I think I have finally worked something out for my paper on Logos.
The assignment question reads as follows: Discuss the background and meaning of Logos in the prologue of the Gospel of John and discuss how the Logos contributes to John’s Christology.
Since November last year, I have been digging up whatever I can find on the background and meaning of Logos, i.e. from the Jewish roots (the OT, the Targumim of the Rabbinic Literature, Qumran Literature, etc.), Hellenistic influence (Heraclitus and the Stoics) and a mesh between the two of Philo. From these I’d then work out how each would probably have contributed to John’s Christology.
But I was not contented with this approach, which is why I have been turning it inside out and outside in for the past 5 months, and it is getting to me.
This morning however, a little light sparked off somewhere in the confines of my brain – why hadn’t I thought of it earlier? Can I approach it from John being the writer within his time and society, world of thought and way of life? Can I work out from - how he understood the world to be, to whom he was writing to, and the way the audience understood their world - to how John would have brought across the good news of Christ from his world into theirs?
It may sound trivial but I can now sense a sigh of relief that I can be satisfied and get on with my writing ... (I have just spent the last freaking hours looking for my tax forms but the cats must have carried it away - as such I do not have the pin access number to do it via e-filing - and all this coming from a seriously last minute person. Tomorrow is the the last day to file in our tax returns.)
I look forward to just sit down and hope to complete the assignment by tomorrow. I only hope I have enough material already, though I have an inkling I may have to pad up on the historical data of John’s time.
All of this reminded me of what I once read in my personality profile – “you often read assignments carefully and then work your creativity into the given framework of the assignment. Thus, it may appear that you did not pay careful attention to the details of the assignment in your reinterpretation. It is best if you have teachers who appreciate your unique approach and who do not hold you to the letter of the law.”