By Allen White
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.
Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.
He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:1-18 (NIV)
Writing at the close of the first century, John had plenty of time to reflect on the circumstances and events involving his friend and Savior, Jesus. Sixty or so years had certainly given John perspective about what this baby in the manger meant to the world. While the earlier Gospel writers, Matthew and Luke, give us the accounts of Jesus’ birth, John starts with a highly theological introduction. (It makes you wonder why we encourage new believers to read the Gospel of John first. Seriously.)
John doesn’t refer to Jesus by name in this passage. He calls Jesus “The Word.” It’s interesting that John chooses this title for his friend. But, consider the power of God’s Word. Creation came into existence through the Word (Genesis 1:3ff). The Bible tells us that the evidence of God’s existence is clear through His creation (Romans 1:19-20). According to John and the rest of Scripture, the Word had a role in creation.
God proclaimed His Word through prophets. John the Baptist was the last of these. When His people refused to listen to His prophets, God sent His Son (Hebrews 1:1-4). The Word became flesh and lived among us. Sometimes it’s easier to learn by example than by lecture. In Jesus, the Word, we witness an “exact representation” of God (Hebrews 1:3).
If you want to know what God thinks, listen to Jesus. If you want to know how God acts, look at Jesus. If you want to see how God loves, look at Jesus on the cross. Then remember that Jesus lives in you.
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