Regular readers and others who know me will know that I did my doctoral dissertation on the Christology of the Gospel of John. With my primary research focus having moved elsewhere, I am delighted when I get to teach my upper-level class on the Gospel of John and return my attention there.
I’m still trying to decide which commentary or other textbook(s) to assign for the course. Older ones like that by Raymond Brown are no longer readily available. The students do not have Greek, and so that rules out a few options. A commentary spanning multiple volumes would be excessive.
There are a great many commentaries on the Gospel of John, and so the challenge in picking a textbook for such a course is really a matter of being spoiled for choice. There are classic ones still in print by Culpepper, Moloney, Kysar, and
relatively more recent ones by O’Day, Bruner and Michaels.
Yet most of the commentaries and other books on the Gospel of John that were published since I wrote The Only True God are ones that I am relatively unfamiliar with except superficially. One exception is the textbook I used last time, Andrew Lincoln’s commentary, which students seemed to find helpful and at just the right level. Before that I used Charles Talbert’s which I regret is out of print. Jerome Neyrey’s is another that looks promising, which I haven’t used for a class before, although I know Neyrey’s scholarship on John well from my time as a graduate student.
There are other books which I would consider if there were some way to preview them online, such as Befriending The Beloved Disciple: A Jewish Reading of the Gospel of John. Plus ones that take a more thematic approach (e.g. Paul Anderson’s The Riddles of the Fourth Gospel: An Introduction to John and Raymond Brown’s poshumously-published Introduction) which are perhaps less useful for a course in which I plan to work through the Gospel from start to finish.
And so one advantage of blogging is the possibility of crowdsourcing such dilemmas. If you’ve taught or taken a course on the Gospel of John in recent years, what textbook did you use, and would you recommend it?