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John-Detailed Outline
A. From Heaven
John 1:1-1:8 God Before Christ
John 1:1-5 In the beginning… This recalls the words of Genesis. It is a reference to timeless eternity. Through him all things were made. Contrast between light and darkness is made plain.
John 1:6-8 Introduction of John the Baptist: John will testify concerning “the Word”.
John 1:9-1:18 God in Christ
John 1:9-13 The world’s response to “the Word”. The world will not recognize him. His own will not receive him. Those who do receive him will become the children of God.
John 1:14-18 The Incarnation of the Word: The Word was made flesh. Grace and truth come through him. The Son has made God known.
B. God Manifest in the Flesh
John 1:19-12:50 In the World, Jesus’ Public Ministry
John 1:19-34 John the Baptist was sent as witness. John denied being Elijah or the prophet. He claimed his role was the voice of one crying in the desert. John baptized with water (does not baptize Jesus in this Gospel). John saw Jesus, identified him as the Lamb of God. John witnessed seeing the Spirit descend on Jesus.
John 1:35-51 Gathering of disciples. John’s disciples follow Jesus. After hearing this, Andrew went to look for his brother, Simon Peter. Andrew identified Jesus as the Messiah, brought Simon to Jesus Jesus called Philip and Nathanael. Nathanael identified Jesus as the King of Israel.
John 2:1-11 Turning water into wine at wedding in Cana. Jesus and disciples were at a wedding. Jesus’ mother approached him after host ran out of wine. She told the servants to do whatever Jesus asked of them. Jesus hesitated, saying his time had not yet come. Then he had the servants fill jars; Jesus turned the water into wine. This was Jesus’ first sign. It revealed his glory and the disciples put their faith in him.
John 2:12-22 The cleansing of the temple. After staying at home for a while, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for Passover. He found men selling cattle, wares at the temple. Jesus scattered the coins and overturned the tables of the moneychangers. He accused them of turning his Father’s house into a market. Jews asked for a miraculous sign. Jesus said: “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it up in three days.” Jews declared it had taken 46 years to rebuild temple (But Jesus meant his body – after resurrection disciples remembered this).
John 2:23-3:15 Nighttime visit of Nicodemus. Nicodemus came to Jesus during this time of Passover. Nicodemus was a member of the ruling council. Nicodemus declared that Jesus must be a teacher come from God. Jesus stated: “Unless a man be born again (or from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus did not get it, requiring a further explanation from Jesus. Jesus said, “Man must be born of water and Spirit to enter kingdom.” Entering the kingdom required an inner change. Jesus predicted that the day would come when he would be “lifted up”.
John 3:16-21 Narrator’s comment on previous scene. God so loved the world he gave his only Son. God sent his Son not to condemn but to save the world. Light has arrived; but men prefer darkness.
John 3:22-36 John the Baptist continued to bear witness to Jesus. Jesus and John were baptizing simultaneously. (According to synoptics, Jesus began his ministry after John was arrested). Jewish inquirer wanted to know whose baptism was valid – John’s or Jesus’. John showed no jealousy; used simile of bridegroom and attendant. Jesus “came from above” and has higher authority than John.
John 4:1-38 The Samaritan Woman at the Well
John 4:1-26 Jesus was passing through Samaria, stopped at Jacob’s well. Jesus asked for a drink from a Samaritan woman (It would be unusual for a Jewish man to speak to a Samaritan woman, much less ask to drink out of her “unclean” utensil.) Woman remarked on that fact. Jesus said he had “living water”; her interest was piqued. He told her to get her husband at which point she denied being married. Jesus told her that was true, since she had had five husbands. She identified Jesus as a Prophet and as the Messiah.
John 4:27-38 Disciples returned from buying food, were surprised at the scene. Woman went back to her town and got all the people to come back to hear Jesus. Jesus refused the disciples’ food saying his food was to do God’s will. Jesus expounded on a lesson on the harvest, separation of labor. Jesus had done the work and they would reap the benefit.
