Know Who You Are Following
Bible Passage: John 1, John 2:30-31, Colossians 1:16, John 12:36
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light. The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.’”) For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.
- Jesus invites us to follow Him anywhere he leads. Our choice of a leader for our spiritual life will be the most important choice we ever make. Only one leader offers a path to eternal life. All others end in an eternal place of darkness and misery. The prologue of John’s accounting of the gospel provides a description of Jesus, who tells us to follow him, against which all other leaders may be compared.
- John is a Gospel written for a specific purpose: that we might believe. A key verse for understanding the Gospel of John is found at the end of the book: But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name ().
- John recalls from Genesis, the book of Moses, that Jesus, also known as The Word, was there at creation. All things created were created by and through Him because He was with God and is God.
- “Faith is described as ‘receiving’ Jesus. It is the empty cup placed under the flowing stream; the penniless hand held out for heavenly alms.” (Spurgeon)
- Jewish rabbis often referred to God (especially in His more personal aspects) in terms of His word. They spoke of God Himself as “the word of God.” For example, ancient Hebrew editions of the Old Testament change (Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God) to “Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet the word of God.” In the mind of the ancient Jews, the phrase “the word of God” could be used to refer to God Himself.
- God sent a forerunner, John the Baptist, to prepare the people for the arrival of Jesus. When Jesus arrives they don’t recognize or accept him.
One Couldn’t Help But Ask…
- In verses 1 and 2 is says “…the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.” How could the Word be with God and the Word be God at the same time? Who is “He” who was with God? If this is Jesus being talked about, why didn’t John just refer to Jesus by name?
- In verse 4 it says “In him was life, and the life was the light of men.” What does the bible mean when it says “…the life was the light of men.”?
- In verse 7 it says “He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him.” Can you describe the light to which John is bearing witness?
- In verse 12 is says “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,…” What does it mean to have the right to be called a child of God?
- In verse 13 it says “…who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” How can someone be born of God?
- In verse 16 it says “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.” What does “grace upon grace” mean in this context?