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Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament
John (the Apostle)
JOHN (THE APOSTLE).—As the Gospels are but memorabilia of Jesus, giving relatively but meagre accounts of His life and works, it is to be expected that they can afford us only glimpses of the Apostles. Such is the case; and, while a few more references are made to Peter, James, and John than to the others, we have no such material as allows any more than a fragmentary account of any one. Tradition has, in the case of each Apostle, added to the Scripture narrative a story of subsequent activity and fate. For convenience of reference, therefore, to all that is known of John we may group the materials under the following heads: (1) those found in the Scriptures; (2) those given us by tradition. To the account thus obtained we shall add a brief delineation of his character.
i. The Testimony of Scripture.—Preliminary to giving the facts in their chronological order, it is well to call attention to the almost universal identification of the unnamed disciple of the Fourth Gospel with John.* [Note: Delff ha with considerable force advanced and defended the theory that ‘the disciple whom Jesus loved’ was not the Apostle John, but a younger disciple, who shared all the privileges of the Twelve, but who was a native of Jerusalem and a member of the higher aristocracy. While this theory explains satisfactorily some of the facts given in the Gospels, it is beset with grave difficulties.]
John is first introduced to us as a disciple of John the Baptist (John 1:35). How long he had been with this stern preacher of the desert we do not know, but the time was one of preparation for the higher discipleship soon to follow. After the Temptation Jesus returned to the Jordan. Then and there John first met Jesus, and, with Andrew, showed such deep interest in Him that He invited them to go with Him to His abode. So critical was the hour when they went—four o’clock in the afternoon—that it was remembered long years after (John 1:36-40). John’s home was in Galilee (probably at Bethsaida), where his father, Zebedee, a man apparently of means (Mark 1:20), was busy as a fisherman on the Lake. His mother was Salome (cf. Matthew 27:56 with Mark 15:40). On the next day after his first meeting with Jesus, John accompanied Him to Galileé, and was present at the marriage feast at Cana (John 2:1-11). From Cana they went to Capernaum, in order, perhaps, to make ready for going up to Jerusalem to the Passover. At this first Passover Jesus cleansed the Temple, and also ‘did signs’ which awakened popular interest. Here also He conversed with Nicodemus (John 2:13 to John 3:21). The capital had not shown itself ready for the work He wished to do, so Jesus withdrew into the country of Judaea and summoned the people to the baptism of repentance, just as the Baptist himself was doing. John was with Him all through this sojourn of over seven months in Judaea, and doubtless assisted in the administering of the baptismal rite, for Jesus did not Himself baptize (John 4:2). At the end of this period Jesus returned by way of Samaria to Galilee. On the way occurred the incident of the Samaritan woman, so fully depicted for us in the Fourth Gospel (John 4:1-42). Once more the Master came to Cana, and while there cured the nobleman’s son (John 4:46-54). For a brief time John seems now to have been at home, and to have engaged in his customary business of fishing; but the Baptist’s imprisonment was the signal to Jesus for more vigorous work, and He appeared at the Lake-side to call to be His permanent escort the men who had already acknowledged Him and given Him some service (Mark 1:16-20, Matthew 4:18-22, Luke 5:1-11). John now entered upon that second stage of discipleship which was to prepare him for his life-work. The record of events which shows Jesus performing miracles and preaching in the towns and villages of Galilee is the record of John’s training (see Mark 1:21 to Mark 2:22). When, some time afterwards, John was chosen to the Apostolate (Mark 3:13-19 a, Matthew 10:2-4, Luke 6:12-19), it was but to confirm him in the position he had already occupied, and to make more definite his mission. At this time Jesus called him and his brother Boanerges, that is, ‘sons of thunder’ (Mark 3:17). See Boanerges.
