The long history of interpretation of the three Johannine letters has been largely characterized, at least since Irenaeus in the late second century, by the assumption that the Elder was addressing the Gnostic heresy. In recent years, particularly with the work of Raymond Brown, attention has been focused on the internal schism within the Johannine (or Beloved Disciple's) community, thus taking the first epistle as a corrective to secessionists' misguided attempts to read the Gospel of John in an qadvanced, q spiritualizing manner.Birger Olsson returns to a less common perspective, one that views the crisis facing the Elder as a wholly qintra-Jewishq problem. The Johannine community comprised Jewish believers who regarded Jesus as the long-promised Messiah of Israel, but at some point in the community's life, under the leadership of one Diotrephes, some members of the community chose to reject this conviction and to entice other members to do likewise. Olsson anchors his thoroughgoing interpretation of the three letters in this conflict among Jewish Christians over the nature of the Messiah and the renewal of Israel's ancient covenant. Among other things, this implies that the letters were written in reverse order of their numbering.Each part in this three-fold presentation is connected to the preceding part. One part in each of the two sections is drawn out, first 1:10a2:2 and then 2:6a8. ... made by both parties: God promises in his own name to make Israel his own people; Israel promises to obey God with their whole heart (Exodus 19a24; 32a 34).
|Title||:||A Commentary on the Letters of John|
|Publisher||:||Wipf and Stock Publishers - 2013-08-13|