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Before you start reading the Notes, may we recommend the following:

1. You pause and pray and ask for God's help for the Bible to come alive to you.

    (It's all right if you've never prayed before, just talk to God as if He's there

    with you - He is!)

2. You get hold of a Bible and look up john's Gospel in the Contents and read

     the verses before you do anything more on each Study.

3. You work your way through the questions looking for answers in your Bible.

4. Then and only then, read through the commentary that follows.

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7





These Studies


      These studies are written for the person who is seeking the truth and who is willing to take a few minutes each day, for a week, to read a little of John's Gospel in the Bible.


      The Bible has been formatted over the centuries into “books”, chapters and verses. In these notes where the reference is say 3:1-3, that means chapter 3 and verses 1 to 3 for you to look up and read.


      The format of these studies is such that they require you to read the given passage for the day in John's Gospel, and then answer the questions to help you take in what you have read. The “Comment” focuses on what you have read and the “And So?” highlights the implications of it.


The Gospels


      The four Gospels at the start of the New Testament in the Bible, reveal to us the most wonderful life that has ever been seen on the face of the earth, that of Jesus Christ.


      Each of the Gospels give us something of the recorded life of Jesus and then his death and resurrection. The first three Gospels are very similar, obviously drawing on similar sources for their information. As the main accounts of the life of Jesus, the Gospels are without doubt the most important documents in all of human history, and therefore they deserve our careful study.



John's Gospel


      The fourth Gospel is quite different from the first three. Yes, it does recount something of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, but it does it from a very different viewpoint.


      The writer, John, wrote very much later than the other three Gospel writers and because so many years had passed before he wrote, John had had time to appreciate far more fully the wonder of the One he was now writing about. We find in this Gospel, therefore, a far clearer picture of the divine wonder of the person of Jesus than in any of the other Gospels. In that sense it is probably the most important and certainly the most profound of the four Gospels.

      Remember in what follows, you will only get the most out of the study if you follow the guide lines above and answer the questions in each Day's Study. Don't rush, but carefully take in and think about what you read.


If you haven't a Bible, then simply click on the Bible verses and that will take you
to a page that shows you that passage that you can refer to as you go
through the Study.


Day 1 : The Word : John 1:1-3, 14


A. Find Out:


1. How long has the Word existed? v.1

2. Where was the Word? v.1,2

3. How like God was the Word? v.1

4. How was the Word involved in Creation? v.3

5. What did the Word do? v.14

B. Think :

1. What is a "word"?

2. How do you think Jesus was a "word"?

3. How do these verses suggest Jesus was far more than mere man?

C. Comment :


     The Greeks used "the Word" (Greek 'Logos' in the original) to mean reason or wisdom. The writer, John, took this concept to communicate something of who Jesus is.

      Another way of putting it, perhaps, is to say that a word is simply an expression or means of communication from one person to another. God is a personal being and He communicates. The New Testament teaches that Jesus, is God's expression of Himself to us. Whenever Jesus is revealed in the New Testament of the Bible, he is shown as a distinct personality and yet totally one with God (the Father).

     When we speak, our words are us; you cannot separate them from us. Similarly, John implies, you cannot separate Jesus from God.


     Through Him, John declares the world was made. Jesus, the expression of God, was involved in the making of all that is this universe. This all implies, and John declares it, that Jesus existed as one with God long before he came to earth in human form.

D. And So?


       God is a mystery. Let's not try to be too clever! God doesn't demand that we understand Him, just that we worship Him. However, God has communicated with us by showing us something of His true nature by coming on the earth that He made, in the form of the person we know as Jesus Christ. IF this is true, then we need to do all we can to find out about this person called Jesus who lived in what we now call Israel , nearly two thousand years ago. 




Day 2 : Water into Wine : John 2:1-11


A. Find Out:


1. Who were at the wedding as guests? v.1,2

2. What crisis prompted Jesus' mother to speak? v.3

3. What was Jesus' response? v.4

4. What instruction did Mary give? v.5

5. What sort of wine was produced? v.10

6. What was the result of this? v.11

B. Think :


1. What effect would running out of wine have had on the

     wedding celebrations?

2. Why do you think Jesus did this miracle?

3. What must his disciples (followers) have thought?

C. Comment :


      A crisis! A Jewish wedding where the wine runs out. Such a thing might well have brought disgrace and would certainly have brought a premature end to the ongoing festivities.


