If you’ve studied the Four Gospels, you may have noticed that each of the Gospels’ writers has a different focus. I have only read Matthew and John in my new state of mind!
What I mean is that I am sure I’ve read them all, but before a year or two ago, I was reading with blind eyes. I was reading to read and not studying the word. Now that I study, I can see more in the text than I had before my eyes were opened.
What I’ve noticed in these two Gospels is that the writer of the Gospel of Matthew reveals the path that we must all take to reach salvation and redemption. Its audience is devoted followers of the Messiah who accept the laws of Yahuwah and the idea that they must be different from gentiles practicing false doctrine and worship.
Matthew also focussed heavily on Yahushua’s audience knowing their own identity and what that identity required of them, i.e. Keeping God’s laws and commandments while demonstrating the same compassion and mercy that Yah demonstrates toward Israel toward the lost sheep who were still in sin. It demonstrates that Yahushua’s audience is to become as perfect as the Father and how to attain such perfection.
On the other hand, the Gospel of John reveals the identity of the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Chief Priests and others who were called Jews. He distinguishes the sheep that Yahushua talked about in Matthew, from the people who lived in Judea and practiced a collection of traditions that we call Judaism.
In fact, John indisputably indicates that they are descendants of Abraham, but not descendants of Israel, as their people were never slaves. (John 8:33) Of course, descendants of Israel are synonymously known for being an enslaved people. It is the basis of their entire existence. It is because they were enslaved in Egypt that they were established as God’s covenant people. Each time they defied Yah, they were re-enslaved. The “Jews” the Messiah is talking to in John 8:33, are descendants of Abraham that were never enslaved. Definitive proof that they were not Israelites.
John repeatedly reveals and confirms the truth that the New Testament “Jews” were not all Israelites. Particularly, the persecuting leaders of the Israelites were not Israelites, although they were descendants of Abraham who were responsible for killing the prophets that had come before Yahushua. They simply continued their tradition of killing Israel’s prophets when they killed our Messiah.
In another article I wrote, “The Mysterious New Testament Jews”, I examine how the writer of the Gospel of John distinguishes the Messiah’s people and target audience, from their enemy, the elite ruling class of Jews.
What is revealed in this relationship between “Jews” is that one group of “Jews” was subservient to the other. The lost sheep of the house of Israel (Matthew 15:24), as Yahushua calls them, were servants to the children of the devil, as Yahushua calls them. (John 8:44)
So, while Matthew focuses on telling us who we are and what we are capable of and Yah’s expectations for us, John tells us who our enemy is, what they are capable of, and what should be expected of them.
Thus, the Book of Revelation makes more sense:
I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. – Revelations 2:9
Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee. – Revelation 3:9
The synagogue of Satan (the adversary) is and has always been the entity that practices a corrupt form of Judaic tradition, but are not Israelites, or as it’s stated here, those “which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie.”
Yahuwah wasn’t talking about some entity that would rise, but one that had existed before and during his lifetime.
John reveals, in this gospel, who the synagogue of Satan is, by distinguishing them from the Messiahs target audience. So, if you want to know whose who and who did what, or more importantly, who is doing what, study the Gospel of John.
As the book comes to a close, the writer reveals his own identity as the beloved disciple of Yahushua but never reveals his name. This disciple’s purpose was different from Simon Peter’s. When Peter wondered what would be the fate of the beloved disciple who wrote this Gospel of John, Yahushua basically told him to mind his business. He says, “If I want him to live forever until I return, what is it to you?”
So, in closing, the writer of the gospel that is attributed to John points out that we are not all called to do the same thing. Some of us will endure until the return, while others will die in the fight. Some will feed the sheep, and others will simply be the beloved of the Messiah until their purpose is revealed.
This writer’s purpose is revealed in this book, the Gospel of John, where he exposes the identity of the synagogue of Satan. Also, if this writer is John as is commonly assumed, then he also teaches us the deepest truths taught to him by the Messiah in first, second, and third John and the Book of Revelation.
If you’ve studied this book, tell us what messages stood out to you.