Teaching and Study Notes...

A Breakdown of the Gospel of John

(The Book of Love)

Note: It is important to realise as you read the text that each portion of scripture within the breakdown has a specific value within the Gospel.

The Gospel is written in the form of a journey or scenes of a play. These scenes take you from the beginning of the story to the natural end of the story (this can be seen from the flow of the scriptural breakdown). The Gospel can be broken down into four individual sections beginning with an introduction and ending with a Conclusion / Epilogue. The main content parts 2 & 3 are divided into two individual books = the ‘signs’ and the ‘glory’.

Each part of the two books has its own internal theme and needs to be examined closely

part 1 - Prologue 1:1-18 (introduction)

Part 2 - The Book of Signs= the journey to the Cross by Christ Jesus

Part 3 - The Book of Glory=the passion and crucifixion of Christ Jesus

Part 2 - The Book of Signs 1:19-12:50

A - The First Days of Jesus 1:19-51

B - From Cana to Cana 2:1-4:54

i - The First Miracle at Cana 2:1-12 14

ii - Jesus and the Jews 2:12-22

iii - The Narrators Comment 2:23-25

iv - Jesus and Nicodemus 3:1-21

v - Jesus and John the Baptist 3:22-26

vi - Jesus and the Samaritan woman 4:1-15

vii - Jesus and the Samaritan woman 4:16-30

viii - Jesus comments 4:31-38

ix - Jesus and the Samaritan villagers 4:39-42

x - The second miracle at Cana 4:43-54

C - The Feasts of 'the Jews' 5:1-10:42

i - Jesus and the Sabbath 5:1-47

ii - Jesus and the Passover 6:1-71

iii - Jesus and the Tabernacles I - 7:1-8:59

iv - Jesus and the Tabernacles II - 9:1-10:21

v - Jesus and the Dedication 10:22-42

D - Jesus turns toward 'the hour' 11:55-12:36

i - A resurrection that will lead to death 11:1-54

ii - The hour has come 11:55-12:36

iii - Conclusion to the ministry of Jesus 12:37-50

Part 3 - The Book of Glory 13:1-20:31

A - The last discourse 13:1-17:26

i - Making God known: foot washing and the morsel 13:1-38

ii - Departure 14:1-31

iii - To abide, to love and be hated 15:1-16:3

iv - Departure 16:4-33

v - Making God known: Jesus final prayer 17:1-26

B - The passion 18:1-19:42

i - Jesus and his enemies in a garden 18:1-11

ii - Jesus' appearance before the Jews 18:12-27

iii - Jesus before Pilate 18:28-19:16a

iv -The cru cifixion of Jesus 19:16b-37

v - Jesus is buried in the garden by his friends 19:38-42

C - The resurrection 20:1-29

i - Scenes at the tomb 20:1-18

a - Visits to the empty tomb 20:1-10

b - Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene 20:11-18

ii - Scenes in the house 20:19-29

a - Jesus appears to the disciples, but not Thomas 20:19-23

b - Jesus appears to the disciples and to Thomas 20:24-29

4 - The Conclusion of the Gospel 20:30-31

Epilogue: Further resurrection Appearances 21:1-25

i - Jesus appears to his disciples at the sea of Tiberias 21:1-14

ii - Jesus, Peter, and the beloved disciple 21:15-24

iii - A second conclusion to the gospel 21:25

Some questions to ask about the text you are reading

What type of text is it?

Where can I find more information about the text?

Who wrote the text?

Who was the intended reader – ie., Who is the writer speaking to [is it an individual or a group of people?

What is the point that the author is making ie., what is the purpose of the text?

How was the text transmitted to others?

When was the text written?

Where was the text written ie., what is the cultural background of the text?

Would their cultural experience or background have helped or hindered their understanding of this text?

Specific question about the text.

Is the statement or text you are reading simply a ‘fact’?

Is it simply written in the first person, for example how is the text being presented to you as you read it?

Is the text informing you of a point of information or simply causing you to stop and think?

Is the text a statement which questions the readers spiritual position?

Is the text part of a larger context and if so what is being said?

Is the text bringing clarity to a previous text?

Is the text a statement by the author which continues from a previous chapter?

Is the text a statement which has relevance today, if so, in what way and can the text be applied within my own cultural understanding?

Would members of non-Christian groups have had access to this text?

Would members of other religious groups (ie., Pharisees / Sadducees or Zealots etc) have had access to this text?

Ask yourself, would any other individuals or grouof individuals have been expected to read or have had opportunity to read this text? Ie., would it have been a private document?

In the light of these questions:

Is your new understanding about this text: for example, about the way this text would have been interpreted by the original reader?

About the way they would have understood the text?


There is a great difference between interpreting a text and that of understanding a text: it is important to note that incorrect interpretation will give an incorrect understanding and a misguided view of scriptural integrity leading to incorrect spiritual lifestyle. Discuss the importance of correct interpretation of text.

Ask yourself how the reader would have reacted to the text?

Put yourself in the position of the original reader, how would you have reacted to the text.

What does the text say to you personally?

Ask yourself, what practical application does this text have in relation to my personal spiritual life, or the life of my church group?

Are there any other questions that you personally could ask about this text and what it is saying?

Ask yourself if questions like this are important to the individual reader and the ministry of the church today?

Christian Biblical Scriptures

Billy Bray, a famous Cornish Evangelist speaking of his conversion tells us that he "... shouted for Joy. I Praised God with my whole heart for what he had done for a poor sinner like me; for I could say, The Lord hath pardoned all my sins. I think this was in November, 1823, but what day I do not know. I remember this that everything looked new to me, the people, the fields, the cattle, the trees. I was like a man in a new world... ... they said I was a mad man but they meant I was a glad man, and glory be to God! I have been glad ever since." - Bray, B., (1962), Billy Bray The Kings Son, The Epworth Press, City Road London E.C.1, Pages 19-20

Lee Strobel explains that 'Zechariah 2:10-13 predicts a time when "many nations will be joined with the Lord" and become his people. The New Testament authors certainly believed that Jesus fulfilled this prophecy... ...The inclusiveness of Jesus' ministry, his teachings and the outreach of his church are evidence that salvation comes through faith, not cultural pedigree. Although this concept may have shocked many who adhered to Jewish tradition, it gave hope to people who had never experienced hope.' - Strobel, L., (1984), The Case for Christ Study Bible: Investigating the Evidence for Belief, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, USA., page 1290

Lee Strobel tells us that "...This central message of the bible portrays Jesus and our redemption through his blood. Finally once and for all, he dealt with the issues of our guilt, our loneliness and ore alienation from God. Through his atoning death and ressurection, he opened up heaven for everyone who follows him.' - Strobel, L., (1984), The Case for Christ Study Bible: Investigating the Evidence for Belief, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, USA., page 1464.