As from this time onwards the most of John’s experiences were common to all the Apostles, it is necessary to mark only those which were in any way exceptional for him. They are sufficient to show that he was among the most prominent of the little band, and that he was especially close in friendship to the Master. With Peter and James he saw the raising of Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5:37, Luke 8:51). These three were with Jesus upon the Mount of Transfiguration (Mark 9:2, Matthew 17:1, Luke 9:28). It was John who ‘answered and said, Master we saw one casting out devils in thy name: and we forbade him, because he followeth not with us’ (Mark 9:38, Luke 9:49). It was he and James who wished to call down fire upon an inhospitable Samaritan village (Luke 9:54). His mistaken ambition for high place at the side of his Master is recorded in Mark 10:37, Matthew 20:21. He took part in the questioning about the time for the fulfilment of the solemn prophecies concerning Jerusalem (Mark 13:3). He and Peter were sent to make ready the Passover (Luke 22:8). At the supper itself he reclined ‘in Jesus’ bosom’ (see art. Bosom), and asked Him who it was that was to be the betrayer (John 13:23-25). In the garden of Gethsemane he was, with Peter and James, near his Master (Mark 14:33, Matthew 26:37). Panic-stricken, he fled with all the other disciples at the time of the arrest (Matthew 26:56), but soon recovered himself, and followed the procession to the palace of the high priest (John 18:15). Being known to the high priest, he was admitted to the court of the palace, and secured entrance for Peter (v. 16). Faithful now to the last, he stood near the cross, and there received the commission to care for the mother of Jesus (John 19:26-27). On the morning of the resurrection Mary Magdalene tells him and Peter of the empty grave, and they hasten together to the spot (John 20:2-3). In the account of the appearance of the risen Lord in Galilee (John 21:2-7) the ‘sons of Zebedee’ have special mention, and again in the closing scene and words of the Fourth Gospel the impression that he should not die before the Lord’s coming is corrected, and the truthfulness of his witness as given in this Gospel confirmed (John 21:20-24).
Outside of the Gospels there are but few references to him in the NT. In the Acts he appears twice in the company of Peter. As they were going together, at the hour of prayer, to the Temple, they met a man, lame from birth, at the Beautiful Gate, and cured him. The deed caused great excitement, and a large crowd gathered around them in Solomon’s porch. While they were speaking to the people the authorities came, and ‘being sore troubled because they taught the people,’ arrested them, and on the following day brought them before the Sanhedrin (Acts 4:3). Later, he and Peter were sent to Samaria to those who had received the word of God under Philip’s ministry, and ‘they prayed for these that they might receive the Holy Ghost’ (Acts 8:14; Acts 8:16). About a.d. 50 we find John in Jerusalem, for at that time Paul meets him there and consults with him regarding his work among the Gentiles (Galatians 2:1-9). He was at this time one of the pillars of the Church. The only other mention of him in the NT is in Revelation 1:4; Revelation 1:9
ii. The testimony of tradition
1. Regarding John’s residence in Ephesus.—From the time of his meeting with Paul in Jerusalem until his activity in later life at Ephesus, we have no certain knowledge of the Apostle. Nicephorus (Historia Ecclesiastica ii. 2) tells us that Mary lived with John in Jerusalem for eleven years after the death of the Lord. There is nothing unlikely in this story, unless it be, as Godet suggests, that ‘his own home’ (John 19:27) was in Galilee rather than in the capital, in which case there would be an explanation of the Apostle’s absence at the time of Paul’s first visit to the city (Galatians 1:18-19). It is but conjecture, however, which fixes the date of his final departure from Jerusalem, though we know that he was not there when Paul came for the last time (Acts 21:18 ff.), and that the signs of the impending destruction of the city caused all the Christians to retire to Pella, e. 68 a.d. (Eus. Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 5. 3). It is of more moment to inquire why he should go to Ephesus, and in answer two reasons may be given: (a) the importance of this city as a centre for missionary activity; and (b) the necessity of carrying on and developing the work of Paul. In the latter part of the 1st cent. ‘the Church’s centre of gravity was no longer at Jerusalem; it was not yet at Rome; it was at Ephesus’ (Thiersch, quoted by Godet, Com. on John, vol. i. p. 45). Not only within the borders of this city had Christianity made a marked impression, but all about were cities in which the Church had been established. The seven letters in the Apocalypse enable us to see what ceaseless vigilance and intelligent care were needed to protect these Churches from error in doctrine, and to keep them faithful in life. No louder call for Apostolic service could be given than this part of the world was then giving, and, as far as tradition is concerned, there can be little doubt that John responded to this call. Just at this point, however, criticism, in the interest of its discussions regarding the authorship of the Fourth Gospel, has taken its stand, and tried to make it appear that tradition is untrustworthy. The Ephesian residence of John is therefore a critical matter, and as such must be given somewhat extended attention. The main witnesses for the common tradition are Irenaeus, Polycrates (Bishop of Ephesus), and Clement of Alexandria.
