New Testament Footnotes
By John A. Tvedtnes

In preparation for the 2007 Gospel Doctrine class study of the New Testament, Kevin Barney, John Jenkins, and I have posted our “Footnotes to the New Testament for Latter-day Saints” at the “Feasting on the Word” website. Each of us worked on different parts of the New Testament.

I, for example, prepared the Johannine material attributed to the apostle John (the gospel of John, the book of Revelation, and the three epistles of John). The basic text is that of the King James version of the Bible, augmented by notes on the meaning of archaic English terms and comments on the meaning of the Greek text, as well as extensive cross-references to other scriptural passages.

In addition to a general introduction to the New Testament, there is an introduction to each of the books in the New Testament, describing not only the book’s authorship and contents, but additional facts of interest to Latter-day Saint readers.  Here, for example, is a section drawn from the introduction to John’s gospel:

Doctrine and Covenants 93

So powerful was John’s witness that it became the basis of a revelation to Joseph Smith, recorded in D&C 93. Some have believed that this section was based on a revelation to John the Baptist because a portion of it refers to the baptism of Christ. But knowing that the apostle John was a disciple of the Baptist and that he had likely been present at the baptism of Christ makes it likely that he is the one who declared,

And I, John, bear record that I beheld his glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father… And I, John, bear record, and lo, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Ghost descended upon him in the form of a dove, and sat upon him, and there came a voice out of heaven saying: This is my beloved Son. And I, John, bear record that he received a fulness of the glory of the Father: And he received all power, both in heaven and on earth, and the glory of the Father was with him, for he dwelt in him. (D&C 93:11, 15-17)

Additional evidence that D&C 93 is based on the testimony of the apostle John is that it contains much verbiage from the gospel of John, including elements found in John chapters 14-16. This portion of the book deals with events that took place at the time of the Last Supper, long after the death of John the Baptist.

John recorded that, at the Last Supper, Jesus told his apostles, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning” (John 15:26-27).

John was obedient to this commandment, leaving us his testimony in the gospel account that bears his name. And that name, rendered in the Greek New Testament as Ioannes, is Hebrew Yohanan, meaning “God is gracious” – a fitting epithet for the apostle whom Jesus loved.

The following chart compares passages in the gospel of John with those found in section 93 of the Doctrine and Covenants.

D&C 93

 

John

     

1 Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am;

 

1:12 …to them that believe on his name

14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

     

2 And that I am the true light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

 

1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. [See also verse 4.]

9:5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

12:46 I am come a light into the world . . .

     

3 And that I am in the Father, and the Father in me, and the Father and I are one

 

10:30 I and my Father are one.

10:38 …the Father is in me, and I in him.

14:10 …I am in the Father, and the Father in me

14:11 …I am in the Father, and the Father in me

14:20 …I am in my Father

14:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee

17:11  that< they may be one, as we are.

17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee

     

4 …I was in the world and made flesh my tabernacle, and dwelt among the sons of men.

5 I was in the world and received of my Father, and the works of him were plainly manifest.

  1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.

1:10 He was in the world…

9:5 …I am in the world

5:36 …the works which the Father hath given me

10:32 …Many good works have I shewed you from my Father

10:37 If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.

[See also 14:10-12.]

     

6 And John saw and bore record of the fulness of my glory, and the fulness of John’s record is hereafter to be revealed.

7 And he bore record, saying: I saw his glory, that he was in the beginning, before the world was;

 

1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

1:14 …and we beheld his glory…

1:16 And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.

1:17 …grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

17:5 …O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

17:24 …that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

     

8 Therefore, in the beginning the Word was, for he was the Word, even the messenger of salvation. [See also verses 21, 23, 29.]

 

1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. [See also verse 2.]

     

9 The light and the Redeemer of the world; the Spirit of truth, who came into the world, because the world was made by him, and in him was the life of men and the light of men.

10. The worlds were made by him; men were made by him; all things were made by him, and through him, and of him.

 

1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

[See also D&C 93:23, below.]

     

11 And I, John, bear record that I beheld his glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, even the Spirit of truth, which came and dwelt in the flesh, and dwelt among us.

12 And I, John, saw that he received not of the fulness at the first, but received grace for grace.

13 And he received not of the fulness at first, but continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness

 

1:14 …(and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth

1:16 And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.

1:17 …grace and truth came by Jesus Christ

[See also D&C 93:23, below.]