      So why did Jesus do this? The obvious answer is that he had:

a) compassion on the people running the wedding and

b) power to do something about it.


      Throughout the Gospels we find this somewhat unsettling aspect of Jesus: he kept doing things that were humanly impossible, things we refer to as miracles. The Gospels are full of them! But if he was God in the flesh, then that would not be surprising, because if God made this world then He can also change it as He wills.


      But is there something more to this miracle than the obvious? The writer, John, tended to pick on particular miracles that Jesus did, that said something more about his work in general with mankind. So what does this miracle say? It says that Jesus can take the ordinary and transform it into something special. Jesus takes our ordinary lives and, by his power, he can transform them into lives of richness and maturity (like that wine) that can bring blessing to others.


D. And So?


      Jesus is in the life-transforming business. When we look at our own lives are we content with them or do we have an awareness of need for some transformation?   We need to hear more of Jesus then.





Day 3 : Born  Again? : John 3:1-6


A. Find Out:


1. Who was Nicodemus? v.1

2. When did he come to Jesus? v.2a

3. How did he know God was with Jesus? v.2b

4. What did Jesus say had to happen? v.3

5. What was Nicodemus's problem with that? v.4

6. What sort of birth was Jesus talking about? v.5,6

B. Think :


1. How did Nicodemus assess Jesus? Why?

2. How was Nicodemus thinking in one dimension and Jesus in


C. Comment :


      We now come to a personal exchange between Jesus and this senior religious leader who came somewhat furtively at night time.

      Nicodemus assesses Jesus as a miracle-performing teacher who must have been sent by God (otherwise how could he have been doing these things). Now coming when he came and saying what he said, it is clear that Nicodemus is coming looking for something.   He is a seeker. What for? Well, from Jesus' answer we must assume he was wanting to know how he could have a similarly close relationship with God that Jesus obviously had.  The “kingdom of God” here refers to the rule or presence of God that Nicodemus was enquiring about.

      Jesus' answer to the unspoken question is breath-taking: you need a completely new life, you need to start living all over again!  How can you be born a second time, is Nicodemus's natural query. I'm talking about a spiritual rebirth, is Jesus' reply.

      Nicodemus had been thinking on a purely materialistic plane but Jesus says no, there is also a spiritual dimension to life as well, and you need to start out afresh in that spiritual dimension!

D. And So?


      Many of us have lived believing (wrongly) that we are purely a mass of molecules. Yet we have had a sense of something missing - the spiritual aspect of our lives, the dimension where we can know and experience God. Jesus comes to bring that.   




Day 4 : The Mystery of the Wind : John 3:7-16


A. Find Out:


1. To what does Jesus liken being born again? v.8

2. Of what does Jesus say he spoke? v.11

3. What was Jesus' problem? v.11b,12

4. Where had the "Son of Man" come from? v.13

5. What must happen to him? v.14

6. Why? v.15,16

B. Think :


1. Why was Jesus qualified to speak about heavenly matters?

2. How do we know about the wind, or say magnetism?

C. Comment :


      Jesus was teaching that this new spiritual dimension comes only with the aid of his Spirit (the Bible teaches that God is Spirit and God's Spirit is referred to, in the Bible, as the Holy Spirit). Continuing from the Study above, Jesus says it is a bit like the wind, you feel it but don't know where it comes from or when it will come.   It is a mystery.  We accept many things we cannot fully understand.    How the Holy Spirit brings us new life is also a mystery, but we are to believe it.


      Jesus makes a clear claim to have come from heaven and then uses Old Testament imagery to convey a further truth. At one point of Israel's rebellious history, while living in the desert, they were suffering from snake bites. Moses, their leader said that if they turned to God they would be healed, and as a sign of their turning to God they should come to a pole he put up with a bronze snake on it, to be the focus of their faith.   So, he says, I will be the same sort of focus when I am lifted up on the Cross, so all who believe when they see or hear about my death will receive eternal life.

     Right, it's not as clearly spelt out as that, but that is what Jesus is saying to Nicodemus in Old Testament prophetic language that he ought to understand.

D. And So?


      Jesus' death on the Cross, the Bible teaches, was to take our punishment. When we believe that is the extent of his love for us, then he releases new life for us, life that goes on past death into eternity.




