History of Redemption: Blog Post 23
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth - John 1:1-4; 14 NASB.
Who is Jesus? I posed this questions two weeks ago. How do we answer that question in light of this week's scripture? John 1 is massively important for our understanding of who Jesus is. My fear is that for those of you who grew up in the church, these words have grown so familiar that they have become stale. I pray that today you will look upon them with fresh eyes. I pray that today you see with clarity His role in creation, His eternity, His deity, His revelation of God the Father, and His glory, full of grace and truth. Have you seen His glory?
Why does John refer to Jesus as "the Word"? I am sure you could spend a lifetime answering this question. However, the short answer is found in the context in which John was writing. John was writing to introduce his audience to the gospel of Jesus, and his audience was Jewish and Greek. The “Word” (“Logos”, in Greek), was intimately familiar to both groups. In the Old Testament, the Word is often the personification of God's will executed on earth (see Psalm 33:6, 107:20, 119:89). It was for Jewish readers, the personification of God's revelation to His people. In the Greek worldview, the Word was seen as the intermediate connection between the transcendent God and the material universe. Now we arrive at the crux of human history, and John reveals for us God’s plan for redemption. The Word is Jesus Christ! Jesus is the personification of God in flesh, fully God and fully human, come to reveal God's glory, and His plan for redemption. And "THE WORD WAS GOD"! We have seen His glory.
My wife spent months meeting weekly with a team of Jehovah's Witnesses. She invested countless hours, trying to convince them of the truth of scripture. For those who don't know, JWs deny the deity of Jesus. As you can imagine, this verse from John’s gospel, is one that they have been forced to re-interpret, to justify their faith. It broke my wife's heart, and mine, to get to know these people, who are still living in darkness because of false doctrine. And it reminded us of the importance of humbling ourselves beneath scripture, that we may obtain a true knowledge of God, and that we may live as He created us to live. Pray that those walking in darkness would see His glory.
I often think about the deity of Jesus Christ. I often think about His earthly life, and His heavenly reign. But I confess that I often neglect to consider His role in creation and that "All things came into being through Him". When I think about the creation of the world, I confess that I often neglect to give praise to Jesus, through Whom God created the earth and all that fills it. Jesus has existed for eternity with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, and He will continue to exist forever. He is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end (Revelation 1:8). He is from everlasting to everlasting (Nehemiah 9:5). I need to think often of the eternity of Jesus Christ. I need to see His glory.
Lord Jesus Christ, You are the Word of God. Today let us bend our knees and humble ourselves beneath the weight of Your glory.
For those interested a more detailed discussion of the defense of the deity of Christ against the errant belief held by Jehovah's Witnesses, I encourage you to read the following link:
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it (Isaiah 55:10-11).