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19. USED WITHOUT RECOGNITION IN THE YEARS 140-170.

Most noteworthy are the writers between the specified years 140 and 170, who really cite passages from the Fourth Gospel, but do not say who composed it. The most important is Justin, who wrote about 152 and was subsequently martyred. From the Synoptics he introduces over one hundred passages, but from Jn. only three, and these are so far from following Jn.’s language exactly that in every case it can be thought that he took them from another book, and that the Fourth Evangelist may have done the same. We assume, however, that Justin took them from Jn.’s work. But why, then, are there so few, and why is nothing said about this work being the composition of a personal disciple of Jesus? Referring to the “Revelation” of Jn., he says positively that it was composed by the Apostle; but he says nothing about the Gospel. And yet he attaches so much importance to the “memorials of the Apostles and their companions,” as he calls the Gospels; and shares with the Fourth the doctrine of the Logos. We can only understand this on one supposition: Justin did not consider the Fourth Gospel to be the work of the Apostle. In that case, it must in his age still have been quite new; otherwise it would long ago have won general recognition. Obviously Justin finds in it some passages which are beautiful and worth mentioning, but, compared with the rich use made of the Synoptics, he uses it with great caution, and almost with hesitation.

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