Day 5 : I am God!  : John 10:22-33


A. Find Out:


1. What were the Jews asking of Jesus? v.24

2. What did Jesus say spoke for him and what did he do? v.25,28

3. What did he say about God, his Father? v.29,30

4. How did the Jews respond to that? v.31

5. Why did they say they were doing it? v.33

B. Think:

1. What did Jesus claim about himself in this passage?

2. What response did that provoke?

3. What does that indicate?


C. Comment:


      The Jews come to Jesus and almost seek to provoke him to declare himself. Jesus cuttingly pointed out that he has already provided sufficient for them to believe in him, but they have refused to believe, and so putting a title to him won't help.


      Speaking of his followers, Jesus said that they are secure in his hand and in the hand of His Father who is greater than anyone or anything else. There is no doubt that he is referring to God.


      Then comes an amazing claim: I and the Father are one. The Jews were quite clear that Jesus was claiming to be God! This is one of Jesus' most clear claims and the response of the Jews is equally clear: this is blasphemy and he desires to die!


      This is one of the two things in the Gospels that separate out Jesus Christ from any other person in history, and certainly from any other world or religious leader. Again and again, he claimed to be God. No, you can call him mad, but his teaching is too clear and too good to go along with that. You can call him a liar but his character denies that. You can call him deceived but the evidence of history denies that. The writers of the New Testament are united about this claim. Of the twelve apostles, ten of them died for their belief. That is a powerful testimony!

D. And So?

        IF Jesus Christ was God's Son then he is still God's Son because God is eternal. IF he is God's Son then we need to do all we can to find out about him and what he said.




Day 6 : Trial & Death  : John 18:28 - 19:37


A. Find Out:


1. What did the Jews obviously want to happen? 18:31 , 19:6,15

2. What was Pilate's assessment of Jesus? 18:36 , 19:4,12

3. What happened to Jesus? 19:1-3,17,18

4. Why didn't the soldiers break Jesus' legs? 19:33

5. What did they do to be on the safe side? 19:44

B. Think:

1. How would you describe Jesus' “trial” before Pilate?

2. What is obvious through it?

3. How can we be sure Jesus actually died?

C. Comment:


      Jesus, by his goodness and truth, showed up the religious leaders of the day for what they were: bigoted and full of pride, running a man-made religion. Eventually they could stand it no longer so arrested him, falsely tried him and had him taken before the Roman governor and forced him to permit the death penalty. It is certainly, one of the most shameful incidents in human history.


      Death was brought about by nailing the criminal to a wooden cross until he eventually died, very often from heart collapse, very often from asphyxiation (being unable to breath being hung as they were). Roman soldiers were part of the harshest and most disciplinarian army in the history of the world. They knew what death was - it was more than their individual lives were worth to mess it up!  A man who has hung on a cross for hours and has his body pierced as his was, has no chance of survival. Jesus was dead!  None of the alternatives bear scrutiny. But why all this? The Bible is clear.  We all fall short of God's standards (we are sinners), and we deserve punishment. The Cross was God taking our punishment himself so that we might be free. That is the Bible's staggering claim!


D. And So?


      Dare I face the truth that I am a sinner who deserves eternal punishment?   Dare I believe that Jesus died in my place? Dare I believe that he did it to reconcile me to God?  He was innocent, of that there is no doubt. IF he was God, as he said, if he said this was the reason, can I doubt it?   To doubt it I have to deny the entire New Testament teaching.




Day 7 : Jesus comes to the Disciples : John 20:19-31


A. Find Out:


1. Where were the disciples and why? v.19a

2. How did Jesus come and what did he say? v.19b

3. What did he do and how did the disciples respond? v.20

4. How did Thomas respond when he heard? v.24,25

5. How did Jesus lay Thomas's doubts to rest? v.27

B. Think:

1. What was remarkable about how Jesus came to them?

2. How did he convince them who he was?

C. Comment:

      It is three days later on Sunday.  Jesus' body had been taken off the Cross and buried in a sealed tomb.  An apparent earthquake broke the tomb open and the body was gone.  Some claimed grave robbers had taken him, but nobody produced the body - until Sunday! Then Jesus comes and shows himself to all the gathered disciples. The doors are locked but he just appears in the room. The body he has now is obviously not limited in the way it had been before.  Yet, somehow, it is not just a ghost for they can touch him and feel him. Without doubt he is alive.


      Each of the Gospel accounts testify to this as does the rest of the New Testament. This is the second thing that separates out Jesus Christ from any other person in history;  he died AND rose from the dead to convince us as to who he was. So sure of this truth have been countless Christians that they have given their lives for it.


