The Gospel of John

Next Session: Oct 21, 2024

The Gospel of John stands apart from the other three Gospels, giving a different, though complementary account of Jesus’ ministry, death, and resurrection. In light of its unique voice amongst the Gospels, John has been of central importance for the history of Christian thought, providing key verses and images for the Church’s theological contemplation. This course explores the Gospel of John in its theological and historical contexts and equips students to become more adept, insightful readers of the Gospel. The course is attentive to themes that run throughout the Gospel and provides a coherent reading of the Gospel, treating it as a literary masterpiece meant to be read with its major goal in view: that you, the reader, come to know and understand that the Logos became flesh for your sake. Students will come away from the course better informed and ready to intelligently read and understand the Gospel.

Course Content

Unit 1 

  • The Gospel of John: Historical Background
  • Themes in the Gospel of John: Literary and Theological
  • John 1: The New Creation

Unit 2

  • The Wedding at Cana
  • Nicodemus and the Samaritan Woman
  • Feeding of the 5000 and the Bread of Life Discourse

Unit 3

  • Healing on the Sabbath
  • Before Abraham Was, I AM
  • The Man Born Blind

Unit 4

  • Jesus, Gate and Shepherd
  • The Resuscitation of Lazarus
  • Anointed for Death

Unit 5

  • All Love is Cruciform
  • That They May Be One
  • The Arrest of Jesus

Unit 6

  • The Crucifixion of Jesus Christ
  • The Resurrection of Jesus Christ
  • The Final Chapter

Course Format

  • Created by Notre Dame Theology Professor.
  • Six weeks in duration, with one week for orientation.
  • Typically 15-20 students in each course.
  • All lecture text available online in text format.
  • Supplemental readings are provided to encourage further exploration of topic, internet links provided for all readings.
  • Written assignments (250 words) required.
  • Facilitator-moderated Zoom sessions with students in course.

Required Texts

  • All course materials are available online in the course.

Participation Requirements

  • Read assigned chapters from the Gospel and accompanying texts; keep notes, questions, and comments for class discussion.
  • Participate in the class discussion using the Forums area: post at least 2 comments, questions, or responses per unit.
  • Write 250 words in response to the assignment in each unit.
  • Participate in at least 4 scheduled chat sessions throughout the course.
  • Complete the course evaluation.

Time Expectations

4 to 6 hours per week, depending on your learning style and schedule.

Course Certificate

A certificate of completion awarding 35 contact hours will be sent upon completion of all course requirements.

Dr. Joshua McManaway

Dr. Joshua McManaway

At the McGrath Institute for Church Life, Josh works primarily on developing curriculum for STEP courses. In addition to this, he teaches in the Theology program at Holy Cross College.

Josh is from Raleigh, North Carolina. He graduated from East Carolina University with a B.A. in Classics and Religion. He holds an M.A. in Early Christian Studies and a Ph.D in the History of Christianity from the University of Notre Dame. His dissertation, titled, “Nestorius Latinus: The Latin Reception and Critique of Nestorius of Constantinople” explores how Latin theologians from the 5th to 8th centuries understood and critiqued Nestorius. His research focuses principally on early and Medieval Christianity.

Josh lives in South Bend, Indiana. He enjoys learning languages, reading, brewing beer, roasting and drinking coffee, and cycling.