Much modern social theory and practice has affected biblical studies by showing that a great deal of light is thrown on the NT by investigating the communities out of which the NT writings emerged. Hence the appearance of books on, for example, the Johannine Circle or Community. Studies of 1st‐cent. institutions such as slavery and marriage explain aspects of community life in the Church and how Christians either reflected or repudiated standards and values in their environments. The gospel of Matthew, for example, expounds a way of life for its community which distances it from contemporary Judaism (Matt. 18) while also recognizing how much it still has in common with Jewish communities of the synagogues. By the time the fourth gospel was written, towards the end of the century, Church and Synagogue are farther apart and by a process of putting a prophecy into the mouth of Jesus (John 16: 2) the author, the evangelist, accepts the inevitability of the separation of the two communities: the Church, not the Jews, is now the faithful people of God.