The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

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coccus ilicis
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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#101 Post by coccus ilicis » 1 year ago

Genesis wrote:
1 year ago
Hi Bobcat,

You have made a good argument for Lazarus being the Beloved Disciple. I agree that the scriptural evidence points in that direction.

Martha and Mary along with their brother Lazarus lived in Bethany not far from Jerusalem. Their home village figured prominently in the Gospel of John. Luke also records Jesus visit to their home.

(Luke 10:38-42) 38 Now as they were going their way he entered into a certain village. Here a certain woman named Martha received him as guest into the house. 39 This woman also had a sister called Mary, who, however, sat down at the feet of the Lord and kept listening to his word. 40 Martha, on the other hand, was distracted with attending to many duties. So, she came near and said: “Lord, does it not matter to you that my sister has left me alone to attend to things? Tell her, therefore, to join in helping me.” 41 In answer the Lord said to her: “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and disturbed about many things. 42 A few things, though, are needed, or just one. For her part, Mary chose the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Martha obviously felt close enough to her Lord to address him as she did. This family was close to the Son of God.

(John 11:1-4) . . .Now there was a certain man sick, Laz′a·rus of Beth′a·ny, of the village of Mary and of Martha her sister. 2 It was, in fact, the Mary that greased the Lord with perfumed oil and wiped his feet dry with her hair, whose brother Laz′a·rus was sick. 3 Therefore his sisters dispatched word to him, saying: “Lord, see! the one for whom you have affection is sick.” 4 But when Jesus heard it he said: “This sickness is not with death as its object, but is for the glory of God, in order that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Lazarus' sisters called him "the one for whom you have affection" this is an interesting reference because Jesus loved all his disciples. But it seems Lazarus was in some way singled out as one Jesus had affection for. Perhaps Lazarus was a young man too young to be an apostle but one who drew Christ toward him. Love, sincerity and humility are traits that invite love and affection.

If he as still a young man lived with his sisters then it made perfect sense for Christ to send his mother home with Lazarus who lived with women who could comfort her.
Hi Genesis,

I realize I am not one of your favourite persons at the moment. I seem to keep stepping on your toes.

But I'm glad you have quoted Lu 10 with regard to Lazarus. Have you ever wondered why Martha would ask Jesus to intervene in a domestic squabble such as this? Under normal circumstances the head of the house, i.e. father, husband or brother would be asked to intervene, not the guest. In their family, it appears the only male was the brother. Why did they not call on Lazarus to deal with this? There are only two reasons I can think of, one is that he was not present, and the other that he was no more than a boy. I'm inclined to think the latter, as there is not so much as one conversation between Jesus and Lazarus in the Bible. Jesus loved the sisters and doted on the boy, who might have been a year or two older by the time he died.

The Gospel account attributed to John contains insider information, e.g. the private conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus Jhn 3:1-12; the plot against Jesus that would have only be known to a few, and certainly not by Lazarus Jhn 11:45,46 47-50.

There simply is insufficient information to say for certain who the one whom Jesus loved was that wrote this gospel account. He wanted it to be kept secret, and it remained secret for all time, which again makes one suspect it was a member of the Sanhedrin or someone close to that inner circle. It might have suited Jesus's purpose for him to remain incognito as in this way he would know what was planned. The intriguing part is why he remained incognito and why his followers also kept his secret forevermore; they say: ... this is the disciple that bears witness about these things and that wrote these things... meaning this gospel account was in writing from the very outset and conversations were recorded by this disciple or his scribe as they occurred. ... and we know his witness it true... the we referring to this secret disciple's followers who preserved and copied this original written account.
LRW~

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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#102 Post by Genesis » 1 year ago

coccus ilicis wrote:
1 year ago
Genesis wrote:
1 year ago
Hi Bobcat,

You have made a good argument for Lazarus being the Beloved Disciple. I agree that the scriptural evidence points in that direction.

Martha and Mary along with their brother Lazarus lived in Bethany not far from Jerusalem. Their home village figured prominently in the Gospel of John. Luke also records Jesus visit to their home.

