Cover Image: A Theology of John's Gospel and His Letters

A Theology of John's Gospel and His Letters:
The Word, the Christ, the Son of God (BTNTS)

Andreas Kostenberger (Zondervan, 2009)

Blurb Review by Dr. William W. Klein


This monograph by A. Köstenberger is the inaugural volume in the new Biblical Theology of the New Testament series (BTNT). The BTNT series will eventually consist of eight volumes covering the entire range of documents within the New Testament. The goal of the BTNT series is to show within an evangelical framework how each book within the New Testament contributes to the larger theological message of the New Testament and the Bible as a whole. Each volume within the BTNT series will include:

  1. an overview of recent scholarly literature;
  2. a discussion of important introductory issues;
  3. a thematic commentary;
  4. a discussion of individual themes within each book ;
  5. a discussion of how each book or set of books is related to the rest of the New Testament and the entire Bible.

Köstenberger is truly no stranger to the Gospel of John and has already written a number of articles, books, and commentaries on the "spiritual Gospel." In this book, he extends his work on the writings of the Apostle John to include 1-3 John. "A Theology of John's Gospel and Letters" primarily addresses the historical settings of John's Gospel and Letters, their literary characteristics, their biblical-theological content, and their relationship to the remainder of the New Testament writings. This is a mammoth book on the Johannine writings and no one preaching, teaching, or studying the Gospel or Letters of John should be without it. Highly recommended.


Part 1: The Historical Framework for Johannine Theology

1.      Johannine Theology and the Historical Setting of John's Gospel and Letters

Part 2: Literary Foundations for Johannine Theology

2. The Genre of John's Gospel and Letters

3. Linguistic and Literary Dimension of John's Gospels and Letters

4. A Literary-Theological Reading of John's Gospel

5. A Literary-Theological Reading of John's Letters

Part 3: Major Themes in Johannine Theology

A. Prologomena

6. John's Worldview and Use of Scripture

B. The End (Purpose: 20:30-31)

7. The Messiah and His Signs

C. The Beginning (Introduction: 1:1-18)

8. The Word: Creation and New Creation

9. God: Father, Son, and Spirit

10. Salvation History: Jesus' Fulfillment of Festal Symbolism

11. The Cosmic Trial Motif: The World, the Jews, and the Witnesses to Jesus

12. The New Messianic Community: Divine Sovereignty and Human Responsibility

D. The Middle (Preamble to Part Two: 13:1-3)

13. The Johannine Love Ethic

14. John's Theology of the Cross

15. John's Trinitarian Mission Theology

Part 4: Johannine Theology and the Canon of Scripture

16. The Theology of John and Other New Testament Voices

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