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LESSON 1 THE BOOK OF THE GOSPEL OF JOHN BIBLE STUDY

Welcome to our Mailbox Bible Study Course. We trust you will enjoy these lessons as much as we did composing them. We are glad to be able to serve the Lord and you in this way. Many are being saved and helped through these simple Bible lessons. We suggest that you try to do one lesson each week; this will keep your interest in them active. This particular course contains twenty four lessons on The Book of The Gospel of John Bible Studies. Read through this lesson carefully and complete the answers to the lesson by clicking on this word here "LESSON AND TEST IN MICROSOFT WORD FORMAT" and then save it to your computer. Once you have answered all the questions in the test, attach the test questions or copy and paste them into an email addressed to email.bible.lessons@gmail.com with your name and email address and send it to us. We will then evaluate and return any corrections to you with your next lesson. On completion of the full course you will receive a beautifully presented certificate. Should you have difficulty opening these files or sending the email please let us know by return email. We suggest that you print these lessons and put them in a binder for future studies.

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Harold Smith

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LESSON 1: THE BOOK OF THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

 

STUDIES IN JOHN'S GOSPEL           by Gertrude Harlow

 

NEVER THIRST AGAIN

John the son of Zebedee was given the privilege of being very close to the Lord Jesus, and of writing the fourth Gospel about the Son of God. The Holy Spirit led John to write the deepest truths in the simplest language. No man can fully grasp all the deep teaching of John's Gospel, yet even new Christians can understand the language, which he used. For these reasons the Gospel of John is an ideal study for women's Bible classes and young people's groups. This book by Gertrud Harlow explains the harder verses in the Gospel and shows how we should live and please the Lord. It also has about ten test questions at the end of each chapter, with answers at the back of the book. This means the individual student can check his own answers while the teacher can review the questions in class.

 

NEVER THIRST AGAIN! This is the promise of the Lord Jesus Christ to any one who will drink the water of life, which He gives freely. Drink, yes, drink abundantly, 0 beloved!

 

INTRODUCTION

God has given us four Gospels in the Bible to tell about the life of our Saviour on earth. Each Gospel shows the Lord Jesus Christ in a different way. Matthew shows Him as the King of the Jews, Matthew 27.37. Mark shows Him as the perfect Servant, Mark 10.45. Luke tells about Him as the Son of Man who loves all people and died for all, Luke 9.22; 19.10. In John's Gospel we see Him as the Son of God who came to live among men, John 12.49; 14.7-9; 16.15. This is the reason why the fourth Gospel was written: to show that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God so that we might believe in Him and be saved, John 19.35; 20.31. Some of the things the Lord Jesus said and did are recorded in all four Gospels, but there are a number of things told in the Gospel of John that are not mentioned in the others. We read only in John that we must be born again, that Christ has gone to prepare a place for us in His Father's house, that we can come to the Father only through Christ, and many other things. Only in this Gospel the Lord Jesus calls Himself:

 

1.         The Bread of Life, 6.35,51.

2.         The Light of the world, 8.12; 9.5.

3.         The Door, 10.7,9.

4.         The Good Shepherd, 10.11,14.

5.         The Resurrection and the Life, 11.25.

6.         The Way, the Truth, and the Life, 14.6.

7.         The real Vine, 15.1,5.

 

WHO WROTE THE FOURTH GOSPEL?

The Holy Spirit controlled the writer of this Gospel and guided him to write what he did. All the writers of the Scriptures were guided in the same way. see 2 Peter 1.21. The writer of the fourth Gospel never called himself by name, but it is generally believed that he was John, the brother James and son of Zebedee, one of the twelve a Matthew 10.2. John was full of joy because he knew Saviour loved him, and so he called himself the disciple Jesus loved, 13.23; 19.26; 20.2; 21.7,20. You and I can call ourselves by that lovely name also, Galatians 2.20.

