The distinguishing of history and interpretation, difficult in all the gospels, is perhaps most difficult in the Fourth Gospel. In his sequel to "The Interpretation of the Fourth Gospel" Dr Dodd studies it again with the historical question in mind, to discover the particular strain of common tradition on which the unknown author worked.
This detailed study of St John's Gospel is in two parts. In the first Dr Dodd examines the narrative material--the Passion Narrative, the Ministry and the chapters on John the Baptist and the First Disciples; in the second he makes a detailed examination of the Sayings. As against theories which assert the dependence of the Fourth Gospel on one or more of the Synoptic Gospels, Dr Dodd marshals a mass of evidence to show rather that behind it there lies an ancient tradition independent of the Synoptic gospels, deserving serious consideration as a contribution to our knowledge of the historical facts concerning Christ.
This critical and historical investigation of the most significant and original of books completes the study of the Fourth Gospel which Dr Dodd began with "The Interpretation of the Fourth Gospel." It is persuasive in the coherence of its results, as well as of absorbing interest in its working. It has been welcomed by all students of Christian origins as an important addition to our understanding of the earliest traditions about Jesus, and of the character of this Gospel.