      The Gospel accounts are so down to earth. There is no mystical language about them; they are just factual accounts of a period of history in a different time and culture from our own. They are confirmed by various secular accounts written by others at that time. They recount the most incredible events in human history.

D. And So?


      If we struggle with the accounts of the death and resurrection of Jesus, we need to ask ourselves why. Why do we refuse to accept such carefully documented and preserved accounts?  Can it be that we recognise that as soon as we accept the accounts we will have to accept allegiance to the One who said, “Follow me”?







A. Summary:


     As we have read through these accounts about Jesus Christ in the Bible, we have seen:


•  John describing Jesus as God's means of communication to us.

•  Jesus showing he is capable of transforming the ordinary into

    the special.

•  Jesus saying we need a spiritual dimension to our lives.

•  Jesus saying we need a complete new start in our lives.

•  Jesus declaring he is God in the flesh.

•  Jesus being falsely tried, convicted and then crucified.

•  Jesus appearing, having risen from the dead.


B. Conclusions?


       When we read these accounts, if we can do it with an open mind, we have to accept as true what we have read with its consequences for our lives.  Alternatively we may seek to put up reasons to justify our refusal of the accounts.   Most commonly put up reasons are:

1. The writers were sincere but deluded


     What was the point of going to so much trouble in a period when writing was not easy. What would make fearful, guilt-ridden followers change into bold, fearless proclaimers of the Good News?

2. They are merely fictional writings of history

     Read the Gospels carefully and note the amazing amount of historical detail - especially Luke 3:1,2

3. They have been passed down through history so many times we no longer
     have the original accounts

      Untrue. We have hundreds of times more very early manuscript evidence for the New Testament than any other ancient writings which scholars are quite happy to accept as authentic.


4. They are full of mistakes


     Untrue. Where there are any doubts over manuscripts, there is a note at the bottom of the page in the Bible. These are truly minor question marks which in no way throw doubt on the bulk of the text.






How do I respond to what I have read? What does the Bible require of me?

1. It requires that I face my need

•  I am not perfect, I fail, I think wrong and do wrong. God often

   seems distant if not non-existent, so self-concerned am I.

•  God (and natural justice) declares me guilty, deserving

   punishment. Deep down I know my guilt.

•  I need his forgiveness, I need someone to take my

   punishment. I need His help.

•  Yet I don't know Him personally.

2. It requires that I accept the truth about God and me

•  He declares He loves me.

•  He declares He sent Jesus to die in my place.

•  He calls me to accept and receive His love.

•  He knows best about how I should live my life.

•  He calls me to accept His leadership in my life.

•  He alone has power to enable me to live like that.

•  He calls me to receive His power into my life.


Can I pray -


  Lord, I've failed. I'm not what I could be, I've ignored you,

  Lord please forgive me

  Thank you that Jesus died for me.

  Thank you that I deserved punishment but Jesus took it.

  Thank you that you know best; please lead my life.

  Thank you that you have power, may I have it in my life.



      If you can pray this prayer meaningfully, you have embarked on the most exciting adventure that is possible to us - a relationship with the living God. Tell a Christian friend what you have done. Find a lively church that can help you grow in your Christian faith. You have just started on a learning and growing experience that will never end until you leave this earth and go to be with Him in eternity. The Bible is there to teach you. Prayer is open to to talk with Him. Welcome to God's family!






       If you have enjoyed starting to read the Bible, why not make it a regular daily habit, to find out more about your new-found faith. Perhaps you may want to read the rest of John's Gospel, perhaps you may want to start with one of the less profound Gospels, such as Mark's, which is shorter and more basic.


      Perhaps you need to buy a Bible. Bibles come in a number of different versions. The reason for this is that the Old Testament was mainly written in Hebrew and the New Testament written in Greek, which means the Bible has had to be translated. To start off, don't worry too much about what version you get as long it is in modern English that you can easily understand. Go along to your local Christian book shop (a Christian will tell you where there is one) and look at the range of Bibles. Don't pay a lot of money to start with, just get a cheaper hardback version and start reading.


     If you want help in reading on a daily basis, the notes on this site are here to help you. There are over fifty different sets to choose from covering much of the Bible.


     The Bible is the most exciting book ever written. As you go to read it, ask God for help to understand what you read. Let Him teach you by His word. Start with the Gospels and then perhaps the book of Acts and then some of the letter in the New Testament. The whole book is there to teach you all about the wonder of knowing God.



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