(Luke 10:38-42) 38 Now as they were going their way he entered into a certain village. Here a certain woman named Martha received him as guest into the house. 39 This woman also had a sister called Mary, who, however, sat down at the feet of the Lord and kept listening to his word. 40 Martha, on the other hand, was distracted with attending to many duties. So, she came near and said: “Lord, does it not matter to you that my sister has left me alone to attend to things? Tell her, therefore, to join in helping me.” 41 In answer the Lord said to her: “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and disturbed about many things. 42 A few things, though, are needed, or just one. For her part, Mary chose the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Martha obviously felt close enough to her Lord to address him as she did. This family was close to the Son of God.

(John 11:1-4) . . .Now there was a certain man sick, Laz′a·rus of Beth′a·ny, of the village of Mary and of Martha her sister. 2 It was, in fact, the Mary that greased the Lord with perfumed oil and wiped his feet dry with her hair, whose brother Laz′a·rus was sick. 3 Therefore his sisters dispatched word to him, saying: “Lord, see! the one for whom you have affection is sick.” 4 But when Jesus heard it he said: “This sickness is not with death as its object, but is for the glory of God, in order that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Lazarus' sisters called him "the one for whom you have affection" this is an interesting reference because Jesus loved all his disciples. But it seems Lazarus was in some way singled out as one Jesus had affection for. Perhaps Lazarus was a young man too young to be an apostle but one who drew Christ toward him. Love, sincerity and humility are traits that invite love and affection.

If he as still a young man lived with his sisters then it made perfect sense for Christ to send his mother home with Lazarus who lived with women who could comfort her.
Hi Genesis,

I realize I am not one of your favourite persons at the moment. I seem to keep stepping on your toes.

But I'm glad you have quoted Lu 10 with regard to Lazarus. Have you ever wondered why Martha would ask Jesus to intervene in a domestic squabble such as this? Under normal circumstances the head of the house, i.e. father, husband or brother would be asked to intervene, not the guest. In their family, it appears the only male was the brother. Why did they not call on Lazarus to deal with this? There are only two reasons I can think of, one is that he was not present, and the other that he was no more than a boy. I'm inclined to think the latter, as there is not so much as one conversation between Jesus and Lazarus in the Bible. Jesus loved the sisters and doted on the boy, who might have been a year or two older by the time he died.

The Gospel account attributed to John contains insider information, e.g. the private conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus Jhn 3:1-12; the plot against Jesus that would have only be known to a few, and certainly not by Lazarus Jhn 11:45,46 47-50.

There simply is insufficient information to say for certain who the one whom Jesus loved was that wrote this gospel account. He wanted it to be kept secret, and it remained secret for all time, which again makes one suspect it was a member of the Sanhedrin or someone close to that inner circle. It might have suited Jesus's purpose for him to remain incognito as in this way he would know what was planned. The intriguing part is why he remained incognito and why his followers also kept his secret forevermore; they say: ... this is the disciple that bears witness about these things and that wrote these things... meaning this gospel account was in writing from the very outset and conversations were recorded by this disciple or his scribe as they occurred. ... and we know his witness it true... the we referring to this secret disciple's followers who preserved and copied this original written account.
But I'm glad you have quoted Lu 10 with regard to Lazarus. Have you ever wondered why Martha would ask Jesus to intervene in a domestic squabble such as this? Under normal circumstances the head of the house, i.e. father, husband or brother would be asked to intervene, not the guest.
Every event reported in the Gospels is a teaching, a lesson, in and of itself. The lesson is that JESUS taught that participating in, and listening to, what he was saying and teaching was more important even for women than serving meals.

Why Lazarus is not mentioned has no relevance to the account. There were other male disciples there as well but they are not mentioned, (Luke 10:38) . . .Now as they were going their way he entered into a certain village. Here a certain woman named Martha received him as guest into the house. . .

It was a teaching from their Master, Lazarus had no part in that just as Peter and the rest of Apostles had no part in teaching while Jesus was on earth. It was not Lazarus who was speaking it was Christ! If Lazarus was present he would have no authority to tell his sister Mary (Luke 10:39) . . .who, however, sat down at the feet of the Lord and kept listening to his word. . .to get up, stop listening to the Lord, and go help in the kitchen.

