Faith musings from the seat of a forklift.
How do we know what the contents of a trailer are? Simple. There is usually a manifest or van map. For those who are unfamiliar with the term “van map”, let me explain. A van map, very simply, is a listing of freight in a trailer and where in the trailer that particular freight is located. It is written so that when the receiver unloads the trailer, they can know what is in the trailer and where it is located.
In the Gospel of John, in chapter 20, we read “these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God”. John wanted to convey in his gospel a very specific point. His point being the truth about who Jesus was. John focused almost exclusively on the divinity of Christ Jesus, even showing that Jesus was truly God Almighty himself. Indeed, earlier, in chapter 14, Philip says to Jesus “show us the Father”, to which Jesus replied “Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip?”.
In writing this, John was ensuring that not only would we know about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, we would know that he was the Son of God and God Almighty. John noted that Jesus performed many miracles, so many that he presupposed that if everything had been written, the world would scarcely have been able to contain the books (or more likely scrolls) that would have to have been written. Truthfully, they weren’t written. John only wrote what he felt was necessary so we may believe.
Thanks to John the Disciple, we can know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. John wrote down his narrative as he had witnessed it. John may not have given a great deal of emphasis on what events happened in which order, but he was otherwise thorough in his account and provided many details that the other writers omit or otherwise ignore. Naturally, John also ignores some details that the other writers included. However, John had only one purpose and that he accomplished. He wrote what we needed to know so that we may believe.
When loading freight into a trailer, we write it down to help the receiver on the other end know what is in the trailer and where it is located. John wrote his gospel that we may believe that Jesus was truly the Christ, the Son of God. John was the eyewitness at the crucifixion. He is the disciple unto whom Jesus entrusted his mother, Mary, that he may care for her and her needs. John knew he needed to write it down. It was the only way John could be certain that he could get the message out, just like writing out a van map is the only way to ensure we know what is in a trailer.
Sometimes writing it down is the only way to share information. John’s gospel was written that we may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. We do well to read it, along with the other three gospels, to get a full sense of who Jesus was and why he died upon the cross. Indeed, we do well to read our Bibles regularly, to get a full sense of God’s plan and our place in it. Just like the gospels, the rest of the books in the Bible were written that we may believe upon the Lord God. However, somebody had to write it down. They did their part, now its our turn. We need to read and believe the word given to us. God calls us all to repentance, but only through his Son as recorded in the Holy Bible.