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Document Details :
Title: The Absence of Exorcisms in the Fourth Gospel
Author(s): PLUMER, Eric
Volume: 78 Issue: 3 Date: 1997
In the profound theological synthesis by which the Fourth Gospel came into being, the traditions concerning Jesus' exorcisms were gradually pushed to the periphery as inadequate vehicles of Johannine κήρυγμα, διδαχή, and προσκύνησις. This process was hastened to its completion by the conflict between Johannine Christianity and Pharisaic Judaism. For our purposes, this conflict was decisive; for without it we cannot explain the omission of the most obvious sign of the casting out of the prince of this world. Nevertheless, the omission of exorcisms from the Fourth Gospel was not an illegitimate departure from the primitive tradition, attributable entirely to the particular historical circumstances of the Johannine community. It was, rather, a development of that tradition, enhancing what was already present in the teaching of Jesus, and clarifying his own interpretation of his work, as paradigmatic of God's definitive defeat of Satan.