Partly due top being out of town last weekend, partly due to work schedule and partly due to my ISP having some serious server down issues over the last week.
In regards to the The one who comes from above passage:
As I mentioned before — real sheep and goats stuff. I prefer both/and to either/or and so the make-a-choice-or-you’ll-be-sorry school of spirituality tends to stick in my craw bit — same trouble with Kierkegaard.
This passage appears to be strong Trinitarian strong Incarnation stuff. Which would tend towards traditional orthodoxy. Larry has expressed reservations about such before – usually by stating the standard historical-critical claims that the synoptic Jesus is closer in time and therefore closer in truth to the real Jesus.
I tend to read literarily. I also don’t allow that out. If John is a faithful witness to the Christ-light shining then whether he wrote in Jesus’ day or wrote in 1964 is frankly irrelevant. Does his witness find accord in me? Does the the same Christ-light in me speak the same truth? If it speaks it in a differing tongue — how may I translate it?
So John places this witness on Jesus’ lips — which must mean John counts it as significant. Yet it is in third person. Either John does not want Jesus to be the one referred to here or he does not want Jesus in a position of testifying to himself.
My thought, unformed — maybe wrong — maybe missing something — is that John is writing in hopes that what he writes will help us to hear the light / Spirit / that-of-God speak in us in confirmation.
So the critical question remains: what does it mean to accept the testimony of the one who comes from above?