On the kingdom matter, from what I have learned, it was very much a Jewish thing in post-exilic Israel...wanting a self-sovereign political state again
. The chances that Yeshua's activity had been focusing on a kingdom of that nature, teaching that it would be due to direct intervention by YHWH against, especially those of the class who had (possibly in his and his group's eyes) strayed from the 'pureness' of the law. So yes, a political state, co-ruled by a certain number of who would become 'carried away,' to help the son and the father (YHWH and Yeshua) rule over that earthly kingdom.
John's gospel has a number of hands in it. John the elder, a different John (as reported on by Papias) likely had created the Revelation text, and may have had some influence on the John text too--with this mysticism which other quotes in the Church fathers give him
. The likelihood that all the gospel accounts which we have in our canon, were finished by the early second century CE.
Yes, that is very much the understanding, based on the best evidence, Deckard. The really only reason we can verify, for our having just these narratives today, is simply the frequency with which they had been read, and left them to get stuck in the flock's minds...there was an issue once, about a mistake in the reading, where the audience complained to a higher person (they had put it to memory so well, at that point). But we do have the general Western tradition, and the Alexandrian tradition, with some cross-over, and other side traditions out there then, too...and some of it got lost along the way, unfortunately.
I don't think that I had worded that section, jeeprs, with strength, actually, but perhaps with definiteness. There were a number of Jewish cliches which had been used in object lesson parables. It would actually be a bit hard to pin some kind of deeper intent to communicate something on them. Again, we cannot say for certain whether these object lessons are from occurrences during Yeshua's activities and teaching, or whether they are penned in object lessons. There is at least one time (speaking off the top of my head here, but will check tomorrow) where application of older scripture is provided so as to show it as a fulfilling of prophecy...but the result is dubious.
It's easy to read too much into the texts, simply because we are so far removed from the moment and all it included...and because the most fundamental prophecies were false. (please see from around this post, for further information on one element of that
) And, while it can be done, of course, doing so will have no foundation . . . it would be very much like simply putting words in the author's mouth; when it all boiled down.