“John summarizes how the ‘Word’ which was with God in the very beginning came into the sphere of time, history, tangibility —in other words, how the Son of God was sent into the world to become the Jesus of history, so that the glory and grace of God might be uniquely and perfectly disclosed. The rest of the book is nothing other than an expansion of this theme.” D. A. Carson
The Gospel of Jesus Christ contains four basic or fundamental truths. Remove any one of them and you possess a less than complete biblical gospel. This results is a message fundamentally flawed and incapable of providing salvation for anyone from the penalty, power and eventual presence of sin.
What are those four fundamental truths? They are (1) God exists; (2) Sin exists; (3) Salvation exits; and (4) One Savior exists to provide salvation: Jesus Christ. To remove any of these four truth statements is to seriously compromise the Gospel.
These four fundamental truths of the Gospel are located throughout the Scriptures. However, the text which I draw to your attention is John 1:1-18. Identified as John’s prologue to his gospel, these 18 verses contain some of the most crucial statements found in Scripture regarding the Gospel and the personal identity of Jesus Christ. The first portion of the prologue is John 1:1-4: God Exists!
Here is but a sampling of what some of the greatest and respected biblical theologians, pastors and teachers have to say about this first part of John’s prologue.
“The Evangelist sends us to the eternal sanctuary of God and teaches us that the Word was, as it were, hidden there before He revealed Himself in the outward workmanship of the world. John’s introductory words “in the beginning” would have expected to be followed by the word “God” as in Genesis 1:1, but instead introduce the Word. And so even with this first phrase, John causes us to begin thinking that this “Word” is more that an abstract philosophical concept as seen in the Greek culture, but that the Word was divine, which he subsequently proves. An old writer suggests “These words (John 1:1) should be written upon tablets of gold and hung in every church building in the world.” – John Calvin
“There never was a time when the Word was not. There never was a thing that did not depend on Him (the Word) for its existence (Colossians 1:17). With God – It certainly makes clear the distinct existence of the Word with respect to God. The Word is no mere ‘emanation from God’ as in much first-century thinking.” – Leon Morris
“Words are important for words convey thoughts. We don’t truly know what another person is thinking unless they express their thoughts in words (and so it is with God – how could we possibly know what He is thinking if He did not express Himself in words!). It is by means of words that we communicate. It is by means of words that we reveal what is happening. John chooses the word, Logos, which was familiar in the minds of both Hebrew and Greek thinkers, and both groups to one degree or another had the idea of beginnings related to the word Logos. And so John’s opening would remind the Hebrew thinker of Genesis 1:1 (In the beginning) and Genesis 1:3 (“Then God said, “Let there be light.”) God spoke and all came into existence (Hebrews 11:3) To the Greek mind Logos was “regarded in a multi-various and ambiguous fashion. The word Logos has a unique capacity to convey God’s ultimate Self disclosure in the Person of His Son.” – Alistair Begg
“O Thou Son of the Blessed! Grace stripped Thee of thy glory. Grace brought Thee down from heaven. Grace made Thee bear such burdens of sin, such burdens of curse as are unspeakable. Grace was in Thy heart. Grace came bubbling up from Thy bleeding side. Grace was in Thy tears. Grace was in Thy prayers. Grace streamed from Thy thorn-crowned brow! Grace came forth with the nails that pierced Thee, with the thorns that pricked Thee! Oh, here are unsearchable riches of grace! Grace to make sinners happy! Grace to make angels wonder! Grace to make devils astonished!” – John Bunyan
Take time today to worship and praise the eternal Word of God, Jesus Christ.
Soli deo Gloria!