(a) Irenaeus bears repeated testimony to the Apostle’s presence in Asia, and says explicitly:
‘Afterwards’ (i.e. after the first three) ‘John the disciple of the Lord, who also lay on His breast, likewise published a Gospel while dwelling at Ephesus’ (adv. Haer. iii. 1). Polycarp was not only instructed by the Apostles, and had intercourse with many who had seen Christ, but he was also installed by the Apostles as Bishop in Asia in the Church at Smyrna. ‘We also saw him (Polycarp) in our earliest youth, for he lived very long, and left this life at a great age, having suffered a glorious and brilliant martyrdom, and having always taught what he had learned from the Apostles.’ Also the Church at Ephesus, founded by Paul, and with which John lived till Trajan’s time (98–117), ‘is a truthful witness to the tradition of the Apostles’ (ib. iii. 3, 4). In a letter to Florinus, a part of which has been preserved by Eusebius (Historia Ecclesiastica v. 20), Irenaeus tells of his vivid recollections of Polycarp. The way of the venerable martyr’s life, his bodily form, the discourses he gave to the people, and the account which he gave of his intercourse with John and with the rest who had seen the Lord, were clearer to him (Irenaeus) in memory than many recent experiences. Again, when Victor the Bishop of Rome excommunicated the Quartodeciman Churches, Irenaeus wrote admonishing the Bishop, and, in the course of what he had to say, referred to the difference between Anicetus and Polycarp over the Paschal question, in these words: ‘Anicetus could not persuade Polycarp not to observe what he had always observed with John the disciple of our Lord and the other Apostles with whom he had associated’ (Eus. Historia Ecclesiastica v. 24).
The value of all this testimony is enhanced when one marks the overlapping of lives which is here evident. Polycarp suffered martyrdom in the year a.d. 155 at the age of 86. He was born, therefore, in the year 69. If John lived until Trajan’s time, it were easily possible for the two to have associated with each other. Irenaeus while a boy (12–18 years of age) listened with peculiar and observant attentiveness to Polycarp. These three names cover over a century. They link together in such a manner the experiences of personal associations and reverent memories that the evidence for John’s presence in Ephesus seems well-nigh conclusive. Its cogency, however, is supposed to be greatly weakened by two important considerations: (a) the silence among older writers regarding the Ephesian residence, and (b) the possible confusion, on the part of Irenaeus, of John the Apostle with John the Presbyter. At first sight the silence of Polycarp and Ignatius is surprising, but it is not beyond explanation. Polycarp’s letter is to the Philippian Church, and calls for no reference to John. The absence of all mention of the Apostle in the Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians is not so easy to account for, but an argument from silence is precarious when one considers how sparingly he brings in even the name of Paul. It is apparently the similarity of their fortunes which leads him to speak of this Apostle at all, for just as Paul had sent for the elders of the Ephesian Church to meet him at Miletus on his way to imprisonment in Rome, so Ignatius at Smyrna received a delegation from Ephesus (Ephes. 12). This would exclude any reference to John; and in view of all other evidence, it can be as certainly affirmed, as it can be denied, that the general reference in the previous section covers the name of John. This reference is, ‘May I be found in the lot of the Christians of Ephesus, who have always been of the same mind with the Apostles through the power of Jesus Christ’ (Ephes. 11). When, moreover, one takes into account the scantiness of the remains of this early period, the probable growth of John’s reputation during the 2nd century, and the prevalence in the Ignatian Epistles themselves of a Johannine type of teaching (see von der Goltz’s ‘Ignatius von Antiochien als Christ und Theolog’ in TU [Note: U Texte und Untersuehungen.] , Bd. xii. ), the argument from silence loses much of its force. The other consideration urged against the testimony of Irenaeus is really a seconding of the correction made by Eusebius of the declaration of Irenaeus that ‘Papias was a hearer of John and a companion of Polycarp’ (adv. Haer. v. 33. 4).* [Note: This objection is urged by Keim, Harnack, Holtzmanu, and other modern critics in their discussion of the authorship of John’s Gospel.] The words of Eusebius are found in his History, iii. 39. After quoting the above words from Irenaeus, he says, ‘But Papias himself by no means declares that he was himself a hearer and eye-witness of the holy Apostles’; and then he goes on to infer that it was the Presbyter John who was meant in the statement of Irenaeus. This brings us to the examination of the witness of Papias in its bearing upon the whole question. In his preface to his Expositions of the Oracles of the Lord he says:
‘But I shall not hesitate also to put down for you along with my interpretations whatsoever things I have at any time learned carefully from the elders and carefully remembered, guaranteeing their truth. For I did not, like the multitude, take pleasure in those that speak much, but in those that speak the truth; not in those that relate strange commandments, but in those that deliver the commandments given by the Lord to faith and springing from the truth itself. If, then, anyone came who had been a follower of the elders, I questioned him in regard to the words of the elders—what Andrew or what Peter said, or what was said by Philip, or by Thomas, or by James, or by John, or by Matthew, or by any other of the disciples of the Lord, and what things Aristion and the presbyter John, the disciples of the Lord, say. For I did not think that what was to be gotten from the books would profit me as much as what came from the living and abiding voice’ (Eus. Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 39).
