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The Word Became Flesh

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Prayer
The central miracle asserted by Christians, is the incarnation. They say that God became man.
C.S. Lewis had it right when he made this quote.
Over the past several weeks, we’ve been seeing the truth of the incarnation...
…building up....culminating to the pinnacle of what we find in our text today.
We’ve seen phrases like this the past several weeks:
“The light shines in the darkness”
“The True light…was COMING into the world”
“He CAME to His own”
All of these phrases…pointing to the reality of what we see - starting in verse 14...
John 1:14–18 ESV
14 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. 15 (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.’ ”) 16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.
What I’d like to do today is to INITIALLY - focus in on the first 5 words of verse 14...
What are they?
John 1:14 ESV
14 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.
I don’t believe, that on this side of the grave, we will EVER truly grasp ALL that REALLY took place...
…in Jesus Christ, coming in the flesh.
BUT - we’re going to try...
If THIS phrase is the cake...
What I want to do today is to examine the ingredients OF this cake...
the ingredients that MAKE up this cake.
To do that - we’ll be bouncing all around Scripture, but to start, let’s go back to verse 1 from this book...
John 1:1 ESV
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
I hope we remember this verse...
It’s one that we looked extensively at just a few weeks ago...
And so if we think back to those 5 words from v14, (And the WORD became flesh)...
And we apply v1 here - TO v14...
we see, AND ARE REMINDED - that WHEN v14 tells us the WORD became flesh...
We hopefully understand....
SLIDE: In the Word Becoming Flesh: God Became Flesh

In the Word Becoming Flesh

Seems like a LOGICAL conclusion, but it’s where we must start.
Yes - Jesus Christ IS the Word...
And according to v1 - we see that the Word IS GOD...
And so basically just do the math - God Became Flesh...
He BECAME Flesh…and DWELT among us.
The word "dwelt" here...is the same word used in the Greek translation of the OT that refers to the Tabernacle.
It's the verb form of the noun (Tabernacle)
So basically it says - The Word Tabernacled among us...
Why is this significant?
When we think about the BIG-PICTURE story of the Bible, we see an interesting pattern concerning the - GLORY of God
Think back to creation...Genesis 1 and 2...And think about where the glory of God dwelled at that time:
The Glory of God Dwelled In: Eden
There was nothing at all that hindered the pure Worship of God in the Garden.
No coveteousness of man
No greed in man
No pride in man
Nothing
Pure Worship
But then - Sin shattered everything.
And since then - God is getting us back to what? -- the Worship of Him
Where does the Glory of God dwell at the end of Exodus?
It's not in the Garden anymore...it's...in the Tabernacle
At creation - His glory dwelled in the Garden of Eden
During the Exodus - The Glory of God Dwelled in: The Tabernacle
Where worship was uninhibited in Genesis 1 and 2...
Only ONE man, during and following the Exodus could enter the Tabernacle (the High Priest)...
And so with sin - came separation.
And so God now - putting His plan in place to REDEEM His people...
Sends - the TRUE LIGHT into the darkness...
AND NOW - In the Gospel - where does the Glory of God dwell?
The Glory of God now dwells in JESUS CHRIST!
Colossians 1:19 ESV
19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,
If we want to Experience the Glory of God...
Taste the glory of God..
If we want to see the glory of God...
We LOOK to Jesus!
Jesus as - THE WORD
Well - The WORD - became FLESH, and dwelt among us...
John 1:14 ESV
14 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.
So yes Jesus - The WORD - became flesh...
GOD became flesh!
But let’s dive in more…to see ANOTHER ingredient of - The Word Becoming Flesh...
Philippians 2:3–8 ESV
3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
SO when John 1:14 tells us that - The Word became flesh...
We also see…here from Philippians...
SLIDE: In the Word Becoming Flesh: Ultimate Humility Lead to Ultimate Mercy

