Encountering Jesus in the New Testament (Third Edition)

Chapter 8: The Gospel of John. The Literary Art of the 7 Signs


Film Focus: This video examines the seven signs in the Gospel of John as an example of the literary concept of chiasm and walks the viewer through how this highlights the importance of the central story of the Feeding of the 5000.


Text Focus: Pages 402-405, 407-410


Discussion Questions:


1.   The Synoptic Gospels call that acts of Jesus “mighty deeds” while the Gospel of John calls them something else? What does the Gospel of John call Jesus’ actions and did it use this terminology?

2.   What is the literary concept of chiasm? Discuss how these seven stories form a literary chiasm.

3.   Why is the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand placed at the center of the chiasm? How is what happens here especially important to Catholic Theology?

4.   How is the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand shown as an undoing of Original Sin?

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