 

CHRIST, THE WORD OF GOD

 

THE WORD WAS IN THE BEGINNING, 1.1-13

In the beginning was the Word, 1.1. The writer of this Gospel started right at the beginning. When was the beginning? We do not know except that it was before the world was created. At that beginning - whenever it was - the Word was already there, so we know that He was there even before that beginning. This shows us that the Word of God is eternal and has always existed. He had no beginning. This verse also tells us that the Word was with God, that indeed the Word was God! But who was the Word? The Word is another name for the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, see verse 14 of this same chapter. We put our thoughts into words when we want someone else to know what we are thinking. In the same way the Lord Jesus Christ shows us what God is like. God is Spirit, John 4.24, and we cannot see Him with our eyes, but God's Son came to this earth in order to make Him known to men, 1.18. Hebrews 1.2 tells us that God has spoken to us in these last days through His Son. The Word was with God and was God, 1.1. This shows that the Word was a separate Person and was Himself God. God is three in one - God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, and in this verse we see two of them, God the Father and God the Son. Verse 2 repeats the fact that the Word was with God in the beginning, showing that this is a very important fact. Verse 3 gives another proof that Christ, the Word, is God, for only God can create things. Read also Colossians 1.16-17. These verses show very plainly that Christ Himself was not created. They also show that He created everything, without exception. The Word had life in Himself,  He gives live to men, 1.4. In addition He also give light, spiritual light, to show them how they should that life. In John 8.12 the Lord Jesus called Himself the light of  the world. This world is dark because of sin, and people walk  in darkness because they are evil and far away from the Lord Jesus Christ came to shine in this dark we light. The people did not realize who He was but the not able to put out that fight, 1.5. God sent His messenger John to tell the people that the Lord Jesus Christ would come so that they might be ready receive Him and believe in Him, 1.6-7 This John was John the Baptist, not the writer of this Gospel who was also called John. John the Baptist came to bear witness that the Coming One, the Lord Jesus Christ, was really the Light of the 1.8, who shines on all men, 1.9. This One is the real  light who shines on men of every nation. He reveals that all men are sinners because He Himself is pure and sinless. He came into this world, which He Himself had made and was here for 33 years, but the people of the world thought He just an ordinary man, 1.10. Christ came especially to God's chosen people Israel as the Messiah whom God had promised to send, but they refused to receive Him, 1.11. Even so there were some who receive Him and they became God's children, 1.12. verse shows plainly that a person becomes a child of God when he believes in Christ. In the next verse, 1.13, we see that people do not  become members of God's family because their parents were  Christians or because of their own good works. They become children of God because God makes them His children when they believe in His Son.

 

THE WORD BECAME A MAN, 1.14-18

The Word, that is, the Son of God, became a Man. He came to live on this earth, 1.14. He continued to be God when He became a real, sinless, perfect Man, the God-Man. We cannot understand with our human minds how He can be both God and Man, 1 Timothy 3.16, but we believe it by faith. Verse 14 does not mean that God came to live in a man, but that God Himself became Man. He did not just visit people here on earth but actually lived among them and they could see His glory. How could the people see the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ? In the Old Testament people saw God's glory in the form of a bright cloud which showed that God was there, Exodus 40.34; 1 Kings 8.10-11. Three of Christ's disciples saw His glory on the mountain, Matthew 17.1-13, but ordinarily there was no cloud or bright shining light about the Lord Jesus as He walked among men here on earth. How then did men see His glory? They saw it in His gracious words and kindly and righteous acts, and these things proved to them that He was truly the Son of God. In verse 15 we have the words of John the Baptist. The Lord Jesus had not actually begun His work among men but John had been telling the people that Christ would come. The Lord Jesus was born here on earth about six months after John, but He was greater than John because He had always existed. He was not just an ordinary man but the Son of God. The Lord Jesus was full of grace and truth, and out of this fullness He blesses all those who have believed in Him, 1.16. The more grace we receive, the more grace He gives us, one blessing after another. This grace is all we need, 2 Corinthians 12.9, and is always available for us, Hebrews 4.16. Many years before this God had given Israel the law through Moses. The people had to obey the law and were judged if they disobeyed. The law showed that they were sinners because they were not able to keep it. So hundreds of years later God sent His Son into the world to show men His grace and truth, 1.17. The Lord Jesus Christ showed men the truth about themselves, that they were sinners, and the truth about God, that He loves men but hates their sins. He also showed them grace by bearing the punishment for their sins. No one has ever seen God because God is Spirit and does not have a body, but the Lord Jesus Christ made Him known to men when He was here on earth, 1.18. People heard God when they heard the words of the Lord Jesus Christ. They saw God when they saw Christ moving among the people, blessing the children, healing the sick, touching the leper, raising the dead. God has no other Son except the Lord Jesus. He was very close to His Father; He still is and always will be.