Only Christ would have such authority and he refused the request.

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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#103 Post by Bobcat » 1 year ago

I came across an interesting footnote in the NET Bible at Mt 11:27 that related to the fourth gospel. The footnote (# 61) says:
sn This verse, frequently referred to as the “bolt from the Johannine blue,” has been noted for its conceptual similarity to statements in John’s Gospel (Jn 10:15; 17:2). The authority of the Son and the Father are totally intertwined. The statement here also occurs in Luke 10:22, and serves as a warning against drawing a simplistic dichotomy between Jesus’ teaching in the synoptic gospels and Jesus’ teaching in the Gospel of John.

I had never heard this phrase before ("bolt from the Johannine blue"). For any interested, here are the results of a Google search for this phrase.


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#104 Post by Bobcat » 9 months ago

A brief discussion on StackExchange about whether there are linguistic similarities between Revelation and the fourth gospel: Here.

And another discussion on StackExchange about whether Jn 21:20-24 is a postscript to the gospel account. This was theorized in this link where the writer believes that the postscript was written by the apostle John after Lazarus had died and ended up causing John to be credited with being the writer of the fourth gospel many years after John himself had died.

This StackExchange discussion also deals with the subject of whether John chapter 21 is a postscript.

And another discussion on the same forum regarding internal evidence for the writer of the fourth gospel: Here. And this discussion deals with external evidence.

I wanted to catalog these things while I have their web location available to me.


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#105 Post by Bobcat » 5 months ago

For what follows, I am not sure there is any connection with Lazarus per se, but it is in the 4th gospel account. So I'll leave any possible connection with Lazarus for later. But now, on to the thought . . .

In Jn chapter 21 Peter expresses the idea of going fishing. (Jn 21:2, 3) He and some of the other disciples (including the "beloved disciple") do just that. Eventually, Jesus arrives and helps them get a big catch.

After the ensuing breakfast Jesus asks Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?" (Jn 21:15 ESV; Compare Jn 21:15 NET) The question arises, What were "these" that Jesus was referring to?

For all my WT life the answer was the fish, or, by implication, the fishing business, of which Peter was part of. And I will say right off the bat that I can see where the context would allow for that idea.

But I ran across an alternative explanation that also makes a lot of sense. The NET Bible discusses it in a footnote. But I will quote from Constable's Notes first:
Jesus asked Peter if he had more love for Jesus than he had for “these things” (Gr. pleon touton). What did Jesus have in mind? Was it the fishing boats and nets that Peter had returned to, or was it the other disciples? The comparison seems more likely to have been with the love of the other disciples for Jesus since Peter had earlier professed complete devotion to Jesus in the upper room (cf. Jn 13:37; 18:10). Peter had claimed that his love for and commitment to Jesus were so strong that even if all the other disciples forsook Him he would not (Matt 26:33; Mark 14:29; Luke 22:33). Still Peter had denied that he was one of Jesus’ disciples and that he even knew Jesus three times. Thus Jesus’ question was reasonable. He wanted Peter to think about just how strong his love for Jesus really was.

What follows is the NET footnote (# 30 at Jn 21:15). It has the pro and con of the argument:
tn To whom (or what) does “these” (τούτων, toutōn) refer? Three possibilities are suggested: (1) τούτων should be understood as neuter, “these things,” referring to the boats, nets, and fishing gear nearby. In light of Peter’s statement in Jn 21:3, “I am going fishing,” some have understood Peter to have renounced his commission in light of his denials of Jesus. Jesus, as he restores Peter and forgives him for his denials, is asking Peter if he really loves his previous vocation more than he loves Jesus. Three things may be said in evaluation of this view: (a) it is not at all necessary to understand Peter’s statement in Jn 21:3 as a renouncement of his discipleship, as this view of the meaning of τούτων would imply; (b) it would probably be more likely that the verb would be repeated in such a construction (see Jn 7:31 for an example where the verb is repeated); and (c) as R. E. Brown has observed (John [AB], 2:1103) by Johannine standards the choice being offered to Peter between material things and the risen Jesus would seem rather ridiculous, especially after the disciples had realized whom it was they were dealing with (the Lord, see Jn 21:12). (2) τούτων refers to the other disciples, meaning “Do you love me more than you love these other disciples?” The same objection mentioned as (c) under (1) would apply here: Could the author, in light of the realization of who Jesus is which has come to the disciples after the resurrection, and which he has just mentioned in Jn 21:12, seriously present Peter as being offered a choice between the other disciples and the risen Jesus? This leaves option (3), that τούτων refers to the other disciples, meaning “Do you love me more than these other disciples do?” It seems likely that there is some irony here: Peter had boasted in Jn 13:37, “I will lay down my life for you,” and the synoptics present Peter as boasting even more explicitly of his loyalty to Jesus (“Even if they all fall away, I will not,” Matt 26:33; Mark 14:29). Thus the semantic force of what Jesus asks Peter here amounts to something like “Now, after you have denied me three times, as I told you you would, can you still affirm that you love me more than these other disciples do?” The addition of the auxiliary verb “do” in the translation is used to suggest to the English reader the third interpretation, which is the preferred one.

