John 1:1-5 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.
What a great opening this is for John’s Gospel. This faithful disciple of Jesus wants us to understand, at the outset, the fundamental framework, or ‘worldview’, on which his account of Jesus’ life will be based.
And how helpful this is as we read through the Gospel:
Firstly, Jesus IS God, and has ALWAYS BEEN God. He was WITH God IN THE BEGINNING. This obvious reference to the first verse of Genesis makes it clear that Jesus, the man whom John came to know and love when he “became flesh and made his dwelling [literally, ‘pitched his tent’] among us”, and whose “glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” he actually SAW with his own eyes (verse 14), is none other than the Second Person of the Trinity, included in the ‘US’ of “Let US make man in OUR image” (Genesis 1:26)!
Secondly, HE is the REASON Creation exists and EVERYTHING in Scripture points to HIM.
Thirdly, HE is the ONLY source of true (eternal) life. Ever since SIN led to Adam and Eve being cast out of the Garden, ie DYING spiritually (Genesis 3:24), every human being has been born into the world SEPARATED FROM God. It needed Jesus to come into the world, to bear the punishment for sin on the cross, and to restore LIFE to us.
Fourthly, it is part of the ‘darkness’ of our ‘fallen’ nature that we, of ourselves, are UNABLE to ‘understand’, and therefore benefit from, this LIFE/LIGHT provision. Rather, God himself will need to take the initiative in restoring life to our ‘dead’ hearts: “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” (12-13).
Who would NOT want to read through this Gospel with the praise of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, on their lips and in their hearts?!