The Holy Gospel According to John
The Gospel according to John is quite different in character from the three synoptic gospels. It is highly literary and symbolic. It does not follow the same order or reproduce the same stories as the synoptic gospels. To a much greater degree, it is the product of a developed theological reflection and grows out of a different circle and tradition. It was probably written in the 90s of the first century.
The Gospel of John begins with a magnificent prologue, which states many of the major themes and motifs of the gospel, much as an overture does for a musical work. The prologue proclaims Jesus as the preexistent and incarnate Word of God who has revealed the Father to us. The rest of the first chapter forms the introduction to the gospel proper and consists of the Baptist's testimony about Jesus (there is no baptism of Jesus in this gospel - John simply points him out as the Lamb of God), followed by stories of the call of the first disciples, in which various titles predicated of Jesus in the early church are presented.
A synopsis of each chapter is provided below. Please click on the synopsis of the chapter you wish to read.
Chapter 1 - The Word of God became flesh and dwelt with us. John the Baptist bore witness to him. Andrew told Simon Peter and they followed Jesus.
Chapter 2 - Jesus turned water into wine at a wedding. He drove money-changers from the temple. He said, "Destroy this temple and I will raise it."
Chapter 3 - Jesus told Nicodemus, "Be born again. Whoever believes in the Son will have eternal life." John the Baptist said, "He is above all."
Chapter 4 - Jesus spoke with a Samaritan woman about her husbands. She said, "Can this be the Christ?" Many believed. He healed an official's son.
Chapter 5 - Jesus healed a man at Bethesda. He said, "The Son only does what he sees the Father doing. My works and the Scriptures bear witness."
Chapter 6 - Jesus fed 5,000 men and walked across the sea. He said, "I am the bread of life. My flesh is true food." Many disciples turned back.
Chapter 7 - Jesus went to the feast. The people said, "Is this the Christ?" The chief priests tried to arrest him. He called out, "Come and drink."
Chapter 8 - Jesus did not condemn a woman caught in adultery. The Pharisees questioned him. He said, "If God were your Father you would love me."
Chapter 9 - Jesus healed a blind man on the Sabbath. The Pharisees called the man and threw him out. Jesus said, "I came that the blind may see."
Chapter 10 - Jesus said, "I am the good shepherd. I give my life for the sheep." They asked, "Are you the Christ?" He said, "My sheep follow me."
Chapter 11 - Lazarus died. Jesus went to the tomb and said, "Lazarus, come out." Lazarus came out. The chief priests plotted to put Jesus to death.
Chapter 12 - Jesus rode into Jerusalem. The crowd shouted, "Hosanna!" He said, "The Son of Man must be lifted up. I have come to save the world."
Chapter 13 - Jesus washed the disciples' feet. He said, "One of you will betray me." Judas left. Jesus said, "Love each other as I have loved you."
Chapter 14 - "I am the way, the truth, and the life. I am in the Father and the Father in me. He will give you the Holy Spirit. Do not be afraid."
Chapter 15 - "I am the vine, you are the branches. You are my friends if you do what I command. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you."
Chapter 16 - "The Spirit will convict the world of sin. He will guide you into all truth. Your sorrow will turn to joy. I am going to the Father."
Chapter 17 - Jesus said, "Father, I have revealed your name to those you gave me. Sanctify them in the truth. May all who believe in me be one.
Chapter 18 - Judas betrayed Jesus to the chief priests. Peter denied him. He was sent before Pilate. Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world."
Chapter 19 - The soldiers took Jesus and crucified him. He said, "It is finished." He gave up his spirit. A soldier pierced his side with a spear.
Chapter 20 - Mary went to the tomb and found it empty. Jesus met her. He came and stood among the disciples. Thomas said, "My Lord and my God!"
Chapter 21 - Jesus appeared as the disciples were fishing. He said to Peter, "Do you love me? Feed my sheep." The beloved disciple has testified.