John 4:39-42 Samaritans listened to the woman and came out to see Jesus. He stayed with them two days; they identified Jesus as Savior of the world.
John 4:43-54 Healing of Nobleman’s son. Jesus returned to Cana; nobleman begged him to heal his son. Jesus healed him from a distance. Man believed Jesus and went home to find his son healed. He and his entire household believed.
John 5:1-47 The Beginning of Controversy
John 5:1-15 Healing of the paralytic. Back in Jerusalem, Jesus went to the “sheep gate”. Many disabled people lay there waiting for the “troubling of the water”. Jesus asked a man who’d been an invalid for 38 years if he wanted to be well. The man replied that he had no one to help him get into the pool. Jesus healed him, told him to pick up his mat and go home. Man was immediately healed and did just that. Because it was a Sabbath, the Jews chastised him for carrying his mat. Later Jesus met up with the man, told him not to sin any longer.
John 5:16-30 Jews persecuted Jesus for healing on Sabbath. Jesus said he and his Father worked everyday. “The Son can do nothing but what he sees the Father doing.” The Father empowers and loves the Son and entrusts him with judgment.
John 5:31-47 John was a witness to Jesus’ authority. Yet, Jesus’ testimony was greater than John’s . His works testified that God had sent him.
John 6:1-8:59 Eruption of Conflict
John 6:1-15 Feeding of the 5,000. People followed because of his many miraculous signs. He asked Philip how they might feed that many. Philip said it would take 8 month’s wages. A small boy had 5 small barley loaves and two small fish. Jesus gave thanks, had disciples distribute the food. Twelve baskets were left over. After they ate, the people wanted to make him king. Jesus withdrew into the hills by himself.
John 6:16-21 Jesus walked on the water. Disciples went to the lake. After rowing 3 ½ miles, they saw Jesus approaching them on the water. They were terrified. Jesus reassured them, entered the boat and they were immediately at shore.
John 6:22-59 Jesus addressed the crowd in the synagogue. People continued to search for Jesus. People asked what they must do to do the works God required. Jesus replied they were to believe in the one God had sent. People asked for a sign (like the manna in the desert…this is just after 5000 were fed in the wilderness!). Jesus said he was “the bread of life”. Anyone who comes to him will never be hungry or thirsty. Jews began to recall his humble beginnings. Jesus rebuked them for grumbling, repeated that he is “the bread of life”. Jews argued more. Jesus stated: “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.”
John 6:60-71 Even disciples had a hard time with this saying. Jesus repeated that no one could come to the Father unless God had enabled him. Many disciples left from following Jesus. Jesus asked if others wanted to leave; Peter said they had nowhere else to go; Jesus agreed; yet one of them would betray him.
John 7:1-52 The Journey to Jerusalem
John 7:1-13 Jesus’ brothers wanted him to go to Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles – get a little publicity. Jesus said it was not yet his time (same words used at Cana). He was not of this world; that is why the world hated him. Later, he went to Jerusalem in secret. Listened to what people were saying about him; opinions were very divided.
John 7:14-44 Jesus taught in the temple court. Midway through feast, Jesus went to temple to teach. He said his teachings originated with God. Acknowledged authority of Law given to Moses. Accused authorities of trying to kill him. People were shocked, accused him of being demon-possessed. Jesus used example of circumcision (which was allowed on the Sabbath) to ask why healing was not permitted on the Sabbath. Reaction of crowd varied; some wanted to kill him, others believed. Guards planned to arrest him, but Jesus said they would not find him. On the last day, Jesus invited all those who were thirsty to come to him. Many people thought he was a prophet, or the Christ.
John 7:45-52 Temple guards asked why Pharisees didn’t arrest him. Nicodemus raised a legal problem –Jesus would need to be heard before they could arrest him. Pharisees accused Nicodemus of being from Galilee as well.
John 7:53-8:11 The Woman Taken in Adultery.
