Wednesday, November 18, 2020

The Gospel of John 1:1-18

John 1:1–2
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. (NIV84)

God is love and all goodness. The person that longs for love and goodness may seek it within but then discover only emptiness. That person is seeking God even though they may not know it, but God actively seeks such people and reveals his nature to them first through personal revelation and then through the Holy Scriptures. When a seeking person reads, the Holy Word of God God actively reveals himself inside that person, that is to the soul within. The amount of revelation that a person receives is the exact same as the person’s true desire to know the loving and good God. What I mean to say is that you must change your desires before you can become like God. Unless you seek to become like God, you will never know God. That is the God that is revealed to us in the person of Jesus Christ and for us today that Jesus is revealed in the revelation of God that is the Holy Bible. God’s perfection is revealed to us through the Holy Scriptures. God’s true and personal person is revealed to anyone that receives him through their reading of the Bible. God’s power and majesty may be revealed through an examination of the heavens, but his love and goodness only through Jesus Christ, that is through the Word. If God did not reveal himself to us, we would have no way of knowing him. This is the meaning of [John 1:1].

The revelation of God was accomplished through the creation of the heavens and the earth, that is through the creation of creation; the universe. This event marked the beginning of time; thus, the creation was created at the beginning, for before the creation, there was no time. Time began at the moment of creation and will continue until the creation is removed. (Biblically speaking this will occur on the Eighth Day.) The purpose of the creation was to reveal God, and so the revelation of God is seen through the creation, that is the Word who is the revelation is revealed. This might seem to be going around and around, but it only seems that way. Jesus Christ is the revelation of God, and the creation was to reveal God and so the revelation and Jesus Christ are two aspects of the same revelation. Jesus Christ is the accumulation of the revelation or the embodiment of the revelation or the perfection of the revelation. If you were to condense the whole of the revelation revealed in creation into a single embodiment, that embodiment would be Jesus Christ. The essence of the whole of creation is seen in the person of Jesus Christ. The creation has no purpose other than to reveal God to us in ways that we can understand. The whole scientific community has missed the point of the creation. They focus on the trees and cannot see the forest as the common proverb says. What I am saying is that if you see Jesus Christ, you see God, and that is the purpose of creation.

-∞-

John 1:3–5
Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. (NIV84)

John is again saying that the purpose of the creation was to reveal God and that the embodiment of the creation is found in Jesus Christ, but then John goes on to say that the answer of creation is spiritual union with God and that union is only realized through God’s Son, Jesus Christ. How could it be otherwise? Jesus is the will of God made visible and so how could union with God be possible apart from God’s will? God’s will in this matter shines throughout all the heavens proclaiming his desire for eternal union with all his people; angels and man alike. Before the creation, the nature of eternal life was not known, thus the darkness, but through the revelation, the nature of eternal life, life in God, was revealed. Those that do not desire love and all goodness cannot see the revelation for what it is, they remain in ignorance; darkness.

In the life of Jesus Christ, we see the true nature of the living God revealed. Through Jesus Christ, God’s nature has been revealed to all men. Jesus is so much more than just another prophet revealed. Every moment of his life is a shining revelation of God, and the whole of his life, death, and resurrection is the will of God made visible; union with the loving and all-good God.

-∞-

John 1:6–9
There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. 9 The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world. (NIV84)

Jesus told us that John was the greatest of all the prophets [Matthew 11:7–15], and the reason that this was true is that John knew the Spirit of God better than any previous man.

John 10:40–42
Then Jesus went back across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing in the early days. Here he stayed 41 and many people came to him. They said, “Though John never performed a miraculous sign, all that John said about this man was true.” 42 And in that place many believed in Jesus. (emphasis mine-NIV84)

I am not talking about your ability to quote Scripture, but rather the intimate personal knowledge of Jesus Christ in your heart. This knowledge doesn’t come because you have been taught, but rather because of your sincere and earnest seeking of the Lord and God giving you to knowledge.

Looking back at [John 1:6-9], we see that John made himself a servant of a man that he had not even met. Essentially, John gave up his personal life so that he was available to God to prepare the people of Israel so that the people could recognize Jesus Christ when he came. That is your job today and mind too.

In [John 1:7], we see a very interesting statement. “He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe.” Mostly, God does not speak directly to an unbeliever; he speaks to those that know him. God revealed himself to John, and John revealed him to you and me. I have often heard complaints that God does not speak directly to the people, but this is actually how inspirational knowledge comes to us. Sir Isaac Newton said to us, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” The way understanding comes is by first understanding where you are and then proceeding to where you do not know. You understand where you are because someone at some point told you, then you can explore out into uncharted territories. You must have a basic intuitive understanding first. By that, I mean that you must know the basics of God before God can reveal more. How else would you know that what you received is true? If you want to see God, you must first stand on the shoulders of those that knew him before you, that is, the writers of the Bible.

