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Jesus - the Word of God

John 1:1-2

John's Gospel is all about Jesus.  The book explains the good news about who Jesus is and what He came to do.  It provides enough information for people to believe in Him to receive eternal life (John 20:30-31). The name 'Jesus' was only given to Him when He was born as a human being.  Matthew 1:21 says, "... you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins."

Jesus - Creator, Life and Light of the World

John 1:3-5

Before Jesus was born, He created the world and everything in it (Colossians 1:15-17).  He was not an observer of creation but its Chief Executive!  Indeed, there was no part of creation which was not personally brought into being by Him.  Time only started when He made the physical universe, and He is still its Master.  Where did all the energy come from?  It came from the 'Word' who was God.  He was also the source of all light and life.

Witness to the Light

John 1:6-9

John the Baptist (not to be confused with John, the writer of this Gospel) was the last of the Old Testament prophets.  He was specially appointed by God to announce Jesus as the 'Light of the world' (John 8:12).  Although he drew great crowds, John stressed he was not the Light that people should follow.  His role, after 400 years of divine silence since Malachi wrote his prophecy, was to command people to repent of their sin and get ready for God's arrival.  John the Baptist was like the prophet Elijah (Malachi 4:5-6) - the purpose of prophecy is always to draw people back to God's covena

Unknown and Unwanted

John 1:10-11

It is always a tragedy when people remember a famous product brand but forget its inventor; or when a painting is prized although the character of its artist is unknown.  That is how it was for Jesus.  The whole world was created under His authority and by His power (John 1:3), but when He arrived in person He was not recognised as its architect and builder.  Although He was born into a Jewish community that considered they were God's special people, they did not accept that He was God and eventually conspired to crucify Him (Mark 14:1).

Believing and Receiving

John 1:12-13

This verse continues from the previous one which said: “He [Jesus] came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.” (John 1:11).  But there were some who did receive Him – they are identified as those who ‘believed in His Name’.  What does that mean?  To ‘believe in His name’ means ‘to trust Him as a person knowing the integrity of His character and the authority of His commission’.  Some people did that.

God in a Human Body

John 1:14

John the Apostle had spent the best part of three years with Jesus and, in many ways, was the closest to Him of all the disciples.  This verse is John's summary of Jesus (inspired by the Holy Spirit).  Jesus was the Word of God, the Creator who was made visible in a human body (Hebrews 1:1-3).  He was God who spoke through a human mouth; and yet by His teaching, signs and wonders showed He was no ordinary man.  Jesus was not just a good man who pointed to God, but God Himself.

Who Comes First?

John 1:15

In this verse, John the Apostle is speaking about another John, John the Baptist, who was Jesus' cousin and about six months older than Him (Luke 1:26-28).  In Jesus' day, as in many cultures now, older people were honoured more than those who were younger.  So, the 'elders' in the community were the older men, who were recognised as having wisdom; and a younger brother would be expected to serve his older brother.  That sense of deference was expected throughout the extended family and the community.  However, when Jesus came to where John was baptising, John said that the younger man (Jes

Jesus Brings the Best from God

John 1:16-17

It is very important for citizens to know the laws of their country - but there are no prizes for keeping the law.  The law only functions when we break it – and then its role is to identify our failure and the punishment which we deserve.  The same is true with God’s law.  Of course, if we keep His Word then we stay in relationship with Him and can enjoy His blessings.  

The Invisible God Made Visible

John 1:18

Father God does not have a body.  As Jesus said, “God is spirit, and his worshippers must worship in the Spirit and in truth." (John 4:24)  And yet God has revealed Himself throughout history as His prophets spoke out His message, urging people to return to obey the covenant in God’s Law.  But at no time did anyone see God; even Moses, who specifically asked to see Him (Exodus 33:18-23).  However, Jesus Christ has been seen and John’s Gospel is one of four documentary accounts of His life on earth.  He was God’s final and complete revelation of Himself to human beings as Hebrews 1:

Confessing that Jesus is Lord

John 1:19-23

John the Baptist attracted much attention.  Even though he was preaching in a remote part of Israel, many Jewish people knew about him and travelled to hear him.  His teaching cut through to their hearts and they started to repent of their sins and be baptised in large numbers; the religious establishment were worried: ‘Who is he?’, they wondered, ‘and why is he doing this?  So, they sent a delegation of religious lawyers from Jerusalem to the Jordan River to interrogate him.