NEW RELEASE: Biblical Studies from the CBA
Come and See: Discipleship in the Gospel of John
by Sherri Brown
Come and See explores the invitations and imperatives embedded across the Gospel of John as the Fourth Evangelist draws audiences into his story of the good news. Through both narration and the direct calls of Jesus to those he encounters, characters in the Gospel and audiences of the Gospel are beckoned to deeper relationship with God through Jesus and challenged to open themselves to what God is doing in their lives right now. Indeed, Jesus' first words of the Gospel are the query to potential disciples, "What are you seeking?" This question sets the tone for the invitation offered as an imperative, "Come and see," made to all potential disciples (1:38–39). The two primary commandments presented across Jesus' ministry are to receive and believe Jesus as Christ and Son of God which is manifested in abiding and loving one another in community (1:12; 13:34–35). Further, Jesus summons those who challenge him to know the truth so that it will set them free (8:31–32; 19:37–38). Some respond positively, others do not, but the hope for those who do is to have life in Jesus' name (20:30–31).
Jesus' final challenge of the Gospel is for those who believe and love to "follow me." The purpose of the Gospel, therefore, is to prepare audiences to do just that.