himself publish a Gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia.”
- All early church writers after Irenaeus do not question John's apostolic authorship.

Early Manuscript Evidence
- Manuscripts from as early as 200 AD (P66 and P75) include the title “The Gospel According to John”
- Manuscripts from the beginning of the second century demonstrate that the fourth gospel was associated with the apostle John.

Muratorian Fragment [ca. 155/200AD]
- The Muratorian Fragment is the oldest surviving list of canonical books:
"The fourth Gospel is by John, one of the disciples."


B. Internal Evidence

Westcott’s Concentric Proofs
a. The Author was a Jew
- He was acquainted with Jewish feasts and customs
b. The Author was a Jew in Palestine
- He had a detailed knowledge of local places available only to one who had actually lived in Palestine.
c. The Author was an Eyewitness of what He Wrote
- There are incidental details throughout the book that indicate an eyewitness
d. The Author was an Apostle
- He had an intimate knowledge of what happened among the disciples
e. The Author was the Apostle John
- John 21:24 identifies the ‘disciple who Jesus loved’ as the author of the gospel of John
- The seating at the Last Supper (John 13:23) indicates that the "disciple who Jesus loved" was a member of Jesus' inner circle (Peter, James, John)
- The disciple who Jesus loved can’t be Peter because Peter talks to him (John 13:24)
- The disciple who Jesus loved can't be James because James was martyred by Herod Agrippa in 44 AD (Acts 12:2)
Therefore, John the Apostle is the only member of Jesus' inner circle who could be "the disciple who Jesus loved".

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:32 am

I think you are kind of stretching it a bit to be honest but it is a possibility.
There is no explicit statement that equates John Zebedee as the beloved disciple.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:55 am

PaulSacramento wrote:
Christian2 wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


Why would Lazarus change his name to John?


The theory goes that after Jesus death, the authorities wanted to kill Lazarus because he was the single greatest statement of Jesus claim to being the Messiah ( and more) due to his resurrection.
There maybe some merit to that, son't really know.
I think it makes sense, considering how the end of the GOJ is worded, that the beloved disciple (Lazarus) told this to his disciples and that John ( The elder) wrote them down and it became the Gospel according to John.


So, Lazarus changed his name to John. Odd that he would change it to John because the Jews who wanted to kill him would turn their heads at the name John and take a second look because it was the name of one of Jesus' apostles. I would think if Lazarus wanted to change his name he would have chosen a name not associated with Jesus' disciples, like Henry or Jacob.

Christian2
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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby Christian2 » Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:03 am

DBowling wrote:About a year ago I did a personal study on the Authorship and Date of the Gospel of John.

Both the internal and external evidence demonstrate pretty compellingly (for me at least) that John the Apostle was the author of the Gospel of John.

Below is a quick summary of my notes.

A. External Evidence

Irenaeus (130-200)
- Irenaeus, a disciple of Polycarp who was a disciple of the Apostle John, explicitly names the Apostle John as author.
- Irenaeus - Against Heresies 3.1.1
“Afterwards, John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon His breast, did himself publish a Gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia.”
- All early church writers after Irenaeus do not question John's apostolic authorship.

Early Manuscript Evidence
- Manuscripts from as early as 200 AD (P66 and P75) include the title “The Gospel According to John”
- Manuscripts from the beginning of the second century demonstrate that the fourth gospel was associated with the apostle John.

Muratorian Fragment [ca. 155/200AD]
- The Muratorian Fragment is the oldest surviving list of canonical books:
"The fourth Gospel is by John, one of the disciples."


B. Internal Evidence

Westcott’s Concentric Proofs
a. The Author was a Jew
- He was acquainted with Jewish feasts and customs
b. The Author was a Jew in Palestine
- He had a detailed knowledge of local places available only to one who had actually lived in Palestine.
c. The Author was an Eyewitness of what He Wrote
- There are incidental details throughout the book that indicate an eyewitness
d. The Author was an Apostle
- He had an intimate knowledge of what happened among the disciples
e. The Author was the Apostle John
- John 21:24 identifies the ‘disciple who Jesus loved’ as the author of the gospel of John
- The seating at the Last Supper (John 13:23) indicates that the "disciple who Jesus loved" was a member of Jesus' inner circle (Peter, James, John)
- The disciple who Jesus loved can’t be Peter because Peter talks to him (John 13:24)
- The disciple who Jesus loved can't be James because James was martyred by Herod Agrippa in 44 AD (Acts 12:2)
Therefore, John the Apostle is the only member of Jesus' inner circle who could be "the disciple who Jesus loved".


