Although an abundance of literature is available regarding the glory of Christ in the Fourth Gospel, relatively little has been written on the glory of Christ’s followers in this Gospel. John 17.21-23 is frequently cited to promote various causes with the assumption that this text refers to church unity, but the theme of the glory that Christ has given to his people to enable their unity has scarcely been noted, and there are many diverse understandings of the nature of the oneness for which the Johannine Jesus prayed. What is the glory that Christ has given to believers? Diverse theories have been proposed, but no clear, convincing answers have been offered by contemporary interpreters. In this thesis, answers to the questions regarding the nature of the δόξα in 17.22-23 are found primarily in Chapter 17 and in the Farewell Discourse(s), but contributions are garnered from relevant passages in other sections of the Gospel as well. This is also true of the question regarding the nature of oneness in 17.22-23. The following questions are addressed: (1) Who are the people to whom Jesus has given δόξα in John 17.20-23? (2) What is the δόξα that Jesus has given to his followers? (3) What is meant by oneness of the believers in vv. 20-23? A survey of the lexicographical background of δόξα is focused on the use of δόξα in the LXX, since NT usage usually follows that of the LXX. The meaning of do,xa in the LXX, however, is partly dependent on its meaning in nonbiblical Greek and partly on the meanings of the Hebrew words that δόξα renders in the LXX. A consideration of the meanings of δόξα in the Greek OT is supplemented by an inquiry into the δόξα of the Messiah and of God's People in the LXX. Δόξα in the Apocrypha, glory in the OT Pseudepigrapha, and memra, yeqara, and shekinah in the Targums are discussed in the sections that follow, since the intertestamental writings form an important bridge between the OT and the NT. The survey of the lexicographical background of δόξα concludes with a discussion of the meanings of δόξα in the NT. Proceeding with the supposition that answers to the questions regarding the nature of the gift of δόξα and of oneness in 17.22-23 are found primarily in Chapter 17 and in the Farewell Discourse(s), the study of Chapter 17 begins first in 17.22-23 and its paragraph (vv. 20-23), and radiates out from there into the rest of Chapter 17 and the Farewell Discourse(s). Relevant passages in other sections of the Fourth Gospel are examined as well. This study does not attempt to discuss every text in the Fourth Gospel that speaks of δόξα or δόξαζω, but those that are most closely associated with the passage under consideration are studied and discussed.
Thesis (PhD (New Testament Studies))--University of Pretoria, 2008.