Hi thank you for joining us on the Fall For Christ Series, if you would like to receive a FREE PDF copy of the entire series as well as other notes please email Starting With Jesus before the 20th February 2019 with the subject line #FFCF and you should hopefully receive the online #FFCF pack sometime in March.
In the beginning, when I set out to start this series on the Book of John, I didn’t realise that I had bitten off more than I could chew. My initial thoughts were that I was going to look at one or two chapters a post for the 14 days, however, as I began to reread the book of John, I quickly realised that this was not going to be the case. It was becoming more apparent that the topics and concepts that I thought I already understood; I actually didn’t. So I found myself having to start on a blank slate and ask a lot more questions and being more prepared to let go of my previous knowledge and understanding and just put my trust in God through all this. I pray that you will be blessed just as much as I will and that we will both take something more profound then we had anticipated. With that in mind let’s begin our first Fall for Christ February series or #FFCF for short.
The New Testament begins with 4 Books written by Jesus’ disciples, two of which were written by His contemporaries ( meaning they were present when Jesus was ministering on Earth as a man). Neither of them contradicts one another but supports and present a particular image of Christ.
- The Book of Matthew was written for the Jews to present Christ as the Jewish messiah the one in whom the prophets spoke about,
- The Book of Mark was there to demonstrate Christ’s purpose to serve Gods will by saving man and he did this through His many miracles.
- The Book of Luke was written to position Christ as the Royal Priest one who could perform the sin offering on our behalf and rekindle our relationship with God. Read More on This
However, when we come to John it is different, this book not only reveals Christ’s deity ( reveals Christ as God), it reveals to us the unity and intimacy of the Trinity/ Tri-Unity ( God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) and their desire to make us one with them.
"May they all be one, as You, Father, are in Me and I am in You.
May they also be one in Us, so the world may believe You sent Me"
When we read the Old Testament, the person of Jesus is concealed and His relationship and purpose within the Trinity is unknown to us without prodding from the Holy Spirit. So instead John must begin by revealing Christ within the Old Testament and must go further by revealing Christ as God, in the beginning, to demonstrate that he existed long before the conception of time and our present reality. The Book of John begins with a prologue that comprises 18 versus just to reaffirm His Deity.
Before he even came as a man, Christ was the personal expression of God revealed to man, the word expression refers simply to the action of making one’s thoughts, feelings, ideas known. Christ was the written representation of God’s thoughts to man, God presented His thoughts through communication to us, he said… he spoke … the words he spoke … the performance he gave of creating life was a way in which God could communicate to us His ideas. So when we read in John 1:1 that ‘In the beginning was the Word’ we are thus directed to Genesis 1:3 where ‘God at the beginning of time said, “Let there be light”‘, God communicated His thoughts and His plans; he said and creation was made. In order for God to have had the ideas before creation means that those ideas wherewith God long before our time, therefore, the beginning spoken of in John is not the beginning of Christ ( for he did not have a beginning, he was God whose origin was from eternity – check out Micah 5:2) but the beginning of time. I love reading ‘The Living Bible’ (TLB) translation as it turns concepts and poetry so advanced like we find in John 1:1-5 into layman terms.
Before anything else existed, there was Christ, with God. He has always been alive and is himself God’John 1:1-2 (TLB)
When God speaks there is a life that emanates from Him, what was unknown to us due to lack of communication is revealed to us. It is one thing to imagine building your own house and is another to draw it out on a blueprint, so if someone were to see that blueprint they would know what kind of house you want to build and because they now know ( because God’s plans have been brought into existence through this blueprint) what you want to build they can build it for you. In the same manner, when God speaks, when he utters words from His mouth He is expressing His plans and we who listen to him speak, have more faith and understanding because we can now see the blueprint coming together. ‘Faith… is birthed in a heart that responds to God’s anointed utterance of the Anointed One’ (Romans 10:17 TPT), in simple English, we gain faith when we listen to God’s spoken word.
‘Life was in Him and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, yet the darkness did not overcome it’John 1: 4-5
Quickly recapping what was said prior, when God speaks He brings into existence things that were unknown to us, more specifically the words he speaks out bring life. Life flows through the words he speaks, nothing was created without God’s words being spoken out. (The Word) reveals God’s blueprint and gives us direction on where we ought to be. What was hidden is now revealed through Him because that life He emits is the ‘light of men, the light shines in the darkness yet the darkness did not overcome it’ (John 1: 4-5), once we have received that word nothing can deter us from His intended blueprint, we were blind but now we can see because his light illuminates everything and we no longer wander aimlessly in the dark.
The Word became flesh and took up residence among usJohn 1:14
God’s spoken word became man and lived among us as Christ the Messiah, and lived in equal unity with the Godhead. His relationship with the Godhead was so inter-entwined unlike any other man before Him, he co-existed with the spirit. Having been miraculously conceived by the Holy Spirit (read Matthew 1:18), he too came so that we might be miraculously conceived by that same Spirit so that we too could be ‘born not of blood [ethnic heritage], or the will of the flesh [personal desire], or the will of man [man-made system], but of [the grace of] God’ (John 1:13). Note, we aren’t just adopted because adoption only signifies a change with our birth certificates, we are indeed conceived and birthed by spirit, so now not only has our birth certificates changed but so has our DNA. Our DNA no longer resembles flesh but resembles the person who has conceived us and that is our God.
Within the first 14 verses of the Book of John, we have established that
- Christ was present with God before creation, and His origins are eternal
- His purpose is to reveal Gods thoughts and plans to man
- He emits life, and everything that has been created was created through Him
- We find our lives in Him and our faith is strengthened when we listen to Him
- He manifested Himself as flesh to demonstrate the inseparable relationship between Himself and God so that we may model ourselves after such a relationship
- He came so that we would not only become adopted by Him but that our DNA would resemble His very own image and likeness.
At this point, you have to wonder what more is there to find within the Book of John that has not been mentioned in the first 14 verses, but there is so much more which we will explore in later posts.
To end this post I want us to spend some quiet time meditating on the ‘Word’ and His importance within our lives. I’ve included a song for anyone who just wants to soak in His presence.