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The Strong Possibility That Lazar Wrote the Fourth Gospel
(10-25-2016, 12:27 AM)Thirdwoe Wrote: ... You can go to all corners of the earth, and no matter what part of the ancient Church that has survived down to this day, and no matter how little they have been in contact with each other through the centuries, they all say the same thing...and they have said it from the beginning.

John The Apostle of Christ wrote The Gospel that bares his name.

But, of course it is God's Words that inspired and moved him to write.

Thank you for this reply, Chuck. I respect your traditional position immensely.   Likewise, I think there is a wonderful value in the perspective Distazo highlighted:

(10-25-2016, 07:15 AM)distazo Wrote: ...The reason is known, Yeshu was the center, not the apostle or disciple. Tradition is not wrong on this, who were the writers, is best given by the most ancient records.

We are blessed to have the Peshitta text of the fourth gospel. 

One of my favorite traditions is Christmas, even though logically (and through research) I've found December 25 itself is not the most likely date for the Messiah’s birth.  Still, I’ve observed the consensus on December 25 has created one of the most wonderful things on this planet, as happy children and families come together on a special day to sing the gospel.  It’s an experience of peace and joy, born from consensus

Now, I’m aware of course that Christmas can get misused (i.e., over-consumerism, mistranslations of the gospel), but I see the holiday can also be experienced positively too.  So the key, I think, is what we actually accomplish with our consensus, rather than tradition/consensus for its own sake.  

Indeed, I think that was a key part of the Messiah's message on earth in the first century, during a time in Jerusalem when traditions had power outside their rightful place.

In a world of uncertainty about Christian traditions, I’m reminded of Matthew 18:18-20

ܘܐܡܝܢ ܐܡܪ ܐܢܐ ܠܟܘܢ ܕܟܠ ܡܐ ܕܬܐܣܪܘܢ ܒܐܪܥܐ ܢܗܘܐ ܐܣܝܪ ܒܫܡܝܐ ܘܡܕܡ ܕܬܫܪܘܢ ܒܐܪܥܐ ܢܗܘܐ ܫܪܐ ܒܫܡܝܐ ܬܘܒ ܐܡܪܢܐ ܠܟܘܢ ܕܐܢ ܬܪܝܢ ܡܢܟܘܢ ܢܫܬܘܘܢ ܒܐܪܥܐ ܥܠ ܟܠ ܨܒܘ ܕܢܫܐܠܘܢ ܢܗܘܐ ܠܗܘܢ ܡܢ ܠܘܬ ܐܒܝ ܕܒܫܡܝܐ ܐܝܟܐ ܓܝܪ ܕܬܪܝܢ ܐܘ ܬܠܬܐ ܟܢܝܫܝܢ ܒܫܡܝ ܬܡܢ ܐܢܐ ܒܝܢܬܗܘܢ

(“And truly I say to you, that anything that you are binding in the earth will be bound in heaven. And anything that you are releasing in the earth will be released in heaven. Again I say to you, that if two from you will be agreeing in the earth about any will, that they request, will be to them from toward my Father, He in heaven. For where two or three are assembled in my name, there I am between them.")

I think one of the key historical points on the fourth gospel's journey to acceptance is that it helped unite the Orthodox Christians with Gnostic Christians. They united in Yahshua.   

Many scholars have written papers trying to piece together that relationship among 1st Century Christian communities.  Probably the most famous of those scholars was a Catholic named Raymond E. Brown.  Here is a brief historical summary I found online about his work and the context of the fourth gospel:

Quote:The oldest known commentary on the Fourth Gospel is that of the Gnostic Heracleon (d. 180). The Valentinian Gnostics appropriated the Fourth Gospel to such an extent that Irenaeus of Lyons (d. 202) had to refute their exegesis of it. [Raymond] Brown well notes the relationship between the Fourth Gospel and the early Christian Gnostics when he writes that there is "abundant evidence of familiarity with Johannine ideas in the...gnostic library from Nag Hammadi" (1979: 147). In contrast to this, Brown points out that clear use of the Fourth Gospel in the early church by "orthodox" sources is difficult to prove (1979: 148). This would seem to suggest that the contents of the Fourth Gospel, at one point, were not attractive to "orthodox" Christians yet very attractive to Gnostic Christians for some reason. In fact, the earliest indisputable "orthodox" use of the Fourth Gospel was by Theophilus of Antioch, c. 180 A.D., in his Apology to Autolycus.

The popularity of the Fourth Gospel among Gnostics made it important for the early church to pursue the question of its apostolic authorship (Perkins: 946). It was Irenaeus who defended the apostolicity of the Fourth Gospel by appealing to a tradition circulating in Asia Minor which, he claimed, linked John of Zebedee to the Fourth Gospel. The testimony of Irenaeus, however, makes for very tenuous evidence establishing John of Zebedee as the Fourth Gospel's author. First of all, it turned out that Irenaeus confused John of Zebedee with a presbyter from Asia Minor who was also named John. Secondly, Irenaeus claimed that he got his information about Johannine authorship of the Fourth Gospel when he was a child from Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna (d. 156) (Perkins: 946). The church tradition that established John as the author of the Fourth Gospel was based, primarily, on Irenaeus' childhood recollections!

I would love to read additional reference points from the Church of the East that can help put the fourth gospel authorship into perspective.  Indeed, the western scholars relying on Greek will naturally be limited in their consideration of the Aramaic source text.

(10-25-2016, 07:15 AM)distazo Wrote: ...there is not just 'one person', loved by Yeshu, but many were loved. This is the character of His Love.
There is another case where Yeshu expressed love in Marc 10:21.  ܝܶܫܽܘܥ ܕ݁ܶܝܢ ܚܳܪ ܒ݁ܶܗ ܘܰܐܚܒ݂ܶܗ
Should we then conclude this must have been Laazar? Smile

Thank you for emphasizing this point, Distazo, I agree - many were loved by the Messiah, and that is indeed the character of His love.  

I think Mark 10:21 can be a wonderful mystery in its context, as the young man is anonymous.  I've read some scholars who have made a case that this young man was Lazar, as was the (also anonymous) young man in Mark 14:51.  Perhaps.  I don't see any clear way to answer these questions one way or the other.  I do like your answer though, "there is not just 'one person', loved by Yeshu, but many were loved. This is the character of His Love."

I feel that really gets to the heart of the matter.  I might even say it is the reconciliation of brothers by their consensus on the chosen one, the Messiah.

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RE: The Strong Possibility That Lazar Wrote the Fourth Gospel - by gregglaser - 10-28-2016, 07:19 PM

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