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The Transferral of Symbols for the Law to Jesus in the Fourth Gospel—"Bread", "Water" and "Light" : Life

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Chapter Summary

In Judaism the Torah was called "bread", "water", "light" and was considered to be "life". These are all themes which are central to the Fourth Gospel and many authors believe that John has consciously transferred these attributes or symbols from the Torah to Jesus. Of the four attributes, only one is explicitly transferred from the Torah to Jesus: life. The manna and the bread of life stand in the same relationship to each other as prophecy to its realization, promise to fulfilment. The central point of the contrast is the power to give life. The bread from heaven Moses gave is incapable of giving life; only the true bread from heaven the Father gives in Jesus can give eternal life.

Keywords: bread; Fourth Gospel; Jesus; John; Judaism; life; light; manna; symbols from Torah; water

10.1163/9789004266537_017
/content/books/b9789004266537s017
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