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The Writings of John: A Survey of the Gospel, Epistles, and Apocalypse Hardcover – February 26, 2011


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The Writings of John: A Survey of the Gospel, Epistles, and Apocalypse + The Message of the Prophets: A Survey of the Prophetic and Apocalyptic Books of the Old Testament
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (February 26, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310267374
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310267379
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 7.5 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #156,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

C. Marvin Pate (MA, Wheaton; PhD, Marquette University) taught for thirteen years at Moody Bible Institute. Now he is chair of the department of Christian theology and professor of theology at Ouachita Baptist University. Pate has authored, co-authored, or edited twenty books.

More About the Author

C. Marvin Pate (MA, Wheaton; PhD, Marquette University) taught for thirteen years at Moody Bible Institute. Now he is chair of the department of Christian theology and professor of theology at Ouachita Baptist University. Pate has authored, co-authored, or edited twenty books.

Customer Reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Adam Parker on April 25, 2011
Format: Hardcover
C. Marvin Pate's The Writings of John is an introductory book regarding the Johannine corpus. It covers the Gospel of John, the three Johannine Epistles, as well as the book of Revelation. While the book is intended to be used as a textbook in introductory New Testament classes, it is just as acceptable for personal reading and study. Each chapter is relatively short, and you can tell that Pate put a great deal of effort into ensuring that the book isn't bogged down by technical details while at the same time taking care to cover the relevant and necessary information that any introduction to the writings of John ought to at least touch upon.

In the introduction to each of the Johannine books, Pate spends an adequate amount of time discussing issues of authorship, dating, textual transmission, historical context, as well as theological context. For example, in his introduction to the Gospel, he discusses the Hellenistic religious environment as well as the various theological pressures from Judaism and establishes briefly but effectively that the book was not written in a theo-social vacuum.

I should mention as an aside that Pate does his best to steer clear of theological debates regarding issues such as predestination. In his introduction to the Gospel of John, instead of taking a position on what he calls "eternal security," he simply lists some verses used by each side in defense of their particular view. A safe move no doubt intended to keep a wide readership.

Along the way, he provides quotes from historians such as Josephus in the side-columns which relate to the historical context. These extended quotes are quite appropriate and serve in most cases to reinforce the historical realities being dealt with.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr Conrade Yap on October 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This survey covers all five New Testament books in the New Testament written by John; the gospel of John, the three letters of John, and Revelation. Recognizing the centrality of Christ in its Christology, Soteriology, and Eschatology, and its impact on the formation of creeds and confessions for the Church, this work balances critical scholarship with general commentary, drawn from a variety of sources, including extrabiblical sources such as the Qumran Dead Sea scrolls, the old and new testament Apocrypha, and Pseudepigrapha.

Each of the 57 chapters begin with the same format. It begins with a one page list of objectives for that chapter. Filled with colourful diagrams, tables, and illustrations, it draws out key theological themes, frequent flashbacks to the Old Testament, section by section commentary of the key ideas in John's writings, highlighting contextual information with great clarity and insight. The review questions enable readers to look over the chapter in case they have missed something.

My Thoughts
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This book is a preacher's treasure chest for preaching on anything that is from John's writings. With brilliant drawings and corresponding photo images of the lands, the book brings the gospels, the letters, and revelation alive to the reader. There are so many ready made point by point summary that it helps preachers and teachers be able to communicate the Bible clearly and meaningfully. The most fascinating part for me is the part on Revelation. Pate is able to move in and out of the three genres: apocalyptic, prophetic, and epistolary. There is history and prophecy, major schools of interpretation compared, with brilliant explanation that unpacks complex imagery into understandable ideas.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By J.B. Hughes on July 19, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a difficult writing to assess for a number of reasons. When I first came to this book I had a great deal of excitement because I knew of Dr. Pate and was hoping to glean from his years of experience. Unfortunately, I am sad to say that this book did not at all live up to expectations. Here are a few thoughts about the sections of this books.

The first part begins with his assessment on the Gospel of John. It is generalized but excellent for textbook material. He essentially summarizes quite a bit of John and makes sparse comments about particular passages. I agree with another reviewer who noted his inability to take a position on a number of issues. There is little in his notes that is original but that is not the objective of this book. It is a survey of John's writings and would be good for introduction.

I appreciate the Author's conservative stance on Johannine authorship even though at times it feels like he wants to defect to the Bultmann viewpoint. Nevertheless, he stays true to the idea that John the Apostle is the base for all the teachings and traditions contained in the book. I think where he begins to create confusion is whenever the subject of eschatology comes into play. I am not sure what he was trying to say at times and I get the impression that he didn't either. At the present I did not read the small section on the epistles as I am saving that for a future date. I will come back and adjust the review at that time.

The book of Revelation was a travesty to scholarship everywhere. He tried to create his own hybrid view by combining elements of the preterist, the idealist and the futurist view into his own "eclectic" view. It did not work! I have read a lot of works of eschatology before but never encountered one that was so full of confusion.
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