- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Fortress Press (April 1, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 080060427X
- ISBN-13: 978-0800604271
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #237,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
+ Free Shipping
The Riddles of the Fourth Gospel: An Introduction to John Paperback – April 1, 2011
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"John's gospel invites readers into a dialog that can last a lifetime. In this engaging introduction, Paul Anderson explores some of the most important aspects of the Fourth Gospel. By asking questions of its theology, historical character, and literary quality, he offers a welcome treatment of the gospel that helps contemporary readers encounter it in a multidimensional way." --Craig Koester, Professor of New Testament, Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota
From the Inside Flap
The Fourth Gospel has played an important role in the course of Christian theology and remains one of the most cherished writings of the New Testament. It is also one of the most controversial and deeply enigmatic, as scholars seek to unravel its mysteries through the application of different historical and literary-critical methods. Paul N. Anderson offers the student an innovative and accessible survey of the historical, literary, and theological "riddles" that continue to preoccupy John's readers. Lucid and generous in its use of sidebars, diagrams, questions for reflection, and annotated bibliography, The Riddles of the Fourth Gospel will guide the beginning or advanced student in their encounter with John.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Finding a solution to cohere the historical, theological and literary contradictions is much more perilous. Anderson's standpoint is clear and controversial. He claims that tensions as a factor of multiple sources falls short in terms of evidence. For him John is essentially a one man's cognitive crisis delivering his message to various audiences. He considers the author to have been a brilliant ecclesiastical writer followed by a less brilliant ecclesiastical refactor.
Anderson's explanations are in my mind the feeble part of the book. I consider that John is a hybrid composition, for reasons that can't be developed here. But readers will gain considerable and clear information from the first part that discloses all the difficulties a learned scholar encounters in John.
Sujaya James, Ph.D.
1. Outlining the Johannine Riddles. Anderson presents, in tabular form, the theological, historical, and literary riddles that are spread throughout the Gospel.
2. Addressing the Johannine Riddles. Who wrote the Fourth Gospel, when, how, and why? Multiple theories are presented, emphasizing origin and character.
3. Interpreting the Johannine Riddles. Anderson takes a stab at answering John's conundrums, and calls for a "fourth quest for Jesus" with special consideration for the historical realism of John's Gospel.
If you're familiar with Anderson's work, you may be tempted to skip certain sections, as much has been covered before, but the emphasis on tension and prepared contradictions--what Paul labels John's "riddles"--forces you to reexamine familiar texts within a directed theme. Anderson drills into us the dialectical thinking of John. The Fourth Gospel appears to make a point of presenting both sides of every theology. Jesus is both the most human and the most divine in this gospel. He is judge, but he judges not. He is equal to the Father but subjective to the Father. He fulfills all prophesies yet promises a future eschatology. Perhaps most frustrating of all to me as a scholar of Johannine writings, John's esoteric, spiritual passages encourage non-literal interpretation, but are liberally peppered with verifiable historical accuracies. These tensions are frustrating but intentional, purposefully forcing us to examine all sides.
My conclusion: This is an important, well-organized book whose careful research demands consideration.
The Riddles of the Fourth Gospel is a meticulously organized, even repetitive scholarly work, complete with text book-like review questions and key terms at the end of each chapter. There are bullet points for everything; I could literally teach a class on this book with no prep time. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a source on this topic, because it has summaries of prior works on the topic, and references to relevant materials. However, I'm not entirely convinced Anderson quite has his theology down right; he seems to insist that the gospel could either be saying Jesus was god, or human, not that he was both, completely, according to the gospel.
Aside from being, as I mentioned, fairly repetitive from the perspective of a less studious reader, this is a very readable book, complete with a brief glossary of potentially difficult terms. Anyone could read it, if self-study were desired. I'm not sure if I agree with all of the assumptions within the content, but there is plenty of emphasis on alternative perspectives and finding your own interpretation, that I have no objection to the overall effect. However, if you are of the type of person uncomfortable with uncertainty, or the possibility of forgetfulness or interpretation by gospel writers regarding Jesus, or speculation on what the actual Jesus may have been like, The Riddles of the Fourth Gospel may not be for you. Other than that, I have to say this might also be a bit heavy for, say, a bible study, unless that is the goal.