So anyways, I thought I would put this out there for any interested. It was a completely new possibility for me. Jn 21:15 was discussed briefly last night at the CLAM (10-13-2020), but as usual, they were only parroting what the WT says about it (i. e. the fishing business understanding of the verse).


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#106 Post by Bobcat » 4 months ago

And just a follow on to the previous post, below is the commentary on Jn 21:15 from Barne's Notes:
So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. - Jn 21:15

Lovest thou me more than these? - There is a slight ambiguity here in the original, as there is in our translation. The word these may be in the neuter gender, and refer to these things his boat, his fishing utensils, and his employments; or it may be in the masculine, and refer to the apostles. In the former sense it would mean, "Lovest thou me more than thou lovest these objects? Art thou now willing, from love to me, to forsake all these, and go and preach my gospel to the nations of the earth?" In the other sense, which is probably the true sense, it would mean, "Lovest thou me more than these other apostles love me?" In this question Jesus refers to the profession of superior attachment to him which Peter had made before his death Matthew 26:33; "Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended." Compare John 13:37. Jesus here slightly reproves him for that confident assertion, reminds him of his sad and painful denial, and now puts this direct and pointed question to him to know what was the present state of his feelings. After all that Peter had had to humble him, the Saviour inquired of him what had been the effect on his mind, and whether it had tended to prepare him for the arduous toils in which he was about to engage. This question we should all put to ourselves. It is a matter of much importance that we should ourselves know what is the effect of the dealings of divine Providence on our hearts, and what is our present state of feeling toward the Lord Jesus Christ.

Thou knowest that I love thee - Peter now made no pretensions to love superior to his brethren. His sad denial had convinced him of the folly of that claim; but still he could appeal to the Searcher of the heart, and say that he knew that he loved him. Here is the expression of a humbled soul - soul made sensible of its weakness and need of strength, yet with evidence of true attachment to the Saviour. It is not the most confident pretensions that constitute the highest proof of love to Christ; and the happiest and best state of feeling is when we can with humility, yet with confidence, look to the Lord Jesus and say, "Thou knowest that I love thee."

Feed my lambs - The word here rendered "feed" means the care afforded by furnishing nutriment for the flock. In the next verse there is a change in the Greek, and the word rendered feed denotes rather the care, guidance, and protection which a shepherd extends to his flock. By the use of both these words, it is supposed that our Saviour intended that a shepherd was both to offer the proper food for his flock and to govern it; or, as we express it, to exercise the office of a pastor. The expression is taken from the office of a shepherd, with which the office of a minister of the gospel is frequently compared. It means, as a good shepherd provides for the wants of his flock, so the pastor in the church is to furnish food for the soul, or so to exhibit truth that the faith of believers may be strengthened and their hope confirmed.

My lambs - The church is often compared to a flock. See John 10:1-16. Here the expression my lambs undoubtedly refers to the tender and the young in the Christian church; to those who are young in years and in Christian experience. The Lord Jesus saw, what has been confirmed in the experience of the church, that the success of the gospel among men depended on the care which the ministry would extend to those in early life. It is in obedience to this command that Sunday schools have been established, and no means of fulfilling this command of the Saviour have been found so effectual as to extend patronage to those schools. It is not merely, therefore, the privilege, it is the solemn duty of ministers of the gospel to countenance and patronize those schools.

