More than simply a series of chapters on the theology of John’s Gospel, Jesus Is the Christ relates each of John’s teachings to his declared aim, expressed in John 20:30–31: “Jesus did many other signs before his disciples, which have not been written in this book; but these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name.” Each chapter in Morris’ book takes up some facet or aspect of John’s expressed aim.
For an age still asking the question “who is Jesus?,” Leon Morris argues convincingly that John’s entire Gospel was written to show that the human Jesus is the Christ, or Messiah, as well as the Son of God. But it is Morris’ firm conviction that John’s purpose was evangelical as well as theological—that is, John wrote his book so that readers might believe in Christ and as a result have eternal life.
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“John uses the word sēmeion 17 times, of which 11 refer to the miracles of Jesus.” (Page 4)
“The point of all this is that when Jesus used the ‘I AM’ construction he was speaking in the style of deity” (Page 107)
“John’s use of the term ‘sign’, then, is very important. For him it is a way of drawing attention to the hand of God in the ministry of Jesus.” (Page 13)
“‘The real significance of the miracles of Jesus is that they point forward to Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension, to the transformation brought by the new age of the Spirit, and thus lead to a faith in Jesus the (crucified) Christ, the (risen) Son of God.’” (Page 8)
“But people thought that if there was just one incontrovertible happening that showed in a blaze of light that Jesus was a heavenly being, all would be made clear. It was this kind of sign that Jesus steadfastly refused to produce. He was to be recognized by who and what he was6 and what he habitually did. There were signs there for those who had eyes to see, but there was to be no dazzling performance that would compel belief of some sort from everyone who saw it. The demand for such a sign is basically a demand that God should act in accordance with the ideas of the scribes and Pharisees, that God be a god made in the likeness of humankind. So Jesus calls those who asked for this kind of sign ‘an evil and adulterous generation.’” (Pages 3–4)