January 2 – Chronological Life of Jesus Day 2
As we start the book of John today…there’s some really good stuff in John, foundations of our faith good stuff! Please, please, please ask questions in the comments section below today’s post on our website if there’s anything you don’t understand. FYI, I’m no Bible scholar. I have a degree in physical science which is about the furthest you can get away from God in our educational system. Sometimes I don’t address things because I don’t understand them either, and maybe God knows I’m not ready to understand those parts yet. We’re all just regular people trying to grow in our relationship with God, and He gives us His Word in the Bible to do just that. So, open it up and see what He has to tell you today. And maybe we all can help each other when we have questions.
READ: John 1
John introduces Jesus here in the beginning of Chapter 1 but doesn’t say his name until verse 17. “The Word” to which he refers is Jesus, and He was in the beginning of creation (vs. 1) because Jesus is God. This is one of the most important foundations of our faith, and no other gospel emphasizes this as much as John. Check my archived post from December 25 for what Jesus as The Word means.
How else does John describe Jesus in Chapter 1? It seems to me that each of John’s descriptions of Jesus focuses more on his spiritual being than on his physical aspects. In vs. 1:14, Jesus is born, but it’s almost a little cryptic to understand this verse as such: “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” In other words, God became flesh and bone in Jesus so his presence could be with us here on earth. Remember from yesterday we talked about how Luke emphasizes Jesus as the Son of God? It’s difficult for us to grasp because we like things to fit into boxes, but God is bigger than a box—Jesus can be both God and man (i.e., God’s son) at the same time. Did you see what vs. 1:12-13 says? All you have to do is believe that Jesus is both God and man, and you have the right to become a child of God! And here’s how you exercise that right to become a child of God—believe that Jesus died for your sins and rose from the dead so that you can be with your Father God in heaven forever! That’s seriously all there is to it!
Each gospel contributes pertinent information to understanding God and our faith; that’s why God had the gospel authors write it this way. As we dig into the other gospels, compare and contrast how each introduces and describes Jesus.
We will go into more detail on John the Baptist’s story as it comes up next week chronologically in the other gospels. But today I want to go into a little more on the last part of John 1. John the Baptist has just seen the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove descend on Jesus, just as God told him it would happen, and this would be the Son of God. The very next day, John the Baptist announces Jesus as the Lamb of God (foreshadowing Jesus as the sacrificial lamb for our sins when he is put to death on the cross), and immediately two men follow Jesus—the first of his twelve disciples. Verse 1:39 says the two spent the day with Jesus, but the very first thing Andrew does next is to find his brother Peter and tell him that they have found the Messiah (vs. 1:40-42). That Peter? Yes, that Peter–the one who became the founding father for the Christian church. During that day Andrew spent with Jesus, do you think he discovered the One Thing? YES! In the course of one day, he went from first believing in Jesus, to growing in Jesus, and then to telling others the good news. Did it happen that quickly for you? Not for me! I thought I had to know more Bible to be able to tell others about Jesus. God reveals knowledge to us when we are ready in our walk with Him to act on it. For me, that revelation took about 12 years. I’m not proud of that; I wish I would have been more quick to share the good news, more like Andrew, but I know that knowing this 12 years ago wouldn’t have made me any more of an evangelist. He had to grow me in other places first.
All I have to do is believe. You have done the rest for me because You love me.
Thank You that I am Your child! And thank You for growing me since that moment I first believed 13 years ago! Continually remind me that all I have to do is believe and continue to help me point others in that way to You.