Jesus retired to the Mount of Olives. The next morning he went again to the temple courts. Pharisees brought a woman caught in the act of adultery. Demanded he judge the case, render a decision. Jesus wrote in the sand, said the one without sin could throw the first stone. One by one, they all left. Jesus told the woman to go and sin no more.
John 8:12-30 Teaching in the temple. Jesus declared: “I am the light of the world…” Jews challenged his witness of himself. Jesus retorted that both he and his Father were witnesses. Jesus repeated four times that his Father sent him.
John 8:31-47 Teachings to believers “You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” People reminded him they were descendants of Abraham – and free. Jesus said they were slaves to sin; they’d even tried to kill him. If they truly belonged to God, they would listen to Jesus.
John 8:48-59 Non-believers accused him again of demon-possession. “If you keep my word, you will never see death.” That infuriated them even more. Accused him of thinking he was greater than. Abraham, though he was less than 50 years old. Jesus said: “Before Abraham was born, I am!” Jews tried to stone him, but he slipped away.
John 9 Healing of Man Born Blind
John 9:1-12 Disciples inquired regarding the reason for his blindness. Who had sinned -- his parents or the man himself? Jesus said neither sinned, only that God’s works might be seen. Jesus healed the man’s blindness. Neighbors had a hard time believing he was the same person.
John 9:13-41 Neighbors took him to the Pharisees. Healing had happened on Sabbath. Pharisees said Jesus was not from God if he did not keep Sabbath. Man thought Jesus was a prophet. Jews thought man might have been a fraud. His parents vouched for him. Man defended Jesus. Jesus met the man later; man followed him. Jesus accused the Pharisees of blindness.
John 10:1-21 Teachings on the Good Shepherd
Shepherd cares for his sheep, enters by the gate. Each sheep knows the name of his own shepherd. They will follow him but not a stranger. Jesus said: “I am the gate for the sheep.” “I am the good shepherd.”. He knows his sheep and his sheep know him. Just as he knows the Father and the Father knows him. Jesus will lay down his life for his sheep. People were divided in their response.
John 10:22-42 The debate in Solomon’s Colonnade
People asked, “Are you the Christ?” Additional metaphor using sheep. Jews tried to stone him. Jesus claimed his unbreakable connection with the Father. Jews tried to stone him again, but he escaped their grasp.
John 11:1-44 Story of Lazarus
John 11:1-16 Announcement of Lazarus’ illness. Jesus wanted to return to Judea. Disciples were worried that the Jews might try to kill him again. Jesus said he would go to “wake Lazarus”. Disciples did not understand, but offered to go with him.
John 11:17-37 Conversations with Martha and Mary (sisters of Lazarus). When Jesus arrived, Lazarus had been in tomb for four days. Martha rushed out to say, “Lord if you had been here, he would not have died. But even now God will do what you ask.” Jesus declared, “I am the resurrection and the life.” Martha knew the traditional thinking, added, “You are the Christ.” She called Mary who said, “Lord, if you had been here, he would not have died.” Then Mary wept. Jesus asked to be taken to the tomb, and then Jesus wept.
John 11:35-44 Raising of Lazarus: Despite Martha’s concerns, Jesus had the stone removed. Jesus called Lazarus forth from the grave; he did.
John 11:45-57 The final straw. Many Jews who had come to mourn with the sisters saw the event. They told the Pharisees, who called a meeting of the Sanhedrin. High priest determined that one should die so that others may live (Jesus was becoming too hot, politically speaking. They were afraid that soon the people would revolt against the Romans.) Afterward Jesus kept to himself – until the time of Passover
John 12:1-50 The Final Days in Jerusalem
John 12:1-11 Dinner at Bethany at the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. Martha served; Mary anointed his feet with perfume. Judas (one of the disciples) thought it was a waste of good perfume. It should have been sold, and the proceeds given. Jesus said the perfume was for the day of his burial. Crowd was moving in and out; chief priest made plans to kill Lazarus, too
John 12:12-19 Entry into Jerusalem: Crowd found branches and went out to meet him. “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord”. Jesus rode in on a young donkey. Disciples didn’t get the significance of all this until after resurrection. People were still talking about the raising of Lazarus. Pharisees were concerned things were getting way out of hand.