A just interpretation of these words must allow for a distinction between the Apostle John and the Presbyter John, but the inference based on the tense of the verb in the sentence, ‘What things Aristion and the Presbyter John, the disciples of the Lord, say,’—that Papias was actually a hearer of the Presbyter,—is very questionable. Much discussion has been given to the import of this latter part of Papias’ preface. A thoroughly satisfactory understanding is, however, that which makes these words we have just quoted refer not to the spoken witness, but to the written testimony of Aristion and the Presbyter John.* [Note: See Drummond, The Character and authorship of the Fourth Gospel, pp. 199–204.] In his search for enlightenment Papias inquired after the unwritten sayings of all referred to except Aristion and John the Presbyter. In their case his inquiry was concerning their written sayings about which there might be some doubt. ‘The books,’ bearing possibly such titles as ‘Narratives of Aristion,’ or ‘Traditions of the Presbyter John,’ needed confirmation by competent witnesses. Papias had not the same confidence in them as in oral reports. Points which confirm this understanding are (1) the hesitation of Eusebius about his own inference that Papias was an actual hearer of John the Presbyter [‘at least he mentions them frequently by name, and gives their traditions in writing’ (Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 39)]; (2) the suggested antitheses in the phrases ‘his own writing’ and ‘unwritten tradition,’ which are found in the accounts of the sources of Papias later on in the same section (Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 39: ‘The same author has communicated also other things that came to him as from unwritten tradition’; ‘but he also commits to his own writing other narratives of the sayings of the Lord of the aforesaid Aristion and traditions of the Presbyter John’). ‘His own writing’ suggests somebody else’s writing; the ‘unwritten tradition’ suggests written tradition. If this interpretation of the words of Papias be true, then it affords no evidence that Papias was a hearer of the Presbyter John. Indeed, it does not require us to think that he was living at the time the words of Papias were written, or that he was even ever in Ephesus at all. The only support we have for this last supposition is Dionysius of Alexandria, who in the interests of the authorship of the Apocalypse by some other John than the Apostle cites the tradition that ‘there are two monuments in Ephesus, each bearing the name of John.’
We come hack now to Irenaeus. The statement which he makes regarding the relationship of Papias to the Apostle John and to Polycarp is not derived from the preface of Papias (see above), and if there is no possible confusion in the two Johns, we need only ask what value the positive statement of Irenaeus really has. Recall for a moment his reference to Polycarp. If these words are true, and there is no reason to doubt them, then it was no mere passing acquaintance which Irenaeus had with Polycarp. He had carefully observed him, and attentively listened to his discourses. Can it be possible that he understood him, whenever he spoke of John, to be referring to John the Presbyter, and was Polycarp himself talking of his intercourse with John the Presbyter? Such confusion as this on the part of men so intimately related is quite improbable. Certainly it is equally improbable that, at the early time of Polycarp, John the Presbyter should have become such a figure in Ephesus that Polycarp could speak of him exactly as if he were John the Apostle. There is therefore no sufficient reason for doubting the testimony of Irenaeus.