It was the 12 disciples who were at the Last Supper. Lazarus was not one of the 12.

I always thought the term "the disciple who Jesus loved" was odd, because Jesus loved them all.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby DBowling » Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:12 am

PaulSacramento wrote:I think you are kind of stretching it a bit to be honest but it is a possibility.
There is no explicit statement that equates John Zebedee as the beloved disciple.


There is no explicit statement in the Gospel of John equating "the beloved disciple" to anyone.
But I think Wescott does an excellent job using the internal evidence within the Gospel of John to demonstrate that John the Apostle is the "beloved disciple".

The external evidence is pretty explicit.
Irenaeus does explicitly identify John the Apostle as the disciple who leaned on Jesus breast and as the author of the Gospel of John.
And as a disciple of Polycarp who was a disciple of John the Apostle, Irenaeus has a pretty good pedigree to accurately identify John the Apostle as the author of the Gospel of John.

And the Muratorian Fragment also explicitly identifies John the Apostle as the author of the fourth Gospel

When you look at the internal and external evidence together, there is no other potential candidate who comes close to John the Apostle.

If John the Apostle is 'stretching it a bit', then everyone else is stretched well beyond the breaking point...
... IMHO of course :)

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:24 am

Christian2 wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:
Christian2 wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:Well, you can go a step further really.
See, nowhere does the GOJ state WHO the beloved disciple was BUT only one person is mentioned in the GOJ as the one that Jesus loves and that is Lazarus.
This has made some conclude that the GOJ was passed on by Lazarus to the writer of the GOJ ( which could still have been John)
Some have argue don the basis of literary critique that the writer of Revelation and the GOJ could not be the same person.

I heard that, after being brought back to life that Lazarus left the Jerusalem area and changed his name to John ( as one theory goes).


Why would Lazarus change his name to John?


The theory goes that after Jesus death, the authorities wanted to kill Lazarus because he was the single greatest statement of Jesus claim to being the Messiah ( and more) due to his resurrection.
There maybe some merit to that, son't really know.
I think it makes sense, considering how the end of the GOJ is worded, that the beloved disciple (Lazarus) told this to his disciples and that John ( The elder) wrote them down and it became the Gospel according to John.


So, Lazarus changed his name to John. Odd that he would change it to John because the Jews who wanted to kill him would turn their heads at the name John and take a second look because it was the name of one of Jesus' apostles. I would think if Lazarus wanted to change his name he would have chosen a name not associated with Jesus' disciples, like Henry or Jacob.



It's a theory dude, no one is saying that it actually happened.

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Re: Who is John the Elder?

Postby PaulSacramento » Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:28 am

DBowling wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:I think you are kind of stretching it a bit to be honest but it is a possibility.
There is no explicit statement that equates John Zebedee as the beloved disciple.


There is no explicit statement in the Gospel of John equating "the beloved disciple" to anyone.
But I think Wescott does an excellent job using the internal evidence within the Gospel of John to demonstrate that John the Apostle is the "beloved disciple".

The external evidence is pretty explicit.
Irenaeus does explicitly identify John the Apostle as the disciple who leaned on Jesus breast and as the author of the Gospel of John.
And as a disciple of Polycarp who was a disciple of John the Apostle, Irenaeus has a pretty good pedigree to accurately identify John the Apostle as the author of the Gospel of John.

And the Muratorian Fragment also explicitly identifies John the Apostle as the author of the fourth Gospel

When you look at the internal and external evidence together, there is no other potential candidate who comes close to John the Apostle.

If John the Apostle is 'stretching it a bit', then everyone else is stretched well beyond the breaking point...
... IMHO of course :)



I always worry a bit about taking tradition at face value.
Not saying that is the case mind you because the external evidence does seem to point that way.
The issue becomes one of textual criticism and why John the Elder is called that as opposed to John Zebedee ( or John Bar Zebedee if you prefer).

Then there is the issue of John Zebedee being named ( twice) in the GOJ and the term "beloved disciple" being used independent of that.


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