Why He Wrote

Bible Reading: John 20

John 20:30-31, “Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

We are given in these two verses the purpose unto which the Apostle John wrote his gospel account.  It was written near the end of his life, most scholars assigning it a date around AD 90.  John was a disciple of Jesus and walked with Jesus during His earthly ministry (1 John 1:1-2).  He was a witness to Jesus Christ’s resurrection (Acts 1:1-3).  Following Christ’s ascension into heaven (Acts 1:9) he served in a foundational role in the church’s establishment (Acts 3:1; 4:19).  John faithfully served as a leader in the church for the rest of his life and suffered persecution for the witness he maintained (Revelation 1:9).

Why did John devote his life to serving Jesus Christ and bearing witness of Him?  In his gospel, he wrote, “And the Word (i.e., Jesus Christ) became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).  John beheld Jesus.  He saw the glory of His person and character.  He witnessed the many and remarkable miracles that Jesus did.  John understood that Jesus alone, through His death and resurrection, can save lost sinners (John 14:6; Acts 4:12).  He devoted himself to proclaiming the gospel—the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ.  He yearned for others to experience the salvation he himself had received in Jesus.  That’s why he wrote!

The gospel account revolves around seven miracles, each of which attests to the true identity of Jesus as the divine Son of God.  It’d be impossible for any of us to relive John’s experience in beholding the glory of Jesus in the miracles he performed, but we have his reliable testimony.  The One who turned water into wine, healed from disease, fed the multitudes, walked on water, gave sight to the blind man, and raised Lazarus from the dead is none else but the eternal Son of God, the One through whom all things were made (John 1:3).

Behold the glory of Jesus!  The eternal Son of God was born of a virgin and dwelt among men (John 1:14).  John walked with Him.  He heard Him speak as no man had ever spoken.  He saw Him do things that no mere man could ever do.  In His love, and to fulfill the Father’s will, He purposed to die on a cross for our sins.  Though He had done nothing wrong, He was tried and convicted and then nailed to a cruel and pain-inflicting cross.  The Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world bore our sins on Calvary (John 1:29; 1 Peter 3:18).

Death could not hold Him; He rose from the grave (Acts 2:24).  Having made payment for sin, He won the victory over sin and death and the devil (Colossians 2:13-15; Hebrews 2:14-15).  He appeared to His disciples and others (1 Corinthians 15:5-8) and commissioned them to share the good news of His death and resurrection (Acts 1:8).  That message, His glorious gospel, is the truth of salvation by grace through faith in Him (1 Timothy 1:11; Ephesians 2:8-9).

He is a glorious Savior, and His gospel is a glorious truth.  His disciples beheld His glory when He walked with them, but the Spirit is able even now to open blind eyes to the truth (2 Corinthians 4:4-6).  There will come a day, upon His return, when every knee will bow to Him and every tongue will confess Him as Lord (Philippians 2:10-11).  Some, having never trusted in Him, will be banished from His presence to eternal destruction (2 Thessalonians 1:9).  But for others, on that day, He will be “marveled at among all who believed” (2 Thessalonians 1:10).  They will all behold His glory.  Will you be amongst them?  John wrote his gospel that you might believe and in believing receive eternal life.  Have you trusted in Him for salvation?


Tell me the story of Jesus,
write on my heart every word;
tell me the story most precious,
sweetest that ever was heard.
Tell how the angels, in chorus,
sang as they welcomed His birth,
“Glory to God in the highest!
Peace and good tidings to earth.”

Tell me the story of Jesus,
write on my heart every word;
tell me the story most precious,
sweetest that ever was heard.

Fasting alone in the desert,
tell of the days that are past;
how for our sins He was tempted,
yet was triumphant at last.
Tell of the years of His labor,
tell of the sorrow He bore;
He was despised and afflicted,
homeless, rejected, and poor. [Refrain]

Tell of the cross where they nailed Him,
writhing in anguish and pain;
tell of the grave where they laid Him,
tell how He liveth again.
Love in that story so tender,
clearer than ever I see:
stay, let me weep while you whisper,
love paid the ransom for me. [Refrain]

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

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