[CF Devotionals] 2011-11-01 - 1 John

The Epistles of John ~ Introduction

  1. Author: The accepted author of all three letters is the Apostle John. This acceptance is based on the content and style. The texts themselves don't contain an authorial statement. Not surprisingly, some of the modern critical scholars have denied the Apostle John's authorship but as usual, they are in a minority position. Unger's Bible Handbook has this to say regarding the authorship of 1st John.
    "The writer was the apostle John, also the author of the fourth gospel. This fact is demonstrated by such internal evidence as a similar vocabulary in both the gospel and the epistle. They contain such expressions as light, new commandment, works of the devil, take away sins, eternal life, love, abide, lay down one's life, Paraclete, Saviour of the world, born of God. Both also have the same simple, direct Hebraic style, employing similar types of parallelism and sentence construction.

    Johannine authorship is also attested by external evidence which is both early and substantial. Polycarp, Papias, Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, Cyprian, the Muratorian fragment, the Syriac Peshitta, Origen, Dionysisu of Alexandra and Eusebius all lend their testimony to the authenticity of the epistle and Johannine authorship." 1

  1. Baker, Glenn W., The Expositor's Bible Commentary, Vol. 12, 1, 2, 3 John, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, MI, 1981, p. 293.

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