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By Wayne A. Meeks

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The one intended by Dt. 14) was at least not universal (cf. "4 Even among those who have recognized that "the Prophet" has a specific significance in the Fourth Gospel, opinion has diverged as to what precisely that significance is. A number of scholars have sought to explain the figure, at least in so far as he is identified with Jesus, solely from Hellenistic comparisons. A larger number have regarded the Prophet as explicable on the basis of Old Testament and Jewish ideas alone. In his monograph on "the Son of God," Wetter argues for a purely Hellenistic background for the term "prophet" in John.

A. Ernstons, 1953], pp. 135-148, especially p. 141. 4 Kritisch exegetisches Handbuch über das Evangelium des Johannes (5th rev. ; K E K ; 1869), p. 101. 2 3 ΙΟ INTRODUCTION in Philostratus ‫ י‬portrait, Philo's Moses, and the Hermetic prophet. The Fourth Gospel, he thinks, is much closer to the former, more popular kind of piety, and "the Prophet" which appears in John "as a synonym for ‫׳‬Son of God' " x is equivalent to the theios anthropos of popular Hellenistic piety. The interpretation of Walter Bauer, in his commentary on John, moves in a similar direction.

370. ΙΟ INTRODUCTION "As was the first Redeemer [Moses], so will be the last Redeemer," to the Davidic Messiah can also be explained as a secondary merging of these two traditions. On the other hand, such an explanation is impossible for the Samaritan Taheb, since it is unthinkable that the Samaritans would have constructed their redeemer figure from a combination of the Davidic Messiah with a purely prophetic personage. It is far more likely that they would have found both royal and prophetic features already present in the Moses tradition, stemming perhaps from very early times.

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