In the Word Becoming Flesh

Philippians 2:8 ESV
8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
This past week, there were a couple times throughout the week where it really hit me hard...
…how our relationships with our kids are often DIRECT correlations with our relationship with God.
*I had just got home with Tia - we were out and about somewhere - and we pulled in the driveway…
…and parked the car.
Now a lot of times when I park the car, and go to get out of the car, Trey and Tia...
…what they’ll do is they’ll unbuckle their seat belts, and instead of opening their door and getting out...
they’ll climb into the front and get out my door.
Anyway - I got out of the car, and I knew Tia was gonna be following right behind me.
So I watched her climb into the front...
and she was holding something in one of her hands.
I reached out my hand, to steady her as she stepped out of the car (I didn’t want her to trip and crash onto the concrete.
And as I reached out my hand and waited for her to take my hand...
I WONDERED if she would take it.
BECAUSE - there are times when she refuses to...
And in that moment I thought - God - 10,000 times a day, You hold out Your hand for me...
SAYING - Ok Mike, let’s walk this way...
Let’s head in this direction...
Let’s make THIS decision...
…and there are times I refuse to take it…THINKING I know better.
BUT EVEN as a PARENT - there are MANY, MANY times when I know that what’s best for my kids...
is that DAD HUMBLE himself - and...
Be silly in the car...
Forgo DOING the adult thing - and instead get down to THEIR level...
..and ENTER their world.
To forgo being STOIC…and instead - be a KID with them...
Most times THAT’s what they NEED!
OF COURSE they need - Guidance...
But what they DON’T need is a parent who is no different than - a Parenting Book Written for Adults...
Meaning - If my relationship with my kids only consists of them living their lives, and me just responding with RULES and REGULATIONS...
…then I’m missing the boat...
Kids NEED MERCY!!
You know why we let the kids run around church and scream and yell and get loud???
Because - that’s.what.kids.need.
They NEED some MERCY!
They don’t need - Mr. and Mrs. Grinch standing over them always and ONLY spewing out rules and regulations...
We need to HUMBLE ourselves....
We need to FOLLOW our example - Jesus Christ...
WHO
Philippians 2:8 ESV
8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Christ - listen - CONSIDERED us...
THINK of THAT!!
His mercy could only come to us by way of His humility!
The God of the UNIVERSE humbled Himself by BECOMING Flesh...
…by ENTERING into His creation...
AND by allowing His own creation to Kill Him...
When God became Flesh in Jesus Christ...
The highest, purest form of LOVE (Infinite Love came down)....surrounded itself with pure HATRED/EVIL
The highest, purest form of JOY…dipped itself into pure SORROW
The highest, purest form of HOPE…lowered itself into pure DESPAIR
The highest, purest form of LIFE…crucified itself in DEATH
TALK ABOUT - HUMILITY!
The WORD became FLESH…HUMBLED Himself
*But think about this HUMBLING by God...
(When we tell someone - Hey - you should be more HUMBLE - what are we saying?)
We’re saying - You’re being too - PRIDEFUL - you need to HUMBLE yourself
See - we often THINK we’re something that we’re really not!
We often THINK we’re Higher than we REALLY are!
We often THINK we’re more important than we REALLY are!
And so...
When HUMILITY applies to us - it’s warring against - SIN (pride)
But that’s not the case with God...
When Jesus HUMBLED Himself - He wasn’t having to turn away from PRIDE to become Humble...
Where WE often THINK we’re HIGHER - more important than we REALLY are...
That’s IMPOSSIBLE for God to do!
God is ULTIMATE!
It’s impossible for God to have a FALSE VIEW of Himself!
It’s impossible for God to THINK He’s greater than He REALLY is!
And so when Jesus (the Word, God) humbled Himself - it was Him - EMPTYING Himself...
..and CHOOSING to enter INTO His creation...
It was the INFINITE God - entering into a FINITE world
It was INFINITE Love
INFINITE Righteousness
Infinite Holiness
Infinite PERFECTION....entering into a FALLEN WORLD
AND we now - HUMBLE ourselves in turning to Him (Jesus - the Word) IN FAITH...
Back to my HELPING Tia out of the car...
I am the parent, yet HUMBLE myself in choosing to be MERCIFUL to her…(reach out hand)
She - BY FAITH - takes my hand, in HUMILITY…and receives that MERCY!
The WORLD needs our - HUMILITY!
We now - Having the TRUE LIGHT within - we NOW must HUMBLE ourselves - that the world might see and savor JESUS Christ!
That the world might SEE that TRUE LIGHT within us!
In the Word Becoming Flesh: Ultimate Humility Leads to Ultimate Mercy
But that’s not all -
We’re also going to see that...
SLIDE: In the Word Becoming Flesh: Grace Has Come

In the Word Becoming Flesh

What is Grace?
Unmerited favor (Favor from God that is - UNDESERVED)
John 1:14–17 ESV
14 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. 15 (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.’ ”) 16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
What i want to focus on here is verses 16-17...
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...
The UNDESERVED favor of God - has come through - Jesus Christ...
GRACE has come through Jesus Christ...
In v17 we see how the LAW is held up along side GRACE
Now it might seem as though the LAW here is viewed as BAD, and Grace viewed as GOOD...
But that’s not the case...
We ALL know the popular verses...
Ephesians 2:8–9 ESV
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
AGAIN - we see GRACE held up along side WORKS (the Law)
BUT - the Law as we know…has a purpose...
Romans 3:20 ESV
20 For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.
So the Law is basically a Holy Mirror that God holds up to us and says - "OK, do you see yourselves now?
Do you see who you are before Me? -- YOU'RE ALL CURSED!
The Law reveals our sin, and in doing so, curses all those who are under it....pursuing it.
And so -
The Law damns us, and at the same time, points to Jesus Christ as our only way.
WHY?
Because Christ fulfilled the Law.
And Romans 5 gives more detail on this…(explain as you go)
Romans 5:20–21 ESV
20 Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21 so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
v20 - so the LAW increases SIN...
meaning - SIN is SO MUCH a part of who we are - that we don’t even KNOW it until we LOOK at the LAW...
WAY back when we walked through Romans, we saw how the LAW was like - Night Vision Goggles...
If you’ve ever seen the History channel, sometimes they’ll show what it’s like to be in a war...
And one time they showed how good our camouflage really is..
They put up on the screen a picture of a field....(weeds, and a tree-line)...
And you couldn’t see anything but the field.
But then, they showed the same picture through NIGHT VISION GOGGLES...
All of a sudden, you could see 4 Snipers…pointing their weapons right at you...
They were THERE THE WHOLE TIME>..but you couldn’t see them...
That’s how the LAW sees sin.
We can’t SEE sin, until we hold it up against the LAW...
When we LOOK at ourselves through the LENS of the LAW, we suddenly see what’s ALWAYS been there… our SIN
And when THE WORD became FLESH: GRACE CAME!!
Romans 4:13 ESV
13 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith.
Romans 4:16 ESV
16 That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,
AND SO now we see...
Like our text today said - Through Jesus CAME Grace and Truth… (undeserved favor of God)
John 1:17–18 ESV
17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.
Jesus Christ has made God known!
He is God in the flesh...
SUMMARY
And in coming in the FLESH:
God Became Flesh
Ultimate Humility Lead to Ultimate Mercy
Grace Has Come
Let’s Pray
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