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The Community of the Beloved Disciple

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  101 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
The life, loves and hates of an individual church in New Testament times. Considers the life and writings of St. John.
Paperback, 204 pages
Published December 31st 1979 by Paulist Press (first published January 1st 1978)
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Rick Edwards
Jul 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
After literally decades of study of the Gospel of John, during which he amassed an encyclopedic knowledge of the scholarly work on the subject, Ray Brown gained a profound sense of the dynamics of the early Christian community from which this gospel emerged. In this engrossing study, he presents his take on the character of the original Johannine circle, its dynamics vis a vis the synagogue, and the tensions, controversies, and schisms that shaped the Johannine corpus in the form in which we kno ...more
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Father Raymond E. Brown was the foremost scholar of Johannine literature--and possibly all New Testament literature--in the 20th century. I took up The Community of the Beloved Disciple for a graduate-level New Testament course, and though it should be accessible to any serious student of the Bible, the highly academic presentation could prove to be somewhat dry. Also, as Father Brown himself writes in the preface, he hopes for most readers this book "will not constitute their maiden voyage into ...more
Chris Jaffe
Jan 01, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a very informative from a scholar who is deeply knowledgeable about his subject matter - but it's almost impossible to read. To be fair, he notes at the outset that this book isn't for a newbie just starting to explore this material for the first time. OK, but even taking that into account, it's hard to plow through. I often had to re-read what I'd just read - and often the re-reading didn't help one bit.

I came to this book after reading several of Bart Ehrman's books on the New Testame
Nov 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
“I would like to study the history of the Johannine community (which ultimately involves questions of church and sect) by using a fruitful approach that has been opened up in Johannine scholarship of the last ten years. This is based on the suggestion that the Gospel must be read on several levels, so that it tells us the story both of Jesus and of the community that believed in him. Let me discuss that suggestion in general and then some of the cautions that must be kept in mind when one accept ...more
Jul 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
From a reservoir of scholarship, Brown posits a history of the Johannine Community from being a group within Judaism, to expulsion, expansion, and to surviving internal schism over the first and into the second century. This church (one of many Christian churches in those earliest days) had a unique Christology, namely that God was made flesh in Jesus. Following from that is the belief that the Spirit (Jesus, God) is alive in the world, as it has always been. We know it more definitively from th ...more
Mar 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Excellent. Raymond Brown narrates a constructed history of the Johannine family of congregations. While the details of his story are by no means certain and, of course, subject to ongoing debate, the story he tells is easy to follow, powerfully told, and solidly grounded in exegesis of the Johannine literature.

My congregation is in the midst of a wide conflict in our denomination. Congregations are pitting themselves against other congregations, and many in my church want to join in on the actio
Laura Robinson
Jan 08, 2017 rated it liked it
I admit I have never been a great fan of the two-levels hypothesis to explain John (Duke heresy, I know). But the end discussion on 2nd century reception and how John came to us as an orthodox text is outstanding.
Apr 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Educational, comprehensive, insightful as always with Raymond E. Brown. Recommended for anyone interested in the New Testament, especially the background of the Gospel of John and the epistles I, II and III John.
Sep 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
this is not strictly a review of the book (which is most excellent) but some thoughts prompted by my reading of it:

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Roman Catholic priest, member of Society of Saint-Sulpice and a prominent biblical scholar, esteemed by not only his colleagues of the same confession. One of the first Roman Catholic scholars to apply historical-critical analysis to the Bible.
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