 

JOHN THE BAPTIST PREPARED THE PEOPLE  FOR THE COMING OF CHRIST, 1.19-28

 The Old Testament told the people of Israel that some day God would send them a great Deliverer, the Messiah or Christ. Now John the Baptist was in the desert preaching to people that He would come very soon. They should repent of their sins so that they would be ready for His coming, Matthew 3.1-6. Jerusalem was the largest city in Israel at that time. Soon the people of Jerusalem heard about John and so they sent some priests and Levites to find out who he was 1.19. John was a humble man and did not want any honour for himself, 1.20. The Jews believed that Elijah would come back to earth before the Messiah came, Malachi 4.5. They thought that perhaps John was Elijah if he was not the Christ but John denied this also, 1.21. Next they asked John if he  was the prophet. What prophet were they thinking of? In Deuteronomy 18.15 Moses told the people that God would raise up another prophet like himself. The Jews thought that perhaps John was that prophet, but John denied this also. Then the Jews began to get impatient and told John to tell them plainly who he was so that they could take the information to the leaders in Jerusalem, 1.22. So John told them that he was only a voice shouting in the desert telling people to prepare the way for the Lord, as Isaiah had said many years before, 1.23; Isaiah 40.3. Nothing grows in the desert. It was a picture of the people of Israel at that time. They had sinned and gone far away from God and did not bear any fruit for  Him. John called himself a voice because he did not want people to think about him; he only  wanted them to listen to what he had to say. The Lord Jesus Christ was the Word. The Word  is much more important than the voice, but the Word needs a voice to make  Him known to others. We too can prepare the way for the Lord Jesus to enter into people's hearts by being a  voice and telling them about Him. The messengers of the Pharisees were still not satisfied. Now they wanted to know why John was baptizing people. What authority did he have to do so? John did not deny that he baptized with water, but again he turned their thoughts to the Lord Jesus Christ, the One who was standing among them and whom they had not yet recognized. This One was much greater than John and John felt that he was not good enough even to untie the Lord's sandals, 1.24-27. Every great king would have a slave to untie his sandals but John did not think he was good enough even for this. We too do not deserve the honour of serving the Lord, the King of kings, but He is gracious and wants us to serve Him. He wants us to be always busy in our work for Him and assures us that nothing we ever do for Him is without value, 1 Corinthians 15.58. These things took place in Bethabara, also called Bethany, 1.28, but this is not the town of Bethany close to Jerusalem. We do not know exactly where it was.


MICROSOFT WORD FORMAT OF LESSON AND TEST FOR - LESSON 1 (Click on the "Microsoft Word" word in blue to choose this option)


TEST LESSON 1: THE BOOK OF THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Read each question carefully; then, select the correct answer and mark it with a X.

1. The Word:
a) came into being at the beginning. .......................
b) came into being at some other time. .......................
c) did not have a beginning. .......................

2. When the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth He told people that:
a) they are Christians because their parents are Christians. .......................
b) they will go to heaven if they do what is right. .......................
c) they become children of God when they believe. .......................

3. The Lord Jesus:
a) was born before John the Baptist. .......................
b) is full of grace and truth. .......................
c) stopped being God when He came to this earth. .......................

4. John told the Pharisees that:
a) he was a great preacher. .......................
b) he came to forgive people's sins. .......................
c) God sent him to prepare the people for the coming of His Son. .......................

5. We read only in John's gospel that:
a) the Lord Jesus performed a miracle to feed 5000 people. .......................
b) the Lord Jesus opened the eyes of the blind. .......................
c) people must be born again. .......................

TRUE or FALSE

6. All four gospels show us the Lord Jesus Christ in the same way - TRUE................. FALSE ..................

7. The Lord Jesus Christ came in order to show men God's grace and truth. - TRUE................. FALSE ..................

8. The Gospel of John was written to show that the Lord Jesus is the Son of God - TRUE................. FALSE ..................

9. God Himself became a man in order to live among men and so that they might be able to see. - TRUE................. FALSE ..................

10. John the Baptist thought he was just as important as the Lord Jesus. - TRUE................. FALSE ..................


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