< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: John 1:6-18

Saturday, February 25, 2017

John 1:6-18

John 1: 6-9 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world.

God sent John the Baptist to prepare the world to believe in the light of the incarnate Word, Jesus Christ.

John 1:10-11 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.

This Gospel uses the word “world” 80 times. In this passage it refers to the system of society or sphere of human life that chooses to live apart from God. In every age the majority of the human race lives in alienation from its Maker. But everyone who is brought face to face with Jesus Christ is responsible to recognize Him as the light of the world. Just like a plant turns to the sun, we are designed to turn to Him. Not to recognize Him implies conscious rebellion or unconscious repression of truth.

He came to His own. He came to the Israelites first. The people God entrusted with His revelation, the Old Testament.  But today these words speak to anyone born in a Christian home or who has a church affiliation or knowledge of the Gospel and they refuse to take time to read His words, to pray to Him, to serve Him or to be involved in His church. He needs to be the center of our lives.

The Jews rejected Jesus. And God had prepared them for His coming throughout their history! But some came. And some are coming today. And Gentiles came.

John 1:12-13 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

John uses two verbs to describe personal commitment to God in true faith. Receive and believe. In the days Jesus lived on earth, this meant to receive Him openly as the promised Messiah and the unique Son of God. In our day it means to receive Him into our very being through the person of the Holy Spirit. It means to recognize Him as our Lord, King and Savior from sin. To believe expresses the definite decision to accept the facts as true, to love and desire to belong to Christ, and to commit to live in the light of this belief.  

When we’ve believed and received, we’ve entered into a new relationship with God and are obedient to His will. We’re His child. He’s adopted us and will never let us go. We have new life. Eternal life. And it only comes from God through His Son.

John 1:14-18 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15 (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’”) 16 Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.
The Word became flesh and made His dwelling place among us. And John witnessed this personally. John saw the very Glory of God in the man Jesus Christ.

Grace in place of grace already given, means you will never exhaust the grace of God. The blessing you receive when you first believe grows as your faith grows. Grace is God’s undeserved favor, which through Christ God pours out on His people. He gave us the law through Moses and because of our sinful nature we were (are) powerless to live by it. So God forgives the sin of transgressing His law. By grace.

No one has seen God. But from this book we learn if we’ve seen Jesus we’ve seen God. He declares or demonstrates in every aspect of His person every aspect of God Himself. There is a perfect oneness, a deep intimacy between the Father and Son.

In Jesus’ life we see how God thinks and therefore how we should think!

To have Him come to earth and walk among people was astounding! In that day only the high priest could go into the inner temple, and that was once a year. Now people could have total access to God!

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