John 12:20-36 Greeks came to see Jesus. Jesus said his “hour was at hand”. Spoke enigmatically before crowd; voice from heaven spoke about glorifying the name of the Father. Jesus said they would have “light” only a little while longer.
John 12:37-50 Despite all Jesus’ mighty works, some still refused to believe. This fulfilled what the prophet Isaiah had said (52:13-53:12). Some of the leaders believed secretly. Jesus again reiterated he was sent by the Father, only did as he was told.
John 13-17 To His Own
John 13:1-20 Washing of the disciples’ feet. After the evening meal, Jesus got up, began to wash the disciples’ feet. Jesus knew that all power had been given to him. Peter balked at the idea, saying he would never allow Jesus to wash feet. Jesus said if Peter didn’t get washed, he’d have no part with Jesus. Afterwards Jesus asked if they understood the significance of it all. “No servant is greater than his master” Do this and be blessed.
John 13:21-30 Prediction of Judas’ betrayal. Disciples were at a loss as to what he meant. Disciple whom Jesus loved asked who it was. Jesus identified Judas, told him to do quickly what he needed to do. Disciples didn’t understand what was happening.
John 13:31-14:31 A series of questions. Jesus gave them a new commandment. “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love each other”. Peter asked him where he was going. Jesus said they could not follow; Peter promised to lay down his life. Jesus predicted Peter’s rejection. Jesus would go on ahead to prepare a place for them. Question of Thomas: Since they didn’t know where he was going, how could they follow. Jesus declared: “I am the way and the truth and the life.” Philip’s request: Show us the Father and that will be enough. Jesus said: “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” Jesus promised to send a “Comforter” (Paraclete) “the Spirit of Truth”. Judas asked why Jesus didn’t want to show himself to the world. If anyone loves Jesus, he will obey his commands. This would be the outgrowth of loving Jesus. Jesus again promised the Comforter. The Comforter will “teach them all things”.
John 15:1-27 Teachings About Relationships
John 15:1-11 Relation of Jesus to disciples. Metaphor of vine and gardener. Jesus is the vine; disciples are the branches. If they remain in Jesus, they would bear much fruit.
John 15:12-17 Relation of disciples to each other. Everything Jesus has known from the Father he told them. His command: Love one another.
John 15:18-27 Relation of disciples to the world. The world hated Jesus before it hated them.
John 16:1-33 Discussion of Revelation Jesus Was About to Give to Disciples
John 16:1-4 Warning to the disciples that they would be persecuted.
John 16:5-15 Jesus needed to leave so Comforter could come.
John 16:16-33 Jesus revealed that he would go “away for a while”. Used metaphor of woman giving birth – pain, then joy. Disciples didn’t understand. The day would come when Jesus would use plain talk, then they would know. The Spirit of Truth would guide them into all truth.
John 17:1-26 Jesus’ prayer for the Disciples
Acknowledged that his “time has come”. Jesus prayed that his Father would glorify him that he may glorify the Father. Prayed for the disciples. Prayed that the Father would be with them and would protect them. Jesus also prayed for future believers. Prayed that they would understand that the Father had sent Jesus.
John 18-19 Arrest, Trial and Crucifixion
John 18:1-11 Jesus’ arrest. Judas arrived with contingency of guards. Jesus identified himself. Then Peter cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant. Jesus told him to put away his sword
John 18:12-14 Jesus before Annas, the High Priest:
John 18:15-18; 25-27 Interlude of Peter’s denial: Setting was the courtyard of the high priest
Peter denied Jesus three times, cock crowed.
John 18:19-24 Annas questioned Jesus about his teachings. Jesus replied that he had always spoken openly –synagogues, temple. An official struck him for speaking disrespectfully to High Priest. Annas sent him to Caiaphas.
