The evangelist betrays a vast knowledge of Judaism, its feasts, its Scriptures

76. About the Jews, the Fourth Gospel has a very positive statement, made by Jesus himself in the dialogue with the Samaritan woman: “Salvation comes from the Jews” (Jn 4:22). 325 Elsewhere, to the statement of the High Priest Caiaphas who said that it was “advantageous” “to have one man die for the people”, the evangelist sees a meaning in the word inspired by God and emphasises that “Jesus was about to die for the nation”, adding “not for the nation only, but to gather into one the dispersed children of God” (Jn -52). The value of the Jewish patrimony is clearly acknowledged: Abraham saw Jesus’ day and was glad (8:56); the Law is a gift given through Moses as intermediary (1:17); “the Scripture cannot be annulled” (); Jesus is the one “about whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote” (1:45); he is “a Jew” (4:9) and “King of Israel” (1:49) or “King of the Jews” (-22).

The word “Jews” is found 71 times in the Fourth Gospel, usually in the plural, three times in the singular (3:25; 4:9; ). It is applied especially to “Jesus” (4:9). The name “Israelite” only appears once; it is a title of honour (1:47). A certain number of Jews are well disposed to Jesus. One such is Nicodemus, a “leader of the Jews” (3:1) who saw Jesus as a teacher come from God (3:2), defends him before his Pharisee colleagues (7:50-51) and, after his death on the cross, takes charge of his burial (). At the end, “many of the leaders” believed in Jesus, but lacked courage to declare themselves as his disciples (). The evangelist frequently reports that “many” people came to believe in Jesus. 326 The context shows that it is the Jews, except in 4:39,41; the evangelist is sometimes precise, though rarely sufficiently so (8:31; ; ).

There is no serious reason to doubt that the evangelist was Jewish and that the basic context for the composition of the Gospel was relations with the Jews

Their opposition begins with the curing of the paralytic on the sabbath day (5:16).