JOHN I, II & III (Sacra Pagina) by John Painter ($39.95)*

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The Johannine Epistles are today read as an important part of the Johannine literature. Yet the meaning of the text is often unclear. Part of the problem arises because, although 1 John is called an Epistle, it lacks the formal marks of an Epistle. In 1, 2, and 3 John, John Painter illuminates the relationship 1, 2, and 3 John have to each other and to the Gospel.

Painter explains the historical context of the Johannine Epistles using a socio-rhetorical approach. The writings are shown to reflect a situation of conflict and schism within the Johannine community; they seek to persuade the readers of the truth of the writer's message. In this truth, the readers are encouraged to abide if they would have the assurance of eternal life.

Painter also examines the inseparable connection between belief and ethical life in active love for one another. Through the socio-rhetorical approach Painter brings to light the continuing relevance of these writings.

1, 2, and 3 John is divided into two parts. Chapters under 1 John are:

  1. “Introduction to the Exegesis of 1 John,”
  2. “Outline of 1 John,”
  3. “First Presentation of the Two Tests (1:6-2:27),”
  4. Excursus: Sin and Sinlessness,”
  5. Excursus: Love of the Brother/Sister: of One Another,”
  6. Excursus: The Antichrist,” “Second Presentation of the Two Tests (2:28-4:6),”
  7. “Third Presentation of the Two Tests (4:7-5:12),”
  8. “Conclusion (5:13-21), and
  9. Excursus: ‘A Sin Unto Death.’”
Chapters under 2 and 3 John are:
  1. “2 John,” “Introduction to the Exegesis of 2 John,”
  2. “Outline of 2 John,”
  3. “Prescripti 2 John 1-3,”
  4. “Body of the Letter (4-11),”
  5. “Notice of Intention to Visit (12),” and
  6. “Final Greetings (13),”
  7. “3 John,” “Introduction to the Exegesis of 3 John,”
  8. “Outline of 3 John,”
  9. “Prescript: 3 John 1-2,”
  10. “Body of Letter (3-12),” and
  11. “Final Greetings (13-15).”
John Painter is the Foundation Professor of Theology at Charles Sturt University in Canberra, Australia.

Sacra Pagina is a multi-volume commentary on the books of the New Testament.

The expression "Sacra Pagina" ("Sacred Page") originally referred to the text of Scripture. In the Middle Ages it also described the study of Scripture to which the interpreter brought the tools of grammar, rhetoric, dialectic, and philosophy.

This series presents fresh translations and modern expositions of all the books of the New Testament. Written by an international team of Catholic biblical scholars, it is intended for biblical professionals, graduate students, theologians, clergy, and religious educators. The volumes present basic introductory information and close exposition, with each author adopting a specific methodology while maintaining a focus on the issues raised by the New Testament compositions themselves.

The goal of Sacra Pagina is to provide sound, critical analysis without any loss of sensitivity to religious meaning. This series is therefore catholic in two senses of the word: inclusive in its methods and perspectives, and shaped by the context of the Catholic tradition. The Second Vatican Council described the study of "the sacred page" as the "very soul of sacred theology" (Dei Verbum 24). The volumes in this series illustrate how Catholic scholars contribute to the council's call to provide access to Sacred Scripture for all the Christian faithful. Rather than pretending to say the final word on any text, these volumes seek to open up the riches of the New Testament and to invite as many people as possible to study seriously the "sacred page."

"Sacra Pagina represents the best of contemporary and pastorally sensitive biblical interpretation for a general readership. A must for any library." —Catholic Library World

"I wholeheartedly recommend this commentary in particular and this series in general for those who regularly preach—Catholic or Protestant." —The Clergy Journal

"Sacra Pagina is a valuable addition to any professional library. And it can communicate well to the Greekless who are willing to work along with it." —Book Reviews

"I have seen Matthew, Luke, Acts, and Galations and intend to ensure that the whole series is in our library." —Vidyajyoti

"For the preaching of text. . . I wholeheartedly recommend this commentary in particular and this series in general for those who regularly preach—Catholic or Protestant." —The Clergy Journal

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