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What are the internal and external features to support the theory that the author of the Fourth Gospel was John the Apostle, son of Zebedee?

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Introduction

Maria Louise Hession 61M 2nd Draft What are the internal and external features to support the theory that the author of the Fourth Gospel was John the Apostle, son of Zebedee? We cannot be certain whom the author of the Fourth Gospel was, however we can try to prove the authorship by looking at the internal and external evidence. Firstly in John (21:20-24) Peter asks Jesus about the beloved disciple. " Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them; the one who also had leaned back on his breast at the supper. This is the disciple who is testifying to these things and wrote these things, and we know that his testimony is true." "The disciple whom Jesus loved" is said to be the one who witnessed to things and who wrote things (21:24) that happened in the Fourth Gospel. In other words, he is not only the author but could also be seen as the authority standing behind the gospel. ...read more.

Middle

When Jesus was dying on the cross, around him stood four women and one man, identified as the one whom Jesus loved (19:25-27). Later, the author affirms that the testimony of the man who witnessed Jesus' death is true (19:35); the testimony refers most likely to the traditions about Jesus that have been incorporated into the Gospel of John. This man is most likely "the disciple whom he (Jesus) loved" since he is the only man present at Jesus' crucifixion. The two individuals referred to in John 19:35; 21:24 are no doubt the same man, since they bear the same designation, "the disciple whom Jesus loved." If it is possible to put a name to this man, then the author of the Fourth Gospel can be identified. There is some internal, indirect evidence to consider with respect to the authorship of the Fourth Gospel. The author of the Fourth Gospel is familiar with the geographical features of Palestine He is familiar with Galilee, Samaria and Judea (12:21) ...read more.

Conclusion

The author seems to have written his gospel in Aramaic or a very Semitic type of Greek. However the details relating to the Aramaic/Semitic features of the gospel cause much dispute. The linguistic data suggests that the author's mother tongue was not Greek, but Aramaic. Therefore the author would have the tendency to quote Aramaic words and be influenced by Aramaic grammar when writing in Greek. Also, an author whose first language was Aramaic may have a limited Greek vocabulary and be unable to write Greek except with simplistic style. B.F.Westcott argued that the author of the Fourth Gospel was a Palestinian Jew, an apostle and therefore John son of Zebedee. This conclusion however seem to be a very immense jump. In conclusion the author of the Fourth Gospel seems most likely to be written by John, the apostle. Son of Zebedee. The author would have had to be an apostle of a very close friend of the Twelve, he would have had to have live in Palestine and spoken Aramaic. Therefore it can be said John was the author of the Fourth Gospel. Word Count: 1033 Words ...read more.

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