     

14 And thus he was called the Son of God, because he received not of the fulness at the first.

 

Of the 48 times the title “Son of God” occurs in the New Testament, 19 of these occurrences are in the writings of John – as many times as in all three synoptics together. See John 1:34, 49; 3:18; 5:25; 6:69; 9:35; 10:36; 11:4, 27; 19:7; 20:31 ; 1 John 3:8; 4:15; 5:5, 10, 12-13, 20 ; Revelation 2:18.

     

15 And I, John, bear record, and lo, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Ghost descended upon him in the form of a dove, and sat upon him, and there came a voice out of heaven saying: This is my beloved Son.

16 And I, John, bear record that he received a fulness of the glory of the Father;

 

1:32 And John [the Baptist] bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

1:34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

     

17 And he received all power, both in heaven and on earth, and the glory of the Father was with him, for he dwelt in him.

 

14:10 …the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

[Cf. Matthew 28:18.]

     

18 And it shall come to pass, that if you are faithful you shall receive the fulness of the record of John.

 

1:16 And of his fulness have all we received…

     

19 I give unto you these sayings that you may understand and know how to worship, and know what you worship, that you may come unto the Father in my name, and in due time receive of his fulness.

 

4:22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.

4:23 …the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

4:24 …they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

     

20 For if you keep my commandments you shall receive of his fulness, and be glorified in me as I am in the Father; therefore, I say unto you, you shall receive grace for grace.

 

[See D&C 93:11-14, above.]

     

21 And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the beginning with the Father, and am the Firstborn

 

[See D&C 93:7-8, above.]

     

22 And all those who are begotten through me are partakers of the glory of the same, and are the church of the Firstborn

 

1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God

[Cf. 1 John 5:18, “We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself” and 1 John 3:1-2, “…that we should be called the sons of God…  now are we the sons of God.”]

     

23 Ye were also in the beginning with the Father; that which is Spirit, even the Spirit of truth;

 

4:23 …the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth

4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

14:16-17 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter .the Spirit of truth…

15:26 …the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father . . .

16:13 …the Spirit of truth… will guide you into all truth

[Cf. 1 John 4:6, Hereby know we the spirit of truth,” and 1 John 5:6, “the Spirit is truth”]

     

24 And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come;

 

18:38 Pilate saith unto him, What is truth?

     

25 And whatsoever is more or less than this is the spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning.

 

8:44 …the devil… was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him… he is a liar, and the father of it. [Cf. 1 John 2:22.]

     

26 The Spirit of truth is of God. I am the Spirit of truth, and John bore record of me, saying: He received a fulness of truth, yea, even of all truth;

27 And no man receiveth a fulness unless he keepeth his commandments.

 

1:16 And of his fulness have all we received…

14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments… [Cf. 1 John 2:3; 5:2-3.]

15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love [Cf. 1 John 3:22.]

     

28 He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light, until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things.

29 Man was also in the beginning with God. Intelligence, or the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be.

30 All truth is independent in that sphere in which God has placed it, to act for itself, as all intelligence also; otherwise there is no existence.

 

3:21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light…

     

31 Behold, here is the agency of man, and here is the condemnation of man; because that which was from the beginning [i.e., Christ] is plainly manifest unto them, and they receive not the light.

32 And every man whose spirit receiveth not the light is under condemnation.

 

1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

33 For man is spirit. The elements are eternal, and spirit and element, inseparably connected, receive a fulness of joy;

34 And when separated, man cannot receive a fulness of joy.

 

4:24 God is a Spirit…

     

35 The elements are the tabernacle of God; yea, man is the tabernacle of God, even temples; and whatsoever temple is defiled, God shall destroy that temple.

 

2:19 …Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

2:21 …he spake of the temple of his body.

     

36 The glory of God is intelligence, or, in other words, light and truth.

37 Light and truth forsake that evil one.

38 Every spirit of man was innocent in the beginning; and God having redeemed man from the fall, men became again, in their infant state, innocent before God.

39 And that wicked one cometh and taketh away light and truth, through disobedience, from the children of men, and because of the tradition of their fathers.

40 But I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth.

 

[See D&C 93:23, above.]

It is our sincere hope that making this in-depth on-line study of the New Testament available to Latter-day Saints will improve their understanding of the marvelous teachings of Jesus Christ and his disciples in the meridian of time.

To access the contents of “Footnotes to the New Testament for Latter-day Saints,” go to: http://feastupontheword.org/Site:NTFootnotes.


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