The life and ministry of Jesus are presented to us through the gospels books of Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John. However, the book of John is widely referred to by theologians as the “spiritual gospel.” For many Bible readers, John has a special message about Jesus. So, how is Jesus portrayed in the book of John?
In all other revelations about Jesus, the book of John suggests that besides Jesus being in humankind, He is also a divine being. In his book, John reveals Jesus’ divinity by saying that, in the beginning, Jesus was the word who was with God, and the word was God through whom all things were created (John 1:1-3). As he narrates his encounter with Jesus, he shows Him as a normal human with emotions through the story of the raising of Lazarus. In this story, Jesus gets emotional just like any humankind, and he grieves at the death of His friend Lazarus.
So, what is the main message about Jesus from the Gospel of John? How did John portray Jesus as a Lamb of God? How would you describe the characteristics of Jesus in the book of John? Why is the book of John different from the other gospels? What is the role of Jesus in the book of John? Is Jesus portrayed as a human in the book of John? Keep reading to learn more.
What is the main message about Jesus from the Gospel of John?
John’s Gospel welcomes us to learn and explore who Jesus really is. He invites us to see how Jesus presented Himself to the people around us through His divine and human nature. We learn from John that Jesus was indeed the true Son of God and Christ who came down as salvation for humankind. (John 20:30-31). “But these things have been written, so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and so that, in believing, you may have life in his name.”
It is through John’s teachings that we learn about the person Jesus, and we consolidate our faith, trust, and belief in Him as the true Son of God and the Messiah who brought salvation to the whole world by dying for us on the cross. Christians are taught to have deep and unwavering faith in Jesus so that we may all share in eternal life.
How did John portray Jesus as a Lamb of God?
In John 1:29, 36), John records, “Behold the Lamb of God, he who takes away the sins of the world.” It is accounted in the bible (John 1:32) that when John the Baptist was baptizing Jesus, he referred to him as the Lamb of God. On the other hand, John, the disciple of Jesus, also calls him the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world.
Theological study shows that by referring to Jesus as a lamb, John was showing him as a sacrificial offering through whom the world would receive salvation. Jesus was going to die for us on the cross, to be crucified for the sins of mankind. In the Jewish custom, the sacrifice of a lamb in the temple showed the significance of salvation on behalf of the sins committed by an offender to appease God. John likens this to the sacrifice Jesus would undergo for the sake of the whole world.
How would you describe the characteristics of Jesus in the book of John?
Through the life of Jesus, as shown in the Gospel of John, we are presented with a chance to draw the true character of Jesus. We learn that Jesus;
- Jesus is the true son of God.
We learn that Jesus is indeed the true son of God. John tells us that Jesus is the Messiah and Christ, as predicted in the Old Testament. Jesus teaches about faith and how one can enter the kingdom of God for eternal life. John calls Him the son of God who was sent by Father by whom all things were made.
- Jesus always tells the truth.
John records that “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6). Jesus is truthful and faithful to the people who like the truth. By being truthful, Christians will learn through him to God, his Father.
- Jesus values everyone and has great value for people’s life.
Jesus has extreme love and affection for humankind. He is full of compassion and feels for his people. When His friend Lazarus died, Jesus joined in the grief and cried for his loss. More to it is that he values life. He raised Lazarus from the dead. Jesus reinforces to us believers that, keeping in faith and walking in His light, we are guaranteed eternal life.
- Jesus is forgiving
In John 20:23, Jesus says, “Those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven them, and those whose sins you shall retain, they are retained” Jesus teaches that in life, we should seek to pardon those who offend us. When we forgive, God in heaven forgives.
Why is the book of John different from the other gospel books?
The book of John is distinctive from the other gospel books as it covers different life spans of Jesus than the others. The Gospel of John dwells much on mystical and theological matters. John helps us to understand that besides Jesus being human in nature, He was also divine. John depicts that through his chapters, we may believe and have immense faith in Jesus as Christ and the son of God and that by believing Him, we may have a long and eternal life. (John 20:30)
John’s Gospel is described as symbolic, not as the other gospels of Marks, Mathew, and Luke. In the Gospel of John, Jesus openly reveals Himself as the divine Son of God and not hiding his revelations and identity as he does in the book of Mark.
Based on this great theological exception, Theologians consider the Gospel of John as spiritual Gospel from ancient times. It gives the lasting image of the divinity of Jesus and how He relates with humankind.
What is the role of Jesus in the book of John?
Jesus has a significance to why He was brought to the world. John shares that Jesus is the Messiah. He says that Jesus has come as a source of salvation to the world. John says that Jesus is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. It implies that he is the true savior of the world and that through him, everyone would receive salvation.
Through the miracles performed by Jesus, we learn that He is our intermediary to the Father. Jesus teaches that no one can go to the Father except through him. He is our great mediator to God. We are called upon to increase our faith in God and believe in Him, for we shall find eternal life.
Is Jesus portrayed as human or God in the book of John?
In the Gospel of John, Jesus is portrayed both as a human and as divine. Through him, the world would receive salvation. He was crucified and hung on the cross for the sake of our sins. This depicts that he is human. By accepting to be humiliated and die on the cross, he revealed himself to us as fellow human beings.
Additionally, Jesus’ deeds of compassion and mercy when He learned of the death of His friend Lazarus. Just like any other human, Jesus fell into grief and cried over the loss of His friend.
The Gospel of John teaches us that in all our ways, in grief and sorrow, Jesus comes close to our help. He feels our pains and relates them to our suffering. We are all reminded to keep trusting in believing in Him for a promised eternal life.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.