Post image for 6 Feb 2009: John 1:14-18

6 Feb 2009: John 1:14-18

by Stephen Hebert on Friday - 6 February 2009

in Biblical Studies, New Testament

God has revealed himself to us in so many ways. The most meaningful and most important revelation, however, was Jesus Christ himself. In John 1:14, we are told that “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” The Almighty humbled himself and planted his feet firmly on the Earth.

Hebert Translation Nestle-Aland 27
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw its glory, glory as the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. John testifies concerning him, and he has cried out saying: “This is the one of whom I said: ‘He who comes after me is in front of me because he was before me.'” Because out of his fullness we all received grace upon grace. For the Law was given through Moses, grace and truth came about through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God — the only God — who, being in the breast of the Father, he has made known. Καὶ ὁ λόγος σὰρξ ἐγένετο καὶ ἐσκήνωσεν ἐν ἡμῖν, καὶ ἐθεασάμεθα τὴν δόξαν αὐτοῦ, δόξαν ὡς μονογενοῦς παρὰ πατρός, πλήρης χάριτος καὶ ἀληθείας. Ἰωάννης μαρτυρεῖ περὶ αὐτοῦ καὶ κέκραγεν λέγων· οὗτος ἦν. ὃν εἶπον· ὁ ὀπίσω μου ἐρχόμενος ἔμπροσθέν μου γέγονεν, ὅτι πρῶτός μου ἦν ὅτι ἐκ τοῦ πληρώματος αὐτοῦ ἡμεῖς πάντες ἐλάβομεν καὶ χάριν ἀντὶ χάριτος· ὅτι ὁ νόμος διὰ Μωϋσέως ἐδόθη, ἡ χάρις καὶ ἡ ἀλήθεια διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἐγένετο. Θεὸν οὐδεὶς ἑώρακεν πώποτε· μονογενὴς θεὸς ὁ ὢν εἰς τὸν κόλπον τοῦ πατρὸς ἐκεῖνος ἐξηγήσατο.

No one has ever seen God…

The Word became flesh. Jesus Christ, who was God, put on a fleshy body; he became a man so that we all might come to see the Father. The master revealed himself to the servants by means of his only begotten servant, Christ Jesus.

This is a powerful section of John, this prologue, that we are now drawing to a close. John has re-oriented the entire creation (κόσμος) around Jesus in a way that had not been done before. Jesus, as the divine word (λόγος) was present at the beginning. Not only this, but he was also the agent through which the beginning took place. He is the source of the creation. In order for God to reveal himself fully to humans, he chose to have this divine word put on a body.

A beautiful symmetry exists in this story. If we take this with the opening chapters of Genesis, we see God create humans by producing Adam and then Eve. Later down the line, God re-produces, re-generates, humans by injecting himself into their form. In him, we are reborn. We are likenesses of God, and he has become a likeness of us.

This is not to say, of course, that we have invented God in our image. No, I mean the opposite. God created us in his image and then took on that image in Jesus.

All of this has been done to the glory of God.

I’m never really sure what “glory” means. I know that as a Christian I am called to glorify God in all that I do. This is an area where I struggle. What must I do to glorify God? More to the point: How can anything that I do glorify God? What meaning could my worship possibly have?

Glory and grace — two difficult words.

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