In this commentary Barnes shows that "these" could, grammatically, be either the fish/fishing/fishing equipment (neuter plural) or the other disciples (male plural) then present. (The Greek inflection is the same for both.) But he feels that the disciples fits better.


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#107 Post by Bobcat » 2 months ago

The January 2021 WT (p. 8), in the Preview statement to Study Article 2 says (in part), "The apostle John is believed to be "the disciple whom Jesus loved." (Jn 21:7)"

It was curious to me that they left it at "believed to be." I looked thru the article but I didn't see where they elaborated on that passive statement of belief. It was merely stated as a given in an article entitled, Lessons From "the Disciple Whom Jesus Loved."

(Although the study article does not elaborate on why they believe John was the "beloved disciple," it does make several indirect statements that are derivatives of that belief, such as John being the writer of the 4th gospel account (compare with this post) and John being given responsibility by Jesus to take care of his mother Mary (compare with this post).


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#108 Post by Bobcat » 4 weeks ago

For visitors to this forum, welcome!

Today's WT Study (3/14/21) discusses the "disciple Jesus loved." The preview note in the WT lesson says that the apostle John is believed to be that disciple. But this thread has amassed a great deal of scriptural and linked evidence that argues that this disciple was Lazarus. (For just one example of why some prefer Lazarus, see here.)

The reader is invited to peruse this thread to see for him/her self and arrive at your own conclusions.


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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#109 Post by Stranger » 4 weeks ago

Bobcat wrote:
4 weeks ago
The reader is invited to peruse this thread to see for him/her self and arrive at your own conclusions.
Hi Bobcat,

This is in response to requirement of an invitation, I'm sure it was just a clerical error of not leaving the reminder to it Bobcat. (RSVP)*

A good many (and/or possibly bad) biblical sss's (scholars searchers and seekers), love to push this point about some disciple that Jesus favored (loved) more than the rest.

However, the practice of giving unfair treatment to one person or group at the expense of another (favoritism) was/is not on Jesus' docket, that would be under Jehovah's jurisdiction according to the WT. Hence the necessity for your invitation Bobcat, and thank you for it. You're a good man!

So I for one (and by no means am I favored), very much appreciate the invitation. Count me in for two attending, myself and a "guest escort".

We'll be having the offered main course with no special requests.

Cordially yours'

Stranger, (Pr 12:2)

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Re: The Disciple Jesus Loved = Lazarus?

#110 Post by Bobcat » 4 weeks ago

Thanks Stranger, for the kind thought.

I wanted to add yet another possible indication that Lazarus is the "beloved disciple":

In Jn 19:26, 27, after Jesus makes the assignment of his mother to be cared for by the "beloved disciple," the text says that, "And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home." (For the idiomatic meaning of "hour" compare Jn 19:26-27 NET)

If one considers the setting, it makes it more likely that this was Lazarus. The place where Jesus is executed is Golgotha, just outside of NW Jerusalem. This is easily within brief walking distance of Lazarus' house which is in Bethany (walking E of Jerusalem - see here). John, on the other hand, is from Galilee which is several days walk from Jerusalem (especially travelling with an elderly and grieving woman). (Compare Lu 2:41-45, especially Lu 2:44; For another map showing both Golgotha and Bethany see here. And here is a map showing both Jerusalem and Galilee.)

Consider also that the apostles were in Jerusalem for several days after Jesus' death. (See the part of this post that has "Appendix A7-H" from the appendix of the rNWT. Or, if you have Chrome this link should take you directly to that part of the post.) This would mean that any return by John to his own home (supposing he had his own home, which the scriptures don't say, but it does for Lazarus - Jn 11:20, 31; 12:1, 2), this would have been several days after Jesus' death at the earliest. But Lazarus could have easily had Mary in his own home soon after Jesus' death, that very evening. (Jn 11:18)

For other posts in this thread discussing Jesus' giving care of his mother to the "beloved disciple," see this post and this one.


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