John Chapter 1
John Chapter 1
John 1 - The Lamb of God
In a Nutshell
John wastes no time in introducing Jesus to his readers as the Word of God, the Son of God, and the Lamb of God. Unlike the writers of the three Synoptic Gospels, John introduces Jesus at the age of thirty and includes no information about his birth.
In the first eighteen verses of his book, John introduces the Lord. He begins by proclaiming that Jesus reveals God the Father and tells us that when he came to earth, God's Son showed the human race what the Father was like—eternal, personal, and the source of all life. The word life appears no fewer than thirty-six times in this Gospel along with several other key words. We could say that life establishes the central theme for the book.
We need only read the first verse of the Bible (Gen. 1:1) to understand the central issue of life, and it centers on the reality of God. If there is a God (and there is), and if that God has spoken in history (and he has), then the most important thing in the world is to find out what he has said.
The Gospel of John is a loved and familiar book, but many who can quote important verses from its pages have a less-than-satisfactory grasp of its important theology. Yet John wasted no time in introducing the key question: "Who is Jesus Christ?"
In his presentation of Jesus as the Son of God, John started out with creation. Everything that was ever made was made through him; and without him, nothing has ever been created. Jesus was the source of power in the original physical creation and in the spiritual creation by which people are brought to new life in Christ.
Do not forget that key word life. John used it frequently in his Gospel, and he also used it thirteen times in his first epistle and seventeen more times in Revelation. Here in this Gospel we have more than twenty-five percent of all New Testament references to life. John wanted to make sure that everyone knew life is possible only through the Son of God.
The Lamb of God
MAIN IDEA: Jesus Christ is the heart and core of the gospel. Christianity is not a philosophy of life; it centers in a person who is the core of everything Christians believe.
A. Revelation of the Lamb (1:1-5)
SUPPORTING IDEA: Like his heavenly Father, Jesus reveals eternality, personality, deity, creativity, life, and light.
Holman New Testament Commentary - John.
John 1:1 (KJV) 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:1 (MSG) 1 The Word was first, the Word present to God, God present to the Word. The Word was God,
John 1:1 (NLT2) 1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:1 (PassionNTPsa) with notes
1 In the very beginning [a] The first eighteen verses of John are considered by most scholars to be the words of an ancient hymn or poem that was cherished by first-century believers in Christ. - the Living Expression [b] The Greek is logos, which has a rich and varied background in both Greek philosophy and Judaism. The Greeks equated logos with the highest principle of cosmic order. God’s logos in the Old Testament is his powerful self-expression in creation, revelation, and redemption. In the New Testament we have this new unique view of God given to us by John, which signifies the presence of God himself in the flesh. Some have translated this rich term as “Word.” It could also be translated “Message” or “Blueprint.” Jesus Christ is the eternal Word, the creative Word, and the Word made visible. He is the divine self-expression of all that God is, contains, and reveals in incarnated flesh. Just as we express ourselves in words, God has perfectly expressed himself in Christ. - was already there. And the Living Expression was with God, yet fully God. [c] The Living Expression (Christ) had full participation in every attribute of deity held by God the Father. The Living Expression existed eternally as a separate individual but essentially the same, as one with the Father.
The moment we pick up John's gospel we are aware that it is different from the others. There is no genealogy, no manger scene, no boyhood, no baptism, no temptation, no mount or transfiguration, no Gethsemane. There are only a few special miracles chosen by John as "signs." We have the famous I AM sayings of Jesus and many discourses found nowhere else. There are no scribes, no lepers, no publicans, and no demoniacs. There are no parables. It would almost seem, as others have pointed out, that John sits with a copy of Luke's gospel open before him, deliberately leaving out things Luke puts in and putting in things Luke leaves out (W. Graham Scroggie, A Guide to the Gospels, London: Pickering and Inglis, 1962). Luke had written to show that Jesus was the Son of man; John is writing to show that Jesus is the Son of God.
John's language is Greek but his thoughts are Hebrew. His language is simple, his vocabulary small. There are about six hundred words in John's vocabulary. It is the vocabulary of a seven-year-old child (a child adds about a hundred words to his or her vocabulary every year). But if John's "coins" are few, their denomination is large; they are golden coins, royal sovereigns, the kind one would find in a rich man's purse. The word John uses most is Father (121 times) with the companion expression my Father (35 times). He is fond of the word believe (99 times). Other common words are world (79 times), Jews (71 times), know (oida 61 times and ginosko 56 times), abide (41 times), life (36 times), light (23 times), love (in its various forms and cognates, 57 times), truth (and its cognates, 66 times).