John 18:28-19:16 Trial before Pilate
Pilate was reluctant to take the case, thought it was a religious matter. Jews said they didn’t have the right to execute anyone. Pilate asked Jesus if he was “king of the Jews”. Jesus said his kingdom was not of this world. He came into the world to testify to the truth. Pilate asked, “What is truth?” Pilate told Jews he found no basis for a charge against Jesus. Offered to release one prisoner in honor of Passover. Crowd chose Barabbas. Pilate had Jesus flogged; soldiers placed crown of thorns on his head. Crowd yelled all the more: “Crucify him”. Crowd said Jesus had said he was the Son of God. Pilate was fearful, asked Jesus, “where do you come from?” Jesus was silent. Pilate tried other means to set him free but to no avail. Finally he turned Jesus over to the Jews to be crucified.
John 19:17-27 The Crucifixion
Jesus carried his own cross, crucified him between two others. Pilate prepared a notice and fastened it to the cross. “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews”. Jews protested the sign, Pilate refused to change it. Soldiers divided his clothes among them, cast lots for his undergarment. Near the cross stood his mother, other women. Jesus entrusted his mother into the care of the “disciple whom he loved”.
John 19:28-37 Jesus’ death
Jesus said he was thirsty. Soldiers offered him wine vinegar. Jesus received the drink, said, “It is finished” and gave up his spirit. Jews wanted bodies taken down, asked Pilate to have their legs broken. Jesus’ legs were not broken because he had already died. One of the soldiers pierced his side with a sword. Blood and water flowed out. Soldier testified to this; all happened in fulfillment of scripture.
John 19:38-42 The Burial of Jesus
Joseph of Arimathea went to Pilate, asked for Jesus’ body. He and Nicodemus took body, wrapped it in spices, and buried it. Tomb was in a garden and had never been used.
C. To Heaven
John 20:1-20:18 The Empty Tomb
John 20:1-9 Witness of Mary, Peter and John. Mary went first, saw the open tomb, and ran to Peter and “the other disciple”. They raced to the tomb; “the other disciple” beat Peter. They saw the empty tomb, and “believed”. But they did not yet understand about the Resurrection.
John 20:10-18 Appearance to Mary: Disciples went back home; Mary stayed behind weeping. She saw two angels in the tomb. They asked why she was crying. She didn’t know where Jesus’ body had been taken. Jesus then appeared to her, but she thought it was the gardener. When Jesus called her by name, she knew him. Jesus told her not to “hold on to him,” but to go tell the others. Mary ran to tell them all Jesus had said to her.
John 20:19-21 Resurrection Appearances
John 20:19-23 Appearance to the disciples. When they were behind locked doors, Jesus appeared in their midst. Jesus gave greeting, “Peace be with you!” Jesus breathed on them, saying, “Receive the Holy Spirit”.
John 20:24-29 Thomas’ confession of Jesus. Thomas had not been present when Jesus appeared to the others. He refused to believe until he could see Jesus for himself. A week later, Jesus appeared to them, saying, “Peace be with you!” Thomas declared, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus: “Blessed are those who have not seen but believe”.
John 20:30-31 Summary statement: All is written so others might believe and have life in Jesus’ name.
John 21:1-14 Jesus’ early morning breakfast on the shore of the Sea of Tiberias. Several of the disciples had been fishing all night, but had caught nothing. Jesus called out to them from the shore, but they did not recognize him. He told them to throw their nets on the right side, haul was abundant. Then “the disciple whom Jesus loved” recognized him. Jesus told them to bring in some of the fish they had just caught. They breakfasted together.
John 21:15-23 Special instruction for Peter: Jesus asked Peter three times if he loved him. Each time Peter answered, “Yes”. Jesus replied, “Feed my sheep”. By the third time Peter was very hurt; Jesus said it was because his career would be difficult. Peter asked about John; Jesus said it was none of his concern.
John 21:24-25 Writer of Gospel acknowledges content of Jesus’ teachings and works. “We know that his testimony is true.”

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