(b) In turning to the witness of Polycrates, it is well to note that he was Bishop of Ephesus, had seven relatives who were bishops, and was at the time of his letter to Victor, Bishop of Rome, an old enough man to have been living at the time of Polycarp. He was therefore in a position to know fully whereof he wrote. This fact of the continuity of experiences as lying behind these several testimonies needs repeated emphasis. In his letter to Victor (see Eus. Historia Ecclesiastica v. 24) he is writing upon the Quartodeciman question, and citing his authorities for the observance of the ‘fourteenth day of the Passover according to the Gospel.’ Among these he places ‘John, who was both a witness and a teacher who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord, and being a priest wore the sacerdotal plate. He fell asleep at Ephesus.’
The reference to one ‘who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord’ seems to point unmistakably to the Apostle, but two statements of Polycrates seem to some to run counter to this: (1) That he was a priest and wore the sacerdotal plate (τό πεταλον). From the fact that Epiphanius (Haer, xxvii. 14) says the same of James the brother of the Lord, it is probably a purely figurative statement, indicating the exalted and revered position of these men among their Christian brethren. (2) The other counter-statement is derived from the notice given of Philip in this same letter. It is claimed that Polycrates has clearly confused the Apostles and Evangelists, hence he may have in the same way confused John the Apostle with John the Presbyter. The whole question turns upon the allusion to the daughters of Philip. Briefly stated, the disputed evidence is this. Papias, the earliest witness, places Philip among the Apostles (Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 39). Then he goes on to relate a wonderful tale which he heard from the daughters of Philip. There is no indication whatever that this is not the same Philip just referred to. Polycrates now follows with his testimony that among those who had died in Asia was ‘Philip, one of the Twelve Apostles, who sleeps in Hierapolis, and his two virgin daughters and another daughter who lived in the Holy Spirit and now rests at Ephesus’ (Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 31). Again the reference to the Apostle is clear. Clement of Alexandria declares that the Apostles Peter and Philip had children, and that Philip gave his daughters to husbands (Strom. iii. 6). From all this it is clear that the Apostle Philip had daughters. So far there seems to be no confusion. If this comes in at all, it appears in a statement of Proclus, who, speaking of the death of Philip and his daughters, says: ‘After this arose four prophetesses, the daughters of Philip, at Hierapolis in Asia. Their tomb is there, and the tomb of their father’ (Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 31). The close resemblance of this record to the statement in Acts 21:9 makes it appear that the Evangelist is referred to; but even if the identification of the two Philips be here allowed, it is made comparatively late, and need not involve Polycrates. ‘The report of Polycrates deserves our credence rather than that of Proclus, because, in the first place, Polycrates was earlier than Proclua; in the second place, because his report is more exact, and it is hard to imagine how, if all four were buried in one place, the more detailed report of Polycrates could have arisen, while on the other hand it is quite easy to explain the rise of the more general but inexact account of Proclus’ (McGiffert on Eusebius, in loco.). It should be noted also that we have in Polycrates, as a contemporary of Irenaeus, an independent witness.
(c) It is in connexion with the story of the young convert who subsequently became a robber that Clement of Alexandria speaks of John’s residence in Asia. The value of this testimony lies in the fact that Clement, in gathering memoranda to be ‘stored up against old age as a remedy against forgetfulness,’ had collected traditions handed down ‘from the holy Apostles Peter, James, John, and Paul, the sons receiving it from the father.’ As Drummond says of this witness, ‘It seems probable that we have here a distinct line of tradition which affords independent confirmation of the statements of Irenaeus and Polycrates.’ The clearness, positiveness, and fulness of the witness of these three, taken together with the personal relations involved, affords adequate basis for the general belief of the Church that in the latter part of his life John made his home in Ephesus.
2. Regarding John’s banishment to Patmos.—The discussion of the deliverances of tradition in regard to John’s exile in Patmos is vitally connected with the authorship of the Apocalypse (see art. ‘John, Gospel of,’ in Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible ii. 707 ff.). The references to this fact are quite numerous in the Fathers, and begin with Clement of Alexandria (a.d. 190). Tertullian, Origen, Eusebius, Epiphanius, Jerome all speak of it, but do not agree as to the time of it. Epiphanius (Haer. 12) assigns it to the reign of Claudius, while Clement of Alexandria, Eusebius, and Jerome place it in the reign of Domitian. Internal evidence from the Apocalypse itself favours an early time, while tradition is explicit about the later date. All testimonies to the exile are probably based upon the statement found in Revelation 1:9, and this gives no real foundation for any banishment at all. If John was in Patmos, it may be that he went thither, as Weiss supposes, to find a religious retreat, or, as others think, to avoid persecution.