John 3:31–36
“The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all. 32 He testifies to what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony. 33 The man who has accepted it has certified that God is truthful. 34 For the one whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God gives the Spirit without limit. 35 The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands. 36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.” (NIV84)

This is the reason that while I am writing about John chapter one, I must include other verses. To understand one thing, you must first understand another. This is the way all knowledge comes to us. If you wanted to become a world-class mathematician, you must first know arithmetic, algebra, trigonometry, and calculus, and I don’t mean to know the formulas, but rather to intimately understand how numbers work, how they relate to each other. You must know the concepts.

John was the guy that knew the concepts of God, and then God was able to raise him up to greater heights so that he could guide those that came after him.

[John 1:9] tells us, “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.” Jesus the Word is the light that gives light to every man. He was prophesied to come, and he came, and John testified to us this fact. The major point here is that Jesus is the perfect image of the invisible God. We can see God by looking carefully at Jesus. That is the point of Jesus being the Christ. Jesus is the one that had the Spirit of God without limit. He was not just a great man; he was the Son of Man. And John tells us this too.

-∞-

John 1:10–13
He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. (NIV84)

Many well-intentioned people stumble over the divinity of Jesus Christ. They point out that Jesus himself seemed to differentiate between himself and God the Father, and yet we see here that Jesus Christ is the Creator—a job that the Bible clearly says that God did. Do you know that it is impossible to know who Jesus Christ is fully? He is both God and man—an impossibility.

Luke 10:22
“All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” (emphasis mine-NIV84)

Jesus is not the Father, but he is the perfect image of him. He is not just a very good stand-in, but he is the perfect stand-in if you want to look at this in theatrical terms. The way I look at this in my mind and heart is that if God were to come to the earth as a human being, then Jesus Christ would be that man. It boggles the mind but is none the less true. Isaiah prophesied the coming Christ…

Isaiah 9:6
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (NIV84)

This passage pretty much says it all for me. Jesus Christ, the child born to us, will be called Mighty God and Everlasting Father. How much clearer can it be? Paul, in Colossians, says that Jesus is the image of the invisible God [Colossians 1:15]. So, we must accept that Jesus is not just a great man, but he is actually God’s exact lookalike stand-in, and it is more than just a lookalike, he is exactly like.

So, we see that the Creator created a world and then came to live in it, but the world that he created did not recognize him. The world had drifted so far away from its maker that it couldn’t even recognize him. This statement is so true today. The world today vilifies almost every point that God says is true. The world today so hates its creator that they are almost frothing at the mouth when Jesus Christ is mentioned.

In [John 1:12-13] we see that not everyone is a child of God, but only those that recognize Jesus Christ as being the image of God, and those that do recognize this God receives as his family. I ask you, what is there about Jesus that is not loveable? When you think incorrect thoughts, he tells you the truth. God is love [1 John 4:16], and so Jesus Christ is the actual expression of divine love in human form. Jesus is the perfect example of what sort of person you should be. If you are selfish, self-centered and unloving, then how does that make you right? The creator of the universe in which you live is selfless and in every way good, and he tells you to be like him.

John 3:19–21
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.” (NIV84)

Eternity operates in love. God is warning you that if you want to live in eternity, you must stop thinking only of yourself and become a child of love.

-∞-

John 1:14
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. (NIV84)

A way of understanding this statement is to say that the expression of God became a person so that we could see him. This is not to say that all of God has been revealed. The “Word” is that part of God that God revealed of himself is embodied in Jesus Christ. God is more than he expressed of himself. And the Bible is even less than that (see [John 21:25]). The Bible is the Word, but the Word is more than the Bible. As I said before, the Bible is that which you stand on to see further into the true nature of God. You must go beyond the Bible, but whatever you ‘see’ must never contradict the Bible. What you see that is beyond the Bible is that which God reveals directly to you, but God does not contradict himself, so anything that you think that has come to you from God must be checked against the Bible.

I have heard many times people say that Jesus is nice and forgiving and such, but that the God of the Old Testament is hard and judgmental. This is not true. They are the same God—exact same. Jesus revealed what he revealed because it was the time for that aspect of God to be revealed. Mostly the words of Jesus are for the obedient, and many of the words of the Old Testament were directed towards those who did not really submit to God.

God’s glory is his goodness, and we saw in Jesus Christ, God’s perfect goodness.

John 1:15–18
John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ ” 16 From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known. (NIV84)

This reveals to us John the Baptist’s primary purpose, and that is to reveal to us the Christ. This passage also reveals to us why John the Baptist was the greatest of the Old Testament prophets. Right here, at the beginning of the Gospel of John, John the Baptist tells us that Jesus the Christ is God the One and Only, for who else was at the Father’s side?

We cannot see God, but through the Bible, the Word of God, we can see him in his Christ. You can easily see that God, the Father, and Jesus Christ cannot be separated from one and other.

Jesus Christ is the one that brings God’s personal nature to us so that we can know the invisible God. You cannot love what you do not know. I see in Jesus Christ the embodiment of true love.

Mark Heaneyhttp://SeekersTrove.com
This is my greatest desire: That the eyes of my heart may be enlightened in order that I may know the hope to which he has called me, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. Ephesians 1:18–19

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