Did John See Jesus After the Resurrection?

The question of whether John saw Jesus after the resurrection has been a subject of debate among scholars and theologians for many years. Some argue that John did indeed see Jesus after the resurrection, while others believe that he did not. In this article, we will explore both sides of the argument and examine the evidence presented.

Arguments for John seeing Jesus after the Resurrection

One of the main arguments in favor of John seeing Jesus after the resurrection comes from the book of John itself. In John 20:19-29, we see that Jesus appears to his disciples twice, once without Thomas and then again with Thomas present.

It is during this second appearance that Thomas finally believes that Jesus has risen from the dead. This passage suggests that John was present during both appearances, as he is included in the group of disciples.

Furthermore, in John 21:1-14, we see another account of Jesus appearing to his disciples, this time by the Sea of Galilee. Again, John is mentioned as being present during this encounter.

Finally, some argue that the manner in which John refers to himself throughout his gospel suggests that he was an eyewitness to these events. For example, in John 19:35, he writes “He who saw it has borne witness—his testimony is true.” This could be interpreted as a reference to himself as an eyewitness.

Arguments against John seeing Jesus after the Resurrection

On the other hand, there are those who argue that John did not actually see Jesus after the resurrection. One argument against this idea is based on a careful reading of John 20:19-29.

While it is true that John is included in both appearances described here, there is no explicit mention of him actually seeing or interacting with Jesus. It is possible that he was simply present but did not actually witness these events.

Another argument against John seeing Jesus after the resurrection is based on the fact that he does not mention himself by name in the gospel. While it is true that he refers to himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved,” some argue that this could be a deliberate attempt to remain anonymous and avoid drawing attention to himself.


In the end, the question of whether John saw Jesus after the resurrection remains an open one. While there is evidence both for and against this idea, it is ultimately up to each individual reader to decide for themselves what they believe.

Regardless of where one comes down on this question, however, it is clear that John played a key role in spreading the message of Jesus’ resurrection. His gospel has been a source of inspiration and guidance for countless believers throughout history, and continues to be studied and cherished today.