3. Regarding John’s death.—In accord with the statement of Irenaeus that ‘John remained among them (the disciples) in Asia up to the time of Trajan’ (adv. Haer. ii. 22), it has been generally believed that the Apostle lived to a ripe old age, and died quietly at Ephesus. Of late this opinion has been earnestly disputed, on the basis of a statement found in the Chronicle of Georgius Hamartolos (9th cent.), which reads, ‘Papias, Bishop of Hierapolis, declares in the second book of the Oracles of the Lord that John was put to death by the Jews.’ This testimony has been confirmed by the de Boor Fragment, which expressly says that Papias tells in his second book of the death of James and John at the hands of the Jews. Of course, if John the Apostle died in this way, there is nothing left but to take some other John as the John of Ephesus; and all the testimony of Irenaeus, Polycrates, and Clement of Alexandria has a confusion of names underlying it; also the John of the Apostolic council (Galatians 2:9) was not the son of Zebedee. All this is by no means likely. Various attempts have been made to account for the record of Georgius—such as Lightfoot’s supposition of a lacuna, which was later filled in as we now have it (see Essay on Supernatural Religion, p. 211 ff.); or Zahn’s (Forsch. vi. 147–151) of an interpolation, and that Papias was really referring to the Baptist; but the more probable explanation is that the statement arose from a desire to find a fulfilment of Mark 10:38-39, and a mistaken interpretation of the word μαρτυρῶν, which in its earlier sense did not necessarily involve death. It is certainly not easy to understand why Eusebius and others ignored the fact, if such it was.
Thus far we have sought to get at the real facts of tradition. It will surprise no one to know that the life of one so eminent as John was embellished with all manner of legends, such as his meeting with Cerinthus in the bath-house at Ephesus (adv. Haer. iii. 3, 4); his being carried in extreme old age to the church, and saying, ‘Little children, love one another’ (Jerome, Com. ad Gal. vi. 11); his recovery of the young robber from his life of shame (Eus. Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 23); his immersion in a caldron of boiling oil (Tert. Praescript. Haer. ch. xxvi.); and a number of others. Some of them may have germs of truth in them. They all seek in some way to illustrate the noble character of the man, or to interpret the prophecy of the Gospels regarding his earthly destiny.
iii. The character of John.—It is commonly thought that John was of a gentle, contemplative nature, and almost effeminate in character. Contemplative he was, and the Gospel is but an expression of his profound meditation upon the character and work of his Master; but a moment’s reflexion upon some of the scenes of the Gospels (see Matthew 20:20-24, Luke 9:49; Luke 9:54), in correspondence with which are some of the legends regarding his later life, will show that this Apostle was, at least in earlier life, impetuous, intolerant, and ambitious. Doubtless he was effectively moulded by the Spirit of Christ during his long discipleship, but he was always stern and uncompromising in his hatred of evil and in his defence of truth. He loved with a strong, passionate devotion, and he hated all wrong and untruth as only one can who understands as profoundly as he did the significance of his Lord and His teaching. Because of his profound understanding, he writes as one who has an immediate perception of truth. He does not reason as does Paul. He saw ‘the King in his beauty,’ or, to use his own words, ‘the glory of the only-begotten of the Father’ (John 1:14). His strength and devotion made him courageous; his affection and sympathy made him tender and abundantly helpful. His was the finest type of strong manhood made beautiful by spiritual purity.
Literature.—Among the more recent works which discuss the Ephesian residence of John, we would call attention to the following: James Drummond, The Character and Authorship of the Fourth Gospel; V. H. Stanton, The Gospels as Historical Documents; W. Sanday, The Criticism of the Fourth Gospel; A. C. McGiffert, The Apostolic Age; Encyc. Bibl. art. ‘John, Son of Zebedee’; Hasting's Dictionary of the Bible, art. ‘John, the Apostle’; Harnack, Chronol. der Altehrist. Lit. bis Eusebius, pp. 320–340, 656–680; Keim, Gesch. Jesu von Nazara, English translation i. pp. 211–232.
James S. Riggs.
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Hastings, James. Entry for 'John (the Apostle)'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hdn/j/john-the-apostle.html. 1906-1918.