Exegesis of John 3:16

2232 Words Oct 23rd, 2012 9 Pages
Literary Criticism 1. Context In the verses leading up to John 3:16 through 3:21, we see Jesus in conversation with Nicodemus, who is not yet willing to accept Jesus as the son of God or as his lord and savior, and who is equally unwilling to make a decision on such a topic. We see a man who has not yet seized the opportunity to enhance his own life by letting Jesus into it. Nicodemus only sees the greatness of his own life and does not see the wisdom, truth, or virility that can be provided to him by Jesus. He is a man, not too much unlike doubters of today, who wants more proof and who believes that his current way of being is working and will get him to a better afterlife. For moments he seems to come to the light and accept Jesus, …show more content…
The parallelism of John 4:9 to John 3:16 as described above allows the reader to gain deeper understanding of 3:16, as 4:9 essentially is the same message with slightly varied words which, when contextually applied, give meaning or definition to the words of 3:16. The lines therein help the reader to gain an understanding of words such as “us”, “world”, and living “through him”, where we can now ascertain that “us” refers to believers and “through him” refers to the eternal life that can be gained through acceptance. 4. Redaction Criticism The passage of John 3:16 through 3:19 has seen in its wording and its use of pronouns over the course of time, both to aid in the general understanding of the passage as well as to give specific manifestation to the greater significance of God. The original King James version of the New Testament refers to God as “he” and to Jesus as “his Son” and in neither case is the pronoun referring to God capitalized. The New American Standard version changes that such that pronouns referring to God are capitalized. It can be argued that this change gives greater significance to God, separating him from mere mortals where the previous lower-cased words made God too common and too similar to regular mortal men. The New American Standard version also changes “saved” to “saved through Him”, making it more
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