Bible Society of South Africa

More gospel truths – 21 December 2020

By Hennie Symington

Bible text(s)

The Word of Life

1In the beginning the Word already existed; the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

3Through him God made all things; not one thing in all creation was made without him.

John must have had the theology scholars of his day in a spin. And that from a (not so ordinary) fisherman! With one bold brush stroke, in the first paragraph of his book, he takes hold of both Greek and Jewish readers. Nothing in John’s description of Christ coming to earth can be compared with the synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark and Luke. Yet there could be no doubt in their minds that John was introducing Jesus as a divine being. He does so by calling Jesus the Word (Logos in Greek). The Greeks believed that the logos is the mysterious and eternal force that drives everything. The Jews on the other hand believed that God created the heavens and the earth and everything on it purely by speaking the word: And God said, “Let there be light” and there was light (Genesis 1:3). Then John spends the rest of the Gospel confirming this. Looking at John 1:1a the apostle confirms his view that Jesus was present with God from the beginning and “sharing the glory of God before creation” (John 17:5).

Amazing feat for a fisherman, is it not? And simple enough for even the simplest amongst us to understand. As you read, you cannot but be in awe of John who clothes profound truths in a language we can all understand. Or at least challenges us to deepen our understanding of Christ’s incarnation.

Prayer: Father, you created us and wired us to respond to you. Thank you for empowering John and the other gospel writers to bring the miracle of your birth and earthly existence to us in ways that we can understand. Amen

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