Chapter 1: Introduction; Chapter 2: Historical approaches; Chapter 3: Literary approaches; Chapter 4: Ideological approaches (reader response/ contextual readings); Chapter 5: Theological approaches (Key elements).
Jan Van der Watt is Professor of New Testament Studies at the University of Pretoria, South Africa.
Mention - New Testament Abstracts, Vol. 52 No. 3, 2008
"This fine introduction to the Gospel and the Letters of John results quite obviously from long years of hard labour that its author has invested in researching the Johannine writings. All the basic issues are covered: structure, content, source theories, composition history, social world, relationship to the Synoptics and the Old Testament, the link to Gnosticism, and so on. The often conflicting views of other prominent scholars are always presented in a very fair way. The author usually opts for more complex and balanced solutions, which I mostly share. A number of charts help the reader to get a firm grasp of the argument. Special features of the Gospel like irony and imagery are discussed, and a solid overview of its theology is given. This study is highly recommended as a textbook for classes on John. I am sure that the students will just love it." - Hans-Josef Klauck, Naomi Shenstone Donnelley Professor of New Testament and Early Christian Literature, The University of Chicago, Divinity School
"Jan van der Watt has laboured long in the Johannine vineyard and his most recent book, 'An Introduction to the Johannine Gospel and Letters' shows the ripe fruit of that labour. Not only are the issues of Introduction addressed here but also various of the major theological, ethical and social issues are illuminated in this reader friendly study. Highly recommended." - Ben Witherington III, Asbury Theological Seminary, USA--Sanford Lakoff
"Jan van der Watt has provided us with a splendid textbook to the Gospel and the three letters of John. His book masterfully combines the quest of the historical origin of these New Testament writings, an exposition of their literary relationship and structure, and the theological analysis of the Johannine writings. The book has succeeded in conjoining two virtues which are often considered as being incompatible: It is written at the highest scholarly stage and it is easy to read. This makes the book important and useful not only for academic people - experts and novices as well -, but also for everybody who is interested in the history and theology of the most fascinating New Testament writings." - Michael Wolter, University of Bonn, Germany
"This is a crisp, succinct, and well-informed introduction to the Johannine literature..." -Donald Senior, C.P./em>, September 2008--Sanford Lakoff "The Bible Today "
"Van der Watt succeeds in summarizing a great deal of material without bogging down in detail. He also shows a talent for explaining basic terms of biblical scholarship without disrupting the overall flow of the topic at hand. In short, the book is helpful in summarizing issues of Johannine scholarship while remaining accessible to those with no background in terminology or methodologies of biblical studies...Van der Watt demonstrates a gift for covering a lot of ground while illuminating that ground clearly, concisely, and engagingly. He also succeeds in showing how issues typically associated with scholarly study have an impact on practical issues of interpretation. Overall, this is an excellent introduction to Johannine studies for students or for congregational ministers seeking an acquaintance with the trends and overall sweep of Johannine scholarship." -Milton Stanley, Stone-Campbell Journal 11, Fall 2008
."..this book abounds in insight and many helpful ways of putting things. It is sufficiently comprehensive that it surveys many positions from which van der Watt himself demurs, but sufficiently a reflection of van der Watt' own views that the book avoids the temptation to be ridiculously bland." --Sanford Lakoff "Rbl "
"The author admirably fulfils his purpose of introducing students to the diverse ways of approaching these texts and of relating them to one another, thus bringing out their multifaceted nature. He employs a vivid style and incorporates helpful excurses and diagrams into his text to explain and illustrate particular points under discussion... In sum, we have here as useful and comprehensive an introduction to the subject, for teachers and students alike, as any encountered by me over many years of teaching in the field." Journal for the Study of the New Testament Booklist 2009--Sanford Lakoff "Journal for the Study of the New Testament "
'This would make a fine textbook or reference book for an introductory class on John at a seminary or within other academic environments. It would also make an excellent leader's reference for a pastor or other experienced lay reader teaching an adult class on John.'--Sanford Lakoff